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Social Media

Social media are computer-mediated tools that allow people to create, share or
exchange information, ideas, and pictures/videos in virtual communities and
networks. Social media is defined as "a group of Internet-based applications that
build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, and that allow
the creation and exchange of user-generated content." Furthermore, social media
depend on mobile and web-based technologies to create highly interactive
platforms through which individuals and communities share, co-create, discuss, and
modify user-generated content. They introduce substantial and pervasive changes
to communication between businesses,organizations, communities, and
individuals.These changes are the focus of the emerging field of technoself studies.
Social media are different from traditional or industrial media in many ways,
including quality,reach, frequency, usability, immediacy, and permanence. Social
media operates in a dialogic transmission system, (many sources to many
receivers).This is in contrast to traditional media that operates under a monologic
transmission model (one source to many receivers).
There are many effects that stem from internet usage. According to Nielsen,
internet users continue to spend more time with social media sites than any other
type of site. At the same time, the total time spent on social media in the U.S.
across PC and mobile devices increased by 99 percent to 121 billion minutes in July
2012 compared to 66 billion minutes in July 2011. For content contributors, the
benefits of participating in social media have gone beyond simply social sharing to
building reputation and bringing in career opportunities and monetary income, as
discussed in Tang, Gu, and Whinston (2012).
Classification of social media

Facebook an example of a social media site had over one billion active users in
October 2012.
Social media technologies take on many different forms including blogs, business
networks , enterprise social networks, forums, microblogs, photo sharing,
products/services review, social bookmarking, social gaming, social networks, video
sharing and virtual worlds.

1. Virality
Some social media sites have greater virality - defined as a greater likelihood that
users will reshare content posted (by another user) to their social network. Many
social media sites provide specific functionality to help users reshare content - for
example, Twitter's retweet button, Pinterest pin or Tumblr's reblog function.

Businesses may have a particular interest in viral marketing; nonprofit organisations

and activists may have similar interests in virality.

Mobile social media refers to the combination of mobile devices and social media.
This is a group of mobile marketing applications that allow the creation and
exchange of user-generated content.[8] Due to the fact that mobile social media run
on mobile devices, they differ from traditional social media by incorporating new
factors such as the current location of the user (location-sensitivity) or the time
delay between sending and receiving messages(time-sensitivity). According to
Andreas Kaplan, mobile social media applications can be differentiated among four

Space-timers (location and time sensitive): Exchange of messages with

relevance for one specific location at one specific point in time (e.g. Facebook
Places; Foursquare)
Space-locators (only location sensitive): Exchange of messages, with
relevance for one specific location, which are tagged to a certain place and
read later by others (e.g. Yelp; Qype)
Quick-timers (only time sensitive): Transfer of traditional social media
applications to mobile devices to increase immediacy (e.g. posting Twitter
messages or Facebook status updates)
Slow-timers (neither location, nor time sensitive): Transfer of traditional social
media applications to mobile devices (e.g. watching a YouTube video or
reading a Wikipedia entry)

2. Mobile social media and business potential[edit]

Although traditional social media offer a variety of opportunities for companies in a
wide range of business sectors, Economic Sector mobile social media makes use of
the location- and time-sensitivity aspects of it in order to engage into marketing
research, communication, sales promotions/discounts, and relationship
development/loyalty programs.
Marketing research: Mobile social media applications offer data about offline
consumer movements at a level of detail heretofore limited to online companies.
Any firm can now know the exact time at which a customer entered one of its
outlets, as well as comments made during the visit.
Communication: Mobile social media communication takes two forms, the first of
which is company-to-consumer in which a company may establish a connection to a
consumer based on its location and provide reviews about locations nearby. The

second type of communication is user-generated content. For example, McDonald's

offered $5 and $10 gift cards to 100 users randomly selected among those checking
in at one of the restaurants. This promotion increased check-ins by 33% (from 2,146
to 2,865), resulted in over 50 articles and blog posts, and prompted several hundred
thousand news feeds and Twitter messages.
Sales promotions and discounts: Although in the past customers had to use printed
coupons, mobile social media allows companies to tailor promotions to specific
users at specific times. For example, when launching its California-Cancun service,
Virgin America offered users who checked in through Loopt at one of three
designated Border Grill taco trucks in San Francisco and Los Angeles between 11 am
and 3 pm on August 31, 2010, two tacos for $1 and two flights to Mexico for the
price of one.
Relationship development and loyalty programs: In order to increase long-term
relationships with customers, companies are able to create loyalty programs that
allow customers who check-in regularly at a location to earn discounts or perks. For
example, American Eagle Outfitters remunerates such customers with a tiered 10%,
15%, or 20% discount on their total purchase.
E-Commerce: Mobile social media applications such as and Pinterest
are influencing an upward trend in the popularity and accessibility of e-commerce,
or online purchases.
According to the Nielsen Company's "The U.S. Digital Consumer Report", almost half
(47%) of smartphone owners visit social networks every day via mobile applications.
With the rapid adoption of mobile devices, social media has a symbiotic relationship
with the mobile consumer.
Distinction from other media
E-commerce businesses may refer to social media as consumer-generated media
(CGM). A common thread running through all definitions of social media is a
blending of technology and social interaction for the co-creation of value.
People obtain information, education, news, and other data from electronic and print
media. Social media are distinct from industrial or traditional media such as
newspapers, television, and film as they are comparatively inexpensive and
accessible. They enable anyone (even private individuals) to publish or access
information. Industrial media generally require significant resources to publish
information as in most cases the articles go through many revisions before being
One characteristic shared by both social and industrial media is the capability to
reach small or large audiences; for example, either a blog post or a television show

