What did 2007 stand for?

MySpace New Year's Eve Party


Greg Verdino summed up his take on 2007 in a great post earlier this month.  You’ll want to go check it out to get the nuances of his thoughts, but in a very abbreviated form — he said the top 7 trends that defined 2007 were:

Merger Mania:  Seems like everyone is buying someone…

Presence and Accounted for:  Every day there’s a new beta for a social network being launched and everyone’s rushing to give each and every one a try.

Facebook Frenzy: About a bazillion people there.  Nuff said.

The Mobile Year that Wasn’t:  Everyone predicted this was going to be the year that mobile marketing was going to take off. Oops, not so much.

The Birth of Virtual Natives:
  Second Life to Webkinz.  If you aren’t a member of one now…you will be.

Writers Wronged:  What impact will the writer’s strike have on online content, videos etc.

And then Greg left #7 blank — asking readers to share what they thought was the 7th significant trend of the year. 

So, here’s my take.  A year ago, Time Magazine named YOU (meaning us) the person of the year….heralding the power and influence of social media.

It had to be the most talked about news item on blogs (other than the iPhone release) in ’07.  And you can’t blame us. It’s tough being one of the first few million to do something, trying to break through.  A little recognition is nice.

But…I think trend #7 is that the celebration was pretty premature.  I believe that we’re still very much social media pioneers, a few million of us or not.  And we are standing at the base of a very steep mountain.  The climb is not going to be easy or short.

Step away from people who blog, read blogs, the media, marketing and advertising folks…and you will find a vast majority of human beings who are completely unaware of what social media means.  If  you said Second Life to them, they’d think you meant Saturday Night Live or you want to talk about your religious beliefs.  They might have heard the word blog but it has no relevance to them.  They don’t understand that social media has power — let alone how to harness it.  Bottom line — we’re not on their radar screen yet.

As Gavin is famous for saying — you know something is mainstream when your grandma gets it.  Well, grandma doesn’t get it yet.

I don’t take this as bad news, by the way.  We’re riding the first wave of social media.  It’s not mainstream yet but it will be.  And we get to cut the path.

I believe trend #7 is/was that the euphoric fog lifted and most of us now recognize that while the journey is going to be a long one — the ride is going to be a blast!

How about you — what do you think the 7th trend that defined ’07 was?

New Year’s image courtesy of www.New-Year.in

Related posts:
AdAge jumps on the YOU bandwagon
What was most significant in 2006?
My turn at offering a marketing prediction

10 comments on “What did 2007 stand for?

  1. David Reich says:

    My pick for #7 might be the continuing move toward online news, and many newspapers finally embracing it as a way to hold onto readers and catch ad dollars that are migrating to other media. Or it might be the growth of citizen journalism. I’ve written about this before, at my 2 cents and at a Marketing Profs Daily Fix, and I’m not crazy about the idea. But we are seeing non-journalists catching news with their cellphone cameras or video cameras, and eventually seeing it TV newscasts. It’s fraught with risks, but it does seem to be a trend that will only escalate.

  2. In 2008 the hype will continue. Is it bad for mobile marketing? It depends; mobile marketers should hop on the slide board and ride the wave as unless they want to be left behind like grandma.

    So if you are in mobile marketing and ask your self how I can join, here’s what I say:
    Make it social- Ask your customers to invite their friends if they like your service and offer them an instant reward for doing so. Customers will also share messages such as MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) that contains pictures or video and audio, providing that the messages are impressive or entertaining.

    By riding the social wave and adopting other customer oriented approaches like RegiSoft and other successful companies do, I believe 2008 will also be the year for mobile marketing. What do you think?

  3. Doug Meacham says:

    Hey Drew, From the looks of the comments, the 7th trend for 2007 might be people (spammers?) using blog comments to try and market their stuff.

    But seriously, I totally agree with your point. Those of us who have drunk the Kool-Aid tend to get caught up in our little social media world, but at the end of the day, most people don’t yet get it and of those that do, many simply don’t have the time to participate on a regular basis. Regarding my thoughts on a #7, I think 2007 was a year for disruptive technology products like iPhone, Wii, HD everything and to a lesser extent, Amazon’s Kindle. These products are game-changers and will continue to influence industry trends and business models for the foreseeable future.

  4. Scott Monty says:

    I don’t know, Drew. Do you think this whole Internet thing is gonna catch on? 😉

    I think 2008 will be the year in which major advertisers start to think differently about their budgets. While I’d like to see social media take a more prominent role (and I think it will, but not THE prominent role), I think the digital channels at large will increase in importance. Leading this drive will be the desire for more robust metrics.

    So far, the results from the push for metrics have fallen flat. Let’s see if we can make some progress in ’08!

  5. David,

    The line between journalist and citizen journalist is a fine one, isn’t it? At what point, for you professionally, does it cross the line?

    Is snapping a photo or talking about an event you happen to witness really fall into the “citizen journalist” category?


  6. Lori,

    So if I am understanding you — you’re saying that mobile marketers need to find a blend of YouTube and Facebook? Let the social network aspects of the tool do the viral work?

    I see that you are from Regisoft. What would you say was your most successful campaign of 2007?


  7. Lew,

    I hope that 2008 shows us that trend as well. Getting your book into as many hands as possible will help with that!

    What do you think the 7th trend for ’07 was? Have we begun to set the stage for your ’08 wish to come true?


  8. Nick,

    I agree — people invest far too little in talking to their own customers. Hopefully ’08 will be the year of talking to your own.


  9. Doug,

    Yes…clearly on this post anyway. Most of the worst offenders have been reported. I don’t mind someone talking about their company, as long as they really are trying to extend the conversation.

    You’re right — this has been a year of category busting products like the iPhone and Wii. Do you believe Kindle will be as strong an influence?


  10. Scott,

    LOL! Yes, I think the internet might just be here to stay. I think you’re right and wrong. I think some agencies will (and have) already seen the light and are broadening their view in terms of where to spend their dollars.

    But I also think some of the big, traditional agencies are going to give lip service to all this new fangled thinking…but are going to cling to their old ways.

    That’s happened before…but the big advertisers stayed put too. Now…I think the big advertisers are/will begin to push for the shift. The question is…how quickly can/will the big agencies adapt?

    Interesting times ahead.


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