TwitterFacebookPinterestLinkedInYouTubeEmail

Google Social Media Marketing: The Power of Plus

Ask any SEO professional what the most exciting current social platform is and you’ll receive only one answer. The relatively new Google social media site, known as Plus, can be a great way to integrate the search engine optimisation and social media marketing that your business is engaged in. There are a few different ways to approach this.

Hang on – what’s the big deal with Plus anyway?

The key reason why Plus is so important is that it belongs to Google. Google has access to all the information stored on Plus – it can see who’s a member, what they’re talking about, which sites they own, whose content they are sharing, and so on. A great deal of this data is helpful for the company’s algorithms when they are trying to calculate search rankings.

The potential to gather this information from other platforms, such as Facebook or Twitter, is comparatively limited. That’s not to say that those sites aren’t important, or that they have no SEO impact. However, it does mean that if you’re focussing solely on the SEO benefits, and have to pick just one social media site, it should be Plus.

Google Plus Optimisation

Authorship

google authorship social media

An example of the way in which authorship is displayed in search results

Authorship is a simple mechanism which is used by Google to, you guessed it, determine the author of a piece of content. The process of enabling authorship consists of two steps – firstly, special code must be added to the content, and then the author must link back to the site from a particular area of the Plus profile.

Giving authorship credit to a content producer could help in either of two ways. Primarily, it lets Google know that a site is being run by real people. It can also help to build your authority as an author. It’s widely believed that Google is going to start calculating search rankings by looking at the author rather than just the content, so this is a great way to get in ahead of the changes.

+1s

google+ social media optimisation

It’s no secret that social media signals are taken into account by search engines. As touched upon above, it’s likely that signals broadcast via Google’s own platform will be heavily weighted. When real Plus users endorse your content, especially if they are authorities in your niche, you can be pretty sure that your rankings will improve. Additionally, it’s worth pointing out that sharing your content via Plus will mean that more people are exposed to it, driving traffic to your site.

So how can you get +1s for your content? Well, you could go to any one of hundreds of cheap overseas providers who offer to deliver dozens or even hundreds of +1s for the princely sum of $5. However, we know that fake +1s can have a negative effect on your rankings, so it’s probably best to steer clear of the quick fix.

The best way to attract +1s is to make sure that all of your content is easily shareable. Google themselves provide all the code necessary to insert +1 buttons into your pages. If you’re running a WordPress site, there are also numerous plugins that you can easily install to help you achieve the same aim.

Leave it to Us

At I Say! Digital, we always take advantage of Plus when planning social media or SEO strategies. It’s one of many tools in our box and we’re constantly updating our practices as the landscape evolves. Contact us if you’re interested in learning how we would approach your online marketing.

Social Media Optimisation – Twitter For Businesses 101

social media optimisationIf your business isn’t yet on Twitter, or if you are but you’re not seeing any benefit, then you’re probably wondering what all the fuss is about. Twitter is in the news a lot because its users are constantly getting themselves into trouble or pushing the boundaries of socially (and legally) acceptable behaviour. How much use can a small business really get from the platform, and how should they go about their social media optimisation campaign?

I often write that Twitter is useful for PR because it’s a great equaliser, putting businesses and consumers on the same level and removing some of the barriers to communication that might traditionally be encountered. However, it’s also a profoundly useful marketing tool because it allows you to build trust and get your brand across to potential customers in a completely non-intrusive way. The key to this is the generation of targeted followers and knowledge of the way in which users like to interact.

Social Media Optimisation and Your Valuable Time

Twitter marketing isn’t magic – it’s as simple as convincing leads to ‘follow’ you, keeping them interested with relevant content, and dropping in the occasional promotional message. Your marketing efforts are not seen as intrusive or ‘spammy’ because your followers have a genuine interest in your business. The problem is that this takes time, both to learn the processes involved and to actually do the social media optimisation work itself. As any small business owner will know, time is in short supply. If you’re already working 50+ hours a week within your business, you’re unlikely to want to spend a further few on this. That’s where we come in.

We have access to specialist software, we have intimate knowledge of the platform (we’re all avid Tweeters in our own right), and most importantly, we have the time to dedicate to growing your customer base and effectively marketing your brand. Twitter can generate traffic and add to your bottom line when given the time investment that we can deliver for you.

How to Engage with Potential Customers Online – Social Media

We thought that the readers of this blog might be interested in hearing about Mashable’s list of ‘9 Non-Profits That Get Web Humour‘. This list certainly makes for fun reading, but it also serves as a warning that every business or organisation seeking online social media interaction should heed.

With any type of advertising or marketing, traditional or cutting-edge, offline or online, you need to relate to your target audience. After all, if they don’t pay any attention to what you’re saying, you are unlikely to get the desired increase in sales that made you invest in marketing in the first place. This idea doesn’t seem difficult to grasp for businesses who are operating and marketing themselves in the offline world. Television and print ads are frequently designed and implemented with a particular demographic in mind. It’s rare to see toy adverts on TV during school hours, for example. Ads for makeup or other cosmetic goods always feature conventionally attractive actors. In other words, these efforts are tailored to the customer and to the medium, ensuring that the advertiser is able to obtain maximum value from his investment.

