Archive for the ‘Social Media SEO’ Category

Content Originality for Maximum SEO

Friday, May 25th, 2012

The Internet currently exerts a massive amount of influence over our culture and with the dearth of information out there changing daily it can be quite challenging for web writers to consistently turn out original, fresh content. Unfortunately, the majority of web writers have little wiggle room in determining what subject they will write about—they receive assigned topics with mapped out keywords and must attempt to create something new and different.

With most web topics there’s a good chance that it’s been written about every way from Sunday. To add to the difficulty in creating an original piece of work, over and over, every article must also be carefully crafted for maximum search engine optimization. So how do you set yourself apart as a web writer, keep your competition on their toes and keep your readers coming back for more?  How do you stand out when you are asked to target the same old tired keywords and talk endlessly about the same topics?

What are the Benefits of Originality?

While most writers strive for originality, it can be difficult to come by in the Internet world. Your goals for every piece of content you publish are varied; you want to ensure your writing is noticeable among your readers and your peers. You also want to consistently offer your readers something of value. Whether you are writing for your own site or blog or for others, you want to ensure it is easy for readers to find your content while building a network of followers.

If your content strikes a chord with your readers they will be likely to link back to your writing, use you as a resource or share your content on social networks. From an SEO standpoint you want to ensure search engines consistently have something unique in your published words to index the site with, and finally you want to establish your own writing credibility as being an authority in your particular niche. Yes, these things are more difficult to accomplish when you are writing for someone else, but you should nonetheless keep them in mind and try to apply the same passion you would use in your own blog to the website you are writing for.

Try a few of these ideas to keep your writing fresh, interesting and creative:

  1. Work a different angle. While you may have written so many articles about Alzheimer’s that you are absolutely sure there is nothing more to be said, think about it from a different viewpoint. How about writing an article based on an interview with a grandchild who has lost their beloved grandparent to the fog of this dreaded disease? Or write about the practical aspects of keeping a loved one with Alzheimer’s safe in their own home. No matter how tired your subject seems, look at it from other angles and you might be surprised at the ideas you come up with.
  2. Check out the most common opinions about your subject—then write from the opposite viewpoint. Suppose you are writing for a health website and consistently write about the benefits of various supplements. Try looking at the subject from another angle and write about vitamins that certain people should never take or those which could potentially cause harm. There are always opposing ideas, so try to look at the less-popular viewpoint and write about that—whether you personally agree with the idea or not. High school debate teams are required to argue sides they don’t agree with in an attempt to make them think and keep them fresh and you can use this technique to your advantage.
  3. Research, but not to the point that you lose your own voice. Of course you have to research your subject, particularly if it is one you know little about. Do your research, but try to stick with unbiased information rather than those pieces with definite ideas about your subject. If you read too many other articles with a certain point of view you can find that attitude seeping into your own writing without you even being aware of it.

Finally, remember that while in the past some websites received good rankings despite fluff writing and borderline plagiarism, those days are over thanks to Google’s latest algorithms. Websites are now rewarded for original content which is informative, useful, well-researched and fresh. Keep your content exciting and the rewards will be both immediate and consistent.

Winning Strategies for Social Media Optimization

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

Social media is now more and more pervasive in brands, companies and organizations across the board. While there may still be a few holdouts, a significant number of companies are jumping on the social media bandwagon. The goal is to effectively use social media tools to reach the target audiences, and especially those audiences of small and medium companies in manufacturing, technical products and professional services.

Most of these companies are cautiously approaching the social media buzz by looking at the tools available and attempting to build a strategy based on those tools.  What businesses should probably be doing is narrowing down their chosen list of goals for their business, figuring out how social media fits into those goals, then working systematically through the goals, choosing first a goal which will improve merely one aspect of their business.

Implement a Social Marketing Program

You will definitely want to implement a social media marketing program for your business, however doing so without correctly optimizing your content is worthless. If you are applying blogs, videos, audios, Facebook pages, etc, into your social marketing program, but they cannot be found by using a search engine, then your hard work is for nothing. Social media sharing creates the kind of content which can significantly increase your brand visibility through search results—after all, the nature of social media encourages sharing, commenting, linking and participation which results in high numbers of relevant inbound links.

