Here I discuss how social media, content marketing and Search Engine Optimisation link together. I also bring in how businesses should create a social media plan, and use two videos to assess the value of social media to businesses.
This is the kind of illustration I could stare at for hours. I just wish I had recorded where I had found this image, (I'm obviously not using Pinterest as well as I should be)! If anyone does know the source, please let me know so I can credit this. My favourite key points from this illustration are:
- Social media allows you to listen. Together with key word research you can create awesome fresh content that will help you engage your audience and increase traffic.
- Your blog and key lead articles, are where you place this fresh content. You promote your valuable content via social media.
- The more valuable your content the more people link to it, thus increasing your authority, and improving Search Engine Optimisation.
- On-page Search Engine Optimisation techniques include what you can do to optimise your blog whilst off-page Search Engine optimisation and anchor text work is part of your link building strategy to help you increase authority.
- Social media, content marketing, Search Engine Optmisation, blogs and links are all... linked!
The importance of valuable content Moving on to another really cool illustration. This one I can credit, and I encourage you to read their full article called, The new SEO rules in a content marketing world. This compares the 2002 world of Search Engine Optimisation with the 2012 view. You can see how important valuable content that humans want to consume and share has become.
A complete marketing mix Your website, social media, content marketing, Search Engine Optimisation, blogs, links, etc, should be part of a complete marketing mix - Product, Price, Place, Promotion, People, Process and Physical Environment. Additionally. like all forms of marketing, successful social media takes planning and resources.
The importance of a social media plan Here are 7 reasons why you need a social media plan:
- You need a map to get to your destination.
- Social media is a tool to drive traffic to your site, to your store, to your call to action - a plan will help you stay focused on what you are trying to achieve.
- You must have a clear understanding of your business goals. In the planning stages, work backwards, identifying what social media activity needs to take place in order to achieve your goals.
- Your social media plan must link with your overall marketing plan and your overall business plan.
- A plan will help you avoid inconsistency and costly mistakes.
- Your social media plan will ensure someone is responsible and accountable for the social media activity of your organisation.
- Social media may be 'free' but it does require resources. Time and budget is required to deliver good quality content in a 'sticky' and 'spreadable' way. Resources are not applied effectively without a plan.
And these are the 12 things your social media plan should contain:
- Your business goals and how social media can help
- How your social media plan links with your marketing plan
- Who your target audiences are
- An understanding of where they hang out
- An understanding of what they want to hear - their needs, interests, desires and on buttons
- Specific social media related goals for the next 6, 12 or 18 months
- A content plan
- Specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timely targets for each channel
- A social media action plan – specific quantifiable activities with required resources
- Social media policies
- Training assessment and allocation plan
- A short, one page, action summary for daily reference
What about social media Return on Investment?
These two videos illustrate social media ROI. The first is a 2009 and the second, a 2012 video. The differences helps to show how social media has moved on.
Now, go forth and be social media heroes ;-)