What is social media marketing?
Social media has become an essential part of netizens. Brands and companies use social media marketing for brand awareness and to drive traffic for sales.
Consumers are more likely to try products and services recommended or already tested by their friends and family members. Peer pressure on social media influences the buying decision of the people.
Therefore, nowadays, social media pages work like brand outlets. They have dedicated social media managers to manage accounts and respond to user queries. Sometimes, they outsource marketing to social media influencers.
The well-known social media platforms used for digital marketing are Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Quora, etc. Let’s not forget that social media websites have a significant chunk of internet users.
The user base and their buying intent are the ultimate power of these social tools. One of the most crucial social selling hubs is Pinterest. Brands are making full use of Pinterest marketing strategies to drive traffic and sales.
Some brands directly partner with these platforms for ad promotion and paid campaigns. Brands pay money for displaying their ads/content on these platforms.
The reports from We Are Social and Hootsuite finds that more than half of the world's population is online. The number of internet users in 2018 is 4.021 billion, social media users are 3.196 billion, and mobile phone users are 5.135 billion.
Internet penetrations are low in Africa and South Asia, but these regions are witnessing the fastest growth. According to the report of Statista, with 460 million internet users, India is the second-largest online market after China.
The above data show the power of social media marketing.
There are unlimited benefits of being active on social media platforms. The presence in social media platforms tells search engines that you are an honest and genuine business.
Sharing on social media gives a strong signal to search engines that you have valuable content that social media users are reading. So shares of your content on social media are taken as a vote of confidence by search engines. Social signal is one of the most critical factors to determine the web page rank.
But just opening accounts on social media platforms is not enough, the qualitative engagement with users is the key to infuse trust among them by answering their queries and providing helpful information in real-time.
Brands maintain a dedicated social media support team for promotion and driving sales.
The emergence of social media influencers has changed the trend of marketing.
A social media influencer is a blogger or writer who has expertise in his/her area and knows the various aspects of the products and services. They have a significant influence on buying decisions of the customers.
Consumers look at posts by peers on social media to know more about products and services. They now rely more on feedback given by social media friends and peers.
So, before making any buying decision, people look at various posts written by bloggers, product reviews, and ratings.
Many companies in the same niche of influencers are collaborating with them to endorse products and services. People trust more on influencers because of their knowledge. Influencers have already got a large audience. Therefore brands collaborate with them to endorse products.
The conversion rate is also reasonable. The social media brand ambassadors are not too expensive like traditional celebrities.
Nowadays, micro-influencers are also getting more attention because of the high conversion rate. Brands look for micro-influencers because they are more actively engaged with the audience and less costly than big influencers.
The social media listening tools help in finding what people say about your products and services. Using these tools, brands can set a list of keywords for which they would get alerts. It also allows knowing what people are talking about your competitors.
By analyzing such inputs from various channels, brands can brainstorm and make a new marketing or business improvement strategy.
The role of hashtags is immense in social media. These tags represent a unique kind of information or post where users with similar interests or likes can share information or knowledge. All data related to a particular hashtag is stored in a repository.
Companies are aggressively employing hashtags to promote their brands.
For example, if a consumer buys a product by using a hashtag, he can post his experience with the product or use the product and share images of the products. The other social media users can dig or search into such hashtags, get ideas about the items, and make up their minds to buy.
It is seen that visual data has more impact on users or consumers. Social media contains data like texts, pictures, infographics, and short videos.
The videos impact customers because it explains the products and services better in the shortest time. Promoting products and services through short and crisp attractive videos with good sound and music can engage many people.
Many short videos are created by the companies and are shared on the YouTube platform. This sharing has a domino effect because many people share them, and this way, the product can influence many people over the social networks.
There are many tools like messaging app, meeting hosting apps, and chatbots that can effectively make solid and long-lasting relations with people.
Companies devise many posts according to the need of the different types of customers for deeper engagement.
Social media has made a hassle-free environment where people themselves can share their problems, experiences, and opinions. They can talk to each other and can get answers to their queries from the company’s staff.
Such fruitful engagement increases the trust and transparency about the brands and works as a feedback mechanism for incorporating the changes.
Social media presence is crucial for small businesses, and such engagement can work as a game-changer for small business owners.
They can effectively engage with people and explain their products and services to the people. They can directly build an emotional relationship with customers.
The endorsement by social media people can further increase sales and work as a panacea for brand promotion. Many small business owners are getting benefits from social media across the world.
In such a way, the small owners don’t need to invest much money in their brand promotion. So with careful planning and execution, they can increase their profit and also get international exposure.