A few short years ago MySpace, Facebook and others of their ilk were considered to be a domain of the young. Only college and high school types would use this kind of technology. Actually, this was the original target audience of these sites. Now, MySpace alone has more than 200 million members. That is far too large a number for professional marketers to ignore.
Anywhere there are 200 million people there is a huge opportunity to transmit messages of a business or marketing nature. One of the first commercial users of these sites was a band. Soon radio stations jumped on board. These groups set up profiles that showcased their music and offerings, which translated into sales from their performances and increased listeners. Since the model worked well for the musicians and the radio stations, others jumped on the bandwagon. The downside is that this is an opt-in environment. The opt-in basis has spawned a whole new type of spammer who sends out massive numbers of requests for friends. The hope is that a big enough percentage of people will opt-in and a percentage of them will buy your products. If an outright marketing or commercial application is discovered by the site, then that account is usually deactivated. Social networks should be a part of your overall marketing strategy, but you must understand the rules and regulations that govern them. Do you have any suggestions on how to use social networks to your advantage?