Ok ESPs, inbox providers and ISPs, relax. Email is just fine, I just wanted to get your attention, but you should still pay close attention to the question. Here’s an excerpt captured from a recent article I read;
For the first time last month, traffic to social networks overtook traffic to web-based email services in the UK. Top networks Facebook, Bebo and MySpace took 5.17% of all UK Internet visits, with only 4.98% going to email services including Hotmail, Yahoo Mail and Gmail.
If you pay close attention you will see that this took place in the UK, where email already gives way to SMS, but I have to wonder whether we will see a similar trend in the US. If so, then the first question I have to ask is; How will this shift in communication preference influence eMarketers that use email as a primary point of communication?
Another reason this is particularly interesting, to me, is because I previously wrote a post about how social networks started with email. In that article I made mention to the fact that social networks, were a mashup of web 1.0 technologies, that simply faded away in late last century. This, recent, statistical observation reiterates my point, and raise another very big question; are social networks just the evolution of email, or the Texas sized asteriod that will crash into the Planet Email and kill the now pre-historic communication medium? Ok, i’ll admit it’s a bit dramatic, especially considering email is still a baby compared to other forms of communication. Nonetheless, as technology evolves you have to wonder, does the exponential growth rate of technology mean that we will see the product life cycle of internet technologies become shorter? Or does it simply mean that the product evolution cycle will become more and more obvious. I’m not sure, but there is plenty of room to imagine where this is all going. Just something to think about. What do you think?