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Social networks and business

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Découvrir un aspect de la notion « Citoyenneté et mondes virtuels ».

Points clés
  • Les réseaux sociaux, après avoir envahi nos vies privées, prennent de plus en plus de place dans la vie des entreprises.
  • Ils sont un moyen rapide et efficace pour les entreprises de faire parler d’elles, et ce à moindre cout. Ce n’est pas pour rien qu’ils sont devenus le nouveau terrain de chasse des stratégies marketing.
  • Ces outils instaurent un nouveau mode de communication entre les entreprises et les clients.

Now that the world looks like a village, we cannot do without the different social networks which help the different inhabitants of our planet to communicate with each other. If the man or the woman in the street finds them useful, we can say that they are essential to business(wo)men who have understood the importance of these modern tools to develop their strategy.

1. What is a social network?

A social network is a website or a mobile app which enables people sharing the same interests to communicate with each other and post comments, photos and videos, that people can like or share, in order to establish a contact and talk about the different topics they have in common. They form a group of “friends” which bring in new “friends” in their turn.

The most famous networks are Facebook, WhatsApp, Google+, Twitter, Instagram. Nearly three billion people use them around the globe, and in less than twenty years they have become part of our everyday lives.
People like talking about themselves so much that they do not hesitate to babble about their lives. But social networks are often used for marketing strategies as we are going to see below.

2. Social networks are changing business

If you decide to set up your own company, you will have to use a social network (or more) if you want people to know you. Generally, the networks used for business are different from those mentioned above even though the latter, Instagram, can be used as well. Business(wo)men use LinkedIn, Socialcast, Yammer, etc. because they know they will have difficulties existing if they do not have recourse to them.
Indeed, if nobody has heard of your business, you will not have customers, so it is vital to communicate about it. And what is more efficient today than a social network?
If you post a comment about your business, someone at the other end of the world may read it in the following seconds! For free! They help you boost your visibility and reach the widest possible audience quickly and effortlessly. Tempting, isn’t it? Of course, you do not have to advertise for customers in Australia or South America, you can also advertise locally and this usually also proves very fruitful.

Thanks to social networks business(wo)men do not have to call their customers, which can be perceived as intrusive sometimes and have a negative effect. They can also answer their customers’ questions and complaints quickly. Last but not least, they save huge amounts of money because they do not have to start an expensive ad campaign by buying pages in newspapers or sticking immense posters on billboards.

3. The impact of virtual worlds on people's lives

To conclude we can say that social networks have changed the way brands interact with their customers. We can add for sure that they are here to stay since most business(wo)men agree to say that their revenues have grown thanks to this new market strategy. People spend 16% of online time on social networks and more and more communications take place on the web. No wonder that business(wo)men have followed the trend and have been basing their market strategies on social networks to aim at potential customers.

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