I don’t play a venture capitalist in the real world or on TV, but I’m intensely curious about what’s going on in that market. Having been burned once or twice over the last 20 years by companies folding their tents and disappearing the middle of the night, I like to know where things are headed. Which is why I’m so drawn to the big theme that’s going around that social media’s bubble soon will burst. Some folks are even advising you how you can survive the social crash—i.e., an inevitability.
Of course, they’re talking about financials—not to suggest those aren’t important. But they’re important to you only if you’re an investor.
For most marketers, the question instead is: What happens to my friends, fans and followers if one of my social traffic generators goes belly up?
Hopefully, it won’t happen to you. But given the climbing street value of an ounce of prevention, here are a few tips to help you prepare:
- Do you know which social services matter to your business? Start with this. Use your analytics and customer database to segment your traffic and revenues by source. Then give priority on the next steps to sources that are both high risk and high impact.
- Still not sure which channel is working for you? Instead of blasting the same message to all social channels, launch targeted campaigns and evaluate the performance of each. Segmentation rules when it comes to prioritization, so it’s worth your time to answer these first two questions.
- Focus on converting to customers. Using your priority list, launch an acquisition campaign to convert your friends, fans and followers to members of your email marketing list or membership programs. Hopefully you’re doing this already. But, if not, now’s a good time to start. Plus, adding these individuals into your regular customer systems will help you gauge the overall value of a given social media channel to your business.
- Integrate, integrate, integrate. There’s nothing wrong with having a presence on as many social networks as are worth your time, but don’t isolate that content to just one channel. The more you can integrate that content into your own web presence, the more protection you’ll have against a crash.
This list is by no means comprehensive. In fact, I’d also recommend looking at our past “disaster recovery” tips for some additional ideas on how to prepare for a worst-case scenario. But, whether a social crash comes or not, follow these tips and you’re likely to improve your peace of mind and your bottom line.
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