To say that the media has had a mass shift in recent times is an understatement. The television empire is slowly falling , caused by the monumental rise of streaming services, most prominently Netflix, alongside our generational obsession with social media and YouTube. This is “New Media”, the overbearing super power that is overtaking the traditional media within marketing, viewing figures and changing the way that millennials are thinking about jobs.
According to a survey conducted by the Sun (dubious, I know, but still reputable enough), 75% of Gen Z kids list “YouTuber” or “Vlogger” as their most desired career. To many of the baby boomer generation, this seems ridiculous. How can you make money doing that? “Impossible,” they say, “get a real job.” It’s a common thought of the older generation. What many of them fail to understand is that our new media is a fountain of wealth just waiting to be tapped, and I’m going to tell you why.
YouTube plays into the hands of our capitalist society beautifully. The ability to put hours of advertising in front of people of all ages brings about a new way of marketing. The growth of many social media marketing firms proves how vital this is in modern business. This means there is now millions of pounds being thrown towards YouTube, and consequently, YouTubers. That’s the first source of money to be tapped. Big YouTubers who bring in the most views get the most money, obviously. This trickles down to smaller channels, with shares of money being given out based on channel viewing figures. Straightforward, right?
The thing you might forget, however, is that this is not just a source of income for individuals. This is a business tool that cannot be ignored. Both a source of income and untold marketing potential for your business, what’s not to like? You don’t get that same exposure with TV, and you definitely don’t get the customisation of both your adverts and content with traditional media. It’s something you truly can’t ignore. Regardless of whether you watch YouTube or not, realising it is more than just an entertainment platform is the first step to reaping the benefits from it.
Now, the same applies to social media in general. Social media advertising is the one way to tailor your business exposure directly to your target audience. Everyone is on either Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, or a combination of the three. That means you have three platforms to exploit, and the benefits are huge.
Having a big social following can open a huge number of doors, from sponsorships (think Love Island stars Instagram pages) to general fame and fortune. Just think how often we hear the word “influencer” nowadays, and realise that despite the lack of faith that often comes from the boomers, this is now a real job, and a worthwhile skill. The fact that people still don’t make an effort with social media within business is farcical, and those companies will be the first to die if no change is made.
Finally, I want to talk about Netflix. This is less money related, but it’s interesting nonetheless. 140 million hours of Netflix are watched, on average, everyday. This platform has taken over the world’s screens, and changed our viewing trends. The binge watcher was born with Netflix, and everyone has the potential to binge watch from time to time. Funding shifted from TV to Netflix, famous faces like David Attenborough and Ricky Gervais are moving as well.
We all love Netflix, it’s a great innovation, and if anything shows the revolution of “New Media” then it’s this. I think it’s fantastic. It puts media into the hands of the people and pushes the idea of freedom of expression. New Media has taken over, and you better get on board, otherwise you’ll be left behind.