Internet Culture: Social Media Marketing Beyond The Usual

Although there is still value in traditional advertising methods, the Internet is changing the way companies market themselves. Websites have their own domain, but social media is ruling lives and controlling perception. Standing out in this arena is much more than paying for ads and posting pictures to Facebook: being a part of Internet culture and joining trends makes your company remarkable. The most important thing to know about advertising on social media is that people are there to have fun and they respect a company that can join in the digital festivities.


To take social media marketing seriously, it’s vital that every team has an experienced user that regularly monitors a variety of platforms for emerging trends. Internet culture is a fast moving, continually evolving, sphere and it respects original content creators that understand the current in-jokes and discussion topics. It is not always easy to navigate, though, and there are pages on the internet dedicated to making fun of companies that unsuccessfully attempt to broach social media sites for purely commercial purposes without providing anything interesting or entertaining.


Almost everyone has heard of a “meme” and seen the funny image macros floating around the web. However, few people understand the deeper connotations involved. A popular meme is often just an oft repeated line of text that can be applied to varied situations or discussions. A hashtag can also be considered a meme of sorts when used cleverly, ironically, or satirically instead of purely descriptively, categorically, or promotionally.


What’s more, the colloquial definitions of these concepts can change radically over time, allowing more diverse interpretations and usage depending on timing. Observing these quick progressions and being able to react and engage the online audience in real-time allows your brand to reach maximum exposure. Furthermore, generating shareable content in response to current events and trends is an easy path to organic word-of-mouth exposure.


A modern marketing strategy has to include the flexibility required to use social media. Subtly incorporating overall branding messages into popular conversations requires a blend of traditional techniques and innovative approaches. It is also a hit-or-miss game involving persistence and becoming a part of the community: the Internet knows when it’s being advertised at.


One way to really connect and be personable is to conduct a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) where a spokesperson or representative spends or hour or more answering direct questions on Reddit’s dedicated page. While providing a chance to discuss current initiatives, it is also a platform to create humor as well as answer odd questions about the company or industry that may otherwise never come up. Many major celebrities and companies, including President Obama and astronauts then currently in space, have participated.


Netizens also love to learn. Providing educational opportunities sets your brand up as a thought leader and committed member of the international dialogue on any number of subjects. Responding to questions on Facebook and Twitter is a good start. Posting original infographics that do more than simply promote your company goes a bit further. Participating in online forums that actually explore complex topics and conduct their own ad hoc research for purely academic purposes makes your company’s brand valuable.


If you’re looking to take social media marketing seriously, give me a call or text at 847-363-5286 and I will consult with your business to get you on the right track.