As time passes and social networks become more circular than ever, the thought should dawn on business operators and marketers alike that search engine optimization is becoming eerily similar to real marketing.
We all know the days of implementing as many keywords as possible into an irrelevant piece of content hoping to achieve higher rankings. Those days are gone. Now search marketing all about getting social and sharing worthwhile content with a desired audience.
People are searching in their World
We live in a great big World, but for the most part we stick to our small, personal circles. Google + holds a lot of cards in determining how a business can rank. Though not super new, Google’s Search Plus Your World remains a game changer. The feature, launched in January earlier this year, makes all the social activity on Google + directly valid in terms of search engine listings. It’s up to the user to have their search results tailored personally to them—but who wouldn’t want to be spoon-fed recommendations based around your own life?
After all, would you trust a stranger’s opinion over someone you know? When it comes to vacation recommendations, music and film buzz or the next online video sensation, you are interested in hearing from your friends and acquaintances before some random Joe on the web. Google’s Search Plus Your World is the first step in allowing users to delve deeper into their communities with one segregating click.
Profile = Business Card
Does anyone use business cards anymore? Probably short-sighted of me, I’m sure they do. However, these days what yours or your businesses online profile looks like probably reigns supreme. For major brands and operations, this step is obvious. But for the small, and/or local business owner, making sure your social network profiles are thorough and searchable is critical.
For starters, having your Google + Local page verified and optimized can do wonders for credibility to the search engines. Having a presentable picture on your profile sounds elementary, but can really grab eyes in the results page. And there’s no substitute for timeliness—if you can beat your local competitors to the chase (or Google +, social media in this matter) than the ball’s in your court. The search marketing industry is evolving back into its off-web counterpart with the dominant influence of social media platforms.
Build/Hold/Flourish Your Target Market
Whether you have a particular market you’re targeting or not, you won’t be able to hold them without fresh content. It’s verified that social signals (likes, shares, tweets, +1’s) help trigger higher rankings. Every business should be dedicated to building a following through the variety of mediums and platforms the web has to offer. I’m talking about videos, how-to guides, news blurbs, quirky blog posts, compelling articles, startling info-graphics; there is an unlimited ceiling web marketers have in projecting their unique voice onto hundreds, thousands or even millions depending on the business and the reach it has.
Quality content coming on a regular basis will hook readers whether they realize it or not. They’ll probably start following your businesses page and be fed content in the future as a result of personalized searches. The result of this system is brand awareness and customer rapport. To bring it all full-circle, the best practices of social media marketing and search engine optimization are evolving and merging. Together, they define a more unified approach that's emerging as a practice called web presence optimization.
So if you haven’t been following, joining Google + along with all the other social networks is essential for search marketing. Whether you have a local business or play a part in a massive corporation trying to appeal to a large target audience, Google + can play an integral part in both campaigns. Get connected for the sheer sake of not losing the edge to your competitor’s. Because chances are they’ll catch on sooner rather than later, leaving your business behind the curve.
This article was produced by blogger, SEO, and web marketer Kyle Blasco. You can connect with Kyle on Google+.