Social Networking Sites: Time Suck or Killer Marketing Tool?

Posted on Dec 2 2013 - 6:00am by Fayaz

The article is authored by Hameedudin from Alliance School of Business and is the first prize winner of  December article writing contest conducted by Marketing Bloggers

Gone are the days when marketing was done through door to door, through advertisements in newspapers and magazine or through promotions etc. With the invention of internet they can now get not only good but better results.

In the present scenario, social media marketing is done not only for clothes and products but also for movies and music. Earlier companies to advertise their product had to give ads in newspapers and magazines which sometimes go beyond their budget, but now with the use of internet marketing this has become very economical and assessable as now the companies can make their own site and can publish and update their required information regularly. Therefore, majority of the companies now days have moved their promotion and advertising techniques from newspapers, hoardings and magazines to internet marketing also because it is difficult to assess the impact of direct sales for your business where as with online marketing all this can be done very easily.

Why such marketing reached great heights in a short span? According to me, the only reason is that it takes only a fraction of time to reach to the people than advertising through newspapers and magazines. It has also been found out that marketing through such sites can reach a far greater crowd based on interest, within millions of people using internet, thus all this results in more demand for the product and services and also gives positive results than another source of marketing.

Internet has fundamentally changed the way people find, discover, share, connect and shop. More than one third of the world’s population is there on internet. It has been rightly said, *Go inbound or go home*.

According to the survey conducted,

People who skip TV ads 86%
Decline in tech trade show spending 46%
Direct mail never opened 44%


It has also been surveyed that people conduct 131B searches on the web;

PER MINUTE —————— 29, 00,000

PER HOUR ——————— 175,000,000

PER DAY ———————— 4,000,000,000

Let us take US as an example, which is one of the developed economies in the world also prefers internet marketing through social sites as the major marketing tool. It has been found out that US internet users spend more than 3 times more minutes on blogs and face booking.

AVERAGE BUDGET SPENDS ON COMPANY BLOGS AND SOCIAL MEDIA HAS TRIPLED IN THREE YEARS:-

While social media is not the silver bullet that some pundits claim it to be, it is an extremely important and relatively low cost touch point that has a direct impact on sales and positive word of mouth. The social media in US has increased by 356% since 2006.
People share, read and generally engage more with any type of content when it’s surfaced through friends and people they know and trust.

It has been rightly said that,
SOCIAL MEDIA ISN’T JUST ABOUT BIG NETWORKS LIKE FACEBOOK AND MYSPACE, IT’S ABOUT BRANDS HAVING CONVERSATIONS.

BENEFITS OF USING SOCIAL MEDIA:-

 

Benefits

In the few years since the growing impact of social media sites like Face book, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube, their importance as a marketing tool for product and service businesses has grown extensively. A new study reveals just how important these social networking sites have become these days.

Inbound marketing don’t generate leads, they generate revenue: –

Benefits 2

According to the article which was recently published “Emerging Trends in B-to-B Social Media Marketing: Insights from the Field,” social media is now seen as the most important and pervasive marketing tool. The study also reports that some 93 percent of B2B marketers are engaged in social media marketing now days. Study respondents favoured LinkedIn, with 26 percent calling the site the “most important social channel.” Close behind was Face book, with 20 percent of respondents favouring it, and blogging, with 19 percent! Customer communities with 14% and YouTube with 7% rounded out the top five.

B2B COMPANIES THAT BLOG GENERATE 67% MORE LEADS PER MONTH THAN THOSE WHO DONOT

Benefits of SMM

 

 

MARKETERS USE SOCIAL MEDIA TO INCREASE THEIR LEAD GENERATION

Social Media benefits

Social networking sites have a major impact on the way customers and businesses find each other. Many search engines like Google and Bing also use social networking information to help refine their search results and anticipate future search behaviour for their site. Google has recently unveiled its “+1 Button,” a feature which is similar to Face book’s “Like” button, that allows users to single out companies, web pages, and postings they like, or search results that proved to be particularly helpful for the users. With the +1 Button is being used 2.3 billion times a day, exploding its introduction on net. Meanwhile, Google’s newest service, Google Plus, is now used by an estimated 25 million people around the world.

THE WORLD IS BECOMING MORE SOCIAL
AVG HOURS/WEEK SPENT ON THE ONLINE ACTIVITIES WORLDWIDE


Despite a plethora of social networks sites being launched every other month, Face book continues to be the number one Marketing Tool for small businesses. It has also been surveyed as many as 70 percent small businesses use Face book to promote their business – up from 50 percent a year ago.

Have you ever noticed how the ads and links presented to you on your Face book page change when you type in a new status update? At that time you realize how powerful this site is to introducing businesses and products to customers who might never have found them otherwise.

By monitoring tweets on Twitter we can yield valuable information about the customers’ likes, dislikes, and even complaints about your products and services. A number of media reports have surfaced about not so satisfied customers who lodged their complaints on twitter after the usual customer-service avenues had failed, and got what they wanted as a result.

So, how can a product company expand its social media presence? In short, by getting the word out and keeping it up to date. One can develop a complete company profile for social media sites like LinkedIn including various videos, blogs, and links related to sites about your company. Wherever possible, companies customize their profiles or pages to tie their social networking profile to their brand and image. Dedicating resources – employees, a contractor, or just a block of time is helpful in maintaining all of their social networking sites and profiles, and developing new content on a regular basis. One of the best advantages of this is that one can get as much feedback as you can from employees and customers about the look and feel of your social networking material.

Even when a complain tweeted on tweeter, for a company’s product or service that is resolved at earliest as the world is watching. Most of the jobs are posted on LinkedIn rather than advertisement on Newspaper. It is better for both customers as well as company. A company can have free sample of millions of people without any cost involved. There can be lot of cost cutting as online forums do not have cost incurred. It is the cheapest and most decent forum one can get for marketing. One can also target specific customers who are likely to be target audience. Online market survey through Google spread sheet and face book has been very common now. Mailers have also been major source of advertising. It seems to be more effective for the reason that the customer can relook the advertisement. It is human tendency that more you look at the same thing you tent to remember it. Also it becomes easy to get connected to the target audience. One can also post videos, as visuals catch more attention.

Apart from leveraging your personal relationship with your clients, internet marketing is the best tool for advertisement one can use. If you have a regular updated website with well-written content that maintains people’s interest it shows the people how your business is different from others and how you can offer the best deal to your clients.

Today’s consumer before buying a product or services wants to compare the reviews of their friends and families, if there is proper quality linkable information available, that is what people is looking for, you can convert your users into paying clients very easily.

As the popularity and importance of social networking is growing, product businesses are realizing all the ways these sites can be used to find customers and take the pulse of the marketplace. It’s important for all of us that we should devote time to keep up with this fast-changing medium.

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About the Author

Fayaz is the founder of Marketing Bloggers. Apart from the jibber-jabber he is Human by birth, Engineer by mistake, Marketer by Choice.. That says it all :)

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