Claim Your Social Media Optimization ChecklistTake this post’s advice with you in the form of a checklist to help you stay on track and succeed with SMO.
What Is Social Media Optimization?Simply put, social media optimization is the process of implementing changes to optimize a site so it can be more easily linked to, more visible on search engines, and more frequently included in relevant posts. It also entails the optimization of social media profiles themselves to make them more useful and easier to find. SMO is similar to search engine optimization in the sense that your goal is to maximize visibility and traffic to your site or blog from social media. Like SEO, SMO changes quickly and requires managers to be agile and proactive in order to do it correctly. Now that you know what SMO is, it’s time for what we’re sure you really care about...
Why Is Social Media Optimization Important?You have social media channels set up for your blog or business. You're posting content on a consistent basis (and you might even be using CoSchedule to help manage that process). There's always more you can be doing to make sure you're earning as much visibility on social media as possible (and we say that because we can always do more). Like with all things social media, once you stop moving, you start to sink. You have to keep active. Always crossing your T's and dotting your I's every single step of the way. More specifically, SMO is important because:
- Your social media profiles can rank for branded search terms, helping you hog more search result space.
- Paying attention to all the small aspects of SMO can add up and make a big impact.
- If you're not following these best practices, you may actually be hurting your social media presence and losing out on valuable referral traffic little by little.
- Increase the visibility of your social media profiles in searches.
- Drive more traffic to your blog or website from your social media platforms.
How To Make Your Blog Or Website Social Media-FriendlyThe first place to start with social media optimization is directly on your blog and/or website. This entails that you have a handful of items in place to make sure your site or blog displays content attractively when shared on social media. You'll also want to make sure it's easy and intuitive for users to share your content as well. You'll want to make sure your site or blog displays content attractively and is easy to share on social media.
Add Social Sharing Buttons To Your Site & Blog PostsIf your site or blog doesn't have them already, it might be time to add social sharing buttons. While there is some debate over the best placement for social media buttons on blogs, or whether people actually use them, they do make it easier for users to share your content. Need a plugin to add social sharing buttons to your blog?
Add Linkable Content To Your Static Website PagesBlog posts are inherently shareable on social media. If you didn't think your post was worth sharing, you probably wouldn't have written it in the first place. Static website pages are pages on your blog or website that are static (like an "About Us" or "service" page). It can be difficult to make static pages interesting enough for people to share. And that isn't because they aren't important. It's because there typically isn't much on those pages that make folks want to like, share, tweet, or pin them. What's the solution then? The solution is to add value to your static website pages with linkable content. That means adding valuable content that can easily be linked in social media posts. This provides something of value that people are likely to share with their followers. What can you add to your static pages to draw social media attention: adds value to a page and gives readers a reason to share it. You could even consider creating hub pages with a ton of downloadable content all in one place. Our own Resource Library is just one example of what this idea can look like in action.
Add Click To Tweet Buttons In Your Blog PostsAdding a click-to-tweet button in your blog posts can help give your content an extra push on Twitter. Pro Tip: Pull interesting quotes or statistics that readers will likely find interesting and put them in click-to-tweet boxes so your readers can share them quickly. ClickToTweet is a simple web service that lets you create click-to-tweet links that you can copy and paste into your posts. Alternately, you can also use the awesome Click-To-Tweet Wordpress plugin built by our very own team at CoSchedule. Here's what they look like in action:
Level up your #SMM with this killer social media optimization process via @CoScheduleClick To Tweet
Add Twitter Cards And Facebook Open Graph Markup To Your Website, Blog, And Blog PostsAdding Twitter Cards and Facebook Open Graph markup to your web pages and blog posts can help you control how they appear when they are shared by others online. Twitter Cards are simply a few lines of HTML that allow you to specify photos, videos, and other media that appear when a page is shared on Twitter. There are four different types of cards you can choose from:
- Summary Cards: These include a page title, description, image thumbnail, and an @ attribution to your Twitter account.
- Summary Card With Large Images: These are the same as Summary Cards, but with a bigger image.
- App Cards: These feature a direct download link for a mobile app.
- Player Cards: These include a media player for video or audio content.
How To Optimize Your Social Media Channels For Maximum VisibilityNow that we know what social media optimization is, and we understand why it's important, it's time to get down to brass tacks and start implementing some tactics and best practices. Let's get started with one social media platform (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, and Youtube) at a time.
How To Optimize For FacebookLet's get your Facebook page looking its best. Even if you've already filled out your profile, there is always room for improvement. Optimize Your Cover Photo There's more to having a good cover photo than just slapping something in there with your logo.
- Make your cover image 851 pixels wide by 315 pixels tall.
- Choose an image that clearly communicates what your blog or brand is about.
- If you want potential followers to give their email address or to visit your promotion that's currently running, consider swapping out your cover photo to promote it.
- Book Now
- Contact Us
- Use App
- Play Game
- Shop Now
- Sign Up
- Watch Video
- An email signup form.
- A customer service page.
- An app download.
- E-commerce page, or anything else that may be applicable.
