There is a mad scramble among the big players of the Internet to control both search and social. Facebook has the highest traffic at present and a good hold on social media marketing. However, Twitter is still popular, though nowhere near as popular as Facebook. Google has the lion’s share of search in the bag with inroads into social media and Bing at its back door trying to knock it down. What would happen if one company controlled the flow of both search and social?
That would obviously not be good for anyone but that company. But how about a two-player field with one big player controlling search (Google) and one big player controlling social (Facebook). Which would be more important?
I don’t know that we could narrow that down just so. Both are important. Without SEO, a company would not have much chance to be found in the search engines. Even post-social, SEO is still important. Yet, social media marketing has increasingly become more and more important and it looks like it will continue to grow in importance.
One of the benefits to search marketing is you can measure nearly everything you do. That’s also one of the drawbacks to social media. There is so much that you cannot measure. Search puts more control in the hands of the marketer. Social puts more control in the hands of the consumer, or those being marketed to. Does that matter?
I think it does. In this age, consumers prefer to have control. And that could very well play into the hands of marketers. It certainly wouldn’t hurt your marketing any to give the nod to consumers and let them tell you what they want. You should have your ear to the ground anyway.
In the end, search and social compliment each other well. Both are important and you shouldn’t ignore either.