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6 Vital Recommendations For The Social Search Era

Now more than ever before, social media marketing is ready to go to the next level. Gaining massive popularity in recent years, the industry has grown in leaps and bounds much to the appreciation of all stakeholders. As a firm show of confidence in the medium – the two biggest search engine platforms, Google and Bing have both integrated social intelligence into their algorithms.

At the beginning of 2012, Google, affectionately referred to as the “King of the Web”, unveiled their landmark social search integration known as “Google Plus Your World”. A few months later in the same year, Bing followed with the release of a new version of their search program, fully integrated and in the company’s own words, able to “complement the standard search results”. Early this year Facebook, the largest social media website in the world, announced its social search engine.

This new development has many implications for all players in the search engine and social media marketing sub industries. The change will require a new paradigm shift when it comes to the field of search engine marketing.

Below are a few views worth considering:

  • Search engines will give precedence to content shared on any of these platforms. Google Search platform currently has about 67% of the United States markets share and is approaching the 90% mark in many countries across the globe, according to data from Yahoo Finance. This means a Google+ profile must be prioritized on the top of your search marketing scale of preference;
  • Over 1 billion search queries occurred in 2012 on Facebook alone. It was projected by eMarketer that Facebook users will reach the 1 billion milestone in 2013, but this number has already been surpassed (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/number-active-users-facebook-over-years-214600186–finance.html). Again, this platform must be on the top of the list of strategy planning. If your line of business is B2B focused, then your strategy should be biased more toward LinkedIn. According to Earnest Agency, LinkedIn is the second largest source of vendor content for B2B buyers (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V6Q34ID2n1Q);
  • Search marketers will need a fully integrated approach to internet marketing. Here, understand that social media and search engines are not substitutes for each other. Rather, social media is more of natural extension of search engines;
  • Keyword optimization on your social media company profiles is a good move. This should not be any different from the way you optimize your web pages. Target 3 to 5 of your important or best ranked keywords for your social profiles;
  • Maintaining a consistently active social media profile will help you build long term relationships with social influencers and ultimately improve the chances of content sharing;
  • Managing social media is a very time consuming task. About 70% of marketers admit to this challenge. (http://www.marketingcharts.com/wp/direct/most-companies-finding-social-medias-impact-tough-to-measure-23213/). Many small businesses have virtually abandoned their company profiles because of time and/or resource constraints. With this new social search integration, it becomes more imperative to manage your social media efficaciously. In order to manage, there is the  very real need to measure the progress of your efforts – you cannot manage what you cannot measure. There are many software tools for this purpose. These tools are able to aggregate all social media platforms under one roof for ease of management.

Author Bio: Dan Boateng is SEO and Analyst at Markets Online, a digital marketing agency based in the South African city of Johannesburg. – (http://marketsonline.co.za)

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