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B2B Marketing

Social Networks Offer Various Degrees of Success

Social network advertising is pulling in big bucks these days. eMarketer expects spending at nearly $8 billion for social media impressions in 2012. So how are the top SN sites positioned to generate ROI for your company?


Earlier this year released its 2nd annual Guide to the Social Landscape. The report rated the top nine sites in terms of customer communications, brand exposure, traffic to site, and SEO. The sites were graded Good, Okay and Bad. Here are the ratings arranged by attributes (including comments):


                Customer Communications



                Facebook – “…Facebook is the hub through which businesses want to drive social interaction.”

Twitter – “Twitter is the ultimate outbound messaging tool. Inbound communications are quick and to the point.”

YouTube – “…video is a powerful channel for quickly responding to customer complaints…It is…

the best venue for reputation ‘repair'”.

Tumblr – “The growing segment of Tumblr users and the ability to ask and answer questions makes the site a potential darling for customer communications.”



Flickr – “As a PR tool, Flickr gives company-sponsored events a pictorial home that can be more professional and better organized than on other social image-sharing sites (including Facebook).”

LinkedIn – “…you can potentially engage customers by encouraging employees to answer industry-related questions…”

Digg – “Customer interaction is non-existent…but the intrinsic value of exposure…can highlight other sites where customer communication is strong.”

Reddit – “Any time you open your company up to the growing masses at Reddit, there is a chance it can backfire.”



StumbleUpon – “…not a tool that is useful for customer communications.”


                Brand Exposure



Facebook – “Using pages as a persona allows companies to position their brands on other relevant pages.”

Twitter – “It isn’t what you’re saying…that exposes your brand. It’s what you can get others to say about you that has the real impact.”

LinkedIn – “…great for personal branding and showing the professional prowess in your organization.”

YouTube – “…second only to Facebook when people are researching your company.”

Digg – “Brands have an opportunity to gain mass exposure on Digg, particularly through the most interesting stories about your company.”

Tumblr – “Tumblr’s simple platform and extreme ability to have content share…make it a viable branding tool.”



Flickr – “Flickr’s improved search engine rankings and integration with other sites makes it the…image posting service of choice.”

StumblUpon – “You can target very accurately, but keep in mind you are paying $.05 per visit ($50 CPM).”



Reddit – “Attempting to build your brand on Reddit is like trying to sell whale meat to Greenpeace.”


Traffic to Site



Digg – “…it is still the most consistent viral-traffic generation site that can send tens of thousands of visitors to individual posts.”

StumbleUpon – “…the social media equivalent of a traffic grand slam – it doesn’t happen often, but, when it does, it’s huge.”



Facebook –“While the ‘viral potential’ is lower on Facebook than others, nothing is more consistent at driving a steady flow of traffic to every message or post.”

Twitter – “The prevalence of noise and span have reduced Twitter’s ability to send direct traffic. However, it is an exceptional tool for assisting with traffic generation from other sites…”

YouTube – “…growing in the traffic-generation segment…Click on content links are still minimal…but have seen a recent rise.”

Reddit – “Reddit has emerged…as the best social news traffic-generation site on the Internet.”



Flickr – “Even if you get tens of thousands of visits to a photo…the click-through rates are among the lowest around.”

LinkedIn – “LinkedIn continues to improve its standing in traffic generation…It isn’t as consistent as Facebook or as viral as Digg…”

Tumblr – “Images can get traffic. Otherwise there is no real traffic potential yet.”


Search Engine Optimization



Flickr – “…very much indexed in search engines and pass links and page ranks.”

YouTube – “Very good for building links…because the videos rank very well.”

Digg – “Very good…even if your story doesn’t become popular, it will still get your page indexed very quickly.”

StumbleUpon – “Very good if your story makes it to the top page for its tag. Due to (its) large user base, many people can find your stories and link to them.”

Tumblr – “The blogging nature…allows for extremely high potential (for link building).”



Twitter – “The links are ‘no follow’ but the social component is real and expected to become more prominent…”

LinkedIn – “Very high page rank…High SEO for vanity search for your name…”

Reddit – “If you make the front page, a lot of sites will pick up your story, generating valuable back links.”



Facebook – “While the links themselves are ‘no follow’, the search benefits exist, especially in instances where ‘query deserves freshness’.”





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Adam Vandergang

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