The New Digital Revolution: Why Social Media is Out and Entertainment Services Are In

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Aside from establishing new norms, one of the things the ongoing global health crisis has done was to give many of us a peek into what the future would look like for many industries. For instance, the pandemic not only sped up the massive shift to the so-called future of work: remote working, but also accelerated the mainstream adoption of AR and VR, the disappearance of cash and the transition of most — if not all — businesses into the digital space. However, even before the pandemic broke out, there has been another thing that has significantly encouraged many to turn to online platforms: social media.

First introduced in 1997 through Andrew Weinrich’s ‘Six Degrees’, social media sites have successfully evolved from mere platforms that connect people into an integral and inescapable part of our day to day lives. Case in point, today’s social media sites are now marketplaces, effective advertising tools, hubs of vast information, sources of entertainment and a viable way to generate income — especially for influencers, YouTubers and the like. According to an article by the Telegraph, the success of social media can be attributed to a lot of things, including the dramatic improvement in broadband internet over the years, the rise of cloud computing, the emergence of smartphones and mobile internet, and finally, its ability to produce content that can be rapidly shared from one user to another.

After enjoying over two decades of unrivaled popularity, a lot of experts believe that the demise of social media is just knocking at the door. Although the Association of National Advertisers found that 75% of advertisers in the US used social media influencer marketing in 2018 and that 43% were planning to increase spending on it in 2019, the intense impact of the pandemic has changed the overall numbers altogether. As highlighted by an article on eMarketer, among US ad buyers, social ad budgets are expected to decline an average of 28% for the first half of the year. In addition to this, the inability of different sites such as Facebook to remain apolitical and impartial during these trying times has led many to lose confidence in social networks. After all, numerous social media sites have paraded themselves as platforms that will give people a voice and allow them to freely express their opinions.

With social media sites slowly declining in popularity, entertainment services that offer honest-to-goodness content are gaining traction. Take TikTok for instance: as the pandemic persists and more and more people are on the lookout for ways to keep themselves entertained, Business Insider noted that the widely popular social entertainment platform now has an impressive 1.5 billion all-time downloads. In addition to this, its owner ByteDance is now worth $75 billion, making it the most valuable private company in the world. Other applications related to video creation are also gaining traction. There’s Kwai, which is the second highest-grossing photo and video app globally, with earnings approaching $78 million last year.

As the world continues to spend more and more hours on the internet watching videos, apps that focus on content creation are also becoming more in-demand. There’s Likee which has over 200 million users worldwide and boasts a ton of features such as Supreme, Music Magic, 4D Magic, as well as a vast library of dynamic stickers. These features have made it a popular choice among content creators. Users who want to take their videos up a notch can turn to Dare App which adds a whole new twist to video creation through wild, crazy and quirky challenges that will leave anyone rolling on the floor laughing.

The convenience derived from these entertainment services has allowed users to enjoy fun, new content — all from the comforts of their homes. Today’s consumers continue to look for ways to connect with like-minded individuals, but the focus has shifted away from merely connecting with them to sharing experiences with them. Social media has failed to deliver in this respect, and this is why entertainment services have come to rise above them.

Written specially by Irene Chapman for eristica.com

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