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  • Social Media - Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Linkedin, Blogs - can drive more immediate traffic to your web site
  • Social Media must be a part of your Internet marketing strategy
  • Social Media is rapidly becoming as important as search engine optimization

It seems remarkable that something so new can so quicklly impact marketing and public relations the way Social Media has. Viral marketing has been growing in significance for over a decade. Twitter launched in March 2006 towday has 190 million users and has 200 million unique visitors a month, with 50 million tweets a day in February 2010. Facebook has 500 million friends and 50% of the active users log on to Facebook in any given day. There are 2 billion video views a day on YouTube and 1.2 million blogs listed in the Technorati directory (according to some 2009 reports they are indexing 133 million), while Linkedin has 75 million members. Since numbers are growing daily, we will have to update this page frequently.

So, you may ask, how is this important in getting traffic to my web site? People trust recommendations from people they know and respect, so a referral from someone they know is likely to have them click on a link to see. More than four in five US online adults now participate socially according to 2009 report by Forrester Reasearch, Inc.

There are hundreds of millions of users across the 190 social networks listed on Wikipedia. There are hundreds more social media networks not listed on Wikipedia. Specifically, 55.6 million adults - or just less than 1/3rd of the population - in the US now visit social networks at least monthly, according to a 2009 report from Forrester Research. That's up from just 15 percent of adults in 2007, and around 18 percent last year. This has driven firms into developing social media marketing strategies.

Augie Rae of Forrester Research asserts that "A Balanced Marketing Scorecard Thoroughly Validates Social Media Value." Further, "to properly value the impact of social media marketing investments, interactive marketers must align their objectives, metrics, targets, and strategies across four perspectives - financial, digital, brand, and risk management."

One example of why this is important is a new web site launch. In the early days of Google, if you did a good job of optimizing the web site, you could show up in search results within the first month for targeted keywords. A few years ago, it could take up to nine months for this to happen.

In a launch of "The Sensation of Sight" web site and blog, 42% of the traffic to the site was directly attributed to social media sites.

The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research released a report on social media available here in PDF format. It stated "In early 2007 the results of a groundbreaking study into the adoption of social media within the Inc. 500, an elite group of the fastest-growing companies within the United States, were released. When queried on the importance of social media, 26% of respondents in 2007 felt that social media is 'very important' to their business and marketing strategy. That figure rose to 44% in approximately one year."

Internet consultants at Consensus Technology will help you develop and implement a social media strategy coordinated with search engine optimization and marketing. Contact us at 888.309.6521, via our internet consulting contact form or on Twitter.

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