The use of social media platforms and websites for promoting a product or service is social media marketing. Although the terms e-marketing and digital marketing are still dominant in academia, for both practitioners and researchers, social media marketing is becoming more popular. Most social media platforms have integrated data analytics tools that allow businesses to track ad campaign progress, success, and engagement. Through social media marketing, companies address a range of stakeholders, including current and potential clients, current and potential employees, journalists, bloggers, and the general public.
Consumers can interact directly with social channels. This interaction may be more personal for users than traditional outbound marketing and advertising methods. Social networking sites act as a mouthpiece or, more precisely, as a mouthpiece. The ability of the Internet to reach billions across the globe has given a powerful voice and far reach to online word of mouth. The ability of a growing number of consumers to quickly change buying patterns and product or service acquisition and activity is defined as a network of influence.
Social networking sites and blogs allow followers to “retweet” or “repost” comments on a product being promoted by others, which occurs quite frequently on some social media sites. The user’s connections can see the message by repeating the message, thus reaching more people. Because the product information is being put out there and is being repeated, the product/company will receive more traffic.
Websites for social networking are based on building online virtual communities that allow consumers to express their online needs, desires, and values. Then social media marketing connects these consumers and audiences to companies that share the same needs, desires, and values. Businesses can keep in touch with individual followers through social networking sites. This personal interaction can give followers and potential customers a sense of loyalty. In addition, products can reach a very narrow target audience by choosing who to follow on these sites.
There is also much information on social networking sites about which products and services prospective customers might be interested in. Marketers can detect buying signals such as content shared by people and questions posted online through the use of new semantic analysis technologies. An understanding of buying signals can help salespeople target relevant prospects and marketers run micro-targeted campaigns.
In 2014, over 80% of business executives identified social media as an integral part of their business. Business retailers have seen 133% increases in their revenues from social media marketing.
More than three billion people in the world are active on the Internet. Over the years, the Internet has continually gained more and more users, jumping from 738 million in 2000 all the way to 3.2 billion in 2015. Roughly 81 percent of the current population in the United States has some type of social media profile that they engage with frequently. Mobile phone usage is beneficial for social media marketing because of their web browsing capabilities which allow individuals immediate access to social networking sites. Mobile phones have altered the path-to-purchase process by allowing consumers to easily obtain pricing and product information in real-time.
They have also allowed companies to constantly remind and update their followers. Many companies are now putting QR (Quick Response) codes along with products for individuals to access the company website or online services with their smartphones. Retailers use QR codes to facilitate consumer interaction with brands by linking the code to brand websites, promotions, product information, and any other mobile-enabled content. In addition, Real-time bidding use in the mobile advertising industry is high and rising due to its value for on-the-go web browsing.
With 5.7 billion people worldwide using them, mobile devices have become increasingly popular. This has played a role in the way consumers interact with media and has many additional implications for TV ratings, advertising, mobile trade, and more. Mobile media consumption such as mobile audio streaming or mobile video is on the rise–more than 100 million users are expected to access video content online via mobile device in the United States. Mobile video revenue consists of downloads, ads and subscriptions for pay-per-view. As of 2013, Internet user penetration for mobile phones worldwide was 73.4 percent.