Life Stages: Newlyweds

Last spring, Laura was focused on her upcoming wedding. Now she and her new husband are saving up for a new roof and furnace for their house.

A few weeks after they tied the knot earlier this year, Jamie and her new husband started putting away money so they could move to a larger apartment.

In this third post in a series about how people use Facebook during transitions to new life stages, we explore what is important to newlywed couples as they move forward in their lives together and how marketers can help meet their needs.

Drawing from a combination of internal data, interviews conducted with people who use Facebook in the US and a study with a small number of participants by the strategic agency Firefly Millward Brown, we found that being newly married is a time when most couples are focused on planning and saving for their futures.

Mattresses and mortgages

Last year, 2.6 million people in the US changed their relationship statuses to “Married” on Facebook. Many of these couples are thinking about owning a home and starting a family. Yet for a generation that is still paying off the cost of college, one of the most common worries during this life stage is about being able to afford these dreams. “We’re starting to get that ‘when are you going to have kids’ question,'” said Laura, who is saving up for home improvements. “We coupon, and we’re trying to be more frugal and make a lot of meals at home.”

After the leap

Almost half of the weddings of people on Facebook last year occurred between the months of May and August. The median age of the groom was 28, and the median age of the bride was 26.

Compared to others their age on Facebook, newlyweds are much more active on the platform. Recently married men upload 20% more videos than the average male age 20-30 in the US, and new brides make 30% more comments on Facebook compared to the average woman age 20-30 in the US. Both are much more active about wall posts, with newlywed men posting 40% more than the average male their age and newlywed women posting 30% more.

When it comes to Pages they like on Facebook, immediately after the wedding ceremony, newly married couples like Pages related to love, relationships and their wedding, of course. A few months after the big day, they tend to like Pages related to more domestic topics, including cooking and home improvement.


Takeaways for marketers

A penny saved: During this life stage, when newlyweds are intent on saving for their future, paying off debt, and building a solid foundation, a key way marketers can help is by offering money-management tips. Encourage them to set up money-saving goals, and offer financial vehicles for savings and investments so that they can achieve those goals.

Lining the nest: Settling into a home together — either rented or owned — is time-consuming and costly. This is the moment to offer savings on home furnishings and appliances, tips on home decorating and offers of Internet and cable TV subscriptions. Even for couples who lived together before getting married, this is often a time of big purchases together, such as a car or house.

Setting the table: Creating comforting food at home is another key part of nesting and a way to save money. Encourage newlyweds to venture into the kitchen with healthy food, recipe and cocktail ideas for quick and easy dinners or more elaborate dinner parties.


Note 1: Source: Life Stages Deep Dive: Newly Married,” by Firefly Millward Brown (commissioned by Facebook). In-depth interviews of 6 participants in the US. Dec 2013 – Jan 2014.
Note 2: Source for all Facebook data: Based on stated and inferred data for 2013 (accessed Aug 2014).