Social Media: Don't Put the Cart Before the Horse

I think we can all agree that we're well past the point of anyone thinking that social media "may just be a fad." While the web's most popular social media destinations and tools may be completely different in five years, this form of communication will continue to shape the way the Internet works.

On the other hand, just because social media is here to stay doesn't mean it's the end all, be all of online marketing. From one-man shops to huge corporations, there are a lot of businesses that are putting all their eggs in the social media basket. If you're feeling pressured to jump on this bandwagon, find out why there's a fine line between social media marketing savviness and foolishness:

The Issue

More businesses are choosing to put their entire presence on Facebook and/or Twitter instead of having their own website. Keep in mind that this isn't just limited to sole proprietors. Many large brands who spend millions of dollars on TV ads are sending potential customers directly to a social media site. The problem is that regardless of how much you put in to your social presences, you'll never have full control over the experiences they deliver.

Is It Really That Big of a Deal?

Well, there are several significant issues that can arise from this approach. First off is the worst case scenario. Even if a business thinks they're playing by the rules, Facebook and Twitter always have the right to torch accounts that they feel aren't in compliance with their policies. Let's say your business only has a Facebook account. Even if it's a glitch, that account ends up getting deleted. When this happens, potential customers can't find out anything about your business, including any form of contact information!

Other problems include limited SERP visibility, not having enough information and being unable to maximize the number of visitors you convert into leads or actual customers.

Keep Things in Perspective

Given how easy it is for any business to have their own website and blog, there's simply no reason not to do so. Having a dedicated online property for your business will not only protect your presence, but it will also give you the freedom to market your business in any way that you want.

Additionally, you'll find that your social media marketing efforts are actually more productive when you have your own site and blog. For example, instead of sending your Twitter followers to a note that you wrote on Facebook, only to frustrate those who aren't signed in, everyone will be able to access a post on your own blog that you promote. And not only will they be able to enjoy reading it, but it will be dead simple for them to share it with others.

About The Author

Brian Waraksa

Brian Waraksa, founder of Raxa Design in Houston, Texas has been in marketing and small business branding since 2002. He writes the Raxa Design blog on issues affecting small business marketing and corporate brands.

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