Has there ever been more urgency for corporations to ditch the greed and embrace generosity? It's something that countless individuals have already started doing, of course: giving is the new taking, and sharing is the new giving.
Does it seem like your social feeds are jammed with your friends’ latest baby video or vacation pictures? Helped by Snapchat and Instagram, image-sharing has increased significantly in the past year, with more than half of Internet users now posting their own pictures and videos online, a new Pew Internet Project report reveals.
Social media and the power of peer-to-peer recommendation can boost revenue streams and brand loyalty, according to a new survey from CNN. The results of a CNN inaugural study into the power of news and recommendation (POWNAR), showed a "halo effect,” with substantially higher engagement around recommended content compared with randomly consumed content, said Didier Mormesse, senior VP of R&D and audience insight at CNN International.
The results of Latitude Research and Shareable Magazine's The New Sharing Economy study released today indicate that online sharing does indeed seem to encourage people to share offline resources such as cars and bikes, largely because they are learning to trust each other online. And they're not just sharing to save money - an equal number of people say they share to make the world a better place.
It's culturally incorrect to even suggest that the open and incessant sharing of information isn't a wonderful thing. We know more the more we know, or so the conventional wisdom goes, and not only should anything be everyone's business, but it should be provided without charge. History is a dialectic about information struggling to be free. Freedom of information evangelists call this "radical transparency" and label it an absolute good. Others might call it chaos. I worry that most of us live in the gap between this theory and reality its pursuit invents.
No matter how much we open up on the web, creating new connections online can be intimidating. Just as not everyone can start a conversation with a stranger at the bar, not everyone can comfortably start conversations in social media. Luckily, there are hundreds of online services and apps popping up, trying to solve our social awkwardness and help us discover new connections in new ways. These tools allow even the introverts among us to communicate, find friends, business partners and, yes, dates.
That’s what Fake does best: Tend social sparks until they ignite and become full-fledged communities. Connecting people to one another is not just Fake’s hobby — she has made it her career. As the cofounder of Flickr, the landmark photography site, Fake provided a place for shutterbugs to share their work; they have uploaded more than 4 billion pictures. It was a seminal service that helped launch the era of user-generated content, spurring entrepreneurs to build Web sites and businesses based on volunteer contributions.
When Peter Eckersley recently clicked on to one of America’s biggest online job sites, he was not alone for long. Using software to monitor programs running on the page of CareerBuilder.com, the researcher for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an advocacy group, saw data identifying his computer being whisked off to at least 10 outfits that track where people go on the internet. More troubling was his inability to tell what the companies did with the data. His experience goes to the heart of a battle that could shape the future of life on the web – while also having very real knock-on effects in the physical world. The digital dossiers that companies are building from the browsing, searching and other habits of ordinary web users are becoming increasingly refined. At the same time, a deluge of personal information has been unleashed publicly on the web, with Facebook’s 500m users at the forefront. With rapid inroads on both fronts being made into many traditional expectations of personal privacy, the results could prove explosive.
Shared links have a longer shelf life on Facebook than Twitter, and Buzzfeed sends more traffic through re-shares than direct clicks. That's two of the things my agency learned when we launched a stealth social-media experiment through a site we created called Jerzify Yourself. Jerzify Yourself was created in January of this year, a week after the season one finale of the popular MTV show "Jersey Shore" that attracted an audience of 4.8 million. The site, written in a few days in Flash, allows users to upload their headshot onto a stylized body and morph themselves into a Jersey Shore "Guido" or "Guidette." Or as New York's Village Voice put it: "The gist is Snooki-grade simple: upload a medium-size jpg, scale the image to fit, choose your spray-tan shade, pick your pose -- and holy Freckles McGee, you're magically recast as a human meatball." Why did we do this? To evaluate the power of social media and spreadable content.
General Electric has launched a private online community for its global network of 5,000 marketers. An intramural social networking platform called MarkNet, the program is designed to connect marketers from different GE divisions who normally wouldn't speak to each other because they belong to different marketing silos.
From cars to designer clothes to children’s toys, there’s a growing trend towards “transumerism” and “collaborative consumption,” which emphasize sharing, renting and experiencing over owning. Is it just a fad? Or is this a significant trend that will reshape our approach to goods and commerce? I’ve pondered what I call “cloud living” before. Now let’s dig deeper.
The best kind of content you can have is a combination of what you organize -- mostly by building the context and providing something for people to do and a system to capture what they do and play it back for them -- and what people contribute in comments, reactions, posts, etc. Football is a social object. It also generates a good amount of content, on both sides of the conversation, and builds buzz in the process.
At the Center for Future Storytelling, researchers envision how technology can give people more control over TV programs they encounter and stories they follow.
Rachel Botsman is the co-author of "What's Mine is Yours: The Rise of Collaborative Consumption." Here, with a dazzlingly graphic display, she presents a compelling case for 21st Century sharing.
