Build up your relationship and network and see your business will grow! Social networks are emerging as a strong contender for getting fast, free web traffic. Previously held, indisputably, by SEO and SEM campaigns, social networking sites are fast giving SEO and SEM companies a run of their money. Used correctly, social networking sites can act as a link magnet for targeted traffic and achieve higher and faster traffic growth.
Previously, the best, and perhaps only, method to garner high click rates is to be listed high up in the organic search engine listings. Currently, this road block, established by SEO/SEM companies, is no longer so prominent. Through web analytics, many website owners are finding out that the social networking aspect is also ramping up the traffic and bringing visitors faster and, importantly, more targeted than those from organic search engine listings.
This major market shift in Internet marketing from search engine placement to social networking can be accredited to several factors. SEO is not easy to understand. Neither is it reliable and constant. You could spend tens of thousands to get to the #1 page of Google and the next day, you are gone. Buried and dead! Even so, different search engines have different ranking algorithms. What is good for Google may not work for Yahoo! and many ponders how to optimize the same page content for the top 3 search engines. And of course, you have to factor in the fact that no one knows exactly how these search engines work and they could change their ranking algorithms anytime.
With social networking, it is not about placement anymore. It is about who you know and who follows and connects with you. For example, your followers could break up your latest article, comment on it, add on their thoughts, perform other unimaginable things and send this to the network to be read a million times a day. This is almost like a road block. No person on the network can get away with this because the moment they logs in online, they get the news via social networking tools like Twitter, stumbleupon, Digg, etc. And because of the nature of social networking, they have the impetus to add on to the article, send it to their cycle of friends and the viral effect explodes again. This not only leads to an economical and effective means of mass marketing, it is also highly targeted as you choose the audience; unlike SEO where audiences choose you!
However, social networking is not flawless. The very aspect that gets you to the top could also be the reason for your downfall. The way you engage your market is critical. Remember, you are building credibility and gaining trust. All these cannot be achieve within days or even weeks. Open communication, professionalism, timely and constant engagement all kicks into play. If you have a hidden agenda right from day #1, often, your patience will run thin and you will up spamming your followers or providing inappropriate advices. This could lead to ZERO result after months of relationship building. Also, these social networkers are highly intelligent; If you offend them, you might end up doing the paying and clean up.
So, that said, will social networking prevails and becomes the primary means of Internet marketing?