We all know that social media has made huge leaps and bounds as far as becoming an important factor in any company’s overall marketing strategy. There was a time when social sites were just for…well…socializing…between friends! Imagine that! Now, social media has become an important cornerstone included in most companies’ marketing plan. Here’s where the problem lies: With tons of “experts” telling you social media marketing is the “key” for your business (not to mention promoting their own services of course), companies can get confused and led astray. They begin to put too much emphasis on social media marketing, and they put less effort into other pieces of the marketing strategy that are just as important, if not more important.
You Need Control
For example, we’ve heard from numerous companies that they didn’t have a website because they don’t need one. Why didn’t they “need” one, you ask? Well, because they have a Facebook and/or Twitter page. To which our answer was, “Really?” There is simply no comparison to owning your own website. When we say “own”, we mean “own”. If you’re relying on a company to throw up a cheap $500 template (which really looks like it’s a $25 template), and you don’t even own your own URL, let alone have access to the site, you’re really doing yourself a disservice. While Facebook pages do give you more flexibility, you are still relying on a social platform to get your business’ information online and seen.
You Need Longevity
Prepared to get scared? Social giants like Facebook and Google+ have a lot to offer your business, don’t get us wrong! However, you should emphasize a certain portion of your marketing efforts on social media and place more emphasis on items you can control. You can only control social media marketing so much, and you certainly can’t control the platform it’s on. Remember when MySpace was at the height of its popularity? Imagine if you had built your company’s website and entire marketing strategy on MySpace. Then Facebook grows in popularity, and MySpace is a thing of the past. You’ve literally wasted all your marketing efforts on a platform that barely anyone uses anymore. Do you think you can transfer those efforts over to Facebook? Nope! Now you’re back to square one. At the moment, no one knows if Facebook is going to be trumped by another giant. Maybe it’s Google+ and maybe it’s not. Maybe Facebook will prosper longer than social media marketing ever will. The point is, it is uncertain and uncontrollable.
You Need SEO
As an Atlanta SEO company, we have to advise that search engine optimization is by far your best bang for your buck when it comes to ROI for your business and its marketing plan. Of course, we’re speaking about search engine optimization strategies on your own website. While you can control some SEO factors on template sites and social sites, the amount of control and options you have on these platforms pales in comparison when you’re talking about your own website. With your own website you can control items like the title tag, meta description, meta keywords, keyword density within your content, linking strategies, and more.
So what’s it all boil down to? Simply this: social media marketing has its merit and its place within your overall marketing strategy, but you should never place all your eggs in one basket…let alone a basket you don’t control. Instead, focus on items you can control. Focus on search engine optimization on your own website.
Let me add a NOTE to this post on November 28th 2011: Everything mentioned above is still 100% true for the most part but we are now finding that a combination of On-site SEO strategies combined with what is called SOCIAL SEO is producing record numbers of new visitors to our newest clients websites. Of course back links and all the traditional onsite and offsite SEO strategies are being deployed but when blended with a new Social SEO Services formula…well the results are on fire! The new Google+ business pages, new Facebook custom websites and new social interaction strategies are changing the digital marketing world yet again.
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