February 28, 2014
How Social Media Has Changed the Dynamics of Marketing
The introduction of new media, specifically social media, has changed the world of marketing and how business professionals communicate with and market to consumers. Consumers are no longer passive, and there is a new expectation of quick gratification when it comes to searching, finding, and having information. Traditional methods of marketing (print, tv, radio, etc.), although not irrelevant, are no longer enough. The game has changed and marketers have had to adapt to the new way people are now communicating, connecting, and consuming information.
One of the most noticeable changes is that marketing has become much more “conversational” in nature. Social media has enabled people to have a voice and a chance to be heard as much or as little as they want. This is why it has become important for advertisers to change the way they view their customer base. With traditional ways of advertising seeming to come across as impersonal, it has become almost essential for a company to draw closer to its core audience through open discussion, media sharing and relationship nurturing.
Social media is a great tool to do just that and can be used as a powerful advertising platform. If used correctly, utilization of social networks can get information out to the masses in a far more effective manner than traditional advertising methods, and has provided a way for marketers to reach potentially huge audiences, build and grow brand awareness. Now, there is the opportunity for anyone to become a force of influence through the use of new media and establish direct interaction with their customers. The relationship between business and consumer thus has the potential to become an increasingly dynamic interconnection- an active, two-way discussion if you will.
With that, it has been put on marketers to be increasingly more creative with the content and information they share and the manner in which they share it. One aspect of social media marketing is to look for the need, understand it, and strive to meet it. The goal is more about grabbing the user’s attention and keeping it by cultivating a more personal relationship and developing a positive reputation with them. But it takes effort to build and keep your audience. Now marketers have to earn a user’s trust and attention on social networks and hope that their audience will want to engage and enter into a personal connection with the company and its brand.
With the rise of social media and the extent to which it is used in every-day, personal online-interactions, consumers have developed different expectations of businesses when it comes to how they are “treated” from a marketing perspective. A business’s social network account is only as good as its level of attention to the customers. Brands must to be willing to listen as well as talk, which helps to foster the feeling of conversation with the customer base and make the audience feel like they are being heard and acknowledged. Monitoring and responding to conversations is important to a company’s success with their social marketing campaign and can help to strengthen a variety of core business functions. Social media has made it possible for communications between businesses and consumers to be a real-time, direct interaction that can be more responsive, efficient, resourceful and helpful.
In addition, social media has provided a means for marketers and advertisers in general to have more freedom that they ever did before in the way they reach and engage with customers. New forms of content, new metrics, measurement tools and management platforms have made it easier for advertisers to analyze data and monitor the effectiveness of a marketing campaign. This is much more difficult to do with traditional advertising means and is harder to “see” the return on investment.
Here at Borcz+Dixon, we believe that if you aren’t online, you aren’t advertising. An effective social media strategy not only builds brand awareness, but also brings a company closer to its core follower base. The value of utilizing major social media networks is in their ability to intimately connect a company to its audience of current and potential customers. These platforms are customer relationship management tools, and are allowing brands to converse with their audience in a more personal way, which if done right, results is a wider reach and presence online.