Social Media In Pakistan
Social media has grown like a fire in the past few years. In Pakistan it has become a necessity of youth and as far as the corporate world is concerned it is an effective medium of marketing for them now. Social media is widely popular in Pakistan; social sites such as Twitter and Facebook have become quite common in use especially by the youth here.
The emergence of social media in the world has a great impact on the lifestyle of Pakistanis. Social sites have made it easy to interact and contact with those who were once out of reach or it was difficult or expensive to stay in touch with them. But this is just only a primary feature of these social sites. Now social media is just used as a marketing platform in Pakistan but it has been used politically and for media and arts as well. Despite high illiteracy rate and the fact that majority of Pakistanis belonging to the rural areas, interest of Pakistanis towards these social sites and growing number of users is astonishing. According to a recent survey there are more than 9 million Pakistani users on Facebook.
Freedom of expression has always been an issue in Pakistan. Media has been struggling for its freedom of speech for decades in this country. The emergence of social media has given this power to every individual in our society now.
So how these social sites are being used in our country?
Let’s have a quick view of how they are being used and how we can make the most out of it.
Although in Pakistan it all started from “ORKUT” but the introduction of Facebook revolutionized the attention of internet users in Pakistan. These days almost everyone is found on Facebook in Pakistan having a Facebook account is not just a trend but it’s a social norm more of a necessity these days. Due to the increasing number of Facebook users in Pakistan and their active participation on this network has lead many corporate firms to change their market tactics and platforms via electronic and print media to social media as well. Many corporate firms, brands, restaurants and even educational institutes made their FAN PAGES and GROUPS on Facebook. The active and direct response of users and fans lead these organizations to initiate this step. Companies now announce their brand launch via this platform; this medium has become a source of interaction between the client and customer in the corporate world from where they get direct feedback on their products. Restaurants have now launched online delivery service for its users with online interactive menus on Facebook. Facebook has not just been used by the corporate world but many artists and political figure also used this social site to interact with their followers and share their personal views and lifestyle with those who wanted to know. Politically Pervez Musharraf was the first political leader who had more than 4 lakh fans in the very beginning of this trend. Following this many other political figures also joined Facebook which was a quite effective step for the first time by these leaders to interact with their followers. The most major and developing trend on Facebook was the fan pages made by the celebrities for their fans. Speaking of celebrities example of AATIF ASLAM’s fan page can be given here as the Pakistani celebrity with highest likes on his fan page which is more than 6.4 million. Similarly many other celebrities can be found on Facebook sharing their lifestyle and messages with their fan which has changed the trend of fan following from searching for their stars everywhere in the markets and various places to follow them on Facebook. Another feature of this site is the EVENT page many event managers, protestors and companies use this page to promote their event and to announce any public gathering. Just write down your event details, make it public, invite friends and share it with others the easiest way to grab the attention of public. These event pages are used for concert invitations, NGO events, and Political protest and for many other occasional events. Hence the introduction of Facebook has changed the social lifestyle of an individual Pakistani.
Another social media platform not as much common in use as much Facebook is but it has its own value. Twitter is known to be used by a certain class specially. You can say Facebook is a common man and twitter is for a bit classy people here in Pakistan. May be because of its not so common features and different style of social interaction. Tweets and trends is what twitter is known for. It is mostly used by well-known public figures here in Pakistan to whom its followers can publicly follow on twitter.
LinkedIn is the professional social site. It is used for job searching and for corporate or professional networking everywhere. In Pakistan the majority of social media users are the youth and they are usually found on Facebook and twitter whereas linked is used by the mature professionals. Such as LinkedIn there are many other Pakistani sites as well for job searching which has made job searching quite easy.
Although it is not like other typical social sites but it is a huge hit not just in Pakistan but all around the world. Videos by individual can be uploaded and shared publicly via this platform. In Pakistan Musicians have used this platform to share their art with the world as in Pakistan the media and art industry is not that huge as it is in rest of the world so for better exposure of their talent artists use this platform to share their work. Apart from the artists it is used by the professionals from every walk of life.
Apart from the above mentioned social sites and platforms there are numerous other sites which are being used here in Pakistan and have also changed social lifestyle of individuals.
Pakistan a third world country also a victim of terrorism has unfortunately a very negative image in the world. Appropriate use of these sites by its users can give a positive and real image of Pakistan globally. Social media is being used on a massive level in rest of the world which has just started in Pakistan. Future of the corporate world and existence of majority of businesses lies on social media. The corporate world and other institutions are going to fight for their first page ranking on Google in the near future. As people don’t have much time to physically go and search for their required essentials. The internet has made shopping, studies and social interaction just one click away.
Now social media is a huge emerging power appropriate use of this platform with proper social media ethics is not just essential but a necessity in the coming future which lies on this platform. The future of the corporate and social world indeed lies on these social media mediums.