Everyone is on social media today. This great new online world is not bound by age now. Older people are now using social media to connect, communicate and interact with others. So, social media for seniors has become an essential part of their lives.
But many seniors still don’t know the uses of social media. It is slightly different from how young adults may use it. Also, there are many social media impacts for seniors. Are they all positive? And what are the social media benefits for seniors?
Let’s find out the answers to the questions.
What Is Social Media?
So, our discussion begins with understanding the basics of social media. Social media is platform for websites to connect with people from all over the world. You can connect with organizations, communities, and businesses too on social media.
Social media are computer-mediated interactive tools that allow people to create and share information, career interests, trendy ideas and other kinds of expression through virtual networks and communities.
According to Wikipedia:
Everyone needs access to the internet to use social media. They need to create their private account with their personal information on the platforms. And thus, seniors can start using social media platforms.
6 of the Best Social Media Platforms for Seniors
So, the big question is which social media is best for seniors? There are quite a few sites seniors can use. Here is a list of the 5 most common ones.
We’re sure you already know about Facebook. It is the most famous social media platform in the world. Everyone is now on Facebook. All you have to do is open an account and start using the platform. Yes, it’s that easy! And we’re also confident that you’ll find all your family and friends there.
Another very popular social media platform is Twitter. You can post, share and comment on anything in the world. You will find more popular celebrities on Twitter. Here’s how you can easily open a Twitter account.
Instagram has become quite famous among young adults these days. But it is also a great platform to share and see pictures. This may not be the best social media for old folks. But seniors are getting accustomed to this lately.
LinkedIn is a platform for job seekers and experienced retirement seniors. It may not be the first choice for any older people. But you can open an account and spread your professional knowledge through LinkedIn.
Baby boomer women are using the ThirdAGE platform these days. The platform shares self-care, wellness and health-related information. You can publish your own content there as well.
6. The dating apps
It’s never late to get back into the game. As seniors, you can get into the dating apps designed for you. Some of the famous platforms are:
Social Media Uses for Seniors
Social media is extraordinarily impactful and beneficial for seniors. But before that, we need to understand how seniors can make use of it. The best way to find this out is by checking the characteristics of the platforms.
Social media allows seniors the option to participate, make contributions and give feedback. They can do all these with a wide range of people worldwide. Also, social media makes communication faster and easier. And finally, there is an ample number of resources available on senior care and senior living.
For a long-time, people have assumed that social media is suitable for young people only. But that is so not true in today’s era at all! Seniors using social media have become a common sight. And thus, everyone needs to get into the habit.
And finally, social media has brought the world closer to seniors. Even at such old ages, they can rely on themselves to find the information online. Thus, social networking has become a thing for seniors too. And many brands and companies are taking advantage to target seniors on social media too.
Social Media for Seniors: 5 Positive Impacts
Social media positively impacts the lives of seniors. Here are 5 ways how social media plays a positive role:
1. Mental health improvement
Social media ensures that the mental health of the elderly is taken into consideration. Social engagement makes seniors mentally be in a good place. They can also stay updated with the latest trends and news. As a result, they are away from bad habits like smoking and drinking.
Thus, social media enables seniors to interact with online communities. As a result, they are away from depression, frustration and negative thoughts. Eventually, their mental health remains top-notch.
2. Easier online shopping
Every age group loves shopping. It’s fun and challenging at the same time. And seniors are no different. But when they can’t go out much, online shopping is the best option for them.
Social media platforms enable seniors to shop their favorite products while sitting at home. Everything is just a tap away for them. And many brands offer discounts for seniors too.
3. Interaction with family and friends
One of the main issues seniors face is being away from friends and family. Unfortunately, their mental health gets affected by this too. Social media can significantly help in this aspect.
Almost every age of people is in social media today. So seniors can get connected to their children, grandkids, and other friends and their families. They can stay in touch with all these people. And they can know who’s doing what.
4. Be a part of online communities
Seniors can find many online communities suitable for them on social media. So they can be a part of the communities. And this can give them a sense of belonging.
Social media for older people is a great option to chat, make calls and share experiences. They can find like-minded people there too. As a result, seniors can become a part of the whole world even at old ages.
5. Reduction of senior isolation
Seniors living in senior care facilities can feel isolated. It is something that can also create mental health issues. They need social interaction to get out of such feelings.
Social media can help in this as well. It is a great option to connect with people of the society and interact. But they must make sure that it is not a replacement for in-personal communications.
Social Media for Seniors: 6 Key Benefits
Now we know how the virtual world can impact the lives of seniors. And these are positive impacts. So, there will be many benefits too. Here is a total of 6 benefits of social media for seniors.
