Seniors and Social Media
As a senior, how many times have you had to wait for a family member to mail you pictures or wanted to feel more connected to family and friends living far away? For many seniors, going online is a faster and more effective way to stay in touch. Social media allows users to go online to different websites, such as Facebook or Twitter, and share content with other users. Facebook is becoming more and more popular, and according to Pew Research Center, 46 percent of seniors now use social media. Facebook is a great social media platform to get started with if you’re interested in connecting with family and friends online; it allows users to share photos, videos, status updates and even messages.
If you haven’t already created a Facebook account, here are five reasons you might want to try it out.
1) Stay in touch with family and friends
Facebook makes it easy for users to send private messages to each other, share photos and update statuses to let their friends know what’s new in their lives. It’s definitely much more efficient than snail mail!
2) Reconnect with friends from the past
One of the most rewarding aspects of social media can be reconnecting with long last friends and relatives. On Facebook you can search people by name or email to easily re-connect. Facebook will also generate a list of people you may know based on a variety of factors such as your friends list, location and employment history.
3) Share updates
Your senior years can be an exciting time that friends and family would love to stay updated on. Mailing individual letters about your recent activities can become time consuming and inefficient. On the contrary, updating your status or uploading photos on Facebook is a quick and easy way to send out information to everyone on your friends list.
4) Learn new things
Social networking sites can provide a wealth of knowledge on a variety of topics. Your Facebook contacts can share articles, video clips and other materials that will keep you learning something new every day. You can also navigate social networking sites to have a question answered, or even better, pose a question on your Facebook page to be answered by friends on your contacts list.
Not only can your friends share informative materials on social networking sites, they will likely share entertaining things as well. Scrolling through Facebook can be a great way to find an interesting article or a funny photo; the possibilities for entertainment are truly endless.
According to a 2013 Fast Company Article, adults ages 45-54 are the fastest growing demographic signing on to social networks, such as Facebook and Google+. As more learn the value of social networks and how easy they are to log on and use, they will likely help families and friends stay even more connected.
To get started, head to Facebook and follow the prompts to create a new account. Before you get started, make sure you have a functioning email account and enough time to complete the process. Should you run into any problems, the Facebook help page is a great resource. For additional help navigating the world of social networking, try reading a book like Anna Sparrowhawk’s Social Networking for Seniors in Easy Steps.