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The SEO and Social Media Mix

My background is SEO, I am not a social genius nor do I profess to be, but I have to admit the strong impact social media can have on search engine optimisation.

In today’s climate marketers are been pushed more and more to increase performance on fewer resources, this is exactly why more companies are turning towards SEO and social media.

These two elements of online promotion are powerful, however it would be a mistake to think you can use one and ignore the other. You see in my mind there are strong reasons to combine the two in order to push forward your online promotion.

What I really wanted to get across in this post was, how having a well thought out social strategy can boost your search engine optimisation efforts. Rand at SEOmoz posted recently about social media marketing being time consuming and lacking in ROI. This maybe true, in fact up until 12 months ago I was firmly of this opinion, that social media marketing, simply did not warrant my attention as social traffic was not profitable. I have changed my mind since and seen the advantages of social marketing on my blog :)

Where The Two Merge

Search Engine Optimisation Social Media Marketing
- Keyword Research - Audience ID
- Competition Analysis - Define Objectives
- Implementation - Strategy
- Decide Tactics - Decide Tactics

Keyword Research & Audience ID
When it comes to SEO one of the first steps you take is performing keyword research, this normally involves the use of a keyword tool like Google and your own brain!! The idea is to find a compromise between getting the right amount of traffic and the right sort of traffic. This requires you to think a little like a buyer, rather than the expert.

Likewise when it comes to social media there is no point becoming involved in social media groups that have little interest in your industry or product. Even if your simply looking to build credibility your only going to do that in a social circle that is an authority on your topic.

Competition Analysis and Defining Objectives
Competition analysis, as far as I am concerned is one of the most important aspects of SEO. It let’s you look into your chosen keywords to see a)When your likely to rank and B)If the competition is closely aligned with what you have to sell. If the competition for your keywords are not relevant to your product/service then it may be time to start thinking about different keywords. Competition analysis also let’s you assess your objectives by helping you realise timescales for your target search traffic.

If your into to social media simply for fun, which many are, defining objectives is not important. If you have a business your trying to build you need to get clear on what your social media efforts are going to bring to the table. (You may simply want to boost your backlink generation :) )

Implementationn and Strategy

In SEO terms implementation is self explanatory, your using all your rich research to structure and optimise your site. You need to compete so your on page efforts have to trump your rivals, once you have done this start worrying about building those links.

When it comes to social media marketing there are also no real secrets, your main strategy will be creating quality content (this will also come into your SEO strategy or implementation). This content does not only need to be good quality but it must also aim to encourage user participation. (If you don’t have the old ADDTHIS button yet, now might be a good time) Also within your content, express your interest in your readers, encourage them to leave feedback, comments and to share things they like.

Decide Tactics

OK you have everything together, your site is built, your pages are optimised, you have created ways for users to interact and contribute, now what. This is where SEO really meets Social Media.

The content you are producing is going to be optimised or as I like to put it “keyword focused”. You are going to want that content to be shared all over the web right, so make sure that your always on topic, every social circle you become involved with must know exactly what your about.

This is particularly helpful for new sites, ranking your own pages will be difficult but ranking a page on Digg is much easier. Choose your mediums wisely and the content you push out there, SEO alone will take time to rank and the rewards will be limited, social media alone would be like driving a car with no steering wheel, sure you will get traffic but is it coming from where you want? Are you directing your content towards the right people. Using SEO and Social media marketing together can bring about great results.

Wrapping Up

OK OK, so here is how social media helps SEO and why you are missing out if you are not implementing them together.

- There is no better way to get your content out there, if you create quality content this is going to provide you with quality links. These links are 100% natural, the ones Google likes best. These new links will be harder to find without social marketing and getting them will only have a positive impact on your rankings.

- Social media is a great way to manage your or your companies reputation. It allows you to get people out there talking about you or your company. You can use it as a platform to display your expertise or product, to show what people will get by visiting your site. We all know the emphasis that has been placed on brands recently, what better way is there to build one?

- I touched on this earlier, but will mention it again. If your site is new your going to struggle to rank at first. Use your keyword research to rank some social pages, this will drive traffic via search engines without even ranking your own site. It doesn’t matter if your using videos, twitter, digg whatever….make sure you are using
your keyword research.

I am far from a social media expert but these are definitely some of the areas I have seen real results in so far. For me one of the best aspects of social marketing is building relationships, social media allows you to mix with people who are willing to open windows that SEO alone cannot.

Thanks to all those who enjoy reading SEO Wizz, and those who have referred people here.

Tim

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Author: Tim (255 Articles)

is the owner and editor of SEO wizz and has been involved in the search engine marketing industry for over 9 years. He has worked with multiple businesses across many verticals, creating and implementing search marketing strategies for companies in the UK, US and across Europe. Tim is also the Director of Search at Branded3, a Digital Marketing & SEO Agency based in the UK.

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