Content Marketing, Convince and Convert, Digital Marketing, Social Media Strategy, Blogging and Content Creation, Integrated Marketing and Media, Search Marketing Advice

5 Search and Social Trends for 2011

Recently, I participated in a Webinar with my friend and client Chris Baggott of Compendium. We talked about the convergence of search and social media, and how content marketing is bridging both areas.

We settled on 5 trends that we think will be especially important in 2011 (read or print yourself via Scribd, or see below for short summary). Also, if you’re a content marketing fan, check out this other white paper on Rethinking Your Content Marketing Strategy.

Trends to Watch in 2011

1. Organizations Will Become Publishers
Every company needs to think of itself as a TV station, magazine, and newspaper. Make your own news. But be very strategic about keyword usage.

2. Organizations Will Better Understand What “Good” Content Is
Good content needs to solve your audience’s problems. That’s job one. Not search friendliness, or sharable. Does it solve a problem and answer a question?

3. Organizations Need to Better Understand Demand and Fulfillment Funnels
Traditional marketing creates demand. Social marketing fulfills demand. They aren’t at odds. They are part of an ecosystem that should be working together.

4. Conversion and Measurement Tools Will Force Social Media to Evolve
It’s time to think about social media with a purpose. Just showing up to the party isn’t enough anymore. There will be more talk (and more books) and more action about social media measurement, and how it ties to search.

5. Social Media Operations Will be Decentralized
As social grows, it will become a skill, not a job. More and more employees need to be answering the metaphorical social telephone.

  • http://mytwittertoolbox.com David Perdew

    Numbers 1 and 4 ring true the most for me, but they’re all good points, and likely realities in the future of social media marketing. Online publishing is becoming possible for anyone with a relevant opinion, and the process of creating content is closely tied to developing any sort of marketing momentum. Increasingly, what that also requires is that people are not only involved, but know how to get their message to the right people and keep their attention.

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      Thanks for the smart comment David. Your point about keeping attention is going to become even more critical. When there’s a flood of content, keeping people tuned in will be the real chore.

  • http://www.CycloneMarketing.info Catherine Lockey

    Thanks for spreading the word about the symbiotic relationship between search and social as well as the true purpose in content marketing. I believe social is already a skill which requires many talents and much ability. There is a painful lack of skill today and it is growing as the need for social grows.

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      Thanks for the very kind comment Catherine. I agree with you about social, and I hope that more and more companies start to decentralize their social efforts this year.

  • http://twitter.com/neicolec Neicole Crepeau

    Thanks, Jay. Good points and I think you’re on target with all of them. I do think that for #5, while operations may be decentralized, organizations are going to find the need to monitor and coordinate. If not this year, then next, businesses are going to find the need to help and educate social employees about brand messaging. Also, finding ways to close the loop and align what the marketing side is doing with what the service side is doing, to ensure a good customer experience.

    I agree with you on #1 and #2, and it’s great news for all those unemployed writers and journalists out there! I think we’re going to see businesses having to really focus on who their social audiences are and providing targeted information to those niches, in order to differentiate themselves from all the other content marketers out there, and really provide value to their audiences.

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      Combining marketing and customer service into a holistic whole is going to be the greatest long-term legacy of social media.

  • http://www.signalfireproductions.com Signalfire

    The statement “social media is a skill not a job” just hit me as one of those epiphany moments. All are fantastic points, but that one is really hitting the tuning fork with me. Thanks for the post!

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      You’re very welcome. T-shirts on the way! (not really, but maybe)

    • Jill

      I also loved #5. This will be interesting to see how it plays out. There will always be a ‘messy’ line between ‘customer service’ and marketing. Nothing is perfect, but this is what I love about social media. It’s powered by people and not advertising agencies. Hopefully.

      • http://www.darryljonckheere.com/blog Darryl Jonckheere

        I think many employees already speak indirectly on behalf of their company’s brand/image, whether they realize it or not simply by association. If you blog, Tweet, leave comments, it can be interesting to navigate that line between “these thoughts are my own” and “I work for so and so” when voicing your opinion.

  • ZoeyOgg

    #4 Measurement: basically you are just taking standard DR (direct response) techniques to measure. Fine, but I am tried of seeing “new ideas” for social media which are just natural pick-ups from traditional ways of doing things. Social media is just another outlet; not a whole new ballgame.

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      I agree 100% that social isn’t wholly new. I’m not sure why using proven DR tactics to measure is a problem?

      • ZoeyOgg

        I don’t find using DR tactics a problem. I guess my personal peeve is that Web 2.0 folks often dismiss marketing (which they don’t seem to clearly understand) and then borrow “marketing” techniques and tactics to apply to Web 2.0 as if they just figured out something new.

        • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

          I agree with that, unfortunately.

  • Cheryl Pickett

    I like #2, the key being “good” content. For quite a while now, I think many people in business and in general held the belief that writing is easy, that pretty much anyone can do it. Yes, we all learned it in elementary school, but creating content that hits the mark with readers is not a skill everyone has by a long shot. I also agree with the other comment that hopefully this need for strong content creation skills will be recognized and that those who actually can supply it will find more work along with respectable pay for that work.

    • http://www.convinceandconvert.com jaybaer

      Bingo Cheryl. The packaging is just as important – if not more so – than the content creation itself.

  • http://www.guptaguru.com/ Anil Gupta

    I see these Five things as the ’5 Must Adapt strategies for all online business marketing methods’. Great content!

  • David Levesque

    Very nice article. Clear, quick and to the point. I haven’t used Hubspot software yet but it seems like they have the best platform for measuring and optimizing all your online marketing. Love the simple idea you pose about the password of the day. Very simple, trackable and easy to implement.

  • http://www.npromote.com Jeffrey Gross

    Great post Jay! Social Marketing is often misjudged as platform for getting direct business, it should be used and pursued as a medium to generate awareness. coz when some one tries to use it merely for the purpose of generating business, the efforts are spammy and irrelevant (sometimes)

  • http://www.npromote.com Jeffrey Gross

    Great post Jay! Social Marketing is often misjudged as platform for getting direct business, it should be used and pursued as a medium to generate awareness. coz when some one tries to use it merely for the purpose of generating business, the efforts are spammy and irrelevant (sometimes)

  • http://www.npromote.com Jeffrey Gross

    Great post Jay! Social Marketing is often misjudged as platform for getting direct business, it should be used and pursued as a medium to generate awareness. coz when some one tries to use it merely for the purpose of generating business, the efforts are spammy and irrelevant (sometimes)

  • http://twitter.com/RyanCritchett Ryan Critchett

    I think you’re right. Especially with number 1. I’ve watched this whole thing evolve (as I’m sure you of all people have as well), and what I see is companies that don’t know this, that need to know this. We’re here talking about it on the net, some companies are implementing it but some are still stuck in dinosaur land!

    At any rate, I’m totally aligned with what you’re saying here. Great stuff.

  • http://www.davidcoupercoach.com David Couper

    I like your #3 – can you talk more about that push/pull. I haven’t seen that said this way before.

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