Social networks have become an uphill battle for marketers. They're literally addictive to consumers, who now spend 40+ minutes on social media every day.

But for marketers, who now face a sea of competing content and little to no unpaid reach, social networks are simply no longer the most effective way to reach those consumers.

So a growing number of marketers are beginning to rethink social networks, and many are driving traffic to their own websites and mobile apps instead.

Bringing your audience home has huge advantages. Consumers who want to stay in touch with your brand are nearly three times more likely to visit your website than to engage with you on Facebook. And the more time a consumer spends on your properties—whether shopping, discovering, or researching products—translates into a longer, stronger relationship between that consumer and your brand, according to a study from Kantar Media.

So how do you make your own properties as captivating as a social network? Here are four ways they do it, and how you can, too...

1. Content fuels everything

The top reason consumers visit social networks is to find great content, especially stuff that's either entertaining or informative, a study by Millward Brown and Tumblr found. And, from brands, consumers want news, product offers, and entertainment, a study from Ogilvy found.

So make your website a consumer destination for content—not just about your brand but about anything relevant to your audience. You don't have to write it all yourself. Supplement your original content with curated content from experts and customers.

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image of Jordan Kretchmer

Jordan Kretchmer is the founder and CEO of Livefyre, a real-time content marketing platform used by global media companies and brands to engage consumers via real-time content, conversation, and social curation.

Twitter: @jkretch

Linkedin: Jordan Kretchmer