Parents Use Facebook, Mobile More Heavily Than Non-Parents


Facebook has shared on its People Insights page that it studied 25- to 65-year-old parents of infants, toddlers, adolescents, and teens globally, finding that parents are heavier Facebook users than non-parents.

Using Facebook and Instagram information across Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Mexico, Spain, the UK, and the US, along with work they commissioned through Ipsos Media CT and Sound Research, Facebook IQ analyzed data and gathered feedback from 8,300 parents and five experts in the field of parenting.

Parenting, says Facebook IQ, looks different than it used to because of cultural, societal, and technological changes. Even the definition of family has expanded to include older moms, more involved dads, and more vocal children.

According to the research, today’s parents are using mobile devices to manage schedules, keep tabs on their teens, and to share their kids’ milestones. Mobile phones also help parents makes better purchasing choices, especially for Millennials, who are 30% more likely to to use their mobile devices for making expenditure decisions than Baby Boomer parents.

Currently, 83% of parents said they have greater access to information and opinions pertaining to parenting than their parents did. Seventy percent said they are more informed than their parents were. 76% of Boomers say the same.

Along with this proliferation of information for parents, children are also receiving enormous amounts of data, meaning kids are influencing household purchasing decisions as well. Fifty percent of parents said their children have more impact on what is purchased than they did when they were growing up, and 50% say they listen to their children more than their parents listened to them.

The research found that moms and dads are more likely to prioritize their own needs. A Mexican parent said:

“As soon as I drop them off at school, I go running … I feel stressed out all day long. I think when I go running [it’s] the only time I have for myself, getting relaxed and having some coffee. And after that I have to cook … my kids get home, I have to feed them, drive them to their activities.”

It is common knowledge that US parents are extremely fond of posting pictures of their children on Facebook, but the study provided real numbers that prove how often parents like to share. American mothers post 2.5 times more status updates, 3.5 times more pictures, and 4,2 times more videos than childless couples. The research also found that new parents use Facebook mobile 1.3 times as often as their kid-less counterparts.

Christopher Heine, writing for Adweek, quotes Ann Mack, head of content and activation, global consumer insights for Facebook:

Mobile has become a lifeline for parents, now over-indexing on mobile usage across the eight countries we studied. For brands, this presents a huge opportunity to connect with modern parents and provide utility in the moments they can’t be reached elsewhere.”

Mack continues by pointing out that now parents are less likely to mail holiday cards or school pictures, but instead share the milestone’s of their children’s lives through online photos and videos.

Parents are using the mobile version of Facebook more often just as mobile devices become increasingly connected to daily life, allowing parents to use on their phones and tablets to decide on purchases based on price comparisons and reviews, writes UberGizmo’s Tyler Lee.