20.8.09

So Just When Will Social Media Make Money?


I read this piece from the Torygraph today which very much focuses on the negative aspects of social media. For those in the know, there’s nothing in the piece which will surprise you but for the digerati passionate about social media and its potential it will infuriate.

I take its point about Twitter’s drop-out rates and the dangers of revealing compromising information online, but the second is a pure common sense thing - someone acting as stupidly as the recent Facebook sacking girl deserves to get fired. But there is one point the writer raised which I can’t throw back at him – social networks are not making money.

Despite huge user bases and incredible potential (in theory) to market more accurately, neither Twitter, Facebook, Bebo – nobody – is really making money. And if they’re going to survive, they’re going to need to start doing so.

However, the business/social benefits to all of us make it worthwhile to keep the likes of Twitter and Facebook going. Should they introduce subscriptions now we’ve all test-run them for free? Should they introduce voluntary contribution set-ups like for tinyurl and OpenOffice?

If I were either of them I’d ask for a small nominal yearly fee (under £10) to take part. That’d get rid of a lot of the wastage on Twitter. As a freelancer in the digital marketing space it’s a critical tool for me to interact with others, educate myself on the latest developments and has even won me clients.

I would pay to use Twitter – would you?

[Image: some of the feedback from the article on Twitter today]

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