1. Connect with long-distance relatives
When seniors are living in senior care facilities, their relatives may be living far. The best way to stay connected with them is through social media. You can use social media to know about their everyday lives and even talk to them.
2. Make new friends and reconnect with old ones
Facebook is an excellent platform for connecting with friends. You can find your long-lost friend on Facebook. And you can also make new friends on social media platforms.
3. Be a part of civic digital movements
Social media doesn’t only enable social interaction. Many recent and concerning civil issues have begun from social media platforms. This gives seniors an opportunity to get involved in those movements and raise their voices.
4. The educational aspects
Social media platforms can be educational too. There are many groups that share educational posts. You will also find learning videos and content on social media.
5. Starting online businesses
Online businesses have become super easy these days. You can stay home and earn money. And age is not a factor here at all. Seniors can get connected with interesting and active people and start new business ventures.
6. Unlimited entertainment
The core concept of social media is connection and entertainment. Seniors can get unlimited entertainment from social media. There are many funny contents on the platforms. You can watch and laugh for free.
5 Key Challenges of Social Media for Seniors
While social media can be a great way to stay connected with friends and family, there are also some challenges that seniors face when using these platforms. Below, we’ll take a look at five of the key challenges of social media for seniors.
1. Difficulty Navigating Social Media Platforms
One of the biggest challenges that seniors face when using social media is simply navigating the various platforms. With so many different options available, it can be tough to know where to start. Additionally, each platform has its own set of features and functions that can be confusing to understand. Besides, for seniors who are not familiar with computers or the internet, learning how to use social media sites can be daunting. If you’re a senior who is looking to get started on social media, our best advice is to start with one platform and master it before moving on to others.
2. Social media can be time-consuming
Another challenge of social media for seniors is that it can take up a lot of time. For many seniors, social media is a way to stay connected with family and friends who live far away. However, spending too much time on social media can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. It’s important to find a balance between staying connected online and enjoying offline activities.
3. Social media can be addicting
For some people, social media can be addicting. If you find yourself spending more time than you’d like on social media sites, it might be helpful to set limits on how much time you allow yourself to spend on these platforms each day. There are also a number of apps and software programs that can help you limit your screen time.
4. Social media can be a breeding ground for cyberbullying and scams
Unfortunately, social media platforms can also be a breeding ground for cyberbullying and different online scams. If you find yourself the victim of cyberbullying or witness someone else being bullied online, it’s important to report this behavior to the site administrators or block the person or group responsible for the bullying.
5. Social media can be a source of fake news and misinformation
Another key challenge of social media is that it can be a source of fake news and misinformation. With so much false information circulating ing online, it’s important to be critical of the sources you’re getting your information from. If you’re unsure about the accuracy of something you see on social media, check out other news sources or fact-checking websites before sharing it with others.
It’s no secret that social media has taken the world by storm. In recent years, social media usage has exploded, with seniors being one of the fastest-growing groups of users. It can bring them a lot of enjoyment and mental satisfaction, plus they can connect with people worldwide.
Though there are also a number of challenges that come with using these platforms, with some rules and safety measures, seniors can make the most out of their social media experience.
Does a social media manager work with senior staff?
Yes, a social media manager may work with senior staff to develop marketing and communication plans that include social media.
How can a senior citizen make money with social media?
There are a few ways that seniors can make money with social media. One way is to create a blog or YouTube channel and sell advertising space. Another way is to use social media to promote products or services that they offer. For example, a senior citizen could use Facebook to run a special promotion for their home-based bakery business. Seniors can also use social media to find work-from-home opportunities.
How can senior living stand out on social media?
- One way that senior living can stand out on social media is by creating unique, engaging content that speaks to their target audience. This could include posts about the benefits of living in a seniors’ community, funny stories or anecdotes from residents, or tips for staying healthy and active.
- Another way to stand out on social media is by using creative visuals. This could include eye-catching graphics, videos of residents doing activities, or photos of the community itself.
- Finally, it’s important to be active on social media and respond to comments and questions from followers. This not only helps to build relationships with potential residents, but also shows that you’re engaged with your audience and care about their feedback.
How to teach social media to seniors?
There are a few different ways to teach social media to seniors:
- Start with the basics and explain how it works
- Explain the benefits of using social media
- Show them how to use different platforms
- Encourage them to ask questions
- Be patient
How senior citizens interact on social media?
Senior citizens have embraced social media in a big way. They use it to stay connected with friends and family, and to stay up-to-date on the latest news and events. Many seniors are active on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. They often post about their hobbies, travels, and favorite recipes. They also use social media to stay informed about healthcare issues and other important topics.