Shivani has grown her business substantially since working with Loral. Her opportunities have also grown. She is now aiming to take her skills to the next level.
What has social media have to do with SEO, search engine rankings and Page Rank?
Now, more than ever, it has much to do with those key strategies.
If you haven’t been using social media consistently (or at all) because you think it’s a waste of time, I’ve got news for you. You need to start devoting more attention to it immediately.
What you need to focus on building online is your authority. I know, not new, but I’m talking about a shift in focus.
Social media is a fast growing ranking factor, particularly with Google.
What’s being shared online gets better rankings in Google today and it will get even more weight tomorrow. (The latest algorithm update, referred to as Panda, was just the beginning.)
“We’re continuing to work on additional algorithmic iterations to help webmasters operating high-quality sites get more traffic from search.” Google Webmaster Central
What’s shared on Twitter counts, and of course Facebook counts, too, but Google’s search bot can only search the public portion of Facebook. Your profile is not public, but your “page” is. A link that gets passed around on people’s profile pages will not be credited on search engines. However on Facebook pages, sharing links is counted by search engines as a positive ranking signal.
Now that you can interact as your Facebook Page on other Pages, it’s important to do that. Simply login and choose to “Use Facebook as Page” under your “Account” tab. Visit other pages, leave relevant comments and start spreading the word about your page. If you have a blog, make sure to hook it up to feed into your Page also.
Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+ and other social networking sites are all part of the social ranking algorithm being used by Google.
If you’re not actively sharing your links on the social networks, you need to start.
Publicize your content and establish yourself as an authority in your niche — strategically — because it counts for your SEO score much more than you might think.
Social media SEO is becoming more and more important and it’s going to have to be a part of your plan. If you’re not using social media, it may end up that you won’t be able to rank at all on Google.
Okay, so why am I saying it’s more important now than ever before?
Google has received a lot of flak about all the spammy sites that are ranking well in results. So, the tech engineers have been working unceasingly on figuring out how to eliminate those worthless sites. Most recently, there was the Panda update. It shook a lot of stuff off the search results. But there’s more.
Even the number of backlinks, which have been heavily weighted in the search engines for years, didn’t work as well as intended.
Spam blogs and sites build backlinks like there’s no tomorrow. They’ve got the whole process down. If you have a blog, you probably know exactly what I mean. Even spam comments are getting more difficult to recognize. They are often “real people” that actually type a comment, mention your name and say something about the post that’s correct. But they are still spam comments leading to spam sites.
So, if backlinks aren’t going to be working as well as before, what’s next?
It’s something Google is talking about and the new buzzword is “Author Authority.”
Google will establish Author Authority through what’s being shared on the social sites. That’s one of the reasons Google built Google+, and Google +1.
If your content is being shared on the social spaces by real users, Google will consider it more valuable. By the act of others sharing your content, it goes beyond the “spammy” or even the questionable label. Hopes are that spammers will have a hard time competing with that. People don’t share spammy sites with friends.
The effort is all about returning the best results to searchers.
Google wants real content.
What do you think? Are you actively sharing your content where it counts? Do you understand the importance of Google’s focus on Author Authority? Any questions? Let me know!
You do realize that, right?
And since you’re a marketer, can I assume you have a strong social media strategy?
Because smart marketers are taking advantage of the social media spaces to promote their businesses — and you should be, too.
If major brands such as Coca-Cola, Harley-Davidson, Six Flags, Apple and Pizza Hut are using Facebook to reach their target markets, Facebook should definitely be a part of YOUR social media efforts.
Are you with me? Say yes and make it happen! (You knew I was going to say that, didn’t you.)
Learning about social networking is uppermost in the minds of most marketers. And that’s a good thing. Never stop learning.
70% of marketers have expressed the desire to know more about effective marketing via these channels, Facebook in particular.
(I love Facebook. My friends and “fans” rock! ( LiveOutLoud Facebook Page >> ) We’ve got a lot of interactivity going on there. That’s why I want to talk with you about social media marketing. We’ve experienced both successes and failures. Both are valuable!)
Did you know that over 90% of marketers spend at least six hours per week on social networking? Some spend 20 hours or more! That’s because we know it’s that important to our businesses.
Do you do it by yourself or have support for it?
Let’s have a conversation about it in the comments below. (This blog is another interactive part of the Live Out Loud social networking efforts. We want to hear from you!)
B2C finds Facebook and Twitter as the most effective.
B2B relies heavily on LinkedIn and video (YouTube is becoming increasingly important), though they also use Facebook and Twitter.
Both types of businesses are increasing focus on their blogs because of the optimized capability of feedback.
Okay, so I’ve covered quite a bit today.
Think about the benefits I listed above and let’s discuss them in the comments below. Talk about which social strategies you use and why. Which ones are you ignoring and why? What’s been the most effective strategy for you?
Let’s get this conversation going. That’s what we’re all about at Live Out Loud!
