This guide is all about how you can utilise social media to boost your search engine optimisation performance. Social Media has become such a popular way to communicate directly and share and consume information that there is a goldmine of opportunities to leverage these networks for the research, relationship building and promotion needed to execute successful SEO campaigns.
We’ve separated the guide into four chapters which cover these four pillars of a white hat SEO strategy;
- Content Research & Creation – Content is the reason that people visit websites and its an important part of all modern SEO strategies. You can utilise social media to generate and test ideas, research your target market and even crowd source the content itself.
- Link Prospecting – Links are still the primary way that search engines determine which websites should rank where. Its not enough to simply ‘create great content,’ you need to be actively identifying your linking audiences and promoting your content to them. Social media profiles and discussions are great sources to identify the people and websites who might be interested in linking to your content.
- Relationship Building – Relationship building is time intensive and difficult to scale but the potential benefits are clear. Solid relationships with content creators and influencers in your industry will make link requests more effective and produce other opportunities such as collaborative content projects. Social media is all about facilitating new and existing relationships so its obviously going to be a useful tool for building relationships.
- Outreach & Promotion – To pull everything together and get results you need to promote your content and actually attract those links. Many people use social media as the primary channel for finding good content so it makes sense to promote your content on there. The ease of re-sharing on social media also means that your content can get passed from person to person and achieve a much wider distribution than your immediate network. Finally, social media can be used for outreach to specific, or a small group of, influencers to attract high powered shares and links.
The Ultimate List of Resources to Help you Leverage Social Media for SEO
Rather than reinventing the wheel, we’ve looked far and wide to find the best resources that illustrate and teach each of the techniques you can use to leverage Social Media for SEO. We’ve classified those resources with the following labels;
- [idea] – mentions or describes the technique
- [example] – gives a short example of the technique in use
- [case study] – gives a longer example of the technique being used and details on how
- [how to] – gives step by step instructions for using the technique
- [tool] – is a tool that makes using/performing the technique more efficient and effective
Content is a pillar of all modern SEO strategies. In this section you’ll learn how you can use social media to improve your content creation process including generating & testing ideas, research and creation.
Generating & Testing Ideas
Creating successful content these days usually requires a significant investment of time and resources. To avoid investing in content that ends up falling flat on its face, use these techniques to generate and test topics and gauge the response and impact before jumping on board completely.
You can learn a lot about a person or group of people by stalking them on social media. Perhaps its a little creepy but its also a great opportunity to tailor your content to your audience and help you achieve your objectives.
Crowdsourcing your content is great way to get some fresh perspectives and unique data as well as get more people involved which will help with promotion down the track.
We need to remember that its not websites that give links, its people. Social media profiles, posts and conversations are great places to look to identify the people behind relevant websites that you might like to get a link on.
While relationships are not essential for effective SEO, having strong relationships with others in your industry will make your link and share requests more effective and uncover other opportunities such as content collaboration projects.
For a bunch more ideas on how you can utilise social media to build your network, check out the ‘Content That Helps to Build Network‘ section of bulk.ly’s huge guide to social media post ideas.
One of the biggest benefits of having a large social following, as far as SEO is concerned, is that you have a ready band of people to help promote your content and magnify your message. The wider your content gets shared, the more likely it will be seen by people who have the means and motivation to link to you.
Outreach allows you to target specific websites and people to make your link building efforts more effective, because you can reach them on a personal communication channel (email) and tailor your approach to produce a higher conversion rate.
The wider your content gets shared, the more likely it is to be seen by someone with the means and motivation to link to you. Beyond link building, content promotion can also lead to more customers and exposure to achieve other business goals.
A Quick List of All Techniques
Use the ‘tweet’ links below to vote for your favourite technique.
- Analyse social posts to identify trending topics for SEO content [Tweet This]
- Use social media to identify common customer questions and create content to answer them [Tweet This]
- Test content on social media, tweak based on response then finalise [Tweet This]
- Analyse popular content in your industry to help generate topic ideas [Tweet This]
- Curate resources for content research using hashtags and external tools [Tweet This]
- Analyse your target audiences conversations to better tailor your content [Tweet This]
- Ask followers a question on social media and compile their answers in a blog post [Tweet This]
- Search in social profiles to identify relevant link prospects [Tweet This]
- Search and analyse social media posts to identify relevant link prospects [Tweet This]
- Qualify prospects using their social media profiles, posts, no. followers, engagement, shares [Tweet This]
- Build a Community around your brand to help content creation, promotion [Tweet This]
- Use social posting, private messaging, group postings etc. to build relationships [Tweet This]
- Tailor your outreach by first researching your targets social profiles [Tweet This]
- Use social media to facilitate outreach as an alternative to email [Tweet This]
- Optimise your content for natural/passive social sharing [Tweet This]
- Create content that encourages social sharing [Tweet This]
- Optimise your social media posts to maximise exposure, CTRs and shares [Tweet This]
- Leverage social media to build your email list then use it to promote content [Tweet This]
- Utilise social media advertising to spread your content to a wider audience [Tweet This]
We know there’s a lot to read here and that many of you are in a hurry, so here’s a short summary.
Social media can be utilised for SEO in three key ways;
- Data mining
- Generating & Testing Content Ideas
- Customer & Content Research
- Link Prospecting & Qualifying
- Direct Communication
- Creating Crowdsourced Content
- Building Relationships with Influencers, Communities and Other Potential Linkers
- Outreach to Potential Linkers
- Broadcasting Content
- Facilitating the Viral Spread of Content
- Facilitating the Natural/Passive Spread of Content
We’ve done our best to make this guide as comprehensive as possible but if we’ve missed a technique you know, suggest it in the comments below.