Whether or not your company is currently using a social media marketing campaign (and I sincerely hope you are) it can still fall victim to one.
Social media is sweeping across the globe, empowering anyone with a keyboard and internet connection and a micro-blogging platform with enough viral power to lay waste to years of careful marketing strategy. Don’t take my word for it, ask Nestle which saw a huge stock price drop after some users started a wave of anti-Nestle sentiment online.
What matters most is not just having a presence in social media, but tracking and understanding how that presence can be leveraged to your company’s benefit. It is not a game of hit-or-miss, there is real science at play here and the big winners are the people who know how to make it work in their favor.
A posting in a blog can derail a very well laid out marketing plan. Even internationally, well known brands such as Nestle or United Airlines have suffered immensely against the combined might of users in the Social Media; their recent PR disasters cost them sales, steep drop in stock prices, etc.
Social Media’s most popular platforms are technologies such as blogs, micro-blogs, forums, review rating sites, news aggregators, wikis, RSS feeds, etc. Reportedly they connect more than 60% of the online audience in India and are growing at a bubonic pace.
The most important aspect of the Social Media is the viral effect and the booming mobile phones market, especially smart phones, has only accentuated it. Social Media poses both immense opportunities and challenges. It has rightly emerged as a force to reckon with and spans the entire marketing process: identifying needs, creating products, promoting, branding, measuring customer satisfaction, managing public relations, etc.
The viral impact of Social Media can make or break a firm. Social Media has challenged conventional marketing techniques. Earlier, marketers had the privilege of ‘I-talk-you-listen’ mode. Now, with the advent of Social Media, consumers are talking and firms that do not listen are quickly way-laid. So the new mantra is ‘engage the consumers’.
Managing Social Media also calls for a set of very different marketing techniques. The growing influence is forcing organisations to hire Social Media specialists. These specialists are expected to garner insights by monitoring, set relevant marketing objectives, create campaigns to meet those objectives, measure responses and tweak campaigns if required.
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