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4 Social Media Myths You Need to Bust

 

Social-Media-Myths

 

Social Media is Not a Serious Thing

Many so-called serious marketers look at social media as a casual platform for youngsters and less popular brands. Little do they realize that countless brands are making a killing on the social space. Even the B2B businesses have hopped on to the social bandwagon. In fact, social has become a way of life for many online marketers. It has metamorphosed into a powerful and indispensable channel for lead generation and customer service. So it’s less wonder that more and more businesses are investing more and more in this ever green medium. Last but not the least, it’s created a brand new crop of professionals who swear by social and make a living with it.

 

Social ROI can’t be Measured

This is a prevalent misconception. Many uninitiated marketers maintain that social is just not their cup of tea, thanks to its lack of measurability. But the reality is different. Return on investment from social is expressly measurable. But it depends on how you go about doing things. If you are certain about why something needs to be shared or measured, there are no two ways about it.  All you need to do is focus on tracking social URLs and conversions with a social media tool of your choice. If your objective is visibility, you would obviously look at metrics like shares, retweets and plus ones. But if your focus is on sheer conversions, then you certainly need to set up a conversion tracking mechanism. What’s more, competitive benchmarking is something that cannot be overlooked since it gives a sense of direction.

 

Too Much Sharing is Not Too Good

Social is all about sharing. Successful social media marketers are the ones who actually share frequently, thoughtfully and honestly. Though too much is not too good, anything that is actually useful to followers will be certainly well received. The challenge is knowing why, what, how and when to share. If the social media activity has a definite purpose, the anticipated results should follow eventually. Another important aspect that deserves special mention is the knowledge of the channels used to share the content. Be it a personal experience or business promotion campaign, a social media marketer always needs to master the functionalities of the channels used. Also, the person has to be aware of where the shared content goes and what happens to it. So the question of ‘how much is too much’ does not arise.
 

Negative Comments Should be Ignored

Surprisingly, disgruntled and skeptical customers aren’t really as serious as what they appear to be. All it takes is a simple ‘sorry’ to pacify them! It’s just that they want to vent their anger at the brand that failed to meet their expectations. It doesn’t always mean that the brand in question is inferior. Social media managers who ignore negative comments are actually shooing away customers who have been acquired after spending loads of money and lots of effort. Research has shown that a number of dissatisfied customers have returned after their issues have been resolved satisfactorily and quickly via social media. In fact, some of them become even more loyal to the brand.  Social is certainly a great new way to connect with customers. Experiences and examples have shown that customer complaints are actually opportunities to deepen engagements. 

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August 21st, 2014 by admin

6 Niches, 18 Forums – Begin Your Marketing Today

Forums are a GREAT place to build a good reputation and to siphon traffic from. Please notice that we said “build a good reputation”; spamming will give you a bad one – don’t do it!

Forums for Niches

Follow the rules, make good contributions and the forum members will want to read more of what you read both on and off the forum. Don’t forget to have a link to your website if the forum rules allow it!

Weight Loss

People are getting fatter and smarter. They are aware that they need to get rid of the fat; some of them for aesthetic reasons and others for health reasons. They are willing to pay for information, products or services that could help them lose weight. This makes the weight loss niche a winner!

Popular Forums in the Weight Loss Niche:

FitDay

http://www.fitday.com/fitness/forums/

Weight-Loss Fitness

http://weight-loss.fitness.com/forum.php

3 Fat Chicks On A Diet

http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/

Muscle Building

Muscle building keeps growing in popularity. People want to gain muscle to look like their favorite Hollywood celebrity or bodybuilder. These people are interested in workouts, dieting plans, supplements, equipment & accessories and more, making muscle building a great niche to get into. The top forums where muscle building enthusiasts like surfing are listed below.

Popular forums in the muscle building niche:

Bodybuilding.com Forum

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/

Muscle & Strength Forum

http://www.muscleandstrength.com/forum/forum.php

EliteFitness.com Forum

http://www.elitefitness.com/forum/

Seduction/Pickup

We are hard-wired to mate (most of us are…!). Some people want to have a smoother game; they are willing to learn…and purchase products that can help them get there! They also hang out on various pickup forums where they exchange tips and field reports. If that’s a niche that interests you, then have a look at these high-traffic forums where you can share your best tips.

