Two voices in marketing and communications that I admire, Ike Pigott and Mack Collier were having a discussion about the state of social media. Since I don't have a good way to collect the tweets, you can search for trendspotters, and SM Evangelists to get some context.
The recap is that they were talking about looking at social media now and extrapolating that.
Some of the points that surfaced that I found particularly interesting to mull over were:
- Social media is still in the Model-T stage as an industry. It's a breakthrough but the current tools still need to be refined. Of course, because it's easier to make online social tools than offline automobiles we are seeing a broader variety of models... if not not a great range of colors.
- Building on that thought, Social Media can easily be overblown by SM evangelists who want to use social media to solve all problems. The current boundaries of SM need to be understood and respected.
- And adding to that thought, for people engaged in SM it feels like a very big space but there are still large majorities of people that aren't 'engaging' through the Web2.0 tools that are synonimous with SM. (That's not to say they aren't engaging in other ways)
- But, finally, recognizing that all these factors don't mean that Social Media doesn't portend a major shift in how we communicate. Just as the history of the car has shown what can grow out of a single model car, the Model-T, social media is just beginning to write it's own history.
I won't try to prognosticate on what the future will bring but I will say that I'm trying to learn what I can now and understand how to make SM worthwhile for both a personal and business applications.
What are you doing to prepare for the future?