Social media marketing can be a game changer

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In response to my last editorial, in which I had pointed out the powerful role social media play in brand building, some of our readers wanted to know more about this new trend. I subsequently came across a report on how B2B marketers are leveraging the social media. According to the study, which is based on research conducted on B2B marketers, the demand for social media websites like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and others is increasing, and enterprises, large and small, are using the unique applications of these websites to their advantage across all marketing functions.

According to the report, social media marketing has tremendous potential to reach out to millions of prospective buyers. Unfortunately, this potential is lying untapped by Indian electronics enterprises. Chinese enterprises, which remain Indian industry’s biggest rivals, have taken to this medium to market their products in a big way. Even a small country like Malaysia has realised the power of this medium and companies in that country have started using social media extensively.

The study points out that you are bound to be surprised by the results, as the benefits of a social media marketing thrust come faster than you’d expect. But, first, you need to be proficient in the use of social media. Then, you can plan your branding and promotion campaigns depending on the social media you use.

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According to the research, which is based on 622 responses from B2B marketers, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are the most used social media channels, followed by YouTube, blogs, customer communities, Flickr, Digg, Stumbleupon and Tumblr. One can also choose to use a combination of several social media channels. But the study says that LinkedIn is the clear leader, chosen by 30 per cent of the respondents, followed by Facebook, which was ‘liked’ by 20 per cent of the respondents. Blogging as a marketing medium came third with 19 per cent selecting it, Twitter was chosen by 16 per cent and YouTube by 8 per cent.

Many of the companies in India’s struggling electronics industry would be new to the very idea of using social media for marketing. Yet, in the coming years, this media is sure to be a resounding success. Lack of knowledge about social media websites and its applications is a major hurdle, holding back potential marketers from implementing a social media marketing campaign. But believe me, this media can be a game changer for the industry. So, while you can plan to budget for social media based campaigns in the coming year, begin right now by learning more about the power of this medium for brand building and marketing.

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