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Could Facebook, the king of social media, be giving up its throne?

1. What has caused the drop in Facebook users?

2. Instagram vs Facebook

3. Protecting your data when using social media platforms

4. Top 5 social media data protection tips

5. Social Media for business

The king of social media (Facebook) could be overthrown by alternative social media platforms Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat.

According to BBC News, 49% of US teenagers are steering away from the infamous Facebook platform. This means usage has dropped 20% since teenage social media habits were recorded by Pew Research Centre during 2015.

However, an enormous 72% of teenagers use the photo and video sharing social media platform Instagram. This comes as no surprise as the visual content is at the top of digital trend list for 2018. What is surprising is that despite Facebook owning and operating Instagram, users have not been put off.

So, what has caused the drop in Facebook users and the rise of Instagram?

Whether it is due to privacy rights including photo sharing, the recent Cambridge Analytica scandal, or lack of exclusivity, there are plenty of avenues to explore.

I mean, who doesn’t want to have the opportunity to follow your celebrity idol or just keep up with the Kardashians; after all, Kim is one of the most influential members of Instagram to date.

Instagram vs Facebook

Firstly, let’s address the Facebook Cambridge Analytica scandal, which highlighted Facebook user data and how much is given away by Facebook under scrutiny. So much so, founder Mark Zuckerburg faced the US Senate following recent findings that showed Facebook shared 50 million unsuspecting US Facebook users’ data with London third-party company Cambridge Analytica.

You can read more about the Cambridge Analytica scandal in our recent blog post.

Protecting your data when using social media platforms

Did you know that having your social media account could cause all types of distress for both yourself, your friends and your followers?

Your account could be hacked for forced shares; this is when a hacker shares a link to a website and tags many friends/followers into the post, enticing them to click on the link.

Unbeknownst to your friends/followers, this website is typically full of phishing pages which prompt you to input your personal details, trojan horses and forms of malware which aim to compromise your device to gain personal information.

To help prevent your social media from being hacked, we suggest following our top social media tips.

Top 5 social media data protection tips:

  • Double check your privacy settings on all connected applications
  • Enable 2-factor authentication on applications including Outlook and Gmail
  • Use incognito mode when browsing the internet
  • Log out of all social media platforms when you are finished using themAvoid using personal accounts on communal devices
  • Avoid using personal accounts on communal devices

One of the big concerns for Facebook users is that to use Facebook, you must agree to the use of your photographs. With Facebook being the owners, this also applies to Instagram; but how many Instagram users are aware of this fact?

The Instagram terms of service state: “To help us deliver interesting paid or sponsored content or promotions, you agree that a business or other entity may pay us to display your username, likeness, photos (along with associated meta data), and/or actions you take, in connection with paid or sponsored content or promotions, without compensation to you.” 

So, either teenage users between 12-17 are not aware of this, or there is indeed an alternative reason as to why they favour Instagram over Facebook as a social media platform.

  Following the findings above, I decided to do some further research as to why this platform would be more appealing and here’s what I found.

My evening routine normally consists of getting ready for bed and a scroll through Instagram before switching the light off. Why? I simply find Instagram light-hearted and a good way to spot celebrities and influencers with desirable products.

Speaking to USA Today, influencers describe Instagram with feeds filled with inspirational pictures and a chummy vibe. It's a happy place - or at least a whole lot happier than Facebook.

Instagram’s interface is easy to use, it’s full of positive visual imagery and the lack of drama which can be associated with Facebook makes an ideal late-night scroll.

Instagram has also just expanded its offering with a brand-new TV channel, which acts as a long-form video hub. Designed for mobile devices, its interface can be used both horizontally and vertically.

Despite putting the spotlight on successful influencers like Kim Kardashian, it allows all users to become “creators”, just another point on the scoring board for Instagram.

Headlines from news outlet Mashable state: "I will delete Facebook, but you can pry Instagram from my cold, dead hands." It would seem the opinions of teenagers are strong but our advice to businesses is this.

Social media for business

Do not let the Instagram movement put you off from utilising your Facebook account for business, if anything use it to your advantage.

Follow the social media trends, keep your business page up-to-date with video content, interesting images and above all, make sure your clients are aware of recent GDPR regulations and how it can affect social media platforms.

Keep up to date with the latest news from TSG with our Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.

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