may reach no people or millions of people. Some of the properties that help
describe the differences between social and industrial media are:
Quality: In industrial(traditional) publishingmediated by a publisherthe typical
range of quality is substantially narrower than in niche, unmediated markets. The
main challenge posed by content in social media sites is the fact that the
distribution of quality has high variance: from very high-quality items to low-quality,
sometimes abusive content.[3]
Reach: Both industrial and social media technologies provide scale and are capable
of reaching a global audience. Industrial media, however, typically use a centralized
framework for organization, production, and dissemination, whereas social media
are by their very nature more decentralized, less hierarchical, and distinguished by
multiple points of production and utility.
Frequency: The number of times an advertisement is displayed on social media
Accessibility: The means of production for industrial media are typically
government and/or corporate (privately owned); social media tools are generally
available to the public at little or no cost.
Usability: Industrial media production typically requires specialized skills and
training. Conversely, most social media production requires only modest
reinterpretation of existing skills; in theory, anyone with access can operate the
means of social media production.
Immediacy: The time lag between communications produced by industrial media
can be long (days, weeks, or even months) compared to social media (which can be
capable of virtually instantaneous responses).
Permanence: Industrial media, once created, cannot be altered (once a magazine
article is printed and distributed, changes cannot be made to that same article)
whereas social media can be altered almost instantaneously by comments or
Community media constitute a hybrid of industrial and social media. Though
community-owned, some community radio, TV, and newspapers are run by
professionals and some by amateurs. They use both social and industrial media
Social media have also been recognized for the way they have changed how public
relations professionals conduct their jobs. They have provided an open arena where
people are free to exchange ideas on companies, brands, and products. As stated
by Doc Searls and David Wagner, two authorities on the effects of Internet on
marketing, advertising, and PR, "The best of the people in PR are not PR types at all.
They understand that there aren't censors, they're the company's best

conversationalists."[11] Social media provides an environment where users and PR

professionals can converse, and where PR professionals can promote their brand
and improve their company's image by listening and responding to what the public
is saying about their product.

H. Kietzmann, Jan; Kristopher Hermkens (2011). "Social media? Get serious! Understanding the
functional building blocks of social media". Business Horizons54: 241251
Tang, Qian; Gu, Bin; Whinston, Andrew B. (2012). "Content Contribution for Revenue Sharing and
Reputation in Social Media: A Dynamic Structural Model". Journal of Management Information
Systems 29: 4175
Aichner, T. and Jacob, F. (March 2015). "Measuring the Degree of Corporate Social Media
Use". International Journal of Market Research 57 (2): 257275.

Kaplan, Andreas M. (MarchApril 2012). "If you love something, let it go

mobile: Mobile marketing and mobile social media 4x4". Business Horizons 55
(2): 129139.

Zafarani, Reza; Abbasi, Mohammad Ali; Liu, Huan (2014). "Social Media Mining: An Introduction".
Retrieved 15 November 2014.
Safranak, R. "The Emerging Role of Social Media in Regime Change" (PDF). Proquest Discovery
Guides. Retrieved 19 March 2013.

Types of social media

Social Networks Services that allow you to connect with other people of similar
interests and background. Usually they consist of a profile, various ways to interact
with other users, ability to setup groups, etc. The most popular are Facebook and

Bookmarking Sites Services that allow you to save, organize and manage links to
various websites and resources around the internet. Most allow you to tag your
links to make them easy to search and share. The most popular are Delicious and

Social News Services that allow people to post various news items or links to
outside articles and then allows its users tovote on the items. The voting is the
core social aspect as the items that get the most votes are displayed the most
prominently. The community decides which news items get seen by more people.
The most popular are Digg and Reddit.

Media Sharing Services that allow you to upload and share various media such as
pictures and video. Most services have additional social features such as profiles,
commenting, etc. The most popular are YouTube and Flickr.

Microblogging Services that focus on short updates that are pushed out to anyone
subscribed to receive the updates. The most popular is Twitter.

Blog Comments and Forums Online forums allow members to hold conversations
by posting messages. Blog comments are similar except they are attached to blogs
and usually the discussion centers around the topic of the blog post. There are
MANY popular blogs and forums.

