Before giving an answer, it is appropriate to give a nod to these two terms. Optimization of pages and websites (better known as SEO), is the key to online visibility while Social Media Marketing is the branch of marketing that deals with generating visibility on social media, virtual communities and aggregators 2.0.
Before the advent of ranking algorithms, good site positioning consisted of stuffing the site with keywords and thematic links. Over time, more attention was paid to the quality of content rather than quantity. Today it is no longer conceivable to stuff sites with keywords just to climb the SERPs if the content within them is not interesting. All you do is lose credibility. Instead, it's appropriate to use a post on social that links to an article, to achieve greater visibility. It is social today that are the true indicators of content quality.
The answer to the initial question is this: you can no longer think of SEO and social media marketing as two separate strategies. They must necessarily be considered as two sides of the same coin. You can't create content without sharing it on social, nor can you share it on social without having a site that collects all your content.
Integrating SEO and social
Integrating social media management within your digital marketing strategy, however, should not make us think about improving ranking.
Google has clarified several times that the so-called social signals used by its algorithm do not directly refer to the use of popularity on various online channels as a ranking factor, but rather to the combined use of various information found online about the entities that represent our brand or product.
Despite this clarification, there are several ways that social platforms can lend a hand to our site and visit volume.
Why integrate social media into your marketing strategy?
Through an optimal use of social platforms it is possible to achieve immediate objectives: increase the number of users and consumers, make the brand more appealing, obtain information to calibrate the strategy and communication objectives in a way that is aligned with the needs of the target audience.
However, being effectively present on social networks also means having the opportunity to advertise products and promotions, to have a direct channel for customer service, to achieve greater loyalty of people. Compared to other channels, in fact, social networks allow companies and their customers to interact and comment, representing an optimal and different system to obtain feedback and advice.
What are the goals of social media marketing?
The social media marketing strategy should be set up to achieve a number of specific goals, including:
Activities to promote and sell goods and services;
Sharing of website/blog content;
Increased traffic to the website;
Creation of new useful contacts for the leads network.
Improvement of customer satisfaction and customer service;
Realization of interactive relationships with the target audience;
Creation of new backlinks;
Increase of brand reputation & awareness;
Personal branding activities for the improvement of personal visibility.
The main objective of this article is to demonstrate that SEO and social media are two sides of the same coin, that is, they help each other and can provide support to improve the performance of a website, although obviously having different approaches and characteristics. In fact, being able to merge these two strategies can increase the notoriety and authority of our brand.
While conceptually similar, SEO and social media leverage different techniques and dynamics that you need to understand well.
As we know, SEO represents a set of very varied and broad techniques and methods aimed at optimizing a site's performance on search engines and achieving top ranking positions on Google. Social media, on the other hand, can serve to incentivize interactions and trigger behaviors that generate more direct relationships between users and brands, which are often useful in meeting planned business and marketing objectives.
In short, the goal of social media marketing is to connect and create conversations and interactions with users, who can then turn into consumers. When well set up and executed, the work of developing the relationship between brand and audience strengthens the relationship of trust.
Diversifying Website Traffic
Social media can be a great way to give our project an initial boost of traffic and engagement - boosts that can help the site get the attention its content needs to start climbing the keyword rankings more quickly.
In fact, as you can imagine, posting content on our social channels serves not only to increase engagement on these platforms, but also helps drive visitors to the website, increasing its visibility. And this is just one of the positive aspects of an integrated, multichannel communication strategy.
The benefits of multichannel communication
In addition to increasing site visibility and traffic, social can help increase sales and business for any type of company, regardless of size.
The broader goal of SEO is not to generate organic traffic, but to bring relevant traffic to the site in a way that encourages conversions. Through social, we have more information about the types, shapes and tones of voice of content that users like and that create immediate interaction.
In fact, social media can drive more traffic to search-optimized pages, and the visits that come from this channel have positive characteristics for the site, because the user who clicks on the link is predisposed to read and discover, and if we offer engaging and interesting content, we will have the opportunity to increase the stay on the page and reduce the bounce rate, two metrics that Google uses as indicators of value.
Building relationships and getting new links
Social media, as we have seen so far, are not only used to publish interesting content, but you can use them to build strategic relationships, getting in touch with influencers or industry experts who can become important reference points to give greater authority to our content, or even simply offer interesting insights on issues related to our core business to interact with.
These partnerships can lead to more link opportunities than we could do on our own and additional to classic link building strategies: the process of connecting with a relevant audience on social media is important because it can lead to the creation of new links in a natural way.
If the audience interacts with the published content they might share it spontaneously, an element that will provide greater visibility to the pages: as a result, the content will be more likely to be found and read by other people, and at the same time get a boost in terms of credibility, authority and popularity.
Optimize your presence on all social networks
When we talk about social media, we mean all those on which our business is present, none excluded. In fact, it is advisable not to neglect any action or strategy to improve the management of our brand online and to strengthen our brand awareness, the awareness that people have of the brand.
In practical terms, the first step to take on these channels is to claim the properties of the online brand in order to set up a unique, clear and precise communication. By doing this, you will have the opportunity to get to the first page of Google results, curating and managing for example:
1. The homepage of the site and all its other pages.
2. Google My Business account.
3. Facebook/Instagram/Youtube/Pinterest pages.
4. From a user experience point of view, having all these elements correctly increases the trust of people searching for the brand and increases the possibility of conversions.
How to make the best use of social media
From what has been written, it should be clear why it is important and useful to have profiles with up-to-date information and engaging content. However, don't make the mistake of underestimating the use of social media and getting the communication methods wrong, both in terms of content and tone of voice used.
The company profile is not a personal and playful account, but a further showcase of the online brand: it must not be managed in a casual way, but must propose to the target audience and the community textual and multimedia contents that respect our core business values. That is, communication must be integrated, always oriented to the vision and mission that are the distinctive features of the brand, without detaching itself too much even from the communication style used on other channels.
However, it is necessary to point out that each social platform has its own rules and style: on Twitter, brevity and the ability to be direct win, on Facebook, multimedia resources work, and on Instagram, images and videos speak for themselves. What really matters is always being able to make your brand recognized, making it reliable and unique for users, who can become the future customers/consumers of the site.
One mistake that is frequently made is to unlink social accounts and sites; that is, we are present on social but don't report it on web pages, or we don't include the share button for others, or we don't share blog posts on bulletin boards.
In order to exploit the word-of-mouth work that can arise from social networks, we need to make life easier for people: for example, we can set up a solution by default for sharing articles from the site on the various platforms, and in general allow the retrieval of data from the various social networks, checking that all tags are set correctly.
As it is easy to understand, it is preferable to exploit and connect all the information and communication channels in order to develop an effective and complete multi-channel strategy that has the objectives of increasing brand awareness and reputation and, at the same time, increasing site visits and encouraging conversions.
Two strategies that work together to strengthen the site
It's a given now that social media and SEO cooperate; in fact, we shouldn't think of these two strategies as separate worlds. Social media promotion should feed into our SEO strategy, promoting content to multiple audiences and getting as many relevant visits as possible.
Ultimately, applying effective SEO tactics and a reasoned, more productive social media presence should therefore potentially make our site perform better and more profitable.
At Xplore Digital we offer this possibility to integrate, to a good site indexing, the quality of content. Relying on marketing experts who plan a proper web & social media marketing strategy is the only way to get results. For a more personalised approach, do not hesitate to CONTACT US!