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Bye Bye Facebook…Let’s video chat

Recent reports say that teens are abandoning Facebook in dramatic numbers. They are not deleting their accounts but they are just not using the platform anymore, so for the first time in history, the monthly active users (MAV) in the US have taken a massive hit, especially for younger generations. But where are they going? And, if they are not using FB, where do they spend their time? Snapchat? Instagram Stories? Live streaming on Twitch? Wrong, wrong and wrong. Apparently Generation Z is obsessed with a new trend. They hang out on video-chat apps. Because according to them “it’s the next best thing to hanging out in person”. The proof point of that is that Twenty million people are gathering on Houseparty, a group video-chat app most easily described as FaceTime but with more people.

Houseparty users spend an average of 51 minutes a day on the app, which puts their engagement ahead of Facebook’s 50 minutes (Messenger and Instagram included) and Snaphat’s 30 minutes.

 

What does it mean for us marketers?

This phenomenon is, again, a digitized application of real-life behavior. Social media started as this promise to connect people, create meaningful conversation and bring people closer to each other. If we think about it for one second though, today Social media is not delivering on that promise. All interactions that we have online are through texting, liking, sharing and sending emojis, which are not really human-like behaviors. Now users, and especially the new generations feel the need to go back to face-to-face, back to real-time connection and communication. So, what is really happening here is a phenomenon that is bringing the humanity and the soul, back to social media and digital interactions. The applications for communication are limitless and if this trend keeps picking up momentum, we are going to see a new revolution of all major digital platforms as we know them and hopefully the rise of new forms of marketing channels.

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