Don’t forget to also respond to questions or help!

Popular forums in the seduction/pickup niche:

MPUAForum.com

http://www.pick-up-artist-forum.com/

Attraction Forums

http://www.theattractionforums.com/forum.php

Sedfast

http://www.pua-zone.com/

Love & Relationships

This niche is slightly completely different from the above (pickup). It’s the next level; when you’ve already got the girl or the guy. Relationships aren’t always easy. Marriage. Separation. Divorce. Some people can’t do it on their own. Those who can afford professional counseling go for it. Those who can’t, rely on cheaper alternatives in the form of books, ebooks and mp3s. They also spend quite some time on relationship message boards.

If you have (or can make) a product that could help these people, then check out the forums where they hang out in.

Popular forums in the love & relationships niche:

Love Forum

http://www.loveforum.net/forum.php

Relationship Forums

http://www.relationship-forums.com/

AskMen Love & Relationships Forum

http://boards.askmen.com/forumdisplay.php?41-Love-Relationships

Parenting

A lot of people are clueless when it comes to how to handle a baby or how to deal with kids issues. Some are them are actually pretty good, but want to be even better parents. People are spending more and more on their kids. Parenting is a niche that’s here to stay as long as people keep having kids (so it’s going to be here for quite some time…).

Popular forums in the parenting niche:

Parenting.com Community

http://forums.parenting.com/

JustMommies Message Boards

http://www.justmommies.com/forums/

Foster Parents Forum

http://www.fosterparents.com/fpgeneral/viewforum.php?f=1

Forex

High-risk. High-energy. Big money (to be made or lost in seconds). Some people have no clue on how it all works, but are very willing to learn due to the “cool” element of it, as well as the success stories that emerge from the Foreign Exchange market.

If you have some knowledge you could share (or maybe you have a banker friend who does?), this could be a niche that you could get into and be a “beginners savior”.

Popular forums in the forex niche:

BabyPips.com Forex Forum

http://forums.babypips.com/

Forex Factory

http://www.forexfactory.com/forum.php

DailyFX Forum

http://forexforums.dailyfx.com/forum/

Forum Marketing

Again, there is a good way, and a wrong way of doing it. Provide genuine value and follow the rules and your reputation and followers will just be a ‘by-product’.

Being a power member (a reputable member) is what will bring you the followers, signups and sales in the long run and eventually increase the reach and impact of your business.

Being too spammy and promotional will do nothing but ruin your reputation and get you banned.

Bonus Tip:

I would suggest creating a landing page targeting these specific forum members to increase conversions when they do visit your site.

Consider building the landing page with a similar ‘feel’ as the forum – same color schemes, fonts, page width for example.

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June 20th, 2013 by admin

How to Write Effective Facebook Updates

Facebook, it’s where the individual wants to see and be seen. There’s no denying that Facebook is the largest and most popular social media platform on the internet. It’s everywhere; on your childrens’ desktop at home, on your coworkers computers in the office, on the stranger’s iPhone in the subway, on the lady’s laptop at Star Bucks, all over the globe and in places you didn’t even know had internet connections.

 

 

One of the most common activities on Facebook would have to be posts which users update from time to time, sometimes daily, sometimes every other day, others weekly, and for the Facebook addict you can expect a new wall post every hour. But not all posts are read by friends and family.

Some posts can easily get lost in the hundreds of updates that flood user’s newsfeeds, while others are simply just uninteresting for people to read. If you have something important to state and want to make sure that people see it, then you better learn how to create Facebook posts with depth and eye catching factors that literally scream “Hey! Look at me!”

 

Driving Traffic with Facebook Posts

dricing traffic through facebookThere are many reasons why Facebook users update their posts and sometimes those reasons are connected with other online ventures such as websites, blogs and videos. If you have a website that sells services, a blog that promotes products or YouTube videos that you’d like to increase views on then Facebook is just one of the ways you can drive traffic to your site. That traffic may eventually turn into a sale, a lead, or a view and all you had to do was update your Facebook status.

Many online business owners use Facebook posts as a powerful tool for marketing their many services and products. The likelihood of someone clicking your post link is usually higher than them clicking a sidebar advertisement with the subject matter. Not only is it an effective way to get traffic to your sites, but it’s also completely free!

