Every brand today seeks a devoted and enthralled social media audience. However, building a genuine social media following is tricky. Merely being present on social platforms isn't enough. That's where SMO (social media optimization) comes into play. It's a strategy for increasing social interaction and, thus, expanding your brand's reach.
There are more than 4 billion active social media users worldwide. You have a huge potential to reach active users and find your potential customers in them. But you must improve your social media to accomplish so.
Social media is a vital area of marketing with lots of intangibles that can make it difficult to navigate. This post will walk you through the most fundamental principles of SMO, which is optimizing your social media profiles for your brand. Let's get started!
- What Is Social Media Optimization (SMO)?
- SEO Vs. SEM Vs. SMM Vs. SMO
- 6 Reasons Why You Need Social Media Optimization (SMO)
- Social Media Optimization Techniques (SMO)
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What Is Social Media Optimization (SMO)?
Social Media Optimization (SMO)entails determining which content performs best for your brand on social media channels and then replicating that success. It's easier said than done. To do so, you will need to find out what kind of content your target audience wants, find out where your brand fits in the social media world, and then execute and reevaluate your approach.
The idea is to get your content in front of as many individuals as possible. The purpose of SMO is to maximize your brand's digital presence through social channels to reap the most benefit for your business.
There are many things brands need to do for SMO and to win on social media. This includes but is not limited to choosing the right platforms to create original content, finding influencers, and converting followers into website traffic.
The best thing you can do to improve your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) results is to increase or optimize your Social Media exposure. Facebook, Instagram, Clubhouse, Twitter, and numerous other platforms have been used to connect buyers and sellers all over the world. pic.twitter.com/4h7oDJGhW8— Silas T Nkoana (@silasTnkoana) December 19, 2021
Social media marketing can be a massive source of website traffic in almost any industry you can think of. 54% of social media browsers use it to research products.
Social media is a great marketing tool because when someone follows you or subscribes to your account, they consent to and show interest in consuming your content. People on social media are mostly consuming content. So you can use this to your brand's advantage to highlight issues or topics that your brand addresses.
Most people need to see several pieces of content from a single brand before taking any action. B2B buyers consume almost 13 pieces of content before deciding on a vendor, according to FocusVision. With so many people spending so much time on social media, it's an excellent opportunity for brands to stay top of mind of their potential buyers.
SEO Vs. SEM Vs. SMM Vs. SMO
SEO: Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization or SEO is the process of optimizing your website to rank higher for relevant keywords on search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Implementing SEO techniques on your website helps in getting traffic from the free and organic search results on search engines. Essentially, effective SEO techniques lead to your website appearing higher on search engine results pages (SERPs) due to its positive response to the search engine’s particular ranking algorithm.
SEM: Search Engine Marketing
Just like SEO, SEM improves the digital marketing outreach on search engines such as Google and Bing. SEM, commonly known as advertising through a paid media budget, earns traffic by purchasing ads on search engines to display their ads for specific keywords at the top of the page. To improve the efficiency of your paid advertising campaign, you can choose the location and many other factors with Google Adwords SEM. This type of SEM is known as Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising.
SMM: Social Media Marketing
Considered as the future of digital marketing, Social Media Marketing encompasses paid and organic digital marketing efforts on social media networks such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Posting relevant content on your social media page regularly builds an engaged audience of followers and helps to grow your business immensely in the online world. Paid social media campaigns have also become common as a part of SMM.
SMO: Social Media Optimisation
With SMO techniques, you can increase the awareness of your product, services, brand, and event by using several social media outlets and communities in order to generate viral publicity. Social news and bookmarking sites, RSS feeds, social media sites, video and blogging sites are all used for SMO.
6 Reasons Why You Need Social Media Optimization (SMO)
Optimizing your business via social media requires hard work, constant research, and smart strategizing. Going over these 6 reasons, you will get to appreciate why SMO plays a major role in propelling your online business to the top.
More Customer Interaction
An established presence on social media will help you increase customer interaction. When you put out interesting and engaging content that appeals to your target audience, you will likely draw them towards your brand and encourage them to ask questions, make comments, and provide suggestions.
Social media opens up wonderful opportunities for your brand to get to know your potential customers and also allow them to get to know you better. It's an amazing avenue to begin an actual relationship with potential customers who hang out on social media and maintain meaningful relations for a long time.
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Naturally, when you are active on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and other social media platforms, the more you will boost your visibility, the more people will come to know about your brand and online store.
