Social media, the new search engine?

September 19, 2012 3:01 pm

Looking for a restaurant, reading the news or want a review on a product, how do you go
about finding it? Google? Yahoo? Or perhaps you use social media?

Social media is fast becoming one of the ways in which we find information. It is not
simply a place to share pictures with friends or let people know what we are up to. It is a
means of finding information. A recent survey has highlighted just how much browsers
rely on social media to get the information that they need.

Video search specialists, blinkx, have stated that Twitter and Facebook are having
a dramatic impact on what we watch, listen to and even read. Matt Scheybeler from
blinkx has said, “We use search as a starting point less often and instead we’ve become
comfortable scanning and processing long streams of information – Facebook pages and
Twitter feeds – a content universe delivered to us by our friends and the people we follow,
and increasingly we’re accessing that content through tablets and smartphones.”

Other statistics that came out from the survey showed that 58% of people use mobile
devices to view content.

Get more from social media


Which leads me to my point, how are you using your social media? If it is now a place of
information and search, is your social media doing what it should be? If you are currently
updating your social media with pure sales messages then you could be missing the point.

Your social media should be sharing views, news, ideas and more importantly, asking your
customers what they think. Start engaging with them, ask them questions and allow your
social media portal to become a place of real knowledge.

This will enhance your brand, grow your followers and provide you with a great deal of
valuable information from your customer base.

Here are a few tips to help you:

– If you see something interesting, even if it isn’t relevant to your industry, share it
– Ask questions, encourage reviews
– Don’t be tempted to delete any negative views. Tackle them head on
– Check what is trending and get engaged
– Follow people/brands that are really big on Twitter and see what they are doing

Don’t be afraid to really use Twitter and Facebook to your advantage. It doesn’t need to
be all formal. It is a social tool after all!


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