Who should Handle your Company’s Social Media Presence?

It does not matter what you think about it personally – social media presence has become a must for companies, no matter what industry they are in, how large they are or who their customers are. With a bit of savvy social media marketing, a company can attract new customers, help retain them, provide quick customer support and even attract top talent using various social media platforms.

In order to achieve all of this, someone has to be tasked with taking care of your corporate social media accounts and for a certain percentage of companies, this is easier said than done.

So, who should handle your company’s social media accounts?

Hiring Someone

For certain type of companies, hiring a person to handle their social media accounts is perfectly viable. Mid-sized companies can afford such a position and larger corporations can have entire teams dedicated to doing nothing but boosting their social media presence.

The main problem with this approach is that it is simply not affordable for smaller companies that are struggling paying their employees as is. Taking on another person just for social media efforts is probably the last thing they would do with extra money.

Some companies decide to go to an outside agency or a freelance social media marketer. Such agencies and freelancers usually offer certain packages and services that come as part of these packages.

While this can work perfectly well, it can still be pricy and there is always the danger that you might not end up one of their “priority clients” and thus end up with subpar service and results.

Taking on an Intern

One of the more common practices today is for companies to take on an intern who would handle their social media accounts for them.
On paper, this really does sound like a win-win situation. The intern gets the chance to put his or her foot in the door and the company does not spend money or someone else’s time (we’ll get to this later).

Unfortunately, the thing that sounds so good on paper turns out to be less-than-spectacular in the real world, at least in the majority of cases. Often times, the amazing social media skills that this intern is supposed to have cannot translate to corporate accounts in any way imaginable. God forbid you ask them to give you some numbers or tell you how they are doing in terms of KPIs you set or ROI that you expected.

It is also not unheard of to take on an intern and end up with someone who is absolutely disinterested in what they are supposed to be doing. They come up with innumerable excuses for not doing their job and they end up as glorified coffee-fetchers for the rest of the company.

Assigning it to an Existing Employee

This is an especially common solution in companies where no one really knows what they are trying to do with their social media presence. They see everyone doing it, they have a few ideas and they decide to throw something at it, so to say.

The obvious solution is to find the most social media-savvy person in the company and assign them with running a few social media accounts on various channels. Perhaps someone even volunteers, thinking that it is the same as having their own personal Twitter profile.

This is a solution that very rarely works out fine because this person is often not exactly versed in the intricacies of social media marketing. They try their best and they may come up with a few ideas, but once again, no one is tracking results, no one is measuring ROI and it all becomes an afterthought after a month or two.

The worst thing, perhaps, is that this employee starts neglecting their other tasks, since doing social media seems like an easier assignment. They think they’ll come to their actual work later, but they end up wasting time on social media efforts that do nothing.

A Company-Wide Effort

If pulled off the right way, the best approach to social media for companies that cannot afford to hire experts to do this long-term for them is to come up with a company-wide strategy that will be as comprehensive as possible.

For example, the owner or someone who is interested in these kinds of things can spend some time reading up on social media marketing and talking to people who actually do it for a living. Maybe the company can even hire a consultant for a few days, just to clear up the basics. At this stage, it is absolutely crucial that it is decided what the goals are and what the KPIs will be that have to be tracked closely.

The next step is to get the employees together and ask them if there are ways in which they would like to contribute. It is more likely than not that a few hands will go up and from there on it is just a matter of organizing everything so that everyone knows their assignments and schedules. This can be done using Basecamp or a similar Basecamp alternative, for example.

It is important to encourage input from the entire company but still have someone who will be in charge and who will monitor the results that are hopefully leading to a successful social media presence for the company.

EMDs as an Effective SEO Tactic

In 2012, Google released the EMD algorithm update. The EMD Update stands for “Exact Match Domain” and is essentially a web filter Google launched to prevent poor quality sites from ranking, well merely, because they use words that match search terms in their domains. So if you were trying to rank for the keyword, sell my car, you would name your domain and business sellmycar.dot (relevant TLD )

History

When SEO’s and marketers first discovered that they were able to rank on the top of search results when using highly searched keywords as domain or brand names, it caused an epidemic. This, of course, led to an uproar amongst established brands, who had invested millions into establishing their online presence over the years. Traditional industry leaders were now outranked by overnight competitors, affiliates and microsites. As a result, a great deal of organic traffic and leads were lost, and affiliates made a killing selling these leads back to advertisers.

Some brands quickly adapted, and setup legitimate business and websites, using the same tactics. Since most of them had bigger budgets, they were able to hire SEO agencies and experts to optimise their websites back to the top of search results.

How It Works

Step One:

Find the most valuable keywords within the relevant industry.

Step Two:

Find out which of these high traffic keywords are registered as domains. For the sake of this exercise, let’s assume that this domain is still available.

Step Three:

Implement a keyword strategy revolving the keyword “buy a car” – you will need to use the keyword as much as possible. This includes using it in the copy, H1’s, Metadata and internal linking structure.

You will also need to build some links to your domain, using that exact match anchor text. One of the advantages of using a keyword as your business name or domain name, is you can argue that you are naturally using your brand name when Google threatens to penalise your website, for spamming web results. Whether or not they will believe you is another story.

What Does Google Say About EMD’s in 2017?

As former Google Head of Spam stated below, this was only a small scale update. Their focus was predominantly set on “low-quality” and reducing their visibility in search results.

