Now that we have a lot more data in the hopper, it’s beginning to look like social media isn’t the magic pill many people thought it would be when it comes to marketing.
Today, we have numbers from Outbrain. This is the company that makes the “You Also Might Like” widget that suggests related content at the bottom of a blog post. They examined traffic from 100 million sessions across more than 100 premium publishers in order to find out how people are discovering content and what happens when they get there.
As we’ve seen from other surveys, the majority of traffic comes from search engines (41%) and content sites (31%). They say social media sends 11% of the traffic, which is better than the 1% ForeSee suggested, but it’s still not fabulous.
The bigger bad news is that once those social media butterflies land at your site, they don’t stay long.
If you’re looking for “hyper-engaged” readers, those that click through five or more pages on your site, forget the guy who came from Twitter. A link from another content site is three times more likely to be engaged, and someone coming in from search, is also above average.
These results shouldn’t be surprising to anyone. We know that social media is all about instant gratification. It’s the salmon puff on a cocktail party tray. It comes by, it looks good, you grab it. Doesn’t mean you’d like to have an entire meal of nothing but salmon puffs, right?
Search, on the other hand, is like going out to dinner. You have a need (hunger), you find a good place, you sit down and you dine for a half hour or more. (It’s lunch time, folks, can’t help the food analogies.)
What this means for marketers is that you have to grab visitors in the first few seconds when they hit your site, or those who came in from social media will be lost.