At this point, practically everyone knows what social networks are, although there are those who do not really know the true power they have to promote an Internet business. Its appearance represented a significant change in the way we communicate, and its evolution has been adapting to the needs and trends that have appeared in these new times.
The technical definition of social networks suggests that they are structures “made up of a set of actors who are related according to some criteria. ” These individuals and organizations are grouped according to kinship, friendship, professional sector, cultural tastes, etc.
Purpose, uses and applications of social networks
The purpose of social networks on the Internet is to act as a powerful communication tool between different users who connect in the same virtual space. With the aim of sharing information, pouring opinions, establishing dialogues and undertaking many other forms of interaction.
IAB Spain, the advertising, marketing and digital communication association in Spain, whose main objective is to promote digital communication. establishes a series of requirements through its social media commission that these structures must meet to be considered as such.
In this sense, social networks should be a network of contacts. allow users to have a personal profile, promote interaction and offer different functionalities to be able to share content or participate in different communication forums, but also facilitate on the part of companies and businesses respond and even attend to the client in their requests and requests.
Types of social networks on the Internet
Currently, a large number of social networks operate on the Internet, which can be classified into very different types. However, in general terms, two major classifications can be made:
Horizontal social networks
They are also known by the term generalists, since they are those in which users congregate around a wide number of interests. with the aim of sharing information and engaging in general conversations, without focusing on any particular topic. Some of the best known are Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter…
Vertical social networks
They are those in which users gather around a more specific common interest. and in which the information that is shared and the conversations that are established revolve around that specific topic. LinkedIn, which is a professional network; Minube, which focuses on travel; o Instagram, where photos and videos are published, are some examples of this type of structure.
Specific classification of the types of social networks
Within the types of social networks, horizontal and vertical, a more specific classification can be made according to the theme around which each of them revolve. The selection, presence and use of each of them in business must respond to a well-defined strategy that positively influences the interests of the activity.Depending on the preferences, it is possible to find social networks that adapt to our needs perfectly. In the previous classification, the vast majority of networks currently used are cited, although many remained in the pipeline.
Social networks for companies
Social networks are powerful communication tools, thanks to which companies have many capabilities in their hands, such as the possibility of attracting and retaining customers, knowing their tastes, demands and needs to adapt the services provided or products offered to it. As well as interacting with your users and making your brand known to a much wider audience. among many other advantages.
When choosing which social networks a business should be present in. it is important to ask a series of questions that will serve to discover the keys to which of them best suits the requirements. It is essential to define the objectives to be achieved, the audience to whom the message is going to be directed and what the operation and possibilities of each of these social networks are.
At a professional level, these structures help increase brand awareness. reach potential customers, reinforce brand positioning, carry out campaigns by objectives, maintain direct contact with users, publicize products and services and care for online reputation.