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Effectiveness of social media market in India

“New marketing is about the relationships, not about medium” - Ben Grossman. This research would be aimed measure the effectiveness of the Social Media marketing through social networks (Facebook, Twitter..etc). The contemporary view of the social media from a media planner’s perspective has evolved over time. The social media has recently been employed by marketers, as an integral media component. Social media has traditionally been viewed narrowly as a complementary medium by media planners. Today, this parochial view of the social media changing based favorable demographic trends and the realization of the way in which most consumers get their information in terms of the Reach, Accessibility, Usability, Recency, Permanence, these are the determinants considered for this survey.

Usually the social media is said to have three components which are as follows;

i. Concept (art, information, or meme).

ii. Media (physical, electronic, or verbal).

iii. Social interface (intimate direct, community engagement, social viral, electronic broadcast or syndication, or other physical media such as print).

Social media is a sort of media designed to create social interaction among individuals and this social interaction is highly accessible by external sources and companies while publishing sources can alse access this data. The more famous online networks like MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, and LinkedIn represent the majority portion of the competition while twitter has been an addition that has become famous in recent years. These sites are a source for mutual interaction among individuals while also provide a chance for dating, activities and social networking. These networks are a major driving force online and are a great challenge and an opportunity for marketers while it all depends on how it is presumed. This opportunity has been taken on hand by many while some are still catching up.

The goal of marketers interested in creating successful viral marketing programs is to identify individuals with high Social Networking and create Viral Messages that appeal to this segment of the population and have a high probability of being taken by another competitor.

The purpose of conducting this research is to find out the effectiveness of social media marketing in terms of the selected determinants through the social networking marketing and find out is it rising as a viral marketing technique.

The sample size calculated for this research would be 135 respondents in the Indian market. The QUESTIONAIRE would be designed to measure the responses of the 135 respondents about the social media marketing through social networks. The analysis is planned to be done by using correlation, multiple regressions and cross tabulation.

This research is aimed addresses some issues for the corporations and the social media at one platform. The marketing opportunity is there while we are there to explore it at hand. A great amount of value can be extracted out of this opportunity and this if both for the corporations and the social networking sites. There are marked advantages to the embracing of new formats for consumer interaction: “brands increase consumer loyalty by involving their customers in their decision-making processes, and the research provides substantial profiling intelligence as a basis for sales and marketing decisions” (Online communities, 2009, p. 13).

Introduction

“Online applications, platforms and media which aim to facilitate interaction, collaboration and the sharing of content”.

Social media is a sort of media designed to create social interaction among individuals and this social interaction is highly accessible by external sources and companies while publishing sources can alse access this data. The more famous online networks like MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, and LinkedIn represent the majority portion of the competition while twitter has been an addition that has become famous in recent years. These sites are a source for mutual interaction among individuals while also provide a chance for dating, activities and social networking. These networks are a major driving force online and are a great challenge and an opportunity for marketers while it all depends on how it is presumed. This opportunity has been taken on hand by many while some are still catching up.

Social media can be said to have three components;

i. Concept (art, information, or meme).

ii. Media (physical, electronic, or verbal).

iii. Social interface (intimate direct, community engagement, social viral, electronic broadcast or syndication, or other physical media such as print).

Common forms of social media;

Concepts, slogans, and statements with a high memory retention quotient, that excites others to repeat.

Grass-Roots direct action information dissemination such as public speaking, installations, performance, and demonstrations.

Electronic media with 'sharing', syndication, or search algorithm technologies (includes internet and mobile devices).

Print media, designed to be re-distributed.

The term "Social media" came into existence since the creation of LinkedIn social network application in the year 2004. It was more popped up since 2006. At that time, this Wikipedia article on "social media" defined it as a term "used to describe media which are formed mainly by the public as a group, in a social way, rather than media produced by journalists, editors and media conglomerates." 

Online networks like MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, and LinkedIn are then most promising social networks there now while twitter has been a recent addition to the list. They not only provide the opportunity to interact with one another but also are a genuine source of being among gamers, activity partners and people of mutual interest. Usually it starts with creating your own profile page and then continues with finding friends around you.

Social networking as a major force on the Internet represents the greatest opportunity and challenge to marketers since the advent of the Internet itself. In the larger eco-system, social networking and UGC sites have provided high-value advertising inventory and audience segments needed to capture more of the market share and targeted audience reach that advertisers demand, e.g. Microsoft’s investment in Facebook, Google’s acquisition of YouTube, and News Corps.’ acquisition of MySpace.

A number of firms now offer services that allow you to place your Web ads next to relevant conversations, or identify those Web sites that cost frequently discuss your product or category in the most favorable terms.

Research Objective

“The purpose of conducting this research is to find out the effectiveness of social media marketing in terms of the selected determinants through the social networking marketing and find out is it rising as a viral marketing technique”.

Short Literature Review

In company perception, brand awareness and communication, the balance of power has shifted from the company to the consumer through the rebirth of word of mouth marketing (Datta, Chowdhury and Chakraborty, 2005) through new media formats (Ferguson, 2008). As a result of the empowered customer (Barnes, Cass, Getgood, Gillin, and Gossieaux, 2008), it has become imperative that companies who desire long term profitability, increased sales and customer loyalty embrace the new media technologies that are changing the way communication and information sharing occur (Clifford-Marsh, 2009).

Empowered by online social technologies such as blogs, social networking sites like MySpace, user-generated content sites like You Tube and countless communities across the Web, customers are now connecting with and drawing power from one another. They’re defining their own perspective on companies and brands, a view that’s often at odds with the image a company wants to project. This groundswell of people using technologies to get the things they need from one another, rather than from companies, is now tilting the balance of power from company to customer (Bernoff and Li, 2008, p. 36).

