Social media marketing: what it is and how it works

Can companies communicate the news of their event, an important update or something else quickly?

Yes, using social media marketing strategies and, therefore, through social platforms such as:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Linkedin
  • Instagram
  • Tik Tok

just to name a few of the best known. The communication activity on these social platforms is precisely that of social media marketing, normally managed by a social media manager – a specialized figure, a web marketing professional, who plans, manages and verifies your communication online.

It is appropriate to make a necessary premise, before starting to talk about social media marketing.

Remember when, a few years ago, effective advertising was only conceived as TV advertising? It was thought that television was the only real channel capable of quickly spreading news, then repeating it, perhaps, several times in a period.

Advertisers spent hours with their team thinking about campaigns, slogans and the story to tell. Hand in hand was the billboard advertising, which also helped to reinforce the message.

Then, with the advent of the network, but in particular with the birth of Facebook, something in the field of advertising marketing began to change. From simple entertainment on Facebook, the platform has been conceived as a powerful tool for distributing advertising messages.

Where could you find so much data, left spontaneously and, therefore, use it to filter advertising campaigns even better in an even more targeted way? Undoubtedly on facebook.

In the beginning, like all things, however, you didn’t know how to communicate on the platform in the right way. It had not yet come to understand that those present on facebook were very different users from those you could hit with an advertisement on television.

From here began a reflection on communication: how can you communicate effectively with the people on Facebook? The copy had to be attractive, as well as the images, and that definitely meant studying carefully what was happening.

A real revolution was taking place that would then completely change the fate of traditional marketing, becoming web marketing in fact.

web marketing goes hand in hand with traditional marketing: it is from the latter that the most effective strategies come, which have now clearly converted to completely different methods and tools.

Today, communication has certainly changed and this is also because the tools with which it is managed are different and, for this reason, we are here to talk about social media marketing.

An important point on which I would like to focus is that social media marketing, unlike traditional advertising, allows the public to have “a voice” and to communicate with their company.

Social media marketing: definition of a job and a way of communicate

To better define what social media marketing is, I borrow the description from wikipedia:

“Social media marketing or social media marketing is that branch of marketing that deals with generating visibility on social media, virtual communities and aggregators 2.0 for companies, public bodies, associations, personalities.”

One of the characteristics that affect today’s communication is precisely the impossibility of creating face to face relationships with your users or rather with your audience.

And this is because basically you are remote and it is very difficult to understand what your target wants. In any case, however, it is highly necessary to create a relationship with the people you want to contact and, to do so, you need to interact with them.

How? Using the power of social media, hence the need to explore this matter and all the marketing implications that gravitate around it.

The purpose of social media marketing is to create a conversation with users.

For example, I take a company that I have been following personally for a couple of years now, both in terms of blogging and that of the facebook group.

Having the opportunity to interact with the target directly, thus using the private messages of the community, their requests for information, their comments under the social posts, allowed me to better understand what to aim for to write articles.

Let me explain: if in a month I notice that more than a hundred messages arrive regarding the request for information about a service that the company offers, obviously my editorial plan for that month will have one or two articles – plus – that answer those questions.

Listening to the target, talking to them, understanding their doubts and observing how much the company’s communication may not be clear on some points, while it is brilliant on others, therefore using Facebook as an interaction tool, gives you the opportunity to optimize your content – blog , video or otherwise – making them truly effective.

Many think that social media marketing is separate from blogging, as they are two different forms of communication.

The truth lies only in the second point, in the sense that objectively the communication style must necessarily be different. It is true that the target is always the same, but it is also equally true that those who interact with the company through social media do not want long and complicated posts to read.

Also for this reason, for example, social communication – and this can be confirmed by a social media manager – also uses emoticons.

Emoticons are those symbols that are placed next to words to emphasize their concepts. There, communication must be immediate, attractive, fun and comprehensive. The public looks for this on social media.

Obviously, another distinction must be made, in the sense that each social network then wants its communication and, therefore, there is a further differentiation of the work to be done. But this is not the place to deepen this complex issue too.

Returning therefore to the great help that social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram or Linkedin can give, what we need to focus on to understand what it means to invest in social media marketing activities is that this aspect of online communication must be managed. very carefully, as it can really help you a lot for your marketing.

An example of an activity could be to write for example a blog post and then distribute it on social networks . This way you do two things: you stimulate your target with content, take them to visit your blog and get in touch with you.

Clearly this is just one of the things you can do by linking blogs and social media. In fact, the social media marketing activity in itself is very structured, we will see it shortly.

Social media marketing: what is done in practice

Now we can go into the matter and understand what it really means to invest in a ’social media marketing activity .

To be done well, social media marketing needs a social media manager who in turn must be able to:

  • make a detailed analysis of the communication and the target;
  • know the social and web marketing communication dynamics;
  • have a certain versatility in the use of graphics programs such as Canva;
  • possess a strong summarizing and communicative gift to create truly effective social copy;
  • be skilled with managing comments, easily finding information;
  • manage management and programming tools well – social automation is essential.

