1. Background of the Study
Social media is the latest trend that has already enticed the world with its adoptability to the market trends. Today it is sighted as one of the New Media channels which has already proved itself as an effective tool in spreading news and generating interest. A lot of advertisers are using the platforms to reach to their target buyers and influence their buying behavior. Facebook is already filled with advertisements in the form of paid and non paid formats. It has a separate marketing platform for the Advertisers. Also with the millions of people staying connected through the website 24X7 has lead to greater exposure to advertisements and promotional messages. Hence Facebook is the foremost social media platform which has provided marketers with a highly segmented and specialized opportunity to reach to the consumers. It is now to assess whether the platform is potent enough to influence buying behavior like its contemporaries (Bullas, 2012).
2. Aims and Objectives of the Research
The aim of the research is to find out the role that Facebook as a social media channel as a marketing media vehicle. Also to determine the extent it is effective in influencing consumer behavior and the buying process.
The Objectives of the Research are:
- To make a study on social media as a marketing tool
- To make a study on Facebook as the most significant social media channel
- To assess the efficiency of Facebook as a marketing platform
- To analyze the process through which Facebook is utilized to mold buying behavior
- To analyze the process of measuring the efficiency of the strength of the social media channel in the marketing scenario
- To analyze the impact of Facebook as a social media channel in marketing compared to other media channels
- To analyze and assess the scope of Facebook in future growth in the marketing sector.
3. Research Hypothesis
Hypothesis 1: Facebook as a Social media is the new age platform for influencing the consumer buying behavior.
Hypothesis 1A: Social media is more potent than the rest of the media vehicle in influencing buying behavior.
Hypothesis 1B: Facebook is more potent in influencing buying behavior than all other social media channels.
Hypothesis 1C: Facebook as a social media provides different environment for influencing buying behavior.
Hypothesis 2: Facebook is potent in influencing consumer behavior only to the younger generation.
Hypothesis 3A: It is only the young adults and teenagers who could be influenced by marketing through Facebook.
4. Literature Review
Advertising is the non personal yet paid form of promotion to influence the purchase decision of the consumers. (Tuten, 2008) says that change in the advertising landscape is more visible in the online scenario and hence in the social media. Facebook as a social media has an array of items like Social Graph, custom audience’s interest analysis which derives strategies to influence the buying decisions, behaviors on the sites (TasÌ§kÄ±ran and Yilmaz, 2015).
Buying behavior is often the result of social influences and it is thus the forces that other people exerts that often (Pride and Ferrell, 2014). Hence Facebook is the platform where a person is exposed to the choices and interests of others who belong to their friends group, family or peers. Their product choice makes the others believe in the brand. The options of sharing and liking posts make sure that the message is spread (Lamb, Hair and McDaniel, 2013). It is thus the most effective medium to influence buying behavior through reference groups, social sharing, and social proofing and search optimization methods. As seen it is thus the younger generation who are more influenced by such kind of pressures.
5. Research Methodology
The method of collecting data and used both qualitative and quantitative approach. A number of surveys were conducted among the youth and middle aged to gauge their views on the Facebook as an advertising medium. Social media experts were interviewed and their views regarding the same are documented. The secondary research consisted of searching Facebook advertisement data and the evaluation of campaigns that had succeeded from the platforms. A number of theories are to be applied to statistically derive the data which is to be analyzed on the basis of behavior rationales and environment provided finally the collective data is to be compiled to provide a clear distinct solution of the hypothesis.
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Bullas, J. (2012). 5 Reasons Why Facebook Drives Consumer Buying - Infographic. [online] Jeffbullas's Blog. Available at: https://www.jeffbullas.com/2012/04/02/5-reasons-why-facebook-drives-consumer-buying-infographic/ [Accessed 16 Jul. 2015].
Lamb, C., Hair, J. and McDaniel, C. (2013). MKTG 7. Mason, Ohio: South-Western.
Pride, W. and Ferrell, O. (n.d.). Foundations of marketing.
TasÌ§kÄ±ran, N. and Yilmaz, R. (n.d.). Handbook of research on effective advertising strategies in the social media age.
Tuten, T. (2008). Advertising 2.0. Westport, Conn.: Praeger.