Unfortunately, companies which trade online continue to use the very same tactics that they always have, or simply don’t bother with internet marketing at all. Because there is such a huge potential market available, it’s crucial to maximise the benefit that any internet presence can give to your company. This means that you have to know what sort of person is going to be interested in browsing your site, where they are going to ‘hang out’ online, and how you are going to engage with them in a language that they will both understand and wish to engage with. Humour can be a key part of this, and the internet is home to all sorts of inside jokes and conventions that can be leveraged to encourage conversation.

We know that our clients are too busy running businesses to stay online all day, learning the ins and outs of online etiquette. That’s why we do the work for them by offering social media management services. We know what works and what doesn’t – so leave it with us.

Why BJ Mendelson is Wrong About Social Media Management

As is my wont, I picked up a copy of the Metro yesterday during my commute in order to entertain myself during my lunch break. Can you imagine my horror when I read that social media management for businesses is ‘myth and hype… perpetuated by marketers all over the world’? U.S. comedian BJ Mendelson, who himself has over 760,000 Twitter followers, was loaned a two-page spread to inform readers of the great social media swindle. He would have us believe that any business investing in a social media campaign is throwing their money away. I might be biased, but I beg to differ – and I think that most will agree with me.

Social Media Management Isn’t Magic

It’s true that businesses can’t just set up a Facebook page, post a couple of boring company updates, sit back and watch the cash flow into their coffers. It doesn’t work like that. But, contrary to what Mr. Mendelson says, social media profiles are viable business tools. Instead of thinking of them as a way to plaster your slogan and product across a million screens, it’s better to see them as they were designed: as communication platforms.

The fact of the matter is that almost everybody spends a great deal of time online these days, and that for better or worse, social media has replaced more traditional forms of communication. It’s good to have a Facebook page because the majority of your customers probably use Facebook. You’re talking to them on their terms, through a platform that they have chosen. Twitter is excellent for keeping customers up to date with relevant news and for lending your company a distinct personality, due to its informal ‘pub conversation’ nature. From a more individual perspective, it’s hard to deny that Linkedin is a great way to find and engage with others in your industry – there’s a reason that even the least ‘trendy’ of professionals have a profile there.

Our Expertise Brings Real Results

Effective social media management won’t guarantee that your business will go viral and become an internet sensation. That isn’t to say, however, that your page or profile is an exercise in futility. It is possible to engage with existing and potential customers, stimulating sales or increasing brand loyalty – providing that you put out an appropriate message and respect the etiquette of that particular site. That’s where we come in. Our social media management services can provide your business with expertly crafted profiles, including professional graphic design, and the interaction that your customers will respond to. If you don’t believe us, ask our clients – why would they keep using our services, month after month, if they weren’t seeing a return on their investment?

Social Media and the Law – Or, ‘What Not to Say Online’

Today, Tom looks at what you can, and can not say, on social media:

 

Imogen Thomas' football lover was hot gossip on Twitter in 2011If you’ve read Paul’s recent blog post concerning Chris Brown’s Twitter PR disaster and subsequent departure from the platform, you’ll be aware that what you say online can have a real impact on your reputation. That might sound obvious – after all, much of the time, anything you put your name to online is in the public domain, for better or for worse. Much to the chagrin of those who treat social media sites as forums for political debate (or, in some cases, pure mudslinging), anything you write in a public place online is treated as being ‘published’ in the same way that a newspaper article or book is published, bringing millions under the weighty gavel of defamation law. But this simple truth can distract us from the fact that the line between public and private in the online world is becoming increasingly blurred.

Is a Facebook Status Private?

What if, for example, you post a defamatory status update on Facebook; one that is only viewable by your friends? Is this to be classified as public, and thus subject to the full force of the law? Or is it more similar to the oft-referenced ‘conversation in a pub’? What if your privacy settings mean that your friends’ friends can also see the message? For the moment, it would appear that the law is falling on the side of free speech – see the case of Adrian Smith, who expressed a belief that gay marriage is ‘an equality too far’ and who won his case against an employer that penalised him for saying so. It seems obvious that this is not a problem which will go away, and that advocates of free speech will have a difficult fight ahead as test cases are fought in the courts.

Libel in 140 Characters or FewerTwitter and the Law

Twitter seems much more black and white. Though the average user might not think of it as such – after all, people are always braver behind a keyboard than in person – it is a completely public platform which warrants care. However, because of the fact that so many users ignore its public nature, the law faces yet more test cases. If 10,000 English users retweet a defamatory phrase, are they all liable? Practically speaking, how would a claimant gather the details of so many users in order to sue them? Could Twitter itself be held responsible for a failure to censor offending tweets, and if so, is there a certain number of retweets beyond which it is safe to assume that the site knows something is going on?

Steer Clear of Trouble with Social Media Advice

The law almost always lags behind evolving cultural trends, and the increasing usage of social media is no exception to this rule. Libel law is just one more reason why it’s essential to have a solid social web strategy. Users of these platforms would be wise to watch their words, and social media management professionals should be careful not to get their clients into hot water.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...