The social media landscape is continually changing. Identify and discuss some implications for brands that you see going forward and how this might impact a company’s existing social media strategy. Is this implication a result of changes in human behavior, changes in technology, or both? Why?
One of the biggest implications brands will face in the changing social media landscape is the introduction of new social media tools and the learning curve that comes with them. This year saw dramatic growth in new social media tools like Pinterest, with 5,124 percent growth, and Instagram, with 17,319 percent growth. Analyst James Murray with Experian explains that, “Offering deeper functionality combined with a lower technical barrier to entry will mean new leaders in social media being created in a matter of days versus weeks and months (Holmes, 2012).” This implication reflects changes in both human behavior and technological growth, as social media venues expand and become more simplified and diverse, users are more inclined to become active. But the evolution of technology has led users to become more reliant on simplified interfaces.
However, social media will begin helping companies improve inter-office communications. Although thus far, social media has largely been limited to marketing and community building functions, social media is poised to become an office productivity tool, allowing employees to communicate and collaborate via instant messaging, wikis, virtual work groups and centralized message boards. E-mail is becoming a tool of the past, and even human resources departments are using social media already to communicate with job applicants and streamline the application process. Sales teams have begun using social media to communicate with and track customers through the sales funnel (Holmes, 2012). Dealer.com, for example, is the automotive industry’s leading provider of dealership website marketing solutions. The company’s employees use instant messaging to communicate with one another. This benefits dealers, because when an account representative is unavailable, another representative can speak with the dealer on the phone while chatting with that dealer’s assigned representative. But the evolution in the way we work is not solely due to the changing technology that we work with, but can also be attributed to the way we behave as well. For example, car shoppers today want information instantly. While shoppers 20, even 10, years ago, drove from car lot to car lot, shaking hands and negotiating with salesmen for hours, shoppers today can compare vehicles side by side online and gather safety information, specs, pricing and even chat with sales representatives. Today’s car shoppers demand a dealer’s best price before they set foot in the showroom, and today’s car dealers have no choice but to keep up with the competition.
Holmes, R. (2012, December 11). 5 Ways Social Media Will Change the Way You Work in 2013. Forbes Magazine. Retrieved from http://www.forbes.com/sites/ciocentral/2012/12/11/5-ways-social-media-will-change-the-way-you-work-in-2013/.