You all know that I haven't produced a Tiny Letter in quite some time. I went on what was supposed to be a short hiatus and it turned into weeks/months. I completely understand if you want a refund. I would. I'd ask for one myself.

But I'm going to do my darnedest to get you back on my side 🙂

This first Tiny Letter of the New Year (2012 edition) is an introduction into what I have in store for this little newsletter for the upcoming months. I've fully taken on the idea that I should be planning–not for the entire 12 months–but for the next 90 days.

It's easier to manage, easier to come up with real SMART goals, and it's easier to correct when things go awry. And they always do, right?

So I'm going to throw out some topics that I think will be important–if not to do something about but to learn what to expect and not get caught with our collective pants down.

Social media will become even more important and take an even bigger chunk of your daily life and business budget. Now that the search engines, led by Google, have embraced social media and your connections to make personalized search pretty darned relevant, it's high time to start paying attention.

And please don't do what many do–set up a Facebook page or twitter profile and never make any posts. That's such a waste. Let's endeavor in this first quarter of the year to get really good at ONE social media site (choose Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or YouTube). Specialize in it. Read a lot. Do a lot.

Get it DIALED IN!

Then, in the 2nd quarter, go whole hog on another. By the end of the year, you should be very competent in the 4 biggest social networks there are (right now).

Speaking of right now, don't be surprised if another social media network starts taking “eyeball share” from Facebook and Twitter. It could be Google Plus (another one to keep an eye on, for sure) or somebody else completely different. Don't forget that before Facebook, My Space was the king of social networks and now, just a couple years later, it is totally insignificant.

I do think that perhaps there may be 2 big things in social media this year: 1) Consolidation and 2) Upcoming social networks will be really “niched down”. Meaning, there may come into prominence relatively little social networks that concentrate on rock music or basketball or collecting cars. I think things may get very granular.

And at the same time, the bigger networks may see some shrinking, not necessarily in terms of users, but in terms of number of big players in the market. Think what could happen if Google bought Twitter. Ponder a transaction like that for a moment.

Don't despair, though–if this sort of consolidation occurs, all your work probably won't be for naught–even if it is one of your networks that gets gobbled up. I have confidence that the folks doing the consolidating will do their level-best to keep current customers; keeping customers will require that they integrate any merging of disparate systems in a very seamless manner. Otherwise, people will really jump ship–in droves.

No social network can afford to lose members. None of them.

Obviously, I think social media should take a little more of your effort this year. It's only going to get bigger.

Next up is mobile. I'll talk more about it in the next Tiny Letter. Suffice it to say that I think mobile may even be bigger than social media, especially for “brick and mortar” businesses.

Because of the above two emerging trends (social media and mobile), I think that search engine optimization (SEO) will take on even greater importance in marketing your business' goods and/or services. Many would lead you to believe that SEO will take a backseat.

And it could.

But I don't think it will. There are a lot of smart people involved with SEO (and it's not all–or even a little, really–scams)…they're too smart to NOT figure out how to optimize webpages for on- and off-page SEO.

SEO will be HUGE in 2012 as the SEs give more attention to social media and mobile.

Of course, video will grow, too. Right now, video seems to be like the Old West, where things are wild, unpredictable, and exciting. Once in a while, you run into people who have it “all figured out.” Hopefully, I can turn you on to some of those people 🙂

Next up, we'll talk about the second emerging trend in 2012: Mobile and its implications. Until next time…

Thanks for sticking with me!!!

Bill


Tags

2012 8212 the year ahead, 2012 predictions, 2012 tech predictions, 2012 The Year Ahead, 2012 web predictions, real smart goals, search engine optimization, social networks, Tiny Letter


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