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Our generation is considered fluent in everything related to social media. The moniker “millennials” is used to identify us and as per Wikipedia, this generation is generally marked by an increased use and familiarity with communications, media, and digital technologies. Rightly so, as we are always on the top of our game when it comes to letting the world know about our (in)famous escapades, making relentless status updates and making sure that the world knows what we are up to. You can enjoy the scenic beauty of Goa , sitting in the comfort of your home through the video updates posted by your friend Riya, albeit comes with a tinge of jealousy.

The world has indeed become a small place. However, social media is not always as useless as is it touted to be by most people of the older generations. In fact, it has become one of the most important platforms for all major organizations to promote and sell their products and services. Certainly, social media has a reach like no other form of media. Take for example, newspapers and magazines or as we call it, the print media. In today’s bustling world, people barely have the time to actually sit down and read a full fledged newspaper, let alone look out for product advertisements. Again, if we consider Televisions, then their reach is again limited as you can’t really carry your TV around with you, hence restricting the viewership to stay at home parents, senior citizens and kids. Not your ideal market if you’re looking for a customer base consisting power-driven business honchos, is it?

But social media. That is everywhere. You can access it through your phones which you have on you most of the time (unless you’re a Neanderthal, in which case you wouldn’t be reading this anyway). And if something piques your interest, checking it out takes hardly a minute. Social media giants such as Facebook have started including advertisements even in the middle of videos. Initially it was extremely irritating even though the advertisements played for just about 10 seconds, however, now I hardly ever stop watching a video just because an ad interrupted it. See, you get accustomed to everything. Facebook earns its revenue, the company successfully markets its product and even though you didn’t mean to, you actually got to know about a superb holiday deal because of the ad that interrupted the adorable video of puppies you were watching. Everybody wins!

Another reason why social media is an excellent marketing tool is because of its wide ranging customer base. You will find everyone on some form of social media, right from your local grocer to your dreaded boss, everyone “updating their status”. And you also attract all age groups. Kids as young as ten year old are now on social media and so are grannies. So if your company sells candies and well as canes, social media will definitely be instrumental in helping you garner your customers’ trust.

Now let’s look into a major deciding factor-cost. Every organization looks for cost effective methods of marketing. Another plus point for social media marketing, and I’ll tell you why. One defining metric that defines the better option between traditional media and social media is cost per thousand impressions (CPM).

CPM is an advertising metric that measures how many advertising dollars you must spend to reach 1,000 people. The goal should be to reach as many relevant people as possible at the lowest cost. To put it in context, where a newspaper advertisement costs $16, an ad on social media costs a mere $2.50- a difference of almost $14! At a time when most organizations are looking for cost cutting ventures, this feels god-sent. Most marketing options further include additional or “hidden” costs. With direct mail there’s you have print and mailing costs. Similarly, with TV and radio, you have to consider the spike in prices during peaks times to advertise (rush hour traffic or popular shows). Billboard prices can also range based on quality of traffic and location. When it comes to social media marketing, there’s one hidden fixed cost – time. Whether it is your time, an employee’s time, or an agency’s time, it must be considered as a cost.

Every organization, big or small, looks to make a mark on social media. This is because of its immense power of being able to reach as many peoplewithin a very short span of time. Things like GRC management which was not known to most people just a few years back, have become a major part of conversations in almost all business ventures. This is again, because of social media. GRC management tools such as VComply also use this platform to reach as many people, not just to publicize the tool itself, but also make people aware about what GRC is.

So the next time you just dismiss social media as a platform for young men and women to show off, think again because it could turn out to be a huge marketing asset for your organization. Not all that we millennials endorse in, is completely bad, you see?

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