Is The Future of Marketing: Google OR Social Media?

If you have surfed the internet for any period of time you may have noticed sensationalized headlines like “Facebook is now the #1 destination on the Internet” or “Facebook Draws More Traffic Than Google”. Statements like this sound impressive but what (if anything) do they really mean? Does this change your marketing?  Should it?

I am a late 30 something professional (37 actually), I am originally from upstate New York, served in the military and am college educated.. I tell you this basic info so you can absorb this next statement: I joined Facebook only 3 years ago. It’s true, I have only been on Facebook for 3 years, while I consider myself an early adopter of many technologies, (all things Apple)  Facebook is not one of them. Don’t get me wrong, at the risk of sounding like a FB fan boy, I will tell you that I love Facebook.  I moved from Syracuse, New York to Las Vegas, Nevada to Phoenix, Arizona; Facebook has allowed me to keep in touch with my old friends and connect with new ones, it’s fantastic- I, you, we all appear to love facebook.

I have been using Google for as long as I can remember. I still remember the day I called my father at his software company and asked him if he could remember the name of a website, to which he said something I had not heard previously and haven’t forgotten since: “Just Google It!”. It was at that point that Google and I started this love affair. Every time I turn around Google has another product or service for me that I didn’t know I needed and then somehow couldn’t live without. When I have to solve a problem or get information I go to Google. I don’t go to Facebook. Even when I come up with a name of the product or service I was looking for, guess what I do then…..Yep, I Google It-again. I don’t Facebook It.

Search is the present and future of marketing. As outbound tools become less effective and most likely more expensive, search will continue to grow. Seems like EVERYONE wants to get in the search game. What was once commanded my Google, Yahoo and Bing now has smaller players like Facebook, Twitter, Gowalla, Yelp.  While it’s fun to read headlines about Facebook vs Google, let me ask you this one simple question:

When you search for something- product, service, person, company, word, meaning, definition, location, funny joke, famous quote, when you search for ANYTHING-do you do so primarily on a search engine like Google or a social media platform like Facebook?

There are people/companies in cyberspace, maybe even sitting in the cubicle next to you that would have you believe social media is not only the answer to all of your business woes but that it should be the center of your marketing efforts. This, frankly, leaves me scratching my head.  As I mentioned before, I love facebook, but making it the center of my marketing efforts, my HUB if you will sounds completely foreign to me.

Social media is imperative in my, your, OUR marketing efforts, simply put, it is where the people are-in masses.  At PRO-found, we advocate driving traffic (customers) from search engines like Google, and social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, through your website-HUB or storefront.

Social Media tools like Facebook are imperative to business success, but making it the center of your marketing universe is a mistake.  It appears I am not alone.  A recent study by Junta42 and MarketingProfs actually measured the use and effectiveness of marketing channels like Social Media.  They asked 1000 marketing professionals which marketing tactics they use today.

From the graph below, it shows that most marketing professionals (79%) use social media as a marketing tactic

A recent study by Junta42 and MarketingProfs

What’s interesting is, while the majority of marketers are using social media more than any other tactic, at 31%,  it appears to be the method marketers believe to be the least effective.

Effectiveness Ratings By Marketing Tactic. Junta42 and MarketingProfs

We believe these findings only highlight our belief that an effective marketing plan should include social media tools like facebook, twitter and YouTube but should not be the sole basis of it.  While an important component of your marketing plan, successful marketing strategies will include a strong website, unique content, search engine marketing, search engine optimization, back linking strategies, landing pages and good old fashioned elbow grease-WORK.

If you or anyone you know (wink-wink) has bought into the belief that social media is the answer to your business prayers, we can help. We will employ time tested and proven strategies to get you “found” online-where you customers are.  Let’s talk.

Round 1=GOOGLE.  Am I Wrong?

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