I keep a close eye on social media trends and platforms to ensure I am always maximizing client community building, visibility and message placement opportunities. Earlier this year I wrote about a trend showing how teens are abandoning Facebook, largely because they don’t want their parents tracking their social media activities.
This past weekend this trend was validated by my 17 year old nephew who was visiting New York City from Massachusetts.
We were on the E Train when we both overhead a woman say that she needed to check in on Facebook. My nephew, latest smartphone in hand, looked at me and said that he hasn’t checked in on Facebook in over a year. He followed this by saying Facebook was for old people.
We’ve had many conversations about social media in the past because my nephew has been active on social media for years. He knows Uncle Russ can preach about online privacy and security, online reputation management and best practices for managing videos, pictures and selfies.
This time around the conversation was a lot more fun for both of us because he was so enthusiastic about sharing his current social media likes, dislikes and goals.
Facebook is out because he’s not interested in – and doesn’t want – comments on the content he posts. Snapchat and Twitter are in because he wants to build communities of friends and followers who are really interested in the content he creates and shares.
One of his top goals is to gain social media status among his friends by significantly growing his number of Twitter followers. But he’s definitely not looking for likes or shares on any content he develops and posts. He’s a Snapchat fan because creating and sharing content is easy and fast.
We were on the train for only a few stops. During this time he created and posted three Snapchat videos, each tagged with Hell’s Kitchen, Manhattan and Fun. He had fun creating them and I had a lot of fun watching him speed through the process of creating and sharing quality content.
He never mentioned hiding stuff from his parents as a reason for leaving Facebook. But I’m quite sure avoiding the potential prying eyes of his mom and dad, who are both quite active on Facebook, entered into his decision to leave.
I know his parents don’t know much about Twitter. I would also bet they have not heard of Snapchat. If he is part of the teen trend of leaving Facebook to shield online moves from his parents, he’s likely met his goal – at least for now.
On the other hand, perhaps he’s simply an early user of new social media platforms. Maybe, after finishing his education, he will transform his interest and experience in social media into a career, just like his Uncle Russ. – Russ DeVeau