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Making Sense of Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tik Tok

Why Should Only the Young Have All the Fun

Do you know what the core aspect of aging well is, according to experts? It is the maintenance of social relationships. With a significant number of older adults living on their own, especially now because of COVID-19, social media offers the opportunity to stay connected through online discussion forums and joining social networks.

In the past few decades, social media has taken the world by storm, with users increasing at a dramatic rate. Over the last couple of years, many more older users have become open to

embrace the latest social networking tools, which were previously used predominantly by

youngsters. Social media gets a bad wrap but if used properly, it could have a positive impact on older women.

Almost everybody has a smartphone these days and has easy access to social media

platforms. However, some 50+ individuals may find some aspects of social media confusing,

challenging, or overwhelming. You may want to use it to connect to family or friends, but maybe worried about scaring your grandchildren away…not to worry, however! Let's tale a ;ppl behind the curtain and makes sense of the different platforms:


With more than 2 billion users all around the world, Facebook is one of the most popular social media platforms. It is a great way to keep in touch with your friends and family online because of the easy options for connecting and sharing. Interestingly, the largest group of people who engage with Facebook belong to the 55+ demographic, so you are likely to find many people you know.

We all know you can set up your account starting with the Facebook website or you can download the app then start sharing photos and messaging your family and friends. It is also a great way to reach out your to your market if you have a Facebook business account.

Once you launch your Facebook business account, with minimal effort and investment, you can market to your target audience. You will be prompted to filter to focus on your marker, market, select "boost" and your content will post in your market.

Here are some Facebook terms you can familiarize yourself with:

  • Timeline: This is your personal page, which includes all your information, including status updates, photos, friend list, interests and activities, and other information that you want to share. It is also the place where your friends can post information for you.

  • News Feed: This is a stream of photos and updates that are posted by your friends. It appears on your Home page.

  • Friend: A Friend on Facebook is a person whom you are connected with, which happens after one person sends a request, and the other accepts it. It is not important to accept a friend request from a stranger.

  • Status Update: This refers to any update posted on Facebook. People post updates having messages or photos which can be on a wide range of topics ranging from a meal they are having to the support they need for a social cause.

  • Page: These can be considered as a public profile or page of a business or personality. Businesses use them to have an online presence and connect with customers, while personalities like celebrities use them to connect with fans, and so on.

  • Facebook Live: Broadcast in real time an event, speech or even a rant. Your Facebook friends can see in real time what you are up to.

  • Group: A group is a place where people with similar interests can come together and interact with each other. Groups serve various functions, including being alumni groups, community groups, business groups, and area of interest groups. There is a group for just about everyhing - bird watching, creative writing, women over 50, Keto diet planning and health and well being! You name it, and there is a group. Can't find your area of interest? Start your Owen group.


Twitter is a social networking and news website where you can communicate via short

messages known as “tweets.” A tweet may have text, photos, and videos. You can share your

tweets with the people who follow you or even the general public. Twitter is another hugely

popular platform, with more than 336 million active users. In recent years, Twitter has become more popular due to celebrities and politicians who are using it to connect with their followers and fans. People in their 50's use Twitter to see what people of their interest are sharing. You can also use it to follow the news and share their opinions on their personal newsfeed. Also, use hashtags to track trends, subjects, hobbies, or influential people.


Instagram is an excellent platform mainly for sharing pictures. With 356 million followers, this is another popular platform. You can use it to share interesting photos and can follow influential personalities and brands. The format of the platform is simple, with only space for pictures and captions. You can also connect with others during direct messages. Through the Story feature, you can share highlights of your day.


This platform has been around for only a few years but has gained rapid popularity because of the entertainment value it offers. While it mainly targets young adults, older adults can also use it to post short content to share it with family and friends, or the general public. On TikTok, you

can make short videos having lip-syncing, dancing, pranks, and jokes. You can also follow those you like and enjoy their content. In short, TikTok has been rightly called “the karaoke of the digital age.” It has features that are similar to Instagram and can be a great source of fun as you create funny little videos and send them to your kids and grandkids. Also, it is a place where kids get to make fun of adults and vice versa. So, if you are looking for some good fun, hop onto TikTok and enjoy yourself!

Being 50+ doesn’t mean that social media platforms are off-the-table for you. Explore different platforms, learn how to use them, and have a good time while doing so.

Which social media platform do you use or want to use?

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