Digital Dossier

DIGITAL DOSSIER 8.16.23: Gen Z Trends Are Changing Social Media, Meta is the Apple of Social Media, and Using Social Media For Good

Aug 16, 2023
DIGITAL DOSSIER 8.16.23: Gen Z Trends Are Changing Social Media, Meta is the Apple of Social Media, and Using Social Media For Good

Gen Z Trends Are Changing Social Media

Gen Z is taking an approach to social media that has never been seen before. Rather than focusing on using one “main” platform, Gen Z has a fragmented use of social media where they turn to multiple platforms for various needs. This fragmentation increases the expectations on platforms and from their creators and brands that attempt to share the space. Gen Z focuses on ensuring that the media they absorb is positive, authentic, and digestible. Snap reports that, “Gen Z seeks such spontaneity through content and context—what they consume and where they consume it. They are refocusing their energy and attention toward spontaneous events and real-time sharing. This applies not only to what they create, but also to everything in their feeds, including content from friends, creators and brands.” Gen Z’s approach to using social media will change the way brands engage with their audience by making content feel more

authentic and more platform-specific. This also gives brands more opportunities to reach Gen Z because they aren’t limited to a single platform to do so.

Blanca’s Take: For any brands wanting to target Gen Z, it’s crucial to speak their language on social media, which often translates into “good vibes only,” authenticity, and self-expression. Gen Z are among the biggest consumers of social with YouTube as their most-used platform, Instagram as the second, and TikTok as the third. Though “speaking” Gen Z  is valuable to any campaign, reaching them on the right platform with that correct language is crucial. If there is one thing Gen Z has taught marketers, it’s that the quicker the message is understood, the faster the results for the call to action will be. 

Blanca Assie is a digital Account Executive in Ruder Finn’s Digital Integration Group, and a graduate of Morgan State and Towson Universities. Blanca enjoys social trends, managing projects, and girls night out with great food and drinks.

Meta is the Apple of Social Media

Last week, Mark Zuckerberg announced that nearly half of Threads’ rapid income of users stopped using the app after only two weeks. Many people were quick to jump to the conclusion that this means that Threads is a “failure.” However, Inc. reports that this isn’t necessarily the case: even if Threads only retained 30% of its initial users, that would still mean there are 30 million people on the app – more than any other X competitor. There is something about the Meta ecosystem of apps that keeps users engaged and coming back. Inc. states, “there is a reason three of their apps have over a billion users..”

“Facebook (or, Meta), is like Apple in that it watches to see which features or products start to catch on in the market, and then incorporates them into its own products, but better,” said John Gruber on the Dithering Podcast.

Our Take: The success of a platform hinges on determining what its users will positively respond to and keep them coming back. Social media has become second nature for many, and is often the way that people start their mornings and end their nights. Figuring out what makes Threads users come back is going to be another process, but Meta has proven time and again that they know how to fine tune an app through updates and features and keep users coming back for more.  

Using Social Media For Good

A study was conducted in Egypt to test how successful social media could be in offering assistance to domestic violence victims. Following the pandemic, there was an increase in domestic violence incidents in several regions around the world. Conducted by researchers from MIT, this experiment was designed to determine if some forms of social media advertisements could increase awareness among women about where to find resources and support for addressing domestic violence. MIT reported: “The study found that receiving the videos or reminders increased consumption of media content about the issue, increased knowledge about the resources available, and increased reported and hypothetical use of some resources in response to violence.”

Our Take: The results of this study show that advertisements around certain issues can bring awareness to them and encourage audiences to utilize associated resources. The study offered victims solutions without needing to search for them. The implications of this study are an important lesson about how social media can be used to help people around the world and address an abundance of issues. The success of this study exemplifies social media’s capacity for good, and the ways it can be used help people on a global scale.  

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