About the Author: Jason Small is a digital marketer with 10+ years of digital experience working with 20+ brands via various agency roles. Small's expertise includes broad digital strategy, social media strategy, SEO, website design and development and he has led teams to produce results for brands online such as Peoples Choice Awards, ChapStick, Centrum, Dial, Honeywell, Renuzit, Castrol, Sears, Hertz, CoverGirl, John Deere, Advil, ThermaCare and more. As Director of Strategic Partnerships and Business Development for a fifty-person startup, Small led initiatives uniting value propositions and technology across 10+ companies while generating press in trades like TechCrunch and the Wall Street Journal.
Trending 2009, location-based social media APIs have been storming the social-sphere. If you look closely at how search engines have trended towards localization, it makes sense. Over the years, technology starts at a macro level and then evolves to service users on a more personal level. Now, social media is set to rapidly evolve from a macro level to a location-based micro-level. To be more specific; instead of a general ‘virtual’ connection with your friends and family – whereby you may not know exactly where they are when you are messaging/posting one another – in 2010 more users will start to use geo-location to show exactly where they are when they interact with social media.
With location-based social media services like Foursquare, Brightkite, and even the iPhone app Loopt – social media will continue to evolve from “What are you doing?” to “What are you doing and where are you doing it?”
As advertisers seek a stronger measurement for social media in the form of ROI, which most are still trying to develop some type of formula for, mobile location-based ad tools are also gaining momentum at an exponential pace. In other words, users and advertisers are now catching up to the trend that has been mildly active for the past 18-24+ months and although ROI techniques are far from perfect, advertisers know that narrowing their demographic by location will increase ROI by fine tuning their target markets.
With Twitter releasing an ‘army of developers’ on their realtime data (previously only accessible by Google and Bing) by opening up their API to 50,000+ developers big and small – 2010 will see Twitter compete to lead the charge in location-based social media applications. To support this step, Twitter will leverage GeoAPI developer Mixer Labs, which they have acquired, to work on location data and help developers.
From an advertiser standpoint, it will evolve into creative ways to activate promotions using these applications. Consider, for instance, the power of a major brand like Coca-Cola and perhaps a challenge like organizing an image of a large Coke bottle by coordinating social media fans and their locations. A little complex, perhaps, but that’s what apps are for – making the complex easier.
Social Media and the Big W
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