social media (facebook, twitter, et al) may be good for much more than just sucking up valuable work hours 🙂 as a booster to search or a driver of direct traffic it really can make a difference. I have primariy seen the recommendation sites (reddit etc), facebook and twitter work well in the traffic driving arena. In a more tech field you would want the “slashdot effect” – when your site/article is listed on slashdot and you get so much traffic that your site nearly falls over 🙂
as a media person it amazes me to see how the rules of the game have changed, traditional media’s “rules” have become so entrenched that people often forget why they are doing things in the first place (i.e. for measurement rather than audience enjoyment). online media is exactly the same, you need to work the system (search et al) to drive up your traffic. the complexity is that the system is much harder to fudge (i.e. circulation and readership).
click here to see some very basic suggestions on boosting search traffic via social networking