This increases the chances for word-of-mouth marketing related to your products and services, especially if you are posting eye-catching stuff. With this kind of visibility in hand, you can also enhance your search engine visibility.
When you have an upcoming event or an exciting launch planned, posting such an announcement on your own website is certainly not enough. Using social media, you can spread the word faster to a wider audience base, and be able to inform existing customers and passing visitors about your company, events, promos, and special discounts.
If your brand gets featured in a popular publication such as Forbes, post about it. If you are launching some new products, post about it. If you are holding an interesting contest, post about it. All of these will captivate your target audience's attention and drive them to visit your online store. Who knows, they might like something on your website and end up buying it.
Customer Loyalty Enhancement
Just as you are able to make new friends and keep in touch with current ones through Facebook, Instagram, and other social networks, you can do the same with potential and existing customers. When you interact with them on a regular basis in a place where they love spending most of their time, they start to view you in the same light. You can easily gain their trust and develop and enhance customer loyalty in the process.
Image Source: Subway Listens Twitter
Added Marketing Insight
You will be surprised at how much you can learn about what your customers want and what they are looking for when you take the time to go over your newsfeed. It would also benefit you to check out profiles of those people following you or who have liked your page and find out what they search for the most with respect to your industry.
Such details will give you inspiring ideas on how, when, and where you should market your products. These can spark inspiration in coming up with new products/services ideas to add to your inventory list.
Image Source: Spotify Cares Twitter
Customer Service Improvement
Perhaps you have seen a comment or two on Instagram or Twitter that pertains to a customer's concern or question. It's because social platforms also provide a place for people to air out their complaints, express a cause of worry, ask for help, and the like.
Being present on different social networks is an excellent opportunity for you to improve your customer service and make your customers choose you over your competitors in the long run.
Image Source: McDonald's Facebook
Social Media Optimization (SMO) Techniques
You must first devise an SMO strategy to optimize your social media channels and then put it into action. If you follow these steps, you will be well on your way to having a search-friendly social network presence.
Analyze Your Target Audience
You will have to focus on the correct social platforms to benefit from social, which should ideally be the ones that your target audience uses the most. The purpose here is to figure out which social network your target audience utilizes and where they go to solve their problems related to your industry.
To begin with, you can choose the channels that are the most popular right now. In the initial stages, your traffic will be distributed; some may bring in a fair amount of engagement, while others might send a lot of traffic directly to your site. But in the long run, you should narrow down your target audience.
Perform Competitive Analysis
When you conduct a competitive analysis, you are trying to figure out how you compare to your competitors. How much social media activity do you have in comparison to your competitors? What forms of social media content are your competitors and other industry leaders generating (or are not using)?
Analyze which of their content receives the most attention from the target audience and evaluate why the audience likes it the most. The point of conducting a competitor analysis is to know your target audience preferences without much experimentation since you and your competitors target the same audience base.
Also, run a content gap analysis to discover which topics your competitors have not covered and are also liked by your target audience. This will help you to identify the untapped spaces in your industry. If you cover these topics in your content, there's a great chance of gaining a competitive edge over your competitors.
Image Source: SEMrush
Integrate Social Into Your Website
To boost your online presence and promote your brand, you need to blend your social media into your website. You can follow these steps to fully include social media on your brand's website.
- Integrating social sharing buttons on your website is the simplest way of blending your social profile into your website.
- Include direct links to your social media handles from your website and again from your social media profiles back to your website.
- Add options for social media sharing buttons on your blog posts.
- Social sites such as Facebook and Google Plus enjoy a high web authority. Hence the links on these social sites are often considered higher-quality links. Even if your social profiles are relatively new, they will start ranking well in the SERPs just because social networking sites such as Facebook have overall high authority.
- Allow users to sign-up and login using social logins. By adding this feature to your website, you can give a better user experience and will also experience an increase in registration conversions.
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Encourage External Inbound Links
You can also use social media to your advantage to encourage more external sites to link to your website and its content. Further, to gain increased authority on Google, the more diverse external links you get, the better it is.
To make it happen, you need to post consistently high-quality and engaging content on your social channels. You should rigorously promote your content once you start posting it consistently by sharing it into existing threads and discussion forums where there are high chances of discoverability.
Doing this exercise will maximize your external link sources and also help you emerge as an authoritative thought leader in your domain.
Image Source: Monster Insights
Use Keywords In Your Social Content
You need to align your industry-related keywords and social media content to give maximum exposure to your social media profiles. Keywords play an essential role in improving search results. If you are not optimizing your social profiles for the right keywords, you need to devise a better social media strategy.
