What is next in the digital channel

After reading Steve Rubel’s post about the End of the Destination Web Era and The Cut and Paste Web and Anthony Power’s post about Destination Free Web, what is the future of the web? Portals had their run in the early days, hell, people still use them everything in once place that the portal thinks is important, and to some that is fine. Search engines made their mark, and all they really do is act as a travel agent. I tell them somewhere I think I want to “go” and they provide options. Social networks are relatively “new” and have risen exponentially in popularity. No longer are they strictly for the kids and college crowd. I even have friends that don’t use email and rarely use SMS, they just use Facebook as a communication platform.

So with all that, what is next and how can marketers adapt and continue to drive sales?

The Internet is changing how we consume media. I now read a lot less of a lot more. Sometimes I can barely follow a stream on Tweetdeck as so many people update during business hours or chat sessions like #journchat. Consumers are adopting these channels faster than most companies can comprehend. 

Will there be a “super social network” where everyone is involved? Can Facebook become that network? Does monetization matter and will advertising work in such an environment. An average individual visits over 100 domains a month, will this continue to rise as the dissemination of content increases or will the consumer pull back, start taking content and feeds from preferred sites and build their own site that brings them everything they need? RSS feeds, Twitter feeds and Facebook can provide a lot.

I believe we will continue to see the number of domains increase, and the amount of time on each decrease. People don’t have time to waste on the web and they have been trained like Pavlov’s dogs, if it’s not there, look somewhere else.

Marketers must realize this and provide valuable content in an engaging matter. It’s still relatively early. Marketers can even go one step further and provide content from competitors and other sites on their site, we all research products online and wouldn’t we all like to see competitive products compared so we can make informed decisions. Price is NOT everything.

It’s not going to happen overnight, but the digital marketing landscape is going to change even more and marketers must evolve with it, rather than trying to fight it.

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