Social Media: The Difference in Small Biz & Big Brand Social Media
With all this socializing going on, the challenge of coordinating and integrating messages across multiple social networks platforms has become top-of-mind. Businesses, large and small, are using social media platforms – but for very different reasons.
According to Erik Qualman’s book, Socialnomics – How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business, “If Facebook were a country it would be the third largest country in the world behind only China and India. Yet, some of the core marketing and business principles of the last few centuries will still apply; whilst other basic practices will become as extinct as the companies that continue to try to force them on the unwilling public. Businesses don’t have the choice on whether or not they do social media, the choice is on how well they do it.”
Studies show that the integration of multiple platforms collectively boosts the chance that a message will reach its target. But, first, marketers need to begin with their business objectives – Do you want to drive awareness or create engagement?
Small businesses generally use social media to drive awareness. Measurement is in the form of tracking website visitors, leads, and fans or followers. Small businesses aren’t really focused on engaging in conversations. Rather they prefer to generate awareness of their offerings in hopes that this will create a lead that will lead to a sale.
Big brands prefer to create engagement with social media with the goal of building quality contacts. Marketers want to stimulate conversation and will present the same message differently on the various social media platforms. Measurement is in the form of positive mentions in mainstream media and improved sentiment analysis.
Whether you are a marketer in a small or large company, the key is to take the plunge into social media, and to use social media across all platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and more.