Social Media and its Impacts on Society
What Is Social Media?
Use of web-based technologies allowing the creation and exchange of user-generated content. Blending of technology and social.
“The “social” in social media implies a conversation. The difference between social media and the TV is that with the latter, viewers seldom engage with the programme-makers of the show that they are watching. Only in very recent times have programme makers expanded into the world of social media. Think X-Factor.
The Central Office of Information (www.coi.gov.uk) said the following in its 2009 publication “Engaging through Social Media”:
Social media is a term used to refer to online technologies and practices that are used to share opinions and information, promote discussion and build relationships.
Social media services and tools involve a combination of technology, telecommunications and some kind of social interaction. They can use a variety of different formats, for example text, pictures, video and audio.
Social media is different to traditional forms of communication such as through newspapers, television, and film.
Cheap – anyone with access to the internet (for example through public libraries)
Accessible – the tools are easy to use
Enabling – allows almost anyone to do things that previously were only the preserve of well-resourced organisations
The use of the word “Social” implies a conversation. Social media is definitely not about one-way communication to a large audience from big organisations.
Megatrends 1 – the death of control
Megatrends 2 – Fewer gatekeepers
Megatrends 3 – Fragmentation
Megatrends 4 – New web landscape
Megatrends 5 – New journalism
How big is social media in the UK?
Social Media Impact
- Social networks are moving towards payments on those platforms (eg, Facebook or using Bitcoins)
- Payments (especially mobile) are making connections with social networks
–similar to how PayPal revolutionized industry
- Social Media can quickly and positively or adversely affect company reputation
Social Media Impact
- Linked In: ww.linkedin.com
–500mm users worldwide, 44mm US
- Facebook: www.facebook.com
–2.27 B users worldwide
- Twitter: www.twitter.com
–326mm users worldwide
That’s great for the industry, but why am I utilizing Social Media?
- Industry knowledge.
–Almost impossible to keep up with all industry publications, becoming connected helps pinpoint hot issues.
- Building a personal brand.
–Keep your contacts and maintain knowledge even when changing companies or careers, develops a more comprehensive skill set.
- Becoming more effective at networking.
–A large network helps you connect to people even when you can’t help them personally.
- Networks should expand beyond core business contacts and companies
Social Media Circles
- Payments industry uses
–Lesser Extent: Twitter and Facebook
- However, Facebook has just launched Branch Out
–Professional networking using FB’s reach
- Build your network:
–Stay in touch with current and former peers
–Create community, expand contact lists and introduce connections
- Showcasing skill set:
– publishing your resume or establishing expertise for potential clients or employers to view
- Work your network, make yourself visible:
–Join groups, gather relevant information, participate in discussions, receive industry updates as they occur
- Find targeted people with a specific skill sets:
–for hiring or informational/networking purposes
- JOB SEARCH: Utilized to find jobs, people and business opportunities recommended by someone in one’s contact network – levels 1,2,3
- TALENT SEARCH: Employers can list jobs and search for potential candidates
- NETWORKING RESOUCE: Members can review circle profiles of to determine which of their existing contacts can introduce them to people they want to know
- PERSONAL-PROFESSIONAL BRANDING: Users can post their own photos and view photos of others to aid in identification
- INDUSTRY UPDATE RESOURCE: Register to follow companies to get notifications and relevant information
- INFORMATION PORTAL: Users can bookmark (profiles, jobs, etc.) to return to for future reference
- Strive for 100% completeness on profile and keep updated (new skill sets, new company)
- Continue to reach out, make connections, or reply to conversations –this pops up on your connection’s activity feed
- Post events or new products/information
- Follow companies, join and create group
- Helpful for industry info, adding contacts to network and all groups have a job posting capability
Marketing your Profile
- Include a LinkedIn link on your signature
- Ask for recommendations after completing business
- Integrate business tweets
- Optimize your profile
- Focus on developing a quality network
Blogs and Discussion Forums
- Receive real time industry updates
- Search for new product releases
- Expand marketing tools for customer base
- Reach new clients
- Follow and engage in industry discussions
- Serves as a ‘classifieds’ page or open source link
- Showcase products:
–Compare speed between dial up and wireless terminals
- Launch new marketing campaigns for companies, act as a commercial for company
- Demos for new products/services
- Build personal-professional brand
- Micro blogging site
- Sharing of industry information/updates, usually through sharing links
–Can be useful in following new companies and their technology
- Receive up to date info through following active users
- Conversation starter
- Forum to create company buzz
– External campaigns or contests
- Becoming an important marketing strategy to increase brand awareness and customer loyalty
–i.e. “LIKE” button
- Facebook has wider reach but more casual than LinkedIn
- Mixed audiences can become tricky
–Introducing Branch Out
Social Media: Differentiating Your Unique Brand
- If you are in a mid-size or larger company, your company probably has an integrated marketing social media business plan, but YOU are also your own brand
- How can you most effectively utilize social media in your life?
Enhance Social Media with Cross Links
- Helps contacts, customers and potential clients find you and keep you as a source for information
- Tells search engines (like Google or Bing) that your social profiles are all related –\
– pre-emptively occupies Google Page 1, making it more difficult for negative press to float to top
- Syndicates content—
–Reduces the need to create new content for every site daily
Tips to Enhance Social Media Platforms
- If utilizing Facebook for professional reasons, best to create two accounts –one linked with professional, and one personal and private
- Can cross link: eg social media icons on website, blogs that link to LI, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn can integrate Twitter feed
- Participate in conversations about your industry, can set up reminders via free tools to flag keywords (industry, competitor names) –Hootsuite, GoogleAlerts, TweetDeck, Socialmention.com
Integrating Social Media
- Choose the platforms that will enhance your business initiative
–you don’t need to join every site, and it’s useless to join if you aren’t interacting.
- Understand the site’s culture and/or rules
- Stay relevant and top of mind
–Follow through on commitments
–Thank others for helping you
–Do what you say you will, and thank others for helping you
Types of social networkers
- Alpha Socialisers – (a minority) people who used sites in intense short bursts to flirt,meet new people, and be entertained.
- Attention Seekers – (some) people who craved attention and comments from others,often by posting photos and customising their profiles.
- Followers – (many) people who joined sites to keep up with what their peers were doing.
Faithfuls – (many) people who typically used social networking sites to rekindle old friendships, often from school or university.
- Functionals – (a minority) people who tended to be single-minded in using sites for a particular purpose.
Source: Ofcom Social Networking Sites research, September-October 2007
- Social networking sites provide privacy options but users are generally unaware or tend to ignore such concerns
- Stalkers, terrorists, ill-doers, con-artists could benefit from such issues
- Recent scandals-England :MI-6’s director’s wife puts up photos of family on facebook.
- Facebook’s controversial decision to make visible relationship actions to entire social group
- Recent malware exploiting social networks
–Malicious Banner ads
Social and Psychological issues
- Increasing relationships but decreasing intimacy