2014 Predictions from your Friendly Neighbourhood Blog Bloke

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I was reading an article titled “5 Predictions for Social Media in 2014” by Inc.  I don’t normally write new year predictions because the contrarian in me doesn’t like to follow the crowd.  (I know, I’m a troublemaker.)  But this article caught my eye and I couldn’t resist.  I have quoted the author below, followed by my ever-so-insightful comments. ;)

So let the games begin. This is what the author had to say:

Pay to play:

Facebook has changed its news feed algorithm in a way that hurts organic reach. Twitter is a public company that must drive revenues. Google+ has introduced ads. LinkedIn has promoted updates. Getting consumers’ attention in social media is becoming increasingly difficult. In 2014, we will see increased pressures on companies of all sizes to pay to sponsor their posts to get more visibility. This will be hardest on small businesses, which obviously have fewer resources for marketing than big brands. It means you’ll have to be prepared to not only create great content for social media, but also perhaps pay the social networks to promote that content.

Pay to Play?

My 2014 prediction is .. as ads become more intrusive, everyday people and small business get lost in the shuffle, and social networks abuse our trust/privacy .. they are cutting their own throat in the long run as users will look for somewhere else to play.

It would be arrogant for the top social media networks to think they can have it all their way and can’t be toppled.  Still don’t believe me?  Then read this “Teens are Leaving Facebook and Where they are Going”.

Erasable media

Everybody wants to buy Snapchat, and eventually, more and more grownups will begin to actually use it. With sharing consistently increasing, as Mark Zuckerberg correctly predicted, and privacy an increased concern, as he didn’t correctly predict, 2014 will see a rise in disappearing, erasable media. In addition to Snapchat, you’ll see existing social networks begin to offer media that is even shorter lived than the content currently in our feeds. This means that you’ll have to prepared to have the results of your hard work in content marketing literally vanish. Source.

Erasable media?  I think that is prophetic and here’s why.

First of all I looked at Snapchat but wasn’t convinced of its servers’ security and whether the media was in fact erased.  I make it a policy to not trust 3rd party services on the cloud with my sensitive data.  Do you think I’m being paranoid?  Then please read this.

Nevertheless this conundrum is a double edged sword.  What if you want your digital media to last forever like I do?

(As well as should business. Think long tail for SEO.)

As time goes by people will wake up to the fact that a blog is the only serious medium that will enable our hard work to last forever.

Social Media can be fun but it is also transient.  Faddish.  Here today and gone tomorrow.  If you really want to leave your mark online only a blog can give you that.

After all, isn’t that what we really want?  Think about it.

Blogs are online real estate.  Something that we own.  When Facebook and the others aren’t cool anymore your hard work will be gone forever.  Poof. 

Or as Jeffrey Zeldman said:

Blogging may have been a fad, a semi-comic emblem of a time, like CB Radio and disco dancing, but independent writing and publishing is not. Sharing ideas and passions on the only free medium the world has known is not a fad or joke. We were struggling, whether we knew it or not, to found a more fluid society. A place where everyone, not just appointed apologists for the status quo, could be heard. That dream need not die. It matters more now than ever. Yes, recycling other people’s recycling of other people’s recycling of cat gifs is fun and easy on Tumblr. Yes, rubbing out a good bon mot on Twitter can satisfy one’s ego and rekindle a wistful remembrance of meaning. Yes, these things are still fine to do. But they are not all we can do on this web. This is our web. Let us not surrender it so easily to new corporate masters. Keep blogging in the free world.

There is so much more that blogs can do.  So I’m predicting for 2014 a resurgence of blogging.   More of us will return back to our blog that we abandoned, spend more time on our blog than social media (me included) and/or start up a new one.

And so my friends … Blog On!