What is the real cost of social media?
Social media has emerged as an inimitable medium of communication that not only allows you connect with people worldwide, but also accelerate your public message. It has become a complete world in itself, where in a way people meet, multiply and spread the ‘word’ together. It’s a free space for everyone to fit-in and accept the trends of his kind to participate.
The adoption of web started in early 2000s, while the actual commencement of social media happened around 2003 – 04. It includes some of the renowned social media brands like MySpace and LinkedIn in 2003, Facebook and Flicker in 2004, YouTube in 2005 and Twitter in 2006. Since then, these have been burgeoning continuously and expanding every day.
Up-surging Social Media
Over the years, the continuously aggrandizing social media have begotten a plethora of opportunities for marketers and promoters. These are indeed more result-oriented opportunities for marketers and promoters, because on social media they can spread a word with just a single activity, if customized and strategized efficiently. Moreover, it is a far more cost saving medium as compared to electronic and print media.
It’s not only about chatting and commenting; today, social media is equipped with advanced applications and technologies which facilitate business expansion on social media. There is a profusion of applications and techniques for marketing a business. However, there is still a long avenue to cover for reaching the maturity level of social media marketing.
Social Approach for Media Marketing
Entrepreneurs can efficaciously augment a valuable amount of business with effective social media utilization. But, the graph of personal use of social media compared to its usage for marketing by enterprises still has a colossal difference. Recently, Allied Digital Group (ADG), an award winning digital marketing agency researched upon present state of digital marketing and concluded that the count of active companies on social media in the year 2012 was 51%, which reached about 69% in the year 2013. ADG also concluded that 86% of marketers give high value to social media in digital marketing.
This is also to be notified that the aspect of social media being cost-free to some extent and charging comparatively little then after, is a major factor of its being adopted at such a commendable pace in this economically stressed phase.
Social media marketing doesn’t relate to only creating and managing a brand’s profile on this medium. It is the way a brand communicates and involves its audience in a never-ending customer-brand relationship that may not be active every time for transactions, but will always stay connected with valuable information, interaction and trust.
High Time for Enterprises to be in Social Media
At this time, the ratification of social media and technologies is happening at a high pace. Hence, it is very critical for organizations to invade the competition at this stage or they soon will become imperceptible. Recently, the analytics of ADG concluded that the Indian digital industry will grow with a 33% rate this year and most importantly; this growth rate will continuously increase in the favor of marketers. In its research, ADG found that social media is been widely used by various sectors with variant percentage of usage. It comprises IT with 61%, marketing with 73%, finance with 25%, supply chain with 40% and customer service with 59%.
Although Indian internet users are yet to cross 17% of the country population, but this percentage comprises of nearly 10 times of the Australia’s population. According to IAMAI and IMRB report, India reckoned 200 million internet users by October 2013 and is expected to achieve the mark of 243 million by June 2014. Thus, the probability of digital marketing success will continuously increase. And it is inevitable that social media will share the maximum part of digital marketing.
Strategic Social Media
In the present cutthroat market scenario, when only striving doesn’t produce results, marketing endeavors should be fused with customized strategies to ripe business growth. Indeed, a segment of entrepreneurs have already stepped ahead from just being on social media to infusing high technology, market intelligence and specialized process to social media marketing.
This is also to be notified that as social media demands lesser economic support, it welcomes enormous amount of marketers, which is eventually uplifting the standard of competition quarter to quarter.
“It will be essential to spend on digital media marketing, and there will be a substantial and gradual increase in its amount. This amount will be spent on brand engagement and will be a form of investment to produce revenue from the growing internet,” said Mrs. Deepa Sayal, Co-Founder & Director, Allied Digital Group which has ideated various efficacious and successful campaigns for some of the blue-chip brand “This new era of digital marketing demands integrated marketing strategies. Brand communications requires to be infused with data and real-time insights,” Deepa added.
Thus, a social media presence should be coupled with a well-optimized strategy that suffices promotion needs, engages the right audience and eventually, catalyzes the business.
Adhere Social Media Trends & Analysis
A compelling and result-oriented social media strategy is developed with an intelligent blend of trends and analysis of social media. It should incorporate the prevailing trends and statistics of market analysis.
The most assured social media trends for 2014 are:
1) Google+ will emerge high as social network: Although, most of the marketers are still uncertain about the future of G+, the ADG’s research has concluded its upsurge this year. The active profiles on G+ will acquire best search engine ranks and stronger online presence.
2) Social Media will become a marketplace: This year, social media will come up as a shopping place from where consumers will make a great amount of shopping.
3) Facebook will form bigger picture: It has been concluded by various researchers that Facebook will die this year onwards. But, they must be ignoring active 1.19 billion members. Facebook is flooded with advertisers and promoters, which are continuously multiplying to bolster its growth. ADG’s research has concluded that the amount spent on Facebook will further increase this year.
4) Video-visual treat will be catalyst: Videos will be the invincible tools of marketing & promotion in social media. Undoubtedly, visual and dynamic expressions are more effective in communicating a message to consumers. In this tech dominating era, when we can browse videos anywhere, this strategy will be productive for all business regions.
5) Content Optimization and Marketing: Content optimization and marketing will be the backbone of social media marketing. According to statistics of ADG’s research, 30% of companies rated content marketing as important in 2012, which uplifted to 41% in 2013. It is also to be noted that in 2014 marketers will have to talk beyond the information on digital media. Information is already streaming in the market, but to rise above, marketers need to talk beyond information.
“Social media marketing is very distinctive that demands specialized marketing skills and strong knowledge to produce enormous business at a comparatively small cost,” said Mrs. Deepa Sayal. “This is the future of marketing, with far advanced competition than it is at present,” she added.
Social media is not just an option, it is nearly mandatory for enterprises to have a compelling presence on social media. There are several technological and market evolutions happening at present which are directly boosting the need to accelerate social media marketing. Plus, as social media costs you smaller, it is not very imprudent to not being in social media.
But, it is not actually free. Considering all the points explained above, social media marketing requires a lot of endeavor and intelligence. Especially, as we are leading towards a more competitive phase, developing gains from something of low-cost will be the most crucial. Digital Media has been growing aggressively from almost a decade and past three years have reckoned the most dynamic growth. The continuously multiplying pace of digital media has concluded a benchmarking year ahead.