The Hidden Power of Social Media Marketing

Andrew Schulkind  |  January 20, 2015

This past weekend, my family and I took a sort of stay-cation in New York City. (“Sort of” because while we don’t live in the city any more, we’re there often enough that it’s not really a vacation spot.)

Still, we stayed in a hotel and did some touristy things – the Museum of the the Moving Image is worth the quick subway trip out to Queens – so it was a vacation.

The details of our trip probably wouldn’t interest you much, but the way the trip was planned should: nearly everything we did for 48 hours was based on social media research, particularly the restaurants we ate in.

Even more interesting is that the social media research was driven by our daughters, a middle schooler and a high Now, they have some pretty hip friends, and they’re pretty hip themselves, but no-one in their circle spends a lot of time dining on their own in NYC. Social media’s reach is what allowed them to find the funky little neighborhood places we went to (I’m talking about you, Egg Shop.)

Sadly, none of these businesses asked how we’d found them. Only one even asked if we were first-time guests or repeat visitors. I was surprised, given that we clearly did not fit their normal demographic, at least not based on the people dining around us.

B2B businesses tend to be more intent on learning of a lead’s origins, so this is less of a problem for most of us, but we should all be sure to ask the right questions. A new lead might come to you through your website, but whether they found your website through social media, a search engine query, or via word of mouth from an existing customer should make all the difference in your marketing plans going forward.

In other words, the marketing that works isn’t always immediately apparent. Don’t ignore the invisible but effective parts of your marketing. And do all you can to shine a light on what works.