Businesses haven't put a leash on Social Media Platforms yet and they change often. Are there any indicators of where they will go next?
I like to stay a step ahead of the Platforms and they change so often it is hard to do, but not impossible. I would like to know if there are some changes or indicators of what the "next big thing" will be with Social Media Platforms.
Great question! And virtually impossible to answer, because of how quickly our tastes change. It’s easy for us to look at something and understand it makes sense but all too often fads don't make any sense or have any trends. Here is what we know, many robust platforms are coming out of large, credible Universities with advanced programs, think about the resources the students have available to them. We know that many of the founders and developers are college students, and we know that many are creating new technologies everyday although not all are successful. So the things we need to watch are, degreed programs with resources, as well as the number of graduates and graduate projects coming out them. We need to watch some of the smaller platforms that are gaining ground (like Reddit and Tublr) and see how often they are being discussed and shared. We need to look at large companies like Google, Yahoo and yes, even face book as they show interest in smaller platforms like instagram and vine. And we need to have our finger on the pulse of what the next generation is interested in and how their tastes change by watching buying trends, user trends, and habits. The users of these platforms are the 17-20 year olds who are entering college and who will be the next level users of the next big thing.
As marketers in order to channel to most effective message to our customers, we must know where they all "hang out" online. We shouldn't necessarily be worrying about the next big platform, but rather what are the habits of our customers.
To get the highest reach in our posts, we will want to post on platforms that have the highest daily traffic. Our posts are not relevant to everyone though, which is where targeting comes in. We can do that by utilizing all of the niche platforms by establishing expertise on online forums such as this or Reddit like Cynthia had mentioned.
One method I've used to find these niche platforms is by paying attention to what website links people refer each other to. The problem sometimes is that keeping track of all these different websites can be either A) very time consuming or B) fruitless. If you concentrate your efforts efficiently this can prove to be very successful.
Hi. I will share just 2 of the drivers in China that also reflect global changes.
1. We are seeing massive take up of mobile social. Reason: smart phones. Most of the recent acquisitions by global social media players have been in mobile related social (e.g. Facebook and WhatsApp). Look at mobile/then consider the social sharing element. (in China it's "WeChat"). Key indicators (app download)
2. Social is segmenting. Facebook served to "onboard" people into social. Keixin and RenRen did the same in China. We are now seeing Social Communities growing in specific areas of interest. Consider "Snapshot", Instagram etc). See where the next special interest communities are growing (key indicators. growth & activity).
They are two, there are a number of others.
if you haven't done so already, i would focus effort on google+. although g+ has lagged the other major social medis platforms i think it's poised for significant growth and expansion in the near future. furthermore, since g+ is a google platform, you can get SEO benefit when people on g+ share your content.
finally, regardless of what the next big social media platform will be, as long as you're using social media (and other methods) to build an email or SMS list of customers and prospects, you'll always be safe since you can use your list to drive engagement on any new social media platform that may come along.
Hi Lashondra- I'm a big believer that in today's new world, we're ALL 'content curators'-whether via Facebook or Twitter links to content, to sharing You Tube videos, or Instagram pics..etc... everyone is creating content..and I think we're in a phase now, where the platforms that are popular simply organize and make searching for conversations or content easy to find either via SEO/Search and #hashtags, keyword searches. Smart brands allow consumers to tap a button and instantly 'share' content with their communities (to take viral and spread)...take eBay for example..it used to be where you had to be on eBay to see auctions..now...through Facebook or Twitter, with simple #hashtag searching, you can easily find items of interest or auctions you might want to bid on. Content is what it's all about-and the next phase of platforms will likely find new ways to monetize consumer content (beyond banner/strip ads), new ways to use the metric data for analysis and strategy, and more ways to bring value to each platform's services (as you see both Twitter and Facebook doing now). They'll each buy up fledging other platforms (like FB buying Instagram and intergrating it into their world). Appreciate your passion for SM...thanks.