2012 – The Year of Social Search
We’ve discussed in the past how we expect social signals to influence search results in the near future. In the middle of 2011 Bing integrated Facebook signals as part of its algorithm. Announced yesterday, Google is now counting Google+ as part of their metrics when the user (person searching) is logged in.
With this in mind, there are some very specific things you’ll want to consider as you begin implementing that well thought out marketing plan for 2012:
It’s All About Content
If this is the first article you’ve read about websites, SEO, or social media, one thing you’ll see over and over is that it’s all about content. You must produce content your audience is going to want and, more importantly, want to share.
This content can come in many forms. Many people think of traditional content on a website. Also a the top of mind is usually the content they’d post on a blog or press releases. Fewer, though, would think of video, Facebook statuses, Tweets, Slideshare presentations, or the like.
The point is there are so many opportunities for developing content you need to ensure you’re not getting pigeonholed into one or but also need to be cautious of casting your net so wide you’re being ineffective. Bottom line: you will not survive Internet Marketing 2012 without content.
You Don’t Need a Profile To Be Social
With Facebook, Google+, Twitter and LinkedIn, you don’t have to have an active profile in order to start developing the signals you need in order to rank well in the SERP’s (Search Engine Results Pages). What do you need then? Provide a way for users to share your content.
Social Is Going To Impact You
Papa Johns demonstrated the first full weekend of 2012 how critical Social Media is to your business. If you didn’t hear about it, check out how Papa John’s found itself at the center of national news attention all because of a Tweet.
So what does this case study show us? Even if you choose not to have a profile and engage, your business cannot afford to ignore the social space altogether. If you’re a small mom and pop type of operation, something like Google Alerts will probably be enough for you. However, if you have a large client base, your clients are active in the social sphere, or you are a regional or national brand, you should be leveraging a more proactive social media monitoring strategy.
Knowing What End Is Up
With all the options available, it’s difficult to figure out which one you need to do. Beyond that, it’s even more difficult to learn how to do it well. Whether you simply need to keep an eye on brand reputation or engage a full onslaught social media campaign, you’ll want to partner with a social media strategist who can help you get it done correctly. Contact us at LocalDirective for a free consultation to help determine your needs before you jump in and waste time and money.
If Social Media is something you’ve already decided to do, be sure to join us every month on Facebook for the Social Networking Coffee Hour to explore how to more effectively leverage the power of relationships to build business.