Social media marketing is a strange animal. Some large corporations are spending millions if not billions to market their brands on social media. But, what IS Social Media Marketing? Is there a real definition out there that really defines what Social Media Marketing can DO for a business?

My father was a philosophy professor and a linguist. He loved to DEFINE words and catch phrases by what they really mean.

So, let’s give a definition of Social Media Marketing word by word.

Social: Derived from the Latin word socii (“allies”). Social is also a “fuzzy” concept meaning attitudes or behaviors which take others into account.

So to be “social” is to act in such a way that others will respond to, or to create an atmosphere where others will want to participate.

So the social part of social media marketing might be defined as simply creating an atmosphere of interaction. BUT it’s important to note that in terms of online marketing, there is always a target audience. We SHOULD know WHO we want to attract and communicate with.

Let’s go a step further and say that we want to create interactions in the people we believe will love our products and services.

On to the next word: Media.

Media is coupled with medium as a way an artist communicates. A painter uses oil and canvas as a media to communication. A multi media experience combines sound, graphical artwork, music and pictures to convey a message.

Have you ever noticed how more people respond to a social media posting of a video or a funny picture of Grumpy Cat than anything else?

Also media might also come in the form of an article or blog post such as the one you are reading now.

Now let us combine Social as we are defining it with Media.

A Social Media experience could be defined as sharing a piece of media with a group of like minded people or friends or even business partners. So, Social Media is simply being social or interact with like minded people by using pieces of media.

So now here comes and last word and where this gets really interesting.

Marketing : The art of starting meaningful conversations.

Another definition of Marketing is telling people what you do, and telling them over and over again. Marketing can also be defined as an organizational function and a procedure for delivering and communicating to your target audience and customers. To find out what segment of the population you should be communicating with and drawing to your company.

But Marketing is NOT selling. Marketing means keeping your brand visible and in front of your target audience.

And here is where the clincher is. If Marketing is not selling then Social Media Marketing is not selling either.

According to a Marketing Research Report that came out after the last holiday season, less than 1% of online sales came from Social Media Marketing.

So then, why bother with Social Media Marketing at all? Well, that’s like saying why bother Marketing your business at all. To me, social media marketing is used to draw in who you want to EVENTUALLY sell to… eventually.

Social Media Marketing SHOULD use MEDIA to cause a reaction in your audience which will lead to that media being shared with others who are also in your target audience.

Just remember. Marketing is essential to your business, and social media gives us a way to communicate ideas, create emotional reactions, and give people a reason to laugh and even cheer for you and your business.

THINK about what MEDIA your ideal customer would love to see and share. What social reaction could you achieve with just the right funny picture or interesting informative blog article.

Finally, Marketing is a Science. And anyone who tells you they do “Social Media Marketing” and can not give you a report on HOW WELL the social media marketing is doing and who is reacting to it, does not understand the meaning of the word.

I pride myself in explaining everything I can in plain English. I hope you have enjoyed reading this piece of Media and that you will Socially share it with others so that this piece of Social Media Marketing will be a success for my company.

Thanks Again:

Darrell Stern