Holy Millennium, Batman, "SoMe" is Incredible!
At the ripe old age of twenty-something, I've often thought that my generation got the short end of the stick as far as major technological changes go. My grandparents and parents have witnessed the development of so many more cool things in their lifetime than I have; a man on the moon, commercial flight, color TV, the list really could go on and on.
When I was a kid I figured the new millennium would be like the Jetsons or Back to the Future. I was ready to sign on that dotted line to lease my flying car once we hit Y2K, man!
Whelp, I'm still waiting on that flying car. But in the meantime, I finally woke up and realized that I've been living smack dab in one heckuva communications revolution. This "social media" (SoMe) mumbo-jumbo is actually pretty amazing stuff on so many levels. The epidemic that is Facebook, Twitter, text-marketing, and all the rest has changed absolutely everything about human interaction as well as the strategic puzzle of marketing.
There's no mystery to SoMe. These tools permit marketers to communicate with their customers more like their ancestors did. Today's businesses can have conversations with customers and potential customers just like the old general store proprietor did nearly 200 years ago. The main difference is that marketers today are having these conversations with people thousands of miles away on their computers and phones instead of face-to-face at the local cafe or barbershop.
You know, as complicated and high-tech as these new media tools are, they actually allow us to communicate with each other in ways that seem more like a scene from Little House on the Prairie than Star Trek.
I'm amazed by all that we have at our fingertips – literally – that past generations didn't. SoMe has enabled us to reach out to those from our past, create new relationships for the future, use our home & work computers as a marketplace, take advantage of our freedom of speech... and all in the amount of time it takes for our little fingers to hit those keys and press "enter."
Wow, we really are lucky to be living in this time of a complete communication revolution.
(I'm still bitter about not having the flying car, though.)
*Photographs copyright Hanna-Barbera Productions and Mattel.