 

Promotion with Facebook Posts promoting on facebook

When it comes to drawing attention to an up and coming event, celebration or party, there’s nothing like a good ole’ Facebook post to alert all of your online friends and family. It’s a great way to get the word out and encourage attendance to your event. This can include personal celebrations like birthdays, anniversaries or holiday parties as well as organizational gatherings like seminars, book signing, Tupperware parties, and the like.

These days, traditional mailed-out invitations are becoming more elusive and many people are turning to the internet and social media platforms like Facebook to promote their events. Facebook even lets you create your event on your account with all the details, invite the people you want to come via your friends list, and track potential attendance through your friend’s responses. As the date of the event draws near, you can send a quick and friendly reminder to everyone with a Facebook post. This way sure does beat mailing out dozens of invitations and making phone calls to confirm attendance.  

 

Tips on Writing Effective Facebook Posts

writing a facebook postAs you can see, updating your status and making posts on your Facebook account can be used for more than just pure entertainment and venting purposes. And to make certain that your post doesn’t get overlooked and remains visible in people’s newsfeeds, there are strategies you can apply to your Facebook post to make them stand out, get likes, and engage comments. Follow these simple tips on how to write effective Facebook updates and posts.

  • Post during a certain time of the day. This may or may not work for you depending on whether your target audience is in the same time zone as you are. Nonetheless, statistics have shown that posts made between 8pm and 7am receives a higher percentage of user interaction (are you sure? 8pm to 7am).
  • Keep posts short and straight to the point. It’s recommended that posts with 80 characters or less are more apt to being read by friends than posts that are structured in paragraphs and appear to be a mini novel. Not everyone has the time or the patience to read your “life story”, even if it is promoting a brand new car give-away.
  • Asking questions in your post will often prompt responses from other users. Questions with a multiple choice usually attract higher response rates, e.g. “Which place serves the better burgers, In-n-Out or Burger King?”
  • If you’re promoting another website, always add a link for the convenience of the users. Unfortunately laziness can be a factor and if you provide a link for people to easily click versus the URL, you’re sure to get more visitors.
  • Include a relevant and eye-catching image along with your Facebook post. Sometimes words aren’t enough and people need a visual to further convince them to take action.
  • To reach even a larger audience, tag friends in your posts so that they and their friends will be able to see it. But make it as relevant as possible; otherwise it’d be odd to mention your friends in a post about baby clothes when all of them are single and childless.

Follow these tips and you’re sure to engage many of your friends online. Whether you’re trying to promote a site, drive traffic with a link, or just get some attention, writing an effective Facebook post will help you achieve that goal.

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November 8th, 2012 by admin

Brand Monitoring Tips For Social Media That Will Make Your Operation Cost-Effective

Now that companies are beginning to settle into the fact that social media is here to stay, some are starting to move past the introductory phase and really get into the meat of the marketing.  There are many detailed strategies which you can implement on social media once you understand how, and now that we’ve reached this stage, it’s smartfor you to take a look at how we can simplify this process.

 

Social Media Marketing Strategy

 

In order to do this, we must first look at just what it takes to measure our successes in social media so that we may readjust and implement new strategies that aren’t doing so well on the fly.  And it just so happens that this is the part that so many companies struggle with: collecting the data that’s out there for a proper analysis.  To get started with this, the primary component of a marketing analysis on social media is comprised of comprehending the relationships between your brand and your target audience and guiding this relationship’s growth.

 

The reason so many struggle here is because they don’t know that there are social media toolswhich are built primarily for these types of analytics, so even if you have the desire and the time, youmay not know where to begin.  Here are some tips that break it down into easy-to-follow steps so that you can start to get a grasp of your brand’s social relationship to its customers.

 

1—Monitor Social Media Data

Monitor Social Media DataUsing monitoring data statistics from social media allows you to comprehend all the talk that is going on about your brand on channels which you don’t control.  For example, talk happens on social media every day, it’d be useless to monitor it all.  But with monitoring data tools for social media, you’re able to keep an ear to the ground about the conversations people are having online which are related to your brand. 

 

Then, you can take this data to analyze both the engagement type and individual type who are talking about you, further sharpening your target audience.  By understanding the demographics better, you can hone in on them, making your marketing more cost efficient and effective.

