Transformation of Traditional Marketing Communications in to Paradigms of Social Media Networking

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Transformation of Traditional Marketing Communications in to Paradigms of Social Media Networking T.R. Gopalakrishnan Nair and Kumarashvari Subramaniam
Effective Communication for marketing is a vital field in business organizations, which is used to convey the details about their products and services to the market segments and subsequently to build long lasting customer relationships. This paper focuses on an emerging component of the integrated marketing communication, ie. social media st networking, as it is increasingly becoming the trend. In 21 century, the marketing communication platforms show a tendency to shift towards innovative technology bound people networking which is becoming an acceptable domain of interaction. Though the traditional channels like TV, print media etc. are still active and prominent in marketing communication, the presences of the Internet and more specifically the Social Media Networking, has started influencing the way individuals and business enterprises communicate. It has become evident that more individuals and business enterprises are engaging the social media networking sites either to accelerate the sales of their products and services or to provide post-purchase feedbacks. This shift in scenario has motivated this research which took six months (June 2011 – December 2011), using empirical analysis which is carried out based on several primary and secondary evidences. The research paper also analyzes the factors that govern the social media networking sites to influence consumers and subsequently enable their purchase decisions. The secondary data presented for this research were those pertaining to the period between the year 2005 and year 2011. The study revealed promising facts like the transition to marketing through SMN gives visible advantages like bidirectional communication, interactive product presentation, and a firm influence on customer who has a rudimentary interest. It is also important to note that sampling studies mostly dealt with fortune 500 companies. It gives promising results of providing virtual shopping experience and interactive marketing through Social media networks.

Field of Research: Marketing communication, Social Media Networking

1.0 Introduction
The marketing mixes primarily focuses on four key parameters, i.e. product, price, promotion and place. However, in this study the promotion or the Marketing Communication (MC) parameter will be discussed as it is a vital field in business organizations.

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Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University, Aramco Endowed Chair, Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University, Al Khobar, 31952, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. trgnair@yahoo.com, www.trgnair.org Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University, Faculty, College of Business, Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd University, Al Khobar, 31952, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. eiswary@hotmail.com, ksubramaniam@pmu.edu.sa

MC is used to convey the details about a business organization‟s products and services to the market segments and subsequently to build long lasting customer relationships. In 21st century, the MC platforms show a tendency to shift towards people networking which is innovative and technology bound. It is also becoming an acceptable domain of interaction. Though the Traditional Marketing Communication (TMC) channels like TV, print media, physical public relations, trade fairs etc. are still active and prominent in MC, the presences of the Internet and more specifically the Social Media Networking (SMN) has revolutionized the way individuals and business enterprises communicate. Even though at the initial stage the Internet was perceived as a “virtual announcement board” but in recent years, i.e. since 2006 or 2007 it has evolved steadily and has constructively incorporates the SMN. The SMN sites, to name a few - such as Facebook (http://www.facebook.com), flickr (http://www.flickr.com), YouTube (http://www.youtube.com), allow individuals to be...
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