Google for the Gram: Using Social Media SEO

Social Media SEO

There’s a good reason the kids are calling this digital space we all love the ‘interwebz’. It is a unique realm where everything is connected, from endless Wikipedia rabbit holes to social media SEO. Yep, it turns out you can use that Facebook page for far more than finding out what your old college friend cooked for dinner last night; you can actually use social media to get more hits from search engines. Ready to learn how? Then grab my hand and let’s delve into the magical world of social media SEO.

What is Social Media Marketing?

Social media marketing is a broad term that encapsulates any use of social media sites to promote a product or drive traffic to a site. Social media SEO is a simple extension of this type of marketing, wherein the postings on social media are used to raise your company’s webpage ranking on major search engines. This can be done in a few ways, such as:

  • Incorporating links into posts which boost SEO
  • Building connections on social media sites which affects relevant search results
  • Making your site/profile optimized for social media searches

Social media SEO is a fantastically efficient way to multitask. It’s kind of like when your daughter tells you she can write a paper while she watches TV, and you learn that it’s actually possible.  It’s the same when you realize how much social helps your brand and SEO, especially when you see that it saves time and money.

How to Use Social Media to Boost Search Engine Traffic

As stated above, social media can boost SEO in a variety of ways. One of the easiest and most obvious methods of social media SEO is optimizing the post itself for search engines. Having a well-crafted post on social media ups the chance of that post being discovered by potential clients when they Google related terms.

Another beautiful little crossover between social media marketing and SEO lies in the fact that social media is itself a type of search engine. More and more people are turning to social media sites when they want a new pair of boots or a sweater for their dog. People want to know what their peers think about potential products, and the human element of social media means that a search on Instagram is a great way to find out if indigo is the right shade for Mr. Waffles.

If you’re going to be using social media marketing, why not capitalize on the SEO side too? Social media will really give you insight into who your audience is and what they’re looking for.

One final way social media is relevant to SEO is that search engines are starting to factor in social media when ranking search results. While Google has said that social media is not a direct factor in ranking, there is plenty of evidence that it indirectly impacts actual ranking factors, and pretty dramatically.

As if that weren’t enough, SEO is a constantly shifting game. Any good SEO marketing strategy will consider the changing nature of the business and adapt, and if trends continue, it is highly likely that social media likes and shares will become direct factors in search engine rankings.

This means that you have a great opportunity to get ahead of the competition by building your social media now. The best part is, even if the social media factors don’t end up being incorporated directly into search algorithms, the work will benefit you in many other ways including helping you:

  • Build your reputation
  • Reach more customers
  • Learn what makes your customers tick
  • Retarget audiences for increased loyalty
  • Sell more products and services

The Takeaway on Social Media SEO

Synergy is everywhere on the internet. This is especially true when it comes to marketing. If you want to maximize on your investments in this area, social media SEO is a great way to go. It’s easy, it’s efficient, and unlike the endlessly streaming clips of store-bought cookie reviews I watched last night, it will make you feel like you’re maximizing productivity. Now go get in on this Google-Social crossover episode.

“It’s Not You, Google. It’s Me.” Do You Really Need SEO?

seo-search-engine-marketing

SEO has become a trendy little topic, hasn’t it? From man-bun-dawning millennials in artisanal coffee shops to three-piece-suit-wearing businesswomen, SEO marketing seems to be on everyone’s mind. In this fast-paced world of internet marketing, it’s easy to get swept up in trends without really knowing why. But, you’re not here to do what’s trendy, you’re here to do what works, and depending on your situation, it might not be ideal for you to try to creep up that Google ranking. Let’s talk about this marketing approach, whether you should go with the flow, and the important things you need to know.

What Is SEO?

SEO, or search engine optimization if you’re feeling fancy, is a method of digital marketing that focuses on getting your website to pop up on the first page when people search for anything related to your products or services. We do this by focusing on a variety of factors like:

  • The coding and design of your website
  • The links between your web pages and others, and
  • Getting people engaged on social media to help us understand search behaviors

Who wouldn’t want to be the first hit on Google? Well, if it means spending a lot of money on SEO services, maybe you.

Is SEO Marketing Right for You?

While it never hurts to come up on the first page of search engines in a vacuum, the reality is, it’s not going to happen by chance. This means that you’ll need to pay a pro to make it happen, or you’ll need to put in a significant amount of your own time optimizing your web pages.

Now, I find economics to be drier than a week old loaf of French bread in a dehydrator, but I do know that opportunity cost is a very real thing. You don’t want to make just any investment, you want to make the best investment, and SEO might not always live up to that standard. Let’s talk about when you might want to go a different route with your time and money.

If you are an inventive company, creating all sorts of new and unique products, you might not want to purchase SEO services. The reason why lies in the fact that people don’t search for things they don’t know they want yet. People have to know about a product before they start searching for it, and as such, new products are often better served through awareness campaigns. Get some buzz going first.  Then, you can transition to optimizing for search engines.

Another reason to reconsider this type of marketing strategy lies in your timing. If you are trying to promote a one-off event in the near future, a frequently changing inventory, or are looking for a fast return, this type of marketing might not be the strategy of choice. SEO is a long-term approach to digital marketing. It’s not a one-size-fits-all process. Every business and audience will be different, so these partnerships need to be with someone you know and trust. Search engine focused marketing is like a nice cheese; it gets better with time. That said, sometimes it’s a cereal-dinner in your pajamas kind of night, and you’re not trying to wait for long-term results. You want something now.  In those cases, skip the search engines.

The Takeaway:

SEO is an incredibly valuable tool, and for many businesses, it’s a fantastic investment. However, marketing isn’t and should not be cookie-cutter, and you should be treated like the unique individual/company you are. Like my mom always says, “You can’t expect to be extraordinary if you simply do what everyone else is doing. Also, are you eating enough? I’m sending more cookies anyway.” That first part is spot on, so don’t be afraid to weigh your options before committing to a search engine focused campaign. What matters is what YOU want and need out of your marketing campaign, not what is trendy. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to find room for seven unnecessary batches of snickerdoodles.