 

2—Facebook API Facebook API

Facebook Insights brings you some great information that is very useful, but it’s not enough when it comes to understanding how your brand relates with people.  For that, you have to go to the individual analysis provided by Graph API which allows you to access and store all the information about your brand’s current demographics.  From here, you can build a database that monitors your audience’s reactions and engagements, charting them alongside campaigns to see which are more or less successful than others.   Plus, you will gain a firmer grasp of what Facebook relationships your brand has built on an individual level, rather than just the aggregate metrics on Insights.

 

3—Twitter API

Twitter APIIn the same vein, Twitter API allows you to build and store a database that allows you to instantly refer back to when you first start monitoring it.  The metrics you store will allow you to access them and compare your current engagements with previous ones and measure their successes and failures against each other.  Here, you’ll get valuable insights into what works and what doesn’t for your particular audience on Twitter; for each company it’s a little different.

 

Measuring re-tweets, follows and how many re-tweets are from followers and non-followers, you can see how to draw new leads in, who your current leads are and what are the best marketing strategies for the two groups, both separately and together.  Once again, this increases your knowledge about your target audience, allowing you to further hone in on them and become increasingly cost-effective.

 

4—Putting It All Together Putting It All Together

Finally, making a meta-study of these three sources will allow you to compare and adjust your current campaigns against previous ones, streamlining costs and optimizing efficacy.  When you can do this, you’ve finally started to take the social media bull by its horns.  Using this valuable set of data, you can begin to profile the types of individuals you need to cater to, finding an all-inclusive view of just what you’re dealing with when it comes to your target audience.

 

From there, the next steps are to prioritize, cultivate and build relationships with each category of individuals, eventually integrating them into your CRM and email systems to get the whole picture.  Integration may not be the easiest thing to pull off, but when you do, the social media engine purrs like a kitten.

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October 8th, 2012 by admin

Social Engagement Isn’t Everything: 5 Other Things to Focus On

When you talk to people about their Facebook pages, you’ll often hear people all talking about the same thing: Likes, likes and more likes. Yes, having likes is important. Yes, getting a high level of page engagement is important. But it’s far from the end all be all of Facebook. There are many factors that are more important than list engagement. Here are five of them.

 

Facebook Engagement Tips

 

#1 – Segmenting Your List

Segmenting Your ListsIf you’re saying the same thing to everyone, chances are your message isn’t going to hit home with a lot of your audience. Instead, learn to segment your lists.

First, you can segment by language and geography. If you’re targeting different parts of the world or have followers across different language groups, make sure you make full use of this feature.

You can also segment your friends into different lists and share specific content with specific people.

 

#2 – Being on the Right Social Network(s) Online Social Networking

People often default to one of the big two social networks: Facebook or Twitter. But these two networks aren’t necessarily the right networks to be on.

If you’re targeting artists, a much better social network to be on might be DeviantArt. If you’re targeting CEOs and high level executives, a much better network to be on might be LinkedIn. So on and so forth.

Make sure you pick the social network that your users are actually on. Often time’s small industries and niches will have their own smaller social networks. Make sure you get on those social networks, not just the big ones.

 

#3 – Keep an Eye on Your Virality

Viral MarketingYour virality stats tell you what percentage of your guests like your content enough to take an action that causes your story to be reposted on their wall. This includes liking your post, commenting on your post or sharing your post.

Whenever someone does one of those three actions, your story is replicated on their wall. Your virality stats show you how often that happens. The higher your virality, the more people are passing around your content.

Look for patterns in virality. Do certain days of the week tend to work better? Do certain kinds of topics? Do certain kinds of media – pictures, videos, etc – Tend to work better?

Get in the habit of looking at your stats and adjusting your posting habits to what your customers want.

 

#4 – Is Your Content Emotionally Share-Worthy? Create share worthy content

Most companies are pretty good at coming up with content that’s share worthy from an informational perspective. How to content, tips, instructional videos, walkthroughs, discounts and so on are pretty common on the social sphere.

What isn’t common and what could really set you apart is content that’s share worthy from an emotional perspective.

Does your content get people to laugh? Or get riled up? Or make people feel special? Does it surprise them? Does it make them feel like you care about them?

Good content isn’t just about sharing good information. It’s also about hitting emotional triggers and making your content emotionally share worthy.

