Technology supports the functionality of the internet. Using internet services requires basic technical skills of operating a computer and surfing the web (Waters, 2010). This has led to the use of social networks by many people. People go to the internet to seek information, make friends and entertain themselves. It has also been widely noticed that even the slightest failures in technology can lead to disastrous effects. For example, on September 8th 2008, the London Stock Exchange stopped trading for some hours due to a failure by network software to interlink various trading programs. Financial analysts contemplated that many companies lost billions of dollars, since that day was the best for market trading. It is an example that shows that technology may not be reliable at all times.
Zarrella (2009) defines internet as a network where people connect with offline and online friends. Social networks are a hot topic for marketers because they present a number of opportunities for interacting with customers through fan pages and groups.Before the introduction of the web, there were Bulletin Board Systems. These were internet forums that allowed groups of users to log onto a computer network and interact with one other. The users relied on phone lines and extremely slow modems to make the connection. They could upload and download software and data, exchange messages and read announcements. Bulletin Board Services emerged in the 1970s. Hobbyists and corporate systems operators operated Bulletin Board Systems, and hosted users in their machines. These Bulletins covered a range of topics and interest areas that included games, politics and dating.
In the 1990s the World Wide Web arrived, and the usage of Bulletin Board Services declined. Online service providers took over. Internet forums of people with matching interests accessed digital meeting places for discussions of a range of topics. In the year 2003, Mark Zuckerberg hacked into Harvard University’s private dorm ID database and created Facemash. The site let students to compare two ID photos to select the most attractive one. Soon after, Zuckerberg established Facebook, a social network that began as an exclusive site for Harvard students. Later, it allowed other colleges to join, and in 2006, anyone with an email could join. Excellent examples of modern services providing access to groups are Google and Yahoo. Nowadays the internet has advanced their services to users to offer a range of services.
It has never been easy or cheap to develop global campaigns with promotional messages that can reach consumers all around the world. The internet has made all versions of advertisements to be only a few strokes away. Online social communities have grown drastically across the globe. This has led to changes in the world of communication. Many forms of social interaction have moved online leading to evolution of personal forms of communication in the online world. This has led to the start up of interactions between individuals with others and organizations.
The internet has been a place to conduct market research. It has also become a place for market researchers to network and share ideas. They also look for jobs and simply have fun using internet. They form new and dynamic groups of friends and followers because they are active users of social networks. In Facebook, market researchers make friends and use their status to talk about research topics. They also join specialist research groups. The marketers use their research findings to design marketing strategies and change business operations.
In the internet ,there exist is an online platform, service, or site that aims at establishing and reflecting societal relations among persons with same interests or activities in the world since it is a tool that connects people from all over the world. There exist social networks mostly operating under the web. They have means of interactions between individuals to share events, activities, ideas and interests within networks. Within the internet there exists social networks that allow instant messaging whereby persons send messages and receive feedback immediately. Online community services are social networks. A network society is society where micro-electronic based information and communication technologies power its networks (Hoffmann, 2011). A social network is a group of interacting people with relationships amongst themselves regardless of their location.