Does Lightning Strike Twice in Social Media?

By: Donald Smith

So, Facebook has begun to update its mobile application in several countries with a new feature called, Facebook Stories. This new feature allows users to post photos and videos that can be viewed up to two times by an individual user and will disappear 24 hours after being posted. Facebook has been testing this feature for some time. Back in July, Facebook tested a feature similar to Stories called Quick Updates.  However, the Stories feature sounds fairly similar to another app’s feature… oh yeah, Instagram Stories.

[Facebook Stories Status Bar] By: Business Insider

Instagram’s Stories feature allows its users to post photos and videos that can be view until a 24-hour time period has passed. The app originated in 2010 as a social media network that specialized in the sharing of photos. It then added the Stories feature in August 2016. Unfortunately, this sounds familiar to another app’s feature as well, Snapchat. Snapchat is recognized as the originator of the feature known as Stories. This particular feature, having user-generated disappear after 24 hours, is the entire premise of Snapchat.

Fascinatingly, Instagram has had substantial success since the integration of the Stories feature. The views and posts to Stories on Snapchat dropped by 15 percent, and sometimes up to 40 percent, while views and posts to Instagram Stories grew at alarming rates. Another shocking discovery is the number of downloads for Snapchat’s app plummeted on the launch date for Instagram’s Stories, which dropped into 11th place. Although Snapchat is still popular, by being in the top 25, it has taken a hit.

Now, it is not unknown for social media platforms to adopt features from one another. Interestingly enough, Instagram has done this before. It did this by implementing a 15-second video recording/editing feature. This feature was added to oppose, the video leader at the time, Vine. If you did not know, Facebook owns Instagram. Although Instagram found success from appropriating other apps’ features does not mean Facebook will have the same success.

Facebook is missing a large point, Uses and Gratifications Theory. The theory states users are active participants in the communication process by actively selecting specific media content to consume according to their needs. This means that individuals choose to use certain apps for certain purposes. Facebook’s demographic is moving toward an older audience who are sentimental and believe in the long-term. Therefore, they are not going to find much use out of an app that is the “now” or here today and gone tomorrow. It is Millennials, or 17 to 26-year-olds, who live within the fleeting moment. So, I do not see a reason for Facebook implementing this new feature if their user demographic does not use the app for the gratification of living in the moment. There is no such thing as a one-stop hub for social media.

We Own Social Media. Not You.

Every generation has had their icons. Every time another generation matures, the climate of whatever they are going through at that time produces a special and select race of people. Icons. The most beautiful and accurate symbol of the attitude, mood and spirit of the time. The Baby Boomers gave us Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Barack Obama, George Clooney, Oprah Winfrey and Madonna. Generation X gave us Will Smith, Lauren Hill, David Beckham and Peyton Manning. The things that were accomplished back then were victories that the generation could claim and hold on to. They were the gifts that were given to use by each respective generation and, even after they are gone, they’ll always be a representative of the era that replayed in the catalogue of their memories until the day they died. The world will never be the same to us after the days that we thrived have passed away and we reward ourselves only in memories and reminiscing.

Our time is finally here. 1981-2000 has hit its stride and the transition of power is finally upon us. It just seems like older generations are having problems staying in our plans for the future. I mean, they don’t get us. They keep trying to tell us what to buy, how to live and who to be. We want to do what we want. We don’t want McDonalds in the market anymore. We don’t like Walmart. We don’t want crooked politicians and stop trying to lie to us because we always find out. Also, we’ve figured out your Poker Tells, so…it just isn’t working. Stahp It.We film everything. We meme everything. We tweet everything. We dgaf about race. We don’t care if you’re black, white or latino. We don’t care if you’re a man or a woman. You can sit with us. And watch what you say about one of us, you might have to deal with the whole internet. We entertain ourselves. We don’t like 9 to 5s unless we’re having a good time. We want weed to be legal, not because we all smoke, but we just think people should be free to do whatever the f*** they want. Same goes for gay marriage, abortion, school debt and any major decision that people make in life. They should be free to make it. Free to be happy. That’s just how it is for us. We want to do what we want. Plain and Simple.

Who’s come from our generation? Beyonce did. She revolutionized the music game for black women forever. Mark Zuckerberg did. He was the artist behind a masterpiece that redefined the way human communicate forever. Evan Thomas Spiegel did. He created Snapchat. Lionel Messi did. He’s responsible for erasing the names of so many legends of the past. Steph Curry did. He rekindled the romance between basketball and the fans. We don’t have alot of icons yet, but we’re still young. We have energy for years. The one thing that is abundantly clear is that we’re different and we’re going to break all the records they said would never be broken. We’ll redefine The World while we’re taking selfies, wearing shorts to work and smoking weed with our friends in a packed car. We’re probably in there scheming on multi-billion dollar dreams because we’re starting to realize how strong we are. Don’t you hear the voices from the bottom getting louder? We’re not staying here. We saw what you did to our parents and grandparents. It isn’t happening to us. We’re taking our inheritance, even if we have to by force. We know you guys are stressed out about The World you’re leaving us, but don’t worry about the damage you left. We’ll rebuild it. We’ve waited a long time for this, so we’ll do whatever we have to to finally call the shots in our own world.

