We reflect on this year’s trending topics for Social Media Day

We reflect on this year’s trending topics for Social Media Day

Social Media is part of every digitally-minded person’s lives and for some of us it’s the most important one. The ability to quickly, easily and instantly express your opinions and the latest news to the entire world has revolutionised the way we share information, and it’s here to stay.

What is social media day and is it a big deal?

Initially started by online media powerhouse Mashable, Social Media Day is celebrated every June 30 and it’s our time to appreciate how social media has kept us informed, entertained and sometimes baffled in the past year. They’ll be holding events around the world - the real one, that is, not the digital one we spend most of our time in - and are asking us all to take part with the #SMDay hashtag on Twitter.

Social Media isn’t just a way to waste time at work or avoid eye contact while on the bus. It’s huge and getting bigger every year. In April 2018 it was estimated that Facebook alone as over 2.2 billion active users on the platform, easily outperforming other platforms like YouTube and WhatsApp (both estimated at 1.5 billion active users each), Chinese messaging service QQ (780 million) and tech industry favourite Twitter (330 million). This is an active group of people from all walks of life communicating, working, sharing and engaging with each other in a way the world has never seen before.

In Australia, the numbers are obviously smaller but the platforms are mostly the same. Leading the charge is Facebook with over 15 million active users, which is a staggering figure when you consider that the country hosts an estimated 24 million people. Snapchat and Whatsapp are the private messaging services of choice in this country, with five and four million daily active users. Even MySpace gets a look in with 75,000 monthly active users who call Australia home, so perhaps Tom from MySpace still has plenty of friends here – but last we heard, he is retired and living the life travelling the world as a photographer so we doubt he cares how many friends he has.

Trending topics from the past 12 months

There’s always something new to talk about on social media, but here are some of the biggest topics that kept the world spinning over the last twelve months locally and abroad.

#Metoo

Originally coined by social activist Tarana Burke in 2006, the hashtag to lend voices against sexual harassment and assault took off globally in 2017 after actress Alyssa Milano urged people to speak out about their own experiences. It has received monumental international usage by people from all walks of life, showcasing the scope of the issue and giving people a way to press society at large for concrete change.

Marriage Equality

Australia recently changed its laws concerning same-sex marriage equality, and the real-life campaigns from both sides of the debate were matched in greater numbers on social media. It’s a prominent example of how social media can be used to educate people about important issues and connect each other with a greater cause.

One Love Manchester

After a bombing at one of her concerts in Manchester, England, Arianna Grande’s tweet expressing heartfelt sorrow became the most “liked” tweet in history. A charity event was held shortly afterwards and broadcast live around the world on the most popular social media platforms, generating a massive fund-raising effort.

Data Security

Facebook, being the world’s biggest social media platform, was put under intense political and media pressure to safeguard the immense amount of data the service stores about its users. This came after accusations about how businesses could use loopholes in the way data are stored to build profiles on users without their consent. As ever, be careful what you agree to share your information with.

Royal Wedding

Everyone loves a wedding, and everyone really loves a royal wedding. The nuptials of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle turned everyone’s heads recently, being the most watched event so far in 2018. The conversation on social media was flowing freely during the ceremony, with quick-witted creators spawning dozens of memes based on the spectacle.

Of course, there was a constant stream of adorable cat pictures, amusing videos of babies falling over and Rihanna outfit memes along 2018. We can’t wait to see what will happen in the world of social media over the next year and look forward to new technological innovations that will change the way we talk to each other online. Contact iFactory to see how our social media consultants can craft a social media strategy for your business that will get your customers talking.

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