by Iain Wilson
Twitter, Facebook, MySpace - the list goes on and on. Social networking is a phenomenon that looks like it's here to stay, but are people starting to tire of it all?
I know quite a few people who are heartily sick of being bombarded with social networking. They have no wish to share their thoughts with so-called followers or to post pictures of the latest booze-up they embarrassed themselves at. And the last thing they want to do is spend their valuable spare time exchanging private messages at their keyboards. Most, but not all, of these people fall into a certain age group - one that wouldn't be considered 'young'. Fair enough, no reason why people should like it, but you shouldn't ignore it.
The thing is that social networking is the modern way of communicating and it, or some variant of it, is here to stay. It will no doubt continue to evolve like things do and will probably become more sophisticated. The key thing is that millions of people are using it and that's why it could be useful to you - because if lots of people are doing something, you may be able to address them as a group and get your message to them.
Take Facebook, for example. They have 300 million users. That's obviously a lot of people. But here's the thing, you can segment that user base by different categories, so you message is just seen by the segments you want. You can choose things like geographic location, age, education, occupation, and other keywords - homing in on your target market. So when people in the group you've targeting log on to Facebook, your advertisement can be waiting for them. So even if you have no intentions of ever using one of these networks, it's still worth considering if your potential customers do and whether you can reach them through it.