The last couple of weeks we’ve been talking about using Social Media Marketing as a tool for building your Cash Machine. I hope you’ve taken time to do your own personal research on where your target market is hanging out online. This week is the end of my three part article series on Social Media and I want to close with some basic rules for conducting yourself properly in this arena.
When you’re ready to create your accounts and begin your Social Media journeys, remember the Golden Rule… treat others as you would like to be treated. Remember when we first started using email and Instant Messenger and we often wrote in all caps? That was the equivalent of shouting and could get you in trouble with those self proclaimed internet police. Social Media also has some basic rules of engagement.
Think about how you would approach someone on the street or at a function. For example when I first meet someone I say hello, tell them my name and then tell them about my company. People like to know who they’re talking to –not just a business.
Creating a Twitter, MySpace or Facebook account for marketing purposes can be a tricky thing as these users tend to share more personal information rather than professional. So don’t be afraid to add content that tells users who you are and how you got started doing what you do. Be careful of wording. People don’t want to be “sold to”. Making your content fun will inspire them to learn more when you invite them to view your site or be part of your own communities. Create discussions centered on your product or service that engages your followers. Ask questions that provoke a response and not just by saying “Respond to this post…” The point here is to make it their idea.
Stay involved with your social community friends. Put in your two cents. Be respectful. In other words, if you don’t have something nice or helpful to say, don’t say anything, but if you do have something postitive, this is your opportunity to connect with your audience. That’s the whole point.
When marketing your product or service on these sites, be straight forward. The old bait and switch routine has proven counter productive and can even cost you. You don’t want to create a bad reputation on these sites. The last thing you want is for your online friends to bad mouth your marketing techniques to everyone else.
Another rule for Social Media Marketing is to be a giver. Give more than your receive with your content and posts. What you offer to conversations should be valuable. If it doesn’t apply, avoid posting it. Timing is everything. So if plugging your newest ebook or product isn’t applicable, wait for a better time.
I’ve seen people completely sabotage their online marketing efforts by bad mouthing the competition. Don’t do it. If your product or service is superior, find ways to point out the differences without being negative. Your followers want to learn the benefits in more subtle ways. Put your mind to it. Think of how you make buying decisions regarding your own choices.
Last, if you want Social Media Marketing to work for your Cash Machine you have to stay involved and connected. Make it a part of your routine. Remember this is a tool to find out what your target market is up to. If you stumbled across a great post, comment on it and recommend it to your followers. Show recognition to your people! The more you pay attention and stay involved the more they will too!
What do you do when you’ve failed at something?
How do you react when your vision has turned south?
What do you tell yourself?
For most people those questions are sure to get some sad and depressing answers BUT for an entrepreneur the answer will be immediate and simple…
Creating a successful Cash Machine is not an exact science with predictable outcomes. There’s a ton of trial and error that goes on when diving into owning a business, big or small. There are times when things look great on paper and sound good in conversation but fail miserably in the marketplace. It happens. Not every successful entrepreneur hits the ball out of the park the first time around.
What makes an entrepreneur an entrepreneur is not the amount of cash in their pocket (although that’s a good indicator). It’s their resilience and ability to figure out, before it’s too late, what’s working and what’s not. This is a cornerstone in entrepreneurialism. You must be able to recognize when something is not going to fly.
If you have a Cash Machine that is headed south, you need to dissect each component and re-examine your process. Look at things from all angles and different perspectives. It might just be a matter of making adjustments to your plan. If you find a fatal flaw, cut your losses and ask yourself “What’s next?” Believe me there’s always something next.
If you’re finding yourself in a Cash Machine that isn’t moving forward, this is a learning opportunity. This is your chance to study the outcome of the decisions and choices you made. Life’s biggest lessons are learned this way.
Entrepreneurs know that the failure of a business means new opportunity and it’s not something to take personally. It’s business. They ask themselves “What’s next? What am I going to do to create, generate, and expand?”
True entrepreneurs don’t allow setbacks to distract them from the ultimate goal of success. It’s natural to be emotional when something doesn’t work out, just remember this is only a fork in the road. There is another path ahead if you just keep moving.
Here are some things you can do if you have or are facing a meltdown…
1. Dig in and find out why!
2. Learn from your mistakes. Write them down and commit them to memory.
3. Don’t play the blame game. It’s done.
4. Be confident and give yourself some credit. You made a go of it!
5. Ask yourself, “WHAT’S NEXT?”
To be a true entrepreneur means to be tenacious, resilient, and open. As cliché as it sounds, the old adage is true, “When one door closes, another opens.” Pick up the pieces and get back on the path. The journey of entrepreneurialism is a windy road. You’ve got to take the good with the bad. If you’re up for it, it will be the ride of your life!
It seems that each new “thing” often compels us, as “marketers”, to rethink our strategies. This is both good and not good because while it can help us look ahead, it can also keep us jumping from one thing to another and never make any progress at all – or may even make us lose ground that we already gained.
Yet, understanding trends is essential to business. Today the trend is social media. The bad news is that the average marketer is clueless how to use it to his or her advantage — and if you use it wrong, you’ll pay the price.
