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The Evolution of Social Media

The world we know today would not exist without social media. I can say that I am the last generation to remember a time where social media was not used by everyone. My family was a little behind on getting a computer, but I don’t really remember social media becoming popular with kids my age until around 2006 and 2007. This does not mean social media did not exist then, it was just completely different than it is now. Kids that I babysit that are five years old know what Instagram and Vine are.

According to this infographic, here is a brief timeline of social media over the last ten years. Myspace was one of the first major social media platforms and it was formed in 2003. In 2004, Facebook was founded, which is undeniably still one of the biggest social media platforms today. Youtube and Bebo followed in 2005. 2006 was a big year for social media; Facebook opened to the general public, Twitter launched, and Google bought Youtube. In 2009, Facebook introduced the like button and Youtube surpassed a billion views a day.

Social media has moved from mostly personal use to a marketing tool for brands. In 2011, Twitter introduced sponsored tweets, where brands or people could pay to have their tweets show on up people’s timelines, even if they were not following that account. Another big platform to launch in 2011 was Snapchat, which is arguably one of the most social media platforms at this time. 2013 also introduced Vine and Instagram, two apps that are also on the rise, which many brands are taking advantage of to use as a marketing platform.

Today, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, and Snapchat are all in the top ten social media platforms and many brands have taken advantage of their popularity to market their brand.

Social media has changed drastically over the past ten years, and I am guessing that the next ten years will bring even more changes. I am predicting an increase in visuals and interactive content along with more interesting and relevant content from brands in order to more effectively reach their target audiences on social media.

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