(Online) Social networking is the interaction of groups of individuals via services like Facebook, Twitter, and others.
By being simply present in conversations relevant to your industry you can build brand/product recognition that acts as a preparation for future sales.
Besides staying in contact via telephone calls, emails or maybe instant messaging, people can share information about themselves to a select group of people or, in a very general broadcasting manner, to the world. Web sites like Facebook and Twitter give people young and old, computer savvy or not, the simple type it and hit enter tools they need to publish their experiences, thoughts and opinions.
Just like offline, online social networks form around communality; family, friends, co-workers, specific industries or interests, etc.
How Is Social Networking Different
Where telephone calls, emails and instant messaging are one-to-one media, online social networking generally is one-to-many.
The tremendous existing popularity of online social networking and its continued society-wide uptake means the networks are fast and efficient in sharing and spreading information.
Where it would once take Tom 3 to 4 weeks before he had shared his opinion about a movie with all his friends it now takes minutes to hours " if that long.
How Does Social Networking Play Into My Business
In the traditional model, which remains valid and relevant too, you ensure youre seen at the right conferences, have a stand at the trade shows that matter. You build relations with prospects, customers, suppliers.
Social networks are the new right conferences; you need to have a stand at the trade shows that everyday online social networking can be at times.
You need to be present.
By being present and injecting yourself into the right conversations without being an obnoxious seller, you create (brand) awareness.
Through your type of presence you create and leave an impression about your company, products and brand.
Together these shape future (business) relations the same way traditional offline networking would " but at a much, much larger scale.
With the need for physical presence removed (travel) and coupled to the enormous scale of social networks, online social marketing through social networks is not only effective but tremendously efficient.