The Internet has revolutionized the way companies advertise and engage with the public. For this reason, marketing in social networks has been gaining space in organizations, which use this medium to achieve more positive results.
In order for you to be able to use these channels correctly, we want to offer you this post, with the aim that it becomes a true marketing guide for social networks.
In the topics that we are going to discuss, we will explain when social networks arose, what is the difference between social network and social media, or what is social media marketing and why it can be interesting to invest in these channels. In addition, we will show which are the most used social networks, how to produce content and how specialized social media can help you. Stay with us and stay up to date with all the news.
When did social networks emerge?
When we talk about social networks, the first thing that comes to mind are channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, among others. But the concept of the social network is much broader than that, and has its beginning in sociology, even before the internet appeared.
A social network is nothing more than a network of relationships, something similar to the idea of region, according to the concept elaborated by the theorist José Clemente Pozenato , in the book “Cultural processes: reflections on cultural dynamics”.
In this way we can say that social networks arose in the time of the caves, when our ancestors gathered to tell and hear stories. Any group in which there is an exchange of relationships, therefore, can be considered a social network, be it digital or face-to-face.
A group of students from a university, the faithful of a church, those associated with a club, among other groups, are considered a social network. Therefore, as we can see, the concept of social network is broader than we imagine and its beginnings are lost at the beginning of time.
What is the difference between social network and social media?
Whoever says that Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or other digital channels are social networks is not wrong, since, as we have seen, they form groups of relationships, which is included within the concept. But social networks also have media characteristics, and may then receive the name of social media.
Facebook, for example, can be considered both a social network and a social media. This is because it makes users connect with each other, forming a network of relationships and, at the same time, allows the production and publication of photos, texts, videos and other media content.
The first social media records emerged in the mid-90s when the internet became popular all over the world and the first discussion forums emerged on the internet.
For some researchers, the first social media to emerge was Six Degrees, a site where users could create a profile and add other readers, forming a network of contacts. This channel emerged in 1997 and was discontinued in 2001.
During the following years other social media emerged and were gaining popularity. This is the case of MySpace and Friendster, which was the first social network to reach one million users. Currently not only individuals use networks and social media to connect with others … Also companies, thus generating the so-called social network marketing.
Before the popularization of social networks on the internet, marketing strategies were carried out mainly in the so-called traditional media. In this way, radio or television, paper newspapers, flyers, among other channels, were used to communicate with the public.
These media had a disadvantage: the power of communication was only in the hands of a few. Thus, the owners of television networks, for example, were the only ones who could produce content for that vehicle. In such a way that if the companies wanted to issue a statement, display an advertising message, etc … they had to pay for it to be issued.
With the popularization of social networks on the internet, companies were able to have their own communication channels. Today, anyone can create an account on YouTube and produce videos, for example.
But, the concept of social media marketing is huge. Not only does it refer to the production of content for all the media that have emerged, it must also be aware of the relationship with the public.
Today, anyone can enter an organization’s Facebook page and leave a negative message. In this case, it is necessary to use public relations techniques to defuse the situation and prevent it from becoming a disruption or an image crisis for the company.
In addition, you always have to take into account the tasks of social media marketing, the planning and control of the budget. Just as in the past it was necessary to pay to appear on television, now there are also means to make sponsored posts and advertisements on most social networks. In this way the publications reach a larger number of people.
The main advantage of investing in advertising on social networks is that they are not massive. If you have a company that sells articles for athletes, for example, and you buy an ad in prime time on the largest radio station in Chile, for example, it will have tremendous visibility. Hundreds of thousands of people will see your ad! But how many actually have an interest in what you sell?
In the case of social networks, you can make the same announcement and segment it towards a much more restricted audience profile of people who may really be interested in purchasing the products for athletes that you are selling.
This justifies why classifications can be created according to sex, age, location, preferences registered in the social networks themselves, etc. Your money, in this way, will be well spent and the results will be more effective for your business.
Why is it important to invest in social media marketing?
Now that you know what social media marketing is and how it can save you money on advertising your business, you need to understand the importance of this investment. This is because the advantages of this channel are innumerable. We will talk about some of them. Let’s go there!
Strengthen ties with the public
The researcher Raquel Recuero is the author of the book “Social Networks on the Internet” and one of the main scholars in the area, defends the theory that all relationships established in the networks generate ties, which can be strong or weak.
