Social Media Optimization
When we talk about Web 2.0, we talk about establishing and maintaining
relationships. As a web professional your job is not only to attract
visitors but to encourage them to become frequent ones. With the
importance of social media on the web, Mr. Rohit Bhargava came up with
the term Social Media Optimization (SMO). While Search Engine
Optimization is about making your site visible to search engines, SMO's
concept is to optimize your site in order to make it visible on social
media searches, easy to be linked to, visible on internet search engine
for blogs like Technorati and get included on various blogs, vlogs and
podcasts. SMO method includes adding RSS feeds, bookmarking and sharing
buttons and blogging. You can enhance your website with third party
community functionalities like Flickr photos and galleries or YouTube
Mr. Bhargava has set 5 rules of SMO:-
Increase your linkability: Search engine optimization talks about getting
relevant backlinks. Social media optimization however emphasizes on the
need of making your website linkable. In most cases websites are hardly
updated and display limited content. To enhance the linkable feature on
such websites, adding blog could be a better idea.
Make tagging and bookmarking easy: As I mentioned earlier, you need to
add quick buttons to make bookmarking and tagging easier. You can include
list of relevant tags and suggested notes for a link. You need to tag
your pages on popular social bookmarking sites as well.
Reward inbound links: The importance of inbound links could not be
denied. A better way of increasing links is by encouraging the sites that
link to you. You can do this by listing recent linking blogs on your site
who link to you. You'll be rewarding them and encourage others to do the
Help your content travel: When you have portable content like video
files, audio files, PDFs, you need to let them travel. You can do this by
submitting them to relevant sites. YouTube is one of the best ways to
promote your videos online. When you submit your content on other sites
you'll be promoting your site and get links back to your site.
Encourage the mashup: In the process of establishing and maintaining
relationships on web, you need to be more open and let others use your
content. RSS feed is the best example for this, by syndicating your
content others will be able to create mashups and promote your content.
Along with these 5 rules it is important to keep few more things in mind:
Original Content: Coming up with new ideas and content that are
interesting works well on social media. People are not interested in
things they have already read somewhere. So come up with innovative stuff
and entertain the group you are targeting to.
Engage: You need to make your site interesting to engage the users and
encourage them to explore your site. For this your site needs to have
attractive and well planned outlook, useful information that are up-to-
date and easy to comprehend and avoid engagement barriers like boring
flash intros and slow servers.
Participation: Social media is about two way communication. You need to
participate in various conversations to let the buzz out. You need to
listen to other people, drop your opinion and let them give their opinion
as well. Participation helps you get your message spread faster.
Social media optimization is all about building relationships. You need
to build trust, make the readers feel at ease and provide interesting
content to make them return over and over again. You need to be creative
and enjoy you social life on the World Wide Web.