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Social Media: Different Strokes for Different Folks

A two year old asks “why”?

They want to know why things happen, why things are the way they are. Hopefully, this age is not on Social Media except what their family puts up about them

Young children ask why to find out answers to important questions either for homework or for general living. Their presence on social media is often either game related, school related matters like Yahoo answers for their homework or school or club blogs. They spend a fair bit of time on-line playing games as well as doing project work

From the 13 to about 25, people are asking “What’s in it for me”?

What’s the buzz, tell me what’s happening?” They are busy on the social networks, texting their friend, tweeting and generally finding out what is happening and where it is happening. And they spend time sharing what they are doing with their friends. This group would be on-line 24/7 if they could.

From 25 to 45, most people are on line finding out “How do I get”?

How they get the best bargains, the best deals, more business and more opportunities. They use social media to connect for business and for social. But they are busy so they connect when they want something or have something to share. Work, family and social commitments are handled where possible with social media and mobile phones but generally, they have less time to spend on social media than their younger siblings and colleagues. They share what is happening to sell, buy or find out the latest, greatest most fun things.

And the over 45’s are discovering that social media is a great way to find out what’s happening.

They are reconnecting with friends and colleagues, family and relations with whom they have been out of touch for years. Social media is something done when they have time. They are beginning to understand that social media is a great way to keep in touch with distant family, school friends and colleagues from previous work places. As money gets tighter, the social media sites become ways of connecting for employment and contracts.

Baby Boomers make up the majority of this last group. They are finding that Social Media is a great way of reconnecting. They want the buzz but it is a different buzz from the younger group. The buzz that they want is the buzz of tell me what is happening to you. They sell on-line much as they did offline – Craigslist, EBay, TradeMe and dozens of other auction sites. Most of what they do starts personally and may then develop into a business. Once a Baby Boomer starts using social media fully, they are committed and they will persist until something changes for them personally. They are cautious though and never tell everything through social media. Email, phone and SKYPE become the bigger exchange root once they get past the initial reconnections or connections.

Social media plays a different role for everyone. Much of the interactions depend on the time available and the reason for being on social media. And many Baby Boomers have the time for serious connections and have a need for the connections financially as well as socially.

cc licensed flickr photo shared by edanley

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