Sep 19, 2008

Email marketing and social networks: friends or foes?

I'm subscribed to quite a few social networks among which facebook, linkedin and plaxo.

All these have groups or hubs that can be created by users and in which people can join (invited or not).
I myself am registered to several groups of pure networking, event driven or company/artist "fan" list.

On all those networking websites you then have the possibility to send announcements to group members.

For example, I'm in a facebook group created by a kindergarten friend who's now a famous French rapper and I often receive internal messages announcing his upcoming gigs.

How far this is from email marketing?

Of course some things can be done with an email marketing tool:
Data mining, targeting, statistics, automated emails, alerts,...

But some things are only true in social networking messaging system:
- 100% free (even though email marketing is by far the less expensive direct marketing activity).
- 100% deliverability.

Should this be considered a new way of keeping in touch with friends/relatives or a new marketing tool?

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