Social media trends & resolutions for 2012

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Drawn by Mya, age 9.

There have been plenty of great posts looking at social media trends for 2012, and while opinions may vary it’s clear 2012 is going to be an exciting year.

For our own post, we wanted to turn to the Social: IRL community and bring a diverse range of opinions and perspectives representing brands, agencies, vendors and educators.

We asked two questions: What key trend are you watching in 2012? What’s your personal social media resolution for 2012?

The replies are below and include some great insights. Enjoy, and feel free to share your thoughts or add your own comments using Twitter hashtag #socialirl.


What key trend are you watching in 2012?


Jason Falls, Social Media Explorer

The trend I’m watching in 2012 is mobile. But it’s less about QR codes and Near Field Communications and more about the upward trend of people browsing the web from mobile devices and how mobile is going to impact our application of digital strategies in general. I believe that if your website doesn’t have a mobile version or isn’t optimized for mobile devices in some way, your digital marketing will suffer great losses in the coming year.


Gary Lee,  mBLAST

The growth and direction of Google+.   This has great potential to encroach on one or more of the existing tools.    Especially fascinating to watch where teenagers and 20-somethings will start communicating on social.   They have by and large not adopted Twitter and gone to Facebook. Will that continue?


Simran Sethi,  Award-winning journalist & academic

As a journalist and journalism educator, I am really interested in crowdsourced storytelling. Storify is a good starting platform for this kind of engagement (see examples from my class here), but I think we’ll see more efficient – and visually engaging – platforms in the year ahead.


Jordan Viator, Spredfast

One of the biggest trends we’re keeping an eye on at Spredfast is businesses operationalizing social media. As organizations adopt and embrace social media across the entire business, social becomes more exciting, and more complex, for organizations to scale. For this reason we think social business framework and technology will be huge components of success in 2012.


 Justin Gardner, AMC Theatres

Key trend is social crm. Basically, how to tie all of your followers and fans back to loyalty so the messaging can be more relevant and engaging. And, as always, ROI refinement.


Megan Berry, Klout

I believe community management will be come a much more metrics focused business, best practices will be more fully developed and in general it will become a much more serious part of almost any business.


Jake Jacobson, Garmin

Transparent conversations. As everyone gets more savvy with social media relationships – from business (marketing, support, recruitment) to personal (networking, dating, knowledge sharing) – there are fewer hiding places and gimmicks. I’m looking forward to more authentic dialogue, and seeing how that evolves on a larger scale.


Joe Cox, SocialVolt

It would be cool if 2012 was the year that brands really began activating their advocates to the fullest.  Now that brands have amassed such huge communities on their social channels, it’s time that they start to segment that audience from cool to hot based on how much they engage and what influence that they wield. Be on the lookout for brands like Red Bull or Adidas to begin creating experiences for their top tier fan base that will ripple through their entire marketing mix, including traditional media.


Jessica Best, emfluence

I’ll be watching in 2012 for how businesses in particular use rich media like photos and video and less comprehensive social networks like Pinterest or Instagram as part of their marketing campaigns. I especially think that 2012, will be a turning point for video experiences via email and mobile.


alissa sheley, Jones Huyett Partners

I’m going to be watching several key social media trends in 2012. Facebook’s launch of timeline for brands, the growth of Pinterest and Google+’s updated brand pages. Each of these will impact the strategies we use at jhP and what we’re recommending to our clients.


Eric Melin, Spiral16

As marketers become more familiar with the idea of monitoring the web for business and mining it for insight, we’ll see the focus shift from wanting lots of big, dumb numbers to wanting more accurate, contextualized data. It will be more about the flexibility of the data allowing you to gain specific web intelligence rather than sheer volume of posts and counting the number of followers, likes, etc.


Kevin Magee, Expion

Key trend we are watching is the move by bigger brands to get local and closer to their customers. We have clients using geo-targeting, centrally managed local pages or local pages with local employees supporting (the Applebees model) to get local.  It gets very sophisticated at the global level and our architecture supports multiple levels of permissions and access for large global brands and the numerous agencies that support them.


Larry Levy, Appinions

Influencer management programs.


Ryan Cole, Colab Digital

Mobile, mobile, mobile. 2011 was the year of the tablet. Although the iPad 2continues to grow in popularity, there are several suitable and more affordable alternatives, like the Kindle Fire. 2012 will be the year of the mobile app or website. It’s not enough for a businesses website to look good on a computer, they must function on these new devices and push people to more interactive channels like Facebook or Twitter. The rise of these tablets and more smart phone sales means that a business must meet people on their devices or on their social networks.


Kevin Garber, ManageFlitter

I think 2012 will be the year of “the brand and social media”.  I think it will be the year that smart brands will find ways to use social media that adds real value to their customers.  Social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Google+ realize brands very well may be where they will make their money so they are all scrambling to iterate and get their brand offerings right.  The right platform tools together with brands that have tasted the power of social media will combine for some interesting social media brand initiatives.


Brett Greene, Hip Chameleon

How social gestures (instant sharing of your activities without having to click anything) expand from Facebook’s platform across other social networks.  As social gestures expand so will the opportunities for brands to connect with the public to spread word of mouth.


Justin Goldsborough, Fleishman-Hillard

I think 2012 is finally the year of mobile. Three years late, since the first time I heard that was in 2009. Smartphone proliferation is going to make it too easy for us not to do a whole lot more with our phones. If you look at the newer models, they come with all your social media apps and instant Web access just a click away. Plus, the proliferation of unlimited data plans means people aren’t as worried about Web surfing know showing up via phone bill overages later. So I’ll be watching mobile…and more specifically, watching for those brands that use it the right way and those that just throw up a QR code or app without context and call it good.