Keep in mind that, while these are the 6 different types of social media, there can
be overlap among the various services. For instance, Facebook has microblogging
features with their status update. Also, Flickr and YouTube have comment systems
similar to that of blogs.
Relationship networks
You cant talk about types of social media without first mentioning major networks
such as Facebook. While personal relationship networks arent the oldest type of
social media, they can be called the most defining of them all. These channels were
one of the first ones to offer public mini-sites, which later became known as profiles,
with extensive information about the user, and most often require them to register
with their real name. Relationship networks allowed us to keep all our
communications in one place, on our Walls, Timelines or private messages, and
share updates with our entire networks in one click. They vary from professional
relationship networks that help you find work, connect with other professionals in
the field, and share recommendations, to romantic relationship networks that help
you find single users in your area.
Hootsuite on FB types of social media
Relationship networks also offer a unique chance for brands to connect to their
users on a personal level. These days, it is necessary for most brands to have a
Facebook Page or a Twitter account, in order to reach out to their audience online
and answer any customer service queries that may arise.
Media sharing networks

This type of social network is defined by the primary type of media shared among
users. Facebook and Twitter have amazing video and image-sharing capabilities;
however, the majority of posts shared on these channels contain text. For channels
such as Flickr or Instagram, however, images are the main focususers have to
choose, upload and edit image files before proceeding with anything else, such as
captions or mentions of other users. Similarly, with sites such as YouTube and
Vimeo, or apps like Vine and Snapchat, video is the primary mode of
When determining whether or not your business needs to establish a presence on a
media sharing network, its important to consider your available resources. If theres
one thing the most successful brands on platforms like YouTube or Instagram have
in common, its a thoroughly planned mission and carefully designed media assets,
usually following a certain theme. To increase your businesss chances of success on
media sharing networks, consult our extensive library of resources.
Online reviews
Location-based review services such as Yelp and Urbanspoon are getting more
traction as personal social networks adopt geolocation, and more users choose to
consult the Internet along with their friends for recommendations of best dining
spots. There are sites to review anything from hotels, restaurant or your latest
employerand user reviews have more weight than ever before. Sites like Airbnb
and Uber, the biggest service providers in the emerging sharing economy, rely
largely on host and driver reviews, respectively, to determine who benefits from the
Urbanspoon types of social media
Its vital for your brand to have the ability to leverage user reviews, whether
positive or negative, to maintain client relationships. The Internet is a huge
collective knowledge base, and more and more consumers choose to consult the
public opinion online to determine whether the brand is worth their business. In
order to do this in a cost-effective way, select a customer success team member to
address reviews on sites relevant for your business. Entrust them with answering
any questions or concerns from clients with average or dissatisfactory experiences,
and see if there is anything that can be done on your end to turn a possible
detractor into a fan. For more on this topic, read our blog posts on how to respond
to negative reviews and online reputation management.

Discussion forums
Discussion forums is one of the oldest types of social media. Before we connected
to our first university friends on The Facebook, we discussed pop culture, current

affairs, and asked for help on forums. Perhaps its that unquenchable desire to get a
share of collective knowledge that accounts for the wide reach and numerous users
on forums such as reddit. The front page of the Internet, as well as other forums
like Quora and Digg, seldomly require the persons real name to register and post,
allowing for complete anonymity, if desired.
quora - how to promote your blog
However, while anonymity may be an attractive feature for some users, we dont
recommend that brands adopt it. This defeats the purpose of being present on such
a network; your best bet at promoting your business on a forum is by sharing
content relevant to a discussion, and participating in as many discussions as
possible. Be very careful to avoid explicit self-promotionif you can, leave
promotion of your brand to your brand ambassadors. Both moderators and users on
networks such as reddit are sensitive to advertising disguised as a post, and this
can seriously damage the perception of your brand. The best strategy is to offer
expertise in your field by joining an existing discussion and linking to an article
hosted on your official blog or a how-to video tutorial, for example. You can also go
the General Electric route and share cool moments from behind the scenes of your
workday, as they did in this cool video.
Social publishing platforms
Social publishing platforms consist of blogs and microblogs, where long and shortform written content can be shared with other users. These platforms range from
real-time interaction networks such as Twitterwhich, while still officially placed in
the category of microblogging platforms, is not normally included in the blogging
category by most usersto Medium and Tumblr, which are battling it out for the
title of the best interactive social publishing; to more traditional blogging platforms,
such as WordPress and Blogger.
Medium types of social media
While the benefits of Twitter for business are too obvious to recount, a blogging
platform is a different story. If your promotion strategy includes content marketing
(and if it doesnt, you might want to consider it), your business can gain visibility by
keeping a blog. Not only does a blog help increase awareness of your business and
generate more engaging content for your social channels such as Facebook, it can
also help carve out a niche for your brand as a thought leader in your industry. If
you find the idea of starting a blog as scary as scaling a mountain, here are some
steps to help you get to the top.

