Top myths about social media for business #2: “Don’t need it—we have SEO”

Aug 2011

Welcome to our new series “Busted! Top 10 Myths About Social Media for Business,” where we debunk many of the myths out there surrounding social media as an effective business tool. Inspired by many objections I’ve heard (and overheard) from real business owners, I developed this series to help you separate the fact from the fiction in this still-uncharted territory. Stay tuned for more mythbusting every Monday and Wednesday ’til the list runs out!

seoIn our last post, we debunked Myth #3 about social media for business—”It only works for ‘sexy’ products”—by looking at some decidedly un-sexy products that nevertheless have become huge successes on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and other social sites. Now let’s take a look at whether a successful SEO (search engine optimization) strategy precludes the need for a strong social media presence.

The interesting thing about this myth is that in many ways, social media is in the same spot today, in terms of acceptance as a valid marketing practice, that SEO was in just a few years ago. Back around 2005 or so, businesses of all sizes and in all industries were writing SEO off as a waste of time and resources because [fill in the myth]. But fast-forward a few years and no business with a website can imagine life without it.

Now we’re seeing a lot of eye-rolls among companies whose SEO runs like a well-oiled machine when it comes to social media. “Social media’s just another way to get found on the Web,” they protest, “but we’re already being found thanks to our shiny, pimped-out SEO strategy. So thanks, but no thanks.”

DebunkDEBUNKED! Not only have Google* and other major search engines publicly admitted that social media posts impact search results, but social media delivers additional advantages that SEO can’t even come close to offering.

Of course, the precise list of ingredients in the algorithmic “secret sauce” of Google, Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines is and always will be top secret. However, in December 2010, Google guru Matt Cutts admitted publicly (on YouTube, natch) that the search giant does use Twitter and Facebook links as “ranking signals.” Which means that each time your content is linked to from a social site, your SEO gets a little boost, even if the Twitter and Facebook posts themselves don’t show up in the search results.

Indeed, social and search have become so closely intertwined that they’ve spawned a new term, “social search,” which now occupies its own page on Wikipedia:

Social search or a social search engine is a type of web search that takes into account the Social Graph of the person initiating the search query. When applied to web search this Social-Graph approach to relevance is in contrast to established algorithmic or machine-based approaches where relevance is determined by analyzing the text of each document or the link structure of the documents.

And then there’s the unique lineup of perks that only a strong social media presence can offer, which includes:

  • Credibility: As they say in BNI, visibility plus credibility equals profitability. Both SEO and social media can help with visibility, getting you “out there,” but only social media helps increase credibility, by offering a podium from which you can share your expertise and demonstrate your commitment to your customers.
  • Communication: Websites are mostly static—great sources of evergreen information, but if I want to know if my favorite barbecue joint is open on Labor Day or not, they’re usually not much help. What social media does is provide a real-time means of communication that’s also low-maintenance; a blog post on your holiday hours takes 5 minutes, while publishing the same information on your website, especially if you haven’t done it in a while, can take considerably longer (not including the time needed to remove it after the fact).
  • Connection: Social media is a two-way street where you can interact with your customers on a regular basis, get their feedback, thank them for their support, and offer them rewards—capabilities that SEO just can’t deliver.

So, have we convinced you that your site does not live by SEO alone? Why, or why not? Tell us about it in the comments; we’d love to hear from you!

* Oh, and speaking of Google, have you heard that they’re now in the social-network business themselves?

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  • Increased our likes and interaction rates

    Working with Rachel was a delight. Not only does she communicate very well, but she provided valuable insight about our social media platforms and followers. We have much better engagement with our fans and followers, which increased our likes and interaction rates.


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    Rachel was hired to write content for our email newsletter and content for our social platforms. In addition, she had a budget to do advertising on social media. She participated in the event live and after the fact to assure buzz was created before, during and after the event. As a result, our event sold out.

    When I work with Rachel, I have total peace of mind.  I know that she is on target, on time, reliable and delivers over and above the results I expect.

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    I just didn’t seem to be able to find the time or the right words to explain what I offer and how my company helps people accomplish their goals. Rachel was able to ask me some questions, do some research and capture my voice while writing my website copy exactly as I needed it to be written.  Now, the copy on my website is much more professional than what I would have created and having this task handled by Rachel and Resonance freed up my time to complete other tasks I am better suited to do.

    It was a joy to work with Rachel. Her professionalism and sincere desire to help was apparent from the first communication until the final delivery. I will definitely use Resonance again and highly recommend their services.

  • Social Media Ranking Better Than Ever!

    We are so happy to have hired Resonance for our social media needs. We spend most of our time serving our clients and studying our field so we can provide the highest quality possible. We no longer worry about our social media, as we have total confidence in the wonderful work Rachel and her team have accomplished.

    Our social media is active, promoted, and is ranking better than ever! People often comment about what they see on our Facebook page. Resonance has added a creative, and artistic twist to our social media that is appealing and captivating to our audience. This has allowed me more time to work with my team and clients, so I can focus on service towards the people that help our business grow.

    I know there will be wonderful content on Facebook, and that Rachel will answer to posts, comments and questions as soon as a comment arrives. I am often impressed at how quickly she responds! Thank you Resonance! I highly endorse Resonance and encourage companies who need social media strategies to work with Resonance! You won’t regret it! 

  • One of the best “vendor” relationships I’ve ever had.

    My company had little or no time to spend on social media. Our needs were to ensure a steady stream of posts across three platforms (Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter) by harvesting and re-purposing content from our own site and news streams. So I contacted Rachel Parker of Resonance Content Marketing.

    The result was two-fold. Not only did our ranks of followers grew steadily, the steady drip, drip, drip of content helped us train our personnel and direct their own individual social media efforts.

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  • Produced ROI Result needed someone who could grasp the complexities of our product, capture the subtlety of our differentiating value propositions, and convey them in the right voice for an exacting customer audience…. Resonance delivered, by crafting a multi-faceted online content marketing strategy that drove traffic and conversion, producing the ROI result we were looking for….

  • Added 5 figures to my business in less than 4 weeks

    Rachel took the overwhelm and stress out of writing content for my marketing campaign! When I approached Rachel, I was really concerned that I wouldn’t have the time to focus on writing copy for a lengthy marketing campaign that included sales pages, solo emails, newsletters and social media updates. Well, let’s just say I’m glad I hired Rachel because I couldn’t have done it without her support and expertise. I loved how she used my voice and words to craft content that helped me reach and attract my ideal client. As a result of working with Rachel, I added 5 figures to my business in less than 4 weeks, hundreds of new social media followers and exceeded my sales and list building goals! You know your marketing copy is working when you hear someone say, “I see you everywhere”. Thank you Rachel for helping me not only get seen by my ideal clients but get paid!

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