It seems some prettier graphics were done recently to graphically show a demographic study on social media from July 29, 2008.

While these stats are a little dated, they strongly reinforce what I was saying last week about LinkedIn.

Every businessperson should have a LinkedIn account!

I dug a little deeper into the numbers, and discovered:

  • Most notably, 10.3% of LinkedIn users are under 25.  This compare to 65.5% of MySpace users and 66.3% of FaceBook users. Consider that most successful businesspeople (aggregate) are over 24.
  • While there are more men then women on LinkedIn (57.9%), this is also true of business (yes, this is changing, but if LinkedIn was launched in 1951, 98.3% of members would be men). But what all the editorial on this study seems to have missed is that the younger the demographic, the more on par the groups become (55% are male in the 25-34 age group; 51% in 18-24).  If you consider that females are more likely not to specify their gender, the “Unspecified” column might actually put females in the majority in the budding young entrepreneur age groups (which, we are told, is the way the entrepreneur curve is actually going).

Yes, LinkedIn has far fewer users than FaceBook, MySpace, and probably even Twitter (if Twitter doesn’t have more now, they certainly will by March 3rd at 7:14pm PST).

Yes, LinkedIn is a lowly number 4 by traffic (after Twitter).  (And probably destined to fall in the “stats”, I would guess, as other social media networks rise.)

All this said, I would still argue that it is and will remain the dominant force in the best social media niche, “business”.  And it’s niche is not “internet business” or “geeky business” – just “business”.

This niche also means it has far more opportunities to become profitable.  I doubt FaceBook and MySpace make a profit (yes, even despite the irritable number of ads on MySpace); and Twitter hasn’t even really tried to make money yet.