In this tutorial you will learn how to use social media marketing for your website’s search engine optimization.
Before we continue, I want to mention that if you’d like to learn SEO right from scratch, please follow the SEO tutorial guide page and move forward from there.
Alternatively, you can use the navigation menu to move to any section of the SEO tutorial you’re interested in.
When business owners and marketing managers contact our agency to enquire about SEO, one of the most frequently asked questions we receive is: “Do you include social media?”.
This question troubles me.
It does so because the vagueness embedded in the question lays bare the fact that the enquirer doesn’t really know what they’re asking.
The online marketing industry has done a great job of persuading the average business owner they need to ‘do’ Social Media to succeed in business.
Heavens to Betsy. This really frustrates me!
Or to be more down with the kids, let me put it another way.
Without understanding how social media applies to your industry and business (if it does at all), using social media as a means of directly attracting sales is quite misleading.
How Social Media Applies to SEO
Let’s get back to basics my friend.
Once and for all I’m going to clear up how on earth social media applies to SEO. In fact, I’m going to lucidly explain how it applies to anything when you’re trying to market a product or service.
To understand it all, we need to compartmentalize social media into 3 distinct cash camps:
• Organic Social Media Marketing
• Paid Social Media Marketing
• Social Media for SEO
Organic Social Media Marketing
Whenever I get asked if our SEO packages “include social media”, whether they realize it or not, the enquirer is talking about organic social media marketing,
Organic social media marketing is the unicorn of social media that you’ll find discussed and touted ad nauseam in various online articles with catchy titles like…
‘10 Ways to Grow Your Business’
‘How Facebook Can Scale Your Company’
‘Does Your Website Have a Social Presence?’
Business.com; Entrepreneur.com; they’ll all littered with them.
So what’s being sold?
Well, it’s the idea that a business develops a social community of loyal followers across various social media channels. Said business then interacts with that community, sharing posts and responding to customer comments.
This then builds brand loyalty, which results in more sales for the business. Does that sound realistic to you? Me neither!
Unless you’re a Goliath brand already, like Apple or Coca Cola; or you have something incredibly exciting and innovative to sell, like Tesla, the idea that you will be able to…
1. Build a large following to your business’s social media pages naturally
2. Effectively sell to this audience
…is absurd (in my humble opinion).
Who the hell ‘likes’ a Los Angeles Steel Contractors’ Facebook page? Who ‘tweets’ on the Twitter profile of an eCommerce store selling camping equipment?
When’s the last time you had your car serviced, and found yourself compulsively reaching for your smartphone to start intertwining your social life with your auto servicing needs? I mean really.
Look. I don’t want to rain on your parade; quite the opposite. I simply want to make sure you’re pulling all your time and resources in the best direction that’s all.
Put simply, unless your product or service lends itself to explosive social media buzz – which 95% of business models don’t – you’ll be wasting your time.
Social media isn’t popular because it connects consumers to producers. It’s popular because it connects friends, family and loved ones.
So please don’t expect your customers to ‘follow’ or ‘friend’ your business because they bought something from you or used your service.
The only way you’re going to get people to ‘like’ your business page is if there’s something in it for them. And more importantly, if there’s something in it for them regularly.
To create an organic following, think of social media as a conduit to offering…
• Discount Codes
• Free Product Tests and Tasters
• Physical Coupons
Go ahead and offer a ‘25% off’ coupon on your product in exchange for a ‘like’. Announce a free prize for 10 lucky followers of your business page.
Things like these are the only way you’re going to see engagement from an organic social media audience. However, don’t think for one second this audience will be interested in your business when you stop offering things that essentially reduce your bottom line profit.
Unless you have a heady mix of exceptional content unavailable anywhere else on the Internet, a tranche of pre-existing loyal followers, and pure luck, get the words ‘business’, ‘social’, and ‘viral’ out your head.
Thanks for understanding. Now, shall we look at the more actionable and positive sides to social media?