Social Media Marketing
“Social media marketing is a must!” This is what we hear all the time in our industry. Far too much in our opinion. It’s not that we don’t think social media marketing is not a viable marketing strategy, it is. However, we believe it’s a marketing strategy that is best handled in house and not by an agency. This is our opinion and people can feel free to disagree with us nevertheless I wanted to write this article to share my opinion as to why we don’t think social media marketing is a must.
Does Social Make Sense For B2B?
When talking with both prospective and existing clients they struggle with how to make social media marketing work for them. When they are looking for help with their overall digital marketing strategy most companies out there are pushing hard for them to invest in social media but deep down they can’t seem to make the marketing connection between their business and their customers. Yet, here are these marketing people pushing them and trying to convince them that if they aren’t social they’re missing out and if gaining followers is the holy grail of the online marketing world.
So they end up paying hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars a month to promote themselves on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest while their social media marketing firms show them how “engaged” and how much “reach” they achieved with their posts, meanwhile it seems as though they aren’t really generating any more leads.
Now, I’m not saying that this strategy doesn’t work but the reality is most small and mid sized companies have limited budgets for marketing and limited time to allocate to these activities. If “engaged” and “reach” isn’t generating new business then it’s not a good strategy if you have limited resources.
Consider the accompanying graphic. 35% of consumers in Canada turn to a search engine to help them make the right purchase whereas only 3% depend on social media. So many companies concerned with an online marketing focus primarily on social but neglect the importance of website and web presence.
Are The Metrics Trustworthy?
Here is one big issue we have with social media marketing, especially on Facebook. The campaign metrics, which we as marketing people depend on, are constantly being changed due to errors in how they are calculated. In the past year, Facebook has had to apologize to marketers for no less than 10 major errors that have often inflated metrics to make them look much larger than they really were, often to the detriment of the paid advertiser and in favor of Facebook.
We happen to agree with Professor Scott Galloway at L2 Inc, that when mistakes are constantly in your favor they aren’t mistakes, they are lies.
The Carousel Of Mistakes
People Ask Google
So, if you’re a business with a limited budget and resources you typically need to go to the bottom of the potential sales funnel. That is the people who are most likely in need of your product or service now. Search engines, such as Google, are where people go to find what they need right now and will ask Google those buying questions such as:
Where can I buy camping equipment in Calgary? or How much do cleaning services cost in Calgary? or Locksmiths near me.
By going after these key words you have a better chance of getting sales and bookings than you would by promoting a post on Facebook simply because you’re getting in front of that person in their exact time of need.
Social Media Marketing – Why We Don’t Do It
Again, we’re not saying that social media marketing doesn’t have its place because it does. Social media is good for promoting brand awareness and filling the top of the sales funnel with interest, however for small businesses that need to generate leads and sales now, the path to conversion is not as immediate as it is by targeting search.
Second, social media is a great tool for having conversations with customers that want to talk with someone about your brand or seek assistance or support directly from the company. In this case, we feel that the best spokespeople for your brand are your own people, not a marketing agency.
Finally, we think that a good social media strategy can compliment a good digital marketing strategy, however, with limited resources and budget we believe companies can get a much higher return on their ad spend by investing in search as opposed to social media.
In fact, the best social media platform to get the best bang for your social media marketing budget might be YouTube.