At one time, all you had to do to get good placement in the SERPs and draw in tons of traffic is to place the right keywords in your blog posts and web content. In more recent times, the best strategy for most was to combine all of that off and on-site SEO with well tested and thought out PPC campaigns.
Today, search engine marketing is becoming more time consuming and confusing for some. On and off-site SEO is still very important and PPC campaigns have their place, but there is also a huge emphasis now placed on marketing through social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
These sites are visited by millions of people every day and there are even many people who could be considered addicted to some of the sites. These social networking junkies will check in with their Facebook accounts several times a day with many receiving instant notifications through their cell phones when something is posted to their page. Even more are on Twitter off and on throughout the day through their cell phones.
Facebook is the most popular social networking site being used by marketers right now because it has a “like” feature that allows users to scope out businesses, products and services that they like and broadcast it to their friends. When a user finds a business page and clicks the “like” button the business gets listed on the like page of that user, but a notification that the “like” button was clicked goes out to all friends connected with that user.
Facebook friends pass these “like” links around and many people will click the links that their friends have liked. They will end up liking the business themselves in the end. This is virtual word-of-mouth and since there are incentives on Facebook for hitting the “like” button frequently, some users have thousands of likes listed on their pages and most actively look for things that their friends have liked.
Clearly, there is great potential for massive word-of-mouth advertising through Facebook and other social networking sites, but it isn’t as simple as some businesses think it is going to be. You don’t just slap up a Facebook page or open a Twitter account and wait for the likes to start coming in.
The work to be put in with social networking is much different from PPC advertising or just decking your website out with the best keywords. It is a combination of these forms of search engine marketing and blogging. You reach out to others and connect in a personal manner much like blogging, but you still need to pay attention to how you are presenting yourself so everything is professional and accurate according to what you have to offer.
If you take the time to create a good business page on Facebook and send out personal tweets through Twitter, you can push your marketing campaigns forward in an impressive manner. You will still need search engine optimization on your website and PPC may still be a big part of your strategy, but there is definite value to adding social networking sites to your plan as well.