How to Optimize Social ContentFebruary 15, 2023
There are a few channels that modern digital marketers and business owners simply must be attentive to when marketing their brand and products, and social media is at or near the top of any such list. Numerous consumers utilize social media to help them with product and purchasing decisions, and optimizing your business for these individuals will benefit you in a variety of ways.
At SEO Werkz, we're happy to offer the best social media marketing services around, helping position your business for optimal success in this area across numerous mediums. From Facebook and Twitter to Google Plus and Pinterest, we can help put your business in front of more potential customers online -- and also show you how to optimize your social content, including in ways that match your other forms of advertising and branding. What exactly is social media marketing, why is optimizing your content within it so important, and how can you go about this process, both on your own and with assistance from our team? Here's a primer on everything you need to know
Basics on Social Media Optimization
Sometimes simply abbreviated as SMO, social media optimization refers to the use of various forms of social media as a platform to market a company, brand, product or service. SMO encompasses all types of content shared through social media channels and how it is presented overall, from the images used in posts to how frequently you post and how much discussion-worthy information each post contains.
For many companies and individuals, social media marketing is simply a natural extension of their presence on social media. They have pages for their company or brand on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and other sites, they use these channels to establish connections with potential consumers, and this is how they drive traffic back to their website.
However, SMO can be an incredibly complex process that requires serious attention if you hope for it to be effective, and how you go about optimizing your social content can vary widely depending on how familiar you are with each specific channel.
Ways of Using Social Media for Marketing
Part of what makes social media so attractive as marketing vehicle is the numerous different ways it can be utilized, and how you should go about optimzing your social content will depend on these different approaches. You may focus a lot of your efforts on maximizing how many users sharing or "liking" a post actually see it, noting how each channel shows posts to different percentages of followers as opposed to just broadcasting out information.
Here are some general methods by which social media marketing and optimization will be used:
- Customer engagement: Many businesses are just now realizing how beneficial it is to actively engage with customers. Give your customers a reason to be interested in your brand by being responsive, helpful and authentic when interacting through social media channels.
- Generating leads: There are numerous tried-and-true methods for generating leads online today, but social media marketing may be one of the most cost-effective and immediate. Utilize your social media profiles to provide interested individuals with promotional offers, new product information and other helpful content that will encourage them to make a purchase.
- Driving traffic: It's important to remember that social media may be one of the most exciting ways of driving website traffic, not only for how easy it is but also how direct it is. After all, visitors that follow your social media profiles don't even need to leave the channel in order to get where they're going.
- Improving search engine rankings: Google and other search engines are constantly indexing web pages, including social media websites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn; how you optimize your content within these channels can have a direct impact on how it is ranked by search engines, and how popular your profiles become as a result.
A Consistent Voice
Throughout any efforts you make to optimize your company's social media marketing and related themes, it's important to remember that social media is not "separate" from other forms of SEO and digital marketing -- rather, it's all part of the same umbrella.
For example, how you present yourself on Facebook and how is comes across to individual users may be very different from your Twitter account – which is still distinct from how you want potential customers to view your blog content or website's SEO ranking.That means one of the most important things you can do is to develop a consistent voice throughout all of your social media channels.
This doesn't mean using a strict, identical format for how you write every social media post or how you come across in each channel -- how can you be helpful and unique when expected to deliver the exact same message over and over again? Rather, it refers to how you structure your posts, how you speak to your audience and how you respond to various questions and concerns.
A few elements or themes you'll want to pay particular attention to when it comes to consistency across not just social media channels, but across all your marketing material, including your on-site content:
- Keywords: How you talk about your company, product and industry should be how you expect it to appear when found online. A heavy focus on keywords in how you write blog articles and how you present yourself across social media channels will help drive traffic to your site.
- Pricing: Though how you price your products can change depending on how popular it is, how much demand there is for the product and even how much competition you face, how you promote prices in one channel should be similar to how you present it elsewhere. Whether this means offering special introductory offers or simply noting how your pricing is better than that of your competitors will depend on how you market your prices.
- Responsiveness: How you respond to comments and questions is important, as this can help establish how interested people are in your products and how likely they may be to make a purchase. You don't want potential customers to feel like they can't get immediate responses from you, as this could indicate how unprofessional your brand and how it is viewed by others.
- General tone: To whatever degree possible, try to maintain a consistent tone across how you present yourself in social media channels and how you speak with customers, but also how you write your blog articles and how professional your website looks. This means how upbeat or funny (or not) that you are when speaking, how "official" or conversational (or not) that your writing comes across and how formal or informal your website looks.
Best Practices for Social Media Optimization
How can you go about optimizing your business's social media presence in ways that not only benefit you, but are also consistent with your other branding and advertising methods? Here are several major areas to be sure you engage in.
Identify Primary Social Media Goals
The first step in this process, especially if you've just started your business or social media account, is to determine how you want these channels to benefit your company. Do you simply need a way for existing customers and fans to reach out to you? Do you hope that by sharing how-tos, tips and tricks or other lessons from your business that it will help people become more informed about your brand? Will this serve as a vehicle for new product announcements?
These are some of the questions you'll want to ask yourself when developing how you go about using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and whatever other forums your customers are using. You can always experiment with how they get used later on, but it's best to have at least a general idea of how you want each one to work.
