This question comes up several times a week, without fail. There is a reason for this: ‘social media’ has become a throwaway, collect-all generalisation for just about any information (written or graphic) that is loaded on the web.
My interpretation of ‘social media’ is services like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and quite a lengthy host of others. All are magnificent tools to engage the general public and help centre on sectors that would have some level of interest in what your business does. Word can quickly spread.
Then there are content-driven weapons which seem to get lumped in the same bucket purely because they are online, yet their purpose and effect can be quite different.
What I refer to here is authoritative content over which you have 100% control in its message, its delivery systems and the tracking of its engagement to provide market intelligence for sales staff.
‘Social media’ is more or less a less a go-to term used by the less informed to whom anything on the internet is social media.
There is a distinct difference. The real power, and one which gives you 100% control over what you say to the open market, is content-based thought pieces which can do wonders for sales directors wanting to generate new leads and for marketing managers trying to manage job overoad (click here to see a document specifically on this last point).
Not only leads, but also a lot of market respect because when you are openly discussing issues that impact your potential clients and are seen to be doing so in a way that is informative rather than didactic, it’s amazing how much trust you can engineer as a market expert.
Yes, social media is very important, but the term often waters down the definition of other content based marketing streams which are arguably more powerful.
So, our advice for now? Put aside the generic go-to definition, have a read of the free e-book below, and consider just how global your voice can be in front of your very market and with a little bit of effort can be driving attention and potential new business to your company