Social Media Channels - Categorization

When one looks at the various social media channels and the traffic that flows through the various networks, you will be surprised at the amount of conversation and exchange of information that is taking place. As an individual it is but natural that every one of us would be logging in to several networks almost on daily basis and pursuing our interests. When you wish to study Social Media from the perspective of a marketer interested in reaching out to the larger audience which happens to be your prospective customers, you will find that your approach to understanding of the Social Media needs to change. Essentially you have got to change your perception from that of a Social Network user or participant to that of a Marketer which calls for looking at the Social Media from a different angle altogether.

Social Media channels can be grouped together under broad functional categories such as Platforms, Content and Networks promoting interaction. By listing all of the platforms under the said categories help the marketer to choose his channel mix appropriately.

It helps one to understand and identify the prospective customers and obtain clarity on how to engage with the customer positively. By identifying the particular medium that is likely to be effective in reaching out to the prospective customer and prompting him to make that decision to buy you are able to build and apply specific customer centric approach and successfully reach the target audience.

Social Platforms category includes so called White Label Social Networks, Personal Social Networks as well as Wikis etc. Under Social Content, the various blogs, micro blogs, video sharing, photos as well as audio and podcast etc are covered. Social interaction platforms include the SMS, Emails, RSS as well as the various events etc.

Marketing programs at a macro level deal with the overall strategy. The media plan too contains a larger frame work of approach to using various media including print, visual and traditional media. Social Media cannot be used in isolation and it forms a subset or a part of the overall media mix that the advertiser uses to approach the consumers.

From amongst the various social media channels, it is important to identify that particular segment of target audience, map their presence in the particular platform and then choose the appropriate method of participation. Mapping the social feedback cycle, understanding how the prospective customer makes his decision with the help of the others participating in the social media is necessary to be able to build a specific social media strategy. Social interaction forms the basis of advertising and marketing. Word of mouth publicity tends to play a significant role in the traditional marketing and sales channels. When it comes to Social Media, the Word of Mouth assumes gigantic proportion especially in case of micro blogging, SMS and other channels. Understanding how this can aid or harm the marketer’s reputation on the Social Media helps one design an effective marketing strategy that is tailor made for this segment.


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