Are Social Media Marketing and SEO Merging Marketing efforts?
Social Media and Search Engine Optimisation, better known as SEO, are now widely seen as business sector in their own right within the greater marketing industry. Both drive traffic to websites, helping businesses to develop their brand, sell products and services and achieve their business goals here in Bristol and throughout the world.
Whilst SEO began as a business practice to achieve the highest possible placing for websites on search engines, social media began as a social communication tool allowing people to develop their friendships online through messaging and sharing photos. As its popularity grew rapidly, linking the world in a way no other technology had done, businesses quickly looked to use the platform to attract customers.
As the amount of time people spend online grows in proportion to watching television or reading magazines and newspapers, so advertisers divert their attention away from the traditional forms of business communication and adverting to the new world of online marketing. Today, it is more important than ever for sales companies to find out details about what people are searching for online and to place the right advertising before them.
If you want to see how personalised some advertising is, here’s an experiment you can try. Go to Amazon.com and search for a couple of products that you might be looking to buy. Then go to Facebook and see what adverts appear on your home page. For me, it was a new monitor to link up to my MacBook Pro and heated shoe insoles that I wanted to buy for my grandfather. After reading through the product specs, I switched back to Facebook and realised the sponsored ads on my Facebook homepage were the same products I had just been reading about.
This is a great example of how companies use people’s online search and online activity to capture information about the user and then use that online information to create individual online marketing plans. A company like Amazon can cater for millions of people, capture information and then advertise the products you’re already interested in through your own social media accounts.
Search engines such as Google and Bing also flash up adverts to the right of their search listings. They are also able to use individuals’ data to provide adverts that are most likely to appeal to the user. As companies such as Facebook and Google continue to monetarise and improve their ability to make profit from developing user profiles and matching it to relevant adverts, merging data gained from social media and online searches will provide more targeted advertising and local and personalised search results.
Facebook and Twitter are also providing more personalised or ‘smart search’ options on their social media platforms based on the user’s page views and history and with both Facebook and Google rolling out shopping sites, we can expect social media and search engines to move onto increasingly similar ground in their online marketing endeavours as 2015 evolves.