Social media is still a new thing, and has now become more than just a fad. Whenever something new comes along, it is dwarfed by people giving their opinion, and so-called marketing experts giving their advice. Opinion and fact become blurred and myths are born. This sort of thing happens all the time, such as how E-bay was said to be able to make you a millionaire, or how people were getting rich with affiliate advertising. It gets to the point where misinformation is passed along so much that it is hard to tell if it is a true fact, misunderstandings or a myth. Here are three social media myths, and why you should not believe them.
1. It is desperately needed if you want to reach Google’s top spot
Social media is not a desperately needed element if you want to reach the top spot with Google, Bing or Yahoo! Social media is not actually needed if you want to reach the top spot. Social media will simply make getting to the top a little easier, but so will every aspect of your SEO campaign. Other SEO elements such as keywords in your content, and linking from other domains, are going to help you to reach the top spot as much as your social media campaign is.
In truth, social media should be a part of a well-managed and balanced SEO marketing campaign. But to say that it is needed, in the same manner that blood is needed in living creatures, is not true. There are plenty of websites that are sitting at the top spot right now that do not have a single trace of social media within their website or external SEO elements.
2. Your marketing campaign will be lost if you don’t include social media
Your online marketing campaign is supposed to find the right consumer for your product, and sell them the idea of buying it. This does not mean that you have to involve social media. Many online sources talk about social media as if it is the life-blood of the marketing industry. They seem to forget that people were selling products online, long before social media became popular.
Your first job is to find the right consumer. Social media has made it easy because the user is asked for a lot of demographic information whilst signing up for their social media profile. However, traditional demographic identifiers still exist. Just because social media made the demographic side easier to identify, does not mean it is the only source. Young people are still going to visit young people sites, and people from one area are still going to search for stores in their area. Young men are still going to search for different things to young women, and the elderly are still going to be attracted to the same things they were before social media came along.
Even if we remove the targeting benefits of social media and look at its promotional side, social media offers nothing more than any other promotional tool. Social media has the power to allow you to disseminate information to literally millions of people. This sounds powerful right? Until you mention the fact that, in order to contact these people, they have to agree to check your fan page, be your friend, be your follower, or look at your content. It is no less difficult to get someone to pay attention to you than if you were to set up a banner ad. The level of difficulty does not decrease–it is simply the rules of the game that change.
3. Social media can be manipulated to push you up to Google’s top spot
Every element that is needed for SEO is followed by armies of people thinking they can manipulate them to get to the top spot. It is true that you can exert an influence over the many elements relating to SEO, but manipulating it to get to the top spot is a little different. You can go the beach and dig a little trench to slow the coming of the tide a bit, but you cannot slow the entire ocean from encroaching, anymore than you can control the time that the sun sets.
People try to manipulate SEO elements all the time. People try to get the most links, the most social media mentions, the most guest blogging post, etc. But these cannot be leveraged on their own to get you to the top spot. Google is well aware that you can set up several social media profiles and use them to create social media mentions, links and markers. You are not going to fool them, and they are not stupid enough to push you to the top spot just because you are popular on a social media site.
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