Social media is, without a doubt, here to stay. For years, businesses have been trying to leverage these networks effectively to improve upon or achieve their business objectives. Which social networks matter, and in what way should you look to be utilizing them to help your business?
Google does not directly take Facebook ‘Likes’ or performance into consideration when determining their rankings. However, great content is by nature shareable, and Google definitely recognizes and rewards quality content in their algorithm.
Facebook can often act as a litmus test: If the content does well with your followers on Facebook, chances are the page already has merit and will perform well. If you notice a particular post take off, that’s a good indicator that you may want to create additional content like it or continue with the promotion of said piece.
Being able to target enormous amounts of people in your market is where Facebook truly shines. Advertising on Facebook should not be taken lightly. Facebook exists to collect personal information on its users – that’s what it does. They know what people like, what they share, and the types of people they associate with, and Facebook formulates labels based on this information. As a marketer, I am able to then choose my target demographic very, very accurately to ensure I am getting the best possible return on my investment.
Although Google+ is miles behind Facebook in terms of the number of people who use the service, you shouldn’t ignore the facts:
- Google+ ‘Shared Links’ are followed, which means they pass something called link equity. Simply put, if I write an amazing article and it receives a lot of +1s, Google will take that into consideration for how my page ranks.
- Google+ is already optimized for semantic relevance – Facebook and Twitter are not. This means that something posted on Google+ is treated exactly like a normal blog post. It has all of the elements needed to be considered a true inbound link from a website, and the links will be followed as well.
In the end, you really can’t create a Google+ account, post ten times a day, and hope to see results. Time and effort should be taken to cultivate a following of real people who have the ability to influence others.
Utilizing the +1 button correctly is also important. Even visitors who do not actively manage their own Google+ page will happily press the +1 button – they can’t help themselves. Good content gives visitors the natural compulsion to tell others. These +1 likes turn into inbound links and directly indicate to Google’s algorithm that the content is worth sharing with others.
The biggest mistake Twitter users make is using this social network to broadcast. It’s easy to just retweet what someone else says or share a link to a new post you’ve written. Interacting with people is where Twitter shines.
Rather than just retweeting popular figures or pasting a link to your newest post, you should be showing genuine interest in attracting interaction with others. Use Twitter to showcase the culture of your office. Use it for customer service, getting others to share what they’ve done with you, and publicly show you and your organization are available and accessible.
The 140 character limit forces efficient communication which means you aren’t having to spend time crafting email replies. A quick answer to a question is often all someone needs, and Twitter makes that easy.
Does Social Media Matter?
When used properly, these social networks become business tools with the power to build a brand, provide customer service, build customer loyalty, and improve search engine results.