Business Benefits of Social Media

3256031851_6d0a863f71By Jim Stiles

Unless you have been living in a cave for the past few years it should be no surprise that online social networking has become its own form of media vehicle. Even if you don’t have a LinkedIn or Facebook profile, or you don’t tweet, blog or v-log you are no doubt aware of the profound changes these sites are having on business communications.

Networking used to be a personal approach, you attended conferences, joined associations, went to clubs or somehow gathered with others who shared a similar interest. Communications were primarily verbal and interactions all face-to-face and success was measured by how many business cards you collected. Increasing the size of your personal network was time intensive and took a serious commitment to the process.

With the proliferation of internet based networking sites this paradigm has shifted. Networking has reached a mass-production level unprecedented by previous methods. One post can communicate to hundreds of “connections” in a matter of moments. Local and regional limits are erased and a user can literally reach out to similar minded people worldwide.

Initially for businesses this networking was considered a boon to the typical personal networking where you could ask for advice or recommendations. However with huge clusters of people begin congregating in one place it presents an easy target for reaching out to them with targeted ads for products and services they are likely to be interested in. Decoding the interests is easy since most groups are identified by that interest. There is a site, group, bulletin board, Youtube group, or similar for just about any interest/hobby/activity out there. Quite literally the power to reach massive amounts of your target audience is at your fingertips.

However, businesses must be mindful that you can’t just launch and pray. Your mere presence on those sites is no guarantee of success. In fact, despite success stories social media still remains just one component of a fully integrated marketing effort. In many respects it is the convergence of other traditional efforts, but it also relies on those vehicles for its effectiveness. The tools available to marketers are expanded but the strategies remain the same, companies need to carefully study the market, plan the approach thoroughly, execute creatively and appropriately for the media vehicle used.

If you don’t have an integrated plan in place or if it does not accommodate social media, take a look at the Blue C 360 approach. It is a thorough market approach with broad applications for managing all traditional and social media vehicles to the benefit of our clients. We tailor the plan to each customers specific situation, but most importantly we use it to generate real world results.


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