The social media wave continued to grow in 2010, expanding and receiving a huge amount of attention from the media and web marketing professionals. Hollywood even got into the act with a movie on Facebook, a sure sign that public interest is peaking.
Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and many other social media sites, apps and tools gained visitors and have proliferated, chasing both B-to-C consumers and (not in-coincidently) rather large pools of venture capital funds salivating to get into the social media game. One can predict a Darwinian survival-of-the-fittest struggle in the next few years involving social media ventures, search engines and email services as visitor behaviors and usage evolve. We've been there before with Web 1.0 and 2.0. Social media giant Facebook is beginning to tower amongst the others in the emerging social media marketing landscape... rivaling and in some ways challenging the search engine giant Google. Linkedin is revolutionizing how we conduct person-to-person introductions, prospecting and business communication. Twitter has established a unique niche, with no competitors in sight.
But what does this mean to technical and industrial B-to-B marketers? While Social Media is growing in importance and is the popular hot topic of the day, Search Engine Marketing continues to matter, churning out vast numbers of valuable business leads. If you are marketing to engineers, scientists, managers, executives and other decision makers and professionals, webpage content is still king, no matter where you put it. These high value prospective clients don't use Facebook or Twitter to do research and find potential vendors... they use Google or Bing.
Search Engine Optimization, SEO, is fundamental to successful lead generation. What is SEO, but great content on a great webpage, on a great website? Have that great content well-linked both inside and outside of a website, keep the content fresh. By adding a modest Paid Search campaign to the mix one can achieve amazing commercial success.
It's perfectly OK to develop a rational Social Media B-to-B presence in 2011, just don't forget search engine content optimization on company websites.