Veteran Facebook users still log in, but they post less

That’s one of the findings from a study done by the digital consultant agency Beyond as they look to predict how people will use social media in the future.  And for me, it’s a great insight to why I, like some of you, have been feeling Facebook fatigue.

This idea also jibes with my personal experience lately.  While I don’t see friends posting as often, I do see them interact with the things I’m sharing.  So they’re not sharing as much, but they’re still there.  And as a church or organization, you should be challenged by this insight to post content that sparks people to not just watch it flow by in their feed, but instead take action in either commenting or sharing.

The study, which talked with 2000 active social media users, suggests the trend of logging on often but posting less will continue in the future.  Additionally, Beyond believes sharing will become more selective and more seamless (automated) across platforms.

Selective sharing simply means people are choosing to share certain information with a specific group of people.  Google+ is built around putting friends into circles and Facebook lets you create groups to customize who you send updates to.  While users in the study say this process needs to be simpler, they’re more receptive to selectively sharing.

Personally, one of my least favorite parts of social media is automated sharing where various apps post how far you’ve run, what movie you’ve watched or what song is rocking your world.  The study found two-thirds of users have let apps automatically post to their profile even though 61% find the practice annoying.  The conclusion: this type of frictionless sharing is here to stay but needs massive improvement.

Trying to accurately predict the future of how people share and use social media is not a perfect science.  Far from it.  But I think information like what’s provided in this study help us better understand the trends and gives us insight to what the average active social media user is thinking.  For example, it helps me better understand why I feel like my friends are posting less on social media.  Plus it also gives insight to the rise of Pinterest, and the slower rise of Path, as ways to share specific interests in a more personalized way with specific groups of people.

People aren’t abandoning social media.  They’re just using it differently.  As communicators, we must keep adjusting to these changes—for better or worse—so we’re sharing information the best way we can.

Courtesy Church Juice Blogs


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