The rise of Social media in 2012
Despite gloomy predictions of doom from a few naysayers, there seems little reason to doubt that social media in 2012 is only going to grow in importance.
The use of email has been declining steadily in the last few years. More and more users are turning to social networks for their communications. It's hardly a wonder, either. With social media:
- You know and trust all the people talking to you.
- Through “Likes” and “Retweets” you only see content your friends approve of.
- Advertising is less intrusive, and spam is practically unknown.
Long story short, social users are permanently “opted out” from outside influences that haven't been screened through their social network.
It's the same with social news sites. News aggregators have gone from merely collecting stories to being heavily community-driven. Some, like Reddit, have even begun to become news-makers as well, leveraging their political power towards community goals, and succeeding.
Any business serious about marketing online needs to be taking action now to harness social media for itself, lest it get left behind in the social rush.
Here are just a few things your business needs to do to keep afloat as the social media flood rises:
1. Join in the conversation
Like I said in a previous post, the conversation is happening whether you want it to or not. People ARE talking about your company in their social networks. You need to get out there and join in, talking to customers and honestly listening to them.
Then, while you're at it:
2. Start new conversations
People are becoming very jealous of their online time. They often won't even watch a five-minute video unless it comes recommended. You need to get people talking. You have to be recommended by people to get your message out.
· Post links to Reddit and Digg, and hang around to talk afterwards
· Honestly ask questions on your Facebook page and listen to the answers. Be responsive!
3. Make some apps
A popular app spreads like wildfire across social networks. As mobile usage grows, a useful app is the perfect way to insert yourself into people's digital lives.
In short, you need to talk, and get talked about. Do whatever it takes to get NOTICED. Social media is only going to grow in influence, and you need it on your side.
Parting question: What are you doing to expand your social media impact in 2012?