Social media – a revolution in human communication

How small businesses can get in amongst it.

What is everyone talking about?
Still haven’t figured out how social media can benefit your business – you are not alone; whilst there are millions using social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and YouTube applying this new media for business gain is another story.

Why bother even thinking about social media?
The world has really changed right front of our eyes. Back in May 2008 the Sichuan Provence in China experienced a devastating earthquake. This was reported by the citizens of China as it happened – in real time. People were capturing the moving buildings as it occurred via text messages, twitter, uploading video and images to the internet.

As the rest of the world was waking up, the Chinese community watched. On Twitter the quake topped 9 out of 10 related topics in the first hour. In fact, the BBC discovered the earthquake via Twitter before the US Geometrical Survey website even reported it.

The last time China had a quake of that magnitude it took them three months to admit it had happened. They had no choice this time; their own citizens beat them to it.

Social media is a revolution in human communication.

Social Media is not a fad.
Think about this – the printing press was the first time we could replicate a message for a mass audience. The telex and telephone meant we could have conversations with someone not in the same room. The invention of photography and cinema we could again talk to the masses. With radio the masses could listen at the same time and the addition of television in our lives changed the way we socialised forever and how we all received the news.

Now, social media means two-way conversations with large groups of people at the same time, gathering around to talk about a piece of information (in the virtual space). And for the first time, the layman on the street, the individual, the business, have all become the creators of content.

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