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You Need to Know This. Seriously.

November 9, 2009

A few months ago, Forrester released a study on the future of the social web. If it weren’t for the $499 price tag, I would be downloading this PDF to study it further. In interviewing 24 companies and vendors, the authors have gathered content on the current and future states of social media and extracted 5 Eras of the social web.

Thankfully, Brian Solis wrote about the 5 Eras in more depth on his blog last week.

These are explained more fully in the chart below, and I’ve summed them up, albeit a bit briefly…

RELATIONSHIPS: 1995-2007: AOL was the start of the connections in online communities, where people with similar profiles connected with eachother.

FUNCTIONALITY: 2007-2012: We are in the era currently, and as we all know, the focus is on the activity within social networks, and the content that we share. Through 2010, how we connect to people will continue to evolve.

COLONIZATION: 2009-2011: Again, are in the midst of this era, where communities are beginning to traverse the internet with applications like Facebook Connect and OpenID. In time, people will take their identities with them across platforms.

CONTEXT: 2010-2012: Sites are already being customized (think about your suggestions that appear for sites like and Barnes and Noble) and the internet will continue to evolve to deliver personalized experiences, based not only on your actions, but on the actions and recommendations of your friends.

COMMERCE: 2011-2013: Social networks will gain power over brands

As the 5th era is ushered in, Solis believes that CRM will evolve into SRM, with a full focus on people, and that all people are equal. Most importantly, a portable online identity will be crucial.

Screen shot 2009-11-08 at 7.28.18 PM

One Comment leave one →
  1. gerikfurlan permalink
    November 10, 2009 5:54 am

    Two excellent, informative posts back-to-back. Nice way of pulling out the info and summarizing it. Good inclusion of the visual. Excellent work.

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