Social Media cutting SEO spend

Social media is showing much growth.  The simple reason is that it allows communities with similar interests, needs, and wants to collaborate and share.  These users within the communities grow to be become trusted networks over time.

As social media adoption grows, users will gain more and more information and recommendations from their trusted network.

So, could this be to the potential detriment of “search”?  Could SEO become less relevant as users ask their community and trusted networks for referrals in replacement of “search”.  No, I do not see search going away by any stretch of the imagination.  But I do see the possibility that search becomes used differently.

There is so much “marketing” attention to SEO these days.  I do think it is justified, now.  But as social media matures and becomes a ubiquitous tool, users will seek more information from their trusted network.  Search will continued to be heavily used, but marketers will rely less on search and SEO as a vehicle to create online visibility.  Brands will get greater visibility and ROI from other social media outlets by focusing on specific communities, influencers, and user peers.  This could mean less spending on SEO as Brands look to have greater online visibility via new marketing tactics.

I am interested to hear from the diverse perspectives out there.

Social Steve



Filed under marketing, SEO, social media, Social Steve, socialmedia, SocialSteve

8 responses to “Social Media cutting SEO spend

  1. ecairn

    I think you have a good point. I think good companies have reached the max of what they could get out of SEO but haven’t exploited what they could do with ‘their social media ecosystem’
    We blogged about what we think needs to happen now and we call it ‘SEO’ 😉 which stands for Social Ecosystem Optimization.

    • SocialSteve

      Laurent – thanks for the comments. I do think companies need to stay tuned to SEO ( the old definition – search engine optimization), BUT offset more budget and bandwith to social media. The measured value of social media (see newer post on my blog that covers this topic) will exceed measured value of SEO.

      Social Steve

  2. SocialSteve

    Interesting press release on this topic – agency:2 Research Shows Social Media Marketing Outperforms Search, Email and Online Advertising …

    Social Steve

  3. Hi Steve,

    I think most of martkeers are short term minded, either because of their own habits of doing their job or because of their managers who want results now!!!

    And as long as results / benefits for social media marketing can only be proven after a year or so, marketeers will easily be tempted to spend their budgets on SEM. From this point of view I understand why it’s hard for marketeers to take the decision to spend more on SMM. Maybe they should better read The Social Media Marketing Industry Report 2009:

    But on the other hand I personally I find it strange that marketeers easily neglect the basics of marketing – the value of durable relationships. SEM clearly doesn’t contribute to it, while SMM clearly does. I’ve written a longer blog about this fact, where I find that even after the whole malfunction of short term gains in the banking industry, marketeers do not see that they’re doing it themselves:

    The blog also contains a Forrester prediction of online marketing spending until 2013.

    • SocialSteve

      Hi Ha Vo,

      Thanks for your comments and two references (the report and your blog). I think both, as well as your comments here, are very worthwhile and provide good content for all interested in social media.

      Social Steve

  4. I agree. Social Media Optimization (SMO) is quickly becoming the new “in” thing and for great reason. SERPs now include factors such as the number of Tweets and we’re even seeing them being reported in different ways. With Twitter’s sponsored tweets (e.g., Facebook’s ability to add the Like button to your business or personal website (e.g., the importance of online reputation management tools (, the influence that bloggers have on the new face of PR and the ability to reach buyers directly now (, and the large number of studies that continue to appear on the effect that social media is having on purchasing ( and, we’re definitely in a new era. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a new title emerge: Chief Influence Officer.

    More and more we’re seeing less companies question the importance of SMO but how MUCH they should invest in it. I do anticipate trends going downward with SEO but the reality is that many companies are just now investing more heavily in SEO. More likely, we’ll see some kind of joint integration of SEO+SMO+future (i.e. Web 3.0/Mobile) = Traffic Optimization (TO).

    I’m going to be writing a more in-depth blog post on this very topic in the near future but I’m curious to hear your thoughts.

  5. No doubt social media has a large influence on SEO. Social media marketing is becoming increasingly standard in online marketing campaigns due to its known ability to build website traffic and inbound links.

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