 

#5 – A Good Administration System

Administration SystemFinally, you need a good system for administering your Facebook page. This involves a few different things.

First, automation. Do you have the right tools to make administering your page as easy as possible? Use tools that allow you to schedule posts so you can do your posts in batches.

Next, you need to have clear assignment of administrative duties. Who’s in charge of updating the page? Who’s in charge of responding to customer comments?

Ideally, you should have just one or two people managing a page. You don’t want conflicting voices or conflicting opinions on your page. Other people who want something posted should contact the primary administrator(s) to have things posted, rather than have admin access to do it themselves.

Finally, you should have a system for monitoring your social media. You should have alerts setup for common brand keywords. If a PR emergency ever arises, or if a customer starts to complain about your brand, you should know about it immediately and be able to respond quickly.

These five things are all more important than the amount of likes or the level of engagement you get on your page. Engagement isn’t everything – The way you manage your page can make a big, big difference.

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September 17th, 2012 by admin

How to Build an Effective Content Marketing Strategy

Using content marketing to promote your business requires focused, targeted text. Your online promotional material can show your readers that you are an industry leader when it comes to knowing and understanding your subject material. There are steps you can take to make the most out of a marketing strategy to create an effective promotional campaign. If you focus on growing your audience, your content can pay for itself with new clients and broad readership reach that could go beyond a local market.

Content Marketing Strategy

Basic Content Marketing Strategy

 

Offer Readers Expert Information
 

Find what angle of your industry you can excel in when it comes to disseminating information. If you make exercise equipment, for example, you may want to offer the latest in exercise research or tips for a basic workout program with trainers as blog contributors. The more you can speak as a voice of authority on specific content, the more people may be attracted to your content and marketing. 

 

Use High-Quality Content
 

Incorrect or inadequate content on your site can leave readers feeling that your company is not professional. Hire or outsource writers that can convey your information in a well-written format. This not only will give you a lift in terms of quality content, but also will free you and your staff to focus on the overall content strategy and related assignments for the writers.

 

Collaborate with Your Writers
 

Keep the feedback channels open with your writing team. Make sure you look at the content that is representing your business. Offer words of encouragement and any suggestions if you want to take the entries in a different direction. Clear, concise directions to the writers can make a big difference in a marketing project’s outcome.
 

More Content Marketing Tips

 

Offer Training for the Writers
 

If you want to accomplish effective marketing, your writers need to understand the difference in writing for the Web vs. other types of writing. You may want to lead in-house training with plenty of examples for the writers to see and learn appropriate style. You may even want to put together your own style manual, particularly if there are industry references specific to your business that could boost the authoritative nature of your site’s articles.

 

Emphasizing SEO and Keyword vs. Content Distinctions
 

As part of the training, you may want to spend some time discussing your SEO strategy along with keyword vs. content details. You may have specific metrics that are part of your SEO formula, which can help give the writers guidelines. And, while a keyword strategy is important, you may want to stress the value of detailed, accurate content on your site as you work with your writing team.

Create a Content Marketing Plan

 

Use a Content Calendar
 

A content calendar can keep you and your writing staff on track for different promotions through the year that can tie in with blog pieces. You may have sales at specific times of the year or an annual event such as a new-product launch. The calendar can keep everyone’s schedule in line with yours so that the writers can meet any increase in workload.

 

Review Site Traffic Statistics
 

Knowing more about your audience can help your staff refine your marketing to maximize reaching as many people as possible. You may discover that certain times of the day are best for posting to your site for local audience reaction. You also may dig deeper to see what types of mobile devices your readers prefer to use. This can help you customize your site and readability depending on the most popular devices. Combine this knowledge with traffic statistics, and you may soon have a powerful combination of information to create an effective target-market plan.

 

Putting Your Plan in Motion
 

An effective content marketing strategy includes several key components. You will want to build a strong writing team, offer training on key elements along with goals for content, and arrange for a calendar to keep track of promotions. As your audience grows, you can review site traffic and obtain any readership metrics to help further refine your strategy as the content builds an audience. Your promotions can take a life of their own with a smart plan in place as a guiding force.

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September 4th, 2012 by admin

Keyword Rich Domains: Do They Still Matter?

