Facebook in Japan in 2012: part 1 of 2

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How many Facebook friends do you have? graph of japanese statisticsRecently, Macromill Research took a close look at the usage patterns of 500 Facebook users, a survey that revealed a number of interesting trends. As it’s quite a large survey, I’ll split it into two parts.

Demographics

Over the 16th and 17th of February 2012 500 members of the Macromill monitor group who were current users of Facebook completed a private internet-based questionnaire. 61.8% of the sample were male, 2.2% in their teens, 21.2% in their twenties, 30.6% in their thirties, 25.0% in their forties, and 21.0% aged fifty or older.

It’s funny, but true overall, I think, that food is the top subject for posts and likes! I recently witnessed on Google+ (I’m not active at all on Facebook) a naturalised Japanese friend of mine post what I thought looked like quite an ordinary meal, but it managed about 12 +1s (likes), and every single one of these was from a Japanese name!

Research results

Q1: How do you have fun on Facebook? (Sample size=500, multiple answer)

  All Male
N=309
Female
N=191
Checking what friends are doing 65.2% 59.5% 74.3%
Looking up old friends 54.8% 54.7% 55.0%
Posting what I’d doing myself 41.4% 36.9% 48.7%
Uploading photos 32.2% 28.5% 38.2%
Chatting to friends on Facebook 30.6% 26.5% 37.2%
Looking at famous people’s corporate fan pages 19.2% 19.7% 18.3%
Making my own information public 17.2% 16.5% 18.3%
Looking up overseas friends 16.4% 12.9% 22.0%
Looking for people with similar interests 16.0% 18.8% 11.5%
Increasing my circle of professional contacts 8.6% 12.3% 2.6%
Playing games 4.8% 5.2% 4.2%
Checking in my current location 3.8% 4.2% 3.1%
Making my own fan pages 2.0% 2.3% 1.6%
Other 5.4% 7.8% 1.6%

Compared with last year, activities in most categories have increased, except, curiously, looking for foreign friends, dropping from 30.0% last year to 16.4% this year.

There was also a breakdown by frequency of use for each category. One number that stood out was that under 1% of those who logged in once a day or less checked in with their physical location, but 13.4% of those logging on at least twice a day did.

Q2: When did you first register on Facebook? (Sample size=500)

2006 or earlier 1.6%
2007 1.8%
2008 4.2%
2009 6.6%
2010 15.2%
2011 56.0%
2012 14.6%

Q3: About how often do you log onto Facebook? (Sample size=500)

Twice a day or more 25.4%
Once a day 27.4%
Once every two or three days 14.2%
Once every four or five days 6.0%
Once a week 10.8%
Twice or thrice a month 7.8%
Once a month 5.2%
Less than that 3.2%

Since last year, the numbers logging in twice a day or more has tripled from 8.6%.

Q4: About how long do you spend on average on each session on Facebook? (Sample size=500)

Less than five minutes 12.8%
Five to ten minutes 19.0%
Ten to twenty minutes 32.2%
Twenty to thirty minutes 8.0%
Thirty minutes to one hour 20.0%
More than one hour 8.0%

That made for an average session on 19 minutes. Those in their twenties spend 23.6 minutes online, versus 14.1 minutes for those over fifty.

Q5: How many Facebook friends do you have? (Sample size=500)

None at all 12.4%
One to four 19.6%
Five to nine 12.8%
Ten to nineteen 14.6%
Twenty to twenty-nine 11.2%
Thirty to forty-nine 10.2%
Fifty to ninety-nine 10.2%
One hundred or more 9.0%

The average user had 34.3 friends; those in their twenties had 68.2, and the over fifties just 12.0. The average is up just under 10 friends since last year.

Q6: What sorts of emotions do you want to share on Facebook? (Sample size=500, multiple answer, top 10)

Rank   Percentage
1 Fun 43.8%
2 Sympathy, empathy 36.6%
3 Interesting 36.2%
4 Moving 35.8%
5 Joyful 33.8%
6 Surprising 19.6%
7 Lovely 16.2%
8 Regretful 12.4%
9 Failure 11.6%
10 Sadness 9.6%

Q7: What sorts of emotions in your friends’ posts make you want to press the ‘Like’ button? (Sample size=500, multiple answer, top 10)

Rank   Percentage
1 Sympathy, empathy 65.8%
2 Fun 50.6%
3 Interesting 47.2%
4 Moving 45.4%
5 Joyful 41.2%
6 Lovely 31.2%
7 Surprising 21.6%
8 Regretful 9.4%
9 Failure 7.4%
10 Sadness 7.2%

Q8: What sorts of contents do you share on Facebook? (Sample size=500, multiple answer, top 10)

Rank   Percentage
1 Food (cooking, restaurants, etc) 49.3%
2 Travel 46.6%
3 Random everyday stuff 44.2%
4 Street scenes, scenery 30.1%
5 Friends 27.2%
6 Music 24.8%
7 Pets 21.8%
8 Sports 21.2%
9 Family 20.6%
10 Children 19.7%

Q9: What sorts of contents in your friends’ make you want to press the ‘Like’ button? (Sample size=500, multiple answer, top 10)

Rank   Percentage
1 Food (cooking, restaurants, etc) 51.6%
2 Travel 49.9%
3 Random everyday stuff 45.3%
4 Children 38.8%
5 Friends 37.8%
6 Family 37.5%
7 Street scenes, scenery 36.0%
8 Pets 33.0
9 Sports 25.9%
10 Music 23.7%
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1 Comment »

  1. hitori said,
    March 24, 2012 @ 07:26

    How do you keep on finding these polls??? This one was interesting indeed, especially when researching SNS behavior of Japanese people.
    I think you could expect the answers on Question 11, because denying a request (be it a phone number, a invitation etc) from a senior is considered rude I believe. (but I do not know if they actually agreed in the end to let them be followed though…)
    I wonder if you could create a page on which are listed the sites you use (sort like 出所の一覧).
    And I am also willing to translate polls of course.

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