Exclusive Social Networks Might Be the Next Small Thing

http://socialmediatoday.com/christian-arno/822096/fragmented-market-rise-niche-social-networks

While Facebook might have close to one billion users and dominates the social media market share today, new specialized social networks are starting to gain some momentum.  Their position in social media might be considered negligible in terms of popularity, but that may very well be the intent. Because they provide more exclusive platforms, these new companies keep memberships lower in numbers, yet high in the quality of their targeted niches.

While it might be sometime before an individual threat to Facebook emerges, these new social platforms could decrease the company’s market share collectively in the near future.  The precedent is simple.  Facebook is an enormous and often overwhelming platform that might intimidate or overwhelm some users.  Instead, the users of these smaller platforms might be more keen on interacting with others that share the same ideals, status, or interests, and could find more value in these smaller, specific groups.  This differs from Facebook in that a user isn’t necessarily connected to a general population, but to a smaller, more intimate segment in some aspect of the user’s life.

By identifying “gaps” in the market, new social media companies offer users other platforms to network in many different capacities.  Companies like SumZero that connects professional investors, or Best of All Worlds, an invitation only platform aimed at finding leaders in industries, are just a couple of these new specialized social media newbies that focus on specific niches.  Platforms like Salamworld goes beyond status and professional identities, and focuses on religion,

As the social media industry develops, it’s not uncommon for new companies or concepts to fall apart.  It will be interesting to see how well these niche companies succeed, and if people want to specify their social media interactivity.  Only time will tell if these niche platforms will eventually pose a direct threat to Facebook.

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3 thoughts on “Exclusive Social Networks Might Be the Next Small Thing

  1. I do believe that such niche media companies are very promising and one day they will rival Facebook, In my opinion, Facebook is just a platform for socialization, adding someone you may or may not know as friends. You can’t really get any very valuable or useful information from that. However, those niche media companies target specific group of people who have some in common. These companies serve for particular segment and try to provide the best quality of service. People who use these social media would feel very comfortable and satisfied about these platform. And more importantly, users can discuss and share a lot of useful information which might be helpful for their career and education. In this way, these niche social media generate more utility for people than Facebook does.

  2. I think these new niche websites are the direction social media is heading. Facebook and Twitter put so much out there to the public, I see people becoming increasingly more private. These social sites will create an environment for people to share ideas, photos, etc. with family and close friends, rather than hundreds of connections. It will be interesting to watch these sites grow in the next couple years.

  3. Just this past weekend I was speaking to a friend who just moved back into the city from Ukraine. I asked him how he still keeps in touch with his friends from Ukraine and he told me through a social media website which is basically the Russian version of Facebook. After reading this article, I agree that smaller networks will be around for a while since people with the same ideals and interests will always find a way to interact with one another.

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