Almost everybody has heard of search engine optimization, but the idea of social media optimization is just starting to catch on. Back in 2006 marketing blogger Rohit Bhargava first coined the term, defining it this way:
"The concept behind SMO is simple: implement changes to optimize a site so that it is more easily linked to, more highly visible in social media searches on custom search engines (such as Technorati), and more frequently included in relevant posts on blogs, podcasts and vlogs."
For more on Rohit's five initial rules for SMO see his influential post.
Taking what we've learned from our own experience and borrowing from other popular SMO strategies out there, we've put together the quick list of tips for SMO.
- As we wrote about in a previous post on Blog Productivity Tools and Strategies we use HootSuite to broadcast status updates simultaneously across our Twitter and Facebook pages. It has a built-in URL shortener and is a great time saver
- Adding follow buttons to your homepage makes it easy for your site visitors to connect to your social media, or take it a step further and add share buttons to each individual post.
- Include a built-in Twitter feed on your homepage and increase your social media visibility. You can do this by including a pre-built widget or by creating a custom feed like ours.
- An RSS feed is a great way to tell your readers about your latest posts, it makes your blog directly accessible from any RSS reader.
- Take part in the community. Post comments on other blogs, and if you can, link back to your blog.
- Respond to your readers. When someone leaves a comment, reply back and try to add value with your response.
- Use your social media status updates to promote your latest post.
- Lastly, when creating content for your social media channels, try posting different types of content that's easy to share. This can be anything from videos, podcasts, pictures and slideshares, be creative!
I hope we've provided some good tips for kick starting your social media presence. A successful Twitter feed, Facebook page or blog isn't something that can be achieved overnight; but being consistent, creative and efficient can help you gain traction in an information saturated world.
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