June 19, 2014: One of the biggest challenges we hear about in the world of marketing is around the idea of silos. As companies grow, and new people and departments are added, it’s easy to become segmented and communication can become more difficult than it once was.
We end up finding the paid team working within the paid team, the communication team working within the communication team, the SEO team…well, you get it. As businesses (and marketers), we need to make sure we are breaking down these silos to see the bigger picture. We need to understand how each channel works, what is successful, and how we can use this information to enhance our own strategies.
Enter search and social.
With social now positioned as a legitimate marketing channel with genuine customer (and potential customer) interactions, there’s a lot of great information coming out of the social media department. We’re able to gain a better understanding of how people are talking about our industry, our product/service, and build genuine relationships with our customers and fans. With all of that data, it’s even more important that the social media team isn’t siloed and is sharing their knowledge with the search team, the content team, the email marketing team, etc.
We also the need these departments sharing their data with the social media team, including the SEO team.
Social can be a huge advantage for search marketers. It can help get your content in front of the right people, help drive links, and can even help you better understand the keyword landscape. But in order for those things to happen, there are a few things the social media team should know:
1. Social Media’s Impact on Search
One thing I’ve found is that when people know their actions are making a real, measurable impact on something, they are much more interested and invested. This applies to both life in general and to marketing.
In order to get the most from your business’s social media team, show them how their efforts are helping impact the business’ search performance and what they can do more of to help.
[Recent Google+ posts show up in a branded search]
Company location data has become increasingly important as search results have become more localized and personalized. Google+ is now responsible for local data and that data is being pulled into search results. Make sure you have as much information in there as possible.
Bing is personalizing search with Facebook and Google is personalizing search with Google+ (I’m just gonna go ahead and group Gmail, Youtube, Authorship, etc. into this). Your social team can help drive those connections and, in turn, help increase your company’s presence in search.
Keep your social team informed on what’s happening in the world of search and social integration and actually show them how their efforts can/are making a difference.
2. Target Keywords & Keyword Phrases
Your social media team already has a good idea of which keywords they should be monitoring but do they know which keywords they should be using in updates, bios, etc. for search purposes?*
Provide your social media team with a list of target keywords that you know people are using to find your business. Show them data from Webmaster Tools, Adwords, Analytics, and even updates from social networks. The more your team understands how people are looking for your product/service, the better they’ll be able to find and target potential customers.
In the example below, our friend Brian Wallace of Nowsourcing, was looking for a time tracking app on Twitter. The great thing was several times tracking apps responded. He didn’t mention any specific name or handle but their teams were clearly monitoring Twitter for that keyword/keyword phrase.
* I am a big believer that “search” now encompasses more than just Google, Bing, Yahoo…people are “searching” other places, including social, and as a business, you need to be able to be found in those places as well.
3. Target Websites & Authors
One of the biggest advantages of social is the ability to connect with and build relationships with customers, brand advocates, bloggers, reporters, etc. These are the people who can share your content, talk about your brand, and…wait for it…create links to your site!
Does your social media team know who or what sites you are trying to acquire links from?
Provide your social team with information on target sites, target authors, and any information about those people you may have. If they can start getting in front of those people and connecting with them, it will make your job much easier.
Integrate. Integrate. Integrate.
By keeping your social media team apprised of what you are doing and how their efforts go beyond just social, you are creating a better and more informed marketing program. With so many channels and new ways for customers to find your business, integrating efforts has never been more important.