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Entries in Social (13)


Social Media: What Motivates People to Use Them?

I signed up for Jelly right when its beta opened but almost immediately deleted my account and the app -- but that's another story. 

Here in TechCrunch is a prescient piece about what motivates people to embrace social media and social services. Nearly any social media/service requires people to invest at least time and attention; why do some socials stick, and some fade away? 

You’d Be Surprised By What Really Motivates Users

Posted Feb 7, 2014 by Nir Eyal (@nireyal)

Editor’s note: This article is adapted from Hooked: A Guide to Building Habit-Forming Products, a new book by Nir Eyal and Ryan Hoover.

Earlier this month, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone unveiled his mysterious startup Jelly. The question-and-answer app was met with a mix of criticism and head scratching. Tech-watchers asked if the world really needed another Q&A service. Skeptics questioned how it would compete with existing solutions and pointed to the rocky history of previous products like Mahalo Answers, Formspring, and Aardvark.


In an interview, Biz articulated his goal to, “make the world a more empathetic place.” Sounds great but one wonders if Biz is being overly optimistic. Aren’t we all busy enough? Control for our attention is in a constant tug-of-war as we struggle to keep-up with all the demands for our time. Can Jelly realistically help people help one another? For that matter, how does any technology stand a chance of motivating users to do things outside their normal routines?

We hope a few insights gleaned from user psychology may help the Jelly makers improve their jam and provide some tips for anyone building an online community.

See the article for full treatment of the motivators and examples thereof -- but the motivators, in summary are, 

  1. Reward system -- recognition from peers or the community may be a more effective incentive than money or prizes 
  2. Frequent engagement -- services that people use daily, and that deliver incentives (rewards) frequently, succeed 
  3. (Related to #1,) the community with which people would enage in the social media/service, is a "community of people whose opinions we care about" 



Social Media Skills for Leadership

McKinsey, the consultancy, publishes a piece in its McKinsey Quarterly (a publication I recommend; see here to subscribe) about the perspectives leaders should have vis-a-vis social media. 

My own perspective regarding "organizational media literacy" -- to use McKinsey's construct -- is subsumed to my philosophy regarding communication generally; namely, that 1) it's a core value for leaders -- both internal communication (within the organization) and external communication -- and 2) it's a management expectation -- managers are expected to integrate good communication throughout their work, and not expect that some other part of the organization will worry about it. 

Six social-media skills every leader needs

Organizational social-media literacy is fast becoming a source of competitive advantage. Learn, through the lens of executives at General Electric, how you and your leaders can keep up.

February 2013 | by Roland Deiser and Sylvain Newton

Few domains in business and society have been untouched by the emerging social-media revolution—one that is not even a decade old. Many organizations have been responding to that new reality, realizing the power and the potential of this technology for corporate life: wikis enable more efficient virtual collaboration in cross-functional projects; internal blogs, discussion boards, and YouTube channels encourage global conversations and knowledge sharing; sophisticated viral media campaigns engage customers and create brand loyalty; next-generation products are codeveloped in open-innovation processes; and corporate leaders work on shaping their enterprise 2.0 strategy.

This radical change has created a dilemma for senior executives: while the potential of social media seems immense, the inherent risks create uncertainty and unease. By nature unbridled, these new communications media can let internal and privileged information suddenly go public virally. What’s more, there’s a mismatch between the logic of participatory media and the still-reigning 20th-century model of management and organizations, with its emphasis on linear processes and control. Social media encourages horizontal collaboration and unscripted conversations that travel in random paths across management hierarchies. It thereby short-circuits established power dynamics and traditional lines of communication.

We believe that capitalizing on the transformational power of social media while mitigating its risks calls for a new type of leader. The dynamics of social media amplify the need for qualities that have long been a staple of effective leadership, such as strategic creativity, authentic communication, and the ability to deal with a corporation’s social and political dynamics and to design an agile and responsive organization.

Social media also adds new dimensions to these traits. For example, it requires the ability to create compelling, engaging multimedia content. Leaders need to excel at cocreation and collaboration—the currencies of the social-media world. Executives must understand the nature of different social-media tools and the unruly forces they can unleash.

Equally important, there’s an organizational dimension: leaders must cultivate a new, technologically linked social infrastructure that by design promotes constant interaction across physical and geographical boundaries, as well as self-organized discourse and exchange.

We call this interplay of leadership skills and related organizational-design principles organizational media literacy, which we define along six dimensions that are interdependent and feed on one another (exhibit).

Article continues at link. 

