Social media optimization (SMO) was originally designed to drive traffic from social media sites such as bookmarking sites and social networks. However, SMO is now significantly more important and not simply because social networking has grown but because SMO also improves SEO performance. Good SMO will drive traffic from both direct social site referrals and from search engines.
Abbreviated as SMO, social media optimization is the process of increasing the awareness of a product, brand or event by using a number of social media outlets and communities to generate viral publicity.
Social media optimization includes using RSS feeds, social news and bookmarking sites, as well as social media sites and video and blogging sites. SMO is similar to SEO (search engine optimization) in that the goal is to drive traffic to your Web site.
While I believe in the power of SEO
For years now, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for websites has been honed into a fine art with entire companies devoting considerable effort to defining best practices and touting the value of SEO for raising a site’s performance on organic searchle=”SEO Manchester” listings.
While I believe in the power of SEO, there is a new offering we have started providing to clients which we call Social Media Optimization (SMO).
The concept behind SMO is simple: implement changes to optimize a site so that 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.
Here are 3 rules we use to help guide our thinking with conducting an SMO for a client’s website:
Increase your linkability – This is the first and most important priority for websites. Many sites are “static” – meaning they are rarely updated and used simply for a storefront. To optimize a site for social media, we need to increase the linkability of the content. Adding a blog is a great step, however there are many other ways such as creating white papers and thought pieces, or even simply aggregating content.
Make tagging and bookmarking easy – Adding content features like quick buttons to “add to del.icio.us” are one way to make the process of tagging pages easier, but we go beyond this, making sure pages include a list of relevant tags, suggested notes for a link (which come up automatically when you go to tag a site), and making sure to tag our pages first on popular social bookmarking sites (including more than just the homepage).
Reward inbound links – Often used as a barometer for success of a blog (as well as a website), inbound links are paramount to rising in search results and overall rankings. To encourage more of them, we need to make it easy and provide clear rewards. From using Permalinks to recreating Similarly, listing recent linking blogs on your site provides the reward of visibility for those who link to you