Social Content … Then, Now and Ahead

Remember way back when? That was about 30 years ago when content (social and otherwise) was disseminated very differently than it is now. Before the Internet, anything digital, social media, brand campaigns, email and websites, your choices for building your brand and refining your content were television ads, print ads and radio ads; and your social networks were personal Tupperware parties, Avon get-togethers or Amway, among others.

It seems like a hundred years ago that some of the largest Dallas agencies were ever able to make any headway in such an archaic setting. Yet, they did, even if it was sometimes a manic scramble to stay current on the latest technologies and gadgets. Dallas along with other major hubs was smack dab in the middle of a digital revolution. And, yes, it was painful -- and exciting. But, we soldiered on, adjusting somehow to ‘digital’ showing up in everything we touched or read about.

Depending on where you’re sharing, liking, unliking and so forth, you’ll be interested to see what social content was like a few years back. Take a look at the list of nominees for the 2006 Social Networking Awards. What’s changed in 8 years?

    • MySpace
    • Friendster
    • Multiply
    • hi5
    • Piczo
    • Tagworld
    • Bebo
    • Tagged
    • Orkut
    • Xanga
    • Facebook
    • Facebox
    • LinkedIn
    • Vox

In 2010, the waters of social media were making waves. Facebook overtook Google. Media events such as the BP oil spill dominated world news with the help of Stephen Colbert’s multi-retweeted tweet. The 10 billionth Twitter’s tweet was posted in March 2010 and corporate blogging accounted for 14% of all blogs. You can read scads more social media factoids for 2010.

In July 2012, Jonah Sachs authored, Winning the Story Wars, making a compelling observation about social media. He said humans are going back to our storytelling roots, comparing the oral tradition of storytelling, which covers most of human history, to the broadcast era – the past 100 years, and now the ‘digitorial’ era – driven by social media and mobile.

The gist of Sach’s message still resonates: in an overcrowded media marketplace you either tell good stories that inspire, instruct, inform or otherwise engage people or – you get immediately forgotten.

Just last year, 2013 showed some impressive signs of life:

    • 1 million websites integrated with Facebook
    • 23% of users check Facebook 5 times or more daily
    • 56% of customer tweets are being ignored
    • 34% of marketers generated leads on Twitter
    • Google’s +1 button is used 5 million times a day
    • 80% of Pinterest users are female

Today social content has matured into a much sought-after medium that is spilling over into every aspect of our work and play. It’s all about digital and mobile everywhere you turn.

Here we are in the middle of 2014 and the FIFA World Cup, so what could be more relevant than to see how people are using their smartphones during the World Cup.

58% to check the score; get the latest news from tournament overall, latest news from their team
46% to watch live streamed games; listen to streamed audio of the games; watch highlights/best goals
37% to use phone-based ticketing; gamble; sign up for alerts; download official app; download unofficial app
30% to manage fantasy league; talk about/comment on events/matches; take pictures/videos of friends enjoying games

What's ahead for social networks worldwide by 2017 (in millions)?

    • China 525.4
    • United States 183.8
    • India 282.9
    • Brazil 110
    • Indonesia 109.9
    • Russia 75
    • Germany 39.4