The jury is still out, but I think I’m going to give Facebook a thumbs up for changing from the Fan Page to allowing users to “Like” a page. Here’s why… In the past, I’ve had clients who were uncomfortable asking people to become a “fan” of their organization or their work. The semantic change might help these clients and others feel a little more comfortable with building relationships through Facebook without sounding too self-serving or cocky.
Sometimes I hear clients or colleagues refer to me as a “Social Media Expert.” While it’s very flattering, to be honest, I’ve never really been comfortable with the title. I am a marketer (with, hopefully, some level of expertise) who often uses social media as a tool to engage consumers in conversation. I’ve long maintained that if you really want a “Social Media Expert,” you should hire a teenager. (You’ll sacrifice the marketing end, of course, but most teenagers know more about social media than most professional marketers will ever know).
Over the holidays, I got to spend time with family, including my 14-year-old nephew Matt, a true “Social Media Expert.” Matt asked me some questions about Blabbermouth, and showed some real interest in what I do. He asked, in particular, about a YouTube video I had done for my business. I told him that if he wanted to make his own Blabbermouth video – and if he did a good job – I would feature it on my Web site. He did a good job with it, so…
Presenting a Matt Goodman Production, “What is a Blabbermouth”:
Matt is a veteran YouTube video maker. I feel pretty confident that once he starts sharing this video with his friends and online social networks, it will have the highest number of views of any video I have made. Thanks, Matt. Great job!
Did you see the article on NYTimes.com – How to Market Your Business With Facebook? Most of the clients I’ve consulted are on board with using Facebook as a marketing tool. But, like with all social media tools, they have one big fear… Will it last?
They were around when everyone was saying, “You have to get on MySpace.” Some of them bit, created a MySpace page, built a following, and then left it alone for a while. Now, if they hear MySpace mentioned at all, it’s: “Nobody’s on MySpace anymore!”
Some of you want to jump in to these social media tools, but you’re afraid of wasting your very limited time in something that’s going to go away pretty soon. Ask me if Twitter will be around in 5 years, my answer – maybe. Will MySpace? Not as a social media site.
Will Facebook be around for a long time? My answer? YES!
Of course, it’s my opinion, but here’s my thinking:
Remember switching from records to cassette tapes and then tapes to CDs? What about BetaMax tapes to VHS and VHS to DVD?
We’re always reluctant to changing media devices, because we already built up libraries. We think, “I already have all of these VHS tapes, I don’t want to start over with these newfangled DVDs!” But, we ended up making the change, because the DVDs worked better. If we could have upgraded the functionality of our VHS tapes, we wouldn’t have made the switch.
Same thing goes with Facebook. There are well over 300 million Facebook users. And, most of us have built up our networks of friends, colleagues, people we went to elementary school with, and more. We don’t want to have to find all of those people all over again when “the next big thing” comes out and tries to replace Facebook.
But, unlike VHS tapes or records, Facebook has the ability to upgrade itself constantly (which it does, and we are reluctant every time, until we get used to it). Say what you will about Zuckerberg and crew, but those guys are smart. They aren’t worried about competing with they “next big thing,” they are always working to make sure that Facebook continues to be “the next big thing.”
So, if you’re waiting to use Facebook as a communication tool because you’re not sure it will be around… I say stop waiting and climb on board. I’m confident it will be useful for you for a while (as long as you remember it is not like traditional advertising, but a place to build relationships — but I digress. That’s a conversation for another time).
What do you think? How long will Facebook dominate social media? How do you think we will be using it differently in 5 years? 10 years?