What Is The Difference Between Online Marketing And Social Media Marketing?

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Although not known to many social media marketing is different from online marketing. This leads to the question what is the difference between online marketing and social media marketing?

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Social media marketing is when marketing efforts compel social media users to naturally and willing share information with their connections. Social media marketing is an aspect of online marketing only that it’s limited to a smaller area within the larger online marketing boundaries. we can therefor summarize social media marketing as gaining of website traffic through use of social media platforms.

Social media marketing is a very powerful way of marketing since it helps businesses to build and maintain relationship with their clients. It enables crowd sourcing, provides faster communication channels at cheaper cost. In brief it is known as electronic word of mouth.

Online marketing is the holistic perception of what happens in the internet with the intention of attracting attention to a website, product or service. SOE (search engine optimization), social media marketing, email marketing, websites, blogs and other forms of paid online advertisements constitute online marketing. Online marketing has been in existence for long with banner adverts being one of its original form. It uses social media marketing as a component among others to achieve results.


There have been fears of online marketing and social media marketing merging and being one and the same thing. This is not going to happen they are and will always remain to be different things. Social media supports and extends online marketing by directly linking customers and potentials to the business. You may choose to call social media a channel for conveying content availed online. With the current trends of rising use of social media to market one without the other is almost useless.

You would agree with me that great information is always shared. This is what drives social media marketing it enable sharing of information in a genuine easy way. It really saves on costs since largely social media marketing is cheap, requires no large sums of money and can easily be done by one person reaching out to a bigger crowd.

An advantage of doing online marketing in general without limiting a business to social media marketing is that a business has access to wider market. Unlike social media marketing where it is done within the social networks only, online marketing cuts across many sites. It could require more effort but when done well it is more effective.

Mostly social media marketing is used to create awareness around a brand and retaining customers in the long run. They enable discussions between businesses and customers on any topics of interest to the customers. On the other hand online market in general seeks to generate demand for a businesses’ product or service. The higher the traffic to a business website the better chance of conversion of a potential to a loyal client or purchase of product.

The final objective of marketing is action, as a business you need to determine you target market, steps you will take to reach them and the final results you want. Choose a form of marketing that fits your needs.  Hopefully this has outlined the difference between online marketing and Social Media Marketing.

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