While Facebook’s acquisition had a lot to do with Instagram’s growth, the reality is that new social media leaders are now emerging in a matter of months, not years. So what does 2013 hold for the social media landscape? Here’s a look into the crystal ball.

1. Pheed

The pay-as-you-go social network. Why share your gorgeous photos, funny videos and brilliant observations with the world for free on Facebook and Twitter, when you can sell them? That’s the logic behind Pheed, a social network launched in October 2012. It gives users — currently mainly celebrities, musicians and entertainment types — the option of monetizing their “pheeds.” For a monthly subscription fee, ranging from $1.99 to $34.99, “pheeders” can offer subscribers access to a media-rich stream of text, photo, audio, video and even live broadcasts. Stars like Miley Cyrus and Paris Hilton are already on board.

2. Thumb

Personal crowdsourcing. Say you have no idea what shirt to match with your new jeans. Snap a photo, upload to Thumb and crowdsource the decision. Simple questions typically generate hundreds of thumbs up or thumbs down, plus comments, from the network’s very active user base, sometimes within minutes. Appealing to the twin social impulses of vanity and voyeurism, Thumb generates serious engagement among users.

3. Medium

The invitation-only social network. Social networks have dramatically lowered the bar for sharing information with people around the globe. But has the bar slipped too low? That’s the question posed by Medium, a new, invitation-only network from the creator of Twitter. In an attempt to wean us off of cat photos, Gangnam Style and Justin Bieber updates, Medium emphasizes longer form, carefully crafted content from users with something of deeper value to share.

4. Chirpify

Buy with one Tweet. Remember how revolutionary it felt when Amazon introduced 1-Click payments for online shopping? Chirpify takes that concept into the social media era. Sellers offer stuff for sale on Twitter or Instagram (T-shirts, concert tickets, new albums, whatever). You reply with the word “buy” and it’s yours. No credit card. No “proceed to checkout” or “add to cart.” The entire transaction is conducted through your Twitter account.

5. Flayvr

Bringing order to photosharing. Smartphones have made it ridiculously easy to take photos and video, but gorgeous shots from last week can end up lost deep inside the camera roll. Flayvr may be the most intuitive and aesthetically pleasing of a wave of new social apps bringing law and order to your collection. Photos and videos are automatically organized into eye-catching albums based on date, complete with location and even titles sucked in from your iPhone calendar. With a tap, you can share the album as a splashy HTML5 webpage via social networks or email.

6. Chirp

Sharing using sound. For sheer “wow” factor, Chirp may take the prize in 2013. Say you want to instantly share a photo or link with a roomful of people. There are plenty of options out there, but they all have drawbacks. Networks like Instagram or Facebook are members-only.

7. Conversations

Social networking for companies. A tool that brings social networking into the office. Instead of getting lost in long email chains, team members collaborate in real-time by posting on message boards, Facebook-style. Anyone can be invited to join a conversation, enabling customer support teams to rally around issues, marketing teams to coordinate campaigns, etc.

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