Why It Pays To Go Social

The state of online marketing continues to evolve with search algorithm changes being a key driving force. One of the most common mistakes businesses make in their online visibility campaigns is to focus solely on search engine optimization or SEO.

And while a large number of businesses do maintain social media accounts, businesses do so as a perfunctory gesture. If your businesses is not taking full advantage of the benefits of social media — not just Twitter and Facebook, but also other sites like Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, and, depending on the business you’re engaged in, Yelp and TripAdvisor — you’re missing out on a lot of things.

A survey conducted by Ascend2 (a research firm specializing in marketing and marketing automation) among 600 companies engaged in online marketing campaigns sheds light on the impact of social media on SEO. In the survey, 15% of the companies viewed their online marketing as successful. Thirty-eight per cent of this group view the use of social media as a difference maker in their overall campaign. Contrast this with the 18% of companies who found their overall SEO campaign as wanting in results; of this group, 50% admitted to not using any form of social media at all.

But why should you even bother with social media?

The use of social media has a multiplier effect on your SEO efforts. As your target audience share your content, be it a blog post, video or infographic, your brand and online presence is reinforced.

Social media is also a key driver in offline sales. It is an established fact that customers do their research online, but a great number of people still have to embrace online shopping. Most people still do prefer to shop at a brick-and-mortar establishment. Social media allows your business to take advantage of this as search engines give emphasis on delivering results that are relevant to a searcher’s location. Here, it pays to give attention to local review sites which can impact the perception of your company or establishment.

How people perceive you online can either reinforce your positive image or destroy it. But how does social media tie up with your SEO efforts? When online searchers type in a keyphrase, they do not simply click on the website that’s on top of the search page results. Often, they will take into account the reviews former customers have made. And Google and other search engines also give considerable weight on this in terms of the trustworthiness of your site.

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