When we think of the internet, or the world wide web, we think of it as exactly that, “worldwide.” We simply never take the time to take into account accessibility, censorship and popularity amongst certain regions preferred social media platforms. Limiting the way, we perceive worldwide to have a more tailored following. More simply put, the social media giants such as Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram don’t always share the same extensive use that they do in the United States in Eastern and Central European countries.
Take Facebook for example, the world’s largest social media platform, in the United States it holds a monopolist power serving as the single most popular site for communication, photo sharing and a community social media platform. This idea of a Facebook monopoly doesn’t entirely exist in the same sense for many Eastern European countries, specifically in Russia. Russia has a very popular website called VK.com which provides a tailored, fast speed, user friendly look alike to Facebook. Primarily used by over 90 million monthly active users.
Image courtesy of REUTERS/Dado Ruvic
Although not even amongst the top 10 websites in Eastern Europe, Twitter has been showing a growth amongst people in Central and Eastern Europe due to the widespread use of smartphones in this region. In the Czech Republic, and many alike countries, Twitter is considered more of an elitist platform, being used by mainly politicians, celebrities or those of a higher social presence or fame.
Companies tend to be a major consumer of Twitter, using it as a marketing, public relation and promotional platform.
As for Snapchat it is virtually invisible in the Central and Eastern European countries. With only 1/5 of European people using Snapchat compared to those in the United States, Instagram is hands down the more favorable social media platform.
With smartphones continuously growing in popularity in Central and Eastern European countries it will be interesting if we see a change in the usage of certain social media platforms. If we will become more homogeneous with our social media use, or if we will divide and have region specific platforms.
Image courtesy of Flickr user mkhmarketing