In past few decades, social media has emerged universal and most prominently for content sharing, social networking, as well as online accessing. Owing to its dependability, reliability and instantaneous characteristics, social media platforms such as Facebook open a broad place for Australian companies such as online marketing. (Kim, Angella J., and Eunju Ko. 2012) define this type of marketing which takes place through the social media as social media marketing. This contemporary marketing strategy has made possible for businesses to reach targeted customers with ease, efficiently and instantaneously. In addition to that, social media marketing has as well encountered quite a lot of challenges in the field and hence associated with some disadvantages. This literature review paper will elaborate on the usage of social media platforms in businesses particularly the concomitant advantages and disadvantages in the light of various theoretical works. Several materials are selected and critically examined to reveal the communalities/similarities, differences and conclusions drawn by different authors. Based on the discussion and analysis, the paper will later point out potential gaps in the literature provided by the arguers.
In their work, “SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING: ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES,” Nadaraja and Yazdanifard, discuss the concomitant merits and drawbacks associated with the widespread usage of social media in marketing. According to them, social media platforms such as Facebook have not only aided in cutting off business expenditures but also they have augmented social interactions, interactivity, target marketing, as well as enhancing customer service (Rubathee Nadaraja, Rashad Yazdanifard n.d). However, just as Arca hints, this upcoming trend in business has come along with some setbacks which have created complications and challenges for various business processes. Nadaraja and Yazdanifard point out several of such negative issues linked with the utilization of social media which include; time intensiveness, trust, privacy and security issue, negative feedbacks, and the propagation of User-Generated Content (UGC) through social media. The writers conclude that Social media networks can be instituted at any place as long as there is an Internet connection, and it ought to be put into consideration by advertisers, marketers, as well as online content inventors as a rudimentary fragment of their communications since social media touches on all aspects of the Internet and transmutes the role played by the Internet in people’s lives. However, while doing so, it is imperative for the companies to recognize the disadvantages linked with the application of various social medial networks because they can function against the objectives of the business.
Celine Arca, (2012), in her report “Social Media Marketing benefits for businesses,” just like Nadaraja and Yazdanifard discusses in depth the benefits and limitations of using social media in businesses such as restaurants. According to Arca, Social Media sites provide corporations, for example, Mac Donald Hundry Jack, with a great assortment of resources in regard to social media channels available, as well as the huge diversity of merits, such as product experience, and targeted traffic (Arca 2012). Nevertheless, application of social media platforms in businesses such as food manufacturing companies also demands for human efforts and sheer hard work, and it carries its own limitations and hazards before attaining noteworthy success. As opposed to (Kaur, Gurpreet 2016), Arca suggests that social media systems need to be scrutinized for efficiency before employing them in any business processes. Her conclusion is in line with Nadaraja and Yazdanifard who suggest that outcomes of the social media in business strategy are supposed to be monitored and measured frequently in attempt to comprehend what works and what does not.
Popova, in her work “THE GOOD AND BAD OF SOCIAL NETWORKS” tends to take a different line of argument. Unlike the preceding discussions by the authors, Dr. Diana Popova, discusses the impact of social networks like Facebook not only on businesses but also on the lives of individuals, and the society at large. According to Popova, The opportunities which social networks bring forward are viewed as both freedoms and limitations contingent to who and why utilizes them (Assoc. Prof. Dr. Diana Popova n.d) This point of argument is contrary to the conclusions made by Arca that these social media platforms, regardless of who uses them results to negative occurrences if they are bound to. However, just as Nadaraja and Yazdanifard suggests, Popova hints that the usage of social medial platforms cannot be denounced but instead their negative impacts should be minimized by identifying what works best and what does not.
Jadoon’s line of thought seems to take a similar stance to that of Popova. According to him, social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, among others should not be viewed as causing changes in the companies but in the social order as well. He therefore, recommends that one should consider how safe and time saving a network is before investing so heavily on its usage within the corporation (Jadoon n.d.). He further supports Arca’s point of argument that not always the case that social media contributes positive upshots in the life of a business, but sometimes comes along with some hazards which if not mitigated might lower the overall performance of its key metrics. Therefore, Jadoon emphasizes that businesses should be aware of the associated hazards versus the concomitant rewards. Nonetheless, contrary to the general outlooks of the other arguers, Jadoon concludes that businesses should be fully responsible for their own safety and they ought to strive to stand out of the crowd by not doing things of the majority.
On the other hand, Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), in their article incepts their work by stating that the benefits associated with social networking networks such as Facebook and Twitter differ depending on platform type, its unique features and the corporation itself. SHRM line of reasoning tends to be more-inclusive and comprehensive than that of the preceding writers. For instance, they view the whole issue of social media and business as affected by both internal and external publics who make use of the sites such as the employees (Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 2012). For instance, they point out that workers might compromise the security of the company they are working with when using their social media platforms such as Facebook pages. As opposed to the conclusions put forward by majority of the writers selected for this paper, Society for Human Resource Management association culminates their article by saying that stakeholders, both external and internal should be guided with a policy which should not be violated for any reason whatsoever.
