Making Sense of Social Graphs
Posted by Grach
The Importance of the Social Graph.
Social graphs can come in all different shapes and sizes but this is dependant on the information and identity of the person in question. A social graph is the digital mapping of a person’s characteristics. First coined by Mark Zuckerberg the CEO of the social networking site Facebook, the social graph can be used in many different ways, uses mainly for marketing and business purposes. It is a very useful way for businesses to connect with you. First started with Facebook then moved to other platforms, such as Twitter, Flickr and Google, social graphs can be built up with different information and connections which in turn overlap. Social graphs are very useful way of improving the accuracy of networks and find out information that works to the advantages of businesses such as marketing and advertising agencies, which need this information to help target the audiences of their products or brands.
A social graph can tell a story of a personal identity in three simple sections. First focussing on context, nodes then finally sharing. Social networking is all about content, who you associate with, can tell someone a lot about you. Your content does not only tell you about who you are, but also who you are not. What interests you but also what does not. Associations with other personal social graphs can be helpful in a way of being discovered but the distinctions that can help you pull away from that crowd and show your true identity. So the more in your social graph the more information can be defined around you. The social graph is a set out as a mapping system of connections (kind of like a spider diagram) and these connections are seen as dots called nodes. These nodes are points on the map that help users and businesses “navigate” and find exactly the content they are looking for their business. Finally sharing this content through nodes can then be communicated and exchanged throughout the web within a community, which in turn connects others and creates more nodes.
But how does one increase their social graph? The more information and content being entered into the web the larger your social graph becomes. The more technology being integrated into the web the more your graph grows of social data.
“The person is more likely to choose you if you’re recently engaged in conversation that keeps your social graph fresh and relevant”.- Jeff Korhan
The only downsides to social graphs are the issues of logging into so many different social networks, which can become confusing and duplicate information, which can be inaccurate. The more social networks we join the harder to collect accurate results. Another issue with social graphs are the conflict of interest and privacy issues. The idea of so much information being accessed over the web can seem a little unnerving and unfortunately businesses do not care about this information being private, they only care about how that information could improve and inform their businesses through the data collected.