Digital Marketing is now as important (if not more so) than offline marketing programs and many businesses are struggling to understand and incorporate the various elements of integrated marketing – from paid advertising to SEO (Search Engine Optimization) to Social Media. Make no mistake: digital marketing is here to stay and leading businesses are now jumping onto the social media bandwagon in a huge way. Not only are they using this channel to raise visibility, build relationships and drive sales, they are also tying social media with their SEO efforts to make online marketing strategies as powerful as possible.
There are many perceptions (and misperceptions) of Social Media Marketing so it’s helpful to get a few things straight right away. First, any good digital marketer will tell you that the key to acquiring a good search engine ranking is to target a popular niche market (and associated key words). So when you build your social media program, make sure you have identified the most important and relevant audience for your products and/or services. Nothing can sink your social media campaign faster than acquiring hordes of followers that have absolutely no interest in what you’re offering – so target carefully and build accordingly.
This is where SEO article writing and posting can play a crucial role. By using keyword heavy terms related to your target niche (as well as links), you can drive potential customers and clients to your website. Strong blog entries also help position your company as a subject matter expert and this can help convince potential clients/customers to engage with you. Remember, your goal should be to create a relationship with the user before pushing your services or product at them. Constant promotion is boring and turns people off. You want engagement. One of the great benefits of social media is the potential for interaction so use it.
Most search engines now look for social media interaction more carefully when they index pages. This includes checking how often blogs are updated, whether your site has engaging content and if there is steady interaction with visitors. If you pass on all of these accounts then your website’s position should improve (although comprehensive SEO programs also require additional steps). But the point is – creating useful content and sharing it through social media channels will only help your company in many areas (including SEO).
As mentioned earlier, social media marketing can also increase back links to your site which can also help your SEO efforts enormously. The best way to do this? Blog entries, and lots of them. Writing search engine optimized content for your products or services will help enhance your company’s visibility online and allow more potential customers to find you.
There are lots of ways this can happen. An interesting Twitter or Facebook post can be ‘retweeted’ or forwarded by users who found it worth their while. If you want more and more users to read your ‘words of wisdom’ you can use popular keywords that allows them to first find your articles and then click on your links to share with others.
We often get asked: why/how does Twitter help with SEO? Although Twitter is a social media tool that many use to create community and relationships, it does have an SEO value. For example, Twitter can affect positively your Alexa rankings by sending visitors to your website or blog (through links you include in your tweets). Usage data is a sign of quality for Google and all the other search engines. Driving traffic to your site via Twitter or other social media channels is an SEO advantage businesses cannot afford to miss because their competition is (or soon will be) employing this strategy. Simply put: you don’t want to be left behind.
So when you’re considering the various pieces of an integrated marketing and communications campaign, don’t forget to include social media when developing your SEO strategy. If you do it right, they’ll work together seamlessly to deliver customers (and results).
Written by David Kaufer
David Kaufer is Founding Partner and Chief Dynamic Office in Kaufer DMC. He’s also a huge Oregon Ducks & Microbrew nut, Dad of awesome 9-year-old twin boys, husband, and big Sustainability and Autism advocate.