Every day over 1 million selfies are taken and more than 17 million selfies are uploaded and shared. But how can brands make the most of this selfie phenomenon and what does the future hold for selfies?
‘Selfie’, which was named word of the year in 2013, is described as ‘a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and shared via social media’. The explosion of the Internet and digital developments has made sharing ‘selfies’ even easier. Who remembers the famous celebrity selfie Ellen DeGeneres took at the Academy Awards in 2014? A simple group selfie turned out to be one of the biggest marketing stunts of that year and received an impressive 3 million re-tweets within two days.
But what does this tell us? Firstly, companies need to get up to speed on the #SelfieGame and understand exactly why and how selfies can impact their brand perception. The research paper "Brand selfies: consumer experiences and marketplace conversations", explores how brands should be using selfies and probes the question ‘ Have you Googled ‘your brand’ and ‘selfie’ yet? ’
Other than looking at how to use selfies it is important to understand why we take selfies and how social media has played a vital part in this. After all, why take the perfect selfie if you are not going to share it? ‘The selfie phenomenon: 3 reasons why people love to take selfies, a blog written by Emerald author Christine M. Kowalczyk, highlights how people find the need to manage impressions through selfies and look for instant gratification in the form of positive feedback, shares and likes, something which has only been made possible with the rise of social media.
So, it looks selfies are here to stay for now anyway. The selfie phenomenon has already gained the interest of scholars within various disciplines within social sciences and humanities and continues to be an area of interest. Watch this space!
To see the latest selfie research from the European Journal of Marketing click here. All research papers highlighted are free to read until the end of the year.
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