Thank you guys for everything you did for us. We wouldn’t be who we are without you. Now, sit back and relax. We’ll give it a try.

 

It’s time to share this…

 

 

 

Social Media Fuels the Beauty Revolution

By Phyllis Lynch

Beauty brands are marketed through various channels to grasp consumers. Social media is an online network that has taken the promotion of these brands by storm. Both major and smaller brands benefit from the ability to develop an online presence without a costly marketing budget.  Platforms like YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat frequently introduce consumers to an array of beauty products.

nickeilgenesisyoutube
Nickel Genesis; YouTube Beauty Vlogger

The cosmetic industry’s target market is coincidently the largest demographic of social media users. This has enabled brands to be in continuous contact with their projected audience. Millennials, born between 1980 and 2000, are the frontrunners for utilizing the latest methods in digital retailing. Neustar surveyed 1,020 purchasers to determine different shopping preferences between Millennials and Baby Boomers. The study also shows that 54% of Millennials consider their mobile device the most important shopping research tool, followed by 31% for desktop, 8% for television and 7% for print.

Often times consumers seek out reviews of beauty products before deciding whether to purchase them, this is where implementing the world’s second largest search engine and social media platform, YouTube, is essential. YouTube is known as the go-to for beauty tips, tricks and tutorials; it is has made learning about makeup more inclusive. Brands are able to gain exposure by offering beauty gurus and influencers incentives in exchange for product reviews. According to a 2015 report conducted by Pixability, there are 45.3 billion total beauty video views on YouTube. Fifty-five percent of those views come from mobile devices, which closely correlates to the percentage of Millennials that mainly use their mobile device as a retail research tool.

6c15846a5638852c2ab46cea2c41c9c5_8c19295b-f448-4719-ac52-91635b94baae_1024x1024
Colourpop Cosmetics’ Ultra Matte Lip swatches

Social media has influenced and encouraged diversity by giving women with darker complexions an outlet to showcase and promote their beauty. These women have been notoriously ignored by the cosmetic industry. Major companies have been criticized for featuring one to only a few deep shades, while offering a range of fair-toned shades. It’s not like the demand for deep toned makeup products is nonexistent, with African American spending $7.5 billion on cosmetic products annually.

Some companies have noted the complaints and made strides to incorporate product diversity, which has earned them rave reviews. Examples of this are L’Oréal Paris’ latest campaign and Colourpop Cosmetics, which grew in popularity because it uploads makeup swatches on different skin tones. Online networking gives women of color a platform to voice frustrations, as well as share beauty tips that would otherwise be inaccessible due to a lack of mainstream diversity.

 

References:

Burstein, Daniel, and Liva LaMontagne, Dr. “Ecommerce Chart: Online Shopping Behaviors of Millennials versus Baby Boomers.” MarketingSherpa. N.p., 28 July 2015. Web. 11 Sept. 2016. https://www.marketingsherpa.com/article/chart/online-shopping-behaviors-based-on-age

Nouril, Perdita. “L’Oréal Paris’ Latest Campaign Breaks down Racial Barriers in Beauty.” The Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group, 30 Aug. 2016. Web. 11 Sept. 2016. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/beauty/skin/loral-paris-latest-campaign-breaks-down-racial-barriers-in-beaut/

Pixability, Inc. “Beauty on YouTube 2015.” Beauty on YouTube 2015 Report. N.p., 2015. Web. 11 Sept. 2016. http://www.pixability.com/industry-studies/new-beauty/

Smith, Stephanie D. “Essence Panel Explores Beauty Purchasing.” WWD. N.p., 18 May 2009. Web. 11 Sept. 2016. http://wwd.com/beauty-industry-news/color-cosmetics/essence-panel-explores-beauty-purchasing-2139829/

Snapchat Usage among International Leaders

By Sherry Long

 

UK foreign office
Source: Burson-Marsteller study

 

Millennials are often portrayed as being the least likely generation to be involved in politics.  A  2014 study from New America, a public policy organization based on the East Coast, cited that only 21 percent of eligible millennial age adults were anticipated to vote in that year’s national elections.

Many U.S. government leaders know that millennial engagement is low. Millennials were the first generation born into the digital revolution.  So young people are constantly on their mobile devices. Snapchat is one of the hottest apps among young millennials aged 13 to 24 years old.  So, America and other government leaders from around the world are using Snapchat to engage this key voting population.

A study by public relations firm Burson-Marsteller highlights how some of the world’s most powerful leaders and governments are interacting with young people.  The Burston-Marsteller study highlights 16 world leaders and government officials using this popular app.

