Well, who hasn’t thought about it yet? Disruption has taken place in a lot of business branches already. TV, music, the entertainment industry, as well as the telephone industry, just to name a few. But what about social media? From several indicators, there hasn’t been any significant disruptive phenomenon within that industry over the past 15 years. Some of you may argue though, that there was, indeed, some sort of evolution in the social media world. I won’t dispute that fact. But what I’m implying is that the most important pillars of the industry have basically stayed the same since its origins. We have seen some new players entering the market, such as Snapchat or Instagram, which apps can be described as complementary in terms of functionality and user experience, rather than a radical revolution in the usage of social media in a disruptive fashion; not to mention that Instagram eventually has been purchased by the industry leader, Facebook. Of course, there was innovation within that particular sector, but as we know, innovation is not disruption. In order to understand what disruption really is about, we need to understand the terminology itself.
What is disruption?
When an innovative idea is birthed, considering the history of human kind, there isn’t a guaranty that it will be adopted straight away. Some inventions require several stages of evolution before they reach their marketable status and that means that many inventions vanish due to the competitive nature of the free market. If you look at the length of time it takes before a disruptive idea gains acceptance by users, a common pattern is apparent. Disruptors do not change the market overnight; it may take several years to establish and make a name for themselves.
A critical factor in disruption is importance. A disruption should first have a huge and sustainable impact on the way people make use of technology. Let’s take Netflix into perspective. A major disruption of television, it is forcing cable companies to change their way to do business. By providing on-demand content, creating compelling original programs, using user data to better serve customers and letting customers consume content in the way that they prefer, it has radically changed the way consumers watch TV for good. In times past, film productions could only be viewed on television. This narrative has been disrupted to a considerable degree, thanks to Netflix, whose success has posed remarkable threat to the entrenched TV industry. Many consumers have already cut the cord from existing cable, as the cost of a Netflix subscription is about 20% or less of most cable package offerings.
Another vital part of disruption is range. Disruptive approaches and innovations should cover a wide range of application dimensions that are available to its target audience. This is because user experience also determines the true test of an innovation’s disruptiveness.
Last but not least, it’s all about timing. Timing is one of the most crucial, if not the driving factor that determines the success of disruptive innovations. An immediate effect on users is inevitable in order to be talking about disruption. It must change people’s habits in a sustainable manner. I like to quote Mr. Henry Ford here “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”
Having established the features of disruption, let’s focus on the reason why disruption in social media has not happened yet.
What prevents disruption within the social media industry?
One of the biggest factors impeding disruption in the social media industry is the power of existing players. Let’s take Facebook for example. As soon as a potential competitor enters the market and shows the potential of endangering its market position, Facebook simply buys the company. Facebook is, evidently the biggest influencer in the social media world. They have over 2 billion accounts registered today, which is a huge number if you think about it. An average user of Facebook is satisfied and comfortable. As a result, many new platforms who think they are disrupting the ecosystem are simply churning out parallel innovations as those that have already been put in place by Facebook. This inadvertently influences the scope and function of their innovations, limiting how far they can go to truly deliver a real disruption. Correspondingly, a company must try something totally different in order to even think about challenging the social media giant. Time has shown that Facebook has mastered the art of introducing hooks that keeps their massive user base in a loop. It consistently improves the experience of its user base with new and innovative features within the platform, such as the introduction of the timeline or stories. It is worthy of note that whenever they release updates like these, which is considered innovative, it is almost predictable that the likes of Twitter and Instagram tends to follow suit.
Nevertheless, it’s a matter of when, not if, something highly innovative is going to happen within the social media industry that is going to change its use for good.
Potential disruption launch points within social media are:
Before the advent of iPhone, social media was mainly accessed on desktop devices. That has changed dramatically. Mobile devices have created a shift in the way people use social media, creating a plethora of new app functionalities and capabilities to be online round the clock, interacting with friends from all over the globe in real time. If we go by the predictions of experts within the industry, VR and AR are considered to be the next big thing in social media. For instance, Pokémon Go showed how massive the potential is and revealed that our society is ready for the merging of the digital world and reality.
Wearables are also a potentially disruptive technology that may change the social media market. The new apple watch series showed glimpses of what to expect in the near future. It could very well be that some applications are constantly running in the background and are decreasing the number of interfaces needed in order to create engagement.
Giants like Google and Facebook will still be relevant in the future. Using Google as an example, it is obvious that those kind of players tend to think big and aggressively penetrate new markets. Google launched its own browser, got into the mail business and they even are creating own cars nowadays. It is more than thinkable, that Facebook will go down the same path sooner than we think.
However, a new platform with a strong endorsement could also question our established social media standards. The newness, or uniqueness of a potential new competitor would allow it to quickly establish itself and spread like most innovative ideas, giving it an advantage in the timing department. Here’s where “betbox” comes into play. In the following few sentences I will outline what the disruptive character of betbox is all about and how it may change the social media world forever.
What is betbox?
Betbox is a social betting platform for real-world use cases, disrupting a multi-billion dollar market of the gambling industry and social media. It renders blockchain technology in order to provide a secure and transparent asset storage, to enable a fair and flawless distribution process and tries to pave the way to a new age of social media. Well, you guys must be thinking, blockchain, betting and social media, wait what? That’s exactly what betbox tries to combine with its use case.
What makes us think that betbox has the power and uniqueness in order to qualify for a disruption in the social media industry?
The decentralized application for mobile and desktop is enabling users to compete against each other, set up challenges or simply take part in events. In addition to the social aspects, betbox enables users to play raffles, jackpot games and many more priceless features governed by a distributed private blockchain. Let’s take the traditional social media feed for instance. Betbox reshapes the use of feeds, transforming fleeting posts and updates into a melting point of high-spirited interactions. Still a feed, yes, but its purpose is totally different. Users have the chance to engage through their feed with other users in a never seen before fashion. It’s all about daring, challenging and betting. On one hand, betbox creates the opportunity to create a bet and motivate fellow peers to bet on the newly created event. It can go from a simple six pack challenge to crazy challenges such as a Mount Everest ascent. On the other hand, the feed creates a new way of social engagement. Users can monetize each other’s content in a private or public setting. The feed is algorithmically developed and recognizes user patterns in order to tailor its content to user needs and preferences. It lets users customize what they want to see, e.g.- hottest bets, most viral post or other preferences. Betbox brings a monetized gamification aspect to social media. When you post something, and instead of just sharing it with your community, with betbox you’ll be able to earn a dollar or more with every single post.
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