Search engine optimization is not dead. It is alive and well; it has just gone social like nearly everything else. Social media has come to be a dominant force in everyday life, including marketing and business. Attaining SEO success now depends in large part on the social capital of your content. Although keyword research still matters, content writers should focus on creating highly shareable content first and foremost. Every time your content is liked on Facebook, tweeted on Twitter, “+1ed” on Google+ or shared on LinkedIn, it receives a stamp of approval—boosting its reach, increasing website traffic, enhancing SEO, and inciting greater lead generation and conversion.
Google AuthorRank has shaken up inbound marketing and SEO in a big way. Due to AuthorRank, the social media influence and reach of content creators has a major impact on their search rankings. If you are serious about SEO and online marketing, setting up Google Authorship is a must.
Create an ample Google+ profile—featuring your main content topics in your introduction. Get engaged, participate on the social network frequently, share great content often, and establish online relationships with top industry thought leaders to foster your influence and credibility on Google+.
High rates of social sharing let Google know that you are publishing valuable content, which is appraised as share-worthy. Search rankings factor in the social exposure—+1s, likes, retweets, followers, inbound links, etc.—and influence of content and the authors who create it. After creating highly shareable content, you should maximize its social exposure by syndicating it on relevant and respected niche websites, such as Social Media Today and Business 2 Community, and popular social bookmarking sites, including Tumblr, Scoop.it, Digg and Delicious.
To get the ball rolling with social sharing, post your content on at least the big four social networks: Twitter, Google+, Facebook and LinkedIn. Also, make sure you have social icons and social sharing buttons on your blog to encourage content curation. Amplify your social presence with coordinated cross-channel social promotion, which calls for a planned marketing effort across all your social media channels, such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+.
Aim to be consistent in message, while customizing your content for each social media channel. Honoring the unique culture of each social network is a hallmark of native advertising, which can significantly better the social promotion of your content. For instance, LinkedIn updates should not look like tweets jam-packed with hashtags. While tailoring updates for each of your social channels, use a common theme to unite your original content and create a synergy so that Facebook posts, LinkedIn updates and tweets have a greater combined impact than they would if created out of synch.
Utilize email marketing to further amplify the reach of your content. Always send a message announcing new blog content to your email subscribers. Do not include the complete published post; just provide the introduction and a link—bringing them back to your blog to read your full post. Once your subscribers land on your blog, they may remain on your website to explore your product or service offerings.
All the tactics discussed above will be most effective, if you are already publishing highly shareable content. If you are in doubt, check out Viral Content Creation Demystified and How to Create Google-Friendly Content. A complete inbound marketing plan can supercharge your SEO, content creation and social media efforts to help you achieve your business objectives. An inbound approach addresses each facet of your online marketing to create a robust synergy. Inbound marketing can help your content achieve greater social reach, get recognized by Google, and climb the search rankings to help you attain real industry influence and an enviable marketing ROI.