12seconds: The Next Big Thing in Social Media?

Micro-blogging was undoubtedly the hot social media trend of 2009, with Twitter achieving phenomenal growth of nearly 1400% year-on-year at one point. Such was the impact of the ubiquitous Twitter that other micro-blogging platforms such as Jaiku and Tumblr hardly got a mention. So where does micro-blogging go from here?

I’m going to stick my neck out and predict that 12seconds will be the next big thing to hit micro-blogging and social media in general at some stage during 2010. Launched back in Spring 2009, still in beta testing mode and yet to really catch on, 12seconds is essentially Twitter in video form. Users can record short, 12 second ‘status update’ video blogs with their webcam or mobile to share what they’re doing, where they are and what they’re thinking. They can also then share these videos on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Tumblr, blogs or anywhere else for that matter using an automatic sharing mechanism or an embedding function. And as 12seconds records, stores and streams videos, there’s no need to store large files on a PC.

So why do I think 12seconds will be the next big thing? First, people like the personalisation that video provides – it’s more engaging than a 140 character tweet. And second, we’re living in a video-streaming world where people already watch YouTube and can record and upload video on their smartphones. So it really seems to make sense that multimedia micro-blogging will take off at some stage.

But is there a business use for 12seconds? I’d argue that once it enters the public consciousness (and having just launched an iPhone app that might not be too long) there absolutely will be a business use. Many companies, Cirkle included, are building Twitter feeds and Flickr slideshows into their new websites, as well as embedding YouTube videos. So the ability to embed short, personalised video snippets into a website, either as a stream or as an independent clips will provide SMBs with a way to show off corporate personality.

Besides which, what else can you do in 12 seconds? Answers on a postcard please. Or leave a comment below…

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