Steve Rubel wrote a post about Trends That Will Help Define the Future of PR and Marketing that doesn’t say anything new – but defines ideas I’ve been thinking about lately – especially that Social Networks in the future will be like “Air“: According to Rubel:
“… Social networking is here to stay – but it’s changing. As my fellow panelist Charlene Li says, it’s becoming “like air” on the Web. In essence, social networking is nothing new, really. It’s simply a digital, global and scalable manifestation of our desire to communicate with other humans. The technology makes it easy for like-minded individuals to connect and collaborate around the topics they care about. This can range from personal to professional interests. A lot of it revolves around social causes.
Today we have three big social network hubs – LinkedIn, Facebook and MySpace (an Edelman client). In addition, we have an expanding constellation of smaller social networks such as Beebo, Twitter, YouTube and the hundreds of thousands of vertical communities that comprise Ning – a do-it-yourself platform. There will be room for all of them to thrive, but consumers soon won’t need to visit these destinations to connect with their network.
Social circles are becoming portable so they can follow the consumer to any site they want to visit. Facebook and Google, for example, each have competing technology platforms that Web site owners can integrate to allow consumers and their social circle to connect in new experiences without having to sign up for another network.
Brand marketers that may be tempted to build their own social networks need to consider that there may not be room in people’s lives for more than one or two. They will need to plug into the social “air” supply that the large networks are building across the Web so that consumers can stay connected to their existing networks.
I wrote about this trend of Social Networks turning into “Air” – but not in those words, last week in a post titled Thoughts about Social Networking – where it needs to go
“… For example, everytime I order something from Amazon, it should communicate with my Facebook or MySpace account – any time go to a site and fill out a form, and it has a social networking component to it – it should connect, via a module, to the Social Graph.
Not more Social Networks are needed, but less.
What’s needed, instead, is Social Networking as a Service that all sites plug into – that’s where we’re going – that’s the only future that makes any sense to me.”
The other ideas that Steve Rubel mentioned – Attention Crash and Google Reputation are already dealt with quite a lot both in my blog and other places, so I won’t really go into them much except for one point – Friendfeed and Facebook are morphing into each other – kinda – see Facebook Live Feed Kills Twitter & FriendFeed
In a post on the The “Status Update” Mania,
” ….. new features appeared in the new Facebook interface is the Live Feed. Through this functionality, you can get a realtime update of your friends’ activities, wathever they are doing within Facebook or in other services integrated with it (Twitter, Friendfeed, Applications etc.).
“….That being said, only time will tell, but it’s pretty clear that users start looking for a sort of “social networks consolidation” and for an efficient way to limit the enormous quantity of content they consume everyday. Me too… what about you?”