Just this week, I was having a great conversation with a client about the love they’re getting on Tumblr from their customers. Their customer base skews slightly younger than average – think 15-25 – and we talked about the different social media platforms that were most relevant to their audience. The conversation had a mix of familiar and not-so-familiar names: YouTube, Snapchat, Vine, and Wanelo. We came away with some great ideas for moving forward, but my client seemed a little sad. When I asked what was up, they said, “I’d just gotten used to Facebook and Pinterest and all that. You put all the time and energy into learning about these programs and then everything changes!”
Change is hard, absolutely. New social media platforms do appear on an almost daily basis. But it’s important to remember that some of the major players have been around for quite a long time. Facebook is 11 years old; YouTube is 10 and Pinterest, the baby of the bunch, is already 5 years old.
It’s a very healthy development that we see different platforms, often with narrower, more focused audiences, emerging. Not only do these new platforms offer business owners more marketing vehicles, by their presence, they force more established social networks to continually evolve and improve in order to keep users happy. (For example, check out how Google + has rolled out new features in order to be more Pinterest-like.
It’s not good for social networks to get in comfortable ruts, and it’s not good for our businesses either. Customers don’t pay attention to what’s comfortable and routine: they want fresh, exciting, and engaging. Whether that means using new features on established platforms or embracing new messaging channels as they emerge, change is necessary – and that’s a good thing!