Are Snapchat and Instagram Regional Apps? Surprising Stats Reveal the App Each Coast Prefers

From goofy distortive filters to controlled amounts of time people can view photos, Snapchat offers users an outlet for quick and raw photo sharing. Instagram, on the other hand, focuses on perfected images, allowing users to set their desired saturation points, highlights, and sharpness. Additionally, Instagram’s shifted focus to ad-based material creates additional barriers compared to Snapchat’s selective and avoidable ad-capabilities. Survata interviewed users of both apps and asked them to choose which they would keep if they could only continue using one. Overall, 57% of respondents chose Instagram, but when split up by demographic, some results are surprising.

Overall Snap vs. Insta Breakdown

Given millennials’ ever-growing technology usage, assumptions would lead to the conclusion that younger people would move toward Snapchat. However, it looks like older generations feel more dedicated to Snapchat than millennials; 52% of users ages 45-65 say they would rather keep Snapchat if given the choice.

Perhaps millennials are slowing down and beginning to like the ease of peacefully scrolling through their respective feeds. The added memories feature on Snapchat could make it more appealing to older generations, who may prefer to avoid expending energy keeping up with the Facetuned and edited perfection of America’s youth in posts.

Age Preferences

While the overall majority chose Instagram as the frontrunner, the regional breakdown of Snapchat vs. Instagram preference displays an East vs. West disparity. With Snapchat’s hub in LA, and the tech industry centered in Silicon Valley, we were not surprised that the West showed more interest in pursuing this newer app.

Regional Preferences

Interested in measuring your own consumer preferences? Try a Survata survey now and start seeing data today.

Methodology Details
This survey was commissioned by Survata and conducted by Survata, an independent research firm in San Francisco. Survata interviewed 600 online respondents between July 07, 2016 and July 18, 2016. Respondents were reached across the Survata publisher network, where they take a survey to unlock premium content, like articles and ebooks. Respondents received no cash compensation for their participation. More information on Survata’s methodology can be found at

Come See Us on Stage at ARF’s Audience Measurement Conference

It has been an exciting few weeks for us at Survata, featuring product launches and partnerships that are unlocking new ways for marketers to conduct research. While we have enjoyed the great reactions from across the ad industry, this is just the beginning of what is going to be quite a busy summer. Next up is ARF’s Audience Measurement conference, where our CTO, Jim Warner, will take the stage to explain how Survata’s Retargeted Surveys™ have enabled our online media clients to reinvent their audience profiling processes.

As the name implies, this conference is all about media audiences — measuring engagement, reaching the right groups, getting feedback, and more. Survata’s pixel retargeting technology allows this research to be done with more flexibility and accuracy than ever by combining the power of pixel tracking with the reach of our publisher network, meaning our clients can get better data without compromising their own site’s user experience.

Tag Now, Ask Later™

This ability to profile audiences without having to use pop-ups or panels has been of particular interest to many of our clients. Pierre Bouvard, CMO at Westwood One, said the following about this capability:

Media companies need to survey their consumers without interrupting site experience. The solution? Survata’s innovative ‘Tag now, ask later’ approach. This is the future of media research!

With great client feedback like this, we are confident everyone with audience profiling needs will find something to love about Survata’s capabilities. At ARF, Jim will walk you through the full story, from how we built our technology, to what exactly it can do, and finally to some cool ways current clients are using it. Check out the video preview below:

Of course, this will not be your last opportunity to see Survata on stage this summer – we’ll also be presenting at Greenbook’s IIeX conference the same week! We will keep you posted on other upcoming events as they draw closer. In the meantime, we hope to see you in the audience on Monday!

25 Million Verizon/AT&T Subscribers Up for Grabs in Next Six Months

Verizon and AT&T are the dominant US wireless carriers, with over 70% of subscribers between them. T-Mobile just announced a good quarter driven by new customers, mostly poached from AT&T. We wondered, how many people are going to abandon AT&T and Verizon this year?

We asked AT&T and Verizon wireless customers – specifically those who pay the bill or whose spouse pays the bill – if they intend to switch wireless carriers in the next six months. As you can see below, the majority of people aren’t interested in switching carriers – but there’s a sizable portion of contracts up for grabs.

survata tracks AT&T and Verizon customer loyalty

Combining subscribers “somewhat likely” and “very likely” to switch equates to 14.5 million AT&T customers and 10.5 million Verizon customers up for grabs in the next six months.1

Where are subscribers likely to leave AT&T and Verizon going? 78% of switchers will stay in the top 4 (Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint), while 22% will move to smaller carriers.

Click here for full results.

1. Taking margin of error into account, at 95% confidence interval, the range of customers up for grabs is 9 to 20 million for AT&T, and 6 to 15 million for Verizon.

