Social Media has turned the marketing world upside down. Companies now know they need to market themselves through social media if they want to have any chance of making their business a success. Marketing has now taken the form of social proof, which is the influence of the realization that others are using something that you should be using as well. This means that if person A sees person B, who happens to be their best friend, doing something, they want to do it too. Social proof is also called informational social influence.
Social media marketing has been successful for such companies as Disney, who designed a MySpace page in 2006 to advertise their movie, “Step Up.” Disney went on to prove that the page, and the frequent updates Disney made to it, not only drove DVD sales up, it also expanded the movie’s fan base by over 156,000 people. When Disney released the movie’s follow up, called “Step Up 2 The Streets,” it became a hit at the box office because of all the fans they acquired through their MySpace page.
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Using Twitter, Sony launched a social media campaign encouraging users to purchase their merchandise. Members of Twitter were able to get a 10% discount on all Sony merchandise because of this campaign. They also offered more than 1,500 customers an opportunity that allowed them to customize a new Vaio laptop. The campaign resulted in Twitter doing $1.5 million in business they may not have done otherwise.
Computer giants such as IBM and Dell have also had much success with social media. IBM reported a profit of millions of dollars acquired through use of it. In June of 2009, Dell reported that they were able to track a sales total of $3 million, using their account on Twitter.
A study conducted by Comscore shows that Twitter and Facebook users make more purchases online than others. People who use Facebook heavily were reported as spending $67 per online transaction, as opposed to others that spend about $50 per online transaction.
Retail companies such as Gap have also taken advantage of social media to increase their sales numbers. In 2010, Gap put an offer on Groupon stating customers could buy a $50 gift card for $25. This offer helped Gap pull in $11 million worth of revenue and increased their business overall.
The website Techcrunch defines five different types of social proof. These types are expert, celebrity, user, wisdom of the crowds and wisdom of your friends. A credible expert can have a huge influence on a product’s sales. Celebrities are often featured in commercials advertising a bank or credit card. User proof is when a company such as Direct TV uses their customer’s success stories to promote their product. Wisdom of the crowds refers to advertisement’s such as McDonald’s claim of “Over 1 Million Served.” Wisdom of friends means people often use products their friends use.
Direct TV’s approach of using customers testimonials has been a strong advertising tool for them. Besides using those stories, Direct TV also posts articles on their own website, informing their customers of all the things they will accomplish by having this particular television service. This is a marketing tactic used to encourage current customers to continue with their television services, while at the same time, attracting new customers. For example, one article on their website tells customers they can watch HD channels on their personal computers. It lists all the benefits they offer to their customers and gets them excited about using their services.
Social media is king in today’s marketing world.
Category: Social Media