How Has Social Media Revolutionized Marketing?

Internet Social Media Tree

Globalization of the world’s trade has brought about many changes. Goods can be made for less, exotic materials can be traded, and the labor involved in certain work can be outsourced.

Social media has brought about similar changes to marketing. In its relatively short existence, it’s brought with it a plethora of changes that make what was once impossible with traditional mediums such as newspaper, radio, and television possible. It’s brought with it some important changes that old advertising methods simply had to guess at before, such as clearly measurable metrics.

Harbinger of Change

The biggest change that it has brought is the ability for even the smallest voice to be heard. Glaring problems and glowing comments can be heard by businesses and other consumers, which means that almost every business in the modern world has been forced to take notice of it. Social media is so powerful that it has given companies that pay attention to their customers the most success in their respective industries.

Advertising for Everyone

Another change afforded by social media is the ability for anyone to advertise a business.

Unlike with traditional advertising campaigns, social media marketing campaigns can often be started for no more than the cost of time. This means that even businesses with a low advertising budget can find it incredibly useful, especially when they can’t afford a hefty deposit for pay-per-impression banners.

This carries with it another implication – social media isn’t for the faint of heart. Just because it often costs little or nothing to start a social media campaign, that doesn’t mean that it will be successful.

The Message Fails, Not the Medium

Many campaigns can end up falling flat before they’ve even begun, as it can be hard to get a solid social media campaign rolling if the audience is unreceptive. This can either steer small businesses away from trying this medium again, or discourage them from trying in the first place. But to truly have a successful social media campaign means to understand your target market.

Level Playing Field

In that aspect, the playing field between big and small businesses has been leveled. A big business can spend millions of dollars on a social media campaign only to have it turn out as a failure or even with negative results, while a small business can be just as successful with a no-cost social media campaign.

The crucial difference between these stories of success and failure always lies in how well those companies understood the audience. The ability to understand a social media audience is yet another change from traditional marketing mediums.

Just the Facts

Instead of using sketchy measures of brand recognition and audience engagement to measure advertising effectiveness, social media campaigns can often be marketed in cold, hard numbers. There are a wide variety of tools that allow businesses to track how often brand phrases are mentioned on social media, how much an audience interacts with a business on a social media platform, and how cost efficient a social media marketing campaign is. This results in the type of efficiency that traditional marketing mediums could only dream of.

Social media has made big and small businesses equal when it comes to marketing. The main factor that determines success with social media has shifted to intelligent marketing strategies that stem from understanding the target audience, which is something that has been made easier than ever before with the revolution that social media has brought to marketing.

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Paul Tomaszewski is a science & tech writer as well as a programmer and entrepreneur. He is the founder and editor-in-chief of CosmoBC. He has a degree in computer science from John Abbott College, a bachelor's degree in technology from the Memorial University of Newfoundland, and completed some business and economics classes at Concordia University in Montreal. While in college he was the vice-president of the Astronomy Club. In his spare time he is an amateur astronomer and enjoys reading or watching science-fiction. You can follow him on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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