Has Other Social Media Platforms Killed Blogging?

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Before there was Twitter or Facebook there were blogs. Blogs and Forums were some of the first online information sharing platforms that connected people with information and provoked engagement. Although blogging is one of the most seasoned and informative methods to spread information online, the practice has been deemed “Dead” by some factions.  

As stated by John Dvorak, “blogging, per se, was headed in the direction of full-blown, high-end content management that people could use to create entire new publications with, if they wanted to.” While this was happening, Facebook became an easy to use communication system combining community and structure of old AOL, which sucked up a lot of blogger who stopped blogging and who spend all their time on Facebook. The same can be said about Twitter, which became a place where bloggers can express all kind of various opinions in short and to the point messaging.

But is this bad blogs? I mean, if bloggers are jumping to Facebook and Twitter, it could be because they were not true bloggers after all?

Bloggers provide more then quick messages of what they are eating for dinner or what show they are going to watch tonight. Bloggers provide in-depth insight to their lives or developments of times, whether it be for business, social actions, or various other topics.

As stated by Elan Morgan, “Those who declare that the last days of blogging are upon us are more often than not reacting to the decline of their own blogging careers or changes within their corner of the broader community that they find threatening.”

Blogs will survive. It just needs to rid itself of the pretenders in order to really thrive!

What do you think? Is Blogging a dying medium?

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The Real Winner of the Oscars? Twitter.

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If you watched the Oscars this weekend, or on Twitter, or watching the news, it was hard to miss the extraordinary effort and execution of Ellen DeGeneres tweeting the best selfie of all time.

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The selfie includes: Ellen, Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence, Brad Pitt, Bradley Cooper, Angelina Jolie, and others, and was the most retweeted tweet of all time. In less than an hour, DeGeneres had 871,000 retweets, and eventually surpassed more than 2 million retweets since Sunday’s Oscars.

Chase M. on Linkedin notes that brands all over is retweeting the image to take advantage of its popularity and success. Chase calls it “Twitterjacking,” which involves brands latching onto to tweets and using its popularity to promote their own brand. Seems kind of wrong huh? But who can blame them? I would too!

But in terms of social media platforms, were people talking about Facebook on Oscar night? Instagram? Pinterest? Snapchat?

NOPE.

Twitter received all the attention (along with Samsung, but that’s another post), and once again the term “Tweet” and now “ReTweet” are going to become even more popular and significant in our daily vocabulary.

There were many winners Oscar night, but the winner of the social media war?

THE AWARD GOES TO:

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Facebook Purchasing WhatsApp, Is It Good For Digital Users?

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                Last week, Facebook announced it was going to buy WhatsApp for $9 billion. WhatsApp is a messaging app that lets you text, and send pictures and videos to your contacts anywhere for free. As stated by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, “Whatsapp is on a path to connect 1 billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable…I’ve known Jan for a long time and I’m excited to partner with him and his team to make the world more open and connected.”

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                While the purchase of the app was a huge win for Facebook, who was going against Google, is it a win for WhatApp users? As stated by Page, the announcement has not gone well with users, many of whom have threatened to delete the App because they despise the social media network. Why? Because Facebook already collects data on them, and the purchase opens another door for Facebook to learn more, opening access to even more advertisements. According to Eden Zoller, a telecoms analyst at Ovum, “Facebook has gained access to Whatsapp’s large repository of phone numbers, which was a missing link for Facebook’s user information. The access to phone numbers now bridges the offline and online worlds of Facebook users.”

At the end of the day, all this signals is that Facebook will learn even more about us, and our privacy will most likely continue to be infringed upon when we might not even know it.

My advice? Stay updated on those user agreements to ensure your information is not being spread to other organizations. Because we are itching closer to living in the movie Minority Report, and the next time you walk into a Gap store? A computer will ask you if you liked the sweater you bought online last week.

Is Facebook Still Cool?

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Facebook is celebrating 10 years-old this year. A huge accomplishment, especially when it had many skeptics in its early years. Most people, who used Facebook when it was exploding, are probably most likely using it today. But like any company or platform that has been around for a long time (Hi! MySpace) is Facebook still cool for teens or is it something they consider their parents are into?

According to iStrategy Labs, teen usage of Facebook has significantly decreased by 25% over the last three years. As stated by Min, a reason for the drop is that Facebook is no longer exclusive to teens.  Parents, grandparents, and teachers are now hopping on the Facebook bandwagon. Teens are all about privacy, especially from authority figures, and when parents and grandparents start to send them friend requests? Facebook becomes a little bit uncool.

