There is a lot debate about how ‘valuable’ Social Media is as far as a businesses bottom line (sales or leads relating sales) is concerned. From what I have seen and read, most of the comments and views seem to take the line that Social Media whilst being good for creating and increasing brand awareness, it is not that good at making sales.
For my part I don’t totally agree with that stance, as in just the last few weeks I have overseen a Social Media campaign that did make sales. Admittedly these were sales of tickets for an event and not goods, but they were sales and the event will I’m sure being in a lot of money for the company concerned.
However, let us take the view that Social Media will not result in sales, at least as well as good old fashioned Search Engine Optimisation, as that is at least the majority view at the moment.
Why then is the trend on spend for spend on both SEO and Social Media predicted to be the way it is?
As you can see, Forrester are predicting that Social Media will represent some 26% of spend on marketing by 2016, against just 12% on SEO. When this is set against 2011 the differences are staggering, as then just 4.6% of spend was on Social Media against 54.4% on SEO.
The reasons behind this are potentially many, but for my part I think that there are two main factors:-
- That SEO is becoming more and more difficult as Google’s rules become more and more complex and harder to influence
- That the huge amount of Hype about Social Media is causing businesses of all types to leap on the bandwagon, without any idea of why and where it is going.
Only time will tell if the current trend to spending on Social Media will continue, in the meantime however, I feel that it is up to companies like Serendipity to ensure that businesses know the differences and what they can expect from both mediums.