Social media marketing is one of the fastest growing areas of online advertising. It has grown rapidly from a niche sector into one of the most important digital marketing disciplines for one simple reason - the explosive rise of social media portals like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Flickr, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Further reading: Search engine marketing | Link baiting and viral marketing | SEO Manchester

The rise of social media

Given the incredible power and potential of social media marketing we decided it was best to provide our clients with an expert service, from a team with years of experience in the field. That's why we've partnered with Juice Digital, another award-winning agency, to make sure our clients get a seamlessly integrated search engine optimisation and social media marketing product.

Juice Digital was set up in 2008 as a dedicated social media agency, setting it apart from digital rivals who rushed to create in-house social media teams after the boom in sites like Facebook and Twitter. All of Juice's staff have specialist experience in running social media and online PR campaigns, meaning you can be assured of receiving an expert service from an agency which isn't just 'playing at' this exciting new form of marketing.

The rise of social media

To see how far social media has come, it's worth reviewing the statistics. Data from web trends tracker Hitwise shows that the number of UK internet visits to Facebook doubled in the 14 months to September 2009. Facebook is now far and away the most heavily used website in the UK, accounting for more than one in seven page views.

But Facebook's success is by no means unique. Video-sharing social media site YouTube is the fourth most visited website in the country, while youth-oriented social networking portal Bebo ranks seventh.

Social media advertising

With such phenomenal uptake, it's no surprise that advertisers are taking note. Approximately 13.8 billion display ads were shown on social networking sites in August 2009, according to figures from digital marketing specialist comScore. And the same study pointed out that this represents one in four of all online display ad impressions.

The benefits of social media marketing

But social media marketing is about much more than just serving up display ads. These sites offer theEword's clients unrivalled opportunities to engage directly with consumers, build brand loyalty and drive conversions.

On Facebook, for example, theEword has helped companies run groups to raise awareness of new products, while placing ads in popular apps to get the brand talked about. Meanwhile, we have built Twitter accounts around recognisable mascots and figureheads. This has helped businesses get instant feedback from customers and build conversations around the brand.

We have also managed MySpace pages and Flickr photo groups for the purposes of facilitating user engagement. Moreover, theEword has enlisted customers to spread branded content by launching successful viral marketing campaigns on YouTube. For more detailed information about previous campaigns, theEword can be contacted through phone, email or on professional social networking service LinkedIn.

Metrics for social media marketing

There are many ways to measure the performance of social media marketing campaigns. To take just one example, we have sparked conversations on Twitter, which can then be tracked using tools such as Trendistic, TweetStats and Tweetmeme. And our Google Analytics expertise allows us to see how many site visitors came from Twitter, their bounce rates and whether or not they converted. Our in-house design team can then display all this data in easy-to-understand tables and graphs.

Social media marketing adspend

Social media marketing is growing at a remarkable rate. According to figures from industry analysts The Nielsen Company, there was a 119 per cent year-on-year rise in social media adspend in August 2009 and that trend shows no sign of slowing.

However, if your company has yet to implement a social media marketing strategy, it is not too late to get started with theEword. More than anywhere else, creative is king here because consumers must be inspired to get involved and spread the word through viral marketing. The upside of this is that even a relative latecomer can corner the market with innovative ideas and a well-executed strategy. Alternatively, if you're an established player, theEword knows how to take your social media marketing strategy to the next level.

If you would like to find out more about social media marketing and theEword,
please call our MD Al Mackin on 0161 848 4300 or contact us online.
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