Having a huge network of friends on Facebook or tons of followers on Twitter is just a fraction of the power behind social marketing. Yet the full leveraging of power is often misunderstood. Automatic tweets and links on the Facebook wall end up buried in a stream of constant information. There is certainly a few clicks, but it is hardly an impact. Understanding why people use specific social networks is important.
Twitter is a fine place to post links and even make quick comments towards a follower. In fact, Twitter is often the new way to make a press release and even has replaced RSS feeds for many.
But Facebook is different. It is a lot of f.eks vacation photos, random updates, and sometimes serious thoughts. For every friend made, there is a News Feed of fun, emotional concerns, and life related incidents to compete with. Just posting links on a profile hardly matters in the scheme of things. In fact, this often leads to being completely focused on using the social network and abandons the real goal, getting people to the website and interacting with the content.
Real world connections matter. Social networks provide great tools for getting people to complete the deal. For instance, on Facebook it is possible to build a Friends List to specifically target information to relevant connections. When providing new content on a website, use the Friend List to send out the information. Messages do not get lost in the constant stream.
Targeting an audience is the marketing. Search Engine Optimization comes from those who follow the link. If the information is relative to their interests, people stick around, even repost, Retweet, or do any number of things to help create more relevant traffic.
This is why so many articles online have conveniently placed ways to Retweet, Like, and any other number of social connection buttons on a post. It is usually a simple click for the reader to create a link to all the rest of the people in their network. This is link building going far beyond the power of one person's own ability.
The importance of social marketing is not the social network. It is the power to target a relevant audience. Understanding this single fact makes it far easier to put together a strategy centered bringing people to a website rather than substituting it with a social network. After all the web itself is the biggest social network out there. Having high quality traffic, the kind that does not bounce, the kind that reads more than one page, can only strengthen search resul.