for W3c validation
John Battelle has a great post up titled “Put Your Taproot Into the Independent Web“. It’s worth reading.
The gist of John’s argument is that you shouldn’t put all your online eggs into a basket that you don’t control (like Facebook). It’s vital to your long term business to have your own brand, independent of Facebook, Google, Twitter, and the multitude of other social sites in existence. In other words, your roots need to be planted in the independent web (your domain name, your platform).
If you aren’t rooted in the independent web? Well, Facebook could wake up tomorrow, decide they want to get into your exact vertical/business model…shut off your access and build their own interface that does the exact same thing. And there is not a damn thing you could do about it. In life, and business — diversification is key. It’s the same root reason that, if the majority of traffic is SEO traffic, you are at a strategic disadvantage to someone who has built a real brand. With Google accounting for the majority of your traffic, you’re at their whim — and your business could be wiped out (or severely impacted) overnight if Google decided to change their algorithm in a way that discounts your site. This happened to a number of sites when the Panda Update went live.
The morale? Make sure your business is not rooted in someone else’s platform.
Obviously, I’m biased on this since ESM builds custom websites…but you can bet I wouldn’t be in this business if I didn’t believe that businesses and individuals should have professional websites rather than operating entirely on other platforms.