Interesting… During the past month or so, I’ve been working on finding traffic outside search engines and more on social sites. When it comes to things getting viral, the game sort of changes depending on niche/topic you’re covering.
I made a post in my photography blog a few weeks ago – and I decided to embed videos instead of writing a long article because I’m lazy and as usual, I posted the URL to StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit, Delicious, and Pinterest on top of the usual FB/Twitter.
You can see the near-instant spike in traffic for this post. It literally tripled my daily traffic. All that from StumbleUpon alone.
The lack of ‘action’ or referring traffic from Digg and Reddit tells me that this isn’t really something they’re after unless I have a big enough ‘circle’ in those sites to share my content to, but the crowd over at StumbleUpon seems to like it very much.
The spike in traffic lasted a full week before the virality died down, but due to the spike, I got a boost in RSS subscribers and returning traffic.
“Content is King” means differently for viral campaigns vs. SEO apparently.
For Learn Niche Marketing, I tried it with the Pinterest post I made a couple of weeks ago, I tried the same method and made people ‘pin’ my post on Pinterest and see what happened, the results were immediate as well, though it didn’t last as long as the StumbleUpon experiment above.
This is just two of the five experiments I’ve conducted this month, and I’ll continue to do more until I actually find a method that works for my particular niches, but here are some basic takeaways.
Social Media Is a Force
As powerful as ranking high on search engines may be, we cannot ignore the fact that information sharing and data gathering has slowly been moving towards the social space, and Google’s not ignoring that fact hence their repeated attempts to get a viral social media community going the past half a decade or so.
While organic searches still bring in a huge chunk of traffic, it’s a very software-driven traffic that can wreak havoc to your website’s income if the search engine changes don’t go your way.
Collectively, social media traffic can equal, if not exceed the traffic you’re getting from organic search engine traffic, and if you’re building Amazon review sites that foster a little community’s interest, you can further shield yourself from finicky search engine algorithm changes even more by leveraging social media traffic.
Know Your Audience
Many of us read about new technologies taking over the web every single month. Many of us rode through the Friendster, MySpace, Multiple, Digg, Facebook, Twitter, G+, and now, Pinterest wave and have heard great success by marketers on each.
The fact is this, all of these sites are mechanisms to get traffic from effective marketing, they do not magically do the marketing research for you.
Demographics is one of the most important factors to consider when picking a social media platform to market to.
If you try to market to all social media sites, you’ll either run out of resources (time and labor) or see your efforts go to waste because of the wrong target market.
Imagine if you’ve started a company selling the best-tasting caviar ever.
You know your product is the best and highest of quality and your pricing will give you good profit margins, yet just because you’ve heard that in your state, the places with the most foot and vehicle traffic are around the 4 major universities.
You’ve heard a record store, a Gap outlet, a gadget store, a comic store, and a burger chain raking in massive transactions and profits due to the traffic these four universities bring, so you decide to open 1 store around each of these four universities.
Since you also have the budget, you’ve decided to put up more stores around the next state’s major universities as well.
Here’s the thing, your caviar costs $250 a can, and most college students don’t even know what caviar is. Does relying on traffic potential alone make sense?
Of course not!
Each social network has its own targeted demographics, and depending on the purpose of your site, you have to pick a couple of social networks to really hammer and concentrate on in terms of time and resource investment.
For example, I covered Pinterest in my previous post, and how well it works for certain niches that thrive on visual attraction rather than a good copy, it’s critical to know WHO uses Pinterest as well in order to decide whether it’s the right place for your site to be.
Women Rules Social Media
Interestingly, it’s women who are the most active and engaged users of social media, in general. The data collected by Brian Solis summarizes the major social media demographics quite easily.
In addition, the age groups between 24-45 are the most active users of social media as well, despite the amount of time young teens seem to spend on their social media platforms.
What Does All These Mean To An Amazon Affiliate?
Simple, when you’re creating a niche site, think beyond search volume and price of the item. Think about who’s going to read and buy from your site rather than just how many people are out there.
More importantly, do not blindly post on all social media outlet just because guru A says Facebook works, doesn’t mean your niche site (or business) fits the demographics of that social platform.
I’ve seen people trying to post industrial parts with ugly images on Pinterest and wonder why they never get repins and quickly dismiss Pinterest is a fad and failure, or those posting sexy women photos on a site that caters to mothers only.
If you post “how to knit baby wool caps” on 9GAG, don’t expect the millions of visitors to convert to any sales other than snide, sarcastic remarks from the highschool to college crowd.
Treat social media sites like forums. Pick the right site and engage with the small community, and share in a medium that the demographics will accept easily, you can see your social media referral traffic grow faster than organic SEO can, especially if your site is still young.