I am a regular subscriber to the Iconoculture newsletter, a weekly missive that charts trends based on both statistics and observations. They usually have some interesting factoids. Most are useless in my daily life but they're still fun to read.
This week, though, they had an interesting article about Millennials -- those born in the '80s and later -- starting to ditch social media altogether and go back to face-to-face interactions. According to the article, the reason is they feel those social sites (such as Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter) are ruining their social interactions with real people. Some are even going to the point of using an online service to completely obliterate their social network presence, which doesn't make the owners of those sites too happy.
It will be interesting to see how all this plays out. On the one hand, this could just be a blip -- the typical backlash you get from a small group of people anytime a trend takes off. On the other hand...
Marketers are continually being told they have to get onto/into/around social media if they want to reach the highly-prized Millennial audience. If this turns out to be a growing trend, it could have a huge impact on how marketing dollars are spent within the next few years. Who knows? Maybe print media or network TV will make a comeback.
It's definitely worth thinking about, though. If Millennials abandon social media in favor of face-to-face contact, how will you reach them? Maybe digital signage at bars, restaurants and other gathering places is the answer. Stay tuned.