Social media consists of online platforms where you can meet new friends and find old acquaintances while personally and professionally growing your social network.
But are people using social media as much as before? Do the social networks still genuinely connect us to others, or are they searching for new avenues to promote themselves? And most importantly, will social media ever go away? Let’s find out.
Facebook and LinkedIn Over the Years
Facebook is trying to maintain its audience through VR and live video technologies by gaining Instagram and SMS. On the other hand, Instagram and its mobile marketplace are holding onto their user base. But for how long can they do this? It’s impossible to answer Will social media ever go away without discussing the prominent platforms first.
Compare this to the professional equivalent known as LinkedIn. This isn’t really a great platform, and it’s surprising how they are still going on without any redesign or significant pivot. The usability of LinkedIn is not that praiseworthy, and it feels at least 10 years outdated.
In case another B2B platform emerged that was cooler in terms of look, vibe, and feel, it is obvious that 90% of LinkedIn users would leave the platform immediately. But it’s somewhat like changing banks. No one has come forward to offer anything better, so there is no reason to replace or cope with the hassle of remaking those connections again.
This may be the only reason LinkedIn is staying afloat. Recently, the company talked about “a big new UI design,” but the changes were not that satisfactory. It’s ripe territory for someone to come and accomplish a better job.
What About Twitter?
When it comes to Twitter, the glory days are over. Their user growth has painfully decreased, and it could be heading towards the same social media graveyard as MySpace and Friends Reunited. But in 2016, it gained an artificial intelligence startup called Magic Pony.
Can this change save the 140 characters’ company? Twitter co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey like to believe so. We have yet to view any magic tweets, but the move into Artificial Intelligence showcases that social media platforms are aware of the death knell calling.
The New Generation is Different
While asking Will social media ever go away? It’s important to focus on the present generation. They do not want to share everything and anything with everyone. Rather, they prefer to share in a chat with a selected group or one-to-one. And this is exactly where we can find the answer to Will social media ever go away?
Chat communication has been used for a long time now. First as text messages, then it shifted to online messages, and now, websites enable chats and are part of most customers facing businesses.
However, even this is evolving as we are observing more and more elements combined in this type of communication. Plus, it is no longer human to human interaction.
With the birth of Siri and Alexa, the age of the bot has arrived. In the near future, talking to a bot will be as normal as chatting with a person over a messaging board. It is not a significant jump if you think about it considering how Alexa already does shopping for us.
Imagine asking a simple question, such as “I’m thinking about purchasing a new bag” and the chatbot will reply as “Okay, Amber, what is your price range?”. After some more questions, the chat bot will work out the brand, model, and color of the bag you desire, after figuring out your budget, and what you can actually afford. Plus, it will utilize geo location to only reveal what’s near to purchase.
So, is Social Media Actually Rotting?
Definitely not. It’s only changing similar to any other business or marketing strategy. Social media users have become savvy about how marketing works.
It’s just like when everyone gets tired of the traditional advertising and marketing tactics, like television, print, and radio. If those channels didn’t die, it’s clear that social media marketing will only evolve too.
Part of the problem, and a reason why some people doubt the efficacy of social media marketing, is because they haven’t adjusted their strategy to go forward with time. They are using the same tactics they adopted 10 years ago, which no longer work.
Don’t Look at Social Media in a Vacuum
Social media hardly exists on its own. It is important to consider it as a component of your whole marketing strategy. Think about how you can leverage social media marketing into your overall strategy. How does it fit with online advertising, content marketing, traditional advertising channels, and search engine optimization?
Brands will always have to meet their target audience where they are present online. Social media marketing is not about a single platform. Where you target your efforts will determine where your target audience is present.
And there will always be the latest or up-and-coming platform in the future. TikTok is a perfect example of this fact. Those who were early users and learned how to leverage it are reaping the benefits.
Summing it Up
Most people above 30 years old are used to the social networking side of life. Retweeting, sharing the filtered highlights online, liking others posts, and sharing everything from inspirational quotes to the newest cat video and emojis.
For the current generation, social media will always be present in some way, just not the same way. In short, the answer to Will social media ever go away is a huge NO.