What are your personal social media new years resolutions for 2012?


Jason Falls, Social Media Explorer

My resolution is to introduce a new market research product to the market place that is both cost effective and useful for people. Stay tuned!


Gary Lee,  mBLAST

Share more meaningful content, and also have a little fun across social in 2012.


Simran Sethi,  Award-winning journalist & academic

I am a big fan of microblogging. I teach it and I use it for networking and research in my journalistic work. In 2012, I want to refine my focus around social media for social change, looking at the use of SMS in developing nations to address social problems ranging from HIV-AIDS to poverty.


Jordan Viator, Spredfast

In 2012, I’m resolving to be even more responsive and active in social conversations in my networks. With so much activity, engagement and great minds sharing ideas openly, people must go beyond sharing their own content – the time is now to immerse myself (and yourself) into the real-time treasure trove of conversations and content.”


 Justin Gardner, AMC Theatres

Personal social goals…engage more with the people I follow and with those who follow me. And. More trend and thought leadership blogging. Additionally, how can social media empower independent film makers and help them reach a broader audience.


Megan Berry, Klout

I’d like to blog more on my personal blog ( as well as on other outlets I guest post at such as Mashable and Huffington Post.


Jake Jacobson, Garmin

Expand and immerse in three ways: 1) more sharing/implementing ideas to promote nonprofits; 2) more spreading responsibilities and ownership in Garmin’s social media efforts; and 3) more collaborating with and learning from friends and brands who I look up to in the social media space.


Joe Cox, SocialVolt

Start treating my streams with a little more respect.  95% of the news I get, online conversations I have & awesome content I share with others originates from something I first saw on my stream.  It’s all about being my own best filter and filling my streams with as much valuable relevant content as possible.  Separate the signal from noise and I’ll be able to learn twice as much, have better conversations and share even more awesome content.


Jessica Best, emfluence

My personal resolution is to follow more hashtags that are related to my business and area of study and to try out at least one new network, even if I can’t see its value yet


alissa sheley, Jones Huyett Partners

My personal social media New Year’s resolution is to do a better job of incorporating updates on my Google+ profile. Since I’m not a fan of syndicated posts that go across multiple social networks, I’ve got to figure out what types of information I’m going to share on Google+ and then start doing it on a more consistent basis.


Eric Melin, Spiral16

To better manage my time. In addition to creating helpful blog content, I want to spend an hour a day commenting and communicating with others, even when I have other pressing deadlines. Community is still the most important thing and its easy for that step to get lost in the day-to-day craziness of my job.


Ryan Cole, Colab Digital

There are so many different things happening with social networks and online communication currently and as a social media management company, people turn to us at Colab Digital to provide them the proper solution time and time again. We want to continue to use these new networks as early adopters, like Google+ and determine whether they are beneficial to a small business wanting to market using inexpensive online communication. Sometimes the answer is yes, but many times the answer is “not right now, maybe in the future.” It’s our job to connect businesses with people where they are. Facebook, Twitter and YouTube will always be top dogs in this world. We want to use each of these networks better for Colab Digital next year, but most importantly for our clients.


Kevin Garber, ManageFlitter

To keep iterating intelligently on our ManageFlitter platform so we can keep serving our faithful user base well.


Brett Greene, Hip Chameleon

My main social media goal for 2012 is to optimize my time spent on social networking by doing monthly reviews of my time spent using social media.  With more networks emerging every week I find that being strategic about where I invest the most time connecting online is becoming more important.


Justin Goldsborough, Fleishman-Hillard

My resolution is to have more valuable conversations via social media and fewer of them. Not sure about everyone else, but I’ve been suffering from social media fatigue this year. I usually set aside 30 minutes in the morning to look at Twitter, Facebook and blog comments and too many times I’ve found that time stretching into a couple of hours as I try to comment in as many places as possible. What do we tell our clients all the time? Well, I tell ours that social media is about value, not volume. Sounds like I need to take some of my own advice in 2012.

A second resolution would be to help people understand the difference between influencers and ambassadors, and why the latter can be much more valuable for your brand. PR is too focused on influencers overall, in my opinion. Ambassadors – your brands true fans – may not have the same number of likes and followers as the influencers you target do, but they are often more passionate and their passion is sustainable over a much longer period of time. Translation…more value to your clients.


And a few social media resolutions from friends on Twitter…



Be more strategic, and spend more time training others on how to use it well



Our goal for 2012 is to measure our facebook engagements and interactions more effectively to show how it translates to sales



I’d like to start using Google+, particularly the Hangouts, a lot more. Old habits are hard to break though.



Mine is to incorporate more video. Both highly polished and professional and impromptu/off-the-cuff



Implementing more of a routine on blogging aka actually using my editorial calendar and expand my services to B2B SM training



Create more stock content for @free (i.e. static pages, blog content). We have gotten good at “flow”, but need work on stock.



My 2012 SM goal is to finally start that blog I set up over a year ago!



Start managing my hubby’s political campaign twitter – successfully! Learn more about hashtags, RTs and how to reach more ppl.



To continue engaging others & learning about new tools available



I want to clean out my Facebook and stop using it less. More and more I don’t see the point.



Be more focused in spending time with those who care about me as a person and want to see me succeed in life.



To continue to engage like minded people. Also to push out more of my own content (website materials) to that group



Tweet less with more interesting/sharable content.



Less passive aggression. Maybe. #imnofunanymore



To write and read more and to spend less time on social in general. Not sure how that will work :)



Encourage colleagues to contribute to social media content



Expand our strategy beyond Twitter and Fbook. They’re great, but what about underutilized platforms like@Pinterest and @klout?



To strengthen my end-user base & provide continued meaningful & timely information



Trim my twitter timeline



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