The study found:

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom was the first international government entity or leader to adopt the social media powerhouse.  Its account opened on Sept. 17, 2015 just prior to a Rugby World Cup party.  U.S. President Barack Obama is the first American president to embrace social media. So, it’s no surprise that the White House created a snapchat in early January 2016. It was originally created to give people insights into the 2016 State of the Union address.  Later the White House used Snapchat to accent the 2016 Easter roll featuring President Barack and First Lady Michelle Obama on the White House lawn with participants.

 

Source: Burson-Marsteller study
Source: Burson-Marsteller study

 

The United Nations, Irish government, European Parliament, Argentinian President Mauricio Macri, along with leaders from Holland and Iceland began using Snapchat in recent months.

Snapchat in some ways is a great way for government or influential leaders to correspond with people because it is largely one-way method of conversation. People can’t post public messages or click any buttons to identify if they like or disliked a post. Snapchat only allows people to communicate when a follower is responding privately to the user’s postings.

It is hard to look up who has a Snapchat account.  You have to know a person’s Snapchat handle or scan their snapcode. It’s also unknown how well these governments’ Snapchats are being received by the general population. Unlink other social media platforms, Snapchat does not showcase how many people are following a particular Snapchat account.   A Snapchat score denotes how actively a particular user posts to Snapchat. Engagement rates also let users know how many people are viewing the snaps and watching the entire snap view. For instance, the UK Foreign Office boosts a 60% engagement rate and 90% completion rate of people watching the entire snapchat clip.

Generation Z: The Technology Age

By: Tiara Green

Generation Z, also known as the iGen generation, are those who were born 1995 and after. This generation of young people have grown up with social media and technology. According to genhq.com this age of people are more dependent on technology than any other age group.

By the time people of Generation Z reached their teens, it was abnormal if someone didn’t have a presence on social media or familiar with technology. Whether it be MySpace, Facebook, or Twitter, just about everyone had one. One can also bet that this generation of people had a vastly different childhood and experiences. For example, the fact that there are tablets made specifically for kids shows just how ‘toys’ have changed. People from the generation just 5 years earlier, Generation Y or Millennials, might make the comment of, “When I was a kid I played with a See ‘n’ Say,” because even though they are just one generation before iGen, as children, they didn’t have as much contact with technology.

512JT7CV23L
See ‘n’ Say Courtesy of Amazon.com

 

Vs.

pTRU1-17305500enh-z6
Samsung Tablet for Kids Courtesy of: toysrus.com

According to a study done on the people of Generation Z, the average individual obtains their social media presence as young as 6 months. This is because family members and friends no longer have to wait until a nice time to visit in order to see a new baby, for they can just open up there social media page to see the new edition to the family.

Technology can be a beautiful thing, but there are those who wonder if it has taken away the simplicities childhood and its innocence. There is a worry that children no longer go out to play or enjoy the outdoors like they did once before. This has also been a theory as to why childhood obesity is on the rise according to livestrong.com.

All this simply means is that we must start monitoring the amount of exposure children have to social media and technology, because it can also start to desensitize young people to the issues of the world. It is up to the older generations to make it a point to highlight how important life outside technology can be and how both have their pros and cons. As for future generations, it will be interesting to see what will become a norm for their childhood just because things are changing by the day!

 

Millennials and Social Media News

By David Urbanik

More than ever before, Millennials are depending solely on social media to obtain their news. According to a Pew Research Center Survey released in 2015, about 61 percent of millennials (Americans born between the years of 1981 and 1995) rely on Facebook for news versus about 39 percent who rely on TV for news. Interestingly, that number is exactly opposite for Baby Boomers (Americans born between the years of 1946 and 1964), 61 percent of whom rely on TV rather than social media for news. The gap between these two generations is bridged by “Generation Xers” whose numbers even to about 50 percent who receive news through Facebook or television.

The study also showed that due to their reliance on the consolidating nature of Facebook news, Millennials are less familiar with individual news sources such as The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and The Washington Post, than people in the Baby Boomer and Gen X generations.

Not only are Millennials relying on Facebook for general news but roughly 24 percent of Millennials say “that at least half of the posts they see on the site are related to government and politics,” according to a related survey. While Baby Boomers, on the other hand, are the least likely of the three generations to use Facebook to follow or support news and political organizations. Baby Boomers are also the least likely to encounter political posts on Facebook that run counter to their own political views.

Even with the number of Millennials receiving more political news on social media they are still the generation that is the least likely to be interested in politics. Of millennials interviewed for the first survey only, 26 percent placed politics in their top three most interesting topics. Baby Boomers, 45 percent, and Gen Xers, 39 percent, are still more likely to be interested in politics despite their reduced dependence on social media for political information.

References

Facebook Top Source for Political News Among Millennials. (2015). Retrieved March 20, 2016, from http://www.journalism.org/2015/06/01/facebook-top-source-for-political-news-among-millennials/#a-deeper-look-at-facebook-as-a-source-for-political-news

How Millennials’ political news habits differ from those of Gen Xers and Baby Boomers. (2015). Retrieved March 21, 2016, from http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2015/06/01/political-news-habits-by-generation/