Is Advertising, especially when integral to a company’s strategy, considered social media?

As I have been constructing my case study, this question has reared its ugly but intriguing head. Nancy Flynn’s definition (p. 332) emphasizes “user participation and user-generated content” which is maddeningly vague. Certainly, successful advertising includes user participation (purchase of a product or service) but “user-generated content”? Outside of a favorable product review or Yelp review, holding advertising to that definition means it probably doesn’t qualify as social media.

Yet my Subject Matter Expert for my case study easily moves back and forth from discussing “mainline” social media features (response time to Facebook posts, regularly scheduled updates, etc.) to discussing how advertising is placed and sucess metrics.




Posted on November 15, 2017, in Social Media. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. David,

    I’d say it depends on what data you have. What kind of advertising are you talking about? Self-advertising, where someone way make a post saying good things a company has done, that is definitely social media as long as you use a social media channel.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but it sounds like you may have even more interesting information, like how you are selling advertisements based on user information? Online advertising like this usually requires you identify traits of a user so that you can properly target those users with their browsing history and profile information on sites and social media. If this is true, then you are getting this “user information” from social media, most likely.

  2. Good points, Miriam and I appreciate that I was not precise enough. So I was referring to paid ads on Facebook, Twitter, et al.

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