Bookmarking sites

In the early days of the Internet (think Hosting your own site on Geocities era),
content discovery online was a difficult task. Nowadays, there is a plethora of
interesting, useful and enlightening content online, and sifting through all of it on
your own is simply impossible. Of course, search engines like Google come in very
handy when you know what to look for, but when you only have a vague idea of
content youd like to read or watch, theres bookmarking sites. These are web
services like StumbleUpon, Pinterest, and Flipboard, where users collect content
from elsewhere on the Internet, and save it to their account on the platform. This
content can be private or public, and shared with other users. Often, these
bookmarking sites will then suggest content similar to the links or images you have
already saved on the network.
Pinterest Hootsuite types of social media
First and foremost, businesses can benefit from making their website bookmarkfriendly. This entails optimizing the headlines and images on your blog or website
for RSS feeds, making them easier to access and read for your audience. Your brand
might also benefit from ensuring the articles or videos can be pinned with
Pinterests browser extension. Finally, pay close attention to the images featured on
your site or blogthese are the window displays of Pins, so you want them to be
good representations of your content.
Secondly, bookmarking sites are great tools for content curation. You can create
your own Pinterest board or Flipboard magazine to sort through the most engaging
content on your topic of choosing from third-party sources, and showcase content
from your own blogs. If your brand uses Hootsuite, you can then add content to your
RSS feeds or bookmarking sites such as Pinterest or Flipboard right in your
dashboard! Dive into some of our resources if youre not sure where to start with
your Pinterest or Flipboard strategy.
Interest-based networks
One of the most wonderful opportunities presented by social media is the ability to
find people with common interests, no matter how niche these hobbies may first
appear to be. In addition to Facebook and LinkedIn Groups and Google+
communities, there are whole networks dedicated to exploration of interestsuch
as for musicians and music lovers, and Goodreads for authors and avid
Goodreads types of social media
Keeping an account on one of these interest-based networks may not be a wise use
of your brands resourcesyou dont want to end up with a neglected social media
account. However, its another story if your customers and social audience all share
a common interest, and you know this simply due to the nature of your business.
Such is the case for publishing houses, for example, and their book-loving clients. A

hobby or interest-based network is a good place to keep up with current trends

among fans of a particular industry or its products.

Last but not least, a big trend emerging across all types of social media is the ability
to view and purchase desired goods with a click of a button. Sites such as Polyvore
aggregate products from different retailers in a single online marketplace, and
services like Etsy allow small businesses and individual crafters to sell their products
without an existing brick-and-mortar location. Over the past year, e-commerce
elements have been adopted by many networks whose primary functionalities place
them in different categories, such as Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook.
Etsy types of social media
Many consumers, especially Millennials, are researching and making their purchases
online. If the size of your brand allows is, an online store, or, at the very least, an
online catalogue is essential to attract Generation Y clients. E-commerce sites and
sites with e-commerce capabilities, such as Pinterest, can be a good solution for
brands who arent currently hosting an online store as part of their website. If your
business doesnt have an e-commerce partnership with a major distributor like
Amazon, you may soon be able to incorporate Buy buttons into social networks like
Users of the world, unite! The challenges and opportunities of Social Media
Andreas M. Kaplan, , Michael Haenlein
R.V. Kozinets The field behind the screen: Using netnography for marketing
research in online communitiesJournal of Marketing Research, 39 (1) (2002),
pp. 6172

Purchase process

Identify your key decisionmaker(s) A key decisionmaker can play an important role
in buying green power. Key decisionmakers can be the CEO, mayor, or someone

else who has the ability to take action. This step is especially critical for larger
Gather your energy data Estimate your organization's purchased electricity use by
using your recent electricity bills or by using a per-square-foot estimate. For
additional information on estimating your electricity use, please review the
Partnership Requirements (PDF) (19 pp, 520K)
Determine your purchase scope Some organizations find that buying green power
for a facility, or group of facilities, is the most logical place to start. Your purchase
scope (facility vs. organization-wide) might influence the type of product you
Evaluate product options There are three eligible product options to choose from
when meeting EPA's purchase requirements. In some cases, not all products will be
available in your area. The Green Power Locator can assist you in identifying green
power providers near you.
Develop purchase criteria It is helpful to develop a list of criteria when evaluating
provider and product options. Criteria can be based on such factors as budget,
resource geography, resource base, carbon benefit, or contract type or length.
Solicit product providers Contact multiple providers to determine the going market
rate for green power products. Many providers of green power offer add-on services
outside of their primary green power offering.
Develop a procurement or project plan By developing a procurement or project
plan, you can better assess the value of buying green power, assess potential
issues, and help convince others in your organization.
Buy green power When buying green power, ensure that your contract conveys
the rights to make environmental claims. For the purpose of partnering with EPA,
you should also ensure that your purchase meets EPA's partnership requirements
(PDF) (19 pp, 690K).
Work with EPA to capture the benefits of your purchase As a Partner, your
organization can receive EPA support in making purchase announcements. Partners
can receive press release assistance, environmental equivalency statements, and
use EPA's Green Power Partner mark on Web sites and communications materials.
The green power purchase process and other helpful information is also available in
EPA's Guide to Purchasing Green Power (PDF) (58 pp, 2MB). For additional
information on the development of on-site projects please visit the Resources for
On-site Projects Web page.
Partnership Perspective

EPA provides its Green Power Partners with valuable technical support and advice on
identifying products that meet your organization's specific needs. Our staff can
provide detailed information on a wide range of topics, including issuing requests
for proposals, as well as pointers on navigating the on-site project development
Added Reading
Guide to GPPThe Guide to Purchasing Green Power (PDF) (58 pp, 2MB) provides
information about buying green power. It includes information on the different types
of green power products and the benefits of green power purchasing, including how
to capture the greatest benefit from your purchase. The Guide is the product of a
cooperative effort between EPA, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the World
Resources Institute, and the Center for Resource Solutions (CRS).
Evaluating information techniques:
The "rst four articles focus on the empirical evaluation of well-known information
visualization techniques and systems, such as VIBE, Treemap and Hyperbolic 3D.
1071-5819/00/110631#05 $35.00/0 ( 2000 Academic Press
Authors of these articles not only report the results of in-depth analysis of some of
best-known information visualization techniques, but also demonstrate
that could be adapted and applied to the evaluation of other information
techniques. This sub-theme also includes an article addressing a more basic
between two- and three-dimensional visualizations.
VIBE is a classic information visualization designed by researchers at the University

