Family-generated Content: 7 Most Popular Social Media Family Trends
This past year has been a trying one. As the world was secluded to their homes, fighting off onset boredom became a priority for many families.
With that notion, many turned to content consumption, and the importance of the media became vastly more prevalent. However, people didn’t just tune in to more consumable content viewing, they also started to generate it.
New Family Activity
Generation Z and Alpha Gens are far more tech-savvy than any generation that has come before. These days, they have, with the company of willing parents, have taken a firm foothold in the digital landscape by uploading tons of content for others to consume. This content’s range broadly varies from informative and pragmatic videos to fun and heartfelt pieces. More than anything, they aim to share their content with everyone else, and there are plenty of willing consumers of this content who are ready to take it in.
The creation of fun, bite-sized video clips have become a family activity, as has the desire to consume this content. In surveys, 44% of children expressed that their favorite part of being at home more was that they got to see and spend time with their families. Creation and consumption of content is something that families could now do together. That is not to say, of course, that family content is anything Earth-shattering and new. It is just that now it feels like something that fulfills some fundamental pandemic-driven needs.
With the pandemic ravaging the world, most people have craved some degree of escapism. That is hard to achieve by getting lost in the perpetual news cycle, one of the primary forms of additional stress. Beyond that, much of the media content offered has a level of studio-produced predictability.
Even more to the point, family-generated content is typically more geared towards the children or the parents, never really both. Perhaps most importantly, creating content together as a family for other families to consume communicates a sense of normalization. In other words, the families producing content are in the same pandemic-secluded position as everyone else.
It’s easy to feel secluded and alone in these trying times, but for families watching other families doing things together serves as a much-needed reminder that everyone is in the same boat, and that doesn’t need to stop us from living life and enjoying the company of our families.
Much credit must be attributed to family-centric content creators, those who have made the creation of such content, their full-time profession. This includes the Holdernesses, the Atwoods, and the ACEs, along with many others who have laid the groundwork for many other families to have since joined the showcasing of everything from challenges to prank pulling, and even the simple, not-overly exciting explainer content.
Of course, to get the content out in this form, a family requires a platform to do it on, and none has been more influential in this regard than TikTok. What started out as a place for trendsetting millennials and Gen Zs, has experienced a dramatic shift in users, including older individuals (30+) who have joined the rapidly growing platform. Seeing families join in on the fun, getting creative on the platform, has given others a sneak peek into how others are living in the pandemic containment bubble.
7 Popular Social Media Content Trends
So what are the most impactful content trends currently populating social media? Let’s run through a few.
Something About Me…
Backed by the irresistible punchiness of Run DMC’s “It’s Tricky”, the “This or That Challenge” has been a recent social media sensation. The bite-sized videos displaying two different options via text bubbles give two choices for the activity being chosen, as the video participant dances forward to reveal their preferred choice. In one particularly notable example of a ‘this’ versus ‘that’ selection, Gordon Ramsey’s daughter chose the cooking of her mother over that of her celebrity father.
Family Game Night
Video sharing platforms have allowed families to transform their traditional game night acts into a more challenge-based set of activities like the ‘flour challenge’ and the ‘ping pong challenge.’ These contests have allowed for a new creative type of at-home gameplay, sometimes even bringing in pets into the action, such as was the case with the paper wall scaling mastery of the ‘level up challenge.’
Celebration of Family
Family game night would be lacking an element after all if it was not for exploring all of the family dynamics. The creative videos range from a nostalgic retrospective of family members growing up as part of the “I’m Just A Kid” trend to the “Hi Mom/Dad” challenge where each family member invites their mother or father into the shot, going back as far as 4 generations back. And of course, the ‘Sibling Challenge’ has trended as a highly popular contest where a parent has to associate a particular attribute to one of their children.
Moving and Grooving
Hardly anything has been known to connect generations more than the arts of dance and music, a fact that video platforms (especially Tik Tok and Instagram) have helped put to excellent use of popular classic or contemporary hits prompting families to try out their best dance moves to the tunes. However, the family musical activities were not simply limited to that. The ‘Bop It! Challenge’ had parents using their children as props in place of the interactive toy from the 90s, while other families competed in challenging themselves and their family members to figure out if they were familiar with a particular tune in a musical guessing challenge.
Going out While Staying in
In the early stages of the pandemic, when the world’s lockdown was a bit more universal, in order to escape the reality of being constantly at home, families began mimicking their normal life behaviors in the outside world while being indoors in video. These videos included everything from a setup of the family’s favorite dining establishments to a 21st birthday party-induced establishment of ‘Club Quarantine.’ Some even simulated hotel stays while remaining at home.
Family Meal Prep
Families cooking together has been an age-old tradition, but with video streaming during the lockdown, it has been taken to a new level. From ‘how to’ videos to meal preps set to music, families often mealtime prep by singing and dancing through the cooking process. To escape the monotony of everyday dinners, families have begun to entertain themselves with themed movies or setting nights. In some cases, family members found hilarious ways to dress like other family members, while some set up dinners that resemble them being from different decades.
Families often interact by taking mocking jabs at one another in the spirit of fun. The social media platforms expanded on this dynamic by making videos of parents posting videos jokingly playing up the mayhem caused by their kids being at home. Parents of younger kids sometimes even post videos expressing friendly fun at how their kids are trying to pronounce certain words.
So is this trend, spurred by a lot of extra family time together going to taper off as the pandemic eases its grip? Signs point to that being unlikely. If anything, this trending content is only going to be more creative and expand. A big part of this is the adoption of acceptance and exploration of technology which many have not attempted before when technology became a means of communication and learning.
Technology has been our window to the rest of the world when we could not be there ourselves. For that reason, many parents and older users have begun to understand the true benefits and power of technology in bringing people together.
Of course, the youth is helping to lead the charge by showing their parents that technology is not to be feared but harnessed. As parents watch their children grow as influential social media voices, they ease with their own usage of technology. Plus, anyone can break out into internet superstardom at any time.
Regardless of influence, as people’s families give others a glimpse into their homes and lives, others will happily tune in and be inspired to share their lives too, bringing us all a little closer together.