Teens are flocking to new platforms like Instagram and Snapchat. The majority of Instagram and Snapchat’s users are in the 18-29 age groups according to Pew Research Center.

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Does this mean the end of Facebook? No. The company is still valued over $140 billion, and has a huge worldwide reach audience. What this mean is that Facebook needs to figure out a way to make the platform desirable to all demographics for the long haul. I suggest that they look to Apple, and their turnaround because who would have known in the 90s that Apple would be the company that is cool to everyone.

THE Nielsen Report: Digital Consumer

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Well everyone, Nielsen released their highly anticipated digital consumer report today, and the report provide great insights on who exactly is the digital consumer today. According to Nielsen (2014), today’s consumer is more connected than ever, and has more access and deeper engagement with content and brands thanks to digital devices and platform innovations. Content that was once only available through traditional channels can now be accessed through digital devices, which is one of the main forces for media revolutions and blurri             ng of traditional media classifications.

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Device ownership is driving the digital landscape with more consumers today owning devices. Plus, consumers have more choices for how and when they want to access content, especially when it comes to researching and purchasing goods and services.

According to Vala Afshar, 2013 marked the first time that smartphones outsold regular phones, cementing the shift to mobile. Companies need to invest in adaptive websites and more mobile friendly user experiences if they want to engage customers and remain relevant. Mobile devices is going to be the primary way we access content, which mean brands need to update their digital capabilities and create content that is creative, enticing, and communicates messages effectively and timely. Because like any other digital content, you only have a seconds to pull in your audience and you are only a click or swipe away from being ignored.

Highlights

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The Hispanic demographic consumes more digital video than the national average, and purchasing smartphones at a quick rate, making them an influential demographic in the coming years. Another interesting highlight is where we access social media these days, with 48% of moms accessing social media in their car, half of adults between 25 to 34 use social media at work, and young adults 18 to 24 are twice as likely to use social media in the bathroom.

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Mobile is Growing, Growing, Growing!

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Mobile shopping has skyrocketed over the last couple of years. According to Business Insider Intelligence, Amazon, eBay, and Walmart have embraced mobile as the latest sale channel, and have made it so compelling that mobile shopping sometimes rivals social networks. Amazon is such a power house on mobile that it sees more mobile users in the United States than Facebook. Amazon, eBay, and Walmart treat mobile as a means to engage with consumers with app loyalty programs and image recognition technology. eBay mobile customers spend more than 108 minutes a month on their app, and 15% of United States mobile population access Walmart on their smartphones. Each brand uses cleaver ways to attract and engage. eBay enables privilege user engagement, Walmart offers convenience, discounts, and in-store features, and Amazon focuses on optimizing user experience.

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Who exactly is the mobile shopper? According to Nielsen, women make up the majority of household purchase decisions, but men are equally active when it comes to mobile shopping. Women are more likely to use their device for physical purchases, and the tech savvy younger generation are more likely to shop through their mobile devices. Also consumers with more disposable income tend to be active mobile shoppers, but households that bring in below $50K have also grown in mobile usage since 2012.

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Mobile will continue to grow and may soon outpace PC shopping in the near future. Opening new marketing strategic opportunities  for brands.

Do you think mobile will one day be the primary way we shop?

The Rise of Instagram

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Over the past couple of years, Instagram has taken the social media world by storm. The picture and video sharing platform has transformed the way young people share and communicate. According to Nielsen, Instagram had the largest growth among social media platforms with a 66% YOY and over 32 million users on mobile devices. According to Mark Walsh, we can look at a shift to single-purpose or messaging apps for the reason of Instagram’s growth.

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With such success, Instagram will start to place advertisements on its platform this year. But before brands start to buy ads on Instagram, they need to understand who Instagram’s audience. Cooper Smith of Business Insiders states that more than 90% of the 150 million users are under the age of 35, largely made up of urban and youthful demographics, and is female driven.  This makes Instagram attractive to apparel, entertainment, and media brands who cater to the 18 – 24 demographic.

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Instagram has a long way to catch up to the monster that is Facebook, but through its partnership with the popular platform, we may begin to see a shift in terms of demographics of who uses each platform. It was not too long ago that Facebook was the cool kid on the block who was on the road of topping MySpace. Is this Instagram’s destiny? Who knows, but one thing is for sure is that the platform is on the way up, and will affect the way we connect and share for years to come.