If a person visits a company page on Facebook, for example, they are establishing a bond with the brand. But that bond is still loose, for it to become strong it is necessary that there be interaction between the two parties.
With the strengthening of ties, there will be more opportunities for people to become leads and, after that, customers of the brand. That is why it is important to create content that seduces and, if possible, that stimulates the participation of followers, such as promotions,
Disclosure of organizational culture
Organizational culture is no longer something that should remain within the four walls of the company. Increasingly, people value transparency in business and that is precisely why internal values have to be disclosed.
It is useless for a company to say that it is a friend of nature, for example, if it is emitting harmful gases into the air. Through social networks, this company can show the public the actions it takes in terms of preserving natural resources. This ends up being much more effective than anything they say in publicizing their corporate culture.
Thus, the values, mission and vision of the business can be converted into actions that will be shown and may even have the participation of followers.
Possibility of segmenting audiences
Social networks, as we have said, make communication possible for very specific niches. But companies do not always work for a single profile. That is why the so-called buyer personas can be developed, which are the embodiment of what the real customers of a business would be like.
Imagine, for example, a shoe store that sells shoes and also sports shoes. They can therefore cater to a more traditional audience that likes to dress well and, at the same time, people who practice sports, such as running or hiking and who want comfortable shoes to do so.
In social networks it is possible to create posts for both types of audience, adapting the language for each one, using techniques such as copywriting .
Sales through social networks
Although social networks are not the only digital marketing strategy to be implemented in order to sell more, they can also be used for that purpose.
The idea is that you make the announcements or posts promoting the products or services that your company offers. In this way, followers can be directed to the site or landing page where the purchase will be made.
Another advantage of social networks is that they contribute to SEO, allowing your content to be found through various search engines.
What are the most used social networks?
There are many social networks, many of them focused on a specific audience. That is why it is advisable for companies to do a thorough study to know in which of these channels their audience is present and to be able to have more positive results.
Now we are going to talk a little about the most used social networks on the internet today, telling you some curiosities about each of them.
Facebook was created in 2004 by Mark Zuckerberg, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes, three Harvard University alumni. At that time they could not get the idea of the empire they were going to create.
The story of Facebook, which was originally intended to be a social network only for Harvard students, was made into a movie in the movie “The Social Network.”
Facebook grew exponentially and today it is one of the technological giants. There are more than 500 million who have an account on this social network, being one of the most used channels by companies that want to invest in digital marketing .
Created in 2009 by former Yahoo! developers Brian Acton and Jam Koum, WhatsApp is today the world’s most popular messaging app. In 2014, the creators of the app sold the project and its shares to Facebook, which from that moment became responsible for the company and its development.
The idea of WhatsApp was to be an alternative to SMS services, which were quite expensive for users. Currently, in addition to text messages, it is also possible to share content in the form of images, audio and video, in addition to making voice calls through the application.
There is also WhatsApp Business , an exclusive version for companies. In this way, businesses can create an authenticated account and communicate with their clientele.
The largest video platform in the world, YouTube, is also a social network, since it creates connection and forms a network between users. The site was created in February 2005, by developers Chad Hurley, Steve Chen and Jawed Karim.
Since then YouTube has grown a lot and today being youtuber is practically a profession. There are many people who are dedicated to producing videos on their channels and thus offer a form of entertainment through the site.
As YouTube is a social media that allows the publication of videos in addition to live transmission, it is also highly recommended to companies that want to do social media marketing.
Instagram is one of the social networks whose popularity has grown the fastest since it was created in 2010. At first it was called Burbn, but a few months later it received its current name. Also at the beginning it was only used to apply filters and share photos. Currently many functions were added, such as Stories. This tool is inspired by Snapchat, another social network that was in fashion.
Instagram was created by Brazilian Mike Krieger, in collaboration with Kevin Systrom. In 2012, when the application was already quite popular, it was bought by Facebook, which is, today, responsible for this social network.
Created in 2006 by Jack Dorsey, Noah Glass, Biz Stone, and Evan Williams, Twitter is a social network that allows posts of up to 140 characters. The initial idea is for the social network to function as a microblog, in which people could share brief information with their followers.
Twitter dazzled the public and became used by many people as a vehicle for communication. As it is a very agile tool, it is an ideal social network to tell what is happening right now.