Detail Your Social Media Roadmap—Then Follow It

SEO and social media can only mesh well together when there is a framework for them to do so. You will first need to find your audience, making it your mission to know everything about them. You need to understand why they do what they do and what their preferences and methods of publishing and sharing include. Companies who have already been involved with the social web areas where there customers spend time are ahead of the game. You will next want to define your specific objectives, which may be driven by marketing or sales. In a rather indirect manner, social media can boost your links to website content with a result of improving your site’s traffic as well as your online sales.

Go With a Game Plan

Because people first discover content, then share it with others, the focus should be on content and social media interaction. Your keyword-focused strategy should definitely include publishing new content often, but will also involve promotion of your business and will make it easy for members of your community to share.  Make sure that you can measure your goals and objective, both the direct and the indirect.

Social Media Optimization

Social media optimization includes helping those who want to view your content be able to do so through widgets, apps or other entry ports for social media. The more “transportable” your content is, the more people will see it, read it and share it. While Facebook is certainly the primary place people share content—almost 40%–that leaves 60% being shared elsewhere, so don’t overlook other social media avenues.

Questions to Ask Yourself

In the end, when you are developing your strategies for social media optimization, consider which people you are interested in “talking” to, where you will locate them, what are they currently talking about, is it appropriate for us to join in that conversation, how can we be useful without being overtly promotional, what value can we provide, and how can we earn their undying trust?  While some of these questions will not be answered until you have begun interacting in social media conversations, your main goal will be to read and react in such a way that you are soon viewed as an authority in your field, and a highly useful resource.

Key SEO Strategies to Promote Your Law Firm through Facebook

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

If you use Facebook strictly for personal social interaction, you may wonder why you would want to promote your business through Facebook as well as how SEO relates to social media sites. In the very recent past, business pages on Facebook have become almost like another Home Page. Unfortunately, it is getting harder and harder to do a thorough job of social media marketing if you don’t’ take search engine optimization into account. It does little good to jump headfirst into the social media marketing program without optimizing your Facebook page so it can be easily found in a search. If your site cannot be found, you have lost a golden opportunity to reach the readers who are specifically looking for you. As we all know, Google changes its search algorithms quite often, yet there are still a few tips which remain solid that can help you fully optimize your Facebook page.

Think Long and Hard About Your Facebook Page Name

If you keyword stuff your title with relatively generic keywords, then your potential Facebook fans may believe your page is spam and hide all your carefully crafted updates. They may also not be enthusiastic about sharing your Facebook page with others which is the lifeblood of Facebook SEO. Even if you discount Google, Facebook disables updates from Pages which appear to have a generic name, so it could be much more effective in the long run to simply use your business’s real name as the title of your Facebook page. Further, once you’ve settled on a name, leave it be, since modifying the name in the future can cost you valuable SEO points.

Use Your “About” Box Wisely

Since Facebook limits you in the amount of content which can be placed on your Wall tab, it can greatly increase your SEO when you place unique, keyword-dense text toward the top part of your page, using the “About” box to place it in. Utilize each Facebook information tab to incorporate your contact information, company overview, products you sell or services you offer, and your local address.

Always Include Relevant Links in Your Status Updates

Google hands out rewards for those pages that provide truly relevant links. You can either provide a URL which will take your reader directly to the website when they click on it, or attach a link, which is actually more effective in boosting your keyword density. Post text links to your Facebook page from the “outside” and you will get a good Page rank boost in the same way inbound links give you a boost. Facebook provides a badge which says “Find Us on Facebook” to all users, so be sure and post this badge on your website.

Make Use of Photos with Captions and Events

You should always strive to keep your content fresh and intriguing, so when you post photographs, use your SEO to the maximum level, and add keyword rich captions. When you post events, take the extra time to include both text and relevant keywords into the field where you post the description of the event. People love seeing new photos, so use that to your advantage.

Finally, urge your friends and fans to comment and “like” your content since this process causes FB to link their name back to their profile page. Once those pages are indexed, Google sees reciprocal links between your Page and your fans—a process which will grow over time and give you big rewards in the form of organic SEO. Look beyond the social nature of Facebook and use it to boost your business and increase your visibility.

