Social media is great for brand recognition, community engagement and public relations. It’s also highly-effective at driving website traffic, which can boost search engine ranking. But, if gaining a page-one ranking is the main goal, a social media strategy can’t do it alone. Search marketing is part of the solution.
A good social media consultant understands the basics of search engine marketing. This means understanding the important role that words play in search and using them. It means knowing how titles and tags work and why link building is important. Even better, the consultant will implement meta tags and descriptions, along with title, header and alt tags. He or she will have the knowledge and talent to weave keywords into content in a way that both bots and people will understand.
- Planning and project management. This includes creative ideas, developing project plans, outlining project timelines and budgets. The consultant will prescribe online tools, manage workflow, get inputs and approvals.
- Training. This includes knowledge and skills transfer to client teams.
- Keyword strategies. This includes researching, identifying and grouping highly-relevant keywords for search engine ranking.
- Storytelling. This means building a narrative story across content formats and platforms. So yes, this means writing, but also producing videos and podcasts, creating slideshows and newsletters. It includes writing social media updates, creating graphics, custom GIFs, video ‘Stories’, infographics and live broadcasts.
- Tagging. This means ensuring all content is optimized for search and is fully tagged. It also includes researching and identifying suitable and trending tags.
- Copywriting. This includes writing social and PPC ads, using keywords and tags to gain greatest click-through rates.
- Posting and scheduling content. This means using native or 3rd party platforms to maximize exposure and boost engagement levels.
- Creating, publishing and managing social media and PPC ads.
- Community management. This means answering questions, engaging in conversations etc.
- Guest posting. Pitching and writing content for someone else’s website to expand reach and improve page authority. The social media consultant will research and identify suitable blogs and websites, craft a story pitch, follow up and negotiate placement.
- Influencer marketing. This means getting people with large and loyal online followings to cover the clients’ stories and share their content. This builds inbound links and boosts search rankings. It provides increased visibility and engagement. The social media consultant will research and identify suitable influencers, craft a story pitch and negotiate deals. Once established, the consultant often serves as the day-to-day contact for influencers.
- Link-building. The bullets above are examples of link-building activities. Others include getting directory listings, listed on resource pages, creating outlinks and in links, traditional networking, using news wires and more.
Tracking & Measurement
- An SEO audit. The consultant will perform an analysis of keywords, competitors, content, links and of website performance. This audit will underpin the strategy development (see above).
- Monitoring is a daily activity for search marketing consultants. They keep an eye on the keyword rankings as things, content, algorithms and technology shifts and changes. When warranted they take remedial action to restore search rankings.
- Analytics. Skilled social media consultants can use Google Analytics and similar tools to gauge both the quantity and quality of organic search website traffic.
- Activity reports. A social media consultant will produce regular activity reports that summarize all actions carried out. A good one will provide an evaluation component that measures or predicts any return on investment for each activity.