Profiling Social Networking Site Users

Social Networking Sites (SNS) grow in the number of users and have become a mass phenomenon. Time for some classification of these SNS users for both academic and practical purposes.

previous research has been focused on the study of user behavior in specific SNSs using mainly psychological (entertainment, socializing, etc.) or sociodemographic variables. In the present study, we propose a classification of users for all SNSs in which they actively participate, using a wide spectrum of behavioral and sociodemographical variables.

Introvert users: they are the smallest group of SNS users, mainly using SNSs for direct messaging. Mostly men older than 45 years of age, using one SNS service, having less than 50 contacts, using SNS once a week no longer than 1 hour.

Novel users: 25,5% of the sample, mostly women younger than 29 years, using SNS several times a week, spending between 2-5 hours per week. They use two SNS for entertainment, to keep in touch with friends and people they know.

Versatile users: The largest group presenting 36,25% of the group. Uses SNS for all kinds of activities such as commenting on friends, photos, public messaging, share photos and links to websites. Mainly men between 36 and 44, connecting at least once a day, spending 1-5 hours a day, using 2 or more SNSs, they have between 10 and 100 contacts. The majority use SNSs for entertainment, to maintain contact with friends, and because they were invited. In this group, there is a higher proportion of individuals who use SNSs for making professional contacts on a professional level.

Expert-Communicator user: About 20% of the sample. The most active user group, performing frequently different activities on SNSs. The majority are women between 25 and 35 with wide experience in SNS use. They use SNS several toimes a day for longer than 5 hours, they use more than two SNS with private profiles and they have more than 100 contacts.

They use SNSs for entertainment, for keeping in touch with friends, because they were invited, to keep informed about events, parties, etc., and to have a closer relationship with people with whom they do not maintain a direct relationship

Couldn’t find myself in any of these profiles, can you?
Alarcón-del-Amo, M., Lorenzo-Romero, C., & Gómez-Borja, M. (2011). Classifying and Profiling Social Networking Site Users: A Latent Segmentation Approach Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking DOI: 10.1089/cyber.2010.0346