What Does LOL Mean?

In the top 5 of most researched on Google, alongside “sexist” and “philanthropist”, there is the word “LOL”. What does this say about the innovation of the pop culture?

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Statistically, who is part of the Kim Kardashian generation knows what LOL means. Since 2011, the world LOL – acronym of Laugh(ing) Out Loud – has been included in the Oxford English Dictionary and has increased greatly popular in the last year, not only on Internet or in the Anglo Saxon languages. Slate writes that the first use of LOL dates back to 1989, when the acronym (and its meaning) was inserted in the FidoNews newsletter.

THE SPEED OF INNOVATION

It took more than 7 years before the Italians found out about the acronym and started asking themselves what it meant. The statistic has been published in Italy in 2018 by Google Trends. A good way to understand how fast the language innovations spread is by looking at social medias. The majority of new languages come from apps, that move from one platform to another thanks to their users before reaching new medias.

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A PLATFORM FOR EVERY AGE

Let’s not paint all social medias with the same brush. The list below shows the most used platforms based on the user age:

  1. Online games chatroom – elementary school or older
  2. Whatsapp – 9 yo or older
  3. Tik Tok – 12 yo or older
  4. Snap Chat – 13/18 yo
  5. Messenger – main users are between 25 and 45 yo
  6. Instagram – mostly used by 18/35 yo
  7. Facebook – in Italy is the most used social media by 35 yo and older

The fragmentation of the communication makes the marketing world more and more complex. There are no common languages, there are no metrics or KPI with the same meanings. This is why it is important to know who we are going to talk to and where to find them. Listening is vital.

WHY IS THE DATA FROM GOOGLE TRENDS IS “AN ICEBERG”?

Google Trends it is a great source of informations to understand marketing researches, but often is not used in its full potential. Being a text base research it is also measurable. The new way of expression are not only words anymore, but also – and mostly – images, videos and gestualities. Of course, these forms of language are not shown in the statistics as they are not measurable: the unwritten language is used more and more every day. Even online chatrooms, born for sending short texts, use unwritten languages such as emojis, images and vocal messages.
Today, commercials and advertises change more slowly than innovative forms of expressions since the first are meant only for consumers that have means for buy products. But kids of today are going to be the consumers of tomorrow. Let’s never stop to listen and experiment.

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