3 of Social Media’s Roles in Inbound Marketing

Social Media Inbound MarketingThere are several reasons and benefits to using social media as part of your online marketing strategy. But why is it used specifically with inbound marketing, why should you use it, how can you tell it works, what does Hubspot suggest?

3 of the Roles Social Media in Inbound Marketing

1. Social media = permission marketing

When you get a like, follow or plus that person is saying I like you, your content, products, services, and I want to see more from you. That gives you the opportunity to build a relationship with this person, to influence how they feel about you, your industry and your products.

It also gives you the opportunity to turn these people into customers, and advocates for your brand, that is the beauty of permission marketing, they aren’t bombarded by your ads, because they want to hear from you.

2. Social media = more reach

Five years ago when you wrote an article for your website, what did you do with it? You published it, maybe you sent an email showing others, but then you waited and hoped for search engines to pick it up, for people to email it around, or maybe another publication to use it in their marketing.

Now when you post an article or blog, you can immediately get traffic to it, if you have a following on any social media website. All of those people who gave you permission, you can now send that article out to, and ask them to share it on other social platforms, to bring buzz and awareness to your new content, meaning new campaigns can move much faster, and start getting traction within minutes of a launch.

3. Social media= SEO

And, because this buzz is going on, Google (the largest search engine) indexes your content faster, and then proceeds to rank it according to the links, retweets, and other SEO attributes involved.

Google has and continues to place more importance on social media as it has quickly become the way to share content, and an enormous percentage of the online population is active on Facebook, Twitter and other platforms.

Social Media Inbound Marketing ROI

You can probably tell from the 3 ways social media contributes to inbound marketing that it is difficult at best to track exactly how much money you are making from social media alone.

With permission based marketing, you are getting several benefits, especially that of being able to be part of the online word of mouth discussion, but unless this is the only way you are marketing, it is difficult to see how much it helps.

With your social media reach, it is a bit easier to tell how social is helping, as long as you have a decent following and great content to share.

You can post your new blog posts to social accounts and immediately start seeing traffic come to your website, and if you have a good funnel set up you should get some social media ROI here.

When it comes to SEO, there is going to be a combined effort from your blogging and on-site SEO efforts, and sharing across social media, but this, again, is much more difficult to identify how much social is helping.

The only real way to tell how much social is helping?

Establish a baseline for how your company is currently doing with your inbound marketing efforts, and then add social media in. You have to give it a few months, and then you should be able to take the new results and compare them to your old results.

You’ll have to look closely, to see where you conversions are coming from, where you are getting traffic, how organic search has changed since your implementation, but you should see a difference, improvements, and lower cost per leads.

This requires tracking. Luckily Hubspot uses a nice interface and tracking system that allows you to see where a conversion came from, along with how much traffic you are getting, and from what source. Be careful though, these numbers are not perfect.

Contacts for instance are only from people who came directly from that source and signed up, not from someone that has visited the site multiple times and finally showed up. Traffic from social media, might seem like it isn’t growing, but search traffic may have increased dramatically.

There are several ways a social media presence can and will make a difference to your inbound marketing campaigns, but you have to know what you are looking for, have previous metrics to compare to, and give it time to start working.

After a good 6 months, compare all of your stats, and you should see exactly how social media is playing a role in your inbound campaign. Have questions? Submit a comment below, or hit us up on Facebook or Twitter to get an answer :)

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  1. I liked how you explained how social media was permission marketing and the search engines rank you higher with engagement.

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