Social Media Marketing As a Marketing Strategy
Social media marketing can be defined as the use of various social networking platforms and sites to advertise a product or service offered by a company. Although the terms e-commerce and virtual marketing are increasingly dominant in academic circles, social network marketing has been gaining popularity among researchers and practitioners alike.
Social networks are websites where users congregate and share information. These sites typically have profiles with which users can interact, like blogs and online communities. Most social networks also provide a forum for users to post comments, posts, and links to their business and personal profiles, along with other information.
The use of social network marketing has expanded to include offline advertising. Businesses often buy ad space on local news websites and blog sites. Local businesses can use a link on these pages to advertise their products.
Business owners who use social network marketing to market their products may also purchase advertisement space on online business websites. The content of such websites may feature information about local services and products offered by a company, as well as links to online advertisements.
Other businesses use the social networking websites as marketing tools. For example, some companies use blogs as a way of providing company updates and promoting new products. Others use social networking sites to provide contact information, such as a company’s website, for potential customers.
Many online marketing firms and search engines use the social network to help them determine the best keywords to use when ranking websites. Social networking websites, like Twitter, are also used for social marketing. For example, if a company offers a special offer, a promotion, or news related item, it can place it on its website in the form of a status update. Other websites and online marketers can then share the status update on Twitter.
One of the most promising areas of interest in social media is in helping people create profiles on popular networking websites. Some experts believe that in five to ten years people will be able to create accounts on more than one social networking site. This would allow individuals to interact on multiple social sites, such as Facebook and MySpace, and make contacts that could potentially be loyal customers.
With the growth in the popularity of social networks, many people are using social networks as tools for marketing. However, this type of marketing will not necessarily lead to increased sales and profit. Social media is still new to many consumers, and many are reluctant to sign up for social networks because they do not know what type of content will be displayed on their profile.
While many of these new forms of marketing have helped people establish an online presence, many consumers are concerned about privacy. Some websites require that people provide their name, email address, and phone number, but others are less intrusive and allow only basic information. Most websites only require that people provide a profile with the necessary information and leave it at that.
Social media marketing companies use various techniques, including advertisements on websites, search engine optimization and sponsored reviews to reach potential customers. In some cases, businesses use social networking sites as a means of informing customers of discounts and specials on their products.
These online marketers usually charge fees, which can vary widely. However, online marketing firms charge only for the time they spend on customer services and not on the costs of creating the sites.
Since many people use the Internet to communicate, online marketers are finding social media marketing an effective method of marketing. The only drawback to this type of marketing is the fact that most people still use their phones as their primary means of communication.