A recent survey from Reuters found that Instagram has become almost as popular as a news source as Twitter. Specifically, younger people are more apt to get their news from Instagram.
The 2020 Reuters Institute Digital News Report used an online survey of people around the world. According to the report, 11% of respondents from 12 different countries used Instagram to get news, with 12% getting news from Twitter. The number using Instagram for news is almost twice what it was in 2018. Younger people age 18-24 were more likely to use Instagram for news, especially in the US. The report found that 12% of US adults used Instagram for news, but over double that many (26%) of 18-24-year-olds used Instagram.
Younger people still prefer texting for digital news consumption, but they also prefer visual storytelling formats more so than older audiences. In addition, younger users are moving away from Facebook in favor of Instagram.
As more people seek news from Instagram, advertisers and publishers on the platform will need to consider this changing demographic. Instagram advertisers, in particular, will need to keep brand safety in mind – meaning that as news becomes more prevalent on Instagram, it will become more political. For example, Instagram advertisers that continued with their usual marketing campaigns during recent nationwide protests received a lot of negative backlash.