In 2013, Facebook saw its engagement declining among teens. But even a year later, Facebook remained the most popular and frequently used social platform, according to Pew Research Center.

That’s why when Facebook offered to buy Snapchat in 2013 for $3 billion in cash, everyone thought it was ludicrous. $3 billion for an app that made no money and had 33 million users? It shocked the industry — especially since that was nearly twice what Google paid to buy YouTube in 2006.

In hindsight, it looks like Facebook may have had a crystal ball. Now, according to the latest Pew research from 2018, Facebook is now the fourth most popular network with teens (down three spots in a list of seven).

Read on to what social network is now teens’ favorite, where they’re spending the most time and more marketing insights.

Note: Unless otherwise mentioned, all below data is from the latest Pew research. Teens refer to those between the ages of 13 and 17.

Always Online

The biggest change from the last Pew Study on teens in 2015?

Almost all teens (95 percent) have a smartphone or have access to one. That number holds up across different genders, races and ethnicities and socioeconomic backgrounds.

Because of that nearly universal access, roughly half of teens (45 percent) are online on a "near-constant basis." That’s almost double what it was in 2015.

Also, because of their omnipresent cellphone, a computer is no longer a must. Only 88 percent of teens have one.

Marketing takeaway: If this group is your target demographic, go all in on mobile. That should be your No. 1 priority. Make that experience as user-friendly as possible.

Then, experiment by posting social content or sending marketing emails at odd times of the day. See what sticks!

Where the Teens Are

As you know, Facebook is no longer the platform with the most U.S. teen users.

Instead, here’s the breakdown.

  • 85 percent are on YouTube.
  • 72 percent are on Instagram.
  • 69 percent are on Snapchat.
  • 51 percent are on Facebook.
  • 32 percent are on Twitter.
  • 9 percent are on Tumblr.
  • 7 percent are on Reddit.
  • 3 percent are on none of the above networks.

Marketing takeaway: While YouTube isn’t a social network in the traditional sense, its top spot means your brand should be creating more videos. From there, invest your time creating content for Instagram and Snapchat.

Most-Used Platforms

While those are the accounts that have the most teen users, the order switches a bit when asked which platforms teens use the most.

  • 35 percent use Snapchat most.
  • 32 percent use YouTube most.
  • 15 percent use Instagram most.

Girls use Snapchat more while boys prefer YouTube. Also, black teens say Facebook is their go-to network four times more than white teens.

Lower-income teens (whose annual household income is under $30,000) are five times more likely to use Facebook most, compared to higher-income teens.

Marketing takeaway: Plan to spend your ad dollars in the top three platforms YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat.

As you divvy up your time on networks, spend the most time cultivating content for Snapchat since it’s one of the most popular and most-used platforms. Delve deeper into how different demographics use social networks here.