Pittsburgh (Olsen et al., 1993). In VIBE the degree of match between a document
query term is represented spatially. Documents relevant to a query term are
expected to
be located nearer to that query term. This special issue includes an article by Morse,
Lewis and Olsen (2000), in which they developed a method to match task and
features of a retrieval system based on a visual taxonomy. As a result, the e!ects of
speci"c visualization features can be singled out and inspected in isolation from the
of the system. They called this a de-featuring method, i.e. by eliminating features
functions until only the visualization remains. By starting with the simplest
instances, it
becomes possible to test increasingly more complex situations and compare results
within a level of di$culty as well as across levels.
Treemap displays (Johnson & Shneiderman, 1991; Shneiderman, 1992) are another
example of information visualization techniques that have little in-depth empirical
evaluations. Stasko, Catrambone, Guzdial and McDonald (2000) present two
studies of visualizations of hierarchies, in particular, computer "le and directory
The Treemap and Sunburst space-"lling visualizations were evaluated with targeted
end users. Di!erent search strategies were adopted with each tool, which also
appeared to in#uence performance. Overall, users preferred Sunburst over the
Treemap visualization for the tasks examined.
Hierarchies have been one of the most commonly used data structures in
visualization, notably in Cone Trees (Robertson et al., 1991), Cat-a-Cone (Hearst

& Karadi, 1997) and Hyperbolic 3D (Munzner, 1998). Empirical evaluations of

visualization concerning hierarchical structures are clearly signi"cant to the
of information visualization. In this special issue, Risden, Czerwinski, Munzner
and Cook (2000) examine the strengths and weaknesses of two conventional 2D
and that of the third design, in which an interactive three-dimensional hyperbolic
view is
integrated with a traditional two-dimensional list view. The authors have
that integrating the ability to view the overall structure of the information space
with the
ability to easily assess local and global relationships is key to successful search
The contribution of this article is that it demonstrates where novel focus#
context views might become particularly useful for experienced users. It appears
novel, 3D interactive techniques might best be introduced alongside more familiar
visualizations, allowing the user to mix interaction strategies as necessary. The
by North and Shneiderman (2000) in this issue echoes this latter "nding.
Multiple coordinated visualizations enable users to rapidly explore complex
However, users often need unforeseen combinations of coordinated visualizations.
North and Shneiderman (2000) introduce their snap-together visualization tool,
enables users to con"gure their own user interfaces to visualizations. Their article
describes two studies of users operating this tool. Operating an overview-and-detail
coordination reliably improved user performance over detail-only and uncoordinated

interfaces for most tasks.

The domain of information retrieval has profound connections to information
primarily due to the need for improved visualizations of search results.
Sutcli!e, Ennis and Hu (2000) describe their empirical evaluation of an
system incorporating a bullseye view and a hierarchical thesaurus for the
display of retrieved documents. Their study is based on two information-retrieval
The usability metrics of user behaviour, performance and attitude were all collected
evaluate this novel system. While more experienced search users used the bullseye
visualization e!ectively and spent longer on the search tasks, less experienced
were confused by the concept of similarity searching expressed as visual clusters.
conclusion from the study is that while a visual user interface for information
might appear useful, careful evaluation is necessary to determine whether or not
design actually improves performance across all users and under what
Two- and three-dimensional visualizations have always been some of the most
popular design options when it comes to the layout of a semantic structure. It has
long debated whether a three-dimensional visualization would indeed o!er the user
richer semantics, more informative and intuitive controls of the underlying

(e.g. Sutcli!e & Patel, 1996). In this special issue, Westerman and Cribbin (2000)
this question through two empirical studies in which visualizations based on twoand
three-dimensional multidimensional scaling solutions are compared and analysed.
are particularly interested in the extent to which two- and three-dimensional
di!er in terms of semantic richness and cognitive demands. Their conclusion is that,
the purpose of information search, the amount of additional semantic information
can be conveyed by a three-dimensional solution is outweighed by an associated
in cognitive demands.

Empirical evaluation of information visualizations: an introduction

Effects of country-of-origin and product-attribute information on product
evaluation: An information processing perspective
ST Hong, RS Wyer Jr - Journal of Consumer Research, 1989 JSTOR
Evaluation of Information Retrieval Systems: Approaches, Issues, and
SP Harter, CA Hert - Annual Review of Information Science and Technology ,
1997 ERIC

1. Create Valuable Content
While this might seem obvious, its worth stating because creating valuable content
is possibly the most important thing you can do to increase your brands exposure
on social media. To this end,value comes in many forms. The content could be
funny, informative, controversial, or inspiring. As long as it enriches the people who
see it, they will be more likely to share it with their friends giving you free word of
mouth (or, in this case, click of mouse) advertising.

