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New Media Marketing Growth

Nov 7, 2007
Video, audio, text or other forms of communication that is two-way, and enabled or distributed through the Internet, is often referred to as the new media.

Despite the proven efficiency, marketing communications online have still not been appreciated or understood as well as these should be. The marketing mix should be designed after giving due consideration to management of the company's reputation online, as the media business continues its shift towards the World Wide Web.

Product reviews, blogs, message boards and podcasts, among other mechanisms, are part of online communities that provide forums, where suggestions, questions, criticism, praises, etc., are posted. The businesses often take an active part in the establishment of such communities, so that customers who feel satisfied by their services or products can come together and share their experiences. All this forms part of the concept of new media and incorporates a fair level of transparency.

Rather than believing advertising dispensed through the print media, television, direct mail and radio, consumers are increasingly known to believe opinions and advice obtained from peers, who have tried out a service or product. Referrals and Internet research are the basis of decisions to purchase, more than ever before, and statistical evidence is now available to show that there is truth in this contention. Therefore, the premise that points towards influence among consumers being lost by advertising of the traditional type is gaining credence and can be used as a powerful argument in favor of the promotion of new media marketing.

Potential risks might actually be mitigated through answers that are transparent and honest and aimed at solving issues, even though one view is that weaknesses of the business are likely to be exposed to competitors, besides individuals, who might post comments that could be highly critical, at times.

Podcasts, blogs, web video productions, RSS and other such technology applications driven by the Internet effectively aid the process of new media marketing.

Despite that, numerous organizations are yet to engage customers in online communication.

This is often because:

1. Several individuals have been asked to leave employment on account of some of the content on their blogs having been found to be objectionable by their employers. So, it is evident that many companies still do not have proper guidelines in place for employees who engage in digital communication.

2. Often, it is not clearly specified as to which department is supposed to interact online, as part of the new media marketing process.

3. IT personnel are often required to assist public relations or marketing professionals with implementation of marketing initiatives that are based online, since they are not capable of doing it on their own. This is despite the fact that the key messages of the organization are meant to be articulated by the PR or marketing professionals.

4. Despite what is evident from the trends, marketing budgets of organizations continue to allocate more funds for traditional and, often, offline channels of communication, even as marketing communications that are based online continue to become more efficient.

5. The readership of newspapers continues to decline in the US and the broadcast audiences continue to become increasingly fragmented, along with increase in the hours spent online daily by users.

The following have also changed the situation in favor of the new media:

1. The growth of wikis, podcasts, blogs and other such media that are generated by consumers.

2. Conventional media is trusted less by people than in the past.

3. Since conventional media content has become homogenized, on account of consolidation in the entertainment and media industries, some niche markets are not being catered to sufficiently.

The capacity of conventional media to cover daily happenings is increasingly becoming restricted, partly on account of the advent of new media. So, as the impact created by press releases in the conventional media decreases, it is advisable for companies to leverage new media to communicate with existing as well as prospective customers or clients, rather than corporate communications or public relations. This should be done despite the attempts of newspaper companies to overcome the challenges they are surrounded with.

Database marketing, websites, content management, blogs, search optimization and podcasts should all be employed as a part of the new media marketing communications programs.
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