Social Media Marketing: An overview
It’s the billion dollar question: How can brands turn the social networking phenomenon into sales? Kipp takes a look at the opportunities and threats of social media marketing.
November 2, 2010 3:33 by Eva Fernandes
Virtues of Social Media Marketing:
The virtues of social media marketing are perhaps best presented by SocialMediaMarketting.com, which says “the true power of social media comes from the ability to create a community around your company and create digital conversations with your customers and clients.” As such, the website explains that social media allows a company to actively engage with their consumers in ways which traditional forms of PR do not allow. Instead of generating a generic press release (that most likely will get printed verbatim in a series of local papers) a company can start a blog that publishes meaningful and purposeful posts that members of the community can connect with. Or can form a following in a way that an advertisement is unlikely too.
The findings of the 2010 Social Media Marketing Industry Report by Social Media Examiner are promising: they found that 81 percent of companies agreed that social media helped generate exposure for their business and 51 percent said it was actively responsible for new business partnerships. And social media can help a company know, not only more about their consumers, but also their competitors and other companies. The survey found that 47 percent of people were influenced by social media sites to purchase specific companies’ services & brands.
No doubt, done right, social media is effective. In fact The Guinness Book of World Records achiever, Evian’s Roller Babies – the most viewed online ad – was distributed through social media. The ad, which features CGI babies break dancing, received more than 54,000 comments and tweets, as well as more than 60 million views.
Though the numbers suggest that social media marketing is on the rise, some experts are less optimistic about the its power. Andy Sernovitz, founder of the Social Media Business Council and author of the book Word of Mouth Marketing says, ‘’Social media is a great tool. I’m a huge user and fan, but it only applies to the online half of word of mouth. Even if you look at the online half, there are probably more recommendations happening by email than Twitter or all the other social media put together.’’