What is social media? If you are somebody who blogs a lot, loves reading blogs or has a website, you probably already know the answer to this question. But, as I’ve recently discovered, there are many businesses that are in the dark when it comes to this phenomenon. In fact, several friends of mine have told me that the high-powered companies they work for are beginning to ak what a “tweet” is.
That, however, is about to change. In a New York Times article Vindu Goel said, “the venerable Wall Street Journal will activate a revamped version of its Web site, WSJ.com, early Tuesday morning,” and “one aspect of the redesign is radical, and if it’s successful, it could provide lessons for other news organizations trying to build deeper connections with their readers: New community features will allow WSJ.com’s million or so paid online subscribers to comment on every story, pose their own discussion questions, e-mail one another and set up profiles that will allow others to see what they’re doing on the site.” That, my friends, is social media. But it isn’t just news outlets that are starting to take notice, businesses of all kinds are jumping aboard, especially any business that has a website or blog.
Search Engine Watch defines social media as “a category of wesites that is based on user participation and user-generated content. They include social networking sites like LinkedIn or Facebook, social bookmarking sites like Del.icio.us, social news sites like Digg or Reddit, and other sites that are centered on user interaction.” So in case you haven’t noticed, Facebook aint just for kids anymore, it’s serious business. In fact, anybody that has a website or blog that promotes their product and/or services is missing out on free marketing opportunities, if they aren’t engaged in social media forums.
Besides the social media sites mentioned above, there is also twitter and stumbleupon . The basic idea is the same for all of them, sharing information and promoting your business website or blog, but they work in slightly different ways. I will go into more detail about each one in upcoming posts. For now the important thing is to learn what you can about social media and figure out how to utilize it to your advantage.
This article has just skimmed the surface, so if i’ve left any important information out, or you have insight to share, please leave a comment and tell me what you have to say.