Is Social Media Just a Fad?
With over 10 years of online growth, the question: ‘Is social media just a fad?’ Is still a topic of conversation within the world of business. With Linkedin and MySpace being founded in 2003, followed swiftly by other giants such as Facebook and eventually Twitter, many businesses still question whether social media is a fleeting craze – or really useful at all. Is there a right or wrong answer? Well… yes there is. The answer is no, it’s not a phase. Social media is constantly growing in numbers and has made a huge statement within our society and on a global scale. It’s here to stay because already so many of us depend on it for communication. Some businesses purely operate through their social media pages! So, against it or not; social media has gradually become the new way we communicate.
Let’s breakdown some of the statistics, such as; 90% of buyers trust peer recommendations over advertisements. What exactly does this mean? Well, if you saw an advert about a chocolate bar during the break of your favourite show, you may choose to purchase that chocolate bar and arguably, if you like the show, by association, you would connect the chocolate bar with the ‘good feeling’ you get watching the show, even if you made that connection subliminally. If the advert was good too – then the chances of you wanting that chocolate bar would increase. However, if a friend posted that same advert on Facebook and captioned it as the best thing ever, you are even more likely to purchase that same exact chocolate bar because it’s linked to your favourite show AND your friend has recommended it. This coincides with the last statistic and I must admit this shocked me. Over 50% of the world's population is under 30 years old. The largest and most active demographic of social media users are also the majority of the world’s population. Think about that for just a second. Now ask yourself the question, is social media just a fad or is it possible that the next generation have redefined the way we communicate? Will this be inherited by the next generation and be redefined once more? Of course it will. It’s human nature.
Does this mean that Generation X is being left behind? Before you answer that you should read this next statistic. Grandparents are the fastest growing demographic on twitter. This proves that technology and social media isn’t just for Generation Y and beyond. It’s about how people are using social media to communicate. During your next marketing campaign or social media post think hard about whom you want to target because social media isn’t just used by one generation. Take a look around your offices and I am willing to bet at least one person in each age group uses Facebook regularly. I’m part of Generation Y and fortunately it’s not all about us.
This leads me nicely on to the next statistic (not a coincidence); Facebook has a larger population than China. Now: I did look into this one a bit more in-depth and the figures are close. China has 1.339 billion inhabitants and Facebook only a little short of 1.370 billion. That is an enormous amount of people on one social networking platform and how many of those new-borns will join social networking as they grow up? I am willing to say the majority. If you are a business and are still yet to jump on board the speedy skies-the-limit-social-media-express, you may want to hurry up and get your ticket. Don’t get left behind because it’s forever growing.
This statistic I found more interesting than most, last year 1 in 5 Couples met online. This probably applies more to Generation X and Z but that means it’s likely to become the most common way couples meet. Online dating is constantly growing along with social media; in fact most of them use social media to find you matches. Let’s take Tinder for instance, the largest growing mobile dating app; you cannot have a Tinder account unless you have a Facebook account. This allows for easy sign ups and huge amounts of potential for Tinder sign ups because Facebook is incredibly large. As I said before, social networks have changed the way we communicate and it has allowed for online dating to become the norm. How do you feel about the on-going debate now? Has this made you change your mind? Are you going to start using social media more effectively? If you want help from MAXX we run several social media training sessions and that is just the beginning, please do get in touch. Erik Qualman and his amazing YouTube channel, fantastic videos with great statistics, provided these facts. Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog for more topics around social media. Like us on Facebook and follow us on; Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Tumblr.