A Guide to Social Media

Social media is always evolving, which is why it is so hard to stay up to date, unless you have a handy guide.
Social media is always evolving, which is why it is so hard to stay up to date, unless you have a handy guide.
Social media is always evolving, which is why it is so hard to stay up to date, unless you have a handy guide.

With so much social media being used in today’s world and new sites and apps popping up all the time, it’s no surprise that Baby Boomers should keep up with this trend and use these online networking tools more than ever before.

They are using Facebook, search engines, smartphones, and other devices to search for information online as well as stay connected with family and friends. According to an online survey of 1,000 people aged 60 to 69 conducted by DMN3, about 82.3% of them are using Facebook more than any other social media network, with 15.5% of them spending at least 11 hours per week on the site.

Other than Facebook, which is the most popular social networking site among this age group, Boomers are also using LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, and Instagram. Retirees are also more tech savvy than ever and understand that social media is for more than just staying connected with people. Read on to learn about the newest and most popular social media sites and what they can offer Boomers.

Facebook

Baby Boomers have been nicknamed “Silver Surfers” because of their growing online presence on social media sites, the most popular of which is Facebook. About 82.3% of Boomers are on Facebook, making it the most popular social media site among this crowd. Retirees love this site because it’s easy to use and navigate and is a great way to connect with family and friends, view status and life updates, and share or post pictures with just one click.

LinkedIn

Active job seekers and employers aren’t the only people using LinkedIn to expand their professional networks. About 2.13% of internet users over the age of 65 use LinkedIn, which is about the same rate as the 18-29 age group, according to Post Control Marketing.

Not only are retirees connecting with friends for fun, they are also connecting with like-minded adults who share their work history. With LinkedIn, retirees can search current or past colleagues, arrange introductions to new friends, find a new job, or search for information about launching a second career in retirement.

Instagram

Although not as popular as Facebook, Instagram is still quite popular among retirees, with 9% of Boomers using the photo-sharing service. This social media platform is basically all about sharing great pictures online to your list of followers. You can also follow other Instagram accounts to view photos, get information about products, or find new ideas with great images on a variety of topics from health and fitness to makeup and fashion.

Similar to sharing images on Facebook, Instagram is a great way for Boomers to share pictures of their grandkids by uploading the image from their smartphone and onto the social media site with a great caption or hashtag.

Twitter

If you can say it 140 characters or less, then Twitter is the social media site you’ll love. These short messages, which are known as tweets, lets users connect with others on the site. Tweets will appear on your feed while your tweets will appear on your followers’ feeds.

Twitter is used in a variety of ways, including staying in touch with friends, keeping up with celebrities and gossip, getting news alerts, or following your favorite brands or companies for latest releases on products and updates. Twitter is often used to promote businesses in order to build a customer base, which makes it an important social media tool.

Pinterest

Social media sites like Pinterest allow Boomers to explore their creative side. They can search for a wide selection of ideas, recipes, and topics with a DIY concept. Pinterest displays everything from gardening techniques to cooking recipes to fitness tips to party themes. Pinterest makes it easy for retirees to search for whatever their heart’s desire is and “pin” it to their online board so they can work on it at a later time.

Snapchat

Snapchat is one of the newest social media sites that is a hit among Millennials but has yet to catch on among Baby Boomers. This messaging app allows users to send “snaps” (photos or videos) through their smartphone’s camera, which disappear shortly after the recipient has viewed them. Snapchat also has many innovative functions, like photo and video filters that, for example, can turn selfies and other images into a puppy’s face.

There are also filters that add funny voices and sounds. Users can also add emojis and stickers as well as share their location via geotagging or create custom filters to highlight a special occasion or event. Snapchat also includes updates like private messaging, sending money electronically, and saving snaps received from friends onto their phone.

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