On a daily basis, young Europeans use WhatsApp more than TikTok

Two-thirds of 25-39 year-olds use WhatsApp every day, according to a study by YPulse. — AFP

WhatsApp plays a key role in the lives of young Europeans. The favourite messaging platform of this demographic, two-thirds of 25-39 year-olds use it every day, and among 13-17 year-olds, the platform is on par with TikTok.

In Europe, three out of five young people aged 13 to 39 use WhatsApp every day, according to a study by YPulse,* conducted in the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy. Meta’s tool has established itself as the leading social media platform for young people in terms of usage.

However, there are differences in useage according to the generation. Two-thirds of 25-39 year-olds open WhatsApp every day, compared with 56% of 13-17 year-olds and 52% of 18-24 year-olds. This group uses Meta’s messaging service on a daily basis at the same rate that they use TikTok. By contrast, 18-24 year-olds are more likely to visit the Chinese social network every day (61%) and Instagram (60%).

The fact that Meta's messaging service is free to use makes it one of the most popular. According to YPulse, the app's security features also tip the scales in WhatsApp's favor, as they enable encrypted and therefore private messages.

The study also shows that WhatsApp is the platform most used by 13-17 year-olds (48%) and 25-39 year-olds (53%) to send messages, post content or comment, at least once a week. The only age group that turns more to Instagram than WhatsApp is that of 18-24 year olds at 49% vs 44%.

An asset for brands

While TikTok is an essential for young Europeans, their use of it differs from that of WhatsApp. For one thing, they have a more passive relationship with it. Only a quarter of young Europeans actively engage on TikTok by posting, sending videos or commenting each week.

The majority are content to consume the entertaining content offered by the platform, without direct interaction. Only 20% of 25-39 year-olds, 35% of 13-17 year-olds and 36% of 18-24 year-olds post and comment on the Chinese social network at least once a week.

With this high level of engagement, WhatsApp is becoming an essential platform for brands wishing to reach young Europeans. WhatsApp's parent company, Meta, has developed tools that enable brands to create their own communication channels and deliver targeted content to their audiences. – AFP Relaxnews

*Survey conducted among a representative national sample of 2,500 young people aged 13 to 39 in the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy, from September 26 to October 5, 2023.

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