In addition to word-of-mouth advertising, creating valuable content for your blog,

Facebook page, or other social media outlets will reflect positively on your brand.
Like a bottle of wine with a fancy label, creating valuable content shows that youre
invested in creating a high-quality product.
2. Interact With Your Community
So people have started to notice your valuable content? Thats great, but its not
worth much if you dont follow it up with some good community interaction. Ideally,
at least some of your valuable content ends with the opportunity for user
interaction, also called a call to action. A call to action could ask the users to
share the piece, it could ask them to join a debate, or it could just answer a
Basically, start a dialogue. It might be difficult to get people talking at first, but once
you do, your posts will be a lot more interesting for other users to read and it will be
more fun to maintain as well!
3. Localize Your Social Media Pages
Ideally, you should create blogs or websites for each locality in which you do
business. This is especially important for large businesses that span cities, or even
states, but this tactic also can be valuable for smaller businesses with locations in
different parts of a single city as well. These localized blogs will, of course, have
locally relevant content, which will be valuable to the people living in the area.
Localizing a blog will also increase your social media ranking for searches in that
area and will make your website more tempting to other local businesses for cross
promotional deals.
If you dont want to spend the time or money building and maintaining a blog for
each of your locations, it is still a good idea to build local social media pages that
will share locally relevant content. This can be a good compromise for those who
dont want to mess around with buying a lot of domain names but still want to take
advantage of local internet traffic.
4. Target Mobile Social Media Users
Of the 317.2 million people in the United States, fully half own a smart phone or
tablet and of these people, half actively use social media on that device. Thats a
potential audience of 79.3 million people definitely not something you want to
ignore. Unfortunately, native ads dont show up on the Facebook mobile interface
(not yet at least). If you were relying on native ads, therefore, youre missing a large
part of the market.
Also, Facebook has recently started using a program called StoryBump, which
decides what Facebook users will see first in their News Feeds. The old program
tried to pull posts that would match the interests of the individual and, while story

bump does this to some degree, it relies more heavily on how many times an article
is shared and when it was posted.
5. Consider Hiring a Full-Time Social Media Manager
If youre thinking about bumping your social media marketing efforts up a notch,
you might want to consider bringing a full-time social media guru onboard. For small
businesses that are operating on tight margins, it might be prudent to check all the
financial factors before creating such a position. Make sure your company has the
most affordable business rates for cutting energy costs to ensure you have enough
room in the budget to make such a hire. Otherwise, you may want to just consider
hiring a freelancer.
The effects of mass media exposure on acceptance of violence against
women: A field experiment
NM Malamuth, JVP Check - Journal of Research in Personality, 1981
The impact of social media on children, adolescents, and families
GS O'Keeffe, K Clarke-Pearson - Pediatrics, 2011
Foreign-language experience in infancy: Effects of short-term exposure and
social interaction on phonetic learning
PK Kuhl, FM Tsao, HM Liu - Proceedings of the National , 2003 - National Acad

Attitude in purchase process:
Attitude is a psychological variable that is known to affect the purchase decision
process of consumers.

An attitude can generally contain a positive or negative evaluation of people, objects,

event, activities, ideas, or anything in the environment.

Attitudes can be difficult to measure because attitudes are ultimately a hypothetical
construct that cannot be observed directly.
Attitudes can be measured by the use of physiological cues like facial expressions, vocal
changes, and other body rate measures.

an expression of favor or disfavor toward a person, place, thing, or event (the attitude
object). Prominent psychologist Gordon Allport once described attitudes "the most
distinctive and indispensable concept in contemporary social psychology.
Attitude is a psychological variable that is known to affect the purchase decision process of
consumers. Other variables are perception, learning, personality, and lifestyle.

An attitude generally contains a positive or negative evaluation of people, objects, event,

activities, ideas, or anything else in the environment. However, people can also be conflicted
or ambivalent toward an object, meaning that they might at different times express both
positive and negative attitudes toward the same object.

Attitudes can be difficult to measure because attitudes are a hypothetical construct that
cannot be observed directly. Attempted measures may include the use of physiological cues
like facial expressions, vocal changes, and other body rate measures. For instance, fear is
associated with raised eyebrows, increased heart rate and increase body tension.

Attitudes can be changed through persuasion in response to communication. Experimental

research into the factors that can affect the persuasiveness of a message include:

Target Characteristics: These are characteristics that refer to the person who receives and
processes a message. One such trait is intelligence more intelligent people seem to be less
easily persuaded by one-sided messages. Another variable that has been studied in this
category is self-esteem.
Source Characteristics: The major source characteristics are expertise, trustworthiness, and
interpersonal attraction or attractiveness. The credibility of a perceived message has been
found to be a key variable here; if one reads a report about health and believes it came from
a professional medical journal, one may be more easily persuaded than if one believes it is
from a popular newspaper.
Message Characteristics: The nature of the message plays a role in persuasion. Sometimes
presenting both sides of a story is useful to help change attitudes. When people are not
motivated to process the message, simply the number of arguments presented in a
persuasive message will influence attitude change, such that a greater number of
arguments will produce greater attitude change.
Cognitive Routes: A message can appeal to an individual's cognitive evaluation to help
change an attitude. In the central route to persuasion, the individual is presented with the
data and motivated to evaluate the data and arrive at an attitude-changing conclusion. In
the peripheral route to attitude change, the individual is encouraged to look not at the
content but at the source. This is commonly seen in modern advertisements that feature

