Social Networking … love it or hate it?
A social networking service is an online service, platform, or website that focuses on building and reflecting social networks or social relations among people, who, for example, share interests and activities.
It is also used by people with similar interests, backgrounds and activities to make their own communities online. A social network service consists of a profile for each user, his/her social links, and a variety of additional services. Most social network services are web-based and provide means for users to interact over the Internet, such as e-mail and instant messaging. Online community services are sometimes considered as a social network service, though in a broader sense, social network service usually means an individual-centered service whereas online community services are group-centered. Social networking sites allow users to share ideas, activities, events, and interests within their individual networks. Silverhairs is an example of this featuring forums and blogs where users can comment and share information and interests.
Facebook is by far and away the largest social networking site globally, although until only a few years ago it was really considered only for the under 30s but it has now become truly a global phenomenon with over 900 million users and has become the largest flotation of any company in the USA. Facebook can be used to keep in touch with friends and family and to store and share photos. People of all ages are now using it and some of the biggest brands in business have Facebook as is a totally accepted forum to reinforce their brand and enhance brand loyalty. See examples like www.facebook.com/marksandspencer and www.facebook.com/britishairways.
For companies like these and others it is a fairly inexpensive way to spread the brand and for customers to advise to other customers they like the product. On the other side customers can also place complaints on the company’s Facebook site but this does give the company a chance to comment and try and address the complaint quickly keeping the customer happy!
What are your views on Socail Networking and do you have a Facebook account?