- Use a visually appealing graphic with a snappy headline.
- Include a visual indicator pointing towards your CTA.
- Write a strong image description for your cover photo (If you'd like, you can even include another link there as well).
- Be comprehensive and include as much information as you can to help your audience.
- Make sure your biography includes relevant keywords (much like you'd use to describe your business on your website, or your About page on your blog).
- Be descriptive and show your personality.
How To Optimize For TwitterThere are a lot of ways to optimize Twitter as a traffic driver. Here are a few you can put into use right now. Write A Good Bio To Help Your Profile Get Found There's an art to writing a good Twitter bio, and it isn't easy to do in under 140 characters. Some things to keep in mind:
- Use descriptive words.
- Focus on telling people what your blog or company is about while emphasizing benefits to your audience.
- Remember to include relevant keywords in your bio. It will help you appear in internal searches on Twitter.
How To Optimize LinkedInThe value of LinkedIn has become more prevalent recently, and the platform is a must-have for B2B companies. Here are a couple tips to help draw attention to your profile. Share Content In LinkedIn Groups One great way to draw attention to your blog content on LinkedIn is to participate in groups. Now, we aren't suggesting you join a bunch of groups and spam them with your blog posts. Rather, make yourself a valuable member of those groups by engaging in genuine discussion. Then, when you have something that can legitimately answer a question or be of use to the group, go ahead and share it. Add Keywords To Your Bio Be thorough in completing your entire profile for your business. Incorporate keywords in your company description. If you write a quality description of your company, it's likely you'll include keywords relevant to your business or blog naturally. However, it's still a good idea to double check, and consider adding one or two phrases here and there at a minimum. Social Media Examiner's LinkedIn page offers a good example of a well-written bio (with relevant keywords in the specialty section):
How To Optimize PinterestPinterest is interesting from a social media optimization standpoint. It's a highly visual platform, but also one that comes with some unique SEO considerations. Plus, did you know you can now schedule Pins to Pinterest from CoSchedule? Make Your Pinterest Profile Public For Search Engines Make sure your Pinterest profile is set to public so search engines can find it (and potentially rank your posts in relevant search results). To do this, simply go into your account settings and switch Search Privacy to "No." If you'd like to keep certain boards private without blocking your entire profile to search engines, however, you can. Here's how: 1 ) Go to the board you'd like to set to private and click the Edit Board button: 2 ) Then, set that board to Secret: Simple as that! Follow Basic Pinterest SEO Best Practices Pins are also indexed within the site itself so people can find content through the internal search bar. SEO tips to help your boards and Pins get found:
- Include your keywords in your board names and descriptions, as well as in your Pin descriptions.
- Make sure your Pins link back to your site.
How To Optimize YouTubeYouTube is considered the second-biggest search engine on the Web (even ahead of Bing and Yahoo). Make sure your YouTube videos rank well in search results and drive maximum traffic to your site or blog by following these tips. Use Long Video Descriptions Keywords included in your video descriptions help YouTube (and Google) understand what your video is about. Think about including a full audio transcription in addition to a simple introduction (about a paragraph or two long). If you don't have time to transcribe audio yourself, consider using a service like Rev. Include YouTube Cards Have you ever watched a YouTube video and noticed a window with a link pop up? Those are called cards, and they're invaluable for driving traffic from YouTube back to your blog or website. For more information on what these look like and how to implement them, visit YouTube’s official Creator Academy page on cards and end screens.
How To Optimize InstagramInstagram doesn't have a ton of functionality outside of its mobile app. However, we do have one tip that can help increase the visibility of your profile while making your blog posts more visually appealing. Embed Instagram Images In Your Blog Posts If you'd like to share an Instagram post on WordPress, all you need to do is copy the embed link and paste it straight into your blog post wherever you want the image to show up. Find an image on Instagram using a desktop browser. We’ll use the CoSchedule Instagram account for this example. Let's say we want to paste that Halloween costumes image into this blog post. Easy enough. We'll just click that image, which will appear like this: Click the three dots in the top right corner and click embed to grab the embed code: Finally, copy the code that appears and paste it directly into WordPress (using the Text view, rather than Visual). It'll look like this below: Pretty cool, huh? This can help add visual flair to your blog while extending the reach and visibility of your Instagram content.
Now, Go Rock Your Social Media Optimization!A lot of the tips and tactics that we've covered here might seem really small or only mildly consequential on their own. However, these minor details add up fast, and they're all key to creating an appealing social presence. Let's recap, quick!
- You know that social media optimization (SMO) is implementing changes to optimize a site so it is more easily linked to, more highly visible in social media searches on custom search engines (such as Technorati), and more frequently included in relevant posts on blogs, podcasts and vlogs.
- You found out why SMO is important and that the devil is in the details when it comes to SEO and SMO. If you aren't paying close attention, they may come back to bite you later.
- You now know how to make your blog social media friendly by adding social sharing buttons, open graph data, and click-to-tweet boxes.
- You know how to optimize your social media channels for maximum visibility.