All posts in “trends”

The Shared Experience: Live TV and Social Media


Ruth is the Director of Business Development at Social Media Group. You can follow her @rutbas.

Our family recently moved into a new house. My husband was lobbying hard to “lose the cable”. It would have been cheaper, but I resisted. You never know what’s going to happen I said. I may have felt differently if we had a fancy new TV set… but I’m still working with the TV we got when we first set up house, way back in the 90’s, so I held firm. I just suspected that there would be times when only live TV would do.

These last few weeks have been such a time.

We have all have snuggled around the TV to discuss the merits of Presidential candidates, marvel at how vulnerable “life as we know it” is with the onslaught of Sandy, and generally counted on the cast of characters across all the networks to guide us through the build up to election night. I still love that CNN map. And did you see Letterman do his show on the night of Sandy? I found it hilarious, and poignant all at once. OK, granted, I saw it on YouTube after the fact (Check it out)… but I love that Letterman went live with the show.

And nothing beats seeing those election results come in live. Loved it when Peter Mansbridge held up cue cards because the “number machine” was acting up, and was presenting everything backwards…

Granted, at any one time, all of my family members supplement live television viewing with various devices. It was very entertaining to watch the last set of Presidential debates while following Twitter. I’d never done that before, and I get the appeal. When Sandy hit I could track power outages via the Toronto Hydro Web site on my phone, and feel very on top of things. But the main event for us was still on that little box in the living room.

While we continue to have our shared experience with respect to media, around the television screen, families like ours are supplementing the experience with those various tweets, posts and conversations that clearly expand the “shared experience” outside of the household. My husband got thousands of views for one of his election posts one night. Sometimes, it’s just weird. It’s like we’re having this shared experience, and publishing it to the world at the same time. Or something like that. I hardly know what to call the emerging model- but I suspect it’s the new normal.

Check out the info-graphic below,  “TV Goes Social: The Rise of the Second Screen”  to see how radically our TV viewing habits are changing…  and integrating into the social media experience, whether watching the live version or canned version.

What has the experience in your household been in the last few weeks with regards to live TV viewing and social media?


Top 9 Social Media Predictions and Trends for 2012

As 2011 winds down and we prepare to kick off 2012, many digital soothsayers have peered into their crystal balls to predict the coming year in social media. We’ve searched far and wide to find what they have to say.

I used to curate and organize the findings.

Get the Scoop

Of the Scooped predictions and trends, here are my top 9 picks.

1. Content Marketing: Brands = Publishers.
2012 will see many businesses become content marketers, if they’re not already. They will become publishers and distributors of their own original content.

According to Social Media Explorer, “2012 is the year content marketing hits the social media trends list and the mainstream, because content marketing is now a concept that executives can finally sink their teeth into”.

2. Convergence: It’s All Coming Together.
Convergence, in the technological sense, is the merging of different technological systems to merge toward performing similar tasks. In the year to come, social media will increasingly converge with everyday life, marketing, technology and data.

As David Armano points out in his post on the Harvard Business Review, “trans-media” experiences, such as Coke’s and Domino’s, will increasingly be used in “bringing together real opinions from real people pulled from a digital source and displayed in the real world”.

3. Measurement and ROI: How Are We Really Performing
Companies will need to become better at measuring social media activities to achieve more integrated marketing campaigns in 2012, according to a recent report on eMarketer.

Metrics will go beyond counting impressions, subscribers and followers to new ways of measuring prospect conversion and revenue generation.

The ability to effectively measure social media ROI will aslo become essential for many companies in the coming year. In Adam Metz’ report on, he says we can expect to see more social platforms and social media management systems that will offer the ability to assess and maximize ROI.

4. Mobile: Social Media On The Go
As Mart Prööm reports on DreamGrow, social media will be used more and more on mobile devices in 2012. In turn, mobile apps will become more social. This surge in mobile will require brands to ensure their content is mobile and tablet friendly.

5. Social Corporate Budgets: More Dollars Makes Sense
A recent study by StrongMail projects that corporate social media budgets will grow in 2012. To date, most companies have been focused on experimentation and pilot projects in social media. Expect to see much larger portions of corporate budgets devoted to social media in the coming year.

6. Gamification: Playing To Win
Social gaming will begin to influence people’s behavior in the real world in the coming year.

“Game-like qualities are emerging within a number of social apps in your browser or mobile device. From levels, to leaderboards, to badges or points, rewards for participation abound. It’s likely that the trend will have to evolve given how [much] competition for our time and attention this gaming creates,” according to Armano in his post on Harvard Business Review.

7. Integration: Becoming Closely Knit
Companies will need to ramp up their efforts to integrate social media to into their corporate websites and email, especially where transactions occur. Coordinating messages and ensuring consistency across all social channels will be essential to a greater level of success in 2012.

In Angela Hausman’s post on Business 2 Community,  she states, “firms must move beyond simply adding share buttons on their email newsletters and print ads.  They need to fully integrate efforts across platforms, media, and functional groups”.

8. Influence: Who’s Who in Social Media
In 2012, brands will place greater emphasis on identifying who truly has influence within their markets, according to Social Media Explorer. The race among influence measurement platforms, such as Klout, Kred or PeerIndex, will continue as they strive to develop a system that will reward the top influencers in a given niche market.

9. Content Curation: Greater Than the Sum of All Parts
As businesses become publishers, it will make sense for them to curate the new and existing content related to their brands and their markets. Exclusively creating new content is demanding and daunting for many companies. Resorting to automation and aggregation results in a less than ideal user experience. Content curation can provide the best of both content creation and automation.

“Competitive advantage goes to companies who quickly figure out how to enable effective aggregation curation. Look for rapid innovation in this field’, as Beverly Macy puts it in her report on Huffington Post.

Take the Scoop that I created as an example: it exposed me to content that I might not otherwise have found and it gave me tools to organize and add value for end users.

Did I leave anything out? What do you think will be the top trends for social media in 2012?