Social Media Marketing has become one of the most effective marketing tools today.
The notion that social media is only for young people is no longer true. In fact, the biggest driver in today’s social media growth today is due to users over the age of 55 on their smartphones.
But what is social media marketing?
To start, “social media” itself is a rather catch-all term for sites ranging from Facebook to Twitter to Four Square, as well as blogging and e-marketing (email marketing). Social Media is content-driven. For example, you may have a wealth of information on your website, but are people seeing it? Through social media you can “push” that information out to users and potential clients without them even realizing it’s being “pushed.”
And to take it one step farther, Social Media Marketing takes various social media mediums – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. – and utilizes them to best serve a business’ or brand’s marketing goals.
Also, there is a key difference between social media marketing and other marketing platforms: Social Media is earned media, not paid media (i.e., print ads, radio, television commercials). Social Media, on a broad scope, is a form of opt-in media, with the goal being to get users to “opt-in” to your advertising message(s), albeit subtle.
And finally, some illuminating quotes on “social media marketing.” Indeed, the name is deceiving. The goal is to “market” without the consumer actually knowing you’re marketing:
“Engage rather than sell … Work as a co-creator, not a marketer.” -Tom H. C. Anderson
“Social media is not a media. The key is to listen, engage, and build relationships.” – David Alston