Social Marketing – What Google Has Done to The Value of a Fan

Posted On: Apr. 7, 2011  |  Author: synnd

SEO Takes a Back Seat to Social Marketing

Marketers and business owners have been struggling with social marketing since…. the dawn of social media (we say it like it’s as old as the wreckage of thesocial marketing Titanic) to estimate the value of a fan on sites like Facebook – or followers on Twitter.  They’ve long sought to put a price tag on the fan but ultimately it’s been impossible because of so many factors are involved; especially the fact that every business is different and not all fans are created equal.

Social Marketing – Science Says Fans are Worth…

Firms like Millward Brown’s Brandz even compiled data to see if those people in social media that have become “active fans” of a brand spend more money than those who are not “fans” but perhaps just active users.  Not surprisingly those who are fans of their favored brand tend to spend as much as 5 times more than non-fans.  But is that any real surprise?

One would expect that if a company is spending any amount of time and strategic effort in outreach and social media marketing that there would be some kind of return.  If this were any other type of marketing it would still cycle back to the concept that the more “fans” or engaged customers you have the more profit you stand to make.

So we’ve easily established that fans equal profit, and more fans equal more profit potential, but Google has added some additional value to each individual user/fan/customer you can land through social media marketing.

Social Media Marketing – Google Says Fans are Worth…

A lot more than money.  Thanks to the most recent update there’s a lot of ranking emphasis placed on “social proof”; that is – the overall sharing and engagement among people who like your stuff.  Whether that’s a press release, a blog post, some content pages or big thumbs up on for your social marketing.

Taking it another step, Google is tinkering with the new Google +1 system that will allow users to -publicly- vote content pages up and down in the SERPs.  While there’s some mumbles and mutters in the industry (marketing, search optimization, etc.) about the potential for gaming this system it’s still proof that Google – and other search engines – are shifting their focus to social proof as a ranking factor.

This focus on editorial ‘likes’, sharing and content review makes a fan even more valuable to businesses.  It’s no longer about the dollar value but the social value.  Each person has the ability to personally affect the position and visibility of a website online.

The Anatomy of the Fanpage and Social Marketing

While I won’t necessarily dissect the fan page, there are 5 factors that can add extreme value to social marketing:  Regular content, trustworthy brand news, new product information, contests and special offers.  For a business, these are driving factors in keeping fans engages while attracting new ones.  To ensure that they stay engaged, the content – in spot 1 of the 5 factors – needs to be entertaining, informative and relevant.    Hit on these marks with your social marketing and you’ll be able to leverage the growing value of your own Social Marketing fans to improve visibility online as well as reinforce your bottom line.

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