Is social media appropriate for everyone?
Should every person use social media on daily basis?
How does social media impact our lives as human beings?
Can we live without social media?
The year was 1995 and I was about to be a freshman in high school. This thing called the internet was gaining a ton of popularity. Being an avid tech geek at heart it quickly became an apparent companion of my daily life. I found myself spending more and more time on the internet including networks such as AOL. Yes, those were the days of online chatting and A/S/L. Some of you may recall. Way before the social media boom took over.
Fast-forward several years and people were buzzing about MySpace and Facebook. While many were quickly adapting to MySpace, even more began to take curiosity in this platform called Facebook. So much that business and marketing gurus labeled it as the innovator of social media. Something that was about to forever change the way humans interact, communication, and socialize.
It is absolutely ludicrous to think that I’ve been in the social space for over a decade and a half. A bit scary actually when I become a bit more subconscious about it. Mind you that it was way before social media was even thing.
- 56% of Americans have a profile on one or more social media networks. That is roughly over 150 million people. (Source: Convince & Convert)
- 55% of Americans between the age of 45–54 have a profile on a social media network. Did you think early boomers are incoherent to social media? (Source: Convince & Convert)
- Facebook dominates the digital audience particularly in the 18–34 age group. (Source: SmartInsights.com)
Well there are some fun facts for you. Social media is like a culture of its own. Have you realized that yet? There are 10 reasons I believe we all need social media in our lives. Regardless of who you are or do for a living.
The smart phone has truly revolutionized the way we communicate as human beings. What used to be a quick call to catch up has now turned into a tweet, status update, pin, connection request, or even a gram. We have control over communication in the palm of our hands.
Technology plays a huge role in digital communication. It is simply how most of us communicate these days.
Are you using social media for business purposes? Majority of U.S. companies are using 1 or more social media networks for business endeavors. Social media platforms provide targeted access, awareness, interest, and invoke intent to buy. Social media sells stuff although most companies go about the selling process in the wrong way.
These days selling in general is about proposing an added value proposition and boasting emotional engagement. With social media that has to be done in a more of a organic fashion. This is where a lot of businesses fail with social media.
- 84% of CEOs and VPs say they use social media to help make purchasing decisions. (Source: Business2Community)
- 38% of organizations plan to spend more than 20% of their total advertising budgets on social media channels in 2015, up from 13% a year ago. (Source: Brandwatch)
- Only 20 Fortune 500 companies actually engage with their customers on Facebook, while 83% have a presence on Twitter. (Source: Brandwatch)
3. Customer Service
This is a fairly big reason why businesses specifically should be using social media for customer service reasons. Companies like AT&T, Verizon, Samsung, Southwest Airlines, JetBlue are amongst some of the most reputable companies that leverage social media for customer service reasons.
From a consumer standpoint it is far more convenient and easier to seek support or service via a social media channel than to deal with pesky phone calls. As human beings our attention span is shrinking drastically and we simply do not have the time or patience to deal with India-based support.
Businesses that are not utilizing top social media channels such as Twitter or Facebook for customer service are probably missing out imperative customer response.
Patience is extremely overrated. Our attention span as human beings is approximately 8 seconds. The continued pursued of efficiency in doing things quicker yet more effectively is something we all strive towards. Social media helps us be more efficient in our day-to-day endeavors.
Want to find out the outcome of election results? Hop on Twitter and check the conversations or trending hashtags. It is typically where such news tends to break faster than any other form of traditional media.
Struggling to find a dinner idea? Hop on Pinterest and search for cooking recipes. Pinterest has become the unofficial cooking book in our family.
Looking to buy the new iPhone 7 but not quite convinced if it’s the right fit for you? Get on Facebook and seek input from your friends.
The old ways and methods of finding information on products or services are inefficient. Social media is the liaison which offers efficiency for consumers and businesses likewise when it comes to finding information.
Finding inspiration through social media may sound a bit rhetorical. Although in the reality of things there is plenty of inspiration that one can gather from social media.
For instance, if you are a writer/blogger than Twitter might be beneficial for inspiration. Sometimes I find myself cruising the trending hashtags to identify inspiration for my next blog post.
Perhaps you are a creative and looking to expand upon your creative side of things. Pinterest is a great resource to find creative things. Personally I am a bit more analytical so any time I’m seeking creative inspiration, Pinterest seems to be my first stop.
This is a fairly big reason as well. Simply because a lot of people are constantly interested in gather perspective on key subjects. Whether it’s the recent election results, opinion on a product/service, or simply validation, perspective matters to us.
Everyone sees things through a different lens. Social media allows consumers and businesses to identify perspective.
For instance, if you are consumer than perhaps you may be interested in identifying perspective on why Donald Trump won the election vs. Hillary Clinton. This seems to be one of the most talked subjects currently within the social space.
If you are a business than you may be interested in seeking customer perspective around your product or service. Surveying your customer base on social media is a great way to gather perspective.
Social media has always been about community cultivation. Regardless of what channel you are using it brings people together. Twitter plays a vital role in this although other social channels such as Snapchat and Instagram are bringing people together.
If you are using social media for personal reasons than it’s a great opportunity to surround yourself with like-minded individuals. These are other individuals who share similar mentality and methodologies.
As a business, social media platforms are phenomenal avenues for community cultivation. Every business needs an audience. Without an audience you don’t have a customer base.
Social media platforms are ideal for maintaining connectivity to the outside world. This one is literally a no-brainer. News tends to break on Twitter quicker than TV consistently. Newly emerging trends and patterns in the marketplace occur on Pinterest, Facebook, Snapchat, or even Instagram. In 2015 some of the most popular Vines were considered as the newest/hottest 30 second TV commercial.
Maintaining connectivity with the world is intricate. Especially if you want to remain relevant. The beauty of it is that remaining connected can be accomplished through the palm of your hand and in the spur of a moment.
If you are a business it is especially important to maintain a sense of connectivity with your target audience. This is precisely why social media monitoring should be factorial within any successful holistic social media strategy. It allows businesses from all industries and verticals to maintain a steady pulse on the marketplace.
Social media usage is great for influence purposes. Perhaps you are a thought leader seeking to amplify your visibility in the social space. Platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Snapchat, and even Instagram are excellent avenues for this. Social media channels amplify individual brand visibility to the masses.
This is equally true for personal and business reasons. Remember to always respect the platform and its users though. All thought leadership and messaging is not universal to each social media platform.
Do we all need social media in our lives? Yes, I think so! As much as we’d like to think that we are not exposed to it there are many reasons why you should strongly consider using social media. Regardless of whether it’s for personal or business reasons there is value, connectivity, community cultivation, and communication opportunities.
This article was originally published on Medium.