You’re most likely already aware of the individual importance of both SEO and also social media in any marketing strategy. But do you know how these two strategies work together to create the ultimate SEO campaign?
Last year Google started placing a greater emphasis on social media, especially its own Google+ after the launch of Google Search Plus Your World. Even the Facebook/Bing partnership has fueled the power of social media results in Bing’s SERPs.
Between 75-90% of the top 10 search results on any search engine results page have at least one Facebook like or Twitter tweet. So, how do you get started today to ensure your social media marketing and SEO strategies are aligned to create a successfully integrated online marketing strategy? Here are the three basic steps you need to take:
1. Register your business for social media accounts and build your following
Find which social media platforms are right for your business, and more importantly, for your target market. There are so many available, but after some research you’ll be able to tell which platforms are best for your ideal demographic. Is your product or service visually appealing? Is text information the best way to reach your consumer base? Is your target demographic primarily on one particular platform? You know your business best when it comes to how to reach your followers.
In terms of SEO, a Google+ page is now essential for all businesses. Google Search Plus Your World hit the US earlier in 2012 and it’s only a matter of time until it launches in Australia, making Google+ circles and +1s visible in personalised search results. Google Places is also now integrated in Google search, and just in the past few days Google Places has officially become Google+ Local.
In regards to building your following, it’s simple – the more users you have, the more people will share your content. So build your following to increase your chances of having your content spread across different channels.
2. Write shareable content
Since Google’s latest Penguin algorithm was released in April 2012, content has become a major focus of SEO. Every website needs engaging, quality content – and lots of it! Luckily, this is not only great for SEO but fresh and unique content is exactly what social media users love to share with their own networks. Take this opportunity to make yourself an authority in your industry, and also to add value to your followers and keep people coming back to you for more useful information.
People only share extraordinary content, so publish high quality content that people will be inclined to share naturally. Like humans, Google also loves fresh content. Content keeps your website relevant, so write as much as you can, as often as possible. We recommend a minimum posting of 1-2 posts per week to start off with. A blog or news section on your site is the perfect place for this. If you don’t have a blog, stop reading and create one!
3. Spread that content across your social media channels
Create a call to action on your posts to encourage readers to share your content. Add social sharing buttons on your website and also on each blog post – this is the easiest way for people to share your news. You can also tie your blog to your social media channels so once a blog post is finalized it will automatically push new blog posts.
This is important, not only because social signals are making their way into ranking algorithms, but also that social avenues are becoming a leading way to find and spread information.
So, what’s the benefit to doing all of this?
Social shares now play an increasingly important role in the ranking algorithms for search engines. Original blog content, and also Google+ content, is indexed and displayed in personalised search results. Google is placing more emphasis on its own social network and they are showing no signs of slowing down.
Creating content and sharing that content can also generate links. These are probably not the high authority links that are needed from an SEO perspective, but they will nonetheless create a natural profile for your website. You also never know who your content will reach if you build a big enough following – you could end up reaching very influential people in your industry!