The Best Reasons for Your Law Office to Have a Facebook Page

Sunday, October 24th, 2010

More and more businesses, both large and small are turning to Facebook in order to create an additional online presence, as well as giving their customers a less formal platform with which to engage. Even if you are a true Facebook addict on your personal time, you may wonder how Facebook can be successful for your law firm. Considering that the average Facebook fan logs on a minimum of six hours per month, there are many ways Facebook can increase your legal website’s exposure in the most positive ways imaginable. Some of them include:

  • Search engine optimization is very positively impacted by your firm’s Facebook page. Once your law firm has an up and running Facebook page, it will show up high in the search results for your business because Facebook lists pages on the individual users’ public search listings—therefore each user who “likes” your firm’s Facebook page instantly adds another link back to that business page. This process can provide numerous links back to different areas of your legal website, thus dramatically improving the search rankings of your site.
  • Facebook can facilitate communication between you and your potential client by updating your firm’s Facebook page to let clients know about a new service from your firm. The members of your group then comment about your new legal service, thus opening a positive dialogue, and engaging potential clients. Facebook also allows for customized applications on your firm’s Facebook page, which could include things such as “join our mailing list.” This allows you to add potential clients to your e-mail marketing program sending them out interesting and informative articles each month.
  • The personal communication which takes place on your firm’s Facebook page can be invaluable in giving you feedback regarding your firm’s services. You can see firsthand what clients have to say about your services, which in turn allows you to resolve customer issues and gain valuable feedback you might never have been aware of before. The kind of information you receive from clients can advance your market research efforts and allow you to improve your customer service. Because Facebook’s members choose to become so, you can keep in constant contact with new, old or potential clients through uploading content whenever you want. This content shows up on your client’s newsfeeds, giving them information about your firm in a much less intrusive manner—your clients may even look forward to new content being added!
  • Facebook business pages can be a wonderful addition to your online business presence, and can be a sort of less-formal extension to your firm’s website. The Facebook page drives increased traffic to your firm’s website and with numerous links back to your regular website Facebook becomes yet another way your potential clients can find you.
  • You will gain invaluable information about your clients, including graphs and stats on the types of users your Facebook page attracts, whether they are male or female, ages, locations and other demographic data as well. The average Facebook user has 130 friends in their network, therefore if one of them “likes” your Facebook page, there is the potential for all 130 of their friends to see that, causing them to investigate and look at your Facebook page themselves. If you attempt to do the math on such a phenomenon, you will see that the “reach” of Facebook is literally beyond your imagination.
  • Having “Fans” makes you business more credible and legitimizes your business.
  • Your comments, articles, etc can be distributed to others at no cost to you.

Facebook offers law firms the chance to show a different, less “buttoned-up” side of themselves than what is typically shown in their legal website. Your firm can post photos and videos of a staff function, or an attorney’s television or court appearance. It can show the softer, more personal side of the attorneys who make up the law firm, and give potential clients an insight into the firm they might not otherwise have.

So let’s review: Having a Facebook page for your law firm’s website has a huge reach, is completely customized and branded, is almost as powerful a marketing tool as your website itself….and it’s free!

FREE ADVICE (from real experts, no sales people) concerning Facebook and other social media management services for law firms, lawyer, and legal companies. We also offer custom Facebook design and programming.  Call (769) 218-6099 for free advice.

Google Responds to Yahoo/Bing By Testing "Shared By" Social Networking Activity in Search Results

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

Google is beta testing a new feature of their search results page inresponse to the recent announcement made by Yahoo/Bing.  On October 16, 2010, Yahoo/Bing announced that they have included within their search engine results pages, a link to the number of users that have shared that particular link, content, or web page with other web users.  In response Google integrated in “social shares” into their main search results today as a beta test. In the image to the right you are able to see a screenshot example of this Google beta test.  Note the “Shared by 20+” link that follows the website link along with the number of related articles.

For now the “shared by” links will only appear on Google’s main search results page. What is interesting is what happens when you click on the “shared by” link.  When you click the link you are brought to Google Updates, where real-time sharing activity reporting is displayed. Google has not disclosed whether or not this will be a permanent feature as of yet.

If you have questions as to how this will impact your law firm search engine optimization, call (769) 218-6099 for a free consultation about Social Media Search Engine Optimization for law firms.