Social media is no longer social
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and many others all started out as communications and online relationship building platforms without ads.
Now all social media have become advertising channels for highly targeted ads based on the user intelligence as they need to make money for their investors.
Just like soap opera’s they have become carriers of advertising under pressure of the investors.
In both cases the content draws in the crowd and the ads are carefully targeted.
However the more focus on advertising the less evident it becomes for users to communicate and build relationships as the platforms have become:
- Increasingly more complex in functions and features.
- Cluttered by ads
- Slower in loading the pages due to all of the above
The advertisements are becoming distractions from the real purpose of the people using it and the simple and clean layout is gone.
Social media is no longer social as it is just has become another advertising channel like soap operas.
Google Plus has started out without advertising while still under invitation only but it won’t take long before ads will appear once the gates are open for everybody.
Social media will go like portals
The question now becomes if it is still interesting for a company to:
- Advertise on social media
- Invest time and effort in social media
At the end of the nineties portals were all the hype. They were competing with each other by adding more and more functions and features in order to capture more market share. Their user interface became cluttered and load times increased.
At the same time the Google search engine became popular as it presented a clean user interface without any clutter. Then the decay of portals was evident.
Now the decay of social media is near as they:
- Are competing heavily on functions and features: Facebook vs Google plus / Twitter vs Tumblr
- Are more and more populated by bots
- Have become advertising channels just like soap operas
Moreover the content in social media is not getting any better as more and more companies post their editorials on social media and try to promote their products and services: companies take over from people on platforms intended for people.
Next after social media
If a new communications easy and convenient channel for the public emerges then social media will decrease in importance just like it happened portals.
The new communications or relationship building platform needs to be:
- Accessible easily and convenient in use for all without complex user interface like Facebook
- Bot free – unlike Twitter that has more bots than humans tweeting and re-tweeting
- Capturing the attention and be interest generating
Maybe the new communications channel it is already available – like ChatRoulette ?
Do you still use social media for business or product promotion?