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)

 AllMale
N=309
Female
N=191
Checking what friends are doing65.2%59.5%74.3%
Looking up old friends54.8%54.7%55.0%
Posting what I’d doing myself41.4%36.9%48.7%
Uploading photos32.2%28.5%38.2%
Chatting to friends on Facebook30.6%26.5%37.2%
Looking at famous people’s corporate fan pages19.2%19.7%18.3%
Making my own information public17.2%16.5%18.3%
Looking up overseas friends16.4%12.9%22.0%
Looking for people with similar interests16.0%18.8%11.5%
Increasing my circle of professional contacts8.6%12.3%2.6%
Playing games4.8%5.2%4.2%
Checking in my current location3.8%4.2%3.1%
Making my own fan pages2.0%2.3%1.6%
Other5.4%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 earlier1.6%
20071.8%
20084.2%
20096.6%
201015.2%
201156.0%
201214.6%

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

Twice a day or more25.4%
Once a day27.4%
Once every two or three days14.2%
Once every four or five days6.0%
Once a week10.8%
Twice or thrice a month7.8%
Once a month5.2%
Less than that3.2%

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 minutes12.8%
Five to ten minutes19.0%
Ten to twenty minutes32.2%
Twenty to thirty minutes8.0%
Thirty minutes to one hour20.0%
More than one hour8.0%

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 all12.4%
One to four19.6%
Five to nine12.8%
Ten to nineteen14.6%
Twenty to twenty-nine11.2%
Thirty to forty-nine10.2%
Fifty to ninety-nine10.2%
One hundred or more9.0%

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
1Fun43.8%
2Sympathy, empathy36.6%
3Interesting36.2%
4Moving35.8%
5Joyful33.8%
6Surprising19.6%
7Lovely16.2%
8Regretful12.4%
9Failure11.6%
10Sadness9.6%

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
1Sympathy, empathy65.8%
2Fun50.6%
3Interesting47.2%
4Moving45.4%
5Joyful41.2%
6Lovely31.2%
7Surprising21.6%
8Regretful9.4%
9Failure7.4%
10Sadness7.2%

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

Rank Percentage
1Food (cooking, restaurants, etc)49.3%
2Travel46.6%
3Random everyday stuff44.2%
4Street scenes, scenery30.1%
5Friends27.2%
6Music24.8%
7Pets21.8%
8Sports21.2%
9Family20.6%
10Children19.7%

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
1Food (cooking, restaurants, etc)51.6%
2Travel49.9%
3Random everyday stuff45.3%
4Children38.8%
5Friends37.8%
6Family37.5%
7Street scenes, scenery36.0%
8Pets33.0
9Sports25.9%
10Music23.7%
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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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