What Is The Second Internet?

By on April 26, 2011

When you think of the internet of yesteryear, you think of emails, spam, computer threats, tacky websites and hard sales pitches. The internet of today however, is incredibly different. The second internet, as it has been named, is the social internet, the client-orientated internet. Welcome to the real relevance of social media and what it means for your business in the future.

Social media has transformed the internet from top to bottom. People are sharing ideas at lightning fast speeds, and innovation is sprouting from the most unlikely of sources. If you think you’ve lived though the age of invention, think again. Right now, as you read this, the world has never been more connected. And as you know, when people get together to share information – progress and evolution happens.

The Rise of The Second Internet

All that hype you’ve been reading about businesses becoming overnight successes is real. It’s happening because we are in the throes of the beginning of something. Experts judge that the second internet came to life in 2009. That’s two years ago! The dot com revolution that made people billionaires, is now happening in social media.

If you’ve ever denied the importance of social media, it’s time to sit up and take notice. History repeats itself. In ten years, the media will be speaking about the social media revolution that changed the world. About all the people that made extraordinary amounts of money, because they had the foresight to recognize the innovation early.

We are living in a time of massive growth and expansion. Start-ups are becoming Fortune 500 businesses in 2 years. Power is shifting from traditional news outlets to platforms like the humble blog. There has never been a time in human history, where you can build more authority and success, without having to be one of the chosen few in power.

Core Traits of The Social Internet

All of those traits you’ve been hearing about for years make up the core functionality of the second internet. It’s a lot more interactive – making it easier to share, and easier to get into trouble. For businesses, it’s centered around the consumer, their needs, their personalities, what we can do for them. The buyers market. Suddenly, there’s more choice, which makes everything a lot more competitive.

And if you’ve been noticing – the second internet is enhancing real-life experiences. It’s already grown too big to be contained solely online anymore. Businesses are building communities, and branding their offline marketing materials with social media icons. Foursquare is making the simple act of getting a cup of coffee a significant experience, with benefits beyond the coffee itself. Engagement, connections and interaction are driving the way forward for all businesses.

The only thing to do, as a business owner, is to come up with innovation of your own. Get involved in groups, communities and fanbases – learn how you can use this wave of productivity, growth and success to further your own business. You have access to enormous potential. Will you be one of the few that takes advantage of the second internet? Or will you, like so many others, remain content to watch it happen and do nothing? Join the conversation!

How are you using the social internet to build your business? Let us know!

About John Souza

John Souza is founder and chief strategist of SMMU and Social Media Impact, and is a bestselling business author. He won the 2011 Tech Marketing Awards ‘Social Media Marketer of the Year’ and most recently the About.com Reader’s Choice Award for Best Online Education Site. John has appeared on The Michael Gerber Show, and his business has been honored at the Mashable Awards, Forbes Business Awards and The Stevie Awards.
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