Marketing with social media has never been as important as it is now, at one time Google was the only player in town and is still the search engine the majority of folks go to when looking to buy, however Google is by no means the best place to focus your marketing efforts.
In the past social media has been viewed as a personal medium for chatting and meeting freinds online, however over the last couple of years there has been a growing number of socially aware marketers building social real estate in order to market to their followers.
Google updated the search algorithm earlier this year and took out many of the websites and link farms where webmasters were getting backlinks, subsequently they devalued a lot of links leading to a huge drop in income for many companies who had paid for links to their pages. At the same time Google put a lot more weight behind social links such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and linkedIn allowing anyone who was savvy in art of social media marketing to gain more authority to their blog or website.
In my opinion unless you have the required knowledge, direct marketing to social media groups is not something the average webmaster could do without looking spammy and would more than likely lose more friends than they would gain, that does not mean you shouldn’t attempt it, I am saying you should approach with caution.
I read recently read an article over at SEOMoz that Google judges your content on more than 200 signals, all of which affect ranking. Four of them are link-related: quantity, diversity, quality, and relevance. Quantity is lowered by quality, meaning relevant links are extremely important to your rankings So how do you use social media marketing when you are not an expert?
Using Social Media To Gain Authority
As we know Google reacts favorably to facebook likes and retweets for your website but you can also harness many other social platforms such as Pinterest, Foursquare, Friendfeed, YouTube, web2 sites and a myriad of other sites with high page rank authority.
Write your article or blog post and publish it in the normal way then start sharing it, share it to as many places you can. There are various tools you can use to do share your posts on, one of my favorite free social bookmarking services is Onlywire, simply set up the easy signup details and they give you the tools to automatically bookmark to each social media site, with analytics and other associated tools Onlywire is hard to beat..
Must Have Social Media Accounts
Facebook: To be marketing socially you really do need to be using Facebook, the sheer amount of people viewing Facebook every day makes it impossible to ignore it, the second thing you should do is build a fan page for your product, my advice here would be to get someone at fiverr to do it for you it saves a ton of time and it’s cheap.
Twitter: As with Facebook there are so many people hanging out here it is a great way to get your message across, it is also very easy to do, twitter is included in the onlywire package so it is possible to automate your blog post you want to tweet then you can send your social tweets when you want.
Google+: Some folks have been quick to dislike Google+ however you have to realize that Google+ is slowly but surely being integrated into Google and plays a large part in how your page ranks, in fact it has been solely responsible for me getting some great rankings in the search results, it is also very easy to use and to be honest I find it more fun than both Twitter and Facebook.
Linkeden: This is more aimed at professionals, however it can bring some great results.
Finding Your Target Market
Finding your target market is all down to research, the best way to find followers is to follow the main authorities in your niche, every time you log in to view your stats take the time to see who is talking and what the buzz is about. It takes a short while before you start to see where you need to position yourself but it will become clearer as you enter the conversation.
One tool I use daily to view what is happening around me is Hootsuite, It allows me to have all my accounts in one place, meaning I can have a few different Twitter accounts my Facebook account, Indentica, LinkdIn and now I can also view my Google+ account, it is such a time saver.