The growth of social networking sites over the past few years is phenomenal. For the first time, the term “social network” was used to characterize one’s interactions with other people on online platforms. Users have started to define themselves and communicate with other users from different cultures in the internet environment, and they are still expressing their feelings and thoughts virtually with symbols that symbolize gestures and mimics used in normal social life. As a result, the term “social network” occurred. When we think of social networking sites today, we think of websites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, to name a few.
The majority of social networking sites are created with a specific aim in mind. The major goal of Facebook, for example, is to allow you to engage with people you know in real life. The goal of LinkedIn as a professional business network is to provide you with a business and project-based social networking experience.
Today’s most popular social networking sites include Facebook (a social media platform that allows you to communicate with people you know), Pinterest (a social networking site with an image-sharing component that allows users to share all types of photographs and operates with a board system), Instagram (a social media platform that allows you to share photographs and connect to some online trading activities), Twitter (a social networking service where you can communicate with and interact with celebrities), YouTube (a video-sharing and engagement tool for social media users).
The Reason for Social Networking Sites to Appear
The first known social networking site in history emerged in 1994. The purpose of this site, called Geocities, was to enable people to create their websites in one of the 6 cities. In 1995, heglobe.com was established. In this social network, people interacted with others by publishing their own content. Such platforms have allowed users to share their knowledge and experience with others. Thus, people can communicate with each other through this social network. These sites also help users learn about many topics and improve themselves.
Social networking sites historically began to appear in 1979 when Tom Truscott and Jim Ellis of Duke University introduced Usenet, a discussion system that allows internet users around the world to post public messages. However, the origins of social media in its current sense begin with the “Open Diary” website, an early social networking site founded by Bruce and Susan Abelson in 1989 that brought together online diarists as a community. In the same period, the concept of Weblog was used for the first time and a year later, the concept of blog emerged when bloggers jokingly used the term Weblog as a web blog. With the increase in the use of high-speed internet access and the proliferation of social networking sites such as Myspace in 2003 and Facebook in 2004, the popularity of social media increased and took its current form.
After these inventions, thanks to technological developments, social networking services have become a concept that is widely used in the 21st century. The proliferation of social networking sites has led to changes in people’s thinking and living standards and these sites have become increasingly common as the channels where virtual communities come together, share and communicate.
Common Features of Social Networking Sites
There are many social networking sites available today. Although these networks differ from each other in many aspects, in general, all of them allow their users to share. Thus, content, image, or video shared by a person can easily spread around the world. Moreover; social networking sites are all created to cover the internet and mobile devices. On such platforms, users have their own unique content and slogans. As a result, the retention rate of such posts is quite high. Additionally, social networks are generally shaped by users because of the reality of big data.
Everything You Need to Know About Growth of Social Networking Sites
The use of social networks is a significant phenomenon that has progressed through the adaption process and now has very high rates. Various studies on the persistence of social network users are conducted in a broad scope. With its interactivity features and ease of use, new platforms that evolved as a result of advancements in network and computer technologies have given people more influence over previous technology. These new technologies have been adopted and disseminated at a faster rate than people’s understanding of how to use them.
Social networking sites are mainly online communities where people with similar interests and goals may share information and socialize. Furthermore, these communities are regarded as sources of information. With its vast and diverse information structure, the Internet serves as the foundation for social networks. This data covers a wide range of topics, including “health,” “money,” “education,” “transportation,” and “care services.” Individuals can interact with content on social networks and they can also interact with other people. As a result, social networking sites have become essential social platforms.
Sharing and Collaborating in Social Networks
When users share information on social networks, they may have certain goals in mind. These goals include “collaborating with people for common goals, gaining information or learning benefits, and developing relationships with others,” among others. People share information on their social network feeds. Some may do so to share interesting facts, to remain in touch with their friends, to organize a charity event, and for other reasons why people share information.
Aside from these reasons, these sites also provide an opportunity for companies to do their marketing and advertising activities. It is possible to mention the growth and evolution of social networks. At the onset, social media marketing efforts are less as the use of the internet and smartphones are low. The conversion rate of social media ads to sales was quite low. However, as the use of smartphones becomes prevalent and access to the internet becomes widespread, resulting in an increased interest in social marketing.
The increase in mobile usage over time, consumers’ orientation to online shopping, and many different advertising models and ad management tools offered by social networks to advertisers also affect the performance of these ads. As a result of this, social networking sites have started to increase the return of even more important advertisements to sales. In addition to advertisements on social networks, organic marketing activities make it possible to reach consumers with low budgets.
Advantages of Social Networking Sites
The development of technology and the use of technological tools by many have undoubtedly led to the development and growth of social networking sites. This growth is actually quite significant. Because the perception of social media has changed and this has enabled the development of many sectors. Furthermore; these sites have started to offer great advantages for social media management.
Market dominance and increasing its share
When used correctly, social networks also play an important role in increasing market dominance and market share. Additionally,
- increasing consumers’ trust in the brand,
- being able to communicate well with consumers,
- increasing product awareness,
- and increasing the brand’s dominance and share in the market also plays an important role.
