I think we can all agree that social media — for those of us that use it — has had a pretty substantial impact on our day-to-day operations. We tweet, update, and blog our lives away in an effort to appeal to friends, or attract new ones.
Whether you’re using Facebook, Twitter or blogs, social media very much emphasizes self-indulgence and narcissism. It’s intended to be a playground for people to broadcast themselves.
But the real value of social media doesn’t lie in the self. It lies in what the tweets, status updates and opinions of several hundred selves means for the community as a whole. So, then, what is the real value of social media?
In some cases, it helps us predict the future.
Researches have long been perplexed by all forms of social media, unable to find ways to tap into the relatively new resource.
That is, until researches found a way to utilize it in order to predict the future.
Researchers Sitarum Asur and Bernardo Huberman wrote an essay entitled “Predicting the Future With Social Media,” in which they evaluated the impact that social media had on box office numbers for many big-budget movies. What they discovered was that they could predict the box office success of particular movies often with extreme accuracy based on how often the movie was tweeted about prior to its release.
Investment companies, too, have been utilizing the power of Twitter to help predict future outcomes. Some companies, including Derwent Capital Markets, plan to utilize Twitter to help optimize their portfolios, relying on the accuracy of Twitter analytics to help determine what and what not to invest in.
Right now, it’s an aspect of social media analysis that is very much in its infancy. Even so, that initial research has begun to reveal the true power of Twitter and other social media.
Who knows, before long, we might be turning to Twitter to predict the future of marital relationships, or even wars. Scary? Sure, but at least in that case, we should have a few days notice.
Source: MSM DesignZ, Inc. is a Westchester social media company based in NY specializing in advertising, web and graphic design, and SEO.