3 Topics to Talk (and Tweet) About at #SocialMediaWeek


(This was originally posted yesterday on www.SocialMediaWeek.org)


Need something to discuss at #SMW? Wondering which topics will emerge as hot-button conversation pieces? Based on what’s generating buzz now, and what we’re expecting to see in the coming months, here are my predictions:

1. Location based (geo-social) apps are here, there, everywhere. Foursquare, Gowalla, Yelp, Loopt and a handful of others have been making waves lately. What changes will they bring to the social media world?

These services will continue to grow in 2010 because they integrate well with pre-existing platforms like Facebook and Twitter and allow users to track their whereabouts in real time. You can learn about places nearby, get specials or coupons, and find your friends in the area. 360i’s David Berkowitz explained the key differences between these apps in an article published earlier this week.

Given the growing popularity of mobile-social platforms, don’t be surprised to see a large number of people at Social Media week “checking in” at the various events. You may even meet some mayors. (Editor’s Note: Stay tuned — We’ll soon be publishing a guide on using geo-location services at Social Media Week right here on the blog.)

2. Facebook and Twitter continue to dominate. Nothing new here — between Facebook’s revamped privacy settings and new currency, Facebook Credits, the world’s largest social network is a mainstay in social media conversation. Not to be outdone,Twitter has recently implemented Local Trends. Has that changed the way you search through tweets?

3. Where does social media fit within non-profits and fund raising initiatives? Working for a non-profit, I have seen first hand what social media and other online apps and tools can do for cash-strapped organizations and small businesses. There are a number of sessions at the New York event that will address this very topic. You can read all about them and register here.

The rise of social media has allowed the world to both help and witness the recent devastating earthquake in Haiti. Through numerous organizations, celebrities and personal efforts, millions of dollars were raised online and through text messaging, demonstrating the unique power of social media to spread awareness and drive others to take action in times of need. Earlier this month, digital word of mouth played a key role in the more than $5 million raised for the Red Cross’s relief work in Haiti within a 24-hour period.

“Social Media and the Haiti Disaster” – a New York Times SMW New York event – will focus on the role of social media by news organizations, relief groups, search and rescue teams and people around the world during and in the aftermath of the earthquake.

Which trends do you think will be discussed at Social Media Week in New York and elsewhere? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.