Social media does not replace a marketing plan

My last blog post was on 5 website mistakes made by small business. Over the past week I’ve been thinking about another one that needs attention: the assumption by some small business people that a strong social media presence (especially Facebook and Twitter) somehow replaces the need to pay attention to their websites and by extension their marketing plan.

Small business owners have heard all about the huge volume of daily Facebook users and rightly want their share of attention. They don’t seem to have a problem putting money into their Facebook presence via social media management companies but baulk at the effort and cost required to keep their websites up to date with remarkable content.

My SEO mentor, Jill Whalen (@jillwhalen) has a great article in her newsletter this week on this subject (Social Media Marketing Confusion Here’s a particularly noteworthy paragraph:

You probably heard that you should be tweeting out your content without understanding what that means, or what type of content is even tweet-worthy. Twitter, and to a certain extent Facebook, will be helpful to you and your business only if you have specific content to promote on your site. That is, content that goes beyond just describing your products and services. Content that is interesting, quirky, funny or passionate. Content that teaches, makes people think or riles them up. In short, content that tells a story that’s in some way related to the products or services you offer.

Social media is a great adjunct to your overall marketing plan but it is not a replacement. Again as Jill says…

Social media marketing means having something worth promoting that goes beyond your products and services. It means being creative, thinking about what would interest your target audience, and then taking the time and manpower to start doing it!

Before you sign up to have someone manage your social media accounts because you don’t have the time – think how it fits into your total marketing strategy. Don’t let it become your total marketing strategy! Confused by the distinction? Talk to me!

Posted by
John Tully

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