When a fresh EMD Update happens, sites that have improved their content may regain good rankings. New sites with poor content or those previously missed by EMD, may get caught.

So What’s The Verdict ?

It appears as if Google are not entirely focused on eradicating search results associated with exact match domains. They are merely trying to reduce low-quality content, which spammers use as a tactic to secure traffic to their websites.

Using an EMD is like using performance enhancing drugs – you might get there faster but you still need to put in the hard work. And if you are involved in a recognized sport, you will be held accountable if one of the drugs you are taking is on the banned list. Google does achieve its due diligence with EMDs from time to time, and I have personally seen thousands of businesses disappear from search results over the years. The true question here is, how much of a risk is it to you?

SEO Optimization Company

George Ian Wyngaardt

SEO Manager at CarZar.co.za

How to Craft the Perfect Blog Post for SEO

SEO jargon can be overwhelming. All you need to do is reach your audience, right? You’ve built a beautiful website and you’re blogging regularly, so don’t let all that content go to waste! A few simple points of SEO knowledge can tighten up your content so search engines, and your target market can find you and understand what you’re all about. Follow these five tips to make your blog better for SEO.

1. Think About Your Keywords

In point of fact, it’s important not to get too hung up on keywords. Research reveals that emphasis is shifting to searchers’ intent, not so much the keywords themselves. And it’s important to remember that to a living, breathing audience, keyword-stuffed content is obvious and unreadable. Still, the discreet use of keywords remains an important part of SEO, and it’s one of the topics that bloggers ask about first.

Keywords operate best in the first and last paragraphs, and in the headline. To avoid redundancy, look into Latent Semantics Indexing (LSI). It’s easy to find synonyms that search engines will understand. For example, instead of using the term “horse trailers” over and over, you could note that you specialize in “equestrian vehicles.” Google will get it, and you will broaden your keyword cache, making your filly wagons easier to find.

2. Organic Backlinks Are the Best – White Hat SEO

Everyone’s abuzz about backlinks, the links on other websites that direct traffic back to you. There are many ways to go about getting these links (not all of them ethical). The best and most foolproof way is to let them happen organically. Google scrutinizes your “link portfolio,” and a collection of unseemly or ill-gotten links can incur you a penalty. This will do the opposite of what you want your SEO efforts to do.

The best thing about organic backlinks is also their biggest problem: they’re effortless. They arise naturally from other bloggers, journalists, and companies who link to your site because they want to share your content. So how do you take a more proactive approach? Here are some do’s and don’ts of garnering backlinks:

DON’T

  • Pay for links
  • Hire a black hat SEO agency or use black hat tactics
  • Leave comments on other blog posts with your link

DO

  • Reach out to other blogs you genuinely connect to and offer to write a guest post
  • Have your company hire a white hat SEO agency
  • Promote your blog by building relationships with relevant people in a genuine way (more on this later)

As with many things, the slow hard road is the best one.

3. Localize Your Content

Remember that you have readers all over the world. And if you don’t yet, it’s an important goal. But a global reach doesn’t get very far if your readers in Patagonia don’t understand your content. There are some valuable localization companies available to help solve this problem. In addition to simply translating your blog, localizing finesses your content into something that looks and sounds natural to the location where your content is appearing. The last thing you want is an awkward Google translation sending the wrong message to thousands of readers overseas!

As a bonus, localizing duplicates your content for every region that you serve, making you more visible to search engines.

4. Collaborate With Other Bloggers and Micro Influencers

This is an expansion on building backlinks, but the goal here is not to gain a link. The goal is to expand your sphere of influence and build meaningful relationships with people in your niche. Write guest posts for other blogger’s sites, comment, follow, and meet for coffee if you’re in the same city! Things will come off some of these relationships. For others, it won’t. Don’t force it. See what clicks.

For more efficient results, zero in on social media micro influencers who post content relevant to your niche. Initiate relationships with them. Consider the difference between reaching out to individual horse lovers, versus reaching out to a well-known rider. A celebrity rider might have thousands of horse loving followers on social media. If they decide to shout you out on Instagram, you’ve reached thousands of horse lovers just by building one relationship.

5. Be Authentic

Content is king. There’s no way to fake authenticity, and authenticity is the hallmark of good content. Keep yours to a high standard that’s easy to read, and easy for search engines to understand. Write clear, structured posts with relevant headings and subheadings. Don’t think so much about SEO that you lose your human audience. Remember, search engines work for people, too–the same people you are trying to reach. Authentic content that means something to people, and not just Google, is more important than any SEO tactics. Without it, the tactics become moot.

The Takeaway

A few simple SEO tactics can go a long way for your blog and your company. But remember that these tactics should work in service of authentic, meaningful content, and never at the expense of it. When you’ve mastered these steps, there are ever-deeper levels of SEO that you can explore. It’s a fascinating field that we are all helping to create and develop in real time, with every passing day and every passing search. But for now, try out these techniques on your blog and watch your traffic rise!

Author Bio

Brian Oaster writes content for translation services company Day Translations from Central America. He has worked all over the world as an arts educator, English teacher, basket exporter, rare book dealer, fortune teller, and as the first mate of a private sailing yacht. Educated in the visual arts and an avid reader of news and literature, his focus is on international arts and culture, world religions and global politics.