Since Social Media networks have been online, SEO strategists have been able to avoid having to deal with their interaction with search engine results. Unfortunately, with the rabid success of these networks in sharing information with a debatable level of authority, search engine algorithms are now starting to include social network postings in the search results.
“It’s becoming evident that tweets are exceptionally powerful, as well as Facebook shares, in the short term and they appear to have an occasional impact in the long term. There appears to be some lasting impact to that social sharing… Google and Bing seem to be treating those more and more like links, as opposed to temporal impact.” — Rand Fishkin, CEO of SEOMoz
What does this mean for SEO strategists? It means that they can no longer avoid the social media landscape. Google, Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines are now quantifying the data from Twitter mentions, Facebook status updates, and other popular networks. As most search engines now have a personalized tracking of how a person searches, specific social mentions of a particular search topic can be incorporated into those search results.
Step One of optimizing the new SEO landscape: open up the information flow. Make sure the websites being optimized have a social presence in some form. This could be as simple as a Twitter account that is set to repost links to any blog updates, or a Facebook page that puts out all of the information. Any availability for others to link to the social aspect of a particular site will be beneficial to any search results. After all, it can’t be in the results if it doesn’t exist.
Step Two is watching the information flow. Countless businesses use social media for the sole purpose of monitoring their brand image. The same principles must be applied to the newly created social presence for your site. This levels out the playing field by offering the opportunity for additional analytics to be applied. Understanding how people interpret, interact with, and share the information of the sites being optimized affords a plethora of unique opportunities.
Step Three is engaging the information flow. In an overall strategy, certain keywords will be targeted for a variety of campaigns. By having access to a social platform where the target market of the site is being engaged in a conversation, the keywords can be derived directly from those with the same mindset of those that would be using search engines to find information.
What is being accomplished is what is being referred to by some as Social Media Optimization. When it comes to a brand’s identity and image, every aspect of their online presence is now important. Where they rank in search results is now merely a foundation for what successful internet marketing should include.
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This post was submitted by Adam Costa.