As this is one of my last posts for 2006, I think it’s worth projecting forward to next year, considering what the biggest areas of Internet advancement will be and what businesses need to think about in order to maximise.
I’d like to pinpoint three things that we should be looking at.
The first is RSS. 2007 will mark a split between people who browse for content and those who choose content to be delivered to them. Every business needs to offer an RSS feed. Newsletters, press releases, special offers, industry news, company news, free giveaways should all be available for people who desire to receive them. Providing feeds not only makes the visitor feel in control but it reduces your workload on building mailing lists. Businesses need to take them as seriously as News sites do.
The second big thing is video on the Net. We’re beginning to see mobile tv and IPTV. Video on demand is a priority for telecoms and media companies. Channel 4 has made less money on advertising this year in the UK than Google. We all know where the consumer’s eyes are going. So what are the best ways to keep our products in front of our audiences? And does the video wave offer us new ways to present our offerings on our own websites and other people’s?
I think Second Life will be the YouTube of 2007. There’s already a huge amount of money and enthusiasm being pumped into the virtual world and businesses, from retailers to radio stations have stamped their brand on this environ. One Chinese entrepreneur has already made a million dollars by buying, developing and selling virtual land. How can you build your profile and convert virtual cash into real revenue next year?
One thing is for sure. The Internet has to be placed closer to the heart of every UK business if they want to grow in 2007.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on what the major Internet trends will be in the coming year. Maybe you disagree about the impact of RSS or the importance of Second Life for businesses? Let me know.