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The Social Media Landscape Ahead

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Gartner came out with their Social Software Predictions for 2010, and I thought they were rather interesting.

1) By 2014, social networking services will replace e-mail as the primary vehicle for interpersonal communications for 20 percent of business users.

"The rigid distinction between e-mail and social networks will erode. E-mail will take on many social attributes, such as contact brokering while social networks will develop richer e-mail capabilities," said Matt Cain, research vice president at Gartner. "While e-mail is already almost fully penetrated in the corporate space, we expect to see steep growth rates for sales of premises- and cloud-based social networking services."

Actually, I see that as a terribly safe prediction, and I'd even go so far as say as, with the email becoming so noisy with spam and the like, that social networking will comprise up to 50 percent of communications within companies.

2) By 2012, over 50 percent of enterprises will use activity streams that include microblogging, but stand-alone enterprise microblogging will have less than 5 percent penetration.

The huge popularity of the consumer-microblogging service Twitter, has led many organizations to look for an "enterprise Twitter," that provides microblogging functionality with more control and security features to support internal use between employees. Enterprise users want to use microblogging for many of the same reasons that consumers do to share quick insights, to keep up with what colleagues are doing, to get quick answers to questions and so on.

An enterprise twitter, huh? I'd venture it fall in the range more of a part-Wiki, part-Twitter, maybe part Wave, and part something else that isn't in wide use or simply hasn't been invented yet. Like a Facebook for work, but solely for work.

3) Through 2012, over 70 percent of IT-dominated social media initiatives will fail.

Just 70 percent? Mass acceptance and use is the secret to success in social media, which means all the others will simply wither and die. And it sometimes seems to me right now that everyone has a social media idea in the works, so I'd put the failure rate closer to 95 percent myself.

4) Within five years, 70 percent of collaboration and communications applications designed on PCs will be modeled after user experience lessons from smartphone collaboration applications.

Agree, and that's why I think, even though the debut of the iPad was most underwhelming, Apple, and their lessons from the iPhone, will soon make the iPad a most formidable IT product in the marketplace.

5) Through 2015, only 25 percent of enterprises will routinely utilize social network analysis to improve performance and productivity.

Don't really have any experience of my own to speak of to counter the 25 percent, but if it's only that much, than that'll be a pity...customer feedback loops are critical, and most customers are gonna use social media for their feedback. I mean, look at Toyota. Wozniak has been trying to tell them about the problem for three months!

To see Gartner's full report, just click here.

1 Comment

I doubt most of those predictions, especially the first one. Email will always be the leading way of communication, social media is just a fad.

ebizQ’s expert blog team covers a broad range of BPM, business integration, business analytics/monitoring, collaboration, content and related issues.

Peter Schooff

Peter Schooff is Contributing Editor at ebizQ, and manager of the ebizQ Forum. Contact him at pschooff@techtarget.com

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