Yes, I said it. This isn’t a prediction of imminent doom, but if your bank or credit union hangs its social media strategy on Facebook, it’s time to diversify your holdings. Especially if you’re counting on it to reach young consumers.
I’m not the only one saying this. Check out an excerpt from the following recent article:
While the social-networking juggernaut continues to chug along among adults, boasting more than 1 billion active users, younger users are flocking to newer, and arguably hipper, networking tools. Sherman Watson of San Francisco said he's noticed a dip in Facebook use by both his 18-year-old son and the younger employees at the retail store he manages. "I think his generation, and definitely the younger ones, view Facebook as boorish and — let's face it — something that their parents use," Watson wrote in response to a Facebook post seeking thoughts on the issue. "Funny how history repeats itself in this regard."
Another story from Business Insider states it more succinctly: “It's no longer all about Facebook.”
Think about it: if you’d stood in front of a young crowd seven years ago and predicted that by 2013 then-darling Myspace would be a cyber ghost town, you’d have been laughed out of the room. But it happened. Today, Myspace is the ranks 223 in U.S. web traffic. Not exactly a mainstream marketer’s mecca.
It now appears as if the same changing of the guard is happening to Facebook. For a variety of known and unknown reasons, young people (a demographic coveted by bank and credit union marketers) are jumping ship for other, more attractive online hangouts.
Your financial institution must heed this evolution. Find out where the fish are going and drop bait there. Research and consider investing marketing time and capital in other venues, such as Twitter, Tumblr, Vimeo, Vine and Instagram.
It’s not time to pull up stakes from Facebook entirely and, in fact, it may remain a desirable place to reach young people and their tragically un-hip parents for years to come. But you don’t want to be the last man standing (and spending) on Facebook if and when it slips under the fickle waves of social media change. Embrace the fluidity of the medium and plan accordingly.