You should smartly structure your keywords and target key phrases into the details of your social profiles and social media pages, such as page URLs or company info. Remember to add it in a very natural way; else, you risk looking promotional and spammy. Adding foundation-level keywords into your page will help you gain visibility in keyword searches on Google as well as rank better within the social network searches.
Use carefully selected keywords in your posts and hashtags when sharing content on social media. This practice will help you to increase the visibility of your brand and also increase your ranking in the social search results.
Sometimes, a carefully crafted hashtagged post can work like magic for you and makes your post and account more searchable. Again, using trending hashtags and relevant keywords will help a follower find your profile and find more of your similar kind of content. If they find it engaging, they may click through to your website directly. Hence, you cannot afford to ignore keywords when creating your social content.
Merry coffee to all, and to all a good night. 💚— Starbucks Coffee (@Starbucks) December 24, 2021
Optimize Your Posts for Searches
To extend the reach and visibility of your social media content, you should optimize your posts for social searches. You need a strong anchor text for your post to increase its engagement. It can be a well-designed infographic, a link to a detailed case study, an article, or a video.
You should make the title of the content short, descriptive, and attention-grabbing. You should frame your title such that it is well-optimized for a specific type of search.
You can also add some seasonal keywords in the title to climb up the ladder in the Google search results. Google also favors the most popular social updates by displaying them at the top sections of its SERPs.
Further, you can use relevant hashtags in your content to promote it in a better way.
Know more about Instagram SEO Hacks To Boost Your Discoverability
Grab a Subway® Catering Bundle™ and sit back, relax, and win the holiday.— Subway® (@SUBWAY) December 17, 2021
Ease The Sharing Process
Shareable content indirectly makes way for more traffic. The more shares for your posts, the more overall reach it has. Shareable content can help your business rule all the social media platforms and, in turn, attract success.
Relish In The World Of Hashtags
Hashtags give people the power to search your brand online across any platform. Whether it is categorizing the social media posts or stumbling on trending topics, hashtags have the ability to make your business more visible. #MoreProfits
Hashtags aid in the discovery of content. Instagram posts with hashtags have 12.6% higher engagement than posts without hashtags. However, no one likes to come across a post that is filled with hashtags. This detracts from a post's genuine sense. That's why make a habit to adopt optimal usage of hashtags in your social media posts.
So, the question here is how many hashtags should you include in your post? Well, it depends on the platform. It has been found that one or two hashtags are sufficient on Facebook and Twitter. A decline in involvement has been connected to using more. Using fewer than ten hashtags on Instagram is a brilliant tip to follow.
Know more about 300+ Best Hashtags For Instagram In 2022
Optimize Your Social Media Accounts
Brands do everything to make their website look attractive. But what about social media profiles? Nowadays, social media platforms have become the second website for brands. One other vital element to make your profile searchable is to optimize your social account. Everything should be in place, from every detail about your business to daily posts.
Add a profile picture, your business description, customize your profile URL. You can also add hashtags to your bio and descriptions. You will surely increase the traffic you receive in a day's time.
Know more about The Elements Of A Successful Social Media Profile/Page
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Analyze And Measure The Success On Social With The Correct Metrics
B2C marketers have said that social media analytics is the top technology they use to manage their marketing efforts.
There's one main thing to keep in mind when you are assessing your effectiveness on social: Don't be fooled by vanity metrics. Likes and views are essential, but they are not the only metric that matters in SMO.
You may want to look at other important metrics such as how many sales are being driven by social media, how much traffic you are getting to your website from socials, and how much meaningful engagement you are getting from the audience.
Engagement matters more than likes and follows.
Meaningful engagement could be different from shares, reviews, user-generated content, and link clicks.
What benchmarks are "vanity metrics," and what benchmarks are essential KPIs (key performance indicators) that will vary depending on your goals.
Likes and follower counts don't always tell the full story.
With a smart social media reporting tool such as Statusbrew, you can:
- Deep dive into each social media marketing aspect and measure every metric with millimeters with accuracy using 180+ industry-rich metrices
- Create your own social media marketing reports within a few clicks with several ready-made reporting templates
- Build your own report with endless customization options using widgets
- Export and share them live reports with your team members and clients
Trust us; it's much simpler than what it sounds.
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Statusbrew is an all in one social media management tool that supports Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin, YouTube, and even Google My Business.