Now that social media participation has become an integral aspect of the marketing mix, businesses are finding ways to increase the return on their social participation through paid amplification.
The impact on SEO alone can make this an attractive place to invest real dollars and Facebook’s growing importance for marketing is poised to threaten Google’s stranglehold gained through our dependence on organic search.
While initial social media initiatives were focused primarily on building and engaging in organic ways, smart marketers are now adding paid campaign support to the social mix very much like search engine marketing relies on PPC ad support.
This two prong approach still relies heavily on the creation of content worthy of sharing, liking, and following, but adds the dimension of paid campaigns to highlight and spread the published content.
Lead generation in this content driven social model is still a metered blend of advertising, public relations and referrals, but social is the mechanism driving the discovery and the conversation surrounding this powerful form of lead acquisition.
Armed with the tools to measure the effectiveness of any campaign in terms of likes, visits, mentions, and conversions, marketers are turning to campaigns that include sponsored blog posts, Google PPC, and Facebook Ads to create content awareness and social engagement over all things – and this may indeed be the most effective form of advertising currently available online.
The key to the effectiveness of this approach resides in building the organic side first. Paid social support is much more effective at producing results when you already have 10,000 Facebook Fans than it is at supporting the launch of your participation in a network where little engagement exists.
This is a trend that large organizations and agencies have been jumping on heavily over the last six months, but it’s a model that even the smallest of organizations needs to learn to embrace as a foundational lead generation approach.