I’m struggling with the idea of too much segmentation here. There is segmentation and niche markets… and then there’s REALLY segmentation and niche markets. How will we know when we’ve gone too far? Is Twitter really already the next sliced bread in that, even though so new, it’s becoming such a part of our everyday life that now we can make different brands of Twitter? Twitter for the Fashionistas, Twitter for the sports players, Twitter for Mommies….
My sense of social media and the internet is that it’s a long, overdue swingback from corporations controlling the market to consumers controlling the market. For too long, the big corporation without the human face has been setting the rules. Now, its our turn. Except that it’s been so long since we, the consumers, have had a say in anything and had someone listen, that I think we’re going to push it as far as we can until we find… you guessed it. The tipping point. The thing that is going to make that pendulum swing back yet again in the direction of the corporation after they have gotten tired of all of this hullaballoo from the consumer. It’s a continual balance of power that may never be truly in check…
I’ve taken myself a little bit off the beaten path there from my original thought. The one where we already have Twitter knockoffs and what that has to do with segmentation and the web. And how much it goes against the grain of social media. Social media is about uniting. It is about conversing. And with so much uniting and conversing, there also comes a lot of noise. The cafe shaped conversation in such a big arena is hard to hear and focus on. Trying to find people shouting in the masses about anything is hard to do… only the hundred plus people around him will hear, maybe a handful will take notice. But those that like what he is saying will move closer, the 100 closest people will soon be people who want to hear what he is saying, be it for a cause… or for shoes.
If Twitter was just one big room with a bunch of people shouting at the top of their lungs, yes, please do make me a quiet place to talk to my girlfriends about how my bright red purse doesn’t match my green top and black and pink jacket today (it actually happened). But Twitter isn’t just one big room. I think people who want to talk about fashion on Twitter will do that. And that they will follow other people on Twitter talking about fashion. I don’t really see the need for a whole other copycat to show up unless it was as an umbrella profiling already existing Twitter users who talk about fashion. Maybe a page that aggregates all tweets relating to specific brands or topics… who’s spent the most for their Prada purse; that all major names (Louis Vuitton, Gucci, etc.) actually put their stuff on sale in July in Europe (at least in Nice); do I wear the little black dress or the little red dress to make my ex jealous tonight? That would be a smart way to segment Twitter. You show me a page I can visit at any time to see conversations happening around a topic of my choice and you’ve got yourself a happy customer (the ‘save search’ feature over on Twitblogs is a step in the right direction). You show me yet another site I’d have to sign up for, find more people talking about topics within topics within topics that I still have to search through to find more users and I’ll tell you you’ve gone too far.