More and more sophisticated analytical tools are coming out to unlock the true potential of social media with regards to marketing. Some claimed that they had done so. While others are still on the look-up. Quantifying the effectiveness of social media marketing paradigm remains elusive in reference to ROI (Return of Investments). Hence, the exodus towards embracing this new technological advancement by companies of all sorts still continues in big numbers. So it’s interesting to discuss what social media marketing is really made of. The four essential components that I’ll try to present is really nothing new except try to give deeper insights.
Social Media Marketing is a byproduct brought about by the rising popularity of social media through its social networking sites like Facebook, Google+ etc. It is a modern day marketing program design to grab attentions and attracts web traffics using the platforms of social media sites. The concept encourages social interactions in a two way communication channel which rely on the word of mouth rather than paid adverts (news feed, tweets). Marketers have varied ways to promote their products using the tools integrated with the networking sites: Video, podcast, SMS and other on an outright real time engagement.
4 Essential Parts of Social Media Marketing
1. The Targeted Market
As early in the planning stage, social media strategists should already have ideas the marketable segment of the market where the products should be aim. In corporate world this has to be back-up by feasibility studies either through market research, survey and polls, house to house interviews and other means to generally get the pulse of the buying public.
For individual marketers we conduct keyword research, listen to ‘noise’ in the net, ride along with trends, be keen on people interests etc. And from there we can deduce the target segment we’ll be working on. We then create a website specific on the information we gathered.
After clearly identifying target market, marketers can now focus their efforts on market segmentation. This practice is usually done by big corporations. Individual website owners can also employ this process only with lesser data in hand. But it is a good practice to apply market segmentation procedure to actually see the disperse of your market target.
Market segmentation is usually compose of the following descriptions
a. geographic – location and address specific either local, regional or global
b. demographic - gender, age, income, occupation, education, household size, and stage in the family life cycle
c. psychographic - similar attitudes, values, and lifestyles
d. behavioral - occasions, degree of loyalty
e. product-related - relationship to a product
2. Method To Use To Reach Your Audience
Keep on mind a social media campaign needs to reach out as far as possible. The second part involve your choice of method to use:
a. by blogging
b. strong utilization of social networking sites
c. audio and video creation
d. all/mixture of the above methods
This third component of social media marketing campaign is a distinguishable or identifying mark which can represent in various form as either name, sign, symbol, color combination or slogan. Brand is basically the personality of your product, service or company which set apart from competitors. Effect of proper branding can result in higher sales of not only one product, but on other products associated with that brand. It creates a symbolic construct on the minds of the consumers consisting of all the information and expectations associated with a product, service or the company(ies) providing them.
Nike – a check mark
Lacoste – a crocodile
Coca – Cola – uses a name
4. Supportive Actions
This now involves further innovative ideas to strengthen the hold on the market if the campaigns is smoothly sailing along. Or delicately apply major/minor adjustments if something has gone wrong. Marketers should constantly be aware of the analytic data that are coming in from the feedback of the consumers.