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Effectiveness of Social Media in Marketing Activities

Question:

Discuss about the effectiveness of the use of Social Media in the Marketing activities along with determining the limitations of the Concept.

Technology is one of the key factors that are having huge contribution in changing the existing business scenario for the contemporary business organizations. In the current state of affairs, business organizations initiate the use of technologies in enhancing the convenience of their customers along with gaining competitive advantages in the market (Nguyen, Newby & Macaulay, 2015). One of the key and effective technologies being used by the contemporary business organizations is the social media. In the recent times, social media emerged as one of the key effective tools for the business organizations for enhancing their marketing activities. This is due to the reason that use of social media for the marketing activities will help the business organizations in effectively engaging with their target customers (Erdogmus & Cicek, 2012). This essay will discuss about the effectiveness of the use of social media in the marketing activities along with determining the limitations of the concept.

Contemporary business organizations have to compete and operate in the intensely competitive business environment due to the having the presence of competitors operating in the similar sector (Mithas, Tafti & Mitchell, 2013). Thus, engaging the customers along with effectively determining the requirement of the customers is having much importance for the business organizations. Thus, business organizations initiate various tools and procedures in order to effectively engage with the customers. In this case, social media will be beneficial for the business organizations. This is due to the reason that, involvement of social media such as Twitter and Facebook will help the business organizations to engage with their target customers effectively. As stated by Bashar, Ahmad and Wasiq (2012), involvement of social media as marketing tool will be beneficial due to the reason that, it involves two way communications. According to the authors, social media marketing involves two way communications mechanism, where both the customers and the organizations can able to communicate with each other effectively. For instance, social media such as Facebook will enable the business organizations to advertise their products or services along with attracting the live responses from the probable customers. Customers will have the opportunity to provide their feedback regarding the advertised offerings in the social media. Afterwards, business organizations can communicate with the particular respondent to further determining his requirement and expectation (Gu & Ye, 2014).

Market Potentiality of Social Media


Thus, with the help of the social media advertising or marketing, business organizations will have the opportunity to gather the feedback from their target market and accordingly modifying the products to meet the latest requirement. In addition, the authors also stated that, initiation of these engagements will have positive impact on enhancing the loyalty and satisfaction level of the customers. This is due to the reason that, initiation of modifying the customer offerings according to the gathered feedback will help the organization to meet the market requirement effectively. Moreover, according to the authors, the more be the engagement with the customers, the more will be brand awareness among the target market. Thus, having more brand awareness will have positive impact for the potential of the business.

As discussed earlier, contemporary business organizations have to compete in intensely competitive market scenario. Thus, with having strategies for retaining the existing customers, they also need to attract more number of new customers in order to increase their market presence and share. Moreover, the more will be the market share and market presence, the more will be the brand awareness among the potential customers. In this case also, initiation of the social media for marketing activities will be beneficial for the business organizations. This is due to the reason that, in the recent time, it is being reported that majority of the present generation is spending more time in social media. Thus, the market potentiality in the social media is more compared to the use of the traditional media. According to Singh, Lehnert and Bostick (2012), with the increase in the internet connectivity around the world, more people are connecting in the social media. Thus, the market size in the social media is rapidly increasing. Thus, involving of social media for the marketing activities will help the business organizations to target more number of the potential customers. The advertisement that they initiate in the social media will be visible to million of the customers around the world.

Figure:1 Social media usage

Source: (Mannino, 2017)

As discussed earlier, effective relationship between the buyer and the seller is important to gain competitive advantages in the market. This is due to the reason that, initiation of the building effective relationship by the business organizations with their customers helps in effective and timely determination of the market requirement along with enhancing the customer loyalty. According to Sashi (2012), social media is one of the most effective tools in building the customer relationship due to the direct interaction between the both parties. Thus, the more will be the effective relationship between the seller and buyer, the more will be loyalty of the brand among its target customers. Initiation of the social media marketing will help the business organizations to directly engage and interact with the customers along with determining the change in the taste and preference pattern of the customers (Reinhold & Alt, 2012).

Building Effective Customer Relationship

Initiation of the marketing activities by the contemporary business organizations involves huge cost due to the fact that, to attract customers from among the various competitors, extensive marketing activities are required. Thus, it is important for the business organizations to reduce the cost involved in the marketing activities along with enhancing the effectiveness. In this case, social media marketing is the most effective form of marketing. According to Castronovo and Huang (2012), initiation of the social media marketing involves much lesser cost compared to the traditional and conventional marketing medium. This is due to the fact that, in the case of the initiation of the traditional marketing medium, various intermediaries are being involved, which further increase the marketing cost.