The six skills are captured in this graphic from the article (click to enlarge). 



Social Media in 2013

Selena Larson in ReadWrite compiled a short retrospective (ten items) of notable uses of social media during 2013: 
  1. Vine and Instagram short video
  2. Twitter (more than any other social medium) and the Boston Marathon bombing 
  3. From space! Including astronauts and the Mars rover tweeting 
  4. Companies publicizing government data requests 
  5. Twitter going public 
  6. Typhoon Haiyan (and Google's Crisis Map
  7. #BatKid for the Make-A-Wish Foundation 
  8. "Selfie" is Oxford's Word of the Year 
  9. Beyonce's album 
  10. Doge 

Each item comprises a brief narrative description and links to examples. 

The Biggest Social Media Moments That Got People Talking In 2013

We’re taking a look at the most prominent hits on social media in 2013, and how they shaped the global conversation.

December 31, 2013

ReadWriteReflect offers a look back at major technology trends, products and companies of the past year.

Astronaut selfies, national tragedies, invasions of privacy and heartwarming events all made our list for the most notable social media moments this year. 

Social media is more prevalent now than ever before. Pew Internet reports that 73 percent of all U.S. adult Internet users have at least one social media account and while Facebook still remains the ubiquitous platform, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Instagram play a large part in launching viral content and communicating and documenting stories around world.

Article (and list) continues at link above.




Social Media Facts

(See also .) 

Via -- very worthy to follow if you're interested in social media, generally, and communicating and marketing with social media, in particular. 

46 Amazing Social Media Facts in 2013

Written by Jeff Bullas 

Social media in the  beginning was viewed as something teenagers did. After school they rushed to their rooms started up the computer and logged into Myspace. Remember that social network?

Facebook changed the game and the college students became the social media demographic sweet spot. Twitter then showed up and most people didn’t know what to do with it.

Questions bubbled up in many minds.

What do I do with 140 characters? Do I tell people what I am doing and where I am going? What is this URL link shortening thing? Do I follow everyone back? What is this hashtag doing on my screen?

The list goes on.

Social media is a work in progress

We were all trying to work out the social media rules of engagement, the etiquette and the manners. That is still a work in progress.

Some marketers, bloggers  and business dived in early while others dipped their toes at the edges. Everyone knew something was happening but weren’t quite sure if it was a passing fad or a generation changing trend.

That was 2008. It seems a social media lifetime ago.

In  2013 Facebook connects 1 in 2 people on the social web, has paid $1 billion for Instagram and become a public company. Twitter is going public and Pinterest has moved the pinboard from the kitchen wall to the web.

Social media marketing is moving from a free and wild west frontier to a “pay to play” model if you want to reach your audience in significant numbers. Facebook pushes us to pay to promote to obtain any meaningful attention and Twitter evolves it’s self service advertising interface and features.

We sort of knew that the freebies would start to end.

Quick glance social media facts

Here is a top 10 snack size bite of some social media facts and statistics if you haven’t the time for consuming the full infographic below.

  1. There are over 10 million Facebook “apps”
  2. Twitter’s fastest growing demographic is 55-64 year olds
  3. 60% of Twitter users access it from their mobile
  4. There are over 343 million active users on Google+
  5. The +1 button is served 5 billion times per day
  6. 67% of Google+ users are male
  7. There are over 3 million Linkedin company pages
  8. More than 16 billion photos have been uploaded to Instagram
  9. Food is the top category discussed on Pinterest at 57%

Infographics and more facts at link above. 


Social Media History

Social media -- computer-based networks that support interactions among people to create and share information and ideas (see this Wikipedia entry) -- have been here since the late '70s with the first online bulletin board systems hung on terminal programs (e.g., Telnet). 

Matt Smith, in (". . . digital productivity tips and your guide to cool stuff on the Internet"), captures the history of scoial media; it's been around a lot longer than Facebook.

Social Media: Did It Really Start With Facebook? [Geek History Lesson]

15th October, 2013

Today, Facebook dominates social media. The world’s largest social network boasts over 1 billion users, an impressive fraction of the 2.5 billion people who have Internet access worldwide. Google+ has also breached the 1 billion mark, but in terms of logins per day is quite far behind the champion.

The dominance of Zuckerberg’s juggernaut makes it easy to forget there was a time when social media was considered an open field, ready for any to stake their claim. And many did, some years before Facebook entered the fray. So what were those early social networks – and what killed them?


See link for full article -- be sure to click out on the embedded links for the full narrative.