Should I Invest In SEO Or Social Media?

Prospective clients often ask me if they should invest in SEO (search engine optimization) or social media. Their company only has so many marketing dollars to spend, and they want to spend them as wisely as possible. They have heard a lot about both SEO and social media marketing, and know they should probably be doing at least one of them, but they do not understand either one enough to make the decision on their own. So they ask me.

SEO or Social Media: Which is the Wisest Investment?

I answer this question by turning it into an analogy.

Should you put two front wheels on your car, or two rear wheels?

Just as a car needs both front wheels and rear wheels, your company needs both SEO and social media. [Tweet This]

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SEO and social are more interdependent than ever. Search engines are using social “signals”, such as “likes”, retweets, and “plus ones” as votes of confidence, similar to the way they look at relevant inbound links.

On the flip side, it is extremely beneficial to have carefully-selected key phrases in your social content, since more and more social media posts are being indexed by search engines. It also helps to have those phrases prevalent in your social posts when users run searches within a social network.

Additionally, by having a presence on each major social network, you can easily dominate the first page of Google for “branded” searches. Branded searches are searches for your company name, or variations thereof. A Google search for a company name often produces profile results from Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google Plus, Pinterest, Quora and SlideShare. If your company has profiles on all of these networks, then you will nearly dominate the first page results for your branded terms. This is especially beneficial when there are other companies with names similar to yours.

Blogging is the Fuel that Drives it All

There’s a second part to my automotive analogy of SEO and social media.

Blogging is the fuel that drives the car.

If SEO gives you two wheels, and social media gives you the other two, then blogging is the fuel that drives the car. Blogging frequently with carefully-selected key phrases will boost both your social media presence and your SEO rankings. Search engines like to see consistently-expanding sites with fresh keyword-rich content. Social media fans love to see genuinely useful articles that help them solve their most pressing issues.

The social signals (likes, shares, retweets, etc.) generated by the social interest help boost the search engine rankings for the articles. And the carefully-chosen key phrases in the freshly-pressed blog articles bring your company more visibility in Google. These two factors play off of each other for an exponential “snowball” type of effect. Or, to stick with the automotive analogy:

Keyword-rich blog articles rev up your marketing’s RPMs.

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Are You Running on Empty?

What kind of shape is your internet marketing vehicle in? Are you running on all cylinders? Or are you running on empty? Leave your comments below.

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