One Third of Midwestern Smokers Smoke at Least a Pack Per Day

According to the CDC, the percentage of American adults that smoke cigarettes is at its lowest point since they started tracking (currently about 17% of American adults smoke). That seems good. But we wanted to dive a little deeper. Are American smokers also smoking fewer cigarettes per day? It turns out, no. In November 2015 and February 2016, the distribution of smokers was nearly identical between periods. So while the percentage of American smokers may be going down, the amount of cigarettes smokers consume is steady.

We did notice differences in cigarette consumption among regions, as you can see in the chart below (which includes both the November 2015 and February 2016 periods of the survey).

survata tracks smoking

30% of smokers don’t agree that smoking is bad for your health. This group is ten times as likely to agree with the following statements about smoking: “It’s not as bad for your health as most people think” (18% vs 2% of those who agree that smoking is bad for your health) and “As long as you have the right genes, it’s not bad for your health” (12% vs 1% of those who agree that smoking is bad for your health).

Check out full results here, including the percentage of smokers who do it to reduce stress.

Millennial Intent to Cut Cable Doubles

The young continue to cut the cord on cable. By our measurements, 27% of Americans age 18 to 34 don’t pay for cable or satellite TV service, and another 8% intend to join them in the next six months. That’s an accelerating rate, as you can see in the chart below.

survata tracks Airbnb usage

Of those intending to cancel cable/satellite TV, 55% cite the high cost as the reason. What are cord cutters watching? Here are their subscription numbers: Netflix (54%), Amazon Prime (24%), Hulu (19%), and HBO Now (5%).

You can see full results here.

How Many Travelers Consider Using Airbnb?

According to investors, Airbnb is worth $25.5 billion. What? Marriott just agreed to purchase Starwood for half that amount. This seems crazy. Here at Survata, we conduct consumer research. We don’t have a stake in Airbnb’s success, we were just curious: How many people even consider Airbnb when they book travel accommodation? Turns out it’s a small number, but it’s growing fast.1

survata tracks Airbnb usage

Most people who consider Airbnb for personal travel are young: two thirds are age 18 to 34. Hardly any business travelers consider Airbnb when booking business travel. Of the 2,015 respondents across both periods of the survey, only 30 reported considering Airbnb for business travel (1.5%).

55% of Airbnb’s US revenue comes from just 5 markets that hold 30% of active units (New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, & Boston). Our data shows a similar over-representation of those five cities for personal travelers: they make up 15% of our respondents but 29% of Airbnb customers. There’s likely a local network effect going on – people hear about their friends hosting on Airbnb, then decide to consider it when they leave town.

You can see full results of our Airbnb tracking survey here.

1) One statistical qualifier: the margin of error on personal travelers is 3.2%. Perhaps December was a little low, and March was a little high, and in June this trend won’t seem so alarming!

When Will Americans Give Up Car Ownership?

Based on their most recent investment round, Uber is worth more than Ford. GM just invested $500 million in Lyft. Google’s self-driving car recently crashed into a bus, and in a few years there will be millions of self-driving cars crashing into buses globally.

It got us thinking here at Survata… does anyone even drive anymore? So we’ve been asking consumers about cars. It turns out the vast majority of Americans still own a car, but we’ve found an interesting group: the 45% of American car owners who would be willing to give up car ownership. The implications of this are huge. What could cause it? It differs a bit by age, as you can see in the chart below.

survata tracks ridesharing and self-driving car consumer perceptions

How weird is it that self-driving cars are ahead of ride sharing as a reason to give up car ownership? When people want to be driven around… most prefer that a robot do the driving. Frankly it’s a sensible risk assessment, and anything sensible on this topic is a relief after how many people have lost their minds over Uber.

We expect consumer perception to be an important influence on the politicians and bureaucrats who will decide who self-driving cars should be programmed to kill. We’ll keep our finger on the pulse.

Forbes and Wired Change Consumer Perceptions of Ad Blocking

Forbes and Wired recently tried an experiment. They asked website visitors using ad blocking software to turn it off – and denied them access if they refused. This was a risky move for a few reasons.

1) The media coverage of this experiment could increase awareness and usage of ad blocking software (our data does show an uptick in consumer awareness)
2) They could accidentally serve malware ads to consumers after demanding ad blocking software be turned off (Forbes has been accused of this)
3) They could lose readers (while ad blocking readers don’t generate ad revenue, they contribute to total page views which still matters to some advertisers)

We asked consumers about ad blocking in November last year, and again last month. Ad blocking software usage has stayed steady at about 9% of total American internet users.1 But our data2 shows that Forbes and Wired have likely helped move the needle on an important metric: intent to start using ad blocking software.

survata tracks Netflix's most watched originals

To sum up, though awareness may have ticked up, intent to use dropped significantly. That’s a win for online publishers. Was this a blip or a turning point? Check back with us in May to find out (or add your email address in the box on the right and we’ll send you the next batch of results).

