Social media has been identified as the means for people to interact, create, share, and/or exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks. Social media is different from traditional or industrial media. It has become a means of advertisement in such a way that it holds the qualities of permanence, cost, quality, frequency and scope (Katona and Miklos 142). In the 2013, there are social media platforms which became popular including as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Flickr, Tumblr, Instagram, and others. In fact, the total time spent on social media in the U.S. on PC and mobile devices increased significantly for the past years (Katona and Miklos 142).
Social media has become the place for activism of adult and youth alike. It will encourage violence within the community because of the reforms they want to institute in the community. Social media has also become a medium of communication to air the grievances of the public by allowing them to make cyber protests. Social media has negative effect since it triggers activism and violence. Digital activism enables the public to communicate their disgust, frustration and annoyance when they see wrongdoings committed by the government or persons in authority (Amin 64). Some of the big protest movements are initiated by social media which results to digital activism that may place a community under siege.
There are also come companies who use social media such as Facebook for business purposes. It has become the reason for most of the companies to connect and establish ties with people they know. Studies show that at least 71 percent of the U.S. companies have used (Katona and Miklos 142). On the other hand, 57 percent of these companies used a brand or a vendor. Some of the companies used advertisements and sponsored post to promote their products and services. This will enable the company to know their market reach depending on the number of likes seen as the viewers clicked their pages (Katona and Miklos 142).
Many had seen that there has been an increased in the number of companies that had used the social media to create a positive image (Kuvykaite & Piligrimiene 305). However, the nature of social media communication can also pose a possible risk for image of the company if the information is not assessed appropriately. It is important to note that the companies stand to lose their positive image immediately by wrong publicity. It is disappointing that social media can ruin the corporate image and good that took a long time to establish. By closely scrutiny, it can be inferred that communication in social media is more complicated than the other traditional means of communication. Social media can influence consumer response and intercommunication within a particular industry. Hence, there is a high probability for company to control and manage the content of communication that they want to impart to the public. The success of social media communication on image formation is dependent on the information disseminated in social media. Thus, there should be proper management of new technologies and communication channels in order to develop trust and relationship created through social media.
In a world that is governed by globalization and competition in the market is growing rapidly and the a person or a company‘s image can be influenced by social media. In effect, social media becomes an important tool to help companies survive in competitive environment. For companies, social media can help ensure the success of the company by improving its performance. Social media can help establish public relations to develop positive image through internet technologies. For companies, they use new channels of communication such as Facebook and Twitter, to enhance and maintain sustain positive image to promote customer trust.
For individuals, such as political candidates, they use social media by positive opinion by manipulating their image using Facebook. Social media can also opens opportunities for persons and companies to use various means for positive image development and attracting media attention.
Amin, Ramtin. “The Empire Strikes Back: Social Media Uprisings and the Future of Cyber Activism:. Kennedy School Review, 10, (2010): 64-66.
Katona, Zsolt, and Miklos Sarvary. "Maersk Line: B2B Social Media-It’s Communication, Not Marketing.” California Management Review 56.3 (2014): 142-156.
Kuvykaite, R., & Piligrimiene, Z. (2013). Communication in Social Media for the Company’s Image Formation. Economics & Management, 18(2), 305-317
Zailskaite-Jakste, Ligita, and Rita Kuvykaite. "Implementation Of Communication In Social Media By Promoting Studies At Higher Education Institutions." Engineering Economics 23.2 (2012): 174-188.