"We are not living through a technology revolution. We are living through a value revolution that is being driven by the inexorable march of innovation," professes Alcatel-Lucent.
Indeed, social communication has evolved significantly. In the past two decades, technical devices have brought more collaboration, social interaction, personalization, active participation and communication itself than ever before.
The stage of Internet evolution known as Web 2.0 is having an effect not only on societies and communities but also on businesses and established business models. The Web is no longer a passive environment; it is one in which people actively contribute via Internet portals, such as blogs, social networks and virtual lives.
People's communication behaviors are clearly changing by way of collaboration, social interaction, personalization, active participation and communication through technical devices. Considering the global online advertising market is expected to double in size from 2008 to 2012, providers of Web 2.0-based services will need to develop new advertising models based on users' behaviors and willingness to buy.
Further, the broadband market is growing rapidly. The number of subscribers doubled from 2003 to 2007 and is likely to double again between 2008 and 2012, rising to 600 million. Likewise, the growing ability of ISPs and service providers in general to understand their customers in much more detail provides the ability to understand customer habits and behaviors and classify their users into very specific marketing/opportunity segments.
As for where the monetizing opportunities will come in the next five years, the following areas are likely to dominate: advertising - which will become much more personal and engaging - data mining, from which it will be possible to derive real-time insights into people's behaviors and thus target services and adverts; network capacity building; enterprise 2.0 growth; and Web 2.0 going mobile.
So what does this all mean? Every Internet user leaves a footprint whenever they go online. The challenge for service providers and content providers is to mine this data and make use of it, and to do so in a publically acceptable way. Mobile Internet use will become a key driver of this trend and technological revolution will remain the main enabler of changes in communication behavior over the next five years and the years to follow.
For more information on monetizing Web 2.0, read Alcatel-Lucent's whitepaper.