===>Guest Post by Jonathan Craft<===
Pretty much everyone has heard of social media, and can probably name a website that falls into this category, but what does it actually mean, and how is it being used?
Social media is the act of using web based and mobile technologies to turn communication into interactive dialogue. It can be used purely for recreation, or more increasingly in a commercial sense.
It is much more than just Facebook and Twitter. Throw Internet forums, web blogs, micro blogging, wikis, podcasts, photographs and vodcasts into the mix and all of a sudden you have a whole host of interacting techniques between yourself and your customer. Now I don’t advise using every form of social media, but developing just a couple will enhance your presence on the web. See how I doubled my visitor count here.
Social Media gurus, Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein created a classification scheme in 2010 that outlined 6 different social media platforms.
1. Collaborative Projects (Wikipedia)
3. Content Communities (Youtube)
4. Social Networking Sites (Facebook)
5. Virtual Game Worlds (World of Warcraft)
6. Virtual Social Worlds (Second Life)
Technologies inside these social media platforms include blogs, picture sharing, vlogs, wall postings, email, instant messaging and music sharing. These technologies can be integrated via API into one place by social networking aggregation platforms such as iGoogle, Doozly and Sociagg. Social bookmarking via sites such as StumbleUpon and Delicious is also very popular. This is a great way to get your articles distributed, especially if your business tends to be news related.
How is social media affecting our everyday life’s? Here are a few facts from a recent study by the University of Maryland in the US.
· In the United States, social networking accounts for 22% of all time spent online.
· In December 2009, Twitter processed more than one billion tweets and averages 40 million tweets daily.
· As of June 2011 Facebook has 750 million users
· Australia has some of the highest social media usage in the world. In usage of Facebook Australia ranks the highest with over 9 million users spending on average 9 hours per month on the website
· The total amount of minutes spent on Facebook in the US alone increases by 700 percent on a year by year basis.
As you can see social media activity accounts for an extremely high percentage of daily internet usage and should not be sniffed at when it comes to promoting your business online. Good networking takes time, but the rewards can be substantial. At North Leeds – News we are extremely active on many social media platforms and couldn’t be as successful without it.