Social Media – Hype OR Hope?
By Tashmeet Kaur, Business Development Executive, Innity
Mark Zuckerberg once quoted “If Facebook were a country, it would be the 8th most populated in the world, just ahead of Japan”. In the digital industry, much hype has been created over social media. Companies and brands are incorporating different platforms and experimenting with various strategies to win consumers over.
So what exactly is social media? Social media signifies economical tools that are used to combine technology and social interaction with the use of words. These tools are typically internet or mobile based such as – Facebook is utilized to promote content, run contests so as to provide an element of engagement for users. Twitter offers conversational freedom and viral marketing for just about anyone (Lake 2010).
One may ask; is there hope for social media? Absolutely. Social Media has the power to influence consumer’s perceptions such as their buying decisions and brand loyalty. Marketers make use of social media to personalize their brands to spread a message in a conversational manner. However this has to be done with much concern for long-term growth.
One such example; The National Wildlife Federation – a non profit organization devoted to conservation; has formed individual channels, communities and accounts to connect with its unique audience. Users may connect with the Federation via Twitter or Facebook (Sniderman 2010).
Would social media have a tough road ahead? Certainly! Many businesses are exploring social media to cater to the buzz; but few will get it right. In order to keep up with the impetus and attention, one needs for it to be successful. Thus a natural reaction to the following would be to abandon social media as businesses and enterprises are keen on immediate payoffs.
One may question, how do we employ social media successfully? Some techniques may include delivering consistent and quality content that should be aligned with a particular objective as well as building rapport by ensuring that communication is a two way street.
Social media is extremely diversified and can be applied in numerous ways which may best suit the interests and needs of an organization. The challenge then is for organizations to determine how to apply decisions and innovation so one may invest in the right social media technology. What do you think?
- Sniderman, Z, ‘Top 5 Enterprises Using Social Media’, viewed 21st November 2010, < http://mashable.com/2010/10/05/top-enterprises-social-media/ >
- Falls, J, ‘The Future Of Social Media’, viewed 21st November 2010, < http://www.socialmediaexplorer.com/2008/08/29/the-future-of-social-media-hope-or-hype/ >
- Lake, L, ‘Understanding The Role Of Social Media In Marketing’, viewed 22nd November 2010 <http://marketing.about.com/od/strategytutorials/a/socialmediamktg.htm>