In 2012, Facebook tweaked its algorithm, turned down the reach, and turned up its push for paid ads. We found ourselves screaming “Damn you Zuckerburgggggggg!,” more often than not. Like any tool used correctly, Facebook ads are effective. Best advice for FB ads: Less is more. Be smart. Do your research, Zuckerberg be damned.

We can’t wait for the new MySpace. Justin Timberlake & Co. purchased the social media grandaddy, and are attempting to reinvent it by catering to a hip/hipster audience of bohemian 30-somethings. Only problem: It’s late! It’s got more buzz in social circles than a Kimye baby bump at a sorority rush party. We waited months to get our invites, finally receiving access to the beta site just recently. It looks pretty sweet. But one has to wonder: Will the wait for the new MySpace be justified? To quote Robin Gibb: “No … no it won’t.”

Google Plus is the best-kept secret in social SEO. G+ is a haven for wonks,
geeks and businesses if they know what’s good for them. Retailers and restaurants, especially, should know that 2013 ain’t nuttin’ but a G+ Thang, bay-beh.

Twitter should stay strong in 2013, but will diversify. Like all social sites, expect it to tweak its algorithm and start bombarding you with opportunities to advertise. Resistance may be futile, but stay resolute — Twitter is still the most social, social-media site. Who to watch: Justin Bieber. The king of “selfies” will continue his public self-reflection. We’re still amazed at his 35 million followers. Honestly: Do you know anyone that follows him?

Pinterest. The leader in visual content. Well, maybe. Instagram is expected to see an 89 percent increase in 2013 — the LARGEST among major social networks. Hopefully this increase will involve #fewer #hashtagged #photos. Rumor has it that Pinterest is going to gang up with a sporting goods/outdoors store and run a campaign that will attract men like a Kate Upton Google search. Best advice: Unless you’re a visually oriented business, steer clear of the Big P.

Aside from running legal Facebook contests (which almost no one truly does) analytics are still the biggest obstacle to overcome for most “socialites” in 2013. Expect the Facebooks, Twitters and Pinterests of the world to introduce suped-up analytics offerings native to their site/helping show ROI.

Mindbenders’ buzz-worthy apps

Tout: Replace a 140-character post with a 15-second video.
SnapChat: Real-time picture-chatting.
InstaCollage: Instagram, but with more borders, filter options, texts, and background color.
Tappr: Milwaukee start-up has 11 bars added to its local app. We love the idea of buying a beer for the lady at the end of the bar … with our iPhone.
Overgram: Add text captions to photos and pictures for Instagram.
RetailMeNot: A coupon go-to when shopping at Target, online or in-store.

Happy socializing in 2013!

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