Keyword rich domains

Keyword rich domain names have long been a source of debate in the SEO community. Just a few years ago, having the exact match keyword for a search term virtually guaranteed that you’d dominate the rankings. Keyword rich domains fetched incredibly high prices on the domain name market, because people knew they would easily translate into rankings and into money.

 

Then Google clamped down on keyword rich domains. Google (rightly) reasoned that just because someone was able to pick up the exact match domain for a search term did not necessarily mean that they were the best resource. Google devalued the way they looked at keyword rich domains and many of their rankings dropped.

 

Then more recently came the Panda and Penguin updates, both of which heavily clamped down on web spam. Because many of these keyword rich domains used spammy techniques or spammy content to get ranked, a huge number of them dropped right off the front page.

 

So do keyword rich domains still matter? Do they still give you an edge in the search engines, or have they completely lost their effectiveness? The answer is clear: They still matter. A lot.

 

Matt Cutts: “Diminished” But Still Carries Weight

 

Matt Cutts, Google’s head of web spam has already made a public statement about these keyword rich domains. Cutts’ statement basically said that they’ve diminished the power that keyword rich domains have in search engine rankings, but that they still carry some weight.

 

This makes a lot of sense. A lot of legitimate brands use exact match domains. Punishing these brands, which are extremely useful resources, would be counter productive to Google’s mission of trying to bring the best search results.

 

Exact match domains will most likely always carry some extra weight. In Google’s eyes, it’s just slightly diminished.

 

But Wait! There’s More …

 

But that’s not all there is to the story.

 

When people talk about the advantage of exact match domains, they think first of the algorithm edge that the domain has. But that’s not its only advantage.

 

Exact match domains also tend to get higher click through rates. There are two reasons for this.

 

First, people associate exact match domains with trust. If you typed in “eliminate back pain” and saw “eliminatebackpain.com”, there’s a very good chance you’d click on it. It’s not because you recognize a brand, but because your brain automatically assumes the exact match domain is credible.

 

Second, the exact match domain will be bolded in its entirety when someone conducts a search. This makes the listing more eye catching and gets more clickthroughs.

 

Though nobody can tell exactly how much of Google’s ranking algorithm depends on CTR, there’s little debate that it does play a significant role. In other words, if you have an exact match domain, you’re going to get more clicks because of a high CTR. That high CTR can then lead you to higher rankings, which will generate more clicks for you still.

 

This is why the exact match domain and the keyword rich domain are never going to fully die down. Yes, there’s an algorithmic advantage – But there’s also a psychological advantage.

 

“But My Traffic Dropped After Panda / Penguin”

 

What if you were one of the many thousands of webmasters who saw their site drop off the front page after the Panda or Penguin update? Why did this happen to you and what can you do about it?

 

Most likely the reason your ranking dropped wasn’t because of your domain. Instead, you got dropped because you had too many unnatural links coming in or your website appeared to be using the main keyword too many times.

 

The latter is a common problem with exact match domains. Since your domain is the keyword, you’re going to end up saying your keyword a lot of times in your text. That could look unnatural to Google.

 

The answer to this problem is to re-do your linking strategy from scratch. Get more authentic, natural links and re-do the text on your site so it doesn’t look like you’re keyword stuffing. Then either wait for your rankings to improve, or submit a reconsideration request.

 

Keyword rich domains used to be the end all be all in SEO. Today, they’re not as powerful, but they still hold a lot of influence. The power of keyword rich domains has not gone away and likely never will.

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August 10th, 2012 by admin

Why Google+ Matters and Where it Fits in Your Social Strategy

 

Google+ has over 90 million users. While some marketers consider Google+ small or inconsequential, marketers at the top of their game know that’s not the case. Google+ is one of the largest social networks on the planet. And with Google’s new “Search Plus” features, Google+ has truly become a force to reckon with.

Google+’s “Search Plus” feature essentially uses Google+’s data to help change how your search engine results are weighed. For example, if you’re in someone’s circle and you publish a piece of content, they’re more likely to see that piece of content ranked. If several of someone’s friends like a piece of content, that piece of content is more likely to rank higher.

What’s astounding about “Search Plus” is just how much weight is being placed on these ranking factors. A page that would otherwise never show up on the front page can beat out much more credible sources. As an SEO tool, Google+ now holds unprecedented power.