1. A recent estimate put the US percentage of ad blockers at 15%, though critics have pointed out that the publisher of the data has a vested interest in that number being as high as possible.
2. Chart displays rounded values. The change in “I haven’t used it, but I think I’m going to try it out” is outside the margin of error, i.e., is statistically significant.

We’ve Launched a Netflix Tracker

Which Netflix shows are the most watched? Per their latest letter to investors, Netflix doesn’t plan to tell us.

“We don’t release title‐level ratings as our business model is not dependent on advertising or affiliate fees.”

Which is a shame for us, but logical for Netflix. If the TV networks had a clear picture of viewership, they would be more effective at negotiating licensing deals. If investors could track which big budget Netflix Originals are flops, it could negatively impact the company’s share price. It makes sense for Netflix to hoard this data, and only release the good news.

Well, that’s boring. So we’re tracking monthly viewership of Netflix TV shows. Every month we’ll ask two thousand Netflix subscribers1 which shows they’ve watched in the past 30 days and which Netflix Originals they’re most excited about watching in the future. We’ll see which new shows are hits or flops, and which returning shows build momentum or start to decline.

The chart below displays the top 20 most-watched shows2. See full survey results in a live dashboard.

survata tracks Netflix's most watched originals

Notes on methodology
How do you ask consumers which TV shows they’ve watched on Netflix? It’s deceptively challenging. If we ask the question as free response we rely on unaided recall and introduce typing fatigue bias. Offering a pick list of hundreds of Netflix shows is equally impractical. The list won’t fit on one page (especially on mobile), and we’ve noticed that consumer attention tends to wane beyond eight multiple choice answer options.

We ultimately used both approaches. We started with an open-ended survey asking 668 Netflix subscribers which shows they’ve watched in the past 30 days. After cleaning the data, we had a list of 51 shows licensed by Netflix mentioned by at least four respondents. We then checked this against the “Popular Shows” section on Netflix to make sure we weren’t missing any of those (we weren’t). For the Netflix Originals, we started with Wikipedia, checked again (which totally counts as work) and supplemented with Google searches. We ended up with 24 Netflix Originals in January.

We created our survey using a question format that displays a random list of eight shows to each respondent. Respondents simply check a box next to each show they have seen in the past 30 days. This approach eliminates the biases mentioned above, but reduces the effective sample size for each show. While we survey 2,255 total respondents, each Netflix Original was shown to approximately 751 respondents (2,255 total respondents * (8 randomly selected shows / 24 total shows in list) = 751, which has a 3.6% margin of error). Each licensed show was shown to approximately 353 respondents (2,255 total respondents * (8 randomly selected shows / 51 total shows) = 353, which has a 5.2% margin of error). Due to the smaller effective sample size for each show, the data will be a little noisy from month to month, especially for licensed shows. But that’s fine. We’re interested in the general trends over time.

If you’re in the media business and want more precise data or different questions, create your own survey, or join Survata Pro and we’ll do the heavy lifting for you.

1: We count a subscriber as anyone who has access to Netflix’s streaming service, even if they don’t pay. For January, 69% of our respondents said they pay for the subscription, and 31% use a friend or family member’s subscription.
2: Survey conducted on January 12th, 2016.

Powering Effective PR Campaigns with Survata

It’s not uncommon for our clients to be interested in sharing the fascinating insights they’ve received from their Survata projects with their customers and clients. Many of the results we provide are used to create marketing and PR material. Recently, our partner Bloomreach used Survata data to power, as PR Director Sam Moore said, “The most successful PR campaign in our history, reaching every major American market.”

Bloomreach wanted to create a piece of high-quality, original content to share at an industry conference, with a dual goal of starting conversations with prospects and generating media coverage. They launched a Survata study asking consumers how they searched for products online, and discovered that nearly half began on Amazon. From their results, Bloomreach created their ‘State of Amazon and Web Personalization Study,’ and immediately set off a barrage of press coverage unseen by anyone in their company in the past.

From Bloomreach’s Survata data, they generated 2 national TV broadcasts including The Today Show, 98 regional news broadcasts, and multiple mentions on CBS MoneyWatch Radio. They received coverage from outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, Internet Retailer, Venturebeat, CNBC, Forbes, Time, and more. Also, they were able to generate over 200,000 social media mentions in the first week of their PR launch alone. They have even redesigned their homepage to highlight findings from their Survata data.

Bloomreach redesigned homepage - Survata

The business results of their PR campaign are similarly impressive. They have generated a measurable increase in new customers and inbound from quality customer prospects. The coverage also allowed them to launch the most successful webinar they had even launched and created a major industry call to provide updates and further research results in the future.

“If any organization is looking for a company that provides the quality of the big boys with the commitment of a startup,” Moore says, “then the Survata team is your only choice.”

We’re always excited to see Survata data used effectively by our clients, both as proprietary research, as well as for use in marketing and PR campaigns. If you are looking to leverage top-notch market research in your campaigns, get in touch now!