Social media has exploded as a category of online discourse where people create content, share it, bookmark it and network at a prodigious rate. Examples include Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and YouTube. Because of its ease of use, speed and reach, social media is fast changing the public discourse in society and setting trends and agendas in topics that range from the environment and politics to technology and the entertainment industry.
First of all is the increasing usage of social media within customer service. In 2012, more and more businesses have utilized this tool as a way to communicate with their customers and those who haven’t kept abreast of this trend, may have profits which reflect this.
There has also been a boom in the use of social media on mobile and tablet devices. With a range of devices available that offer users many of the same abilities as their desktop computer, social media applications are plentiful, and including increased use of check in platforms and GPS, such as Facebook Places.
Some of the prevailing trends are:
New Tools for Reporting and Distribution
Social tools, such as Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr, are coming to play a new role in news reporting and distribution, while brands are taking on the role of the media by creating and publishing content themselves. Meanwhile, consumers are beginning to access digital content across more devices, often simultaneously, and content creators are responding by creating content for multiple platforms and selling access to them in new subscription offerings.
Twitter, YouTube and RSS, among other platforms, have long been lauded for their roles in news reporting and distribution in the age of real-time and social media. Now, a new crop of tools is emerging to help journalists tell stories, engage audiences and expand their reach. Although hardly a new player, Facebook is also playing an increasingly important role for working journalists. Photo-sharing app Instagram is also proving a popular tool for distributing topical imagery, soliciting feedback and attracting new followers.
Brands Become Media
Platforms such as YouTube, WordPress and Twitter have made it easier and more affordable than ever for brands to create and distribute their own content, thereby becoming media companies in their own right. Brands are investing accordingly — whether they're hiring editors, producers and social media managers, or expanding the roles of their existing teams — to create editorial, visual, audio and other kinds of content.
With the increase in social media usage, e-commerce has also increased. More and more company now has the facility to place an order for their product online. Online shopping portals like Jabong, Myntra, SnapDeal, Fashion and You etc. are also doing exceptionally well. Promoting these portals via social media has become very easy and is economical too.
In addition to lifestyle content, brands are often electing to announce new products or hiring decisions via their Twitter accounts and blogs, rather than through (or in addition to) formal press releases distributed to individual editors. Google and