Social media has evolved significantly since its inception. While the promise of connection and democratization of information lured us in, it seems like something is missing. Could the solution be going back to our roots?

The Good Old Days

Remember those carefree MySpace bulletins? The unfiltered photo dumps of weekend adventures?  The virtual girlfriends from across the world? There was a genuineness and sense of community unlike the heavily curated feeds we see today. Social media was about sharing you with others.

The Shift

We've entered an era of overproduction and inauthenticity. Social media is saturated with "content," making it hard to stand out. Retention editing reigns supreme - frenetic cuts, zooms, graphics, and captions. The message? You must fight for attention because attention spans are dwindling. But is that true? People still binge-watch shows and movies.

The focus on virality often leads to content that, although visually striking, feels empty and insincere. We've developed a "bullshit radar." Authenticity is starting to win out.

AI is Further Complicating Things

The rise of AI image and video generation makes it even harder to discern truth from fiction. This erosion of trust will force us to rethink our social media experience.

What Does the Future Hold?

I believe we are entering Social Media 3.0, a return to the core values of online connection. Algorithms appear to be shifting away from prioritizing pure retention in favor of content that feels more genuine, even if it's less polished.

The data is clear: more raw and "real" videos are getting pushed out. People are responding to creators who feel relatable and approachable, as opposed to those who preach from an influencer pedestal.

The Creator Trap

It's tempting to follow what works to gain initial traction. But blindly copying trends will ultimately hurt you. When the algorithm shifts, your audience won't be tied to you as an individual.

How to Succeed as a Content Creator

  • Be Real: Let your personality and unique perspective shine. Dare to be different, even if it means going against the grain. Embrace your 'unfair advantage' and find creative ways to incorporate it into your content.
  • Know Your Stuff: If you educate through your content, be an expert or be honest about your learning journey. People gravitate to those they trust. This is particularly advantageous for smaller creators – your relatability builds loyalty.
  • Be Opinionated: It's okay to take a stand, even a controversial one. You won't be for everyone, and that's okay. People connect with those who aren't afraid to voice their beliefs.
  • Foster Community: Make your audience feel like they're on this journey with you. This means moving towards conversation and away from just pushing information out.

The future of social media lies in real, relatable creators who aren't afraid to express individuality. This authenticity builds trust and a loyal audience, essential to surviving whatever trends may come.