Is Facebook Dead? (Hint: it’s not…)

facebook-jaggedSocial media has changed the way we interact with each other and the world.  I saw a story on the news today that people are angry at Facebook for allowing false news story to be posted on the site.  The problem?  Those false news stories, some are saying, had a negative impact on our recent presidential election.  How true that might be is unclear, but it does speak to the fact that social media has a huge influence in our world.

I received an email this week from Jon Acuff with the title Is Facebook Dead?  I thought what he shared was pretty interesting in regards to how Facebook stacks up in numbers with other social media sites.

Near the beginning of this year I posted some information I read about the State of Social Media.  I have also shared an article about the growth of Instagram and other social media related topics.  I think it’s interesting to see what’s happening with real numbers compared to what other people are saying about the power and reach of various social media platforms.

Basically, that’s what Acuff shared.  In his article he gives information about the same article he posted on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.  While all of those social media sites showed good engagement from those who saw it, Facebook had the largest numbers far and away.

Here are the numbers:  On Facebook, it was shared 7,384 times. It was liked 18,000 times. And most importantly, it had a reach of 2,899,540 people. Let me repeat that. On Facebook, the post reached 2.8 million people.

Then Acuff made these two observations:

  1. If you’re an entrepreneur, ignore Facebook at your peril.
  2. Facebook might not be the coolest platform, but it is the most effective

You can see the entire article on Jon Acuff’s website.  If you are one who uses social media to engage others, this is pretty interesting information to think about.

Instagram Continues to Grow

instagramI saw a link on Facebook that pointed to the Instagram blog where it was shared that the social media utility has grown to 300 million users. 300 Million! That makes my follower count seem even smaller.

Instagram passed Twitter in number of users a several months ago. I checked today and the number of Twitter users is 288 million with 500 million tweets sent each day. That’s not too shabby.

Pretty remarkable is the fact that Facebook is still quite popular. In December, 2014, the number of daily active users was 890 million.

Those numbers make it pretty clear that people are engaging in a number of different ways through social media.  Some folks were saying that Facebook was dying, but it seems they are still going strong.  While different age groups might be using different outlets (SnapChat, Instagram, etc), social media is a powerful tool to connect people.  It will be interesting to see how it continues to grow and what new trends develop in the future.

Enamored By Numbers

internet-statisticsI think for most (if not all) people involved in ministry, it is easy to get caught up in numbers. If one has a program or event and attendance is good, it leaves the planners with a sense of satisfaction. The opposite can be true if numbers are low – leaders can walk away deflated. We can become enamored by the numbers.

I remember something I read years ago (in the book Purpose Driven Youth Ministry I think): It’s easy to compare what you don’t know about someone else with what you do know about yourself. If I see what I consider success in another program and compare it to mine, it could leave me feeling unsuccessful.

I’m not sure how to get away from the numbers game. It is A way to determine success and fruit, but not THE way to determine it. There definitely is value in tracking the number of people involved in programs, groups, events, etc. I guess the challenge for the leader is not to live and die by the numbers.

I’m not the first to discuss the tension that exists and I really don’t have great, clear-cut advice for people in leadership positions. There are people smarter and more experienced than me that could speak to it. Just in the past few weeks I’ve been caught up in that tension and kind of chuckle at myself when I get either too high or too low based on the turnout for a particular program or event. I’m still working through it and manage it better some days versus others. Guess we are a work in progress.

Blog Stats

internet-statistics I consider myself an “occassional blogger.” I know there are some people out there who post something everyday and actually support themselves through blogging. Not sure I would be up for that, but more power to those who can do that.

I’ve been blogging on WordPress for a few years now. My first post occurred on September 15, 2009. Since that time I’ve had a total of 423 posts (this one actually makes 424). I have picked up a few followers along the way, which I think is kind of cool. I’ve had 24,717 views of my blog and the highest was over 220 hits in one day just last month.

While I didn’t go back and look through all my posts, I know the majority of them have to do with books I have read, reposts from our blogs (especially other student ministers), stuff about my kids and family and then other random stuff.

I like how WordPress provides information on number of visits, comments made and different parts of the globe where people have visited. I’ve had visits from the UK, Canada, India, the Philippines and other countries. My guess is they run across the blog and then clicked off to somewhere else.

It’s been fun putting stuff up here and getting a few bits of feedback. It’s a good place just to voice something new, brag on my family or echo a great thought from someone else. So, if you are a follower or occasional visitor, thanks for swinging by!