Facebook for Seniors
Our Top Three Tips
If you’re a senior who has a Facebook account, you’ll be happy to know that you’re part of the fastest-growing demographic joining the social network’s membership ranks.
According to the Pew Research Center, seniors are the fastest growing social media segment and almost 49% of seniors are now on social media:
In fact, Facebook is just about the easiest way to connect with your family members and hear about everything that is going on in their lives. Young people today rarely pick up the phone to give their grandparents a call, but they are experts in texting and loading images up online as well as videos.
My three-year old son in Texas is able to have a great relationship with his grandparents in India as well as my parents in California because of Facebook’s excellent messaging features and accessibility.
Once you’ve signed up for an account with your email address and have added your contacts, use these top three Facebook hacks:
1. Tag family members in your status update.
If you want to know how your granddaughter Lily in Arkansas is doing, forget using the private message box. Teens aren’t particularly nervous about their privacy and some rarely check their Facebook messages. Simply click on the status update icon, write your message and start typing in their name. Facebook will automatically suggest their name from your list of contacts and the name will show up as blue text.
You’ll get bonus points for adding in a hashtag with no spaces on your update (like #loveyoutothemoonandback). And extra brownie points for adding in an emoticon. 🙂
The additional benefit of adding in your granddaughter’s name is that your status update will be displayed on their wall so even if they aren’t checking up on your wall to see if you’ve posted anything, they’ll see that you are thinking about them because the post will appear on their wall when they are tagged! Plus, their friends will see what a tech savvy genius you are with those hashtags!
Here’s a sample screen shot from the Facebook home screen on a desktop computer:
2. Set up your Facebook account to send messages to your email account.
Unless you are a Facebook fanatic, email is a great way to see recent (and older) updates without actually having to log in to Facebook to see what is going on and you are also able to reply without having to click into Facebook.
To set this up simply go to your account settings icon on the top right hand corner and click. Next, scroll over to the Notifications section on the left hand side of the screen. Once you click on Notifications, the Notification Settings options will appear. The below highlighted items on the screen shot are my personal favorites for maximizing the email features without feeling overwhelmed by it all:
3. Update your privacy settings every month.
Social media privacy settings seem to change on a constant basis and updates to sites continue to confuse general audiences on what information is collected and how it is used.
A senior pro tip is to set a recurring monthly reminder on your desktop or email calendar to remind you to check your privacy settings.
Facebook recently made it easier for users to understand the privacy settings and how to adjust them. Once you are logged into your account on Facebook, go to the homepage and select the privacy icon. Immediately a Privacy Checkup drop down option will appear directly below the icon. Click on this option and it will guide you through your current privacy settings and allow you to update your choices. Each section also links to the Facebook help page.
Here is a screenshot of what the Privacy Checkup drop down box looks like:
What are your experiences and pro tips on using Facebook? Comment below!
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