Social media is not something to ignore. It’s huge! And whether you decide to get into it or not, you’re not immune to it. It’s pretty safe to say that somewhere you or your offerings will be posted somewhere online some day and quite possibly more often than you would imagine… good or bad. You may choose not to be a part of the social media scene, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t be.
What you need to begin thinking about is how social media affects you as a businessperson and what your strategy will be for engaging with it. The scale and speed of innovation in social media requires that you not only learn about it, but also start implementing it as soon as possible.
To truly understand Social Media and the effect it will have, take a look at what has happened to television. When the cable companies brought us hundreds of channels, the major networks lost a huge portion of their audience. “Niche” channels such as the History channel, the Science channel, Discovery, the Food Network, DIY, shopping channels, and many more, came out of nowhere and took substantial shares away from the major networks.
Today, there’s hardly a discernible “mainstream”. Our world is shifting toward millions of specialty niches instead of mass markets. The “hard-to-find” isn’t so hard to find online. And, of course people will gravitate toward these niches because they more closely satisfy their individual interests.
Social media offers the chance to attract more traffic and establish a larger presence online. You have the chance to become an authority voted on by the people – so be real! People buy from people, not sales letters.
Remember that social media is really an answer to the call of the people online. They don’t want pushy marketers invading their space. Everyone is rightfully jaded today. People online are rapidly maturing in the marketplace. Many are quite savvy now. Most have “been there done that”. Yes, there are still newbies, but it won’t take them long to catch on, especially with social media.
If your only goal is short-term profits, it will be evident in your social media marketing.
The really interesting thing about being involved in the social media arena is the loyalty and brand recognition it can bring. Social media transforms people from content readers into content publishers, rooted in conversations between people and peers. A sense of friendship develops because of the interaction. There’s an investment in the relationships that develops and becomes very strong.
When Social Media Marketing is done right, the market becomes connoisseurs of information within niches of interest to them (like yours – hint, hint). They contribute information and it equates to set them apart. They can become your word-of-mouth force because peers trust peers. The trendsetters, so to speak, are peers and others whose opinions are respected. You can become a trendsetter among trendsetters about your niche.
The goals of each Social Media Marketing program or campaign will differ for every business, but most will involve some form of building an idea or brand awareness, increasing visibility, encouraging brand feedback and dialogue — and thereby selling products or services.
Social Media Marketing can’t replace all internet marketing strategies. It must be used in conjunction with other forms of marketing. Placing “all your eggs in one basket” has never been a good plan. Don’t stop everything else you’re doing to go strictly in this direction. Use it as another avenue, as a way of reaching those you may not have ever reached otherwise.
To your wealth,
P.S. Got something to say? Talk to me below. I’d love to hear from you!
Can Social Media Network Marketing really help me?
If you haven’t caught wind by now of the Internet’s newest big thing you must’ve been off the planet for a while. In a world of what’s hot and what’s not, the Social Media boom is smokin’! Websites like MySpace and FaceBook successfully reached global recognition seemingly overnight! There are dozens more racing in that same direction. As far as Internet trends are concerned if you have a Cash Machine you need to take notice!
Standing in line I heard two young girls chatting away. One says to the other, “It’s like I’m tethered to MySpace… I check it all the time, I can’t go a day with out it!” It got me thinking of the power behind social networking communities. Are they really that addictive? The answer is without a doubt – yes. The exchange of information both professional and personal has its fixating affects on people from all walks of life. Imagine what that could mean for you and your Cash Machine.
Now I’m not suggesting you run right out and create a profile on MySpace (unless of course your target market is 18 to 25 year olds). What I am suggesting is to take a deeper look into these types of communities. There’s much more to Social Media Marketing than individual profiles with glittery flash and endless play lists of music. Don’t let the MySpace or FaceBook names fool you… they’re just the Kleenex of the tissue market, if you will.
With the economy in its current condition being creative with advertising dollars is as important as staying current with marketing trends. This (not so) new trend will prove to be a saving grace with little to no advertising budgets. Businesses of all sizes are jumping on this wave and riding it all the way to the bank. Membership communities connect like-minded people together. It provides information and learning on a whole new level.
Recently after much research and deliberation I’ve come to the conclusion that we, here at Live Out Loud, need a way to connect with each other… a community of our own. So with out further ado, I am happy to announce the launch of the Live Out Loud Community slated for November 17, 2008. I look forward to seeing you all there.
Members will have an opportunity to interact with each other and create relationships that will provide support in every stage of wealth building and entrepreneurial endeavors. You’ll connect with mentors, get inside information on marketing strategies, create specialized groups for similar cash machines, compare game plans and so much more… all in one spot!
Keep checking the Webinar section of the website… Our last Webinar detailing the new Community was a phenomenal success! If you missed the last one don’t miss the next one.
Remember Wealth Builders… staying current with new marketing trends is key to gaining new clients. Always have your opportunity radar on full alert!
P.S. Let me know your thoughts, experiences, and suggestions below by posting a message. I’m looking forward to hearing from you…