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Facebook Marketing in Japan by the Numbers

Japanese Market Data

As we reviewed in Facebook Pixel Helper, being one of the largest social media networks in the world, holds a high ground in terms of usage rate by people across the world. On the contrary, Japan Facebook doesn't get as much attention. As discussed in Japan Social Media Best Practices, many international businesses and marketers in Japan tend to overlook Facebook as a channel for advertising, as they believe that the Japanese population isn't on the platform.

This is interesting, because Facebook is one of our most successful platforms when running ads for our own clients. Let's deep dive to find out the user dynamics in the platform, and answer the mystery of how the Japanese people use Facebook.

Monthly Active Users of Facebook in Japan

Let's begin by taking a look at some of the numbers our digital agency put together to get a better picture of what's going on. There are 26 million monthly active users (Facebook) in Japan, which is a relatively high number. Now if you compare this to other social media such as LINE and Twitter, which are the two most popular platforms in the nation, with numbers of MAU being 82 million and 45 million respectively, the number does look small. However, the very interesting part of Facebook lies somewhere else.

Nearly 50% of the population in their 30s living in Japan uses Facebook, together with 40% of people in their 20s, 36% of people in their 40s, and 34% of people in their 50s.

(Reference: 総勢省情報通信対策研究所)

Now, there is no other social media platform in Japan that has such a predominant user-base of the older population, even when compared to the likes of Instagram and Tiktok.

This is likely one of the big reasons that our Facebook campaigns see great results; the consumers who have a highest potential to make buying decisions are the main users of the platform.

How Japanese Users Use Facebook

Everyone needs a beginners guide to Facebook Advertising, however any guide means nothing without knowing the numbers. The various objectives that Japanese people hold when using Facebook differed greatly, again, relative to how much they earn.

(Left Half: Usage Frequency | Right Half: Usage Objective)

(Reference: まいにちdoda)

Those earning under 2 million yen per year answered that they use the app mainly for communicating with their family and friends, while those between 3 to 4 million answered that they use it to share their opinions and information. On the other hand, it was found that the 6 to 7 million club and beyond used it with a more concrete objective, such as expanding business connections, gathering information for their work/job and also their hobbies.

Future of Facebook in Japan

Facebook has been seeing a stagnant growth in its users in Japan, caused by the low popularity from the younger generation. However, due to the same organization running one of the most popular social media apps to the young population, Instagram, it is highly likely that the company would bring out a feature that will better merge those users in order to bring a new influx of younger audiences to Facebook. The trend has already started, as you can see from the figure above with the MAU of the population in their teens seeing a rise from around 18% to 29% between 2018 and 2019.

If you want to learn more about Japanese Facebook, read more at Top Digital Marketing Agency Blogs. However, As you can see, the discrepancies in the objectives create a big argument in answering whether a business should use Facebook when targeting Japanese audiences. However, it is clear that it is a platform that should not be ignored by any business, and should most definitely be considered when targeting anyone above their 20s. Not to mention, with the potential upside of the young population for the future, it is definitely a good idea for any business to begin working and preparing their company page on the platform.

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