I don’t have an Instagram husband who takes glamorous photos of me in the funky alleyways of Byron Bay for ‘The Gram’ (even though I have lived there on and off over the last few years – for the best tacos get to Chihuahua for hole-in the-wall deliciousness)
I don’t post my TikToks to my Instagram reels every day because 1, I don’t have TikTok and 2, I don’t have time. Ohh man, I probably should start an account huh. Ugh. Another day.
I’m definitely not any kind of Instagram influencer and didn’t even jump onto the platform myself until 2014.
I also, just so happen, to LOVE Facebook. Welllll … for business purposes anyway. So this isn’t some kind of hip Instagram lady who thinks Facebook is so 2015 trying to convince you to come and play where the cool kids are.
Nope, this is all about stats. And demographics. And why you need to be looking forward if you want your business to be just as busy in 2026 as it is now.
Here’s some numbers that you need to know straight up:
According to Statista, almost 70% of the global Instagram user population is younger than 34 years old. To create a better picture of that statement, at the end of 2020 the global Instagram population was 1 BILLION ACTIVE PEOPLE PER MONTH accessing the platform. Yep, quite a few!
The general trend is this – Instagram users are on average younger and Facebook users are getting older. In a very basic nutshell.
Oh wow! Showing my age now aren't I! Any Gen Z kids heard of Austin Powers? haha.
So what does this mean to people (like portrait photographers, retailers and service providers)?
Maternal age is where we need to start. This graphic from the Australian Institute of Health & Welfare helps to paint the picture and explains that Australian mothers between 30 and 34 were the most likely to give birth. Keep in mind that this graphic includes both first-time AND subsequent pregnancies which does have an impact on the numbers. Because of that, if you were looking to target first time mothers, the data would edge a little younger.
Let’s just pick 32 as our magic age to make the concept simple.
In 5 years time, 32 year olds having babies will be our friends from Gen Z (kids born from 1997 to 2015).
The people you work with TODAY are most likely, Millennials. The ones born from 1996 – 1981. Lovers of Facebook. Early adopters who were just the right age to jump on board the platform when it came to life in 2006.
Here’s some stats that you might like to know about how those Generation Z folk (your not-so-distant-future clients) are using technology:
1 – Gen Zers use social media for almost 3 hours per day with more than 50%+ connected to the internet for more than TEN hours per day.
2 – Gen Z are using Facebook less than any other demographic group (in fact, the fastest-growing group on Facebook are those boomers! 65 years +. Go Grandma!)
3 – 30% of Gen Z respondents in a recent survey had decided to stop using Facebook all together.
So why is this? There’s lots of reasons, from the ‘vibe’ of Facebook changing as content from older users increases through to the amount of ads shown and more.
There’s a lot more from where this came from but you can read it for yourself over at statista.com
Do you know any "youngsters" on Facebook?
My beautiful niece Emma was born in 1997. So in 5 years time, she will be 29! Oh Emsy. Time goes so fast. Haha. But looky here. Emma will be right on the cusp of the average age of Australian mothers having babies. (pretty sure your Mum wants to be a Grandma NOW Em so ya know, get on it)
I just had a quick look at Emma’s Facebook account.
Noooo this isn't a photo from her Facebook page. It's crickets .. as in ... nothing. Nada. Nope. No posts.
Oh wow, she updated her profile photo in April 2020. Not a single post since then made by her. Ok let’s scroll back further …. er nope. No posts since she changed her cover photo in April 2019! Before that? Feb 2018. Haha. So once a year she updates her cover photo but does not post a single thing on her account.
Emma. Lover of cows and tiny hedgehogs?
So the point I’m trying to make is fairly simple.
If you’re not on Instagram yet, you need to be.
If you’re not prioritising it yet, you should be.
Have you missed the boat? Thankfully, not yet!
Will your business suffer by 2026 if you don’t? I’m going to say, very possibly, yes.
“My clients aren’t on Instagram.”
I’ve had quite a few people say this to me this year! I take your point … they may not be NOW … but sure as heck WILL be.
Where will you be?
PS - 500 million people use Instagram stories every day. That’s a chat for another day.