Abridged with the author’s permission from PostAdvertising.
If you’re a marketer planning for 2012 (maybe a bit late), where should you start? The Post-Advertising team has gathered a list of the websites, social communities, and mobile applications poised for a successful 2012 that need to be on your radar. Not all will fit in your strategy, but if there is a common bond then you may want to get started ASAP. If you wait until 2013, you’ll be too late.
Content curation is nothing new. Juggernauts like Digg and Reddit have been utilizing the masses to curate the best of the Web for years now. But in 2011, new technologies emerged that took the power of curation, designed it for the numerous devices we work with (web, smartphone, tablet) and fused it with features from successful social sites, creating semi-niche communities that exploded in popularity.
Hot curation sites:
- Pinterest Pinterest broke onto the scene in late 2011, just recently cracking the top ten most trafficked social websites with hockey-stick-like membership growth. Users curate content they like— websites, photos, videos, and just about anything that lives on the web—by “pinning” it to their board. (Web, app)
- Flipboard While one of the older apps on the list, Flipboard’s success (and predicted growth in 2012) shows how important it is for brands to create their own content. Flipboard, a “pocket-sized social magazine” pulls content from your social networks (namely the feeds of those you friend/follow) and delivers it in a magazine format. The more your brand creates sharable content, the more likely it is to show up in social feeds and apps like Flipboard. (app) Related: Zite, Instapaper
As we put more of our lives onto the Web for semi-public consumption, it’s no surprise that our physical belongings have begun to pop up for sharing (of sorts) as well. 2011 saw the emergence of sites that allow community members to share (not always for free though): connecting travelers on a budget to connect with property owners with extra space, and people who own things with people who need said things. These sites have slowly begun to change the way people travel and purchase. If a brand can find a way to create a platform or community to connect, or help sponsor a preexisting community, it can win in 2012.
Hot sharing sites:
- Airbnb Just a few years ago there was no convenient way to connect travelers looking for accommodations with owners who wanted to rent their space on a short-term basis. Airbnb created “a trusted community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique spaces around the world” to help solve this problem. (Web, mobile) Related: Couch Surfing
- Neigh*borrow Need a few power tools to finish that bathroom project but don’t want to drop a few hundred dollars? Neigh*borrow is an online marketplace specializing in “things people need to use but don’t need to own.” It connects people who are geographically or socially close to one another and provides the tools to reduce the “friction” of sharing. Think of it as eBAY for things you don’t keep, but use when you need and return. (Web) Related: Zaarly
Jon Thomas is Communications Director for Story Worldwide and can be followed on Twitter @Story_Jon. Check out the full version of his post for additional hot choices of sites in the music and food/drink/entertainment realms.