The recent publicity surrounding the much-heralded launch of Google+ has highlighted the importance of social media at the moment. We are becoming increasingly liable to live our lives in a virtual world, to a greater or lesser extent, and many far-sighted marketing specialists have been quick to see the potential of this sea change.
There are more than two billion users of the web now, a number that is on the increase as every day passes, and a significant proportion of them are regular visitors to social media sites. The trend shows no sign of abating, either, with more interaction likely to be occurring in the coming years.
Everyone has their own reasons for heading to social media sites, of course, but the most popular is a simple desire to interact with friends and family members from the comfort of a computer screen. They are also able to speak with and listen to members who have similar interests, such as fellow fans of a particular band or people who play the same video games.
The truth is that social groups on these sites cover just about any subject, and the list is constantly expanding. From fans of the Twilight movies to Preston North End supporters and from Ford Anglia owners to people who like to show off their tattoos, it’s easy to see how the interactive nature of the genre is proving so popular.
By understanding more about the nature of social media sites, the world of commerce can reach specifically targeted audiences in a matter of minutes. The more forward-thinking specialists in this field are already using sites such as Facebook and Twitter to aim marketing campaigns at groups of people who have previously expressed an interest in a particular subject.
To use an example, imagine you own a company that supplies top quality motorcycle spare parts at affordable prices. You have a very niche market, but your advertising budget is not large enough to provide TV and radio-based campaigns, and in any case this type of marketing will have something of a scatter-gun effect and will generally prove to be a waste of money.
Instead, you engage a social media marketing specialist to obtain the names of people who are already interested in motorcycles, such as those who belong to online fan groups and members of clubs, as well as those who perhaps like to collect photos of bikes and who subscribe to online magazines.
By doing this, the marketer can place ads on specific pages which are more likely to be read by the target audience, thereby tailoring a strategy that will have the most effect. It’s highly sophisticated, and experts from companies such as E consultancy regularly report the impressive successes of these campaigns. As an added advantage, this form of marketing is far less expensive than using the television.