Social Media Marketing is a way of publishing and gaining online traction by pulling interest in based on specific actions such as: sharing, liking, writing, or announcing information. These publishing tools are changing our modern world, the age of large publishers and expensive distribution is passed. With this new age businesses and individuals are able to garner the attention of their target audience simply by sharing, or actively writing about relevant information. It used to be that publishers determined what was relevant and worthwhile for the public and businesses to view. Now the people perform an automatic Quality Check on all content that comes across their screens. This quality check is facilitated by likes, dislikes, tweets, new connections etc…

Social media is made up of a set of different websites, which provide a network of interactions among people allowing for the creation, sharing, and exchanging of information and ideas in virtual communities and networks. Andreas Kaplan a famous professor of Marketing at ESCP Europe Business School defines social media as “a group of Internet-based applications that

Social Media Marketing

build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0 and that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content.” Furthermore, social media depends on mobile and web-based technologies to create highly interactive platforms through which individuals and communities share, co-create, discuss, and modify user-generated content.

Social media marketing is the process of gaining traffic, or attention through social media sites. This has become a powerful medium with which to broadcast your message to targeted audiences so many businesses have made social media a strategy to their marketing. Common Platforms include:

  • Delicious
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Foursquare
  • Google+
  • Twitter
  • YouTube
  • Social Search Engine

Each social media site has to offer something different e.g. Twitter is a social site designed to let people share short messages or “updates” with others. Facebook, in contrast is a full-blown social networking site that allows for sharing updates, photos, joining events and a variety of other activities.

Companies can  spread their message to their targeted audience and social media is also now giving those companies huge visibility into the search engines through the newest algorithms like the Panda Algorithm from Google.

Social media marketing professionals create content that attract attention and encourage individuals to share with their social networks. Thus, a compelling message has the potential to go viral and get spread from one user to millions of users in the blink of an eye.

For example, one of the most widespread social networking message was #beatcancer, posted 209,771 times on Twitter by different individuals within 24 hours of its first appearance on 17 October 2009. It was the cancer awareness message of a cancer fund-raising event – which went on to raise over $70,000 over the 24 – hour period.