The Pew Internet and American Life website focuses on various social aspects of the society. It takes into consideration numerous activities that are carried out by individuals through the Internet, for example, business transaction, social networking, academics, and search for information and health issues.
According to a review of the websites, the world today has become fully digital. This is a digital age and a huge number of people are currently using the Internet for various purposes, ranging from education and studies, entertainment, social networking, researches, marketing of organizations products and services through Internet advertising and shopping among other activities.
Different people use the Internet for different purposes. For instance, teens, youths and some adults use the Internet for social networking and entertainment. Students and other scholars use it for academic purposes and carrying out researches and other study related activities. Similarly, parents may use the Internet for shopping (Katz & Rice, 2002). It is also evident that a good number of working class people are using Internet to carry out duties away from office. Organization managers use the Internet for networking and linking with potential customers and business partners. They also link with other professionals using the Internet.
According to Katz and Rice, many organizations carry out their researches on available business opportunities in various segments of the market through the Internet (Katz & Rice, 2002). Another interesting article on the website is The Rise of the E-Patient. In my view, this article provides resourceful information that is very useful in the health and medicine industry. Doctors, nurses, healthcare providers and other stakeholders can get a lot of information concerning the future trends in healthcare provision. According to the article, the number of patients who are currently using the Internet for researching on various illnesses has incredibly increased.
Based on this information, marketing managers in hospitals and other health facilities can devise and formulate effective Internet marketing techniques for their products and services. They can come up with the Internet based consultation platform where patients interactively communicate with doctors. It is revealed that most Internet users visit websites unprompted, spontaneously and in an unplanned manner. Some individuals come to the Internet to communicate with others, whereas a good number of people visit the Internet to seek information. Moreover, other individuals visit web pages to create and add content in their blogs. Business people use the Internet for commercial purposes such as online transactions.
It is evident that when a person finds something interesting or worthwhile in a given website, he/she will revisit the website routinely. Businesspersons and marketing professionals can thus retain, attract and induce more people to visit their organizations’ websites by including interesting contents in the websites. For example, advertisement websites may include a chat room where potential customers can chat directly or one-on-one with the customer care assistants. High quality images and graphics of the products that are selling can as well be included.
Gathering Secondary Information through the Internet
As stated in the website, the Internet can be a vital source for collecting and gathering secondary data. Business consultants can use Internet search engines to look for information they want. The search engines may be very effective since they offer expanded searches. In addition, they provide searches that are restricted to certain specific or key words thus allows for customized collection of data. They also offer a variety of web pages to choose from. Another advantage of using Internet search engines is that it does not limit the number of sources of information or the number of searches that can be performed at a given time. It also requires less financing and consumes less time during data collection.
Dangerous Internet Users’ Behaviors
However, it is important to note a few dangers associated with collection of secondary data through the Internet that any consultant should take caution against. The sue Internet may require sharing of too much information, for example, customers may be forced to share and reveal their personal details such as place of residence, telephone numbers and age. Such information can be accessed and used by fraudsters for evil purposes. In my opinion, therefore, it is important for the business to ensure security, privacy and confidentiality of data and information received from customers and other business stakeholders. Business consultants must ensure that any information given to them by the consumers is not shared with anybody else without the individual’s permission.
According to my review, most people using the Internet assume that web links are equally safe and may click on them without appropriate prior caution. In my view, this is not the case since such links may be very dangerous. Some pop-up windows may contain malwares and viruses. It is also advisable for Internet users to regularly update their Anti-virus programs to ensure maximum protection against infection by Internet viruses, malwares and Trojans. It is also advisable for Internet users to avoid using the same password for multiple websites. This is may lead to unnecessary exposure.
In conclusion, for business consultants to effectively collect and gather data from the Internet, he/she should be well conversant with the available sources of the information he/she wants. A good understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of such information is also vital. For example, the reliability of such information collected from the Internet. A consultant may ask himself whether a sound business decision can be made relying on data and information from the Internet.
As a marketing consultant, one must first understand the behaviors of the consumers such as purchasing pattern, in order to effectively plan and organize the marketing strategies. The Internet may offer readily available sources of information relating to such behaviors if properly used, and thus it is a resourceful tool.