Social Media: As Popular As Ever?

Posted by Viktoria Michaelis on July 26, 2015 in Internet |

This is a question which has been aimed at Facebook and several other social media sites – but mainly Facebook – since social media and social networking became a thing: how many members / users do you have? To date, despite pressing demands, no one has been able to answer this question although, in the past, a few have tried and some – notably Facebook – have changed their membership figures to read ‘Active Members’ without actually reducing the numbers.

This is, of course, a thing as far as advertisers are concerned. If a company is going to spend, it wants to know that the money is being wisely invested, and that their business is going to gain from the expenditure. The more members on a social network, the more money is likely to be given out. The more members, the greater the selection, the higher the chance that the right people will be caught in the campaign.

Social Media Popularity

Screenshot Source: Twitter

The thing is, though, no numbers detailing active users are going to be accurate or even helpful. It makes no difference how refined the system may be, the number of active users is going to change constantly and says nothing about their true activity. Some disappear for a day or two, some for several months, while some simply do not post anything, but are still there. There are some who open an account, and then don’t bother with it ever again while others, hidden through a lack of activity, are reading without responding, without being openly active. And there are those who constantly post status updates, Tweets and all the other things the various sites call their posting facilities, but never take a glance at what else is happening on the site, never take a look at the timelines – or whatever they are called – of those who they are following.

On Twitter, as an example, I have about one thousand two hundred followers. Many of those following me are also following tens of thousands of other people – which is a great ego booster for all of them, I am sure. The number is merely a statistic, not a sign of how popular a person is or how well read. The chances are that they do not bother with their timeline at all, but have their real friends on a separate account, well hidden from public view.

So where exactly does the social part of social networking come in to play with such accounts? And how many of those people targeted for advertising even get to see the advert, let alone anything their ‘friends’ and contacts are posting? Is advertising on social media platforms worthwhile in the long-term, or should sites such as Twitter be used as a means of posting status updates and exchanging comments without having to give out any cash?

  • Viktoria Michaelis.

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