On the other hand, social media marketing will involve only posting the advertisements in the social media platforms, which will automatically being communicated and made visible to the huge online customers around the world. According to the authors, initiation of the social media marketing will only involve subscription charge for the particular social media platform. Thus, according to them, it will less cost compared to the traditional media along with communicating with more number of potential customers. This is another key advantage of initiation of social media marketing.

Though there are various advantages being discussed above in this essay, still social media marketing have several limitations as well. One of the key limitations is the transmission of negative word of mouth. According to Pfeffer, Zorbach and Carley (2014), initiation of social media marketing also involves word of mouth from the potential customers. However, in case of the negative word of mouth, the business potentiality as well as the goodwill and reputation will be at stake. For instance, if a particular customer is dissatisfied with the online advertising or offering of the organization, then he will communicate it with his peers in the social media, which will spread among other and at the end the market reputation of the particular organization will be affected.


Another disadvantage of social media marketing is the time and resource being involved in maintaining the marketing activities. According to Schlinke and Crain (2013), initiation of social media marketing will attract various legal complications and the organizations have to adhere with that. Moreover, the business organization opting for social media marketing also has to maintain a team of experts who will manage the social media of the organization and will answer to the queries of the customers. Thus, for the small business organizations, it will be difficult to maintain the required resources for the social media marketing along with changing the approach of the marketing according to the change in the market scenario.

Cost Reduction in Marketing Activities

Another key limitation of initiating the social media marketing is the less trustworthiness among the customers. This is due to the fact that, with the emergence of various scams and fraudulent activities in the social media marketing, customers are now less influenced with this concept. Thus, the effectiveness of the social media marketing is reducing. According to Vinerean, Cetina, Dumitrescu and Tichindelean (2013), customer behavior for the online and offline marketing is different and it is being seen that the social media marketing is having positive market penetration rate but it is not that effective in influencing the customer behavior. Thus, according to the authors, the effectiveness of the social media marketing is more of a myth than being practical.

Conclusion

Thus from the above discussion it is being concluded that, social media marketing is having both advantages as well as disadvantages for the business organizations. All the relevant and major merits and demerits are being discussed in this essay. Moreover, it can also be concluded that, with the emergence of technological revolution in the current business scenario, social media marketing should be initiated. However, the limitations should be avoided in order to enhance the effectiveness of the social media marketing.

References

Bashar, A., Ahmad, I., & Wasiq, M. (2012). Effectiveness of social media as a marketing tool: An empirical study. International Journal of Marketing, Financial Services & Management Research, 1(11), 88-99.

Castronovo, C., & Huang, L. (2012). Social media in an alternative marketing communication model. Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness, 6(1), 117.

Erdo?mu?, ?. E., & Cicek, M. (2012). The impact of social media marketing on brand loyalty. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 58, 1353-1360.

Gu, B., & Ye, Q. (2014). First step in social media: Measuring the influence of online management responses on customer satisfaction. Production and Operations Management, 23(4), 570-582.

Mannino, N. (2017). Survey: Social Media Usage Statistics. [online] CreditDonkey. Available at: https://www.creditdonkey.com/social-media-usage-statistics.html [Accessed 26 Oct. 2017].

Mithas, S., Tafti, A., & Mitchell, W. (2013). How a Firm's Competitive Environment and Digital Strategic Posture Influence Digital Business Strategy. MIS quarterly, 37(2).

Nguyen, T. H., Newby, M., & Macaulay, M. J. (2015). Information technology adoption in small business: Confirmation of a proposed framework. Journal of Small Business Management, 53(1), 207-227.

Pfeffer, J., Zorbach, T., & Carley, K. M. (2014). Understanding online firestorms: Negative word-of-mouth dynamics in social media networks. Journal of Marketing Communications, 20(1-2), 117-128.

Reinhold, O., & Alt, R. (2012, June). Social Customer Relationship Management: State of the Art and Learnings from Current Projects. In Bled eConference (p. 26).

Sashi, C. M. (2012). Customer engagement, buyer-seller relationships, and social media. Management decision, 50(2), 253-272.

Schlinke, J., & Crain, S. (2013). Social media from an integrated marketing and compliance perspective. Journal of Financial Service Professionals, 67(2).

Singh, N., Lehnert, K., & Bostick, K. (2012). Global social media usage: Insights into reaching consumers worldwide. Thunderbird International Business Review, 54(5), 683-700.

Vinerean, S., Cetina, I., Dumitrescu, L., & Tichindelean, M. (2013). The effects of social media marketing on online consumer behavior. International Journal of Business and Management, 8(14), 66.

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