Now that Google+ is a significant player, how can you harmonize your Google+ efforts with your SEO, your Facebook and your Twitter strategies?

 

Start by Focusing on SEO Fundamentals

The best Google+ optimization in the world won’t make a difference if your website isn’t properly optimized. Google+ can get you a long way, but you still need to handle at least the basics first.

Start by carefully choosing what you’re targeting with your keywords. Use tools like the Google Keyword Tool to figure out the best keywords to target.

Optimize your title tags. This is by far the most important tag on your site. It tells Google what keywords you’re trying to rank for. It’s also your “headline” in the search engine listings.

Write a compelling meta description tag. This tag is what tells the search engines what to put below your title tag. It won’t help your rankings, but it’ll help you get clicks.

Tag all your alt tags in your images. This helps your images rank in Google Images, which in turn helps your rankings in organic Google. It also helps your Google SEO independently.

Develop a strong internal linking structure. Put copious links from your own content to other pages on your site.

Finally, make sure you link to your social media pages from your home page. This helps tell Google that these social media pages are legitimate. That they’re your official page.

 

Develop a Comprehensive Social Media Strategy

Assess both your own social media strategy and your competitors’. Look at:

  • Where are your social media pages ranking right now?
  • Where are your competitors’ social media pages ranking right now?
  • How many fans do they have?
  • How many Twitter followers do they have?
  • How many people do they have in their Google+ circles?
  • How many comments, likes and shares are they getting? What percentage of their followers actively engage with their posts?

This will help give you a sense for where your competitors stand in the social sphere right now. In addition to looking at your competitors, you should also spend a bit of time looking at your own in depth stats.

This will help pinpoint what’s working and what’s not working in your own social media strategy. Take a look at:

  • What kind of content gets the highest virality rating in your posts?
  • What kind of tweets get retweeted?
  • Who’s in your audience? Is it different than the audience of your primary site? Do they vary from Facebook to Twitter to Google+?

Once you have all this information at your fingertips, it’s time to reformulate your strategy. Figure out a purpose for each and every social media platform you’re engaged in.

For example, Facebook may be used for virality and for having two-way conversations with your fans. You can also use Facebook ads’ connection targeting to remind your Facebook fans of your offers.

Twitter on the other hand may be used to answer questions and to build a connection with your audience with quick and fun tips.

Google+ on the other hand should be used with an eye towards SEO. Google+ doesn’t have the same kind of audience that Twitter and Facebook have, but has enormous power in terms of ranking. Take advantage of this power.

 

Making the Most of All Networks

Learning to merge your Google+ strategy with your Facebook and Twitter strategy is essential for your long term success in the social sphere.

In order to do this, you need to know how each network is performing for you. You also need to know the strengths and weaknesses that each network offers you. Then you can effectively form your own unique and tailored social media strategy.

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May 11th, 2012 by admin

4 Powerful Tips for Using Social Listening for SEO

Social Listening For SEOSocial listening is the art and practice of regularly paying attention to social media. Using social listening, you can learn a lot about your audience, influence discussions and improve your search engine rankings.

 

Here are four ways you can use social listening to enhance SEO.

 

#1 – Learn the Slang

On websites, people tend to write in a very proper and formal tone while on Facebook, Twitter and other social media websites however, people tend to just write the first thing that comes to their heads. Learning the Slang

One great thing about the spontaneous nature of their messages is that people tend to use casual language rather than carefully considered language. That can really help you pick up slang that you can use in your own messages and your own copy. You can also incorporate this slang to help you pick up longtail search traffic.

For example, in the marketing industry, marketers call email submits “subs.” On websites, most authors will just call them “email submits.” However, on Twitter and Facebook you’ll find people using “subs” more than “email submits,” as it’s shorter and more catchy.

 

#2 – Observe and Predict Trends

Predecting TrendsTwitter and Facebook are great ways to predict a trend. If you notice that all of a sudden people are talking about one subject, you can jump on that bandwagon early.

It takes time for webmasters, websites and even bloggers to catch up. However, social media websites like Twitter and Facebook are more or less instantaneous.

This moment a coherent thought is formed within a community, it’ll be visible on Twitter and Facebook. People will make offhand comments, people will share resources and the idea will take off like wildfire.

