Is social media dead? Truth is in cold, hard data.

I often hear business leaders and marketers alike complain that social media isn’t working. What kills me even more is when “social media” experts tell me that Facebook is dead. Both of these assumptions are flawed and I will share with you what I find works and what doesn’t.

Investing time for success in social media marketing.

Usually, when I hear business leaders tell me that social media isn’t working for them I inquire about their commitment to social media. I ask if their organizations have dedicated people whose job is to promote the business through social networks and if they have a clearly defined strategy for their social media program. The answer is usually no, and no. You don’t need to be a genius to figure out that without staff, and direction, you will not get far.

Opinions aside – evidence is in the data.

The second comment really gets me going as it is coming from so-called experts. When I ask those experts why they think that Facebook is dead, the answer is along the lines of:

I haven’t been on Facebook for ages.

Unlike the “experts,” a large portion of the world is still using Facebook daily and that shouldn’t be ignored.

Let your marketing metrics be your guide.

I like to measure the effectiveness of marketing efforts instead of making assumptions modeled on my own behaviors. Below is the data that shows three different B2C businesses’ Google Analytics Data.

TRAFFIC SOURCES

Here is a screenshot of three of our clients’ websites that clearly shows that social is the highest traffic source in two of the three businesses.

3-Acquisition-Overview-Google-Analytics-2

Social networks data clearly shows that Facebook is the leading social network for all the businesses by far.

There you have it. For the three businesses outlined, social media is working – and the main channel is Facebook. This is only made possible through the management commitment to invest in social media and by hard work of the marketing staff at each of those businesses.

It is foolish to expect that anything is free or that it works on its own, social media isn’t an exemption.

If you want Facebook to work for your business, you will have to make it work.

Need help? We believe in marketing metrics to measure your return on investment.

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  1. Brad 25/02/2016, 6:30:26 PM

    There’s always two sides of the stats to look at – or rather – you should dig a little deeper into the analytic data to see what it actually tells you. For me, I’ve put significant effort into social because I know social media. I can say that 53% of the traffic to my site is through social media but how many are converting to actual clients/sales? Not as many as we would expect to and that’s where a business owner can justifiably say that social isn’t working in many cases.

    It works well enough for brand awareness, it could even work for customer service if you are active and engaged but one drawback is that it works really well for people in other markets to grab, like and pin your great ideas. That other market traffic may not be buying and it certainly throws off website stats, traffic and, in the end, conversion numbers. Social is great and cheap, I have driven significant new traffic to the website with effort on Pinterest to a point where 70% of social traffic to the site is from that source but then the bounce rate spiked to 74% as well – which is bad. Higher traffic with a higher bounce rate means that there’s been no increase in clients or sales.

    To drive meaningful traffic you must go where your clients are. It would be unrealistic to suggest that everyone needs to be on facebook or the next social platform unless the ROI is actually there. If it’s a better choice to spend the budget, be it time or actual money, on another form of marketing where ROI is better then that’s the suggestion you must make. At least with something like radio or google adwords, etc – you can actually target a specific demographic.

    The correct approach has always been and always will be the correct mix of SEO, SEM, traditional ads, and the right social engagement to round things out and drive traffic where the ROI and conversions will be high. Is social media dead? NO. But is it alive?

    • Zlatan 25/02/2016, 6:30:50 PM

      Thanks a lot for such an insightful reply Brad.

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