I recently published a guest post on The Atlantic's Quartz site at (www.qz.com) that is viewable here that ushered out social networking due to deteriorating user engagement levels yet ushered in widespread social engagement.
Social is dead? Long live social?
Yes, this paradox is attributable to some powerful behavioral and economic forces that have always treated new social technologies in this way. I wanted to share a few more observations not addressed in the Quartz piece that explains these points. These points are covered in more detail in my just released book SOCIAL INC. which is available on Amazon.
What's happening is that social is fragmenting—as it always does. The big community gathering spot of Facebook has educated billions about this new technology, and now we're all taking it back to our specific domains and exploiting it—because it works. It's a new way to connect, communicate, collaborate and shape community.
Rule #1 Of SOCIAL INC.
Social technology is about human behavior. Once human behavior changes it rarely reverts back. The Facebooks and Twitters of the world have taught us new ways to engage and interact with each other. These interactions can be exploited now in different domains, like the domain of work or like the domain of machines. That means that instead of just people-people connections people-machine connections can exploit these social tools and engagement techniques.
The Experience Will Set You Free
Billions of people have voted with their wallets and time in using today's social technology. Business will take over this next chapter in social's evolution to create engaging experiences through new man-machine interfaces everywhere. By bringing spatial and temporal relevance into interactions through these social tools, enormous economic gains can also be realized. The implications are far reaching because when human behavior and economic forces change, disruption follows.
Labor models will be re-imagined and competitive advantages will be created and destroyed along with these changes. Over time mankind has evolved in a positive way each time there has been a major social technology advancement that changes the basics of information exchange. We get more productive, smarter and innovative because of these tools.
Control ='s Innovation
But they also disrupt the status-quo which invites control from authority frameworks everywhere. But it's at this point where the tide turns—control signals a major period of innovation is around the corner. By understanding and lasso'ing the primal power of these technologies business always reinvents the future.
We're at the cusp of a major period of social technology driven reinvention—a cycle of business mutation and "creative destruction" as coined by the famed economist Joseph Schumpeter. Thankfully, it's arrived just in time—the world needs a next new thing.
And I'm curious to see what Facebook's encore will be, but stay tuned to social search.