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Social Media... Storm in a teacup?
 Buzz - Social Media : 

Tracey Pharoah

Skin the Cat Creative Lab

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The Changing Face of the Internet

The past few months have seen an explosion of apps, widgets and gadgets all fighting for space on your desktop. How to make sense of all these tools and websites whilst keeping up with the day to day running of your business sees most entrepeneurs running for cover...

So in a nutshell - this is a basic rundown of the 'playing field'.
Since public listing, google has had to convince their many investors that they shouldn't have waited for Facebook to go public and as a result google is throwing a lot of energy, technology and everything else they can lay their hands on playing catch up with the social media icons such as Facebook and Twitter. They have failed dismally in their previous attempts with earlier attempts such as Wave and Buzz but they have the tools, scope and financial power to really up the stakes and in so doing have  caused the other media giants to also start looking at new ways to keep us coming back to their sites.
However the biggest problem is that they think of Social Networking in terms of algorithms instead of people...
Real Live Human Being People will always have the ability to do the unexpected. Facebook is fast turning into a "JunkMail" nightmare with people 'liking' so many things that eventually they can't keep track of everything and even become bored by the clutter. People have also created pages willy-nilly and Facebook even automates this task which means there are literally tons of 'empty' pages that were generated when you listed yourself as 'Working from Home' or Living in 'Timbuktu'. Essentially Facebook are becoming 'victims' of their own success. Ultimately this is the price you pay for being 'FREE'. Their income is generated solely by advertising and these days, you can't even type 'I hate knitting' on your status update - without being inundated with ads offering you wool, knitting classes or patterns.
Twitter is experiencing a similar problem with information overload and are trying to find ways to resolve this before they lose ground, people have difficulty logging in and they are working on better ways of allowing people to run their twitter feeds directly via their websites or other tools - this ultimately relieves pressure on their server and allow for better integration which would lead to better retention statistics – no one wants a twitter feed that was last updated with "Hello World" in 2008..

Google on the other hand is the market leader in providing information - always have been. So tying their tools together in a cohesive manner that makes sense to an individual and based on that individual's specific needs and requirements makes a lot more sense. They have recognised the need for collaborative tools, small business applications and mobile systems that cater for solutions that can be adapted to any business – be it a homeopath, work from home ‘mom’ or high end retailer on Main Street.
My recommendation is use them all for what you need and if it’s for marketing, managing and promoting your business then it is imperative that you develop a strategy that is manageable, measureable and flexible and makes the most of the tools out there to drive traffic to your website and ultimately through your front door.
You are special - Your business is special. In my next segment, I'll look at what makes you or your business 'SPECIAL' and how to turn that into an effective business strategy and marketing plan.


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Buzz - Social Media
The Changing Face of the Internet

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Buzz - Social Media
Google 'Waves' goodbye to Buzz...