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Are you a social media marketing trapper?

I believe that all social media marketing campaigns should probably start with foraging (as I discussed last week) — but as you grow, you need to evolve, especially if you need to bring home more and more food. Social media trappers have figured out how to use hashtags as well as how to generate compelling content with the express purpose of sharing, content that is somewhere else, content that doesn’t live on a social network but, rather, lives on a branded web site, corporate site, blog, or microsite.

All roads lead to branded content that both highlights capabilities, products, services, case studies, and the mad talent therein via explicit links back, allowing social media trappers to lure their followers and people in their professional or social media space to not only be discovered but to also link away from Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, and even Tumblr back to where the source content lives.

Most trappers these days call themselves “content marketers” and what they do is “content marketing.”

And, if they’re doing their jobs well enough, their goal is to both set their own traps but also to make these traps “contagious” enough that this content is shared, retweeted, reshared, liked, and favorited — essentially like a floor entirely festooned with mousetraps to the point where setting off just one would have the effect of setting them all off.

While most social media trappers, AKA content marketers, write content that is meaningful to them personally, professionally, or in relation to the work they do or have done — their experience; many tend to surf trends.

They’ll figure out what they want to catch in their trap and then create content — also known as bait — that is most compelling to that audience. The vertical’s catnip, if you will. While this can surely be an authentic pursuit where you use your continued knowledge and understanding of your clientele to create better and better traps — the elusive better mousetrap — this sort of trend-surfing can also be “abused” by ginning up the appeal based on what’s going on in the news, on reddit, on Buzzfeed, or what’s trending on Twitter or Google at the time.

The most successful trappers who are really better at attracting and driving traffic than they are at building long-term trust relationships tend to be the best social media hijackers. They do things such as mis-tagging their social content via mis-categorization or by using hashtags or keywords that are much more popular and timely than they are accurate.

Even though the old reliable “keyword stuffing” from the nascent days of SEO are pretty much deceased, the strategy is still popular with social media trappers.

Even more, the content-creation for content marketing can trend-surf as well.

Since time began — or at least since blogs began (actually before then, newspapers, television, radio, and all the rest are either breaking something new or surfing the wave of interest that results) there has been an entire economy of bloggers who work to create content as quickly as possible in response to breaking news — this is just the natural extension of it. It required fast-and-dirty writing and the willingness to get something out there first and maybe do some editing after.

It always benefits a social media trapper if they can secure a place on Google News, the trendiest of all news aggregators on the web.

At the end of the day, however, content marketing is not good enough on its own and neither is trend surfing. At the end of the day, all of these things are just more and more elaborate and compelling lures — it’s all baiting the trap.

What do you have planned for when the trap is sprung? Punji trapping pit? Steel jaw legholds? A snare? Drag noose? Twitch-up? Deadfall? Conibear?

Maybe a catch-and-release cage trap — non-lethal (but you need that meat!) Maybe a glue trap, then. Well, you obviously don’t want to literally trap your prospects, do you? But what is the figurative marketing trap? The email list, of course, a Feedburner RSS subscription, or maybe signing up for a free white paper, a sign-up form, or even just a contact form.

Otherwise, everything’s ephemeral. More like signing up for a safari in Africa and bringing your Nikon in lieu of digging elephant-sized holes and covering them up or — better — bringing a .470 Nitro Express elephant gun; however, that’ll take us to hunting and this is about trapping.

One of the downsides of trapping is that most game is too smart for traps; another issue is that traps are mostly good for small- to medium-sized varmints; you’ll also only just get what you get; finally, the trap doesn’t always hold or you might not be able to rush around making sure all your traps are freshly-baited and attended to — it really is a full-time job.

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Chris Abraham

Chris Abraham

Chris Abraham, digital strategist and technologist, is a leading expert in digital: search engine optimization (SEO), online relationship management (ORM), Internet privacy, Wikipedia curationsocial media strategy, and online public relations with a focus on blogger outreachinfluencer engagement, and Internet crisis response, with the digital PR and social media marketing agency Gerris digital. [Feel free to self-schedule a 15-minute call, a 30-minute call, or a 60-minute call with me] A pioneer in online social networks and publishing, with a natural facility for anticipating the next big thing, Chris is an Internet analyst, web strategy consultant and adviser to the industries' leading firms. Chris Abraham specializes in web technologies, including content marketing, online collaboration, blogging, and consumer generated media.  Chris Abraham was named a Top 50 Social Media Power Influencer by Forbes, #1 PR2.0 Influencer by Traackr, and top-10 social media influencers by Marketwire; and, for what it’s worth, Chris has a Klout of 79 the last time he looked. Chris Abraham started doing web development back in 1994, SEO in 1998, blogging in 1999, influencer engagement in 2003, social media strategy in 2005, blogger outreach in 2006, and Wikipedia curation in 2007. Feel free to self-schedule a 15-minute call, a 30-minute call, or a 60-minute call. If you want to know the services that Chris offers check out Services If you want to work with Chris use the Contact Form You're welcome to follow me via Social Media You can learn more about Chris over in About Chris writes a lot so check out the Blog Chris offers webinars so check Events

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