Three social media players who have, are and will change the game
We all know the fundamentals of social media and how it came to fruition. When the web kicked up and got going, we had a number of blog sites which started surfacing, then along came AOL instant messenger, which gave users a chance to chat online with their friends and meet new people should they wish. The first major social media site, I think we can all agree on, was Friends Reunited, which aloud users to locate old school friends and create a profile and connect online for the first time.
Jump forward a few years and we have the birth of Friendster and MySpace. MySpace was the one that kicked off the real interest with young people and social media, a relationship that no one could have predicted the heights that where soon to come. Then came Facebook and Youtube and the whole game changed.
Fast forward to 2013 and there are an abundance of social sites offering various ways of staying connected and sharing content. We have some specialised sites, which tend to stick to a certain format for sharing information. We have sites like the afore mentioned Youtube, which is entirely video based as you know, Pintrest, which is entirely image based and then there are sites such as Facebook, who try to incorporate all of these different elements onto one larger platform. I’m sure the guys over at Facebook will be slightly pleased with how they are doing so far …
Now don’t get me wrong, when I say that things are changing, I don’t mean that Facebook and Twitter are any where near to being a distant memory, far from it in fact, they are both thriving. However, with that being said, their main user age is way up in the 30s/40s and while young people are definitely still using these platforms, there has been a shift in recently towards a more direct, visual and fun way to share information and stay connected.
There are three players who have, are and will change the game. Instagram changed everything with its huge success. It wasn’t an entirely new concept, but it literally exploded onto the scene and was a huge, huge success which led to Facebook buying the site for $1 Bn in 2012. The way you could upload your images and put a simple filter on to make them look more picturesque wasn’t a revolutionary move, but it caught on like never before and people started to take note instantly, bringing a huge momentum push towards the visual side of social media.
Then building on this success came Snapchat. This fun, simple to use platform has seen amazing results amongst young people, I for one don’t know to many people who are app heavy that don’t have this app. Again such a simplistic idea, take a picture or a ten second video and share it with your friends. Its there for the amount of time you chose up to around 10 seconds, however once you have clicked to view and the time runs out its gone forever. This is so popular with younger people, its just a fun and highly interactive way of staying in touch, which is clearly what these people are crying out for.
Now we have a platform called Vine. Vine, is in a way, like Tiwtter’s equivalent to Instagram and has had a tough time gaining traction, but its simple interface and unique way it is run, has inspired amazing creativity from some users and it is finally starting to build up speed, fast. Instead of the standard recording of a video clip and posting it, Vine gives users the option to film frame by frame for up to 8 seconds, which can have some amazingly inspiring and also genuinely fun end results.
With this shift in what young users want, I eagerly await the direction it will go next. I personally use all of these and I haven’t been excited about a platform like I have been about Vine in a long time. Its unique, its celebrity endorsed, its hip and more importantly its fun and anyone can use it to show their individual creativity and personalties I think this is what the younger generation want in the modern social platform, a way of sharing their personal identity and creativity, in an easy and enjoyable way.