By Liana “Li” Evans
Lately there’s been a lot of fuss about Social Media. There are conferences dedicated to it (such as SMX Social) and different aspects of if (such as the upcoming Blog World Expo). There are blogs dedicated to it such as Pete Cashmore’s Mashable, and there are portions of forums dedicated it to it as well like on Cre8asite Forums. All of these talk about Social Media and their individual parts, however it’s rare that any of these actually talk about incorporating Social Media as part of an overall strategy for online marketing.
To look as Social Media as a boost for you SEO, quite frankly, is foolish. Social Media touches so many other aspects of an online marketing strategy. It isn’t just about gaining links to raise your PR or even your ranking in the results on Google, Yahoo, Live or Ask. If that is the sole reason to use social media, you might want to start thinking about finding another “quick fix”. Soon enough, the search engines will probably take a hard look at the effect of social media and will start devaluing the power links from places like Digg have (there are some reports that this has already begun to happen).
So if the search engines start devaluing the links from these big well known social media hubs like Digg, Reddit, and StumbleUpon, what is and SEO to do. Well if you are just and “SEO” and not an online marketer, it’s off to make sure that website is fully optimized. If you are an online marketer, you probably have already seen the value beyond SEO for Social Media.
Beyond the mass amount of links that a successful social media campaign can provide there are several other areas that Social Media touches within an internet marketing strategy.
The list above demonstrates just a few ways that shows Social Media isn’t just a stand alone strategy. It needs to be worked into an full online marketing plan if you want to have the successful results you are hoping for. Understanding how every aspect interrelates is just as important with social media as it is with working PPC and SEO together. Having an experienced online marketer who understands all aspects is going to be key to your strategy, the last thing you want to do is leave this in the hands of an intern. So take the time and not only plan, but budget for social media, make it a part of the strategy all on its own, not just a part of SEO.