Social media has long been something that companies know they need to get into to help develop their brand online, but since Google is constantly reworking its search algorithms, using social media is not really an option anymore.
It's pretty much required.
Social Media, Content Marketing, and SEO
These three important concepts are becoming more and more integrated every day. This makes sense because social media has always been way more effective for building a brand than simply using SEO tactics. How much time are the people actually spending on your website after they find it in a search? Larry Kim from WordStream found that people who found his blog would stay for about 94 seconds on average and then 80% of those visitors would never come back.
SEO is all about exposure, but social media can form deeper connections than that.
The best kind of social media strategy is one that encourages engagement, and engagement fosters loyalty and trust in a brand. Thanks to the direction that everything is currently headed in now, social media engagement can now also bring you better SEO.
Building Links Takes Time and Effort
Link building still has its advantages, but traditional outreach campaigns where you email bloggers or pay for listings take a lot of time. So does searching out relevant subjects on other people's blogs and leaving comments on them. (You've probably noticed, but commenting on blogs has been steadily decreasing for a while now because the comments are now mostly happening on the social networks where the blog content has been shared.)
Google and other search engines take social media sharing seriously. Brian Honigman wrote about the real-time advantage that social media has over traditional link building efforts best on the SumAll blog:
The more links a page on your website has, the quicker the search engines index this content in the rankings. Since social media can help influence the amount of links a piece of web content receives in a shorter period of time, it can often speed up the process of indexation of the content in search engines.
Content that has been extensively tweeted about can cut indexation time by 50%, while reducing the time it takes Googlebot to find your content from 2 hours to 2 seconds. The speed at which your content is indexed is affected by many factors such as how many people tweeted the content, the influence of the people who tweeted the content, and the time frame in which this content was shared.
Content Promotion Through Elbow Grease and Social Media is Even Better
The reason that the social engagement and sharing model is so attractive is that not every company has the time or resources or is even positioned correctly to pull of a cohesive, detailed content promotion strategy. But when I discovered Larry Kim's blog, he had so many great ideas for content promotion - all working towards a common goal - that I'd be remiss not to mention them and embed his new PubCon 2014 slidedeck below.
Larry used Twitter for pitching, created visual assets and leveraged Pinterest, used Sponsored Tweets on Twitter and Sponsored Posts on Facebook, remarketed on the Google Display Network, repurposed and syndicated blog content, and targeted International press, radio, and TV. Not bad for a comprehensive strategy. All of this hard work built Larry's status as an influencer, and social media amplified his content every step of the way.
How have you been using social media to amplify your content marketing?