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Social Media Markting: Hot or NOT for 2014?


As we prepare for the new year, it may be a good time to evaluate what is hot and not for social media in 2014.

HOT: Search + Social
Social media influences search rankings. This is a fact; Google has admitted it. Yet many social marketers don't understand search, and many search marketers see social media as link-baiting and spam. As social networks play a more important role in sending signals to search engines, search engine optimization and social media are becoming more and more linked. In 2014, we need to beocme more integrated, understand each other better and optimize to maximize our results.

NOT: Silos Between Marketing Groups
It is surprising to me how many SEO professionals don't really understand social media, as much as how many social marketers don't have a clue about SEO. Integration won't happen if this continues. Attend some conferences or trainingt o keep your skills up-to-date.

HOT: Paying to Play on Facebook
It is not surprising that organic visibility on Facebook has been on the decline over the past few years. Facebook recently acknowledged that brands should expect to pay to play on Facebook. Organic views for pages will continue to decline, and pages should expect to sponsor posts to generate visibility. If Facebook is a strategic channel, you should expect to increase your budget to maintain reach.

NOT: Expecting Continued Free Exposure
Growing a fan base on Facebook is no longer about buidling a free content distribution channel. According to Facebook and AdAge, the primary reason to build a fan ase is to increase the social context and therefore effectiveness of your advertising network. Don't count on continued free exposure.

HOT: Strategic Content Marketing
So the term "content marketing" is maybe overused. All marketing involves content of some sort. But in 2014, we'll see brands getting deeper into content marketing. They continue to build their own branded and non-branded content assets and "brands as publishers" will continue to grow as a trend. In 2014, this strategy will also be expected to deliver measurable ROI.

NOT: Calling Google+ a Ghost Town
Maybe Google+ is a ghost town (very few people use it actively), but calling it a ghost town means that you are missing the point of it. Google+ is about identity and connecting to search results. Calling it a ghost town, while possibly accurate, shows that you are missing the actual point of Google Plus.

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