I was scrolling through my Twitter feed a few days ago, when I came across an interesting question from Neil Patel, which poses the question of Seo and Social Media.
By the way, just in case you’ve never seen Neil’s blog I highly recommend you check it out.
This Twitter thread was alive with comments, it had 96 when I saw it, I’d guess it’s probably well into 200 by now.
This was the question and you can see my response underneath it:
“Would you rather have 1 Million Engaged followers or rank #1 in Google for 3 keywords of your choice?”
It’s an interesting question.
Personally, I’m not a huge fan of social media marketing.
It has it’s place and I do SOME, but my main focus is this blog.
Social Media especially facebook is a bit hit and miss.
I personally have the opinion that social media “likes” “follows” “retweets” and etc..
Are largely a Vanity metric.
You see, someone “liking” a post is fine.
But what I care about is “does someone liking my post, make me money?”
I’ll give you an example…
There is a guy in my facebook friends list who really “gets” social media.
He’ll put a post up on Facebook and he’ll get tons of engagement.
The content he puts up is mainly motivational, feel good kind of stuff.
Each time he puts a post up, he’ll get 100’s of likes and a TON of comments and on the surface, it might look good (that’s the vanity part) but the reality is this…
Whenever he puts up a post that’s a pitch kind of post for somebody to buy something, his engagement goes waaaay down.
It’s tumbleweed by comparison to any other post he puts up.
Neil’s Twitter question immediately reminded me of a blog post I read back in 2014, where a company called “copyblogger” deleted their facebook page of 38,000 organic fans.
They conducted a study on their own fan page, and they were shocked by what they found. I won’t go into it here, but you can read that blog post here. It’s interesting to say the least.
Here’s a quick summary of what they found and why they deleted their page:
When copyblogger starting taking a deeper look at their Facebook page, they discovered that the page had an overwhelming number of junk fans.
These are accounts with little to no personal status update activity that just go around “Liking” Facebook pages.
They also found that a significant number had just liked their page because they saw one of their friends like it.
(When someone likes a page, facebook will suggest it to your friends and tell your friends you’ve liked a page).
Simply put, these so called “Fans” were useless to their brand.
They also created a highly shareable posts and catchy graphics and linked them to their blog.
What they discovered was, although they got “some” likes to their graphics, and while this might look good (again vanity rears it’s head) hardly any of them actually clicked through to their blog.
What this means is, people were half heartedly engaging.
They tried running questions to their audience in which they could ANY question they wanted to the Copyblogger team and they would answer it, to try and generate more social media engagement, out of 30,000 “fans” they received a paltry 3 questions.
This doesn’t mean you should avoid social media, some brands do insanely well with Social Media.
What this really means, is certain brands (like copyblogger) aren’t compatible with all social media platforms, in copybloggers case, Facebook definitely didn’t work for them. This is a great blog post I found that makes the point really well.
To go a step further I found this…
A recent study of 2,810 social media business profiles by Iconosquare.com, painted a pretty bleak picture of the value of Social Media.
This is what Iconosquare.com found specifically for Facebook:
“We discovered that, globally, the average page engagement rate on Facebook is 28.3%, while the average engagement rate per post is 3.22% and the average engagement on reach is 0.09%.”
So let’s break that down..
The Average post engagement rate is: 3.22% (according to that study).
This means that for every 100 fans / followers, you’re going get roughly about 3 people engaged.
Now engagement comes in many forms..
“Engagement” could be a like, share, comment or a mention.
Not all of those 3 people are going to like your post, not all of them are going to comment on your post and even less are going to share your post.
That one metric alone also means, per every 100 fans / followers on Facebook, 97 people will NEVER engage with your post.
To me this seems like a lot of work for very little return!
That’s why I focus more on Seo and not as much focus on social Media.
Don’t get me wrong, Social Media should always be part of your overall marketing plan, but it shouldn’t be your sole focus.
Seo And Social Media Benefits
So to answer Neil’s question: “Would I rather have 1 Million engaged followers or rank top spot for 3 keywords of my choice?”..
Seo for social media is extremely powerful with the right execution.
To me, the answer is simple, I’d rather rank top spot for 3 keywords of my choice.
Remember, I can choose ANY keyword I want.
So here are the 3 Keywords I would choose:
Remember, I’m playing this purely by the seo and social media question that Neil Patel asked, and here it is again:
So in a hypothetical world, the keywords I’ve chosen are as follows:
“How to Start an Online Business”
“How To Make Money Online”
“How To Start a Blog”
These keywords best represent my business and quick math tells me they get a whopping 185,000 searches every single month!
In an ideal world, these are the exact keywords my ideal customer would type into Google which I’d like my blog to show up for.
By the way, the keyword tool I’m using to find this information is called Ubersuggest, you can get the same information from another keyword tool I use called Long Tail Pro, which I review here).
Now I don’t know about you, but I’d personally prefer 185,000 targeted searches and visitors arrive at my blog every single day, than social media engagement where most of your fans and followers don’t really care about what you have to say.
They just simply clicked “like” or “follow” one day and not much more than that.
What seemed like “a good idea at the time” might be completely insignificant to them tomorrow.
How You Can Use SEO To Get More Social Media Likes and Follows
Ranking higher in Google makes it almost guaranteed that your social media followers and engagement increases aswell…
So seo for social media works hand in hand.
But only if you have certain things in place on your website to make it happen.
Luckily if you have a blog built on wordpress (you should do) there are a few really simple ways you can increase your social media engagement level.
Here Is a Simple but effective SEO Social Media Strategy You Can Use
This is the seo social media strategy I deploy in own business:
- Put social media “share” buttons on your website.
- Insert strategically placed social media calls to action within your content.
- Link to your social media pages and properties from your about page.
- Build an email list and ask your readers to engage with you on a social media.
- Use hashtags
When you incorporate an seo social media strategy using each of these 5 methods, this is what happens:
As users find your website or blog via the search engines like Google or Bing using a keyword search, a HIGH percentage of them will flow out to your social media properties aswell.
And if you implement each of these steps correctly, the end result will look something like the picture above.
I talk about how to get results like this in depth in this blog post, and I highly recommend you read it if you want to increase your instagram followers, Facebook likes and Twitter Engagement.
You’ll find this stuff will work for Pinterest engagement aswell.
Seo for social media when done correctly has far bigger leverage than just having idle followers alone.
Remember, social media followers is mainly just a vanity metric.