Most of us realize how big Social Media is these days, everyone from your grandmother to your high school friends use it, whether it is Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest or any other platform. Social Media has the power to influence, and change the way people behave. A big example of how powerful Social Media is, was the Kony 2012 campaign, where a fairly unknown dictator in Uganda, took the media by storm, after the NGO Invisible Children started spreading videos on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter about the atrocities committed by that government. As a result of that thousands of people came together with one request, that the United States intervened in Uganda to stop Kony’s brutality.
It is important to understand however, why Social Media is so powerful, and to do that we need to understand the nature of the technology. A Social Network can be defined as a platform where the user shares and receives information from people connected to them at some sociological level, it could be a good friend, an admired celebrity, or a mere acquaintance. What that creates is a network of trusted individuals who are interested in the information you have to offer, and that offer information that you are interested in. When something interesting is posted by someone (often referred as OP, or Original Poster on some networks) the tendency is that the people that trust their information will share it with their network of people, who will share it with their network of people, creating a long looping cascade of material.
How to benefit from the information loop?
Unfortunately not all the information that is posted on Social Media platforms is shared, and most of the time the reason for that is that the information posted was not interesting. When doing Social Media Marketing, it is important to understand your demographics and what is appealing to them. If the majority of your friends or followers are middle-aged housewives, posting something talking about how to treat acne for instance, won’t be too interesting for them.
Does it affect my rankings?
Social Media in itself is also now a big part of how most search engines look at your business and your website. The number of fans, followers, and shares, do matter as to how Google, Yahoo, and Bing will rank your website organically. Although many Social Media marketing services offer the ability to get more people to follow what you have to say, the quality of the people who are following you is extremely important to search engines. A person who retweets something you posted and also has over 1,000 followers, has a lot more authority than someone with 2 followers.
Social Media Marketing is now one of the most important aspects of the Internet Marketing puzzle, not being on the Social Networks means missing out on about half of what marketing online has to offer, so post, share and be a part of it, since the key to it’s effectiveness is being active.