The Future of Sharing #smwsharing

A summary of the panel discussion on 'The Future of Sharing' hosted by Beyond at the Design Council on Feb 16th as part of London Social Media Week.


  1. Participants:

    Gordon MacMillan, Social Media Editor, Brand Republic Group, Haymarket Media @gordonmacmillan (Moderator)
    Trevor Johnson, Strategy & Planning, Facebook @uktrevor
    Allister Frost, Marketing Manager, Microsoft UK @allisterf
    Ash Choudhury, Head of Digital Marketing UK, Nokia
    Mark Jones
    , Financial Communities Editor, Reuters @markjones 

  2. Beyond has commissioned a survey of more than 2000 social media users in the US and UK to assess the key trends in 'sharing'. The 'Future of Sharing' panel debate was loosely structured around the questions asked in the survey. 

  3. Is frictionless sharing here to stay?

  4. What the survey said: "Some 67% of social media users have allowed an app to post to their profile, listened to a song that was automatically shared to their profile, or read an article that was automatically shared to their profile."

    Background: when Facebook launched frictionless sharing last July it prompted controversy. Two good pieces set out the arguments: readwriteweb (pros and cons) and O'Reilly Radar (pro). 
  5. Is grouping your friends and selectively sharing content (i.e. the Google+ model) the way of the future or is this too difficult to maintain?

  6. What the Survey said: Only 40% of survey respondents had created sub-groups. But 62% said the concept appealed to them, suggesting it will become more popular.
  7. What does sharing mean for marketing tactics?

  8. What the survey said: People are more willing to share content if there are incentives. Some 60% of social media users say they would opt to post about a product or service if they were offered a discount or deal.
  9. Background: American Express's 'Link, Like, Love' programme was identified as a good way in which social sharing could generate solid business benefits.
  10. How will sharing change? 

  11. What the survey said: Respondents are looking to share more personal milestones in what may herald a return to the more personal content of early social networking activity. But sharing activity peaks within six months of going onto Facebook -- sharing may be about to plateau.