When people say social media marketing helps you in search, what do they mean? Are we doing all this online socializing to simply get links and boost our page rank? The answer is a clear no. Launching and managing a whole social platform is a lot of effort to simply get links. So why are we really doing social media marketing? We're doing it to weave our content into the social fabric of the Web and embed our products, brands, and information into places where people gather, converse, and share. We do it to make our content part of the larger body of information residing on the Web, outside the borders of our Web sites. So that's where search really comes in. By doing this, more of our content pops in search results (text and universal) and promotes our products and services.
Search Results are Information Hub Pages
Google and other search engine results are no longer boring static gateways to other sites. They are our starting point to anything we're seeking or researching in our personal and professional lives. They are information hub pages that bring together a wide range of links, videos, images, products, social streams, ads, news, and other elements into a single view. In other words, they are the customized on-demand home pages for what we are looking for at any given moment. They are transforming into rich, multimedia experiences that deliver anything we need in the form we want to consume it in. So this is where SEO and social media marketing come together. It's not all about links - it's about the distribution of your content and that content appearing in search results.
Digital Assets Optimization and Social Media Marketing
So, while SEO has traditionally been about your site popping in the search engines, social-based digital asset optimization is about getting your content out there, optimizing it for target terms, and having as many mentions and real estate on a results page around a particular topic as you can. Of course, one listing may be from your site, but don't you want to be the subject of, or at least mentioned in, the content of the other listings? How about blog posts? Are you or your products mentioned? In universal search results, is that your product shot, chart, graphic, or video included and above the fold? How about in image results and video results in Google Images and YouTube? How many of the listings belong to you?
Here are a few tips to make sure the content you create is optimized for posting to your site and for social media marketing, like pushing out content via tweets, blog posts, Flickr photo albums, YouTube video posts, blog posts, press releases, and Facebook updates:
Here are seven tips for getting your content out there in a big way:
There's more, but that covers the big stuff. If done right and done consistently, the lines between SEO and social media marketing will start to blur. You'll be covering three bases with one program: site SEO, digital asset optimization, and social media marketing.
This column originally appeared in the March 2010 edition of SES Magazine.
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As founder and CEO of Overdrive, Harry Gold is the architect and conductor behind the company's ROI-driven programs. His primary mission is to create innovative marketing programs based on real-world success and to ensure the marketing and technology practices that drive those successes are continually institutionalized into the culture and methods of the agency. What excites him is the knowledge that Overdrive's collaborative environment has created a company of online media, SEM, and online behavioral experts who drive success for the clients and companies they serve. Overdrive serves a diverse base of B2B and B2C clients that demand a high level of accountability and ROI from their online programs and campaigns.
Harry started his career in 1995 when he founded online marketing firm Interactive Promotions, serving such clients as Microsoft, "The Financial Times," the Hard Rock Cafe, and the City of Boston. Since then, he has been at the forefront of online branding and channel creation, developing successful Web and search engine-based marketing programs for various agencies and Fortune 500 companies.
Harry is a frequent lecturer on SEM and online media for The New England Direct Marketing Association; Ad Club; the University of Massachusetts, Boston; Harvard University; and Boston University.
December 12, 2013
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