What is Social Media?

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Social media is a collective term for websites and applications that focus on communication, community-based input, interaction, content-sharing and collaboration.

People use social media to stay in touch and interact with friends, family and various communities. Businesses use social applications to market and promote their products and track customer concerns.

Business-to-consumer websites include social components, such as comment fields for users. Various tools help businesses track, measure and analyze the attention the company gets from social media, including brand perception and customer insight.

Social media has enormous traction globally. Mobile applications make these platforms easily accessible. Some popular examples of general social media platforms include Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

 

What are the business applications of social media?

In business, social media is used to market products, promote brands, connect to customers and foster new business. As a communication platform, social media promotes customer feedback and makes it easy for customers to share their experiences with a company. Businesses can respond quickly to positive and negative feedback, address customer problems and maintain or rebuild customer confidence.

Social media is also used for crowdsourcing. That's the practice of using social networking to gather knowledge, goods or services. Companies use crowdsourcing to get ideas from employees, customers and the general public for improving products or developing future products or services.

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Examples of business to business (B2B) applications include the following:

  • Social media analytics. This is the practice of gathering and analyzing data from blogs and social media websites to assist in making business decisions. The most common use of social media analytics is to do customer sentiment analysis.
  • Social media marketing (SMM). This application increases a company's brand exposure and customer reach. The goal is to create compelling content that social media users will share with their social networks. A key components of SMM is social media optimization (SMO). Like search engine optimization, SMO is a strategy for drawing new visitors to a website. Social media links and share buttons are added to content and activities are promoted via status updates, tweets and blogs.
  • Social customer relationship marketing. Social CRM is a powerful business tool. For example, a Facebook page lets people who like a company's brand to like the business's page. This, in turn, creates ways to communicate, market and network. Social media sites give users the option to follow conversations about a product or brand to get real-time market data and feedback.
  • Recruiting. Social recruiting has become a key part of employee recruitment strategies. It is a fast way to reach a lot of potential candidates, both active job seekers and people who were not thinking about a job change until they say the recruitment post.
  • Enterprise social networking. Businesses also use enterprise social networking to connect people who share similar interests or activities. These applications include internal intranets and collaboration tools, such as Yammer, Slack and Microsoft Teams, that give employees access to information and communication capabilities. Externally, public social media platforms let organizations stay close to customers and make it easy to conduct market research.

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Source: https://www.techtarget.com/whatis/definition/social-media

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