APIs play a critical role in enhancing your day-to-day internet experience. Whether it is finding economical flight tickets, sharing an article from a blog site on your social media account, or using Google Maps to search nearby restaurants or shops, APIs are not only making life easier but also helping businesses enrich the digital experience and accelerate growth.
But what are marketing APIs, and how do they make an impact on your business? In this article, we will briefly discuss APIs, how they work, their role in marketing operations, and some top APIs to streamline your processes. So, let’s dive in!
What is an API and how does it work?
API or application programming interface is a way for different software applications to interact and exchange data with each other without the intervention from the end-user. If we break down the term, an application can include the apps you use on your smartphones or some other software programs you work with. Usually, developers use APIs to write software (code), hence the term programming, and interface represent how you interact with that application. Interestingly, since APIs do all the work in the backdrop, the digital experiences are seamless for the end-users.
APIs work based on rules or definitions using a set of predefined commands for inputs and outputs. They help deliver the request and get a response from one application to another in real-time.
- API endpoint: When API interacts with another application or system, then the communication touchpoints are known as the endpoints. The API endpoints can include a URL of a service or a server.
- API call: This is used to describe the process of submitting a request from a client application to the API of the server. The most common request methods include GET, POST, PUT and DELETE.
- API key: This is a unique identifier that is used to verify or authenticate the API calls. The Key can not only track the number of requests but also deny or approve the request based on the permissions by the client application.
Different types of APIs for marketers
Usually, web APIs are divided into four categories.
- Open: It is freely available and can be accessed by developers.
- Internal: It cannot be accessed by third parties and is available for internal teams or developers.
- Partner: It can be shared externally with developers who have authorized access or are in a business partnership.
- Composite: It can comprise multiple types of APIs.
Majority of the social media APIs fall in the open API category. Additionally, the architecture can also be used to categorize the type of APIs, including
- REST (Representational State Transfer): Used by the majority of web APIs, this represents a set of rules that are used for lightweight APIs.
- SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol): Used to build APIs, this set of protocols are for transferring data securely.
- RPC (Remote Procedural Call): These protocols are used to invoke processes and utilize JASON-RPC and XML-RPC in the calls.
How are APIs transforming marketing?
Digital marketers are using various types of APIs to boost their marketing campaigns. These may include geolocation or audience segmentation APIs, analytics APIs, SEO APIs, social media monitoring APIs, messenger APIs, and much more. Brands are now continuously communicating with their customers instead of advertising intermittently. In this overall process, APIs are helping brands get the right data to connect and solve their problems effectively. APIs, in fact, have been transforming marketing in a number of ways.
- Automation: Marketing automation tools, when used in conjunction with marketing APIs, can help businesses scale up, save time and resources, and effectively manage operations. For instance, tasks such as email marketing, posting on social media, or creating and managing marketing campaigns can be successfully handled using these automation tools.
- Integration: APIs enable interconnection between various platforms and applications, enabling seamless exchange of valuable data and managing repetitive marketing operations. For example, connecting your content management system (CMS) or customer relationship management (CRM) system with Airtable API, ZendeskSell API, and many more.
- Data collection or aggregation: This aspect is a critical part of customer and market research. It is a very common use case of marketing APIs and RESFTful APIs are particularly used for data queries.
- Social media marketing: Interestingly, a majority of social media platforms have APIs such as Twitter API, Facebook Marketing API, TikTok marketing API, LinkedIn Marketing API, and much more. These APIs, in general, can help marketers query demographic information, users, and posts. You can build on these APIs to improve the experience but not duplicate them.
However, third-party social media management platforms’ APIs enable marketers to streamline and monitor their social media campaigns from a single dashboard for multiple accounts, saving time and effort. With these APIs, you can check messages and respond to posts you are tagged in (social listening), do your quick searches, publish and schedule posts, get detailed reports and metrics, as well as gain competitor insights, all in one place!
This is what exactly Socilaity.io API does!
It helps marketers with automatic data aggregation and alignment, app creation on a unified platform, updates on the continually-evolving APIs of the platforms, and avoiding the long API approval process.
Know how you can automate your social media workflows seamlessly with Socilaity.io.
- Email marketing: Email marketing APIs find successful use in email campaigns as well as notifications and transactional messages. Businesses can share emails with customers about the products they might be interested in, recent transactions, abandoned carts, and much more. Moreover, depending on the stage of the customer journey, you can automate email content to initiate interactions.
🥁 Related article: Best social media & marketing newsletters to sign up
Top 5 types of APIs to streamline processes
There are different types of APIs for social media platforms. Here are some of the popular ones.
- Twitter API and Twitter Ads API: Twitter offers multiple API endpoints for various tasks and is based on HTTP. It consists of various objects, including tweets, users, places, spaces, direct messages, and much more. Twitter API allows you to write and read Twitter data, create tweets, access the information of your followers, read profiles, get high volumes of tweets on a particular topic from a specific location, etc. Twitter Ads API, on the other hand, helps you create and manage ad campaigns.
- Facebook Marketing API: HTTP-based, this API consists of a set of Graph API endpoints that help marketers create and manage ads on Facebook in real-time, query data, and manage other tasks, including creating audience segments and automatically creating different creative permutations to find which one works best, creating multiple ad templates for testing, building custom dashboards, and more.
- Instagram API: Instagram Graph API allows for managing published photos, videos, and other media (stories), accessing basic data of other businesses and creators, managing comments and replies, finding hashtagged media and mentions, measuring metrics, publishing stories and videos, and much more. For consumer usage, Instagram Basic Display API is recommended.
- YouTube Data API: This API allows you to add Youtube functionalities to your website or application. It also lets users play YouTube videos directly on the application, find content, manage playlists, upload videos, evaluate video performance, schedule live streaming, add subscribe buttons, and much more.
- TikTok Marketing API: This API allows business account users to manage advertisements on TikTok, including advertisement performance, creating and managing ad campaigns, ad optimization, and much more.
Single endpoint for all social media platforms
Socilaity.io API securely synchronizes all your data across different platforms. Equipped with social media conversations API, social media analytics API, social media competitor analysis API, social media publish API, and social media listen API, we help you make the most out of your data!
Sociality.io API allows your developers’ team to save time:
- Create apps directly on one unified portal.
- Automatic data aggregation and alignment.
- Avoid the long-drawn-out API approval process.
- Keep up with platforms’ fastly-changing API versions.
Marketing APIs are helping businesses improve their customer retention and outreach as well as streamlining marketing operations. APIs make it easier to collect data, automate repetitive marketing tasks, and allow data integration so that you don’t waste your time and effort reinventing the wheel!