If Facebook, Twitter gain on Google for referrals, will marketing dollars follow? [Poll]
Ironically, I came across this Advertising Age piece via a link posted on Facebook and this Mashable piece on Twitter.Armed with data from Hitwise, a Web analysis firm, Advertising Age noted that Facebook is starting to generate more traffic than Google search for some larger Web sites - a shift that could impact the distribution of marketing dollars and campaigns as the "social Web" continues to disrupt more traditional Web surfing habits.
Armed with data from Hitwise, a Web analysis firm, Advertising Age noted that Facebook is starting to generate more traffic than Google search for some larger Web sites - a shift that could impact the distribution of marketing dollars and campaigns as the "social Web" continues to disrupt more traditional Web surfing habits. For now, the biggest impact seems to be among social sites, such as celebrity gossip or mom sites - a reflection of the sharing among friends that goes on in social networks.
But companies large and small - and the marketing/advertising/PR firms that represent them - should take note. It's no longer enough to just have a Web site and expect that potential customers will find you. The companies that participate in social media and understand how it's changed the way people communicate, interact and share information with each other are the companies that will form long-lasting relationships with customers. AdAge writes:
It all points to the growing power of content sharing; the question is how to harness that and what it means for the future of "search" marketing. Companies spent $12.2 billion in 2008 on search optimization and marketing to get traffic from Google, according to eMarketer.
If some of that traffic is now coming from Twitter or Facebook, how does that impact a company's marketing budget, its outreach campaign and other resources? How does social media change - or preserve - the perception of the company, its products, its services, it customer service?
The Mashable piece offers some insight into the do's and don'ts of creating a "brand voice" on Twitter. That post is especially insightful because it speaks to companies that are looking at Twitter as a marketing tool. The tips include:
Don't just use Twitter as an RSS feed
Don't just talk about products and services
Do have a voice on Twitter, but first have a listen
AdAge says it was inevitable that Facebook - given that is 180 million-plus registered users - would eventually become a major referring site. "Web users go to Google to figure out where to go next; they go to Facebook to, well, hang out."
Now, to the poll and my experiment. I want to know if you stumbled upon this post while hanging out on Facebook or skimming through Tweets or if you came in via Google, ZDNet, or some other blog? As soon as I publish this blog post, I'll blast a link out on Twitter and share it with my own network of Facebook friends - just as I do with many of my posts - and possibly get an idea of whather it's making any difference. Take a moment to select an answer below, teling me how you found this blog post. It will be interesting to see if my Facebook and Twitter efforts are paying off.