Brands should pay attention to Collaborative Consumption, a movement promoting a cultural shift towards “sharing, bartering, lending, trading, renting, gifting, and swapping.” Brands are already incorporating “peer-to-peer” exchange, from established sites such as eBay and Craigslist, to rising brands such as Zopa, Swaptree, and Zipcar. People are changing what and how they consume goods and services, largely enabled by online and wireless technology.
The World Cup has long been a social experience for fans around the world who cheer their teams on at games, bars and other public gatherings. This year, brands are betting on a different kind of social to connect with fans in ways unimaginable just four years ago, when the last Word Cup was held. Coca-Cola, Nike and Anheuser-Busch are just some of the brands that have made YouTube an important component of their World Cup ad campaigns. Others, like Visa, have added Facebook to their efforts, while still others, including Microsoft, are tapping into the still-emerging field of location-based services.
Sometime in the next few weeks, Facebook will officially log its 500 millionth active citizen. If the website were granted terra firma, it would be the world's third largest country by population, two-thirds bigger than the U.S. More than 1 in 4 people who browse the Internet not only have a Facebook account but have returned to the site within the past 30 days.
If you only use the internet in order to raise awareness, and perhaps to influence perception, then you are missing out on what the web was made for: to enable large networks of people to come together for effective purposes through sharing, cooperating, and organizing collective action.
Facebook says it wants to offer precise controls for sharing on the Internet. To manage your privacy on Facebook, you will need to navigate through 50 settings with more than 170 options. (Infographic)
In a social economy where attention is a precious commodity, the ability to strip a social object down to its essence to capture attention has less to do with compacting character counts and more to do with the art and science of packaging and presenting content so that it is immediately compelling, simple to grasp and appreciate and in turn, share across social graphs. For participants in the socialization of media, an ever-thinning attention span is forcing the rapid evolution of our ability to multitask – albeit at shallow depths. Cognition is thereby stimulated by relevance, simplicity, and in social networks, the objects and content screened and shared by peers.
Your brand has 10,000 Twitter followers and 2,000 fans on Facebook. Does that mean your social media marketing efforts are paying off? Maybe not. As the old adage goes, it’s quality, not quantity, that counts. Recent data that Meteor Solutions collected from across more than 20 brand marketer clients shows that the type of friends, fans and followers a brand amasses on social media sites matters more than the number. On average, approximately 1% of a site’s audience generates 20% of all its traffic through sharing of the brand’s content or site links with others. And these “influencers” drive an even higher share of conversion. These very important Internet users can directly influence 30% or more of overall end actions on brand websites by recommending the brand’s site, products or promotions to friends.
In Part One, we focused on how to make your brand findable and shareable in social media. A white paper by Gigya validates the shift to, and resulting importance of, social search and its dependence on crowd participation. Online businesses must optimize in order to earn referral traffic from social networks. With the advent of social feeds — a live stream of friends’ activity shared on social networks like Facebook and Twitter — consumers can more easily rely on trusted personal relationships to determine what’s worthwhile to read, watch, play and buy online. Honestly, there are too many top 10 lists, and I subscribe to the Spinal Tap school of numeration, so this list will go to “11!” Here are 11 steps for optimizing your brand for sharing and social search.
Content doesn’t make something viral; people are the primary source of powering social objects across the attention nodes that connect the human network. Despite what appears commonsensical, we’re surprised when our brainchild doesn’t attract the views, attention, and circulation we believe it deserves. The reality of social media is this, in the attention economy, information isn’t randomly discovered and broadly disseminated. It is strategically positioned to either appear when someone searches for a related keyword or it’s presented to someone manually and deliberately.
There will be lots of news leaking about Facebook’s product announcements at their upcoming F8 Developer Conference in April. That’s because they’re already starting to test out a lot of the new stuff with third party developers, and once two people know a secret, it isn’t really a secret any more. One of the new features we’ve been hearing about is the extension of Facebook Connect and the Facebook API to allow publishers to add a “Like” button to any piece of content on their site. Sound trivial? It isn’t. This is likely part of Facebook’s Open Graph API project that will incentivize third party sites to interact deeply with Facebook by sharing content and associated metadata.
We're at the beginning of a major shift in how we find, consume and interact with information. If the 2000s was the Google decade, then the 2010s will be the Facebook decade. Already, you can see the writing on the wall - pun intended.
Sociologists have developed elaborate theories of who spreads gossip and news — who tells whom, who matters most in social networks — but they’ve had less success measuring what kind of information travels fastest. Do people prefer to spread good news or bad news? Would we rather scandalize or enlighten? Which stories do social creatures want to share, and why? Now some answers are emerging thanks to a rich new source of data: you, Dear Reader.
Some novel research on the social networking phenomenon has turned up a slightly surprising result: The most influential spreaders of news aren't necessarily those with the greatest number of online friends or followers.
