How social media revolutionised marketing in less than a decade
With Snapchat creating brand filters and Instagram introducing in-app purchases, marketing has undergone a sea change thanks to social media. However, experts say we have only scratched the surface
In the age of social media, companies have been adopting a different approach to marketing. Social media has become a great tool for companies to improve their communication with customers. Interestingly, in less than a decade of its existence, social media has also dramatically shifted from being an entertainment platform to a fully-integrated marketing platform for marketers.
From Instagram hiding likes, Facebook creating an integrated payment platform and Twitter becoming as a source to gather trending topics, these platforms have helped marketers target the most niche markets to gain maximum returns. Undoubtedly, social media platforms are making great efforts to woo marketers as well as consumers.
Almost every other social media platform can be used for marketing, making it easier for brands to reach out to a wider audience reach without spending much on advertising. The recent addition is Instagram allowing users to check shoppable items on the app itself, instead of being redirected to the seller’s website. It is only social media that has strengthen things like moment marketing and meme marketing among brands.
However, experts believe that while these platforms are growing as a wonderful marketing tool, brands should be mindful about using social media for marketing purpose and not overdoing it, which can lead to loss of interest amongst the users.
"There's no doubt that social media has been evolving every day with multiple new features and capabilities being introduced and tweaked from time to time by the platforms," said Prasad Shejale, Founder and CEO, Logicserve Digital.
According to Shejale the advancement in technologies like AR and VR has enhanced creative capabilities. Thus, the developers are also focusing on the commercial returns on such platforms.
He stated the example of Snapchat creating everyday filters along with sponsored filters for businesses/brands. Shejale believes that one of the key reasons behind this disruption is the rising number of internet users as well as affordable data plans.
We will see more advancements on social platforms, and they will continue introducing newer and more unique ways of engaging with the users and marketers. However, sometimes, brands go beyond the limits and produce sensational content just to grab more eyeballs, he added.
Sai Sangeeta Israni, GM Marketing, Spykar Lifestyle Pvt. Ltd also agreed that social media has come a long way from being just a photo-sharing platform. “It is a lead for brands to get into social commerce,” she said.
At the same time, Israni believes that somewhere, the lines between marketing and performance are blurring and all content produced by brands is expected to lead to either brand engagement, product engagement or sales. However, this is not the case.
Brands don’t do it for benefits all the time. Sometimes they too use it as a platform to share their thoughts instead of marketing. But due to their responsibility as a stakeholder of the society, they should make sure that the line between marketing and performance is clear enough, she added.
Talking about social media marketing, she said, with quick mobile access, visually-cinematic content and full attention of the viewer, the medium is a great platform to engage a potential shopper.
Therefore one sees e-commerce platforms now developing their own 'ideas' capsules, aping the content styles offered by such platforms. “With Amazon looking at investing $1 billion in India and serving as an alternate conversation platform to Google and Facebook, things are about to heat up and the next three years with every brand wanting to be digital-first,” explained Israni.
Since the digital world has evolved significantly in the last decade, social media has emerged as the most popular media platforms for users and brands both.
Sameer Makani, Co-Founder and MD of Makani Creatives also opined that social media has not only enabled individuals to explore trends from around the world but also helped brands to reach potential customers directly as the number of users on these platform increases every day.
“The true potential of social media is yet to be explored as the possibilities are endless, it might overtake the conventional styles of marketing and business,” asserted Makani.
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