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Social Media Saturation Yes, Maturation No.

baby steps

Not another post about social media…Yes and no, but indulge me.

Yesterday Jason Breed of Neighborhood America and I were talking about elevating our game with hashtagsocialmedia in the same fashion that #Journchat tried to do Monday night on Twitter. Journchat, if you were not aware, hosted some live sessions in a number of cities that coincided with their regularly scheduled Monday night session. It worked to a certain a degree if not for the sake of trying. They get props for trying to raise their game.

Meanwhile, I had been expressing to Jason that I would like to see that eventually happen with Hashtag Social Media as well-namely some type of larger more event like type of setting for #socialmedia; and it was then that Jason brought up a seriously major point.

“What could we say or do that people have not already heard countless  times?”

Which led me to pause, reflect and nod my head in agreement. I think he’s right.  Has social media or the writing and talking about social media reached a level of saturation? In my opinion yes. But with a caveat. Yes, for those of us on the front lines and in the bubble. What more can we read and or write about that has not already been said? What power list have we not seen? What 10 sure fire ways to do something in social media have we not bookmarked, read or saved a half dozen times? How many blog posts about social media measurement have resonated with you? Whose Venn diagram have you saved and shared with your colleagues? How many slideshares about social media have you embedded?

Saturation yes. Maturation no.

After Jason and I agreed that though much has been said and repeated about social media, we both then agreed that there is still much, much more to learn, share, and expound upon. If we were to look at the Gartner Hype Cycle for example or even just your traditional bell curve, and we were to determine where social media, holistically speaking, was located  on the curve, we would both say we had not even come close to critical mass.

Why?

Before you can run you have to walk. before you can walk you have to crawl. The history of social media is but a mere blip on the radar that is social computing, networks and clouds. Its a starting point that we have to get beyond. Let’s quit spinning our wheels about what it is and get to, “What it can do and how”.

We can all continue to write about things that we have all read countless times in different forms, and then we can slap each other’s backs and share it amongst ourselves. or we can step beyond that monotone and truly start to think about social media on business levels and use levels and not adoption levels. Am I wrong or am I just too close to the subject?

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7 Responses to “Social Media Saturation Yes, Maturation No.”


  1. 1 Michael E. Rubin August 19, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Marc,

    To answer your question, I think you may be too close to it. *grin* I have had the same issue come up for myself, and every time I do a self-examination as you’re doing, I keep coming back to the idea that I just might be a tad too close to it because I live, breathe, and do this for a living.

    In the book “The Influentials”, the authors talk about the idea of “continuous provement” (http://bit.ly/continuousprovement) that I really like. It’s the idea that we must continue to educate and improve what we’re doing in social media. I think that’s a healthy thing.

    You may also be encouraged by some data about social media adoption that I found and posted about here (http://bit.ly/Y94gF). Disclaimer: the URL posts back to a post I wrote on my company blog.

    Cheers!
    Michael

  2. 2 marc meyer August 20, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    Michael, I know i am. It happens a lot. Loved your blog post by the way.

  3. 3 Sarah Edwards August 21, 2009 at 7:42 am

    Really enjoyed reading this post, as another person who lives and breathes this topic, constantly testing how to better use certain networks and trying to pre-empt the next best thing, it’s great to see someone take a step back and analyse how we need to change our approaches.

  4. 4 Ken Burbary August 28, 2009 at 4:32 pm

    Marc – This topic is near and dear to me too. I’ve had several conversations about how us practitioners live too much of daily life “inside the fish bowl” and lose valuable perspective on how the mainstream folks/media view social media. The impact that social is having on Digital is much less understood by that group and we would be wise to help them with baby steps instead of speaking a foreign tongue.

  5. 5 Lawrence November 23, 2009 at 5:31 am

    You’re right, and you’re just close enough to the subject. Sounds to me like you want to push the envelope. Go for it!

    The funny thing is, that’s the same as Ken’s suggestion to “help them with baby steps instead of speaking a foreign tongue.” If we want to move past social media and into the social cloud, we have to help people figure out why all this really matters, in simple human terms.


  1. 1 DR. WHAW? – August 20, 2009 « One true sentence. Trackback on August 23, 2009 at 7:16 pm
  2. 2 DR. WHAW? – August 26, 2009 « One true sentence. Trackback on August 27, 2009 at 9:55 pm
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Marc Meyer is a Digital and Social Media Strategist at DRMG. This is my personal blog where I share observations, thoughts and opinions that are all my own.

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