This research is centered on an analysis of what new media is, coupled with an in-depth study of current new media opportunities including viral marketing and the utilization of social media.

New media is defined as “any interactive media, especially electronic mass media combined with computers; also, this combination as a profession” (dictionary.com, 2009). There are many aspects of new social media and equally as many avenues of approach to the effective utilization of new media for marketing and communications purposes. Tedesco (2009) reports that “more and more business is going to transact via Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and other applications yet to be developed” cautioning that this movement is too important to not be included in a corporate marketing and communications strategy.

Calculating the ROI, or return on investment, is not an easy process for marketing and sales strategies overall, and is equally as challenging when trying to measure the ROI for one’s social media efforts. The research of Tedesco (2009) has created a calculation that can be utilized to determine if the social media efforts are paying off. He recommends:

Choose a consistent time period for each calculation. Hours invested in social media activities x average hourly rate = social media cost. Social media cost divided by target contribution margin % = breakeven. Number of social media leads x lead value = social generated revenue. Social media generated revenue divided by breakeven = social media payback indicator. If your social media payback indicator in step 4 is greater than 1.0, you are on track to experience a positive return on your investment (Tedesco, 2009, p. 1)

Implementing this calculation to assist in ROI determination of one’s social media efforts is a good starting point. As awareness and understanding of the social media as related to one’s specific needs is developed, the calculation can be fine tuned to fit specific needs. Carrabis, et al., (2008) assert that about half the survey respondents they paneled are implementing some form of measurement for their social media initiatives. Some measurement avenues by these marketing and communications professionals include the measurement of “enhanced relationships with key audiences, improve the reputation of the businesses, drive customer awareness of their online act ivies and to solicit customer comments and feedback” (Carrabis, et al., 2008, p. 16).

A company must respond with a new strategy for marketing and communications that integrates the use of social media for creating the customer experience and brand management. This truly involves a new way of perceiving the consumer: not simply as a commodity, but as something that requires relational and experiential involvement. Viral marketing must become a component of an overarching integrated marketing and communications strategy (How to launch, 2008). “If viral marketing is not the magic bullet, it has at least become a deadly arrow in the marketer’s quiver” (Ferguson, 2008, p. 181).

It is a well educated, highly affluent, and younger individual that is typically utilizing online formats for information gathering and disseminating (Ferguson, 2008). Barnes, et al., (2008) asserts that companies must now respond to the demands and buyer behavior of this highly desirable consumer group.

There is a growing group of highly desirable consumers: 25-55 year olds, college-educated, earning $100,000+ annually, a very powerful group in terms of buying behavior. These most savvy and sought after consumers are using social media to research companies. They will not support companies with poor customer care reputations, and finally, they will talk about all of this openly with others via multiple online vehicles. This research should serve as a wake-up call to companies: listen, respond and improve (Barnes, et al., 2008, p. 12).

Social media are distinct from industrial media, such as newspapers, television, and film. While social media are relatively inexpensive and accessible tools that enable anyone (even private individuals) to publish or access information, industrial media generally require significant resources to publish information. Examples of industrial media issues include a printing press or a government-granted spectrum license.

Methodology & Research Design

The overall objective of this research study is to measure the effectiveness of Social Media as Viral Marketing.

Figure 1 illustrates the overall research design for Phase I. A questionnaire will be designed. A review of the literature showed no previous scales measuring this construct, thus the primary objective of this phase would be to explore the appropriateness, reliability, and validity of using my questionnaire items (questions). In addition, modified questionnaire will be constructed, if significant reliability is found not to be achieved.

The sampling frame used would be the respondents based on rules as set in its respective section ‘sampling’ mentioned under.

Figure 1: Research design flowchart

All statistical analyses would be performed using SPSS (version 15.0) and will be discussed in the following section.

Survey Instrument

Due to the nature of the survey constructs, a brand may or may not be chosen to ensure that the study population is familiar with the brand. The questionnaire would request respondents to evaluate the focal brand on measurement scales or respective questions.

The concluding section of the questionnaire would request respondents to provide demographic data. Information collected included: gender, age, income, employment classification, frequency of using focal brand, and frequency of using other casual brands in competition with focal brand etc.

Pre-test and Pilot Study

After instrument development, the questionnaire would be formatted and uploaded to an online survey system. The pre-test would have three primary objectives:

1) To evaluate content validity in terms of sequence and flow of questions, ambiguity or bias of verbiage, ease of understanding, and appropriateness of scale levels and anchoring words.

2) To test ease of use of the online survey instrument in terms of clarity of instructions, format of questions and clarity of scales, length of survey and time of completion

3) To evaluate cover letter and ability to recruit respondent.

Data Analyses

Figure 2 presents a flowchart of the statistical analyses that will be performed. Before running the analyses, data would be checked for possible violations of the assumptions underlying respective analysis. A final usable sample would be established after the data would be screened for outliers, missing data, and normality. Descriptive statistics would be the used to summarize means and standard deviations for all constructs and demographics. The scales would be tested for reliability using Cronbach’s alpha.

Figure 2: Data analysis flowchart

Implementation Plan

Months

May

June

July

Aug

Sep

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Research & Idea Generation For The Objective of Research

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Development of Proposal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Presenatation of the Idea To The Instructor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Designing & Discussing the research

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Litreature Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Exploration of The Organizations Involved

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Development of Questionaires

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Data Collection

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Data Anallysis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Conclusion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recommendation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Formation of Report

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Submission

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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