According to the “State of Media: The Social Media Report 2012″ by Nielson, consumers have increased their time on social media networks by 73 % since last year. But why are consumers using social medias more now than they ever have before? Each social media website provides a different way of connecting with the online world. For those of you who are new to social media, let me give you a quick overview of the top social media networks in the world.
(The image above is basically how I see it)
Twitter: Online social networking and microblogging service that lets users send and read “tweets”, which are text messages limited to 140 characters.
Facebook: Online social network that makes it easy for you to connect and share with your family and friends online.
Foursquare: A free app that helps you and your friends share and save places you visit. It can also give you ideas on what to do next with personalized recommendations and deals based on where you, your friends, and others have been.
Quora: Online collaborative information for sharing and a learning platform.
YouTube: Watch and share originally created videos online. Provides a forum for people to connect, inform, and inspire across the globe and acts as a platform for original content creators and advertisers large and small.
LinkedIn: Build a professional identity online and stay in touch with colleagues and classmates. Discover professional opportunities, business deals and new ventures.
The Coming of Age
It’s pretty clear that social networking is a global phenomenon. With its rapid growth and the meaningful ways that it can let users engage with other people, events and brands that mean more to them now than they ever have.
According to the Harvard Business Review Analytics, 58% of companies are currently using social media networks to engage with their audience, however what makes a good companies social media tactics differ from ones company who isn’t sure how to manage theirs? (For example, Applebee’s over night social media meltdown)
What are the first steps into understanding social media’s core functions: to monitor, respond, amplify and lead consumers behaviors. Then to look for the best ways to take these behaviors and carry them out along the way with the customers decisions.
Thanks to social media networks, companies and organizations are now connected directly to their consumers taking that relationship beyond just a screen to screen connection but to a personable connected as “friends.”
Here are my personal tips when it comes to businesses connecting with their consumers via social media networks:
1. Don’t completely go away from your other marketing tactics: Just because social media may be working doesn’t mean that your company needs to abandon their entire marketing campaign. There will always be consumers who look for your company in other forms of marketing.
2. You need more than just an interesting subject: Even if your product category is naturally interesting, execution is very important. Volume isn’t everything on social media networks, consistent quality is more significant.
3. Show, don’t tell & keep it short: Showing your product or services in different and unique ways is more effective then just talking about what you do.
4. Pay attention to what your consumers are looking for: As a consumer myself, I look for ways that companies that I follow show things to meet that are related to me. It’s things like that which make me come back and check out those companies over and over again, and making sure I get the word out to others about the product. Remember that WOM is pretty darn powerful.
How well are you managing your social media networks?