Social networks and the need to communicate are universal human conditions. A general assumption is that communication technologies help to increase and strengthen social ties and is a great marketing tool as well. The Internet provides many social networking opportunities
How do social networking sites affect individuals?
Should commercial enterprises get involved with it?
Anticipated reciprocity – person provides valuable information to others in the expectation that will get helpful information in return
Increased recognition – important for people who want to be known as having particular expertise
Sense of efficacy - people may contribute because they feel that by doing so they are able to make a difference, have some kind of effect
Communion – people are fairly social beings and by commenting on a blog post or the like, it encourages others to reply to them, creating social interaction
Over the last few years social media has become the fastest growing phenomenon on the Internet. What started out as a simple share information with friends tool, is quickly taking over as the place for businesses to communicate with the world.
Reach out to your target audience in an innovative and original way. Perfect platform that allows you to
Make friends and reconnect with old friends
Create a niche for your products and services and attract warm prospects to your site
Market and brand you products and service in an explicit manner either by blogs, social communities and so on
Generate, interest and even attract new potential customers and clients by exposing them to your products and services online.
Interact and engage your prospects in a one-on-one environment
Social media's popularity and use has impacted brand marketing in at least three ways,
consumers review products,
relate customer experiences,
and interact with brands.
In six steps:
1. You offer a product or service
2. Someone uses it
3. They like or dislike it
4. They post a message about it
5. Others see the message and comment, sharing their experiences
6. Word spreads …
They say that what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. But, as one newspaper columnist recently wrote, the same can definitely not be said of social networking sites. What happens on Facebook or MySpace often does not stay there.
A few headlines offer a picture of the kinds of things that are happening …
A young mother in the UK signed up with a social networking site as a way to share family photos and news with friends. She didn’t realize that her profile was available to anyone within a three million-member London network. Her photos and personal information wound up being posted to a sex website.
A judge was apparently appalled when he was presented with photos of a young man charged in a serious drunk driving crash enjoying a Halloween party in a prisoner’s uniform labelled “Jail Bird.” The prosecutor used the photos – taken from a social networking site – to portray the U.S. college student as unrepentant. It didn’t help the young man’s case that the photo was taken while a woman seriously injured in the crash was still recovering in hospital. He was sentenced to two years in prison.
A first-year computer engineering student faced disciplinary action after officials at Toronto’s Ryerson University discovered he’d been running a study group on a social networking site.
Oxford University administrators have also logged onto social networking sites in search of evidence to discipline students for over-exuberant partying.
Expanding Market Research
Opportunity to widen circle of contacts
Reaches out selected groups and target personally
Improve reputation with as little advertising as possible
The only cost is the time and effort to maintain the network.
Employees spend time updating their profile and sites throughout the day
Viruses and malware
Hackers are attracted with social networking sites
Used to document school research
Promote artistic talents and experiment with other forms of content creation
Get constructive feedback
Publicizing private instant messages
Posting threatening messages
Posting photos that will cause embarassment
A greater danger is that teens may become targets of pedophiles. The anonymity of some social networking sites makes it easy for unscrupulous people to target young tees and engage them in harmful conversations it is easy for predators to pose as teens and lure children into harmful real word contact as well. Most social networking sites have privacy controls in place but teens seldom use them active monitoring of profiles and behaviours catches some predators, but not all of them
Social networking sites are:
Fun and Easy to Use
Offer an easy way to connect and meet new people
Open new avenues for reaching out and building relationships
You can reach people all over the world with a few keystrokes
Keep in mind that the main goal of social networking is meeting new people, building relationships and generating traffic for your business. Once you understand the right way to use social networking sites, generating traffic to your business will be a snap.
Social networking is a new phenomenon. We are still trying to understand the new societal rules of the road in this new world. This is an issue that is not going to go away.
Why is online communication appealing? Why do people go online and talk to each other instead of doing something else, like cooking or watching television or skiing?