As 2011 comes to a close, there are no shortage of year-end recaps and a host of expert predictions for 2012.

At Total Social Solutions, we believe that if there is a bandwagon to jump on…we want to be on it.  Not only that, we want to be amongst the first ones on it.  

In that spirit, we have a short list of our top three social media predictions for 2012:

Google+ will become a force.  That’s right Mr. Zuckerberg, just when you are about to take Facebook public, Larry Page and his ‘L Team’ in the inner sanctums of Google are focused on you and your three quarters of a billion followers.  Sources inside Google report that two of their top initiatives for 2012 are to focus on social media and mobile computing.  Google’s powerful influence on search cannot be underestimated in this battle for the social landscape.  We predict that Google+ will become a top three social media platform in 2012, will continue to gain market share throughout 2013, and will eventually challenge Facebook for superiority by the beginning of 2014.  On that note….

Facebook’s IPO will be a tempered success.  While some online bloggers are predicting a poor showing for Facebook in their highly anticipated IPO; TSS believes that with three quarters of a billion members, and the business communities reliance on the platform as a marketing tool, this is as close to a can’t miss as you can get.  Our team’s concerns lie in the fact that irrational overexuberance of some in anticipation of this IPO could lead to an overly inflated run-up on the stock following IPO (which is common).  As the valuation and corresponding stock price comes back to reality, people will realize that Mr. Zuckerberg’s vision of Facebook becoming a Dow30 ‘blue chip’ may be a bit unrealistic in this decade.  Speaking of unrealistic expectations…

Deal-a-day sites will continue to lose luster.  The disappointing (and premature) IPO of Groupon marked the official beginning of the end of the ‘deal of the day’ mass coupon business model.  While these platforms have been confused as social media, or social marketing; they are far from it.  User fatigue, business owner trepidation, and investor skepticism in these platforms will lead to the eventual decline of the dozens of entrants who flooded the market.  The recent GiltGroupe purchase of BuyWithMe is another example of the inability of these stand-alone coupon companies to maintain sustainable businesses.  Look for Facebook and Google to challenge for superiority in this space.


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