If you're not already "hip" to this reality, it's time to face the facts -- Social Media is critical to your SEO results. There are lots of reasons behind this, but we're going to focus on 2 critical factors in this post: Content & Influence.
In 1996 Bill Gates made a statement that has now become unforgettable in marketing circles the world over -- "Content is king." Bill was right then, and he's still right today. But what Bill couldn't anticipate about the Internet was the rise of "user influence" in shaping the way we perceive and experience content.
Before the rise of Social Media, it was basically impossible to interact with content on a website or a blog. Sure, you could leave a comment or build a link to your favorite article, but actually interacting -- rating, voting, sharing, retweeting, liking, plus-one'ing, and promoting -- all of this was still many years into the future when Bill Gates declared content the king.
Today, social media has transformed the way your customers experience content when they surf the web. Users are now empowered to promote the content they find useful and relevant. And so the name of the game for SEO today is getting as much user interaction with your content as possible.
Here are the 2 critical social media factors for SEO results that you need to understand:
1. You need to publish new content frequently and repeatedly.
Again, Bill Gates' prediction still holds true. But now you need more content than ever before. Your content needs to be shareable, interesting, valuable, and user-centered. The old game of creating heavily optimized SEO content has been replaced by the new game of putting readers before search engine robots and quality content above "optimized" content (and rightly so!).
What many small businesses fail to understand about the content on their website is that it needs to be dynamically changing all the time. You simply cannot get dramatic results with just a few blog posts here and there. You have to be updating frequently to make an impact in the ever-growing search engine results pages.
2. You need to build relationships, authority, and influence.
This is the social media part of the new SEO equation. You need to create an active and engaging presence on social media channels in order to have a platform for your content. In what I call "The Old SEO" content was also evaluated by social influencing factors. But back then all Google had to go on was "Link Building." If your content or website got a lot of links, you could rank well for a particular keyword phrase.
But when social media arrived on the scene, it offered a much more impressive form of social influence measuring. Where link building was a static process for ranking content, social media is a dynamic process with much greater depth and, well, humanity.
If you can wrap your head around these 2 simple ideas, your SEO strategy will benefit. You'll begin to see the long-term and much bigger picture of how SEO is really about influence and authority.