12 Most Timely Predictions for 2012 from 12 Thought Leaders
As we wrap up 2011, 12 Most (Peg Fitzpatrick and Margie Clayman specifically) wanted to ask a few of the neighborhood thought leaders, some who have been featured 12 Most writers, what they would predict for business trends for 2012. Thank you to each of them for their time and sharing their thoughts with the 12 Most readers.
We hope you find their predictions as interesting as we did!
“I predict that Google Plus will surpass Twitter in the number of users in 2012.”
-Guy Kawasaki, CEO of Alltop & Author Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds and Actions
“Social media: Facebook will launch its own mobile application platform. Social and mobile will continue to converge. Facebook will top 1 billion users and have a successful IPO. More and more businesses will dedicate resources to social media, and lots more success stories will emerge.”
-Dave Kerpen, CEO of Likeable Media, Author Likeable Social Media: How to Delight Your Customers, Create an Irresistable Brand, and Be Generally Amazing on Facebook.
“2012 is the year when social fundraising moves from experimental to a validated use of social media.”
Geoff Livingston is an author and consultant. He recently published The Fifth Estate and is currently co-authoring a book with Gini Dietrich
In 2012, Facebook will see a significant increase in social commerce, a.k.a. “F-commerce” – where business page owners have added a tab on their fan page for fans and visitors to purchase products and services without leaving Facebook. Apps to service this area include Ecwid, Payvment, TabJuice, and ShopTab.
-Mari Smith, Facebook Marketing Expert, Coauthor Facebook Marketing: An Hour A Day
From Gini’s annual trends prediction post over at SpinSucks.com: Social TV Convergence. I’m not a television watcher, but I’m seeing something interesting happening with apps, such as Get Glue. You can “check in” to a TV program and then have conversations with people around the world who are watching the same thing. It allows you to review the shows, talk about what’s happening, and listen to what others are saying. It works for movies and music, too! Plus, if the rumors are true and Steve Jobs’s last project was iTV, this will become HUGE next year.
-Gini Dietrich, Founder & CEO Arment Dietrich, Coauthor Marketing in the Round
“The other day my teenage daughter called me on my mobile phone to report that she had just successfully separated the egg white from its yolk. She was home after school baking holiday cookies, and—unfamiliar with the egg procedure—she had gone to YouTube and watched a step-by-step video there. So rather than calling me to ask me to explain it to her, or maybe waiting until I got home so I could demonstrate, she handled it herself.
I admired that: How awesome is that kind of self-sufficiency? And that’s what technology enables. We can separate our own eggs or fix our own sprinkler systems or book our own travel or handle whatever by finding the right resource online.
That sort of self-sufficiency is, I think, part of this larger notion of “Shadow Work,” (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/30/opinion/sunday/our-unpaid-extra-shadow-work.html?pagewanted=all), which refers to the extra “self-service” work we all assume in our modern world and the subtle way we’ve taken on more and more of it. Again, technology enables much of it, and the fact that we are all pumping our own gas, bagging our own groceries, checking out our own library books and so on are examples of the almost imperceptible ways our lives demand more out of us.
New waves of technology continue to change how everything is done in work, family—our lives. As someone who makes a living from championing the adoption of those new waves (and more than that—as someone who really digs it!), I think that’s mostly an incredible thing. But, at the same time, the evolution of technology is subtly, but often in radical ways, changing our behavior and culture.
So what’s the larger trend here? I guess it’s that social tools are changing us in unexpected ways. Even as they’re connecting us to each other, they are also making us independent of each other—and instead dependent on those tools. And so, even as technology empowers us, it enslaves us.”
Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer at Marketing Profs, Coauthor Content Rules
By now most businesses are pretty socially aware. Even if some of them are not using social media to its fullest potential, they know it’s something they should understand because sooner or later they will be using it. In 2012, I think we’ll see more businesses getting smarter about metrics; instead of getting carried away by how many fans/followers, etc., they have, they’re going to look at how they can effectively use social media to drive efficiency, customer loyalty and revenue. The smart ones are already
doing this, but I think we’ll see much more of it and thus, I hope, get a much wider pool of good case studies to draw from.
Shonali Burke, ABC (accredited business communicator) and one of TopRank’s 25 Women That Rock Social Media
“As staid and boring as it is, my business trend to watch in 2012 is going to be that businesses are going to finally start turning the corner on social media strategy and start using social for strategic reasons other than, “Because we have to,” or just to keep up with the competition. We started to see it in the second half of 2011 and more and more are getting up to speed enough to stop playing and start driving business through social channels.”
-Jason Falls, Founder Social Media Explorer, Coauthor No Bull Shit Social Media
“Twitter’s relaunched interface will make it easier for the mainstream to get value out of Twitter, and their brand pages will help companies form a more coherent Twitter presence. So I expect that in 2012 more of the businesses that are trying Twitter will get the hang of providing genuinely valuable content that is “all about” their readers. This will help them employ Twitter to generate real results and happy customers, and we’ll move beyond short sighted attempts to grow a larger follower base for it’s own sake. Increased in-store traffic, a stronger sense of community, and more leverage in social recommendations are just a few examples of the kinds of measurable, tactical results that will result when companies start getting it right.”
- Laura Fitton, inbound Marketing Evangelist, HubSpot, Coauthor Twitter for Dummies.
“Intense Focus on Existing Customers: As many businesses have been struggling for the past few years to break through the noise to attract new customers, I predict that many businesses will adopt a renewed laser-like focus on their existing customers in 2012. Marketing time and dollars will begin to move away from discounts and daily deals to more customer loyalty and engagement efforts with business’s existing customer bases.”
Carol Roth, Business Strategist, Author The Entrepreneur Equation
Danny referred us to this study from emarketer.com noting that Social Media metrics will take center stage in 2012. Pretty interesting stuff!
Danny also notes that collaborative consumption will likely become big in 2012. “If I have a corn mill that is sitting unused, and Farmer George needs to buy another corn mill due to bumper crop, I’ll let him lease mine and I get share of sales. Saves him having to buy new.”
- Danny Brown, Director of Retention & Social Media, Jungoo, Award Winning Blogger
Many have been online for two decades, yet full-scale adoption has grown slowly. Online is here and in 2012, mobile will explode. With widespread adaption, the theory I brought forth when writing The Ultimate Online Customer Service Guide has come to fruition. Brands are flocking to short messaging through Twitter to satisfy customer issues in record time. In 2012, long waits on the phone will become a thing of the past as more companies (small and large) get smart and learn to monitor–>answer–>react to their customer’s needs and build loyalty.
Marsha Collier is a prolific author who has published 39 books; eBay & Online Customer Service http://bit.ly/custsrv, Inspiring speaker #techRadio host, Founder #CustServ chat
What predictions are YOU brave enough to make for 2012?