Why Do Social Shares Matter?

Social media marketing plays an important supporting role in more traditional online marketing campaigns. But if this isn’t a mystical cure-all, how does social sharing help your business? Let’s take a look at 4 benefits of active social participation and promotion:

Manage Your Brand Reputation: How do I rank for my business name? How do I rank for my own name? How do I rank for my name in Google images? These are a few questions that many people/businesses find themselves asking. Creating well-optimized social media profiles is the most effective way to rank for your personal or company name. Did you know even sites like Vimeo, Flickr and Slideshare can help? Check out a complete post (complete with infographic) on Search Engine Land.

Expand Audience Reach: Social networks now allow you to further expand your social reach. Facebook allows for mass promotions using contests and other Like-bait, while it still works great on personal outreach. As a recent post on HubSpot shows, 50% of Facebook fans actually prefer Brand Pages to the actual company website itself! Think if what you’ll be missing without a Page!

Reap Intangible Benefits: Being active on social media sites is all about building up trust and therein lies the grand potential. Sometimes, intangible benefits are great because it can be hard to put a dollar amount on goals such as “enhancing brand experience” and “improved customer response”. These are things that should be continuously worked on and social media can help your business vastly improve over time.

Relationship to Penguin/Panda?: Although strong social signals can’t make your site immune to Google algorithmic updates (such as Panda or Penguin), many believe there is a connection between sites that got hit and their social presence. Generally, it makes sense that sites that got penalized had very low or no social shares. And sites with quality content that didn’t focus on acquiring unnatural links is generally more shareable. You can use Google analytics or social tools like How Many Shares to check out your site versus competitors and see how things match up. Social shares are important metrics because it means that your content is interesting, relevant and most of all, trustworthy. This is natural behavior that is likely to be rewarded which makes it something you should think about, instead of just primarily focusing on links and anchor text.

These are just a few examples of why social media is becoming more important. It’s not a part of online marketing that you can just ignore now but something you should think about to work alongside your content strategy.

Social Media Tips Learned from Groupon

One aspect of a group + one aspect of a coupon = Groupon. So, have you used it yet?

It Pays to be Social
As we all know, social media advertising depends effective communication. Did you know you can log onto Groupon through Facebook and not have to create a new account? It pays to be social and make things easy for customers.
When Groupon first started, a local daily deal would need a certain number of buyers in order for it to be valid. For example, 500 people needed to score a dozen cupcakes at a bakery for 75% off. People would pass this Groupon to their friends and family via social media or email. Nowadays, so many people use Groupon that I rarely see a deal that hasn’t met its buyer requirement. Nonetheless, it’s still fun to pass on great deals.

Who Doesn’t Love a Great Deal?

Whether you’re a serious shopaholic or frugal foodie, Groupon is a great way to find deals throughout your city. It’s a fun way to try restaurants you’re skeptical about and they also make great gifts. Most recently, a national retailer gave Groupon a try. GAP offered $50 worth of apparel for $25 and over 200,000 people jumped on the deal. That’s 10 sales per second! What’s the lesson learned here? Offer good deals and the customers will come.

People Love Good Customer Service

I recently saw a deal for Mr. Cecil’s California Ribs: $30 of BBQ for $15 – doesn’t seem so bad. I checked out their reviews on Yelp and saw some less than flattering reviews. When so many people are going to be doing their research on your business, you’d better be prepared. I saw that a manager at Mr. Cecil’s was personally responding to negative reviews and offering customers a gift certificate so that they would try the restaurant again. Lesson: learn from your mistakes and offer superb customer service.

Have you learned anything else from Groupon? If your business is interested in giving Groupon a go, it’s a great way to bring in new locals.

social media buzz by peta

Just came across PETA (People for the ethical treatment of animals) website last night through facebook. One of my facebook friends had an award PETA had won for a blog posted on her profile. So I checked out the blog and the various PETA web properties, one of which was their YouTube channel. They have over 3,000 subscribers on YouTube and over 200 videos. Some of these videos are commercials that have been banned from TV. They also have a sexy celebrity channel. I’m sure they get a ton of traffic from these sexy videos so of course I had to check some of them out. 😉 I was doing some market research! They didn’t have the same volume of traffic as the blender YouTube channel we blogged about last week but some of their top videos were brining in over 100k views in a 90 day period. You can check this one out with Jenna Jameson below. Sex sells so PETA is using this to their advantage in promoting their message! Brillant job PETA!

Back to business here. I almost fell down the YouTube hole where one video leads to another and all of a sudden you’ve watched 20 short 2 minute videos. 😉 I was very impressed with PETA’s use of social media buzz on their site. They do a good job of highlighting their different social media properties through links to Facebook, Myspace, and YouTube. They also have PETA TV where they promote these videos directly on their site. Another site the promote is peta2.com where you can find tools for helping animals, class projects, online activism and much more. Another site they highlight is the petakids.com website where they have games and contests for kids. All of this is creating social media buzz for their mission.  They seem to have content for all ages and demographics from sexy ads to games for kids.

Take some time to go through a few of the PETA web properties to get some ideas on how to market your business through social media buzz. I’d love to find out how emarketed can start promoting some sexy models on YouTube to drive traffic for our business. But in the end it comes down to conversions and would this traffic really be ideal for emarketed? It would be fun and exciting to do but would be very expensive and not generate the type of traffic that would lead to conversions.

PETA gets an A+ in our book for creating social media buzz!