In my most recent browsing, I’ve noticed that there’s messaging in the social media universe about Facebook being only for “old people.” Is this true? Thankfully, we live in a world where every rumor can be easily proved or disproved (in theory).
First off, let’s define the words “old people.” Social media has always been targeted towards the “younger folks.” In technology circles, this means teenagers and young adults under thirty. Take a look at the graphic below.
Let’s focus on the “male” category. According to this study, only ten percent of the users on Facebook are men under the age of twenty-five. Thirteen percent are between the ages of twenty-five and thirty-four.
According to the latest numbers, Facebook has 2.2 billion users. 22% of that number (eliminate the 13-17 year olds) is over 500 million men under thirty-four years old. Keep that number in mind. Now look at the next graphic.
Sixty-one percent of Instagram users worldwide are between eighteen and thirty-four years old. With just over 700 million users total, assuming roughly fifty percent are men, that adds up to slightly over 210 million globally.
What does this look like in five years?
Instagram, which was launched in 2010, added 100 million new users since August 2017. Facebook, which was launched in 2002, grew 3.2 percent last year, an increase of seventy million users. Taking their current growth rate into account, Instagram should surpass Facebook (their parent company) in users within five years.
Looking forward, as we do with the sprig of Acacia, for us to experience growth as a fraternity we must learn how to adapt to this trend now. Young people are more receptive to images than they are to words. As a writer, that makes me sad, but that’s a topic for another day. For now, let’s focus on the facts and what they mean.
Does this prove Facebook is for old people?
I’m fifty-two years old and I don’t consider myself to be an “old” person, but in the world of internet marketing I am ancient. The primary consumer on social media is the young adult under thirty-five years old. That also happens to be our target market.
I did an LOI presentation last night in the 12th District and we spoke quite a bit about how to reach the younger generation. The general consensus was to “reach them where they’re at.” According to these numbers, Instagram is one of those places.
Of course, we don’t want to neglect Facebook marketing. There are millions of potential candidates for Freemasonry using Facebook every day. To learn to reach those users, view our module on Social Media Marketing.
Our Next Step – Learning to use Instagram
Instagram is a fairly simple application, but I’d recommend that you watch the video below, even if you think you don’t need to. I’m fairly tech savvy and do internet marketing for a living, but I still learned a few things from this tutorial.
Marketing your Lodge with Hashtags
David Cox, in the video above, does a tremendous job explaining how to use Instagram. He also gives a brief overview of what “hashtags” are. For the “old people” reading this (of which I am one), I hope you found that to be helpful.
So what are hashtags? Think of them as topics. On Twitter, and now on Instagram, Facebook, and Google+, hashtags are used to group content or images to make searching for common interests simpler.
How does this work for marketing your lodge? You may have already figured it out. When you post an image on Instagram, hashtag it with the name of your lodge, your community, and a Masonic hashtag of some kind.
For instance, for the photo below, I might use the following: #GrandMaster of #Masons in #Massachusetts visits #CharlesWMooreLodge in #Fitchburg.
You’ll notice that there are no spaces in the hashtags #GrandMaster or #CharlesWMooreLodge. This is intentional. Hashtags need to be a single word or phrase, with no spaces. Keep this in mind when you create a hashtag for your lodge.
Once you have a hashtag, use it everywhere. Google, according to the current buzz in the social media marketing world, is now including hashtags in their search algorithm, so it could send you to the top of the SERP’s in your community.
The Difference between Instagram and Pinterest
I’ll be spending a good amount of time this summer researching various ways to market your lodge using image-based applications. Next on my list is Pinterest.
Look for more details next month, but here’s a tip for right now. Pinterest is a shopping application. According to the brief dive I’ve done into its capabilities, I have learned that pictures of human beings do not work well on that platform. Save those for Instagram. If you’re selling merchandise, use Pinterest. I’ll teach you how in a few weeks.
In the meantime, check out my new Instagram page: https://www.instagram.com/hiramsedge1797/