I’ve been doing this blogging thing for a while – 7 years now, in fact. It started in the same year I went back to school. In that time I’ve earned a certificate in eCommerce (Pellissippi State Community College), a BS in Marketing Management (Western Governors University, TN) and am now working toward my MS in Social Media Marketing (Southern New Hampshire University). And in all of that time I’ve independently studied, and written about, social media. My current class is MKT-555, Social Media. So that when this week’s assignment, to write a blog about a social media application, came up, I thought, well gosh!
But wait a moment; what exactly am I going to write about? The instructions read simply:
Discuss the current state of social media within your industry. What tools does your industry use or should use to improve their standings in the social media environment?
(The tough thing about grad school is that students aren’t spoon-fed an education; they’re required to critically reason and figure out much of what they need to know on their own. The time of hand-holding got left back in the days of being an undergrad.)
So what is the state of social media within the social media industry?
Content Marketing – Perhaps one of the biggest movements currently is content marketing. Today’s concerns about advertising and ad blocking have steered many social media marketing efforts toward the generation of content. But generated content applied in the context of marketing takes on different forms, most notably how marketing content varies. Joe Pulizzi of the Content Marketing Institute has spoken often and adamantly about the difference between content marketing and native advertising. Blogging is perhaps one of the best known examples of how marketing content is distributed, often in either form.
The point here, however is the paradigm shift from broadcast messaging to a more conversational approach with consumers. Today’s marketplace is much savvier. Buyers do online research about the products and services they are interested in purchasing on their own, and prefer to ignore traditional advertising. They trust other buyers much more than they trust corporations, and look to social media channels such as Facebook and Pinterest to gather data, making more informed decisions as a result.
The result is that many marketers consider content marketing to be a mainstream strategy, one which is expected to serve for some time
eCommerce – In the new millennium consumers continue to wait for two things: the killer app and flying cars. The killer app is an odds-on fave to arrive first. In the meantime the appearance of buy buttons have ushered in a new phase of eCommerce, more appropriately termed social commerce.
Buy buttons are accessed inside an app within a social media platform. The app allows entrance of the customer’s credit card information, thus completing the purchase cycle directly, without need to interface with the vendor’s Website.
Social buttons serve the dual purpose of providing KPI’s while also offering a historic data stream; their utilization constructs the added dimension of augmented connectivity to online engagement in social networking sites (SNS). Consumer partiality to access the digital domain via their hand held devices combined with a fondness for visual content creates an opportunity for commerce via SNS which is cost-effective and readily accessible.
Social commerce has the potential to readily enhance profitability for businesses while reducing transactional costs at the same time. Pinterest is currently the leader in use of buy buttons.
There are many other examples of social media applications, but to discuss even several more is beyond the scope of this post. So, for the eager reader wishing to explore some further examples, I offer this list of Web 2.0 application tutorials.
I certainly hope you’ve gained something of value from this article. Be sure to share it using the buttons below, and come back every week to Grannelle to stay up to date on commentary about current issues in social media and eBusiness.
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