Caruso, in his work also addresses the big question of the impacts of social media, but unlike the aforementioned works, he specifically discusses the in regard to a restaurant. Just as Popova says, the usage of social media cannot be denounced; rather a restaurateur should acquaint himself with the pros and cons of restaurant social media marketing (Caruso 2016). However, unlike Popova Caruso focuses more on the company’s ability to wave away the drawbacks linked to social media platforms such as negative reviews and increased expenditures. Caruso also emphasizes on the point expressed by (Kwok, L. and Yu, B., 2013)that restaurants should opt for the social media platforms that suit the needs of the targeted consumers. He gives an example of a cafeteria whose main market is composed of teenagers and suggests that such a business may opt to use platforms such as Snapchat, Facebook or Instagram.
Potential Gaps in the Literature
Research gap according to (Kim, Paul, Shic, and Scassellati 2012)is a research problem or question which the author has not answered properly or at all in a particular field of study. This aspect is evident in our literature review as elaborated in this section of the paper.
Despite the fact that Nadaraja and Yazdanifard touch? on the issue of propagation of negative information by the unsatisfied customers via the social media, the writers underemphasize on this critical issue. They do not provide in depth explanation of the major causes of the occurrences and their impact on the success of the company and how they can be tamed. Customer forms the nerve center of any typical company in existence because every businessperson strives to attract and maintain a reliable customer base which the social media threatens to diminish. Therefore, this particular issue should have been accorded a deeper clarification in this work.
Besides, Arca in her work provides the reader with a superficial explanation on the topic of measuring efficiency of any social media network. While it is clear that the efficacy of a social media site such as Facebook is critical, its efficiency is dictated by the need of the company as well as its capability to accomplish intended purpose. The writer fails to elaborate on the criteria to be followed while gauging the effectiveness of any given platform and this would be of paramount importance to any researcher investigating on the efficiency of social media platforms.
Even though Popova tends to me more diverse in her work, she leaves a niche while attempting to explain the impact social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter have on the social order and how they eventually influence the business. It is not clear in her report how the impacts of social media to individuals and society translate into a factor stimulating or hampering success of a business. Apparently, as emphasized by (Kaur, Gurpreet 2016) a slight influence on the wellbeing of the society eventually affects success of the business. Take for instance, the extensive usage of social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, where users from different parts of the world have been able to associate. These people meet online and in the process of interacting share critical ideas which can be refined into viable business opportunities. Top executives for big business conglomerates interact on the social media platforms and share views on how overall productivity of the business can be augmented.
While it is true from Jadoon’s work that social media sites come along with some risks which when not properly mitigated can impact on the viability of the business, the author fails to expound on the steps one can follow while extenuating such hazards. It could have been important providing another researcher with a clear and vibrant procedure of dealing with several perils associated with the usage of the contemporary media platforms. This is so because the risks are the ones termed as disadvantages by majority of the arguers. Therefore, deducing a systematic risk alleviation procedure would help significantly in lowering the shortcomings of these sites.
This literature review paper has expounded on the advantages and disadvantages of social media on the current business operations. Views of different writers in this particular field have been analyzed to reveal their converging and diverging points, and from this, it is evident that more researches need to be conducted. These theoretical works have tried to identify the major advantages and disadvantages associated with the prevalent application of internet-facilitated sites. While they all reveal that the technology media have many advantages and disadvantages based on the modern firms, and many businesses still strive to find the right way to use it, they fail to provide the best course of actions of handling the drawbacks which sometimes might outdo the number of advantages.
Arca, C 2012, 'Social Media Marketing benefits for businesses', Why and how should every business create and develop its Social Media Sites?, p. 89.
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Diana Popova n.d, 'the Good And Bad Of Social Networks', Social Networks Today.
Caruso, F 2016, 'Advantages and disadvantages of Social Media Marketing for Restaurants', Home » Digital Marketing » Advantages and disadvantages of Social Media Marketing for Restaurants, 6 october 2016.
Jadoon, RN, 'Advantages and Disadvantages of Social'.
Kaur, Gurpreet 2016, 'Social Media Marketing', Asian Journal of Multidisciplinary Studies, vol no. 7 , p. 4.
Kim, Angella J., and Eunju Ko. 2012, 'Do social media marketing activities enhance customer equity? An empirical study of luxury fashion brand', ournal of Business Research, vol 65, no. 10, pp. 1480-1486.
Kim, Paul, Shic, and Scassellati 2012, 'Bridging the research gap: Making HRI useful to individuals with autism.'.
Kwok, L. and Yu, B., 2013, 'Spreading social media messages on Facebook: An analysis of restaurant business-to-consumer communications.', Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, vol 54(1), , pp. 84-94.
Rubathee Nadaraja, Rashad Yazdanifard n.d, 'social Media Marketing: Advantages And Disadvantages', Social Media Marketing, p. 10.
Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 2012, 'Social Media: What are the advantages and disadvantages of social networking sites? What should we include in a policy?', 1 Jun 2012, viewed 4 June 2017, <