Pretty soon, hundreds of web pages will pop up talking about whatever topic is hot right now. However, if you can get in on the game early by noticing it first through social media, you’ll have a big leg up. Get there early and you can become a major player in the conversation.

 

#3 – Use it to Inform Keyword Research Keyword Research

Social media can inform your keyword research. A lot of people tend to treat social and search as two completely different marketing mediums. In reality, they have a lot of overlap.

Use social media to inform your search marketing keywords. Look on Twitter for new trends, new products, new ideas, new competitors and check out how the search volume is going.

Google Trends can give you a good idea of whether a search term is going up or down. The Google Keyword Tool can give you a good idea of how much traffic the term gets today, though it isn’t useful for predicting future traffic.

If you only use traditional tools to do keyword research, you’ll always be playing catch-up. You’ll only be optimizing for terms that others have already beat you to. When you use social media as well however, you can get ahead of the curve and be one of the early players.

 

#4 – Optimize for Blended Search

There’s a lot of traffic to be had in blended search. Blended search refers to Google’s practice of placing videos, images and local results within the search results itself.

Trying to rank on Google for a main keyword term can be very tough. It could take months, even years of work.

However, if nobody is targeting the blended search results, you can often skip all that work and jump all the way to the top.

Pay as much attention to optimizing your videos, your local results and your images as you do to your website. Make sure you have the right keywords, make sure you have a great title, a great description and get backlinks to your videos and other media.

These are four ways social listening can help improve your SEO.

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April 12th, 2012 by admin

The Secret to Blogging Success: Marry Content with Promotion

 

Just writing your blog posts is not enough. It’s a common saying among journalists and bloggers alike that Content is King.” While this is true, just having great content isn’t enough. You also need great marketing to get that content in front of customers.

 

 

At a certain point, the quality of your content matters more than your marketing. However, in order to get to that point, you need to first have a very solid reader base. A solid enough reader base that a truly spectacular piece of content can go viral.

In order to do that, you need thousands of readers. To get that kind of following, you need to promote your blog posts.

Here’s how to do it.

 

Promote Each of Your Posts Individually

One big mistake marketers often make is promoting just the home page of a blog, rather than promoting their sub-pages. What they fail to realize is that Google ranks web pages rather than web sites.

If you want your pages to rank in Google, you need to work on getting each and every one of those pages to rank, rather than your website as a whole.

 

Develop a Per-Post Marketing Strategy 

Try to come up with a marketing strategy that you can execute every time you make a new post.

For example, let’s say you have a posting schedule of 2 posts a week, once on Monday and once on Thursday.

In addition to writing and posting the content, add promoting the content to your schedule. You should have an exact sequence of promotion tactics you follow through on each and every time you post a new piece of content.

 

Ways of Promoting Blog Posts

Once you’ve written a piece of high quality content, how can you promote it? There are several ways.

One of the easiest ways is to use article marketing. Article marketing involves posting articles on other sites like Squidoo, HubPages or EzineArticles and having a link in the article pointing back to your site. If you publish a few articles with backlinks to your content every time you publish a blog post, you’ll soon have hundreds of links coming into your site.

Another way of promoting your blog posts is to use fairly established systems of back linking, such as directory submissions or social media profile links. You can often get some pretty decent PR links back to your site using these methods.

You can also pay to get backlinks to your site. This is viewed with a little bit of apprehension by some bloggers as Google frowns upon the practice; but it can also be a very fast and easy way to get backlinks.

You can use social media and social bookmarking to get backlinks. Posting your new content on StumbleUpon, Reddit or Digg can be a great way to get new audience participation. If you have a small following already, you can just post the new content to your Facebook and/or Twitter to get people to link to you.

You can write a guest post that links to your new article. Contact other bloggers and see if they’d be interested in having you write a piece of content in exchange for a link.

Also, you might want to consider commenting on other blogs where they have posted similar content to your topic. Such comments on popular blogs can lead to a substantial amount of traffic, if done well.

These are all different ways you can promote your blog post. The most important thing isn’t necessarily how your promote your content, but that you have a solid and consistent plan to do it.

It’s true that it’s important to have high quality content. However, in addition to quality content, you need a quality marketing plan. Create the plan first, then you can focus on writing top notch content.

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February 6th, 2012 by admin