Likeonomics and the future of social networks

Likeonomics Introduction


Ever since Facebook introduced it’s little blue ‘like’ button, likeonomics has been a key part of the social network industry, allowing it’s users to rate everyday things. This feature has enabled brands to garner real time appreciation from online communities.
Facebook however isn’t where the ‘like’ button ends, with the likes of Google+,Tumblr and Digg building upon this idea. Don’t believe though that it is just the digital behemoths who are attempting to make a name for themselves in this sector, with a flurry of exciting new social media startups building completely upon the idea of appreciating items online, while removing the deluge of status messages and life events that have begun to overcrowd all our home feeds.
In this post we’ll delve through the looking glass and peer into the world of likeonomics and what these tools can mean to a modern business.

Pinterest
One of the most exciting recent startups has it’s foundation grounded upon the concept of cataloguing the items you appreciate – Pinterest. The site allows you to share the photos and videos which you find on the web and store them in a category of your choosing at the push of a simple “Pin It??? button on your web browser. These categories or ‘Boards’ as the site calls them can then be shared with friends or publicly on the sites main page. However users or ‘Pinners’ as they call themselves can also control privacy selecting which boards they wish to share and whose boards they wish to follow.
Verdict:
Pinterest is a great tool for cataloguing the content you find online, whether it is inspiration for your a room’s decor or a selection of all things purple. Unfortunately it is limited to being nothing more than a selection of mood boards and does allow you to accidentally post items more than once but the community is incredibly friendly and supportive so it’s well worth a look.

Polyvore
Polyvore is a fashion networking site, which uses a similar web browser bookmark to Pinterest but takes it in a different direction. Instead of just creating a never ending collection of items, the site attempts to inspire its users to share their collections. The site enables you to seek items of clothing from around the web before saving them to Polyvore’s extensive library. From there the site allows users to put together perfect outfits and even create searchable style spreads, similar to those found on the pages of the glossy magazines. These spreads can then be easily shared to users personal blogs and other social networking sites.
Verdict:
If you always wanted the program that Cher uses to decide her outfits in the nineties movie Clueless or if you consider yourself the next Gok Wan then Polyvore is an invaluable tool. However at the moment its still clunky and hard to search so be ready to build a collection yourself.  For more information polyvore.com.

Apps
Likeonomics doesn’t just belong to the world of websites, apps for smartphones also have their place and startups such as Jotly have taken the approach of liking an item to another extreme, literally allowing a user to rate anything and everything they can think of, from the mundane to the bizarre, often with quite abstract and amusing results, just check out the video below.
Verdict:
Jotly is an interesting app which although fun to use at first may not demand many return visits beyond its first few uses. However it does have potential and it would be great to see it grow over the next 12 months. For more information visit Jotly online


Another app, Path, has already been dubbed as the Facebook killer of 2012 and takes likeonomics to the opposite extreme of Jotly. The app aims to stay pure and focus completely upon the status updates and life events that the larger social media sites were originally built on. In a world where social sites are getting more feature packed, it will be interesting to see where this clean and beautiful User Interface (UI) can go.
Verdict:
There is no denying that Path is a beautiful and well built application, its feature set is strong, but it can be hard to use initially. Some users will applaud its lack of features, others will soon miss them, but it’s worth a download, especially if you are falling out of love with Facebook.  For more information visit path.com

Conclusion
With 2012 set to see the topic of Likeonomics continue to grow, it will be interesting to see how the older giants of social media such as Facebook & Tumblr will respond to the threat of the new independents.