Reviewing Social Media Marketing Trends for 2011

First I thank you all for the great year. We have had great business results and our blog reached 82 thousand visitors. I hope you have enjoyed this as much as we have. Happy holidays to everybody!

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Every year we have made predictions about what’s going to happen over the next 12 months in social media marketing. But it’s easy to just list ideas out of thin air. So, now we are looking back to our predictions and see if we got it right or not. I’m going to assign points to the each prediction and calculate the percentage.

1. Audience will have control. Yes. People will talk about you and the only way you kan manage that is by talking back on equal terms. Respond quickly, be open, apologize.

2. Social media monitoring gets even more important (yes). You need to know what’s going on to respond and enagage in conversations or manage a crisis. Social media will not go away.

3. Engaging customers will be a challenge (yes). Social media fatique, enter a contest and win an iPad. There’s a lot of noise and people are being overwhelmed. Engaging the right people will be a focus for a long time to come.

4. Community management is important to engage people (yes). As with number 3 this is a trend that is going to be integrated into the processes of successful brands.

5. 2011 will be the year when most social media and personal communications will be in the mobile devices (moving). More than a third but less than half of the Facebook users are connecting through mobile. It’s not exactly a miss but change didn’t happen as fast as we expected. See out sociam ledia marketing trends for 2012 where we predict the same thing. In 2012 it’s going to happen.

6. One social network to rule them all. Resistance is futile (yes). There’s no serious comeptiton to Facebook as network efect works in favor of the biggest player. Google may have a chance but it will take a lot of time to even get close to Facebook.

7. Integrating websites with social technology will make them more appealing to users (yes). Washington Post Social Reader is basically on the Facebook. A lot of big site let you login with Facebook or Twitter. Sharing buttons everywhere and Facebook introducing frictionless social gestures. Yep, we got this one!

8. Social commerce (no). Not so much. We are moving in this direction but there’s no killer application yet that makes social buying really appealing to people.

9. Location! Location! Location (moving)! Location is becoming increasingly important but it is more like a feature or context not a standalone application. As location and mobile become increasingly important the use of location in marketing will continue to grow.

10. Measuring results (yes)! The more money goes into social media marketing the more important it is to show the results. Marketers are testing about models and tools. They drop ineffective options and move towards measuring real business value.

11. Social media will be integrated to overall marketing activities (moving). So, so. As we predicted for 2012, social media marketing will disappear. Well, it didn’t do that in 2011. Brands are still playing around with new tools and the seamless integration into the marketing mix has not happened yet. It will.

12. Brand is customer experience, service, product, people, stories, community (no). I really believe that this is the way to go but change happens slowly and it’ll take a few years before we see truly social brands in large scale. In this marketing, all communications, and customers will merge into seamless ecosystem. But I agree that many brands may not see how this is going to happen.

13. Marketing will hit mobiles big time (moving). 2011 is the year of the mobile explosion. You will need a mobile website and it would be wise to think about how to influence people on the go. But businesses are still figuring this out.

14. Personal messaging will move to social networks (moving). But some big organizations are already moving away from email. The importance of standalone email, IM and other services will decline.

15. Campaigns will get more dynamic, spanning from offline to actionable social channels (no). Nope! This is in the same group as marketing integration and seamless social brand experience. I would say it will be a result of these other trends. So it will some time to materialize.

16. The home page for internet users will be a social network. Yes! The biggest junk of time online goes to social networking(

17. Facebook will get close to 800 million users (yes). It did(!

14 of our social media marketing predictions are really happening and 9 were spot on. Three that we missed are also happening but really slowly. So, we scored a really impressive 82% accuracy rate. Yay!

Read our sociale media marketing predictions for 2012.

Image credit Katie Gregory

Priit Kallas

Priit is the founder and CEO of DreamGrow Digital, an internet marketing and social media company. With his 20+ years internet marketing experience he is Helping companies to understand and use the digital marketing to reach their target audiences. He has spoken at hundreds of seminars and conferences on different aspects of internet marketing. Priit is also the organizer of Digital Elite Camp, a leading traffic and conversion event.

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