The importance of social media is growing and most businesses consider it a very strong medium to improve brand reputation. According to the ExactTarget Marketing Cloud 2014 State of Marketing Study of Saleforce.com, around 66% of marketers say that social networking sites do impact their business performance indirectly. Personalized rank results and results with rel-author with Google search imply that social signals can have an indirect impact on SERP rankings. However, one question that businesses are asking is whether success with social media optimization depends on developing shareable content or being active on social networking sites. The answer is ‘both’. Let’s see why.
It is an undisputable fact that quality content can enhance social signals. Matt Cutts has already stressed that high quality content naturally generates a lot of likes, shares and +1’s. So people who are disinterested in, confused, busy or unable to participate in social networking sites simply need to produce good content which will get shared by others on social media sites. This would allow even those who are who on social media to get traffic from social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, GooglePlus and more. Also several tools are available including Twitterfeed, HootSuite, SNAP Pro and more to automatically share blog posts with these sites. Many entrepreneurs who loathe social networking sites and still want to drive social signals rely on such tools.
However, industry experts point out that if you really want social signals to work for your search engine optimization efforts, it is not enough to simple have your content circulated across social sites. It is imperative to stay active on these sites. If you do not interact directly with your audience, they will lose interest in you. Suppose you are in floor carpeting, have written an article about your latest floor carpet, and people who like your article share it in their social circle. If you think your job is done, you are wrong. Readers may want to ask you questions about the carpet – like whether it is allergy free, how water damage can be managed, and so on. Providing answers to these questions is important to show that your audience matters. If you donâ€™t respond to these questions, potential customers would take it as poor customer service and even think your product is not authentic. Being socially active ensures that you can provide timely and suitable responses to customer queries and build a positive image.
Participation in important conversations on a social network allows you to share your knowledge with peers and other users would consider you an expert in your field and look upon your content as authentic. You would miss such conversations if you are socially inactive. It would also limit your opportunity to understand what your competitors are doing so that you can modify your strategy accordingly.
In essence, success with social media marketing requires you to produce good quality and also be socially active. Bonding with your fans and followers and responding to their queries and comments appropriately and in a timely manner is indeed the key to a winning social media optimization strategy.