What is Social Media Marketing (SMM)?

The term social media marketing (SMM) describes the use of social media and social networks to market a company’s products and services. Social media marketing gives companies the ability to connect with existing customers and reach new ones, while at the same time promoting their desired culture, mission, or tone.Social media marketing has purpose-built data analysis tools that marketers can use to track the success of their efforts.

The central theses

  • Social media marketing uses social media and social networks to market a company’s products and services.
  • It enables companies to connect with existing customers and reach new ones while promoting their culture, mission, or tone.
  • Websites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are widely used to conduct social media marketing.

How social media marketing (SMM) works

Social media has changed the way we function as a society, including the way we connect with one another. When platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram emerged, companies also took notice. They started using these websites to promote their interests through social media marketing. That’s because these websites are capable of changing consumer behavior.

Social media websites allow marketers to use a wide range of tactics and strategies to promote content and get people to engage with it. Many social networks allow users to provide detailed geographic, demographic, and personal information that enables marketers to tailor their messages to what is most likely to resonate with users.

According to Buffer, there are five main pillars of social media marketing:

  • Strategy: This step defines goals, the social media channels to use, and the type of content shared.
  • Planning and publication: Businesses should make plans for what their content will look like (i.e. will there be videos? Photos? How much script?) And decide when to post it on the platform.
  • Listening and engagement: Monitor what users, customers, and others are saying about the posts, brands, and other business assets. This may require the introduction of a social media engagement tool.
  • Analysis and reporting: To be on social media, knowing how far the posts go is a part of it, so reports of engagement and reach are very important
  • Advertising: Buying ads on social media is a great way to promote and develop a brand.

Because audiences can be segmented better than more traditional marketing channels, companies can ensure that they focus their resources on the audience they want to target with social media marketing. Some of the metrics used to measure the success of social media marketing (also known as digital marketing and e-marketing) include:

  • Website reports such as Google Analytics
  • Return on Investment (ROI)
  • Customer response rates, or the frequency with which customers post about a company
  • Reach and / or virality of a campaign or how many customers share content

Even in the digital age, people value a human touch, so don’t just leave things to social media to get the word out.

Special considerations

An important strategy in social media marketing is to develop messages and content that individual users share with their family, friends, and colleagues. This strategy is based on word of mouth and has several advantages. First, it increases the reach of the message to networks and users that a social media manager might otherwise not have been able to access. Second, shared content carries an implicit endorsement when sent by someone the recipient knows and trusts.

Social media strategy involves creating content that is sticky. This means that it attracts a user’s attention and increases the likelihood that they will take a desired action, such as buying a product or sharing the content with others on their own network.

Marketers create viral content that is meant to spread quickly between users.Social media marketing should also encourage customers to create and share their own content such as product reviews or comments. This is known as earned media in the marketing industry.

Advantages and disadvantages of social media marketing (SMM)

Social media marketing campaigns have the advantage that they address a broad audience at the same time. For example, a campaign can target current and potential customers, employees, bloggers, the media, the general public, and other stakeholders such as external reviewers or trade groups.

But these campaigns can also create obstacles that companies might not otherwise have to deal with. For example, a viral video claiming that a company’s product is making consumers sick needs to be addressed by the company whether the claim is true or false. Even if a company can get the message right, consumers may buy less from the company in the future.