Friday 17 January 2014

How to integrate social media into your online strategy to support SEO

Today we’re going to focus on Social Media and how to best integrate it into your online strategy to support your search engine optimisation (SEO).

The Platforms

Many people ask us, “Which Social Media platforms should I be using?” The answer is that it depends on what you do and what you want to achieve. In this section we will briefly discuss the 6 most widely used social platforms.

LinkedIn: A Social Media tool created to facilitate networking and communication between business people. This is the most popular platform used by B2B marketers.

Facebook: A stable, consistent, conversational platform that invites people to chat, share and become involved in your company and its opinions. It’s a ‘calm’ platform, offering more long term conversations. If you are a B2C company, this is a platform you should be utilising, and it is especially important for retail business to have a presence on Facebook. In fact 90% of B2C companies actively use Facebook.

Twitter: An immediately responsive platform used for short, concise, relevant and powerful messages. This is a fabulous platform where you can reach your customer base, constantly grow your audience, chat back and forth and be accessible. It is a great platform to utilise if your aim is to engage new prospects as this platform is responsible for 82% of B2B Social Media leads.

YouTube: The leading online video platform, owned by Google. 65% of B2C Marketers use video to promote their business. The advantage of good video is that it is a very engaging medium, meaning that it is highly shareable.

Google+: Google’s own version of Facebook, with the purpose of connecting people and making online content easily shareable. This platform is used on average by 40% of businesses, making it the least popular of the platforms we are discussing in this blog post, however, if one of your Social Media goals is to support your SEO then you cannot ignore Google+.

Which platforms are used by B2B marketers?

Now that we know what each of these platforms 'does' we are going to look at how other marketers, in B2B use them . This chart shows the percentage of B2B marketers who use the above social platforms.

The proportions of B2B marketers using each social platform, and the proportion of leads generated from that platform.

Note that the sum of the percentages is well over three hundred percent, this indicates that many are using more than one platform to market their business.

Unsurprisingly LinkedIn is the most used Social Media platform used by marketers but Twitter seems to be the most effective platform for B2B lead generation.

Which platforms are used by B2C marketers?

Now it’s time to turn our attention to B2C Social Media use. 84% of B2C marketers use Social Media as a marketing strategy to engage new customers, increase website traffic raise brand awareness or increase sales.

The proportions of B2C Marketers using each social platform, and the proportion of leads generated from that platform.

Facebook is unarguably the most widely used platform when it comes to B2C companies and it also seems to generate the largest proportion of leads.

How should you use Social Media

1. To promote your content - If you work hard to create fantastic, high quality content such as blog posts, guest articles and videos then you need to get that content in front the largest possible relevant audience. Social Media provides you with the ability to do this.

2. To support your SEO - An active social presence is vital to your search engine rankings. In particular, having (and updating!) a Google+ profile and Google+ business page will aid your SEO because Google favours its own platform.

3. To establish yourself as an expert in your field - Build a relevant following and get involved in discussions.

4. To say interesting things - Back to content again! Everything you say should be interesting and valuable to your audience, otherwise its just more noise in an already very noisy world!

The case for Social Media

Social Media, when used well can create an on-brand ‘buzz’ that will further build your brand and work towards achieving your distinct business objectives.

Legitimate interactions between businesses and customers are hard to fake using Social Media. For this reason Google is placing more focus on Social Media and social sharing to determine how highly and how quickly a website should rank in Google search results.

Google gives more weight (and therefore higher rankings in search results) to SEO-type activities that are harder to create. For example, 30 seconds spent creating a tweet on Twitter is not great in Google’s eyes. However, a news article on a website that is shared 100 times between visitors, that’s also posted to Twitter and Facebook and which is re-tweeted by your followers is excellent.

These results highlight the growing expectation, in the eyes of customers and Google, of businesses to have an active social presence.

Social Media Today

Wednesday 1 January 2014

Happy New Year!

Here's wishing everyone a Happy and Prosperous New Year from the team at angelfysh!