24/7 Social Media

Social media is a godsend to marketers, there’s no denying that. For the first time, they’ve been able to communicate their messages directly to consumers without any interference. Moreover, social media doesn’t stop. There is potential there to be able to put out your messages at any time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The ability to be able to target people multiple times a day, all over the world is so invaluable.

However, the problem is that social media can be intrusive; Intrusive, from a consumer’s point of view; Intrusive, in the sense that it is difficult to get away from the millions of companies, people and even friends, who are all competing to get your attention. I began feeling this intrusion in September and ended up deleting my Facebook account, instantly feeling a sense of liberation.

I’ve been talking to anyone and everyone about this… I absolutely love social media, and am a massive advocate of its use; where people say “It’s only full of people telling me what they had for breakfast”, my response is always that you get those people in real life, but you don’t necessarily have to be their friend.

What this change in perception of social media has made me consider is how people who fit my age bracket can sometimes feel pressure to be on social media, from their peers, companies, employers… To the point where people are suspicious as to the reason why a person might choose not to be on social media, or chooses to hide certain things.

Even worse though, I fear that a younger age demographic may actually find themselves bullied in the real world, and subsequently, online, from which there is just no escape. In that situation, you can either deal with it head on, or just switch off from social media completely… Neither of which are particularly helpful.

I’m determined to write up a full piece on my own experience of bullying. But for the moment, if anyone wants an example of what I’m talking about, there is actually a storyline on UK soap, Hollyoaks, which has begun to tackle the issues faced with the omnipresence of social media. A character, Dylan, has created a social media site, DocYou, which begins as a way for him to collect footage for a ‘life in a day’ style documentary film he is making for a competition. Dylan invites his peers to submit videos and updates about their lives for him to cut into one compelling video submission.

Unfortunately though, as ever, things don’t go to plan, and the content becomes more and more personal, to the point where a character, Esther, is trapped in a situation where not only is she being bullied at school and around her friends, but also in the one place where she should feel safe – her own home!