Social media has taken the world by storm in the past 10 years, seen statistically as 99% of people who fall into the 16-24 demographic in the UK said they had used social media within the past week, as well as spending close to an hour daily communicating on it.
Today it is a norm in our daily lives, taking the form of websites such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Snapchat to name just a few. As users, we use the platforms for social interaction, research, knowledge and sharing our lives. Subconsciously however we are subject to advertisements without even realising, and thus social media becomes a huge play field for businesses to compete on. Through social media aspects such as the hashtag businesses can generate a lot of marketing and advertisements for relatively nothing.
It is common nowadays to turn to Instagram to research restaurant menu’s look at their food from their customers view point, this can easily be achieved by the restaurant by encouraging diners to share their meals on social media and tagging them in it via hashtag, it spreads the message of the restaurant by virtual word of mouth, which travels further and faster than normal word of mouth could possible do.
In addition to this another advantage to businesses are social media celebrities, those who are verified or have just gained a huge following can be used to promote businesses messages to their fans and followers. This tactic again enables the business to reach further than they could have imagined. It causes adverts to go from local to global in a matter of seconds, encouraged by a positive trustworthy individual.
The same principle can be applied with the platforms themselves with Facebook alone having 40 million users, using it as a digital marketing tool stretches the reach of the advert internationally. In this sense, it is not only good for transnational organisations who wish to post a global advertisement but also for smaller business who want to use social media to expand and grow their business.
Social customer relationship marketing is another powerful business tool as when the business establishes a social media page, they can use data analysis to reveal information. This can include, demographics, time of day most users see and or interact with the post, the traffic your bringing to your page compared to competitors, deals competitors have on and how users are interacting with them.
Organisations can use this information to fuel their own marketing campaign as such if most users are interacting with posts at 7pm on a Wednesday, the business knows then to target this time to get maximum effect for their campaign. Therefore in a relatively cheap way businesses can see what is working best for them and how to be most effective in the digital marketing they put out on social media.