Who remembers ICQ and MSN Messenger? Back in my youth, that was the way friends and family generally stayed in touch virtually. In the early 2000’s things slowly started to change…let’s say for the better! Myspace, Hi5, and Friendster were introduced and it took the world by storm. People were able to generate personal profiles, share photos, music and more with friends and loved ones around the world. Facebook soon followed and eventually took over and blew away its fellow social media competitors and has managed to stay on top! Why? At first, its features were very much like its cousin Myspace. However, Facebook began to grow and develop with the changing times of the social network world and the development of technology. Youtube eventually came along as well. This platform took flight as being one of the first social media sites primarily focused on videos. Finally, people had a place to upload, store, and share videos with friends, family, and the rest of the world. Social Media platforms that are able to consistently stay relevant are those that were able to keep up with the social needs of its users. As accessibility became mobile, the platforms that still exist today are the ones who were able to adapt to that change. Many of us are glued to our mobile phones, so if your platform is not mobile-friendly, or just simply can’t keep up, it may just have a hard time getting off its feet. One great example is Friendster, the social media platform has decided to “take a break” last year in June 2015 as they “rethink their strategic priorities”.
Mobile phones have shifted from being primarily a verbal communication device to a multimedia communication tool. The majority of us use our cell phones more for surfing the internet, updating our social networks, checking mail, snapping photos and videos, and listening to music, rather than actually talking on the phone! As mobile phones continue to develop, apps and social networks must keep up as well! If the social network or application lacks development and change they fall off the popularity wagon. One example is the development of Facebook Messenger on smartphones. This social media messenger platform allows its users to message and share videos and photos with friends rather than text. The benefit in this? Users can share media with one another through this Facebook’s messenger app while connected to Wi-Fi and it doesn’t cost them a cent. The app itself is also free! One of its more recent major updates was the Call feature which allows users to actually Facebook Call their Facebook Friends! People can call one-another from around the world without having to pay long distance fees.
A study on mobile habits of global youth states that college students are not only tethered to their phones, but they are tethered to their friends on phones. They are overwhelming using their phones to stay in touch with friends and family, research, read, network, and share news posts on their social networks. You’ll notice that most people (especially the younger generation) are quite attached to their cell phones and usually find it difficult to even go a day without it! With your mobile phone handy, social media content, sharing, and commenting are available at all times.
Lessons for Others
Today, we can now shop, find jobs, read the news, and share events, our daily activities and interesting finds with just the touch of finger. Who knows what the future holds for us! Perhaps brands will begin to focus on mobile interactivity – where you’ll be able to shop and try on outfits by swiping a finger over your personalized and realistic avatar. Location based content might enable us to receive coupons and sale notices just by walking near the particular stores. Perhaps social media platforms will need to keep up with our ever-changing multimedia tools and will be required to develop an application used for Oculus glasses, and that may even change and develop over time. In time, we may only need to speak to our devices or control our social media platforms with the movement of our eyes. With the rise of the Millennial generation, technology will continue to grow and advance – especially since we are known as the tech savy generation. We depend on our technology, as it creates efficiency in our daily lives.
Today’s world is continuously finding and adapting to new ways of communicating electronically to fit their needs. If a company does not have a social media strategy – specifically for mobile devices they are missing out on the easy accessibility for their consumers. Mobile access continues to be on the rise for consumers. You can either ride the wave, or be left behind in the wake.
If you have concerns as to the accuracy of anything posted on this site, please send your concerns to Peter Carr, Program Director, Social Media for Business Performance.
Rachel Handel, The History and Evolution of Cell Phones, https://www.artinstitutes.edu/blog/the-history-and-evolution-of-cell-phones
(October 2, 2012), This is not Gen-X or Gen-Y: THis is the Tethered Generation, https://tetheredworld.wordpress.com/
Susan Moeller, (October 3, 2012), Mobile Phones put the “Social” in Social Media, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/susan-moeller/new-study-mobile-phones-p_b_1927945.html
Lee Rainie, (February 11, 2010), Vala2010, Connections, Content, Conversation, http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/08/19/mobile-messaging-and-social-media-2015/v