This also means how you expect or want your audience to contribute on different forums, as this can vary a lot from how people interact with their friends and family online to how they behave across customer service channels. It's important how you present some incentives for those who follow you -- do you offer freebies through contests or some other method?
Selecting Social Media Tools
Once you have a better idea of how your social media presence should be used, it's time to look at how you actually go about doing so. This means how many channels you use, how many people will be managing them and which tools they'll use. An in-house team or some freelancers may be how you decide to move forward, but how will they communicate with one another? Will you have them all use the same communication app, or will it be more of a free for exchange across different mediums?
You also want to how popular your channels are with their audience. If Facebook is typically how most people in your target market prefer to get their information, how will you know how a smaller presence on a less popular channel can actually lead to how many sales or customers your business acquires?
When setting up any kind of social media account, it's vital to ensure all important details are filled out. For instance, be sure your page is complete with at least one high-quality photo -- leaving your profile picture area blank (or using the default placeholder image) will turn off many potential customers.
In addition to how complete your profile is, how the information is organized and how easy it is for visitors to get around from page to page can provide them with how user friendly your brand will be. If they get lost or confused when visiting you online, how likely do you think they'll be to try you out in person? Make sure people visiting your social media profiles will be able to easily find whatever information they seek without too much trouble.
Hashtags and Filters
Many people are well aware of hashtags within the realm of social media, and these are vital to how you can optimize your business for search engines and how you promote and engage with others.
When using hashtags, how specific do you need to be? Do some research on the term to see how popular it is, how many people are using it and what other variables there might be. For instance, using a hashtag that has been used a million times might cause the number of people who will see your post to drop dramatically, as they'll be less likely to click on something with that much competition.
In addition to the hashtags you use, how they're organized is equally as important. If you include too few or too many in any one post, how interested do you think someone will be in what you have to say?
As for how you include filters on your posts, how many do you use? There's no right or wrong answer since everyone does it differently. But how are they used is important -- if the filters are how prominent how much attention will they attract? If there are too few or not enough variety, how interesting will how many people find your content?
Solve Followers' Problems
Content itself is at the core of your social media success, helping draw your audience in. One primary method that's utilized to great success by businesses large and small: Creating content that solves many potential customers' problems.
For instance, a common use of social media today is for various infographics, which are a good way to optimize a lot of information -- including data from studies, quotes from experts and more. Posting an image of such an infographic on a social media account is a great way to engage with others and optimize for search, as you're tapping into a lot of relevant keywords without having to optimize directly.
In addition to infographics, there are numerous studies showing how writing posts that answer common questions from your target market can help optimize how many people visit your social media profiles. A quick search on Google for '[type of industry] problems' will turn up numerous questions that could be answered with content.
Regular Use of Images
Images are a huge part of optimal social media use, since they optimize for a wide range of keywords and provide a visual appeal that posts alone cannot. Creating a steady stream of polished, high-quality images that can be shared on social media is going to optimize how many people will visit your profiles while at the same time engaging with them in all sorts of ways.
This is one major area that differs significantly depending on the social media platform being used. The kinds of images that do best on Facebook, for instance, won't necessarily draw as much attention on Instagram or Pinterest. So, optimize for these platforms by looking at what's already working within them and how you can take this success and apply it to your own efforts.
How regular you post is another key aspect of optimizing for social media. If you're only posting once every week or two, there's simply not enough content being shared to optimize well. Also, posting once in a blue moon isn't going to help you stay engaged with your audience, so how frequently you post is important for these purposes as well.
At the same time, constantly posting on social media could be viewed by some as spamming, so you want to avoid this route. But how often you do share content is important, so optimize your efforts by trying different frequencies and seeing what brings in the best results for your business.
Importance of Calls to Action
Calls to action (CTAs) are some of the most important elements of any social media post. They optimize for both engagement and click-through, ensuring that as many people as possible will see them and take advantage of whatever they're offering.
For instance, some businesses optimize their CTA buttons to use keywords relevant to the user's search intent. People who are looking for a product you offer on Google are more likely to follow a CTA that uses the words 'buy now,' as opposed to one that's generic and doesn't optimize for any terms.
The overarching theme for all CTAs: Be specific, but also be as simple and short as possible while still getting the point across.
Prioritize the Most Effective Social Media Sites
Over a period of time after launching your business and creating social media profiles across various mediums, you'll begin to notice that certain platforms are better than others for your brand and business type. Maybe your company's Facebook ads have been exploding and drawing major business, but your Instagram efforts have been relatively flat.
While there will be some cases where you can improve your content on a site where you're lagging behind, in other cases this is simply because your company or products are more conducive to a specific social media platform. That's okay, optimize for the platforms where you're seeing positive results while continuing to optimize elsewhere if and when things begin turning around.
Monitor Your Progress
Finally, as you optimize for social media, it's important to monitor how these efforts impact traffic and engagement. How have things changed since you first launched your profile, and were any particular changes made?
Also, if your results begin going way up or down after a change was made, optimize for what worked instead of trying to optimize in multiple different ways at once. A strong brand voice on social media is what brings people in, not a hodge-podge of various different posts.
For more on how to optimize your social media posts and content, or to learn about any of our social media marketing or other SEO and digital advertising themes, speak to the team at SEO Werkz today.