Social Media Optimization

Introduction to SMO:

Social Media Optimization (SMO) or Social SEO is the method of social media activity with the intent of attracting unique visitors to website content. Social media optimization is related to search engine marketing, but differs in several ways, primarily the focus on driving traffic from sources other than search engines, though improved search ranking is also a benefit of successful SMO.

There are two categories of SMO methods:

  • Social media features added to the content itself, including: RSS feeds, social news and sharing buttons, user rating and polling tools, and incorporating third-party community functionalities like images and videos
  • Promotional activities in social media aside from the content being promoted, including: blogging, commenting on other blogs, participating in discussion groups, and posting status updates on social networking profiles

Advantages of SMO:

The real benefit of optimizing your site for social media is it inspires you to create excellent, keyword-rich content, which in turn can help build your online and offline brand, increase quality inbound links over time, make you a subject matter expert, and expose your content to thousands of new visitors. It reinforces what you should be working on through your search engine optimization campaign.

  • Primary and Secondary Traffic: Primary traffic is the large amount of visitors who come directly from social media websites. Secondary traffic is referral traffic from websites which link to and send you visitors, after they come across your content through the social sites.
  • High Quality Links: Becoming popular on social news websites like Digg or Reddit will get you a large number of links, some of which may be topically relevant, some not. A good story can realistically acquire a large number of high quality editorial links, most of which cannot be easily bought.
  • Acquiring Natural Links: Not only do you get natural links without any discernible pattern but your website is also exposed to large groups of people in a spontaneous fashion. This differs from paid advertising which has overt commercial overtones.
  • Its defensible: Once successfully mastered, social communities can be a great source of web traffic which also includes a lot of quality traffic. While you can’t easily increase your search engine traffic, social media traffic can be very easily controlled through strategic marketing.
  • Its low-cost/high returns:If done by you, costs are limited to only time and perhaps the expenses involved in hiring a Social Media Consultants firm. The benefits will often exceed the cost. It would take you thousands of dollars to buy many links whereas social media has the ability to give you that for free.

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