Does Your Website Have Too Much Social Media Scenery?

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If you haven’t noticed this website underwent a facelift sometime ago. Like most others who blog or work in social media, putting a default “Follow Me!” widget with our social media icons or even Facebook and Twitter widgets showing our latest tweets or posts is a common practice. Often these elements are displayed in the prime areas of a website – top righthand corner and above the fold righthand sidebar.

Let’s take a step back now. While we engage in social media to build community and communicate with our customers and prospects, we also use social media to attract social media users to our websites from a lead generation perspective. Now that they have finally found our website, why are we leading them away? Do we want them to go somewhere else? I think not.

In my LinkedIn business book I have a chapter about social media optimization where I talk in detail about the different ways to make LinkedIn an integral part of your website. I mention that, when you can’t get a conversion, at least you can aim for a “soft” conversion where someone signs up to receive your updates on their social media platform of choice. But should that widget be squatting on prime real estate on your website?

It shouldn’t, should it?

There’s no question that there is a place for social media icons, but since they are not your primary call to action, don’t treat them as such. I put mine in the bottom footer, but I also have them on my “About” page. That is a logical place – if they’ve already gotten to the bottom of any given page they are fully engaged with my website, and if they want to find out more about me, they can “check out” my social properties to confirm my social activity and potentially follow me.

There IS a place for social media on your website to display your Social Proof. You don’t need to do it with any and every site that you are a member of. Pick the one where you have the biggest following, which for many is Twitter, and show your follower count with a popular Twitter widget.

At the end of the day, what is the primary Call to Action of your website? It probably isn’t in leading people elsewhere, so help yourself out by moving your social media icons elsewhere.

Am I crazy or would you agree with the above?

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