The end of last week was the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) which attracts more than 120,000 people from all parts of the technology industry together to Las Vegas to share their latest innovations and visions for the future. NBC was reporting live from the tradeshow floor, all the big tech publications were there and anyone who works in the technology industry spent the weekend either talking about all the things they were doing, or wishing they were in Vegas to be part of it. The hype this year was definitely around the promise of 3-D TV technology, with ebooks following as a close second. But what about if you are not in the technology industry at all?
Imaging tech juggernaut Kodak is pretty keen on utilizing social media to connect with current and potential customers, boasting a presence on such sites as Facebook, YouTube and Flickr. The fact that it doesn’t own the @Kodak handle on Twitter hasn’t stopped them from being active on the popular micro-sharing service either, where marketers of the company and several employees from its international office locations share all sorts of Kodak related stuff with their followers. Of course, it’s only natural for a company like Kodak to share pictures with the community, and if you look closely you’ll see most of the Kodak accounts on Twitter use TweetPhoto to do so (e.g. @JeffreyHayzlett, CMO of Kodak). That’s not a coincidence.
A U.K. firm is set to launch a camera to capture every moment of a person's life. While you may reel at the privacy implications, I'd wager that the high price of not capturing and sharing every moment of our lives will soon dwarf the cost to our privacy.
As my original career was in biology, when I started working with stories I naturally wanted to consider the natural history of stories, including their life cycles. Now this is a much more difficult thing with stories than with tadpoles or mushrooms, because stories mingle and morph in ways that creatures can't. But here is try at it, based on my experiences and what I've read. I've been pondering this cycle for a long time and playing with it in mind, and this is what I've got to lately. Of course this cycle will be nothing new to anyone who thinks about stories, and it's obviously a greatly simplified metaphor, and I'm merrily making up terms as I go. But this sort of thing can provide a scaffold for discussions about helping people tell and share stories to attain goals.
Content doesn’t spread on the web because of its inherent qualities. We choose to share content because of its value within a network.
It has never been easier to express yourself in public. Whatever you might want to say, the online tools to let you say it to a (theoretically) worldwide audience are innumerable. Say it long, say it short, say what you want, when you want and how often you want. As the title of a forthcoming book about blog culture puts it: “Say Everything.” You have the technology. The only thing the technology cannot do is solve this problem: What if you don’t really have anything to express?
I believed in the power of the World Wide Web way back in 1991. Why?
These days, we're all public figures. We're sharing our friends on Facebook, our photos on Flickr, our music on Last.fm, and our goofy links insightful observations on Twitter. So when Fast Company set out to capture the personalities of our 100 Most Creative People in Business, we started--where else?--by looking for online profiles. But when it comes to sharing themselves--not just their businesses, but their business--our creative class clams up.
Marketers hope social networkers will watch--and share--Internet ads.
The kids born after 1980 are often thought of as Digital Natives but age doesn’t always matter as the generation is defined on: access to digital technologies, age, and have the skills to use the skills.
In the past, we've done Newbie's Guides for certain services, but we wanted to switch things up and really dig into a product's advanced features. Video-sharing site YouTube is the perfect service to start with because it's massively popular and incredibly simple to use, but also has a few powerful features that are tucked away. This guide is to help you learn how to use some of these advanced features and to serve as a simple reference page.
For marketers and publishers of the social Web, design matters. Creative matters. Ideas matter. It is true that properly utilized data can drive better decision making, but it is also true that all the data in the world doesn't create innovation without interpretation, and data doesn't always lead to great design (especially when the data is about the wrong thing -- clicks, anyone?).
You should listen to the people who tell the most people about you. Listen to the people who thrive on sharing your good works with others. If you delight these people, you grow.
In the SXSW 2009 session "How to Protect Your Brand Without Being a Jerk," panelists cautioned brands to police trademark violation while still protecting PR by practicing flexibility and communication when it comes to new media law.
Facebook has a chief privacy officer, but I doubt that the position will exist 10 years from now. That’s not because Facebook is hell-bent on stripping away privacy protections, but because the popularity of Facebook and other social networking sites has promoted the sharing of all things personal, dissolving the line that separates the private from the public.
"Giving is the new taking, and sharing is the new giving." That's the key assertion in this month's trend briefing, which describes the characteristics of Generation G (for generosity) and offers eight ways for brands to join: from Tryvertising to Brand Butlers to Random Acts of Kindness (RAK).”
The Adidas-branded video service, slated to roll out starting this week, lives at its own Internet hub. But in a nod to the vogue for sharing online content, it is designed to spread Adidas video across the Web.
At some point the anonymity of the internet transformed into a social networking clearinghouse of daily minutiae and most of us willingly opted in, choosing the ease and comfort of virtual intimacy over a lonely existence of real world disconnectedness. And these communities blossomed, starting with close friends and family then expanding to include co-workers and long lost childhood chums, finally welcoming obscure acquaintances and total strangers with whom we’ve never had a face to face conversation. We decided that to know and be known was a good thing, but never really thought it through.