In more ways than one, Facebook is becoming just as important as Google to online marketers. Today’s wake up call is news from Compete.com that Facebook is the leading referrer (source of traffic) to big portal and news sites like MSN and Yahoo!, sending significantly MORE traffic than Google. Social media, and Facebook in particular, is not a fad, or limited to Internet experts. Social media is becoming just as important as search to users, and in turn, should be a high priority to those planning and approving marketing campaigns.
Many businesses are taking a wait and see approach to social media. Decision makers want to see case studies and ROI, which is fine and good. There are plenty of examples of social media success, but truthfully many are relatively shallow this early in the game. Getting in the game and figuring out what works for your customer, for your audience and for your business is a process of trial and error. Laggards will have an uphill fight because lessons learned will not be easily applicable across businesses. And earning an audience is a long-term process, so getting started now will only help you when you do have formulas that are effective.
What is clear at this point is that social media is here, its a big online movement, and any serious online marketing campaign should be incorporating social elements.