Search engine optimization is all about making your business’ website easier for a search engine to read and thus ranking you higher in their results. However, there are numerous and diverse actual techniques used to optimize your site. The emerging importance of social media networking is just one strategy you can use to market your business and garner links and attention. Experts divide social media into four categories: blogs, networking sites (like Facebook), bookmarking sites (e.g. Twitter), and forums.

Blogs are an easy way to offer information and updates to interested clients and others in the industry. A business blog can be a great way to present content relative to your business. For example, a restaurant’s business blog could offer recipes, cooking tips and tutorials, or table and food display ideas. If your business sells a product such as cleaning supplies, articles and posts related to cleaning, or the safety of cleaning supplies, or ways to clean difficult items would all be helpful content for a blog. Generally, people only follow blogs if they are consistently posted on, so having a schedule and dependably releasing new information is vital. Having creative, useful subject matter is also important. People won’t read or link to information they consider boring or inapplicable to their situation. Even if your only audience is other individuals in your same line of business, you will profit from a business blog.

Social networking sites like Facebook or MySpace are another strategy many businesses are using for marketing purposes. For example, Herbal Essence shampoo was giving away a limited number of coupons per day for a free product through their Facebook fan page. Thousands of people are accessing their page every day, going to their website, and telling their friends. That is successful social network marketing. Social bookmarking sites such as Digg, Yahoo Buzz, or Twitter allow users to share information about products, news, and sites they like or dislike. When other people link to you on these sites, your search engine ranking can increase dramatically. Forums can be a way to find people specifically interested in your product or industry. While social network marketing can be a positive strategy for your business, it can become negative publicity if you overtly and constantly advertise. Social networks are a community, and like obnoxious people are always disliked in a community. Having useful and relevant content will get you the right kind of attention.

Do you agree or disagree?  Perhaps, I missed something?  Either way, I would just love to hear what your thoughts are on this topic… just let me know your alive!

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