Although Twitter has its ups and downs in popularity, it is still used by many, many people and is truly useful for social media marketing in certain types of sectors.
Other social networks
There are other social networks that, despite having fewer users, can be very useful for certain market niches. This is the case, for example, of Snapchat, Tumblr, Pinterest, among others.
It is convenient to analyze each of these channels to verify whether or not it is worth investing in them with some strategic actions.
Pinterest, for example, plays an important role in the fashion and travel industry. Therefore, it is interesting for companies that belong to these segments.
How to produce content for each social network?
Content production in social media marketing varies according to the channel we use. Facebook is a powerful network that is why it supports a wide range of products.
In contrast, the social network LinkedIn, for example, is more aimed at the business environment. This being the case, the content must always be developed with a language adapted to that audience profile.
In general, there are some items that must always be taken into account when producing content for social networks. Let’s see them.
Regardless of the channel chosen to carry out your social media marketing, there needs to be a plan behind it. You shouldn’t just create random content, without careful review of your audience.
It is necessary to always keep in mind what the objectives of the organization are when being in the social network in order to create content calendars and relationship strategies. Never create an account on a social network and leave it abandoned!
Make your content of quality!
It may seem that it is an outdated issue, but you should not have content of dubious quality on your company’s channels, since the image of your business may be in question.
You have to be very careful and even a journalistic suspicion so that your page does not disclose fakes, for example. The content production must always be contrasted.
Instagram, for example, is a social network that is mainly based on sharing images. That being the case, the minimum is to bet on taking photos with good quality, which are beautiful and pleasant. We must also pay attention to the ideal size that the images have to have in each social network . A point that should never be neglected.
And the same for YouTube, in which you need to have the videos very well recorded and produced. Investing in the best cameras for recording videos can help in this regard, as the images will be of sufficient quality so that people want to see what you do.
Bet on content that generates shares
We call propagation engagement the strategies that provoke the interaction of people with the content you publish on the company’s social networks. This engagement test can be a “like”, a comment, a share , etc.
To carry out a good strategy, an interesting idea is to make people feel instigated to interact with you on the networks. In this way, asking questions, producing content in the form of games or activities, among others, are the appropriate actions.
Propagation engagement, in addition to causing more people to have access to the materials shared by your actions on social networks, also helps SEO : This means that the more people interact with your content, the more they will be shown in the feeds and, logically , more business opportunities will occur.
How to post on multiple social networks at the same time and automatically?
It can be easy to control all your social networks in one account, but what happens when you need to create content and schedule posts on multiple profiles? How to control all this?
In this case, the ideal is to have a tool to create and schedule publications on social networks in an easy and practical way so as not to waste more time and organize the publication of your content on these channels.
Here at Social Sutra Digital we use our own tool to create and schedule social media posts .
And if you need inspiration, you can use our marketing calendar with hundreds of dates available such as No Pants Day on the Subway or Bath Day (seriously! :), which you can use to create original and high-impact content.
Make social networks a kind of Customer Service
Customer Service (SAC) was generally carried out by telephone. Today, many people prefer to ask for information, make complaints or express compliments online. This is why social media marketing cannot ignore this activity.
It is necessary that you make networks a channel to strengthen ties, based on theories, as we have already commented on Raquel Recuero.
In addition, interactions with the public also serve to generate content ideas. If many people have the same questions about how to use a product, for example, a tutorial can be made to help in this regard.
How can specialized online software help?
Online software can be true allies of your social media marketing strategy. This is because there are many programs that can help with the production and dissemination of content.
There are some softwares that make possible the programming of the posts, the organization of the schedules for the publication, generation of interaction reports … All this contributes so that the most strategic actions can be developed in the future.
There are also other online softwares , which allow integration with social networks. Widely used for e-mail marketing actions and sending messages, this tool can be integrated with social media.
For example, you have already received newsletters with buttons at the bottom of the page or in the header so that you can share the content on networks such as Twitter or Facebook.
Marketing directed to social networks today represents a significant sector of advertising actions and public relations developed by companies. Therefore, it is necessary to always be attentive to news in the field and we hope that this post has been useful in this regard.
Remember that Social Sutra Digital can help your company to be even more efficient in this type of media. Experience our platform and see for yourself!