Disclaimer: these predictions are not entirely the belief of SEO.com as an organization, or the people that work for SEO.com. These predictions are speculated and completely FUN, and more importantly, if you look hard enough between the lines, you’ll find some good “nuggets” for the upcoming year’s social media strategy.
Feel free to view Part 1 of my 2010 Predictions: Search Engines.
The World of Social Media
What We Know-
• Twitter and Facebook dominate the scene, but Twitter has no revenue stream while Facebook becomes the dominating force in Social.
• Twitter and Facebook have become the way people share information, and it is affecting social bookmarking sites such as Digg.
• Twitter has redefined the way people communicate and the way search engines determine what is popular.
What We Suspect-
• Twitter seems to have reached its potential, and is going to be hard pressed to grow any further in its current form.
• In order for Facebook to retain, and increase users, keep an eye out for a completely redefined “Group” option, or a vertical-ization of a new public section.
• It will be a shock if Twitter isn’t acquired by a larger company by the end of 2010
How Will it Happen?
(Facebook Prepares for Dominance)
One of the most important things we’ll see happen between Twitter, Facebook and upcoming Social Media like Foursquare, is definition. Social media sites will define their purpose, their existence, and their unique selling position (USP) this year.
Facebook is currently one of the strongest ways to advertise to targeted demographics and markets, while Twitter is the best way to “listen in” and distribute news, and information to the masses. As Twitter and Facebook start to better define their USP, corporate America should become more comfortable in developing marketing strategies with social media in 2010.
The first thing that will come with social media “definition” is a mutual goal with Twitter and Facebook. Both entities will make sure users understand that Facebook is not Twitter, and Twitter is not Facebook. The general public will learn and understand they are not the same thing, and there are benefits for using both mediums. By making this point clear to users, both companies should see an increase in users and interaction between users. I predict that the two companies will embrace each other, and incorporate each others’ strength. There is no better way to do this than with an official partnership, or even a merger. (As a side note, “TwitFace” could become Google’s worst nightmare.)
If Facebook (being the bigger fish in the pond) doesn’t take Twitter to be its lawfully wedded partner, then I predict that we will see some big changes for Facebook coming in the ways of “Group” and vertical-ization of a new public profile option.
Facebook’s next direction (in my humblest of opinions) needs to focus on having an option for “like- minded” strangers to connect without giving away the farm, personal family info, embarrassing photos of you that your jackass friend put up. The reason the current “fan pages” don’t work is because there is no seamless interface between you and your fan page. If this all comes to fruition then I strongly believe that we will see Twitter slowly suffer. Facebook would have serious leverage in providing and developing real-time search (RTS) abilities with the new public profile option (all enhanced by the Friendfeed acquisition), in addition to having the ability to connect complete strangers with similar interests.
Twitter will be the most vulnerable company that 53M+ users can’t live without, simply because it makes no money. Again, if a partnership can’t come together with Facebook, then the next logical option would be for Internet King Google to buy up the company so they could strictly control the RTS scene. And Google already has rumors circulating that they are interested. We will then see the most famous tweet of all time from @mattcutts: “What? It was either buy Twitter or create Gtweet.”
THE WORST THING THAT CAN HAPPEN TO SOCIAL MEDIA
Social Media War: Facebook bans all Twitter language from status updates because it only comes across as gibberish to non-Twitter users.
THE BEST THING THAT CAN HAPPEN TO SOCIAL MEDIA
Facebook develops a Twitter translator that will automatically translate Twitter language into readable phrases for non-Twitter users to better understand. In addition Facebook will create a “Gaming Facebook Platform” so I don’t have to know what happens to your Farm or Mob family. Just sayin’…
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