Social media is rapidly effecting how consumers interact, buy, and view their favorite brands. Let’s admit it folks! Consumers now hold a large amount of control over the success and failure of consumable products.
After reading an article by Michael Castro of MAKESociable.com I found the three changes in the social media sector to be very accurate and necessary for the evolution of marketing, advertising, and public relations industries. The three changes Castro ruminates on are as follows: increased audience segmentation, direct monetization of social networks, and improved metrics.
Social media is evolving and growing. More than ever people have options to go anywhere to live digitally. I think companies have to get creative when it concerns traffic and organic buzz. According to Castro:
“As more and more social networks pop up, brands will have to consider a more segmented audience. Just as you wouldn’t only advertise on NBC, you don’t want to only be active on one social network. It will become more important to research where your target audience is spending their time and then tailor your social media marketing strategy to go where the customers are.”
Marketing proffesionals can no longer rely on traffic to flow freely to their content. Simply posting a link to your Facebook or Twitter landing page won’t get you the desired hits. To be realistic people are picky and want options. This will create new problems for companies that lack original content and lack brand awareness amongst their target audience.
The other two implications are already taking off and beng used by popular social media platforms, such as Pinterest.
Monetization of social media is being seen through Facebook. Companies often provide coupons to those who like and or follow. This trend will allow consumers to have an acute shopping experience. However, this change will also make it doubly harder for brands to pinpoint how social media backing can correlate to sales.
Segmentation through social media will be important for brands in that it will allow for consumer habits to clearly advise how to handle new trends, why quality control feedback is poor, and when peek consumer buying season approaches. In a nutshell, knowing your metrics will be a science, an all inclusive snapshot of how your target market sees and interacts with your brand. Castro advises that analytics will be an unavoidable tool that every marketing professional will eventually use in order to gain perspective:
“Cutting edge CRM platforms such as UberVU can now provide brands with something called “Sentiment Metrics”. The future of social media insights is going to be all about sentiment metrics. Simply finding out how many mentions your business had doesn’t mean much to a brand marketer. New technology can actually rate the sentiment of each mention as positive, negative or neutral”(Castro, 2013). Knowing the smallest of details regarding consumer feedback will allow for a more robust view of your brand and future success.
However, as social media and analysis tools evolve there is a conclusion that still exists: technology and people both have created a society that included an evolving and increasingly impersonal communications style that has flourished. However, as people try to fight new efforts and desire to “un-plug” they are unable to do so because we all know someone that has a digital persona. Do you think that traditional forms of communications are obsolete or will new technologies incorporate modern touches to fading modes of communication?