Problem recognition in purchase process:

PROBLEM RECOGNITION Problem recognition, or need recognition, is the first of the
five steps consumers take when moving through the decision process. In very
simple terms, it is only when we recognize that we need something that we consider
starting the process to find the product or service that will deliver the benefits to fill
the need or solve the problem
Problem Recognition: Actual State versus Desired State Problem recognition is a
psychological process through which we evaluate the difference between our actual
state and our desired state. This is a comparison of our current need or benefits
state with what we would like it to be. The greater the perceived distance
between these two, the more clearly the consumer recognizes potential need.
Remember, however, that need recognition depends on the perception of the
individual consumer. Running out of coffee or Pepsi may trigger one consumer to
immediately go out and buy some more because the problem is seen as urgent,
whereas another person may simply drink a glass of water and put coffee or Pepsi
on the shopping list for next Friday.

A variation of problem recognition is opportunity recognition. Suppose you are

completely satisfied with your current computer setup. When browsing on the web,
you spot an offer for additional computer memory at low cost. You begin to imagine
the new programs and games you could run if you upgraded. Further, you have a
friend who could help install the new memory. You decide to get the extra gigs for
your machine. In a situation like this, the consumer does not perceive a problem
but, rather, perceives an opportunity that leads to a comparison between actual
state and a new desired state.2 What are the possible influences or circumstances
that create a perception of need in the first place?

Influences on Problem Recognition

Problem recognition can be

influenced by a variety of situational, consumer, and marketing factors. These may
operate singly or in combination to trigger problem recognition. These triggers
are of interest to marketers of goods and services and are often part of the copy
points included in promotional communications. The next time you run out of
laundry detergent, why not try Tide? and a television commercial showing a man
having trouble starting his lawn mower while he watches his neighbor start his Toro
on the first starter cord pull are examples.
Situational Influences Obviously, as products or services are used, consumers
recognize the need to replace those that are broken, lost, or worn out or those for
which the contract has expired. When the gas tank reads almost empty, the driver
stops at the next gas station to fill up. When the computer runs out of paper, its
time to buy more, or if the car seems to be in the repair shop more frequently lately,
maybe its time to replace it. There is also the issue of style or color wear out.
Last years clothing style may no longer be in, so the consumer considers a dress,
shirt, or pair of shoes to be worn out. Can you think of other examples that could
be classified as wear outs? Product acquisition also leads consumers to realize
new needs, as one purchase leads to another. A newlywed couple buying a house or
renting an apartment quickly realizes the need to buy furniture, decorate, and stock
up on household supplies before moving in. The owner of a new CD player soon
finds out that this is just the beginning of a lifetime investment in compact disks.
Consumers may recognize the need for new goods and services as a result of
changed circumstances.3 Changes of lifestyle or environmentsuch as a move
away from home to college, a new job, getting married, or a period of
convalescence after an accidentall lead us to perceive new needs, resulting in a
variety of purchases, some of which may be major.

Consumer Influences

Not all consumers respond to problems the same

way. Whereas some look to existing goods and services to provide the benefits to
solve their problems, others think in terms of new products.4 Those in the first
group are actual state consumers. They shop mostly because they realize that
products presently owned require replacement or replenishment and currently
available solutions are the best or acceptable answers. Those in the second group
are desired state consumers. With a tendency to seek and recognize new product
opportunities, they shop not necessarily to replace worn or lost possessions but
because they enjoy the shopping experience. While shopping, they are exposed to
new products, see the benefits they offer, and buy. Motivation arousal is the sense
of drive to action (motivation) a consumer experiences once a problem or need has
been recognized. Different people have different motivations for buying different
goods and services. Motivationsor reasons for buyingcan be physiological, like
hunger, or psychological, like a desire for respect.5 Further, the personality traits of
the consumer, the social environment, and various other internal and external
factors also influence motives. A discussion ofmotivation, its meaning, and
applications is found in Chapter 8 (Section 8-1). Motivation is the driving force for
action. Once a problem is recognized and the consumer intends to take action, he or
she will typically have one or more motivation direction choices. What type of
outcome is sought? In all cases we make choices that we hope will lead to positive
benefit experiences. In general, outcomedriven motives that result in such
experiences may be grouped into five types, as follows:
1. The consumer makes a purchase to optimize satisfaction. We buy what we see as
the best product or service within our economic means. This is particularly true
for goods and services related to entertainment and leisure activities. Going out on
a date to a fancy restaurant, taking a luxury cruise, or flying first class all maximize
pleasure and are ways to optimize satisfaction. How does Marketplace 2-1 point
toward optimizing satisfaction during a spring break travel experience?
2. The consumer makes a purchase to prevent possible future problems. We often
buy as a means of minimizing or eliminating negative consequences. Buyers of cars
with top reliability ratings from Consumer Reports, for example, are most likely
motivated by a wish to avoid breakdowns and costly repairs. Preneed purchases,
such as renters or personal liability or life insurance, also fall into this category
. 3. The consumer makes a purchase to escape from a problem. Here, the motive is
to avoid an existing negative situation. Obvious examples are appeals such as a
getaway island vacation or a golf outing to escape from work or school pressures.
Moving from one apartment to another because of continuing problems with the
heating or air conditioning also is such an escape solution

