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November 16, 2008 / compassioninpolitics

Top Seven Social Media, Online Marketing, and Internet Trends for 2009


What do you think will be the great emerging media and online trends for the upcoming year? What are your predictions about the latest trends people will be buzzing about in 2009 and 2010?

First, crowd sourcing will be a huge social media trend for 2009. Crowd souring has the potential to take off pretty big, although i don’t see the online movement in that direction. The launch of Predictify suggest such a conclusion. Also, Idea Blob has been fairly successful. There are a number of crowd sourcing creative (graphic design and video) that are bubbling to the surface beyond the e-lance model. This will only continue to increase as the need for outsourcing and budget cutting continues in 2009. The trend known as crowd funding may also see an upward and exciting trajectory. (See also: Springwise and Top Crowd sourcing Resources, Websites, + Companies)

Second, 2009 will see a re-newed focus on technology efficiency and productivity. This may push the need for filtering and make 2009 the Year of the Editor. The launch of Filtrbox has been huge in creating a better filter for the web and specifically RSS. Alltop has been another great filter for the web. I hear that Shel is working on a project in this area, but I think its longer term. The need is particularly acute in the hyper local, event, and mobile space.

Third, leveraging offline connection with online connection should be a big internet trend in 2009. Certainly the unconference movement (Podcamp, Barcamp, and almost anything else with the -camp name on it. Did you know there was a Cupcake Camp??? Yum!!! Sign me up.) and Meet up have pushed for more person to person contact, however the pressence of twitter along with the burgeoning mobile market make this a place for great innovation and great potential ROI. One of the best solutions to social networking overstrech is to provide tangible solutions. Some of this may take the form of Jellys and co-working, while others will around Meetups and Craigslist. Tribes, movements, and brands that are able to leverage offline connection will create a unique market space for themselves and will create more sustainable tribe longevity and intensity. Whether Tweet-up like events, blogs, or hubs like Ning drive this connection, it will certainly be a fantastic market differentiator. One social network who leads in this area is Yelp. Photojojo has also expanded and improved on this space. People crave real people to people connection. Will others follow in 2009?

Fourth, mobile and iPhone will continue to see massive user and application growth. Realistically, the surface has only been scratched here. As the price falls, the iPhone will continue to go mainstream and pick up users. Alternatively, can the iPhone get people to switch from a Crackberry? Ultimately, the cult of Mac may be put to the test in this regard. Luckily Mac is also empowered by developers who are rapidly putting out the next best iPhone application you will be reading and raving about in 2009.

Fifth, video driven communities that drive conversation will take off in social media. Winelibrary TV, Epic FU, and The Politico Playbook (aka Kotecki TV) have shown what video can do. Momversation, sponsored by Target, is driving conversation and community around the issues of moms. The video serves as a fantastic differentiator, creates emotional connection, and is potentially truly remarkable content.

Sixth, monetization will prove to be huge as more startups have to confront bugetary and cost-cutting issues. Contextual ads and affiliates may be surpassed by newer models for collaborative monetization. Although, the former seem more scalable for the moment. If niche companies went after the best in a given industry to serve as a filter, this space would be far easier for creative new content creators to navigate and would create a rich root system upon which open source solutions and micro-enterprise can flourish. (See also Tip Joy and Chip In)

Additional Social Media and Internet Startup Trends and Predictions for 2009:
Don’t call it a comeback: Message boards and wikis will make a resurgence both for internal communication and community conversation. This new era of message boards will have more social, aggregation, mobile and integrated features. (Gary Vanerchuk at Wine Library TV has one)

Everybody, everybody get your collaboration on. As de-centralized workspaces make social media a necessity for many startups and entrepreneurs, simple and productive project collaboration like Basecamp and Pivotal Tracker will also see a large boom.

As transparency and accountability increases in government, via initiatives like and the Sunlight Foundation, companies will increasingly open up. As corporate and government social media expands, the principles of self-organization and increased transparency will.

Will semantic web or hyper-local be big next year? Only time will tell if Hyper-local social media will make a bigger name for itself. The combination of the hugeness of mobile, twitter, and real world connection make the hyper-local a great source of innovation. Hyperlocal Blogger can keep us updated. (Tips for Hyperlocal bloggers)

If you have a post about social media trends for 2009 please leave your ideas and links in the comment section.

Aggregated Social Media 2008 to 2009 Trends and Predictions Resources:
Social Media Trends for 2008: Tom Raftery looks back at Whats Hot in Social Media for 2008?
Social Media Predictions and Trends for 2009 Trendspotting Slideshare on Social Media Trends for 2009
Social Media Trend for 2009: Social media based Recruiting and Human Resources
Social Media Trend for 2009: Increased Emphasis on Metrics and Accountability Beyond Click Thrus
Internet Technology Trends and Predictions for 2009:
Enterprise Mashups and Virtualization, which will likely increase in a world of tight budgets in 2009.

