David Armano of HarvardBusiness.org published on Monday what he believes to be the social media trends in 2010. I think he hit the nail on the head.
1. Social media begins to look less social
Armano mentions the hyperactive updaters on Facebook and the ability to “hide” them. For me, the problem on Facebook hasn’t been the frequency of updates it’s been the amount of personal information being put out there. I cringe whenever I see a status update that’s a novel long about baby’s daddy drama or whatever. Maybe Facebook should start limiting the amount of characters in status updates.
2. Corporations look to scale
Here Armano talks about Best Buy’s Twelpforce and how they use employees as customer support on Twitter. This just makes sense. Essentially it is like a call center and bigger corporations should look into it.
3. Social business becomes serious play
“Relatively new networks such as Foursquare are touted for the focus on making networked activity local and mobile. However, it also has a game-like quality to it which brings out the competitor in the user.” I’m a big fan of Foursquare. I like how small businesses in bigger cities are using it as an incentive to buy their products. A coffee shop may have a Foursquare promotion that gives a free latte to the “mayor” of said coffee shop.
4. Your company will have a social media policy (and it might actually be enforced)
This will become a must. I don’t like the idea of banning social networks though. I think companies can learn to integrate them and help their brand.
5. Mobile becomes a social media lifeline
A “social media break” replaces the “smoke break.” The companies that do ban social networks will see employees stepping out and jumping on their smart phone for a social media break.
6. Sharing no longer means e-mail
“The New York Times iPhone application recently added sharing functionality which allows a user to easily broadcast an article across networks such as Facebook and Twitter.” This is an issue of user behavior. I think that sharing via email has decreased a lot over the last year. Or at least I’ve noticed that I’m not getting emailed funny videos as much as I used to, now I’m seeing those via friends on Facebook or Twitter.