I like to pass these articles along when I find them, for I remain convinced that social media is absolutely essential as part of the Church’s total effort to use all available means to spread the Gospel and to extend the Church’s ministry to her members. Here’s another one of those articles:
Baby Boomers are jumping on the social media bandwagon at a rapid rate.
Previously viewed as laggards, those over 50 are now one of the fastest growing segments in social media adoption. In the last year, social networking among 50-plus Internet users nearly doubled — from 25 percent to 47 percent, according to a Pew study. That’s compared with an increase of 10 percentage points among Internet users 18-29 years old, whose membership level is now at 86 percent.
And this is no small market segment:
These new “Social Media Mavens” are heavily connected, exploring and expanding their networks, reports CPH Research.
They have more frequent contact with individuals across all types of groups within their social network, not just family or neighbors, but issue-oriented groups and co-workers as well:
- 73% responded ‘People often come to me for advice’
- Not merely amassing ‘friends’ or ‘connections’ they are communicating regularly.
- They also have more face-to-face contact and use smart phones more than other Boomers or Generation Jones respondents (78% responded ‘New technology plays an important role in my life’)
- They are equally likely to be male as female, which defies the stereotypical female profile of the voracious social media consumer
- Of this Social Media Maven group the majority are still working, more likely than the other segments to own their own business, most likely to engage in volunteer activity and to have the highest household income
- Social Media Mavens are more likely to try new products, technologies and seek new experiences. They are recommenders who embrace the role of technology in their connected lives
If you’re reaching out to people over 50 social media should definitely be part of your PR plan.
Interesting post from Paul Steinbruck at OurChurch.com. The Alva Review-Courier, based in the megalopolis of Alva, OK (pop 4,848) published an article today entitled Social Networking Sites Benefit Pastors, Congregations in Many Ways. The author if the piece, Kathleen Lourde, interviewed several pastors in Alva as well as some guy with the same name as me.
The article explains many of the benefits to pastors using social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Twitter. Those benefits include:
- Helps the pastor listen – So he knows more about what’s going on the lives of the people of his church.
- Humanizes the pastor – “it makes [him] seem like a regular person rather than a person who’s super-holy” (Did I really say “super-holy?” LOL)
- Helps church members feel more connected.
- In particular helps students who go away to college to stay connected to the pastor and church.
- Enables the pastor to quickly get a message out to many people in the congregation.
- The pastor can initiate spiritual conversations among members during the week.
- Helps the pastor connect with other pastors to encourage & pray for one another.
- A pastor can counsel people immediately online.
Any other benefits you can think of? I’d say the article makes a pretty compelling case for pastors to use social networking tools. What do you think?
Consider what this recent study has to say to the Church’s use of social media. HT: WordPost
Here’s a clip from the article:
“Social networks are creating a monumental shift in how people communicate with each other and with brands,” said Michael Kahn, SVP of Marketing at Performics. “The results of this study can help marketers better understand where and how consumers interact with social media sites and what types of offers and communications engage them and motivate them to act.”
The study also shows the immense opportunity for engaging with consumers on specific social networking sites:
- Forty-six percent of respondents say they would talk about or recommend a product on Facebook
- Forty-four percent of Twitter users have recommended a product
- Thirty-six percent of YouTube users say that they have gone to an online retailer or ecommerce site after learning about a brand on a social network site
“The numbers are staggering. One in four respondents have four or more active social network accounts and more than one quarter access their Facebook or Twitter accounts at least once a day via their mobile phone,” notes Scott Haiges, President of ROI Research. “We knew that these sites are extremely popular for socializing, but the level of interest for branding and promotional marketing content is surprisingly large.”