,It has been a while since I last posted. I have spent much of that time working on my research but also on develiping a Niche Social Media Platform for angling… But why? This blog is inspired by this article and my recent launch of Fishamo (a social network for anglers). Before I start, however, I think I should write a few brief notes about what Fishamo is. Fishamo is exactly what it says on the tin, it is a social network for anglers. A place where anglers get together to talk about fishing, share photos, anecdotes, tips and ideas. It is nothing more. There is no facility to share your latest catch or requirement to geotag your favourite fishing spots, no analysis of the weather and fishing conditions in various exotic locations around the world…It is simply a place, online, to talk about fishing… So, when there are so many other places to talk about fishing, what’s the point?
Facebook, Twitter and, other large-scale social media platforms, we have all be taught to believe are the magic elixir. They are the places where EVERYONE gathers to talk about EVERYTHING right? And, for a while this was true, but can you see the issue with this? The reason why I decided to capitalise the two keywords? If you are a marketer, do you want to reach everyone who is talking about everything? Or do you want to reach customers who are talking about, or interested at least, in your products?
Ahhh, I can hear you all argue already! The big platforms track users interest, right? They target my adds only at those users who have expressed an interest in my kind of products don’t they? Well, yes… but what if I was passionate about angling for a day and then quit? I might have marked an interest, even enough to be spotted by fancy algorithms, but I am never going to be your customer. Why? well, because I’m not that interested anymore, and I never was that much in the first place. Oh, but what about retargeting right? That works doesn’t it? Again, yeah it does but Take a look at this data from InSkin Media whose consumer survey found that the two main responses to a retargeted ad were annoyance and anger.
Sponsorship is perceived more positively by users who are interested in a specific subject matter or key interest.
Niche Social media…
Turns out that big-name social platforms might be reaching the end of their usefulness for highly targeted niche markets like angling. This means that niche social media is about to have it’s day. This was pointed out by Godfrey Parkin recently and eloquently illustrated in the below graphic which illustrates the timeline that large-scale (general) social media has gone through!
Parkin concludes that users will ultimately come to see large-scale social media as abusers of personal information and privacy. They will turn to niche social platforms which are founded on trust and shared interest and that advertisers will come to realise that their money is better spent elsewhere.
Not ALL doom and gloom!
Don’t go dropping your Facebook presence yet though. AS an niche social media project, Fishamo started as a small project on Facebook. Customers CAN still be targeted to some extent through large platforms. However, the future lies, I believe (along with some pretty good company), in the hands of niche social platforms that aim to offer nothing more than a sense of community.
Fishamo is built on the premise that angling is a worthwhile activity, offering multiple benefits to participants. More than this, I believe that talking about the activity is a key way that many anglers participate in their interest. A social platform dedicated to angling, which frees itself of the need to add unlimited fancy, unnecessary bells and whistles has long been needed in angling and Fishamo fills that gap. Fishamo’s key feature is conversation between anglers. Community is the single most powerful feature that social media can offer. I strongly believe that, as more anglers and, more importantly, companies that supply the angling community support the platform Fishamo will emerge as a leader and potential saviour of the dwindling angling population across the UK and the world.