This is a guest post of Richard Buettner, Director of Weever Media Limited.
Leveraging social media on your site is a must since no website / business owner nowadays can afford to not participate on the ever-growing social platforms. To gain most from brand building social conversations the integration between the social world and the website needs to be seamless and effective. Here come some tips based on the latest trends:
Tip 1: Social media sharing – from your site into the social platforms
Sharing of content is a crucial principle of social media – hence you need to enable the sharing of your content into the social world to spread the word. These are in fact social impressions you’d be missing out if not implemented. No matter if you’re providing content or selling products online sharing buttons make perfect sense to easily let visitors to your site share content they find interesting.
We recommend (similar to AdSense) showing them at the bottom of your content / page, basically after the user has finished consuming your content and you want to call the user to an action.
Tip 2: Social Media Accounts Buttons – two way integration between site and social accounts
Using this approach you reflect and synchronise your social activities in your social media accounts on your website. Obviously this makes most sense if you carry out social activities.
There’s not much reason and it can be even counterproductive to connect an abandoned account with no activity or fans. Also if you’re active on Facebook but not on Twitter or Pinterest, don’t bother to connect to inactive accounts.
In regards to the position of the social media buttons on your site there is no right or wrong but is pretty much a question of your owns site’s design. We’d say make sure they are visible enough but not visually overwhelming.
Tip 3: Integrate social in other customer contact points
Other popular and effective ways of communicating to your clients are email marketing and search engines. In terms of email newsletters you can put social sharing as well as s social media buttons on each newsletter. Your email signature can also include social buttons or even you’re latest updates (there are apps for that).
In regards to search the best way towards integration is to have lots of fans and activities, this ensures a strong social signal for Google and results in higher rankings of your content in the search results. If you’re running Adwords campaigns you could utilise Adwords social extensions which allow showing your company’s Google+ account next to your ad.
Tip 4: Stay up-to-date
Social Networks come and go, the latest rising star is Pinterest and some of our clients get a ton of traffic through there; so accordingly add or remove buttons from your site. Also social technology alters or provides more functionality over time. Worth mentioning here is the Facebook social plugins and the social graph which allows to morph simple social media buttons into analysis-powerhouses.
Tip 5: Stay reasonable
Tip 6: Analyse and optimise
Highly recommend are the latest Google social analytics reports which allow you to measure and analyse the sources of your social traffic incl. any potential conversions made on your site. The social plug-in analytics allow you to analyse what type of content received the most likes and which one does not work.
If you consider these tips there’s a good chance to increase the traffic to your site and engage more fans on your social media accounts.