Let’s face it! As a business, do you know who your customers are and where they hang on online? (Hint: Social media is no longer a valid answer). Social media is like transportation hubs with plenty of busy people seeking different destinations (or wasting time and keeping company).
From the late MySpace to the current list of competing young and aging social platforms (and the new kids on the block), your potential customers are deserting one platform to the other leaving your investment on marketing and advertising to the wind. There are no solid metrics and no easy way to measure your return on investment in social advertising. Budget allocation is driven by fear of competition and inability to comprehend and keep up with changing advertising dynamics among social media outlets, not to mention the pressure of the new industry that revolves around social media marketing like agencies, analytics firms and so on.
Attracted by the economy of scale and ease of use, social media has become a popular and easy target for scams and privacy threats. Your advertising budget may be burned in seconds on fake profiles, click farms or even bots pretending to click your links or fill your forms. Just look around and you will see fans, followers, likes and views being sold online as if it is another stock market. You are not only losing your money, but your website is sitting there collecting dust.
Granted that social media is not going to disappear anytime soon, there is no doubt it is losing efficiency to say the least. Your Facebook post is not reaching your fans (unless you pay or convince fans to interact). With hundreds of liked pages and accounts to follow (ex. Twitter), you can be sure your organic or paid presence does not capture much attention and may even be filtered out. And let’s admit it – social media is becoming less social and more commercial – after all, they now have investors and stakeholders to please with nice looking balance sheets.
So, should you just ignore your presence on social platforms? Not yet. However, you should optimize based on resources and target audience. Post a picture on Facebook, upload a video on YouTube or tweet your next activity, but don’t spend much there. The alternative? Your website (and blog) and traditional media coverage – unless and until a worthy innovation is out.
Your website is your official identity online. Keep it up to date and promote it. Make is SEO and user friendly for different screen sizes. Enrich it with relevant and new content. Attract visitors but do not pull their legs or push content down their throats. Be an attractive flower and be sure that bees and butterflies will discover you and enjoy the visit.