​Busy Minds, Fast Fingers: Social Media Usage

Social media can be found everywhere. More often than not, social media is a part of the average person’s daily life. Even people without smartphones or daily access to computers find ways to log into Facebook and tweet on Twitter. The negative side to social media is also a common topic but there are a lot of benefits to every social network such as Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, and Instagram, that can benefit both businesses and the personal or professional lives of people.

According to an article called 20 Stunning Social Media Statistics, “Nearly a quarter of the total time spent online is on social networks” (Jeff Bullas). When given that number it does not sound like social network usage is not too bad but it is mentioned in an article called Who Likes What: Social Media by Demographic, “91% of American adults who are online use social media,” (Sean Work). 91% of American adults who are online across the country partake in social media use. That number alone gives an even better idea just how much of a role social networks play in our lives. To push a little more just how important social media is, “There are now over 800 million Facebook users in the world, with more than 200 million joining in 2011 alone,” (Patrick Salyer). Without a doubt as the popularity of social networking increases, so does the usage of it throughout the United States. Social networking can benefit everybody from the everyday person to the multimillion dollar businesses you find in New York. Despite what the reasons are for being on social media, there an appeal to it across the board.

What makes social networks such an interest to the everyday person is most commonly the ability to connect. According to a blog written by Lindsay Patton-Carson, “It is a quick and easy way to connect with friends and loved ones… For family living miles away, it gives them a chance to feel like they are a part of your life without a plane ticket or long-distance phone calls”. The most common social network that is used for staying in touch and connecting with family and friends is Facebook. Facebook is more popular among the older generation and is an optimal choice because it combines statuses, photos, videos, and a lot more making it a popular network to spend your leisure hours on.

For those who are looking not only for connecting with friends and family but also want to reach out to new people or find out about new events taking place in the city you moved to then Twitter or Snapchat may be of more interest to you instead of Facebook. Twitter is more optimal for this type of usage because of its hashtag feature. You can hashtag anything and find others from all over talking about the same thing as you. Snapchat is also another popular social network that can be used for this because of the option it gives you to add snap chatters nearby and the stories that are displayed on the friends’ page can be personalized to your own city so that you can be made aware of events or things happening around you.

On the business side of things each social media network can offer something that could help your business grow or introduce your product or services to people who had never heard of it before. In terms of Facebook, it allows customers to become more intimately involved with the company and makes them feel more a part of what is going on. Facebook allows a business to create a page where they can post photos, status updates, and links. There is also an option for people to “Like” the business page which then promotes it to their friends and helps get more of the word across to others and attract business. According to Forbes, “92% of marketers in 2014 claimed that social media marketing was important for their business, with 80% indicating their efforts increased traffic to their websites,” (Hubspot). Facebook provides consumers with a personalized experience and is also an easy way to solve any problems the customers have because of the ability to message or post a comment.

Twitter is another social network that is similar to Facebook but offers updates to consumers just a bit faster. Hashtags are a feature on Twitter than can not only help you connect with customers but also with businesses that offer similar services to you. The famous food chain Taco Bell often interacts with tweeters that are talking about their company or product by searching their name and replying to the tweets that show up. There are 465 million users on Twitter and though it can be an intimidating network to breach for new businesses, it offers a wide variety of ways to interact and update users which is an important business tool in the business world.

Often, people of today like to see visuals. If you were to describe a food to someone versus showing them a picture of the same delicious food, most people would get a better idea of what it is based off the picture. This is where the social network Instagram can shine for businesses. Instagram is a great network for those who are involved in the business of retail or anything involving food because the new arrivals, desserts, and other things that are offered can be shown. Instagram, like Twitter, offers the hashtag uses and makes it easier for people to find your company and helps you find other businesses and people who may be posting about your products.

Social media will continue to grow in our culture and will play a big part in the lives of everybody who is online. Between both personal use and business use, there is a social network for everybody where you can find what you are looking for or something that can benefit your business. Though some may think that social media can only bring about negative things, there are so many positives that come from the platforms as well.

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