In the past few years social media has become one of the main avenues for marketeers and companies, using platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram to engage with the public. But, with our social feeds increasingly filled with advertised content, promotions and company messages, has the true nature of online social interaction been lost?
What Is Social Media Turning Into?
People today are becoming increasingly aware of the negative aspects of social media, with users very much mindful of their privacy and rights. There have been many examples of companies like Facebook misleading users and siding with multi-national brands and businesses. Which begs the question, is social media becoming less potent?
Surely originally the idea behind websites like Twitter and Facebook was to help people to communicate and share experiences, but our feeds are becoming more and more tailored towards sharing other people’s content. Companies want engagement, reach and return of investment, and interestingly individuals now want the same. Instead of using social media as an outlet; as a virtual diary, websites now act as massive online billboards, especially for those who have been online for a number of years.
But in the last few years there has been a surge of new internet users, who want to share content in a different way, without the social presence and brand-guidelines that come with the big websites. And that’s where Anti-Social Media comes in.
Anti-Social Media websites have started cropping up recently, giving power back to the user; enabling self-satisfaction and anonymity. Website’s like Secret offer a services in which users can share a status to friends and public with complete anonymity, whilst retaining elements of sharing and commentary. What this also does is allow for honest opinions and the removal of selfish posting.
And whilst these alternate online social portals have little or no use for marketeers or businesses, there are important for the public, who are looking for new avenues of online output.
The Balance Between Work and Play
And in terms of Facebook and Twitter, marketeers and businesses may have seen a boom of activity in recent year, but here at EBS Marketing we’re worried that things might change in the near future. We want social media to be a place for everyone to share ideas, but the balance between work and play, and natural and advertorial content needs to be readdressed. Because without the public, there will would be no likes, shares or re-tweets.
But just don’t take our word for it. What do you think about social media in 2014? Love it, hate it? Let us know in the comments below…