Social Media Isn’t All That Bad, I Promise

It’s no secret social media has revolutionized modern communication. To be honest, I feel funny starting this article out with that statement because of how obvious it is. However, I understand there are still those out there with doubts. Nonetheless, social media has revolutionized communication, and therefore, the way we learn and share what’s important to us. What if the social good was universally important to us?

Social good is what benefits the largest number of people in society. For example, clean air, clean water, clean food, equality, education, etc. Social media has made waves in the sharing of information regarding the social good, but with all the new platforms, such as Tik Tok, there is room for more. Mass media has definitely caught slack for providing a trampoline for where what the “social good” is can be misconstrued.

The Uses and Gratifications theory can be applied to understand why and how people actively seek out specific media to satisfy needs. If we could better understand why and how this is on a platform-specific level, I believe we could make more of an impact.

Studies have looked at usage amounts and initial motivation, but few efforts have been made to determine long-term continuous usage on a platform-specific basis. If we could look at why users use platforms long-term and in what formats they both enjoy and retain information best, we as marketers could potentially help make better strides in informing the public of social issues through strategic content and messaging.

From a bird’s eye view, the new Tik Tok platform attracts humor and creative content, Instagram attracts aesthetic and quality visuals, and Twitter attracts controversial and timely content. Organizations have made efforts to analyze the best performing content and cater to the trends. However, many have also focused on just pushing out large amounts of content to compete with other brands doing the same. Users are overwhelmed with content right now.

By taking a deeper look at each social media platform and taking the approach explained by the Uses and Gratifications theory, we can create more meaningful conversations and “buzz” around topics considered within the realm of social good.

Modernized Mobile Marketing Director | UF CJC Master’s Student