Eight trends for the future: Social hygiene

This post is part of an on-again, off-again series of posts about eight trends that I think are shaping things. In this one I wanted to deal with a concept that I call social hygiene.

Social as a channel has become engrained into our lives just like the mobile phone, the web and the telephone directory before it. From a marketers perspective this means that social media channels go from fearful curio to part of the bread-and-butter work done day-in, day-out by agencies and clients alike.

I remember back in 2006 saying that having a social strategy would be as ridiculous as having a phone or email strategy. Both are valuable marketing channels yet strategy as a discipline is unchanged since the works of Sun Tzu. It looks like this viewpoint may finally be starting to break through

social hygiene
Here is a chart from Google Trends, I picked three terms to compare: social media marketing, social business and digital marketing. What’s interesting is that social business as a term seems to be plateauing and social media marketing seems to be slightly less searched for than in the past. Meanwhile digital marketing carries on with a steady progression which seems to have started growing in 2007, around the same time that interest in social media marketing took off. This suggests to me that social is now a hygiene factor, just when the power is out and we are suddenly aware of electricity, or we don’t think about the phone unless we can’t get a signal or a dial tone.

More information
Eight trends for the future
Eight trends for the future: digital interruption
Eight trends: Immersive as well as interactive experiences

One Response to Eight trends for the future: Social hygiene

  1. I don’t know if we could use Google Trends to predict the future. Lot of companies are talking about social media, however many of them are just releasing promotion or reusing old material. Most companies don’t produce original material, let alone having a strategy and numbers show that people are leaving giant social network like Facebook and join smaller niche network. I believe in the future the social media landscape will become so fragmented it won’t worth the time to have people dedicating effort on it.