Which social media marketing tools does Sony use? What advertisement methods does Sony use? How does Sony conduct its campaigns? What are the possible risks of using social media in this way? How...

Which social media marketing tools does Sony use? What advertisement methods does Sony use? How does Sony conduct its campaigns? What are the possible risks of using social media in this way? How could Sony improve the way it uses social media for advertising/marketing? Thank you for answering these questions!

Expert Answers
M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

According to Econsultancy.com, Sony has a worldwide strategy for social media that hits nearly every consumer niche: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus, and Instagram. According to Sony itself, their statement is that they participate in social media to 

listen, learn and share stories of the passionate people who...bring Sony to life

Facebook seems to be the strongest link for Sony's page because this social media venue allows for more typing space so that users such as those who are PS4 fans can form forums. In fact, out of all of the Facebook pages that Sony has created for EACH of their products, it is no surprise that the gaming ones for PlayStation are the highest ranking ones. There are separate pages for Sony camera fanatics, and others for Sony Music Online, among many more such as smartphones, tablets, recording gear, headphones, and even casual ware. This being said, Sony has taken care of each of their demographics based on data that shows the popularity of each product. 

Sony interacts with clients answering questions, providing feedback for comments and statements, and welcoming new ideas. With more than 3 million fans it is certain that Sony can use Facebook for promotion, customer support, to test the market, and to get the overall feel of how the company is doing. 

Twitter is actually more followed by Sony fans than Facebook, although it is hard to compare numbers because Sony also has several different Twitter accounts depending on what the product or issue is. For example, "Ask Play Station" is, both, the Twitter handle  and the hashtag used for customer support and questions that are to be filtered out only for Play Station and PS4 users. Twitter's 140 character capacity is effective for sending out catchy teasers, new memes, game ideas, and quick information about new products. 

Sony is marketing to the Millennial generation using Twitter as a quick-access source which today's younger crowd seems to appeal to the most. Similarly, it cleverly uses Facebook as a more in-depth resource where more can be written and said, and where forums can form and talk without limits.

Pinterest is the best way to build a photo album by themes and access it immediately from any smart device. Sony's Pinterest page is a large display of cameras, sound systems, games, consoles, and every imaginable gadget that the company has produced. It even gives you the history of Sony products, which cleverly displays the development of technology at the company,showing how it keeps with the times in terms of the needs of customers. 

Instagram, which is an application made to show creative photographs in one of the most widely used by Millennials today. Just like with Pinterest, Instagram offers a glimpse into not only the products, but also the people behind Sony. This is a smart way of promoting the company because Instagram is known for its casual look and feel. To put "snippets" of people working at Sony, or employees and customers trying out the new products says a lot about the culture and tone of the corporation, and makes it look approachable, relatable, and even familiar. 

Google Plus, the latest Google access point, is used to feature new products. Google Plus is also based on gaining followers, and those followers can be divided into categories. This way, Sony can filter specific information for followers that want information on a certain product. For example, the camera Google Plus page will show pictures, news, and latest info on cameras that are being featured. All that Sony needs to do is make a "post", make it public, and wait for fans to add a "plus" to the Google thread to show that they liked the feature. It is almost the same system as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram following the "I like" protocol.

Currently social media helps nearly every single corporation that intends to sell goods or services in the whole wide world. Never before has self-promotion been so instantaneous, so ubiquitous, or so inexpensive. Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram are FREE services that multibillion dollar companies such as Sony can access and gain exposure from just like the any of our neighbors next door. It is important, however, to know that there is a huge difference between a social media page and an official corporate page.

As important as it is to keep up with social media, it is of equal importance to keep a well-maintained corporate website for Sony.com and its affiliates. Most importantly, it is imperative to keep the content completely separate for the purpose of accountability and out of respect for all the investors, both public and private, that help maintain the corporation.

The official page of a company or organization should be completely transparent. It should show the mission and vision of the corporation, its statistics, its outreach, job opportunities, and everything that has to do with logistics and regulations. This is the "face" of the corporation and should not reflect any subjectivity. Such is the case with Sony.com.

The social media pages, however, are allowed more leeway. They are used to connect with, well, society: Jokes, comments, conversations, chats, picture exchange, and interactions are all allowed in social media pages. Even complaints and rants have been posted on social media, with Sony customer and social media representatives responding quite politely and with a great sense of humor in many occasions. 

Again, the potential for exposure, expansion and gaining new followers has never been easier for any corporation in the world. It is through social media that they can create and expand an online "presence" that is felt by all potential customers worldwide. 

There are no dangers of using these applications, save for the potential mistake of combining the information included in the main, official page, with that of social media pages. As long as the two "sides" of Sony, the friendly and the professional, can remain equally empowered on their own, the more chances to be more veritable in today's competitive market.