SEO & Social – Working Hand in Hand
In an omnichannel environment, marketers are continually faced with the complexity of streamlining their efforts in order to give the consumer a cohesive brand experience. And so the natural collision of experiences across channels has shifted the marketing organization from one of silos to one of greater synchronization. Particularly in the agency setting, it’s critical for the different practices to align in strategy, even if the connection isn’t always so obvious in the beginning.
Take SEO and social media, for example. The modern notion of search engine optimization is a far cry from what we used to think of as a simple focus on keywords, or a technically sound website. Aside from the constant algorithmic and SERP changes, our enhanced understanding of the consumer has caused a drastic change in mindset of what makes “good SEO”. With more of an emphasis on search intent and engaging content experiences, the job of an SEO has not only become much more complex and involved, but also about understanding how his or her efforts fits into the overall omnichannel brand experience.
So where do the correlations lie between organic search and social? The two are likely more connected than you might at first realize – and so we’ve given an overview here of some of the ways SEO and social media marketers can integrate, and in turn amplify their efforts.
Social platforms and keyword/topic research
If we follow the logic that the modern day customer has changed how and where he/she searches, then we must also alter our definition of the traditional search engine. As SEOs we most often optimize for visibility on Google – and to a lesser extent Bing – but there are many more search boxes out there that customers use to find what they need. Most, if not all social platforms today have a highly developed search feature, allowing end users to connect more seamlessly with their content of choice.
In fact, some might actually prefer Facebook or Twitter for search, because they’re already spending so much time on these platforms – why leave if they can find it all there? And in the case of Pinterest or Instagram, where visual content dominates, hashtag research can be a critical method for both achieving greater audience reach and creating content that really sticks.
Social listening and content discovery
Another valuable strategy for SEO is to think like a social media listener. Social listening has become a quintessential tool for social media marketers, particularly when it comes to figuring out the right messages to engage customers – it’s why you hear more and more about tools like Sprinklr or Hootsuite, which marketers use to stay ahead of the conversation.
SEO marketers can use social listening as a way to identify emerging keywords that may not be found using more traditional keyword tools. And for content marketers that often already work hand in hand with the SEO teams, focusing in on what people are searching for or talking about on social media platforms cant lend further insight into the types of content, and even language that’s most appealing to different customers.
Whether they’re product-related, customer service-related, common pain points or more general industry topics, conversations on social media can shed light on what customers are genuinely feeling about a brand. SEO and content marketers can use the insight from these conversations to shape their content from the start – making it more much relevant and timely to the different points of the customer journey.
Social teams and content amplification
While the use of social signals in Google’s algorithm is an endless and unwinnable debate, there is no doubt that social media can aid in amplifying content so that it achieves a vaster reach than through SEO means alone. After implementing a social listening strategy and analyzing search behavior and keywords across different platforms, SEOs can then turn to social media teams to help devise an effective content distribution plan. Rather than merely publishing and sharing content on social platforms one time, social teams can help identify the right cadence, messaging, and post-types for that content. Ultimately, it gives SEOs and content marketers the chance to not only offer the right content to the right audience types, but also in the appropriate environment.
In today’s marketing world, it’s clear that the consumer will continue to drive constant and rapid changes – particularly in how they interact with brands online. Integrating teams like SEO and social can not only benefit the customer’s experience of a brand, but it also allows the organization to measure its impact through a more complete and integrated view. If you haven’t yet thought about syncing up your SEO and social efforts, you’ll definitely want to start now!