People no longer blindly trust everything they see or hear. They want “social proof” and validation of their choices.
In today’s age of ubiquitous connectivity, many businesses have implemented a variety of online marketing efforts to attract new customers and increase overall sales. Unfortunately, results can vary significantly because tools are only as good as the expertise of the person using them.
The lure of the “next big thing” can create online marketing inefficiencies when companies try to be a marketing “jack of all trades and master to none”.
Consider These Social Network Growth Statistics:
- Google sites handle about 100 billion searches each month (Search Engine Land)
- YouTube hosts nearly 14 billion videos (comScore)
- Facebook is now over 1 billion users (Facebook)
- Google+ has over 500 million users (Google)
- Twitter has over 550 million accounts (Twitter)
- LinkedIn is at 225 million users (LinkedIn)
- Pinterest grew 4,377% in 2012 and continues to expand with 25 million users (TechCrunch)
Evolution Just Sped Up
Not only do you have to evolve and adapt, you’ve got to do it quickly. The way people communicate, socialize, discover and purchase has changed dramatically. The ability to solve problems and enrich lives is now within the reach of any business who cares to grab this chance…and they will also make a lot of money in the process.
But you need to be aware of the ways in which social signals can influence search engine rankings. While no one but Google’s programmers knows for sure, we can state with reasonable certainty that there’s a strong link between the two.
Google serves a huge client base successfully because they have gained trust and maintained it over the years. People come back to Google because they find answers to their questions. For free.
The minute people lose trust in Google and find another, more trusted search engine, Google’s financial backbone will be broken. That’s why Google’s management team is obsessed with one thing above all else: users’ ability to find what they came for, regardless of where they are or how they access the Web.
That’s a complex task. How do they manage it? Relevancy.
Google listens carefully to users. Observes what they do. Learns from their interactions and conversations on social sites. By understanding user intent, they can serve up the most relevant solutions.
Keywords in text can be indicators of relevancy. Links to a page can be signs of popularity. But the signals that emanate from social media interactions allow Google to understand relevancy and popularity on a whole new level.
It’s an SEO + Social Media + PR win.
When you synchronize your social marketing campaigns with your most important keywords, your audience will use those words to research your business, find you on the top of Google, see other social signals (like PR articles, news stories, social media profiles, ratings and more)… and begin to trust you.
Today’s approach must change to survive tomorrow’s major economic changes.
So what’s a business owner or marketer to do?
Key Takeaways for Businesses and Marketers
- Build trust with your customers and offer a quality service and products.
- Focus on “people building.” Develop a network of fans who are active on social media and spread word about you and your brand.
- Make your content relevant and fascinating to your audience. Being mediocre will get you nowhere.
- Quality content is King! This is content marketing 101; write content that solves your audiences’ problems and pain points, and they will keep coming back for more.
- Get people to engage and share (recommend) you. That provides links and will be a better long term strategy because of the social signals generated.
- Appeal to logic. Draw upon statistics, credible sources, reasonable arguments and inherent rationale of a situation to get more people to buy in.
- Go viral. Get many shares on social media. Make news about your brand spread — fast.
One of the biggest imperatives for business owners is to evolve our way of doing business to fit tomorrow’s altered digital ecosystem. Offering a better service and content, integrating your online and offline strategy, and harnessing the power of social media and PR to the tested and proven power of SEO can bring the best results.
This applies equally to large and small businesses. In the long run, how big you are will not matter as much as how rapidly you can evolve.
A key element of evolution within a digital ecosystem like ours is building rich, vibrant networks of friends, fans, followers and customers.
Evolve…Get on Top…Stay Relevant