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Why are So Many Seniors Joining the Social Media Party?

Posted by David Ghiorso, CPA, April 6, 2017

When someone mentions Facebook or other forms of social media, what is your immediate reaction? You might envision these forms of communication as being saturated by kids in their twenties, gossiping or sharing information about this weekend’s upcoming party.

In reality, that vision couldn’t be farther from the truth! Most people use to social media to share pictures of their families, discuss current events, and network within their local communities. Garage sale groups have even popped up left and right on Facebook, giving users the opportunity to make a little money or grab a great deal on things they need.

As for age, the average age of Facebook users is increasing. Study after study has shown a growing number of users over age 50, even over age 60 and beyond!

Why are so many retirees flocking to Facebook and other social media platforms?

It’s easy to stay in touch with family. Gone are the days when children and grandchildren lived within a few miles of you. Today’s families are spread all over the country, or even the world. Social media gives you the opportunity to stay in touch on a daily basis. You can share pictures, watch their videos, chat in real time, and even talk face-to-face through video chat.

Time zones and work schedules aren’t a problem, since anyone can log into social media at any time. It’s much better than a simple phone call! And when a grandchild posts pictures of their class trip to space camp, or a niece or nephew shares a live video from their Paris vacation, it’s so much better than hearing about it months later!

Stay in touch with your community. Most community organizers are using Facebook to announce upcoming events and organize group activities. You can find social clubs to join, and make new friends who live near you (and then meet up in person). As we mentioned before, many people are even using Facebook as a 24-7 online garage sale. Social media is a great way to find out about local health fairs or get the latest information on disease prevention or treatments. So it’s even good for your health!

Receive discounts from your favorite retailers. Many of your favorite companies will offer coupon codes and special discounts specifically to their social media fan base. But you won’t know about these deals if you aren’t online!

Peace of mind and a sense of “belonging”. Social media offers a mode of connection for those who live alone. It’s a way to stay connected to friends, stay up to date, and maintain interaction with others. This can aid in maintaining a positive attitude and outlook.

These are just some of the benefits retirees have discovered by joining social media. Setting up an account is easier than you think. You just need a valid email address, and you can begin setting up an online profile. But if you need help, don’t be afraid to ask a family member to guide you through the process. They will no doubt be thrilled that you are joining them online.

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