Search should be the first point of call for finding out whether your social media and content strategies are delivering ROI.
While some businesses have found it easy to attribute hard KPIs to social or content strategies, others still struggle, but with the link between them and search becoming inseparable, will it be easier to justify investment?
Or to flip the question into a demand or statement: If you find that your social media and content strategies aren’t having a positive impact on your natural search then you should go back to the drawing board because the two are becoming ever more entwined.
The need to understand how social media and search fit together is nothing new. We also know that the changes to Google over the past years, including the Panda and Penguin changes to the algorithm, are just the start of social potentially becoming a key signal for search results in the fututre.
We are already starting to see brands that are reaping the benefit of adopting these joined-up or multi-signal social CEO strategies. This week travel brand Kuoni explained how its work with LBi to seed sharable content on a wide variety of social networks was helping it double its traffic via natural search (nma.co.uk 23 July 2012).
Kuoni SEO and affiliate specialist Mark Fleming, said, “We leverage our content assets which include images and videos, and seed them on multiple social platforms, from Google+ to the lesser known ones like Jux.
“Kuoni.co.uk has never ranked as well as it does now since implementing this multi-signal approach,” said Fleming.
Also, now rather than simply acknowledging the two are like birds of a feather, we build a nest, let them procreate and then fly off into the world to do all the hard work for us (under our watchful eye).
We do this by getting clever with data and analytics. The key, as with the majority of social media lies in really understanding both your audience and the platforms that they operate in. Kuoni said it was currently seeding across a selection of sites including both the big players and niche sites.
A study by digital agency Stickyeyes, published on Econsultancy yesterday, shows an interesting set of data suggesting that Google+ correlates to high natural search rankings.
It’s an interesting set of data that, above anything else, shows that it may be time that brands start thinking harder about how search might influence the time and resource they place onto each network. When considering the ROI of social media, search should be top of the list.