It is important therefore to create a strong social media strategy.
Social referral traffic
Social networking sites also play an important role in driving traffic to your website. During the day, users spend most of their time on social networks, and one can attract social referral traffic to your website with content or advertising campaigns that will attract the attention of users here. In addition to organic traffic from search engines, attracting traffic from social networks increases your chances of reaching more people and helps you increase your conversions. Especially if you are a new venture, it may take time for your SEO efforts to yield results, and therefore you may not be able to attract enough traffic from search engines.
Increasing your mobile trading volume
The advertising efforts of brands on social networks have contributed to the increase in mobile commerce volume in general. Users started to shop by visiting websites on their smartphones. This results in the importance of mobile-friendly and user experience designs on the mobile site. As it also increases the mobile traffic of the company’s e-commerce site. In order to be able to manage and recycle traffic from mobile, you need to have a mobile-friendly site design and provide a good experience to users.
Marketing opportunity with low costs
Social networks are not just about preparing advertising campaigns. You can create interaction on social networks and drive traffic to your website organically at no extra cost. You can interact with your followers by sharing organically on your social media accounts. By preparing a social media content calendar, and sharing on certain days of the week (it is recommended to make at least one post every day when it comes to sharing frequency), you can regularly attract traffic from social networks organically, maintaining your continuity. In addition to attracting traffic, these content studies are also beneficial for building an audience and communicating.
Talking about your brand more often
As your activities on social networks increase and your visibility increases. Furthermore, you can also enable consumers to share more about your brand. Especially when you produce content that may be of interest to them, users will share this content with their circles. This will increase the number of posts about your brand. In order to increase your visibility on the Internet, users must also share your content. You can also work to achieve this with the content you produce.
Sharing the brand’s vision and story
Social networks also play an important role in sharing your brand’s identity, vision and story. Since the greatest power of social media lies in being a communication channel, how you communicate with it and how strong this communication is in your hands as a brand. When you establish the right communication, you can clearly tell your vision and convey your story to people correctly. You should remember that these channels are communication channels and you should build your shares on this element.
Increasing brand and product awareness
Another effect of social networking sites is that they help to increase brand and product awareness. As we mentioned above, since these channels are communication channels, you can increase the awareness of your brand or products through your communication campaigns and the communication or interaction you have with consumers. These channels also have a great impact on the branding process.
Reaching new customer bases
While working to increase brand and product awareness, you can reach new target audiences on social networks. You can target different audiences that may be related to your brand in the targeting of your ad campaigns. Popular sites such as Facebook and Instagram has settings that you can configure to target a certain demographic. In addition, you can use these targeting tools to reach new audiences that are similar to your current audience.
In its infancy, social networking sites are no more than a virtual place to hang out and share personal stories. Today, these social sites are not only a virtual place to hang out but also a place where one can sell and buy products or services. In this sense, it is true that social media has undergone a major evolution.
So how can you benefit from this important evolution and what can you do by using social media? Let’s take a look at some steps together!
1- Get Organized in Your Business by Creating a Plan!
A social networking plan is a very important thing for all businesses. This is especially true if they’re doing social media and want to reach their customers by directly communicating from there. In general, corporations plan a variety of things based on their company needs. Examples are the number of shares each month and sharing language, advertising expenses, and hashtag planning. Social media plans are very important for you to follow the posts you will make in a month regularly. If you want to attract new clients and retain existing ones, you need to develop a social media strategy. Keep your communication in the framework of this social networking plan.
2- Reach More People with Ad Management!
Companies perform advertisement management for the shares they make at certain intervals in order to reach more people and to appeal to more people with their shares within the framework of a certain social media plan. Since advertisements are usually made on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube, they reach people who use these social media platforms easily. You can advertise here to reach a larger audience to promote your company and supply your items to more people.
3- Manage Your Analysis Process Well!
Users of social media accounts that share on social media platforms or advertise for their postings should do a thorough examination of their posts and adverts. Analyze your social media posts on a monthly, weekly, and daily basis. Because a social media analysis will make it easier for you to make a decision for the next month and will allow you to follow your social media process easily.
4- Take Power in Social Media!
Companies that sell products and services through e-commerce should benefit from all the dynamics of social networking. To benefit from the dynamics of social media, it is critical to incorporate social media modules into your e-commerce platform. By using the social media marketing and conversion tracking modules, you can easily analyze your e-commerce site and make quick decisions and make more effective social media management.
5- Benefit from Social Media Assistants!
With the development of technology, social media, and social media management, new tools have emerged. One of them is social media assistants. For example, Socialays understands, analyzes, and reacts to comments made in real-time. It also measures social media performances thanks to reports and insights. It is possible to say it is a platform that truly gives a clear view of what the audience thinks. You can visit Socialays to review and learn more about its features.
Social networking sites are now a part of everyday life. The intensive use of social networking sites contributed to greater service accessibility around the world. Besides users, social media has also become an indispensable and valuable resource for people who want to make a promotion or sale. Even today, when you open a social network site page, it is mostly possible to encounter many e-commerce activities.