Social Networking - Tapping into the "Big Three" + "YouTube"
I highly recommend that you increase your business marketing strategies by tapping into the "Big Three" social networking services: Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. We will also touch on YouTube, the very popular video sharing Web site, that lets anyone upload short videos for private or public viewing. There are many others, of course, but arguably these are the “top four” web based services, which can help promote your business to your target market. Best of all, they’re FREE!
What exactly is a social networking service?
- Wikipedia (an on-line dictionary) defines social networking services as, “…an on line service, platform, or site that focuses on building and reflecting of social networks or social relations among people, who, for example, share interests and/or activities. A social network service essentially consists of a representation of each user (often a profile), his/her social links, and a variety of additional services. Most social network services are web based and provide means for users to interact over the Internet, including e-mail and instant messaging.
- One popular use for this new technology is social networking between businesses. Companies have found that social networking sites are great ways to build their brand image. According to Jody Nimetz, author of Marketing Jive, “There are five major uses for businesses and social media: to create brand awareness, as an online reputation management tool, for recruiting, to learn about new technologies and competitors, and as a lead generation tool to intercept potential prospects. These companies are able to drive traffic to their own online sites while encouraging their consumers and clients to have discussions on how to improve or change products or services.”
But, isn’t Social Networking just a fad?
The website www.graphicsms.com/blog/877-social-networking-statistics-2010/ lists the following data: (Note: these are the published statistics for 2010)
- 47% of online adults use social networking sites and 73% of teens and young adults are a member of at least one social network.
- The global average time spent on social networking sites is now nearly five and a half hours per month.
- The active US-based social network audience grew roughly 29% from 115 million in February, 2009 to 149 million in February
Facebook: has more than 400+ million active users, with over 1.5 million business pages, with the average user spending more than 55 minutes per day on their site.
Twitter: has 24+ million unique visitors per month, with 50 million tweets per day, and 11 % or 33.8 million US online adults use this service.
LinkedIn: has 60+ million professional members worldwide, including all Fortune 500 companies.
And then, there’s YouTube:
The website http://www.website-monitoring.com/blog/2010/05/17/youtube-facts-and-figures-history-statistics/ lists the following data:
- YouTube exceeds 2 Billion views per day (Nearly double the prime time audience of all 3 major US broadcast networks combined).
- More videos uploaded to YouTube in 60 days, than all 3 major US broadcast networks created in 60 years.
- 24 hours of video are uploaded every minute.
- The average user spends 15 minutes per day on YouTube.
- 70% of the traffic comes from outside the US .
But, isn’t Social Networking a huge “time-suck?”
Yes, you will have to invest time and effort (but importantly – no money) to use these marketing tools effectively. Can you afford to ignore FRE on-line marketing tools when the user statistics are so staggering? Wouldn’t you rather be moving forward with these trends than standing by and wondering what all the “buzz” is about? Today’s business environment is highly competitive and to survive and thrive you need all the help you can get.
I will devote my next four blog posts to providing more depth about each of the "Big Three" Social Networks and YouTube, how they differ and how that will help you to use them to your advantage for your business. Until then, happy social networking!
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