4.The consumer makes a purchase to resolve conflict. Particularly when we wish to

satisfy two or more motives of different people through a single purchase, the
choice is often one that resolves conflict. A woman is looking for a sporty, stylish
car, while her husband thinks a car with room for the whole family would be a better
purchase. Both want to please the other, so they settle for something in between
the two extremes.
5. The consumer makes a purchase to maintain satisfaction. Many purchases are
made simply to maintain the status quo. Imagine, for example, that a nanny who
takes care of the children for a dual-career couple resigns after several years of
loyal service. The couple immediately hires another nanny to continue the same
level of child care and the same lifestyle. Another example would be the action of a
person who has been very pleased with the same automobile brand over the past
two purchases. When its time to replace the current car, a later model of the same
brand is purchased.

Marketing Influences Information provided by marketers may trigger problem

recognition, leading the consumer to reevaluate his or her actual and desired
states. Price information, for example, can be extremely influential. A consumer who
has decided $39.95 is out of her price range for a magazine subscription may
decide that the magazine is just the thing to help her with a term project when she
sees a special offer at $19.95. The consumer recognizes need and moves toward
the desired state. Promotional activities such as advertising, coupons, free offers,
sweepstakes, product demonstrations, and rebates are ways in which marketers
seek to influence problem recognition. Product or service developments, like the
announcement of a breakthrough in technology or ease of use or greater product
capacity and such, can trigger a consumers reassessment of his or her actual state
and desired state with respect to the product or service. The result could be that a
problem is now recognized. Place actionswhere a product that was not available
can now be ordered on the web, through a catalog, or at one of the stores in town
also can trigger need recognition.

Evaluation of alternatives in purchase process:

During the evaluation of alternatives stage, the consumer evaluates all the products
available on a scale of particular attributes.

During this stage, consumers evaluate all of their products or brand options on a
scale of attributes which have the ability to deliver the benefit that they are

In order for a marketing organization to increase the likelihood that their

brand is part of the evoked set for many consumers, they need to understand
what benefits consumers are seeking and specifically, which attributes will be
most influential to their decision-making process.

It is important to note that consumers evaluate alternatives in terms of the

functional and psychological benefits that they offer.

During this stage, consumers can be significantly influenced by their attitude

as well as the degree of involvement that they may have with the product,
brand, or overall category.

Ultimately, consumers must be able to effectively assess the value of all the
products or brands in their evoked set before they can move on to the next
step of the decision process.

Evaluation of Alternatives
This is the third stage in the Consumer Decision Process. During this stage,
consumers compare the brands and products that are in their evoked set.

Evoked Set
The number of alternatives that are considered by consumers during the problemsolving process.

For example, if the customer involvement is high, then he or she will evaluate
several brands, whereas if it's low, he or she may look at only one brand.

Evaluation of alternatives is the third stage in the Consumer Buying Decision

process. During this stage, consumers evaluate all of their product and brand

options on a scale of attributes which have the ability to deliver the benefit that the
customer is seeking . The brands and products that consumers compare - their
evoked set - represent the alternatives being considered by consumers during the
problem-solving process.
Sometimes known as a consideration set, the evoked set tends to be small relative
to the total number of options available. When a consumer commits significant time
to the comparative process and reviews price, warranties, terms and condition of
sale and other features it is said that they are involved in extended problem solving.

Unlike routine problem solving, extended or extensive problem solving comprises

external research and the evaluation of alternatives. Whereas, routine problem
solving is low-involvement, inexpensive, and has limited risk if purchased, extended
problem solving justifies the additional effort with a high-priced or scarce product,
service, or benefit (e.g., the purchase of a car). Likewise, consumers use extensive
problem solving for infrequently purchased, expensive, high-risk, or new goods or

In order for a marketing organization to increase the likelihood that their brand is
part of the evoked set for many consumers, they need to understand what benefits
consumers are seeking and specifically, which attributes will be most influential to
their decision-making process. It is important to note that consumers evaluate
alternatives in terms of the functional and psychological benefits that they offer. The
company also needs to check other brands of the customer's consideration set to
prepare the right plan for its own brand.

During this stage, consumers can be significantly influenced by their attitude as well
as the degree of involvement that they may have with the product, brand, or overall
category. For example, if the customer involvement is high, then he or she will
evaluate several brands, whereas if it's low, he or she may look at only one brand.
In low involvement buying, the activity is usually frequent, habitual to a certain
extent and there is generally little difference between the brands. No strong
attachment exists between the buyer and the brand. Promotions are simple and
repetitive. Conversely, high involvement buying involves products with many
differences. The behavior is more complex and the research is more detail oriented.

Ultimately, consumers must be able to effectively assess the value of all the
products or brands in their evoked set before they can move on to the next step of
the decision process.