11 Things, Ideas and Trends to Follow in 2011

2010 is so over, lets start off 2011 right by looking at some bright ideas for the future.

1.  Real Time Search – If it’s happening right now on the internet, real time search will help you find it. As more content is being shared via social networks, there will be a greater need for real time searching. It is also a great tool to help companies deal with customer service and news junkies get breaking news faster.

2.  Apple TV and Google TV - It’s too early to call this the end of regular TV has we know it. But the ability to stream TV shows and internet content to our TVs and computers whenever we’d like is definitely shaking up the Cable TV industry.

3. Conferences, Meetups and Events - Want to get real smart, real quick? Attend or follow meetups, conferences and movements. I know that I’m going to keep a watchful eye on the events during Digital Capital (DC) Week plus many more this year. If you can’t attend, you can usually follow the conference hashtag on Twitter for nuggets of wisdom from speakers and attendees.

4. Mobile - More and more people are viewing their social networks, email and websites via smart phones, in addition to using them to play games. That shift to mobile is only going to get bigger as smart phones been come affordable and more people adopt tablet-devices such as the iPad.

5. Social Shopping – Between Google almost acquiring Groupon, buying products via Facebook fan pages and retail stores offering mobile apps, social shopping is only going to get bigger due to deal-hungry shoppers.

6. Integration – Social media should become integrated with all of your marketing plans. The Old Spice Guy was a great example of one campaign that cut across on print, TV and social networks. Admittedly, this is not always easy to do; but in the very least, you should be thinking of promoting your campaigns across multiple channels.

7. Crowdsourced Content – Yes, content will always be king and yes, the customer is always right. Smush them together by crowdsourcing ideas. You will get people who know your product the best to generate great ideas for you to create a better business. That’s a double yes.

8. The Internet Meme - According to Wiki, term is used to describe a concept that spreads via the Internet. They can evolve and spread quickly, reaching a large crowd of people and then sometimes disappear within a few days. Memes are like leprechauns; if a company can catch one, they get a pot of (advertising) gold.

9. Start-ups – Who is going to be the next Facebook? Well, that is still up in the air (if that is even possible). But tech some start-ups are gaining a lot of speed. For one example, check out the photo sharing app for iPhone called Instagram, which registered 1 million users in just a few months.

10. Facebook- So, Facebook was king in 2010, and it topped Google as the most visited website of the year. Lets face it (pun) Facebook is here to stay.

11. The last thing you need to follow in 2011 is your social media plan. Make sure this year you are create a plan, follow it and, most importantly, if it doesn’t work, change it.

What are you going to follow in 2011?