Social Media

Social Media Increasingly a Connection Point and Mobile Payments Tool

November 20, 2018         By: Steven Anderson

Social media; it’s grown from a toy to a powerful new tool in the field. It keeps people connected and allows people–and organizations–to sell goods and services. That’s not all it can do, as discovered by Bank of America, who tipped us off to its Trends in Consumer Mobility Report, which showed us that not only is social media the newest icebreaker for young folks, but it’s also a growing tool for mobile payments use.

The Bank of America report noted that peer-to-peer (P2P) payments were still on the rise, with 44 percent now turning to this technology. Growth is also seen in those willing to use P2P as a gift-giving system, with 81 percent ready to do so. Birthdays were the leading reason for 58 percent, while both graduations and holidays drew interest from 48 percent of users.

A growing majority–58 percent–also expects to eventually see the death of cash ‘within their lifetime”. This might sound pie-in-the-sky, but 19 percent currently believe that they could go without cash for an entire year.

It only gets better; 70 percent of respondents were turning to mobile banking, and biometrics made worthwhile protection for many. Fingerprints were acceptable to 69 percent, while 65 percent looked to use voice recognition. Half were fine with facial recognition, and 44 percent were game for retinal scanning. The earliest adopters here, surprisingly enough, were baby boomers.

It’s not surprising to see Bank of America increasingly push digital in light of this news. Really, it’s not surprising to see anyone’s digital push these days. Anecdotally, we knew this was where people were going, and now, we have the complete data to confirm it. Here we see why P2P payments apps are doing so well and why bank branches are closing up. We can begin to understand that mobile payments may not have a lot of ground objectively, but seem to be gaining it fairly steadily as the world becomes more of a place where such tools are used.

The world is a rapidly changing place, and whether it’s a man on the moon or a phone that lets us pay people, change is everywhere. Bank of America’s study only underscores the point we likely already knew.