Anyone who’s tried to build a business or studied sales and/or marketing is probably aware that at one point “word of mouth” was known to be perhaps the best form of advertising a business. (This is the reason companies and businesses would create posters that read “Like our work? Tell a friend!” and “Bring a friend, get 50% off your next appointment!”) Those tactics, however, have recently fallen by the wayside, as social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr have taken over as a primary communication network. Because of the digital age, social media marketing has become the new “word of mouth.”
The social media marketing trends have started to climb exponentially. It seems like there are virtually limitless ways that companies and businesses are getting their names out on the World Wide Web. From the creation of their own social media pages that satisfied customers can “like,” “follow,” and use interactively to pay-per-click ads on popular blogs, business owners have had to adjust with the modern technology in order to stay afloat.
Some trends for social media marketing are almost frighteningly covert. On the popular social media website, Facebook, for instance, there are both overt and subtle ways that businesses will advertise their products. The overt, of course, comes in the form of not-so-subtly placed advertisements in the margins of the page. These, however, are not just randomly placed on every page. Instead, the makers of Facebook have created an algorithm that takes into account the previous activity of each user, providing them with specifically targeted ads which will appeal to them. This saves the business owners from having to go out of their way to find their target audience – they simply create an ad, submit it to Facebook (and pay a small fee), and – presto! – it appears instantly on thousands of potential customers’ pages. Other ways that companies will advertise their products is by creating posts that have cleverly spun language that will get users to read articles that employ product placement and subtle advertising tactics.
While these are just a few examples of the ways Facebook has launched itself into the social media marketing world, this is by no means a full representation of the possibilities. Each social media site has their own perks and ways of helping businesses advertise, and all avenues should be explored for companies that wish to truly succeed. In today’s world, technology is no longer the “wave of the future,” but it’s the presently active format for communication that most young consumers will utilize. Because of this, social media marketing is as relevant and vital to a business’s success as the products they make or services they provide.