The vlogging duo Mambo 5 – or Olivia and Elizabeth to use their given names – have been documenting their lives as students at the University of Warwick for the past three years and they do a brilliant job. And, as the quality of their answers below shows, they’re not just good at making videos – settle in for a load of learning.
Which social networks did you use the most in 2017?
Olivia: Facebook is actually one of the only social media platforms that I have, so I use this daily. Not sure if you would count Youtube as a social media platform, but I use this a lot as well.
Elizabeth: Youtube for sure. I’m on it almost every day. I like to catch up on the videos in my subscription box over breakfast and while doing my makeup. Also definitely Facebook for me as well, although I mostly just use the messenger app rather than scrolling through the feed.
And which ones did you hardly use at all? Were there any networks you deleted from your phone in 2017?
O: I was conflicted between whether or not I liked Instagram, I went through a stage of having it and then deleting it and then re-downloading it again. I have purposively deleted my account now because I don’t feel the need to be looking at what people have for their dinner everyday! I also had Snapchat ever since my school years, but after being at university I was getting easily distracted so decided to de-activate my account for the greater good of my degree.
E: Snapchat. I think I actually deleted it at the end of 2016, but I haven’t looked back. I was never a very dedicated user. Once Instagram introduced the stories and messaging features, it didn’t make sense for me to have both apps.
If you were only allowed to use one social network in 2018, which would you choose and why?
O: It would be Facebook, I use this a lot to contact my family abroad so it is a handy way to stay connected. It also fills my time with entertaining videos and who doesn’t love a good meme?
E: I definitely agree with Olivia. Facebook is the easiest way for me to contact friends and family.
Pick one word to sum up your thoughts about the following social networks… (Olivia first, Elizabeth second)
Facebook – Inter-connected, instant
Twitter – Gossip, opinionated
Snapchat – Self-obsession, fleeting
Instagram – Show-off, curated
LinkedIn – Professional, informative
YouTube – Entertainment, gratifying
Who are your favourite celebrities or influencers to follow on social media?
O: As much as I tell people that I dislike the Kardashians, I follow all of them on Facebook. Their life just seems so interesting and the question of how they became famous is still unknown! Gives me some optimism just in case my degree goes down the pan haha. There are also a few YouTubers that I follow as I like their editing style and their video entertainment, so trying to learn a few hints and tips off of them.
E: I follow updates from celebrities and influencers on Youtube and Instagram for the most part. Estee Lalonde (Youtuber, author, podcast host) is one of my favourites. She posts content on fashion, beauty and travel. I especially like her content because I feel like she has a similar style to mine, and she also lives in London.
Do you follow your University’s official social media channels? If so, how do you think they do? If not, why not?
E: I follow Warwick’s Instagram, LinkedIn and Facebook pages. I do really like seeing pictures of campus and such, especially since starting my placement year. If I’m looking for informative content I’ll generally check LinkedIn or my email. I’m always happy to see content from the university as it is usually high resolution images and video and well thought through content. Also, I “like” posts featuring Warwick students, staff or alumni are mentioned in news articles posted on Facebook or LinkedIn so people in my network can see them too.
If you contacted your University on social media, how quickly would you expect to receive a response?
O: Wouldn’t know – sorry!
E: I also have never tried myself!
What sort of effect does it have on you when brands work with influencers on their social media channels? Do you pay more attention or does it not make much difference?
O: It depends on the brand and the theme of the social media channel – if the brand is going to benefit the viewers, and is sold to the audience in an interesting way that makes me want to watch, then by all means! But when you start having social media channels trying to sell perfume when they are focusing on comedy, you can tell the brand deal is only to benefit the influencer.
E: I think I pay less attention to brand sponsored Instagram posts now actually, because there are integrated ads in Instagram feeds as well, which I usually scroll past. On Youtube it’s a little different because I will actively click on videos I know contain sponsored content. I watch despite this though because of the entertainment value of watching the video with the person I subscribed to.
When it comes to brands, what is more important for you – their product/service or the ethics and values of the organisation?
O: I think I am now starting to sway more towards the ethics and values of the organisation, I feel like this is important.
E: Ethics and values of organisations are definitely more important for me. I have, and continue to, boycott certain brands because of their reported negligence.
Do you use ad blocking software on your phone and laptop?
O: Yes, I have AdBlocker on my laptop.
E: No actually… and I don’t have a good reason for why I don’t! I should really download one.
What type of advertising grabs your attention the most, if any?
O: A video that pops up on the screen or an animated post. One that moves will grab my attention.
E: Advertisements based on my browsing history usually grab my attention because they show things I have awareness of already. Especially if they show deals on things I had previously considered purchasing.
Do you listen to podcasts? If so, what are your favourite shows? If not, is there any reason why you don’t listen to them?
O: No, can never find the time to listen to them all the way through.
E: I don’t listen to podcasts very regularly. Most recently though, I listened to some of Estee Lalonde’s (mentioned earlier) podcast, called “The Heart of It”. Although, I spend most of my listening time with music and audiobooks.
What about emails? Do you like getting them from brands?
O: I have recently unsubscribed from many as they continuously send out emails that I don’t really want to see, as they also fill up my inbox. The only reason you usually end up subscribed is because you brought something from them one time. It can get very annoying.
E: Like Olivia, I have unsubscribed from a lot of newsletters too. Sometimes it’s good to get promo codes and sale notifications, but for the most part I don’t like getting these emails. It just reminds me to purchase more from these brands, even if I don’t need anything.
What do you think will be the hottest social media channel in 2018?
O: I still think YouTube is going to blow up massively, it is so underrated at the moment but due to new-coming vloggers and people documenting their lives in video form, I feel that it will become the new hot trend of 2018.
E: Maybe Instagram? It’s quite popular already but as they keep launching new features in direct competition to Snapchat, more users will be tempted to stick to Instagram.
And which do you think you’ll have deleted from your phone before the year is out?
O: Probably would have deleted the Facebook app from my phone, but not deleted the account. It is distracting when you’re not very disciplined with your phone.
E: Agreed. I rarely open the Facebook app since I don’t enjoy scrolling through my newsfeed –it seems to just be spammed with lots of videos.
Finally, how long do you think you could go without your phone?
O: Despite the fact that I like checking in on my family and seeing how people are doing, if I had to, I could live without my phone completely. I don’t need it continuously attached to my hand. I honestly think that people these days are too attached to the social media part of life, that they’ve detached themselves from reality and lost the ability to be social in real life (such as talking, they’d much rather message). Especially in the current generation, it is very sad to see and I can only expect it to get worse as phones become such a huge part of people’s lives.
E: To be honest, I feel like my friends and family would appreciate if I went on my phone a bit more. I’m not great at staying in touch and immediately responding to things… I would willingly go two weeks without a phone -granted I knew how to get to places I needed to go without using Google Maps!