Do you remember a time when social media was not a thing? Where it did not consume most of your day or a few hours distracting you from the world going on around you? I do. It is strange to think back and wonder, how did we do it? I will be the first to admit social media plays a big part in my daily life and as much as I would like to limit my consumption of it, it just seems impossible. I access it now without even thinking twice about it whether it be to communicate with someone for entertainment value or finding out more about a current event the interests me. I cannot say Google or any other search engine has been kicked to the curb, but the information and the value I get from social media is just quicker.
So how has social media changed the world?
For starters, our interaction with others has evolved. The buffer of a screen has allowed us to reach out to anyone all around the world within seconds. We can maintain relationships and create new ones. We can keep family members updated with our lives without having to call one another. You can reach out to someone with a message via Facebook and receive a quick response without actually having to physically ever speak to one another. While I stilly enjoy communicating with my friends and family in person, it does provide me with the chance to stay in touch with them more often than I would without social media.
Our source for breaking news is no longer being relied on the arrival of the morning newspaper or your local TV news station interrupting your favorite shows. 50% of people learn about breaking news through social media now. With social media, we are able to talk about issues, events, or any topic that is relevant while it is happening and create trends making it easier for us to find the information we want faster than ever. Most of the time, we do not even look for news, it finds us. We want instant results and social media does that for us.
How we look for jobs and apply for them has changed too. Remember the days of having to personally hand a resume to an employer or looking through the job section in the newspaper to find employment? It has all gone digital now. Creating an online professional profile gives college students and people who are seeking employment a way to put themselves out there without having to approach an employer anymore. About 80% of companies are using social media like LinkedIn to recruit new employees. While there are great job searching websites out there, 1 in 6 job seekers admit that social media has helped them find their current job.
Even the law enforcement is using social media to help them solve crimes. It sounds crazy, but people have been convicted because they post about what they did on social media. People are incriminating themselves by posting statuses, photos, and videos without thinking about the repercussions. Back in 2011, the NYPD added a Twitter tracking unit and other social networking sites to arrest criminals because they bragged about it online. Maybe it is just me, but if you do not want to get caught for something you did, don’t post about it for all your friends and the police to see.
When it comes to marketing and advertising, it is no surprise that social media has changed how we reach out to consumers too. We live in the digital age. Marketing and advertising is no longer left to newspaper or television ads that have a time limit. How many people do you know who still read the newspaper or watch commercials? Most people skip them now or do something else during commercial breaks. I’m not saying you should not utilize these tools, but if your business is not on social media like the rest of the world is than it is time to rethink your marketing strategy. When you have a digital presence, you are branding yourself and promoting your service and products 24/7.
Whether you enjoy social media or not, it is clear that it has changed the way we live and continues to do so every day. To learn more about how we can help evolve your business’s digital presence through social media, contact us at 314-884-1192 and let us #TurnTheLightBulbOn.
By: Megan Tschopp | Twitter: @MeganJanina