Part of the driving force in the early 2000s for the whole push to a social and communal internet was the development of social media. The largest social media platform on the web is Facebook. For the longest time, its number of users grew and grew, across almost every demographic. However, years after it became the dominant social media platform, a recent trend has seen many younger users leaving Facebook. Where are they going to get their web 2.0 fix?
One of the biggest ways that teens are interacting online is through Instagram. However, this example isn’t exactly bad for Facebook. After all, Facebook owns Instagram. It is interesting to note that many teens are treating Instagram like Facebook, posting photos and then commenting. There are probably around 150 million active users and many more less-than-active users currently on Instagram.
Another app called Snapchat has been snagging plenty of teens from their time on Facebook. Snapchat is not owned by Facebook, but it has seen plenty of growth in recent years. The app allows teens to share photos and messages that disappear in a mere 10 seconds, never to be seen again. The company has even released a Snapkidz this summer because their service was growing popular with the younger demographics.
Kik and WhatsApp are also taking over how teens use the social web. These apps make it very easy for teens to set up custom communications to groups of friends and have their own mini-social media platform. It appears that the teens love the flexibility and customization of these apps versus the one-way-only design of Facebook and similar social media that came out of the web 2.0 era.
No one is 100% certain where the future of social media will go, but knowing that the younger generation is shifting away from Facebook is an interesting bit of information. There’s no doubt that Facebook will be looking to come up with something to lure them back – keep an eye out.