In terms of today’s technology, Web 1.0 took a relatively long road to transform to Web 2.0. Remember that term, 2.0? It seems the term is withering away, being used less and less as social media continues to gain momentum as the all-encompassing buzz phrase. But, what is social media? Is it just a term to describe a new way to communicate? Some refer to it as a marketing method. Others maintain that social media refers to the technology behind social networking? Wasn’t networking always social?
One can hardly discuss mobile technology without bringing social media into the equation. Discuss customer service and social media is now mentioned. Find your brand on Yelp and quickly understand how customer service can create perceived opinion. Selling has been around since the beginning of time. But now social selling seems to be a trend. Can you really sell effectively without being social? Sales management has gone social as well. Have you heard about Social CRM? It’s no wonder there are still many people confused about social media and Web 2.0.
Wikipedia defines social media… “Social media are media for social interaction, using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques. Social media uses web-based technologies to turn communication into interactive dialogues. Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein also define social media as “a group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, which allows the creation and exchange of user-generated content.” Businesses also refer to social media as consumer-generated media (CGM). A common thread running through all definitions of social media is a blending of technology and social interaction for the co-creation of value.”
As we’ve heard stories about the inaccuracy of Wikipedia, can we rely upon their definition? Well, that’s another story for another day. But, within Wikipedia’s definition, Kaplan and Haenlein bring up a good point in defining social media as, “a group of internet-based applications.” Is that really a definition, or just theory or interpretation? Besides, can the definition of social media be accurate without mention of communication? Maybe the best way to define social media is the last line of the Wikipedia definition, “A common thread… a blending of technology and social interaction for the co-creation of value.”
As reported at The Creative Department, a recent report comparing the growth of social media and email revealed that both experienced healthy increases in 2010.
According to analysis from the blog Royal Pingdom, Twitter added 100 million accounts last year and hosted some 25 billion Tweets. Facebook added 250 million new users and surpassed 600 million users worldwide. About 70 percent of Facebook members reside outside of the United States, according to the report.
Facebook users also shared 30 billion pieces of content each month throughout 2010, uploaded 20 million videos each month and installed 20 million applications, including such popular games as Farmville and Cityville, each day.
As for email, there were 107 trillion messages sent last year, which averages to 294 billion per day. There were 2 billion email users with a total of 3 billion email accounts. In all, email grew by nearly 500 million users in 2010, the report found.
Facebook’s dominance among social media is well documented. According to a report from marketing firm L2, the site’s members account for one in 12 people on the planet. Members spend more than 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook, and the site accounts for 25 percent of all U.S. page views.
Day in, and day out, I field 10-20 questions about social media. While exploring and learning about social media many are still coming to grips how to use social media, how to use it effectively, and how to use it for marketing purposes. Seeming to be overwhelmed by the possibilities, often the next questions focus on the future of social media, whether or not it’s a fad, and is it here to stay? All reasonable questions.
In December 2010, Focus Research released the report, 2011 Trends Report: Social Media Marketing, which will certainly help me answer the questions about the future of social media.
The report’s Executive Summary states: Social media’s days as a “fad” and “the next big thing” are long gone. It’s here to stay, and it’s a rapidly changing space — especially in terms of marketing. What social media marketing trends will emerge in the coming year? In this Focus Trends Report, Focus Experts Jay Baer, Michael Brenner, Frank Days, Paul Dunay, Maggie Fox, Stephanie Marx, Tom Pick, Mark Schaefer and Lee Traupel share their 2011 predictions for social media marketing.
According to the report, social media marketing trends for 2011 include:
1. Social efforts will permeate the enterprise.
2. Widespread consolidation will occur on multiple fronts.
3. Stronger focus on global audiences.
4. Social media will become increasingly mobile.
5. Metrics will mature.
6. Social media will become targetable.
7. Facebook advertising will continue to improve — and get more expensive.
8. Listening will improve and become increasingly important.
9. Marketers and brands will think like publishers/broadcasters.
10. ‘Hard’ ROI will remain elusive.
The complete report may be downloaded HERE.
After reading the report, be sure to check out the entire discussion and join the conversation HERE.
There have been ample examples of how mommy bloggers are a powerful, influential group. Now comes data to back it up.
A study commissioned by Child’s Play Communications from the NPD Group Inc. found that 79 percent of moms with children under 18 are active in social media. One in four of those moms has also purchased a children’s product because of a recommendation from a social networking site or blog.
The numbers go up as moms are more active online. It found that 43 percent of moms are daily users of social media, and have bought something for their children because of a recommendation from these sites.
Breaking it down further, 55 percent said they purchased a product because of a personal review blog while 40 percent said they did so because of a Facebook recommendation.
Read more Social Media info HERE.
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