Social Media Marketing: An Introduction
Social Media Marketing: An Introduction
Social media are various interactive technologies which enable the generation or sharing, exchange or creation of ideas, interests, opinions, and other types of expression through social networks and online communities. These communities can be defined as online discussion platforms where users can easily interact with each other based on common interests, ideas and concerns. There is an increasing trend of using social media for marketing, business promotion, advertising campaigns, and PR purposes.
Blogging is a popular form of social media users communicating and sharing their ideas and thoughts with each other. This is also called blogging, characterized by the posting of blogs in the internet, either in specific websites owned by the user or on the user’s own blog site. Examples of blogging include news-making topics or news-related items, personal blogging, or just sharing thoughts and views on specific subjects.
Social networking is another popular way to engage a specific audience. It is characterized by the sharing or creation of online communities based on common interests, hobbies, views, or even political views. With social networking, the users can share videos, photos, or other multimedia materials with like-minded individuals. The users can also make comments on these materials and engage in discussions on the same topic. Such actions give a significant boost to the popularity and visibility of a particular brand or website. On the other hand, social media users who engage in discussion are also seen as influential and credible sources of information by the target audiences, giving them more influence in terms of influencing the audience buying behavior.
SMILT is the acronym for Social Media Marketing. It is a set of online tools and techniques used for marketing a business by social media users. SMILT strategies involve a combination of five elements, including building relationships, driving traffic, optimizing content, monitoring social networks, and engaging customers or viewers. SMILT makes use of the five main aspects of social marketing, which are building relationships through blogs, video blogging, forums, Twitter, and Facebook; driving traffic to websites; optimizing content for search engines and readers; and monitoring social networks for new developments. SMILT strategies may further include SMO, where websites feature guest posts from company or industry experts; SEO, where search engines are directed towards the particular site’s page instead of across entire internet; and Ads and Affiliate Programs, through which advertisers pay for having ads displayed on a particular social networking site.
Furthermore, SMILT requires effective methods for engaging target audiences. The most popular and highly effective ways to do so are through surveys, asking quora questions, writing blogs and articles, and engaging audiences in discussions. Social media platforms such as FaceBook, MySpace, and YouTube provide great opportunities for marketers to ask questions and get feedback from target audiences.
In a broader sense, SMILT is a strategy that uses the power of the internet and social media platforms to promote a business or brand, in turn increasing the popularity and visibility of the company. SMILT has been quite popular, especially in the UK and US, where it is widely used as a marketing strategy. For example, in the UK, many companies have their own social media pages such as Twitter, which have hundreds of thousands of users. Similarly, in the US, popular social media platform Facebook boasts of over one hundred million monthly active users. The best part about SMILT is that, unlike most traditional forms of marketing, such as direct mail, magazines, television, or even door-to-door marketing, SMILT does not cost much money to implement, as it is mostly free.