Like, love, haha, wow, sad and angry.
They’re the Facebook reactions we’ve all become familiar with. But how about we add two more to the list? Let’s call them ‘poor’ and ‘insecure.’
Those are the outcomes some Facebook users can expect, according to a new study, thanks to a pervasive ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ mentality on social media that drains people’s wallets!
How often Facebook and other social media impact your bottom line
The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants released a new study with some startling findings:
- 39% of adults with a social media account say they start researching vacations and purchases when they see their friends in distant locales or showing off flashy stuff online.
- 11% say they’ve actually taken that vacation or made that purchase after doing research in an effort to one-up their friends.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, according to a New York Post report.
Back in 2014, a Gallup poll found that 30% of us feel that social media can sway our purchases and 5% of us say that it actually does have a significant impact.
That number goes up the younger you are. Nearly half of millennials report that social media does impact their purchasing decisions.
Other ways Facebook may hurt your finances
If you manage to avoid other people’s purchases dictating yours, you’re still not immune from the many scammers that infest Facebook and try to get into your wallet.
Some of those scammers will masquerade as famous celebrities, pop culture figures or social media darlings in an effort to get money out of you.
One of Clark’s fans wrote in on Facebook to detail her brush with the crooks.
‘I have had several Facebook friend requests from ‘country music stars’ [saying] that I had liked their FB page. One was supposedly Tim McGraw and the other was supposedly Trace Adkins. They thank me for being a fan, develop a little conversation, then tell me the security company they have been using is closing and they need a dependable person to receive and hold their briefcase.’
‘Said briefcase allegedly contains a HUGE sum of money, concert tickets, etc… The briefcase will be delivered to me via a courier service and I must pay the fee to get the briefcase, which will be returned to me tenfold. The fee? $800 + !!!!!!! Please let people know. I notified local law enforcement who didn’t care. The [scammers] actually got very ugly when I refused.’
What you can do to stay safe
The threat of running into a bogus celebrity Facebook profile is definitely out there. So here are some tips to keep you on the straight and narrow:
- When connecting with celebrities, use their official verified social media account. Look for the little blue checkmark — called a verified badge — to know who you’re dealing with.
- Report any scams to Facebook.
- Block any user accounts from which a scam is coming.
- Know that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is!