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Snapchat goes public today, but are their users disappearing?

(TECH NEWS) On the unveiling of their IPO, users of Snapchat are making the decision to stay put or move onto other photo-sharing apps.

snapchat growth stock snapmap

Is Snapchat about to disappear?

As Snap (parent company of Snapchat) went public today, we’re pondering the company’s future. To wit, we look to eMarketer’ recent study on social media platforms and found younger users are moving away from Snapchat.

The study found most of the company’s growth is driven by users over 45, while some under 24 years old are switching primarily to Instagram.

See ya later

Part of the migration comes from Instagram and other social media platforms like WhatsApp and Facebook snatching up cool features from Snapchat.

If younger users can get features they enjoy–like Snap Stories–from Instagram, they’re likelier to stick to one app.

This is understandable. Switching from app to app can get frustrating when you’re trying to share information.

Do or die

However, I don’t think the decline in younger users spells doom for the company.

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Right now, 36.8 percent of US social network users engage with Snapchat, while Instagram (owned by Facebook) has 40.3 percent of the market.

Although eMarketer expects the gap to widen in the next three years, I don’t think this means our favorite little ghost is going away.

Snapchat has seriously expanded its offering

Initially, the only feature was sending one to 10 second videos. Since then, the app has expanded to include video, live video, chat, news content, mini-episodes, and even money sharing.

Snapchat is pretty in-tune with its users. Although the relatively recent addition of intrusive ads has some users deleting the app, many new people are discovering the app’s value.

The new demographic

This year, around 6.4 percent of Snap users will be between 45 and 54, an increase from 4.2 percent in 2016. Forecasting analyst Jaimie Chung said part of this change is a result of changing needs of users. She notes, “older groups are now more likely to tune in for content.”

Snapchat has over 30 news outlets in-app and are constantly expanding news offerings and other features.

I’m still on board even if I don’t use (or know how to use) all the elements of the app.

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Even if Snapchat ends up going the direction of Vine and switching to a standalone video/photo app, I will remain loyal. Plus, despite projections, I’m not too worried about Snapchat losing its core user base.
[clickToTweet tweet=”The largest chunk of those who use Snapchat at least once a month are aged 12 to 34.” quote=”The largest chunk of those who use the app at least once a month are in the 12- to 34-year-old age bracket. “]
Though they might jump ship for different apps, Snap will likely retain and gain older demographics.

Ghostman forever

Luckily, Chung notes that although the gap between Instagram and Snapchat users is expected to widen, Snap Inc. remains focused “on keeping its niche audience engaged and spending more time within the app.”

As long as video and picture sharing remain the core of the app, it will continue to be my favorite form of social media.


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Written By

Lindsay is an editor for The American Genius with a Communication Studies degree and English minor from Southwestern University. Lindsay is interested in social interactions across and through various media, particularly television, and will gladly hyper-analyze cartoons and comics with anyone, cats included.

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