This chapter explains the nature, effects and current standing of the new generation of Internet applications, commonly known as Social Media or Web 2.0, reviews their role as marketing instruments and identifies opportunities for SMEs for engaging them as part of their marketing strategy. The chapter defines and analyses the Social Media phenomenon, identifying the main approaches corporations follow in engaging Web 2.0-based applications in order to that support, complement or improve their traditional and online marketing activities. These approaches aim at using the social Internet as source of market intelligence, communicating with customers, efficiently develop-, market- and distribute products and also improve customer relations and retention. The chapter proposes a classification of the main Social Media - based applications and their roles as passive or active marketing instruments.
Based on the experience of pioneering firms the chapter identifies the main conditions and options for SMEs willing to utilize the Web 2.0 as commercial tool in order to advance their marketing operations and connect to the new consumer in the virtual and physical marketplace. While field experience so far indicates that large corporations rather than SMEs are more likely to engage in Social Media marketing the low cost, potential and apparent popularity of Social Media among customers make the domain extremely attractive for SMEs.
|Title of host publication||Global perspectives on small and medium enterprises and strategic information systems: International approaches|
|Editors||P. Bharati, I. Lee|
|Place of Publication||Hershey, Pennsylvania|
|Number of pages||354|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|