Network to Drive Revenue
There are millions of people out there who not only love to shop, but love to talk about the things they buy. They’re talking online through social networks and online product reviews, providing marketers with a huge opportunity to drive sales.
At first, a consumer’s desire to spread his or her opinions across the electronic universe seems very narcissistic. After all, who cares what BillyBob1634 in Sheboygan thinks about the latest iPod?
Actually, millions of his online shopping peers do. They care a lot. They care more about his opinion than they care about yours. They’ve become numb to TV commercials, ads and e-mails, and they’re jaded by marketers’ promises. They know that they will discover the real truth about a product the hard way—after they buy. So nowadays, before clicking “Buy,” they muster the collective wisdom of their online social network, put their purchase up for a vote, and let the majority rule.
Drive Sales Through Online Social Networks
Savvy marketers are playing along in the social network game to get the world talking about their products and services. They’re using a number of viral marketing tools on their own sites and on sites specifically built for social network marketing to attract new buyers and spread the word about their products.
An online social network is a loose affiliation of people who interact through Web sites. The Web enables any person to build a vast number of relationships with others, regardless of geographical distance. It also makes it possible for people with similar interests to find each other and to contribute their comments and ideas in diverse forums. It’s the number and diversity of possible relationships that is the key to online social network marketing.
Network Within Your Own Site
At their most basic, online social networks may grow around tell-a-friend and wishlist features, which allow people to communicate product information to other individuals they know. However, everyone’s product knowledge and personal information is kept from the outside world, and strangers can’t interact with them or benefit from their experience.