Posted by Steve Parker, Jr. (@sparkerjr)
Social Marketing, Social Media, Social Networking—unless you’ve been living under a rock since the early 2000s, these are terms that you’ve heard so often you’re probably rolling your eyes as you read this. By the same token, have you ever considered if you are even using them correctly? Often times marketing professionals misuse these three terms, creating a fair amount of confusion for business professionals who are looking for Social Services. Here is a quick overview:
Social Networking is one of the original social terms referring to the actual social structure of a web-based community of consumers who actively connect and share information between one another. A social networking platform allows consumers to share ideas, pictures, interests, events and more. Your own personal Facebook page or YouTube channel are perfect examples of social networking.
Social Marketing is probably the most obvious of the three. Social Marketing isn’t only measured by sales figures, this term also relates to how brands are representing themselves on social networking sites. Social Marketing relates to the techniques and concepts that are being taken to achieve your brands specific goals. For example, if your brand is launching a Facebook page and looking to build exposure and increase audience members, we must first consider your Social Marketing Strategy. How will this page represent your brand? What type of content will speak to your customer? How will you reach your target audience?
Social Media is just that: media. This phrase refers to (paid) digital advertising that takes place on a social networking platform; for example a Facebook run-of-site ad or a promoted Tweet. When we’re discussing your business’s “Social Media Strategy” we are talking about how our team of experts will leverage social advertising to reach your marketing goal though a measurable, paid social media strategy. This strategy includes targeting based on content, demographics, interests and more. While Social Media is an investment, with the right strategy it can be a powerful tool to achieve your Social Marketing and business goals.
Since Social has introduced a new language of terms (e.g. Tweet, Poke, Tag) it’s not uncommon for things to get a little confusing. Do you know any Social Terms that you feel are being misused? Perhaps you have a question for our team? If so, feel free to share your comments below!