We are at the end of Phoenix Marketing Week and this is the last post of the week. The following is written by Anna Brice, founder and principal of Pinnacle Peak Marketing and VP of Membership at the AMA Phoenix.
In the early days of social media, it was not quite determined (yet) if this was a viable channel for marketing. B2B marketers absolutely didn’t think this would be a channel for them, at first. It was fun, for sure. It was a great way to communicate information you, as a company wanted to communicate to the world. And it was free, right? But can social media do the things that make the effort and investment of resources and budget worth it?
Let’s tackle the question – Why?
Should our business be in the social media game? The answer is likely yes because 30% of millennials today say they engage with a brand on social at least once a month. Gone are the days that you set up your social media accounts, do a little with them and then forget them. “We are there. That should be enough”. No, that won’t work anymore. Engagement is what you want to see and give the audience a reason to, then, click over to your website.
Because you are a business, should you automatically 100% be on social media?
Not necessarily. The importance of social media absolutely is dependent on your industry. How you use it is also heavily dependent on the industry your business resides. And which social media channels you use are also dependent on your industry. It’s likely that it makes sense to be on social media for your business for multiple reasons but the question is then, which social platform makes the most sense for your and how much time and resources should be dedicated to this channel?
Social media is a channel that allows you to work on many marketing goals you are trying to accomplish.
- Brand awareness
- Real-time listening (so you can improve your messaging to the audience)
- Create customer loyalty
- Drive in-person sales
- Gain a larger audience via “digital word-of-mouth”
Social media, although technically “free”, is not truly free. There are ads, which are beneficial, but they come at a cost. There is a significant time requirement from a human resource, whether an internal employee or an outside resource. Joining each platform is free, but what you do with them and the effort you put forth do, in fact, come at a cost.
How is social media related to search?
Social media often feeds into the discovery of new content. This includes news stories, industry articles and events, new products and even leadership topics. Discovering new content is a search activity. Social media can also support SEO efforts by helping to build links. Think about how you do searches today when you are researching a product you want to purchase or a company’s services you want to hire. So often, people search social media sites to find the content which will help their decision-making process. Social connections may also impact the relevancy of some search results, either within a social media network or in a search engine itself.
Check out this blog post, submitted by Jen Spencer, VP of Sales and Marketing at SmartBug Media. Her colleague, Amber Kemmis writes on the subject direct and organic traffic sources to your website, and social media is an important part of that discussion.
For a long time, digital marketers summed up the properties of direct and organic traffic pretty similarly and simply. To most, organic traffic consists of visits from search engines, while direct traffic is made up of visits from people entering your company URL into their browser. This explanation, however, is too simplified and leaves most digital marketers short-handed when it comes to completely understanding and gaining insights from web traffic, especially organic and direct sources.
Beyond organic and direct traffic, you must understand the difference between all of your traffic sources and how traffic is classified. Most web analytics platforms, like Google Analytics, utilize an algorithm and flow chart based on the referring website or parameters set within the URL that determine the source of traffic.
Amber breaks down of all sources in this informative blog post. Check it out here.
Jen Spencer will be speaking at an October AMA Phoenix event on the topic of Inbound and Channel Marketing. Keep an eye on the AMA Phoenix website for more information.