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Recapping Social Media Tools

To recap, MySpace allowed users to amend their profiles via HTML to showcase their personalities. Facebook made it easier by making standard applications that all users could bring into the Facebook ecosystem. Twitter developed on the concept, making third-party application development core to its business. When Twitter launched as a social network, it had limited resources. To make it successful, it had to get other people to innovate on its behalf. Twitter encouraged developers to build applications on top of its infrastructure. This implied that individuals and organizations could access most of Twitter's features without actually going on to Twitter.com. It's like controlling a remote controlled toy car. You can provide all the instructions to the car through a device without physically touching the car.

Until recently, only 20% of the users interacted with Twitter through its .com site. The others used innovative applications, like TweetDeck, TwitPic, and TwitterCounter, to update their profile, add friends, and perform other functions (see Figure 1.3). Twitter has opened the eyes of many to a new way of working.

Figure 1.3

Figure 1.3 Users can interact with Twitter's data in various ways.

Twitter made an important discovery along the way: the value of interaction online goes beyond the website; developing ways to interact with peers and customers indirectly is equally powerful, if not more. This concept isn't new; for instance, how often do you go to your favorite soft drink's factory to buy a can? Probably never; countless stores near your house resell the can, and you choose to buy from them instead. You learn about soft drinks on the television, radio, and other media, but you purchase mainly from resellers. Third-party developers building applications for Twitter are like resellers, packaging the product in an easy-to-consume format. Chapter 2 discusses this in detail.

The tools mentioned in this section are the movers and shakers of the social media industry. They are important for recruitment and HR because they can help you re-innovate your business by using them internally. All the above come under the new way of doing things, enabling you to interact with platforms by accessing their data on your website or building applications inside these networks for your audience.

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