Instagram usage is up for both Gen Z and Millennials this year. YPulse's Social Media Monitor reports show that Instagram is these two generations' second most used social media platform and the second they claim as their favorite after TikTok.
YPulse found that Instagram usage has increased for Gen Z by +6pts to 66% and +12pts for Millennials to 67% from November 2022 to April this year.
Both Gen Z and Millennials use Instagram Stories, Reels, and filters the most, with Millennials favoring video content and filters slightly more.
YPulse's latest Experiences report data found that when it comes to sharing experiences, Gen Z and Millennials turn to Instagram to post about places they've traveled to and events they've attended. Three-quarters of young social media users agree: "Seeing my friends' posts online of cool things they are doing makes me wish I was with them," and the top kinds of experience content they post on Instagram include the things they find interesting/beautiful, places they've traveled to, concerts they've gone to, as well as a virtual event/concert. While day-in-my-life content is huge on TikTok, a quick Instagram post on their story or main feed is their go-to for their best moments.
These younger consumers even have a preferred style for their Instagram posts. At the start of the year, Gen Z was in their "weird girl era." They were populating their Instagram feeds with blurry photo dumps and seemingly un-curated recaps of random moments from the last week or month. Polished Instagram posts or stories are essentially "out," while intentionally blurry and fuzzy pictures are "in." Although the "ugly" aesthetic has been trending for some time now, from wearing chunky fashion to the images young people post on social media. YPulse's research found that 62% of 13-36-year-olds feel bothered when people post photos that make their lives look perfect. Posting intentionally poor-quality photos is one way Gen Z and Millennials are serving "I'm having too much fun and living life so fast that a camera can't even capture me" vibes on Instagram. Ultimately, they're finding comfort in the imperfect and rebranded how they use Instagram to capture that.
This means location-based entertainment venues should embrace the imperfect look to connect with Gen Z and Millennials rather than polished photos.