Twitter and YouTube Adoption: US Higher Education

US Higher Education's Adoption of Twitter and YouTube

We collected the Twitter and YouTube account opening dates for 4,250 US higher education institutions and plotted these in the graph below. For both social networks the period between 2008 and 2010 saw the highest growth rates. However, it's clear the bandwagon effect was much greater for Twitter than for YouTube, although, long-term, video content may be resonating better with audiences than tweets.

line chart showing the number of accounts opened each month for Twitter and YouTube from 2006 to 2018

It may make most sense to regard social network take up and use as a continuously running experiment that keeps working until it doesn’t. On this basis, new social network adoption is tactical, running ahead of strategy and reflecting one of the key benefits of digital, that the costs and risks of making changes in response to new data are low.

Earliest Account Opening Dates for YouTube and Twitter

YouTube Account Opening Rank Institution Date
1 New Jersey Institute of Technology 2005-07-01
2 Case Western Reserve University 2005-08-21
3 American Film Institute Conservatory 2005-09-24
4 Harvard University 2005-09-25
5 Boston University 2005-10-06

Twitter Account Opening Rank Institution Date
1 New York Institute of Technology 2007-03-16
2 University of Virginia 2007-03-22
3 Calvin College 2007-03-22
4 Eckerd College 2007-04-18
5 Hofstra University 2007-04-18