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Social Media Marketing vs. SEO: Which Will be More Important?

Jason Roy

You’re probably aware of how significant social media is becoming on the internet and how the popularity of Facebook is giving the monster of Google a run for their money. Considering this, you might be wondering what the significance of the social media explosion will have for the optimization of your website. Should you be committing so much time and energy into optimizing your site for Google, or should you be directing more attention towards gaining credibility with the social media sites?

If you’ve been wondering about this, the following information will help you to understand how the social media explosion will affect your business and the popularity/credibility of your website.

Marketing Trends vs. Marketing Principles

Since the internet has been exploding in popularity, there have been many trends that have affected the way that internet marketing works.  Just about everyone knows that PPC marketing isn’t the same as it was ten years ago and that the same is true for article marketing, video marketing, search engine optimization, link building, and email marketing. In fact, trends on the internet change and evolve so fast, that you have to fun just to keep up with them. But there is an easier way to make sure that your internet marketing is always effective and that your website optimization is always relevant: understanding the principles of good marketing.

Unlike trends, the principles of marketing are based on human buying psychology and consumer behavior. These principles have not changed for hundreds of years and they likely never will. For example, consumers are always going to do business with companies they trust, who position themselves as being knowledgeable experts and who provide consistent value. So as long as your website and your internet marketing is based on these principles, you’ll have no need to worry about keeping up with changing trends such as Google’s mysterious algorithms, the potential confusing rules of SEO, and things of that nature.

So what does this mean when it comes to the growing popularity of social media marketing vs. optimizing your site for the search engines only? It means that as long as you manage your online business building and marketing strategies according to the right principles, your site will always be relevant and valuable.

SEO, Social Media and the Principles of Good Marketing

In spite of the technical differences between the search engines and social media sites, both of them are built around the same principle: connecting consumers with companies that are providing valuable content and products that ad genuine value. For example, if a customer does a search in Google, MSN, or Yahoo, they are looking to connect with a site that has the content that they’re looking for.  If they’re interested in purchasing, they’re going to be searching for ways to verify the value and credibility of a company or a product. When people connect with these things, they are happy…when they don’t, they’ll go to look for it somewhere else.

This is the most important thing to keep in mind as you’re optimizing your site for the search engines. For instance, link building which is based on making connections and providing your potential customers with valuable content will always be more important than a super-fast, numbers focused link building approach. When creating content for your website or for offsite article marketing, your primary focus needs to be on creating content that adds value for your visitors and positions your company or you as the expert in your industry.  The other approach would be to create as many articles as possible, without as much emphasis on quality, and to treat the process as strictly a numbers game.  

When optimizing your site for a set of keywords, it’s more important that your content is relevant and valuable than to saturate it with keywords in order to please the search engine spiders. In other words, it’s not about pleasing the search engines…it never has been and it never will be. It’s about pleasing consumers, and as long as you do this, your site will be valuable in the internet market place. The same principles will apply when someone logs onto a social media site, they’re in search of content and connections which are going to add value to their life.

 So as long as your website and your marketing are focused on making these kinds of connections, you’ll be valuable with both the search engines and the social media sites.

A Three-Step Strategy for Both SEO and Social Media Marketing

1. Consistent Content Creation

Content creation is a consistent commitment for any business that hopes to be valuable on the internet. Even if you have thousands of customers who visit your site every week, if they don’t see something new they’ll eventually stop visiting. Make it a goal to have one quality article posted on your website or blog every week. You can create links to this on social media sites and article marketing sites in order to generate interest from new visitors as well.

2. Focus On Relationships

Whether you’re adding friends on Facebook, connecting with people on Twitter or interacting with people on a forum, it will always be more important to focus on building quality relationships than racking up hundreds of friends or following people on Twitter hoping that they’ll follow you back. It’s better to select a dozen key relationships and strengthen those instead of trying to add hundreds of friends or followers hoping they all come to your site. One way that you can do this is to provide links to the articles that you’re writing instead of simply trying to get people to look at sales offers.

This will position you as someone who is actually out to make a contribution and will set you apart from the thousands who are just promoting themselves.

3. Build a Feedback System

Being able to get feedback from your customers and the people who you connect with on social media sites is probably the most valuable feature of social networking.  It will help you to understand how valuable your content creation is to the people who really matter: your customers. This is another reason why it’s important to focus on relationships instead of playing the numbers game The more open your communication is with your customers, the more feedback you’ll get from them and the better you’ll understand their needs. You can then use this information to adjust your content creation and build a more relevant and valuable site.

Conclusion

As social media continues to grow, and as the rules of SEO change, remember that the most important thing to focus on is the principles of marketing: building trust with your visitors. As long as your content marketing, site structure, social media marketing, PPC campaigns, and other internet marketing and site-building strategies are based on these principles, you’ll have no problem adapting to the social media explosion or any new trends which arise.

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