Social Media Marketing for Link Building: Top Tactics and Strategies

25 Sep

The role of social media marketing in SEO isn’t that obvious. Some people feel skeptical about social signals affecting Google’s rankings in any way. Some separate social media marketing and SEO as fields with different goals and methods. Yet these people constitute a minority among SEO experts, as it has recently turned out.

In the largest industry survey on how SEO professionals do link building in 2017, the results showed that most specialists use social media for link building. Namely:

  • 88 percent of SEOs include links in social media profiles.
  • 81 percent share their social media content.
  • 53 percent have experimented with viral campaigns (social media contests, etc).

That is how we know link building with social media is a widely used tactic and an effective one, but overseen by many specialists of the field. If you’re one of them, keep reading. This article will give you an overview of tested methods that are worth trying out.

Include Links in Your Social Profiles

Social media is often thought as pointless for SEO for one simple reason: links from social media platforms are unfollowed. Even Google Plus, YouTube, Pinterest, Tumblr, LinkedIn – platforms that either used to be exceptions to this rule, or thought by some to be – have at one or other points of their existence gone down the same road.

Today, Reddit is the only exception. However, marketing on Reddit is barely possible. Your product has to be extremely relevant to some subcommunity for your promotion and link building to work.

Yet you can’t afford to just ignore social media link building because it’s nofollow. What about social signals? What about traffic that comes from links in the news feeds? Matthew Woodward in his tutorial points out the importance of social backlinks for SEO and provides us with some tips on how to go about it.

For example, on Facebook, make sure to add:

  • Your website link in the website field under Contact and Basic Info on your About tab;
  • Your website URL anytime you post something on your wall, including images and videos;
  • A link to your website to your group’s pinned post.

Similarly to what you’ve done on Facebook, go through your other social media pages and include links to cover photos, bios, images, descriptions, and so on. Even if you won’t keep up working with these social media pages, there’s no harm in having a rich description with links – only potential traffic!

Get People to See and Read Your Content

One of the main struggles of SEO and content marketing is getting people to see content. It’s no surprise that given the plethora of content online, it’s hard to find the audience that your articles will be relevant to. So here are some essential tactics for content promotion.

1. Make Your Text Readable

It should go without saying, but many people still write badly. Your content should be engaging, mistake-free, and concise if you want it to be seen. Even if it exists for SEO purposes only.

2. Research Competitors

By looking at your competitors’ link profiles you’ll find loads of opportunities for content promotion. Many heads are better than one! Remember to look at any niche-related industries, not just your direct competitors.

3. Aim for Evergreen Content

Easier said than done, but evergreen content should be your ultimate goal. Also, focus on content that can be rediscovered regularly. For example, an article about Halloween has a good chance of attracting new traffic every October.

4. Consider Translating Your Existing Content

If your audience is international, you’ll get more exposure and so much more links if you simply translate the content you already have.

5. Submit to Niche News Sites and Content Communities

Not every industry has a niche news site or content community, but most do. For example, in digital marketing, there’s GrowthHackers.com, Inbound.org, and BizSugar.com. Triberr.com features blog posts about almost anything. Look for similar websites in your industry, and submit your content for more exposure.

6. Submit to Communities on Social Networks

Communities on social networks are no less important. Depending on the niche, they can be active and therefore valuable to you. There are Facebook Groups, LinkedIn Groups, and Google+ Communities, but you can also attempt marketing in the relevant Reddit or Tumblr communities.

Don’t forget about niche or local social platforms as well! There are some of them dedicated specifically to books or music, some are popular in specific countries only.

On all of these communities, you’ll have to engage with the readers by commenting and answering their questions. This is a good thing as readers may end up borrowing your content and linking back to you.

Create Viral Content

Going viral is the quickest and hardest way to earn links. When social media campaigns or even social media crisis cases go viral, the links appear on popular resources and news websites with no further effort from you.

While getting into a social media crisis to end up on The Guardian is risky, creating viral content is the dream many marketers have. But not many even attempt to do that.

While some videos go viral purely by chance or due to their outstanding content, many are created by marketers that know the key to viral marketing. Let’s try to reverse-engineer the process by looking at companies whose campaign go viral quite regularly.

1. Aim Your Social Media Marketing at Teens & Young Adults

Let’s look at the brand stars of social media: the American fast food chain Taco Bell and the British mobile network O2. While loads of grown-ups eat fast-food and all of them use mobile network (and are more likely to actually use O2 since it’s a rather expensive one), social media marketing of both brands seems to be aimed at teens and young adults. It’s all about jokes, banter, emojis, and sometimes swear words. To be natural at it, brands hire millennials – people who grew up with social media and all its viral culture around them.

Why do brands aim at this part of their potential buyers when creating their social media strategy?

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