If you have not yet heard of Social Media Marketing, I think you may need to get out a little more often. Web 2.0 is now “old hat” – this is the latest and greatest “buzz” (like it or not!). So exactly what is Social Media Marketing? To quote folks contributing to Wikipedia:
Social media marketing is an engagement with online communities to generate exposure, opportunity and sales. The number-one advantage is generating exposure for the business, followed by increasing traffic and building new business partnerships.
Basically the bottom line is – using social media sites (like Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Twitter, et.al.) as a networking opportunity. It’s a way to let folks out there on the World Wide Web know about you and your business. Participating in the social media discussions can help get others talking about your business – which if you do it right could become “viral”.
Viral marketing and viral advertising refer to marketing techniques that use preexisting social networks to produce increases in brand awareness or to achieve other marketing objectives (such as product sales) through self-replicating viral processes, analogous to the spread of pathological and computer viruses. It can be word-of-mouth delivered or enhanced by the network effects of the Internet.
Gotta love buzzwords!! (Or not, but love ’em or hate ’em, we’re always going to have ’em!).
Whether you’re promoting a business, a brand, or just yourself, social media is *the* place to network these days. Meeting other like-minded people online can be a great boon to your business. Perhaps you’re a graphic design firm and you end up meeting some folks or another business with web development skills and you form a mutual agreement to share clients or work on larger projects together that require both of your skill sets – that alone can be extremely valuable. And if you end up getting a few more people to visit your site and buy your stuff (products and/or services), that can’t hurt the bottom line either.
So what are you waiting for? Go sign up at some social media sites and start networking!