The Power of Ever-Evolving Social Media

March 31, 2008 by Lisa Oshima | Social Media

The power of social media (including social networking) constantly amazes me. It keeps people in touch with each other, facilitates introductions that may otherwise never have happened, and so much more.  Since I first started writing this blog a year and a half ago, I’ve received emails and introductions from all sorts of interesting people – entrepreneurs, techies, mobile industry followers, media agencies, etc. – some famous in tech circles, others not.  Several of these introductions have remained electronic ‘friendships’ over email or Facebook.  Others have resulted in ‘real life’ friendships, when one of us realizes we have friends in common or we meet face-to-face at an industry event.  Today, I got to thinking about how amazing this really is when social media faciltated yet another interesting introduction….

A man who works in the Business Development Agency for a European country, pinged me on LinkedIn.  He wanted to know whether I would be interested in consulting for companies in his country that are expanding to the US.  In the course of our email conversation, he wrote:

I’ve known for a long time [about] the many different forms of social media interaction, including Internet forums, message boards, weblogs, wikis, podcasts, etc., but I never thought of it as something more than personal interaction… kid’s stuff that made a few people very rich. I guess I was quite wrong. So, I’ve returned a few times to your blog, searched a few other related blogs and started researching that issue more extensively. I feel, in fact, that there may be a much more around that concept than I thought.

His email made me pause.  Living in San Francisco, a stones throw from Silicon Valley, where “social media” is pre-printed on everyone’s “buzz word bingo” card, it’s easy to forget that most people – especially those outside of America are still just beginning to understand the potential of social media.  Five years ago, when I was living in the UK, I would have never anticipated that I’d be writing a blog or (gasp) meeting people over the internet.  My British friends all thought I was crazy and looked at me strangely when I first mentioned that I was writing a blog.  Today, at least one of them has a blog, and most of the others are on Facebook.  And, that’s the tip of the iceberg. The world is only just beginning to see the potential of social media, and social networking is just the start.

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  • I couldn't agree more. Social media seems to bring a perfect alternative to finding people – whether those people are potential users, employees or friends – social media provides a great means for making friends and showcasing start-ups at almost zero the cost.

  • [this is good]

    Lisa – here are some interesting trends based on my current research that you may find useful:

    For the Period Jan 2007 – Jan 2008 (online activity only)

    Retail Music & Movies have seen a decline. In contracts multi-media sites (YouTube) are seeing a healthy share of “internet time”.

    Classified & Personals are on the decline giving way to Social Nerworking site and out pacing the multi-media sites!

    What I think has been shocking is that normally the growth has been “contained” to the valley and then leaks to the rest of the word … in the case of Social Networks UK & Canada lead the way (prolly the cold weather!). This is why non-valley folks are having to get educated much faster social media then previous trends. my $0.02 😉

    p.s Just finished a great survey on mobile too!






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