2 Things that Will Kill Even the Best Social Media Strategy

social media, facebook killerSocial media is the newest, most exciting form of marketing. Everyone wants to know connect with the 600 million people on Facebook and the 200 million Twitter users as evidenced by the 200+ people already signed up for the Social Media for Pastors and Church Planters Webinar I’m leading Thursday.

Social media does have a lot of potential. Companies are using it to develop relationships with new and existing customers. Non-profits are using Facebook and Twitter to connect with new and existing donors and volunteers.

But you can create a brilliant social media strategy, get all the best tools, and empower a bright, savvy person to lead it all, and you’ll fail miserably if you have these two things.

1) An ugly website

Just this past week I talked to two people who told me straight up they won’t share their organization’s website with people because they think it looks embarrassing. If you’re website looks bad, you need to address that before jump into social media. Most people who lead organizations with bad websites don’t realize how bad everyone else thinks it is. So, if you think your site looks fine, you probably ought to ask 3 or 4 people you trust to give you an honest opinion.

I’m not suggesting your website needs to look amazing (unless you’re in an artistic field), just make sure it’s not an embarrassment.

2) Lack of original content

The most successful people and organizations on Facebook and Twitter are the ones that provide value to their followers. They create content that’s funny, inspiring, or useful for improving your life. If you don’t create original content, what are you going to share on Facebook and Twitter? If you don’t create original content, what are other people going to share and retweet?

Blogging, podcasting and/or posting videos are essential to social media success. If you’re not creating original content, why not? Do you have insight to share with others? Are there stories you can tell about what your organization is doing, what people are doing with your products, or lives that are been changed?

Social media does not exist in a vacuum. It hasn’t made other forms of online and offline marketing obsolete. In fact, it’s made them all more important as social media multiplies the impact of a good website and good content.

Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, elder of CypressMeadows.org, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck and add him to your circles at Google+ as +Paul Steinbrueck.

6 Responses to “2 Things that Will Kill Even the Best Social Media Strategy”

  1. Alexandra Tamayo Mar 8, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    I totally agree with you (sorry if my english is not that good at all, Im a spanish spoken) everything has to mantain a coherence between your identity and your organization mision or philosophy. So you have to use all the tools to make followers enter your site more than once by attracting them to go farther than one-time-like providing useful information.

  2. We often get questions in SEOmoz Q & A asking how to speed up the process, whether it’s for SEO, Social, whatever. But I like the simplicity of “It takes time.” It’s like with anything of value, it takes time. Good things don’t often come quickly. :) For us, we tripled our Twitter followers (yea yea I know it’s not about the number) & engagement levels by simply talking to people. It took a year of engaging constantly on Twitter (something we used to not do).

  3. Agreed! But not only a good looking website, a fast easy to navigate website. Sometimes, especially artist sites, designers put cool ahead of functionality. It may look real nice with all flash this and that, but if it takes more than 15 seconds to load, there I go, see you later….like never.

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