If you enjoyed this post, you may also enjoy this post about crowd sourcing.

What does the future of media look like? What do you think of this diagram from Valeria at Conversation Agent?
Or perhaps this powerpoint presentation from Mary Meeker on internet and online technology trends in 2009 is more helpful for you:

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(image credit: Jess 3)



Leave a Comment
  1. JP / Nov 17 2008 12:01 pm

    Love this post. My company is trying to pursue points 2, 3, and 4. We provide a web application for managing online groups (like Yahoo/Google Groups, but much better) and we feel that it’s all about accessibility and productivity. It called Convos ( Most of our groups are real-world groups with in-person events and activities. Mobile is one area we really want to get into because no other online group solution has really done it or done it well.

    Lastly, I also agree that message boards and wikis are going to make a comeback, but they’re going to come back with a lot more features. They’ll be easier to keep up with and more prevalent in a variety of productivity-based tools

  2. compassioninpolitics / Nov 17 2008 6:51 pm

    Thanks for the kind words JP. I look forward to checking out what you do at Convos. It sounds like you’re doing big, big tech stuff. Hopefully, I’ll see you around the blog-o-sphere or at an event…

  3. Roxanne / Nov 20 2008 6:14 pm

    Interesting predictions. I recently read another trend forecast that may interest you concerning Crackberries , Iphones and other Telcos. The surplus of users of these devices and thus the increase in audio notifications will have a negative affect on the quality of real life activities such as a business meeting, an important family dinner or a university/vocational lecture etc. The blog also provides some plausible marketing solutions for Telco companies to decrease the frequency of these rude interruptions. Take a look.

  4. Jhangora / Dec 18 2008 10:48 pm

    Came across the post while googling for web trends for 2009. Informative post. Thanx a lot. Cud u suggest some sources if I want to read more about internet+blogging trends for 2009.


  5. compassioninpolitics / Dec 19 2008 1:50 pm


    Thanks for the compliment–I’m glad that my post was useful for you.

    I suggest looking at a recent post by Peter Kim on the topic. Just Google Peter Kim and “internet trends for 2009” or “social media trends for 2009”

    Take care,

  6. Wendy Piersall / Dec 30 2008 9:34 pm

    I wrote up a post today myself about my predictions for the women’s social networking industry in 09: Women Online in 2009: 9 Trends to Watch in a Down Economy.

    Something I didn’t mention in my post, but that would be appropriate to talk about here is that I think religious and spiritual sites, especially those targeted to women, will do extremely well in 2009. Hard times induce a lot of soul-searching, and there will be many people looking for more spiritual connection in the new year.

  7. Matt / Jan 7 2009 11:06 pm

    The diagram you have on this page is interesting. can you tell me who the logos belong to on the Video Aggregation and SMS/Voice categories?

  8. compassioninpolitics / Jan 7 2009 11:16 pm


    Yes, my friend Jesse Thomas did a great job on the logo.

    I believe video aggregation is Mogulus (but I’m a bit sketchy) if you download the picture you can view it in Photoshop or most any other graphics program.

  9. Matt / Jan 8 2009 1:03 am

    thanks for that… and the logos on the SMS/Voice category are?

  10. ragulan / Feb 18 2009 4:41 am

    thanks for this good post

  11. compassioninpolitics / May 10 2009 3:07 am

    Of course the folks at Trendspotting and Read Write Web also have quite an impressive coverage of the social media trends in 2009 space.

    Thanks for reading and linking 🙂

    What trend do you see coming? What trends are you tracking?

    As the year goes on I’m increasingly of the belief that crowd sourcing, the hyper local, and mobile will all have a unique imprint on culture and communication.

  12. compassioninpolitics / Jul 3 2009 6:48 pm

    This has some interesting ideas…..

    I think in addition that “privacy” is going to be an interesting (for instance limited sharing of particular content to a limited network).

    I would emphasize that some startups will opt to play around with more freemium models like Basecamp. Finally, the presentation by Fred Wilson at Google about disruption is pretty instructive about trends.

  13. Nathan Ketsdever / Aug 14 2009 4:36 pm

    For those who are interested in the role of mobile in trends looking forward toward 2010 and beyond, this interview with Sam Altman Founder and CEO of Loopt by Charlie Rose may provide some insight: (from 7 to 9 is probably most instructive)

  14. compassioninpolitics / Sep 7 2009 11:37 pm

    This is a new video (which is a promo piece for a new book called Socialnomics) which speaks to the issue of social media trends in 2009.

  15. compassioninpolitics / Aug 10 2010 8:20 pm

    This article on the crowd sourcing of the Netflix algorithm is cool:

    Update: in terms of the mobile space (and the location based social networking space), it seems Four Square and Go Walla are much better positioned than Loopt to “win” in the space.


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