So to talk about the activity of social media marketing, we must focus on the main performer, the protagonist, or the social media manager.

Most companies believe that communicating on social networks is enough to make simple posts with photos, but it is a mistaken belief, because behind the social logic, the creation of the post with engaging graphics is the least of the worries .

The starting point is the data and here, in fact, the social media manager intervenes. The person who carries out this work knows very well that before creating a social editorial plan it is necessary to have enough time to devote to the analysis of the target and competitor .

Furthermore, another mistaken belief is that concerning the presumption of knowing immediately how it is best to communicate with your audience. To really understand what works, you have to experiment.

And yes, this is the only real way to really understand what is effective and what is not.

So, thinking about doing social media marketing, editing a few posts every now and on the contrary 3 posts a day every day – very wrong strategy – without having the basics of communication, marketing and knowledge of social dynamics, is like deciding to jump off a cliff without a parachute: the crash is inevitable.

The social media manager is an expert on all social platforms, knows their potential and is able to integrate them effectively with each other, thus carrying out a skilled activity of social media marketing.

Social media marketing: the benefits of this job for your business

Now that we have specified what this work consists of, let’s focus for a moment on what the advantages of social media marketing for your business may be, namely:

  • You will have the opportunity to greatly improve the relationship with your loyal audience, as you will always keep them updated on the news of your company;
  • You will be able to more easily intercept your prospect , as using multiple social platforms at the same time, it will be easier to strike the interest of the latter;
  • You will improve your personal branding: it is useless to lie, to be actively present on social networks, it helps a lot your brand or that of your company;
  • You can take advantage of the social media marketing activity to increase traffic to your site or your blog, depending on the objective that is required of course;
  • You will be able to maintain relationships with your customer, also trying to investigate their satisfaction with your product or service;
  • You can begin to establish yourself as an expert or leader in your sector, by sharing always up-to-date content regarding your work and that of your company;
  • You can increase the possibility that your offer will be seen by your potential customer.

Added to this is the main advantage, which is that it is possible to obtain a ROI very high with paid advertising on Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin and others, in a much shorter time than only with organic activities.

Think for example if you sponsor an article on facebook; the latter, if obviously written well, can bring you a significant increase in visits to your site or blog in a short time.

You can do this with organic activities too, but the time is double if not triple. If you combine web marketing activities, such as SEO for example, with a well-built Facebook sponsored one, the return on your investment could even exceed expectations.

Examples of social media marketing

To make people understand what it means to do social media marketing well, there is nothing better than taking business as an example and showing you how they structure their communication on social media.

I’m going to bring you three examples of online businesses that in my opinion use social media marketing very well.

The first, for example, Freeda, is a project rather than a business, which I have been following since the beginning of its activity on social networks. Over time they have improved a lot and have managed to gather support even from well-known personalities, who often visit them for interviews on the female world.

Their contents are really very interesting and engaging and, this point, should not be taken for granted if you decide to communicate online.

The second is Weroad, a site dedicated to travel for singles, which communicates very well, but above all in an original way, on social media.

The third OceansApart, an e-commerce of sportswear for women, very present on social networks.

Let’s start with the first Freeda – a very interesting project, aimed mostly at the female world, aimed at communicating the concept of freedom as an essential value for a happy life.

Freeda – story Facebook

In this case the type of communication is very particular, because it aims to touch some complex issues and communicate them, however, in a very simple and immediate way. Freeda’s posts on social media create interaction, like and in some cases even create controversy, which is the spice of social media marketing.

I take Freeda for example because her communication activity is entirely based on the use of social media, so here social media marketing as an activity is absolutely primary and taken care of very, very good.

Let’s jump to Weroad – the main competitor of Adventure Travel in the world – totally dedicated to the travel industry for singles.

Weroad – Instagram

Also in this case I can say that I have witnessed the evolution of this brand , since I started to get interested in this type of travel before Weroad became known and went beyond Adventure Travel in the world – which many know. Their approach to social media is very immediate and direct.

Weroad – Facebook
Weroad – Instagram

In this case the social media marketing activity goes absolutely hand in hand with that of the site. They are very complementary to each other, as they are able to intercept a very large audience both through the site and through social media. Also in this case, studying the way in which Weroad does social media marketing can be very inspiring for those who work in the tourism sector.

Lastly, take for example OceansApart – a sportswear ecommerce that is becoming very popular in Italy as well. The target is female. I met this brand by chance, on Instagram and I was very impressed with the way it communicates.

OceansApart – Instagram
OceansApart – Instagram

Also in this case the social media marketing activity is essential to increase the target’s purchasing potential

Doing social media marketing well means having a real ace up your sleeve when it comes to communication.

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