Facebook reached the coveted mark of 350 million members last month and it is growing at a swifter rate than before. People of all generations, from second graders to nonagenarians refuge in this haven of theirs at least once a day and if research reports are to be believed, then Facebook and other social media sites are driving more than 25% of the web traffic.
With expansion comes the evolution as well and the analysts believe that the year 2010 will see some changes of monumental proportions in the way social media platform is used and then it will be the capability, rather than the technology which will be innovated.
The trends can be surmised as follows:
1. Whatever you will do on the internet, watch movies, videos, shop, chat, download- social media will be an active and integrated component of it all. There will be no escape from the pervasive presence of social media components and it will be a single cohesive force that will bind and channelize the things together.
2. Till last year the developers were innovative and upgrading technology to make room for open end APIs and cross platform functionability. But this year, it would be the way the existing technology is used would be innovated and improvised upon. Content will play a very important role and creativity will be at its Pinnacle.
3. The growing number of mobile web users and the launch of iPhone 4 are a very positive indication that it would be the highly conspicuous mobile phone that will be in limelight and specialized content in all forms will be created for this immensely popular medium.
4. Perhaps its adieu to the search result monopoly of Google and other big search engine services. The WWW is already flooded with content on virtually anything and this year will see the focus shift from quality to quantity and there are chances that now the companies, who were at the mercy of Google SERP will now voluntarily want to de-index their site. Content ownership will be a major trend and this means the web marketers have to get ready formulating the new strategies for SEO.
5. Enterprises which had taken to social media techniques and features in order to increase their sales will be the driving force behind the shaping of next generation of social media. The most casual form of interaction between the customers and the employees will be looked upon as a source of information for further brand improvement and improvisation to the services.
6. Given the colossal amount of funds that are being channelled into internet marketing through social media, the marketers and the management would want to see a healthy Return on Investment and this will be the strategic force behind any change in their approach or technique. They are no more happy in just ideally pursuing the strategies or getting increased clicks or traffic in return. They want the money coming in now, through these marketing investments.
7. An interesting offline-online integration approach will be seen in the times to come which will facilitate things such as browsing the products offline on virtual shelves and processing the sales online.
8. The PR experts and media marketers will back to their battling grounds as companies will realize the importance of their knowledge of consumer psyche and amazing marketing strategies
9. It is universal knowledge that women are experts at communicating, relationship building and multi-channel interaction and the fact that 50% of the members on social media sites are women is a clear indication that theirs will be a force to reckon with in shaping the future of social media.
10. Till now, only the enterprises dealing in FMCG, electronics and other tangible products used Social Media for marketing purposes. But this year will see the convergence of educational, non profit and other varied types of organizations on popular social media sites.
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