|Social search is about networking and scratching each others back. Here are a few optimization tips.|
Over the past couple of years the social media sites like Wikipedia, Digg, StumbleUpon and so forth have created new venues for great content, tagging, traffic and link building. Tapping into them requires a different approach and here are a few tips to get you started.
1. Link out generously. Yes, I know that idea grips the heart of many an SEO with cold fear, but this is all a part of the viral social media culture. When you link out to good resources, whether it’s from your blog or social site account (MySpace, StumbleUpon, etc.), you’re scratching the backs of influential social media types so that, hopefully, they’ll return the favor when they see that link from you.
2. Have a friend submit. If you’ve got a story or article you’d like submitted to a site like Digg, have a friend with a trusted account submit it for you. Nothing will make your story crash and burn like submitting it yourself. That’s a no-no in the social media world.
3. Target your audience. For instance, here are the most active age groups for a few of the social sites:
4. Buy text links. I can already hear the SEOs moan! There’s a twist to this recommendation, however. Buy the text links to point to, say, your video to generate traffic. As long as the video, podcast or whatever is on one of the major media sites like YouTube, you’ll have no fear of being penalized by Google since the purchased link points to the media site and not your site or blog.
5. Check for backlinks. You want to know who’s pointing to you, don’t you? Google is notorious for giving skimpy backlink data, so check out Google Blog Search. It gives better results.
6. Protect your brand. Set up corporate profiles in popular social sites like MySpace and FaceBook. Besides providing good marketing and networking potential, you’ll prevent someone else from claiming that profile and pretending to be you.
7. Recommendations to get you started. YouTube, StumbleUpon, Wikipedia, Yahoo Answers, Digg, Yelp, Reddit, LinkedIn, Flickr, FaceBook, del.icio.us, MySpace, CraigsList Forums, Technorati, NewsVine.
By the way, LinkedIn is a great place to start, especially if you want to network for business, look for jobs and keep in touch with former co-workers. Feel free to check out Richard Burckhardt’s profile and add me as a connection. I’ll do the same. That’s what social media is all about!
This article is intended as a companion piece to S E O 101 and will be updated periodically.
See the entire S E O 101 series.
I go into more detail in my S E O 101 workshop, offered to web site owners and small businesses. Check this blog for more information or contact me to set up a custom workshop for your business group of five or more people in the Palm Springs area of Southern California. Travel is possible for large groups.