The New Role Social Media Marketing Plays For The Affiliate Marketing Industry
Like it or not social media marketing is moving towards center stage and if you're not including it in your marketing strategy, you're going to find yourself standing in the wings. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube – you name it, the social networks are becoming 'THE' place to go when you're looking for an audience. And seriously, would not you rather be playing to a packed house?
OK, enough of the metaphors. Let's talk about what's really going on with social media marketing these days. If you have not seen the numbers, something like 375 million people gather on Facebook every day. I have not seen recent Twitter numbers but just watching my own Tweet stream tells me Twitter is not going anywhere anytime soon.
In the past, searchers came to the Internet looking for information and they were happy to land on a relevant site. Ecstatic, actually. These days, they prefer to gather socially and 'share' information – rather than searching through the wreck on the Web. It makes sense. People prefer hearing about products from people they 'know' they can trust. You know the old saying about word-of-mouth advertising, right?
So, instead of everyone landing on diverse websites they're now all congregating – en masse – in places like Facebook, and Twitter and …. well, you know the rest. It's like shooting ducks in a barrel – you know where they are, they're all in one big bundle – what are you doing to get your share of the business?
It's no longer enough to set up a bogus profile and automate your Tweets or Likes and wait for the Followers to show up. That's old hat as far as marketing methods go. It did not work then and it certainly will not work now. People expect more these days. They're perfectly happy to form a relationship with you but you have to give them a reason to connect.
Do you have a Facebook fan page – not just an account? And if you do, what's on your fan page? Is it just a bunch of links? Or are you actually connecting with your audience? Are you giving them entertaining videos and fascinating articles? What about a YouTube channel? Are you participating in any group activities on LinkedIn? Are you doing anything fascinating that will make people curious to learn more about you and your company?
In the past, even successful webmasters laughed at using social media marketing techniques but you can not deny the numbers any more. If that's where the audience is, then that's where you need to go.
Start by picking just one social network, the one most relevant to your business, and concentrate at creating an off-site community of friends and followers, people who'd never see your site if they did not hear about it in a social network . You'll find programs all over the Internet that can show you how to create a custom fan page or Twitter background or YouTube channel design. But trust me, you can no longer ignore the benefits of using social media marketing techniques. The social networks are the new Internet marketplace.