SOURCE: Peanut Labs

June 09, 2008 07:59 ET

Gen-Y Social Application Demand Continues to Grow as Facebook Plans Platform Redesign

New Peanut Labs Survey Taken Before Facebook Redesign Shows Rise in Social Application Use; Banner Ads Struggle With 51 Percent Rarely or Never Clicking Through

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - June 9, 2008) - In May 2007, Facebook launched its Facebook Platform and opened its API to application developers. A year later, according to survey results announced today by Peanut Labs Inc., provider of unmatched Gen-Y sample for market researchers, application use amongst 13 - 25 year olds has continued to rise, while banner advertising struggles to inspire clicks.

Opening the Facebook Platform gave developers unique access to a social network's API, allowing them the opportunity to build, distribute, and monetize their own social applications -- but many applications like Zombies, Vampires, Poking and Werewolves were soon labeled as annoyances. Even amidst annoying labels, Peanut Labs' recent usage statistics indicate social networking users seem pleased with the progression these applications have made.

Making these findings particularly relevant is the upcoming redesign to the Facebook interface and its treatment of applications. Given the general satisfaction of users with applications, users are certain to scrutinize the new design to ensure it preserves access to these favored applications.

"Despite the critics, our survey indicates that Gen-Y is truly enjoying social applications," said Murtaza Hussain, chief executive officer of Peanut Labs. "With more than half of all respondents surveyed indicating they rarely or never click ads within social networks, our research indicates that advertisers could benefit from creating engaging widget advertisements in order to reach Gen-Y more effectively."

According to the survey, 61.1 percent of Americans aged 13 - 25 describe their experience with widgets and social applications as "fun." Additionally, 47.7 percent of all Gen-Yers surveyed stated that their widget use has actually increased over the last six months. When asked how frequently these same social network users click on ads within the networks they visit, 51.73 percent indicated they rarely -- once or twice a month -- or never responded to the advertising.

Social Networking Usage

  • 67.95 percent of Gen-Y respondents surveyed said they visit social networks at least once a day.
  • 6.58 percent of the respondents login to social networking sites only a couple of times a month.

Social Network Advertising Response

  • 27.19 percent of young Americans surveyed never click on ads within social networks, while another 24.54 percent click once or twice a month.
  • 20.52 percent of Gen-Y respondents surveyed indicated that they interacted with six to nine ads per month, with an additional 10.95 percent clicking more than ten ads per month.

Facebook Application Experience and Usage

  • 61.11 percent of respondents surveyed found social applications "fun." An additional 15.62 percent find Facebook applications "useful."
  • Out of the respondents surveyed, 11.19 percent found widgets "annoying," and 12.08 percent found them "useless."
  • When asked about the current usage of Facebook applications, 47.03 percent of all Gen-Y respondents surveyed indicated they used widgets more now than they did six months ago, with 32.08 percent stating their usage was about the same.
  • 20.89 percent of all Gen-Yers surveyed indicated that their social application usage had dropped over the last six months.
  • Of those indicating decreased usage, 36.33 percent felt Facebook applications cluttered their profile, while 33.58 percent felt overwhelmed by constant application invites.

The survey was carried out among more than 4000 Gen-Y respondents active on more than 70 leading social networks. Conducted on Facebook Platform's one year anniversary, May 24th, 2008, the survey examined Gen-Y's social networking and application use over the last six months. It also measured how often young Americans respond to ads on social networks.

For more information, or for a copy of the complete research results, please contact Peanut Labs.

About Peanut Labs

Peanut Labs is changing the way online market research is accessed and delivered, providing unparalleled access to millions of 13-25 year olds that comprise today's Gen Y audience. Developer of Sample3.0, the Peanut Labs sample methodology taps into more than 70 social networks including MySpace, Facebook, and Google OpenSocial. Sample3.0 is quickly becoming the online sampling methodology of choice by leading marketing research firms. More information about Peanut Labs and Sample3.0 can be found at

Contact Information

  • Media contact:
    Dan Gould
    SHIFT Communications
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