New Rules for Social Media Optimization

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[ Social Media]

There is an exceptionally interesting meme developing around the idea of social media optimization.

It started with Rhoit Bhargava of Ogilvy Public Relations and his 5 Rules of Social Media Optimization (SMO) and this insight:

“The concept behind SMO is simple: implement changes to optimize a site so that it is more easily linked to, more highly visible in social media searches on custom search engines (such as Technorati), and more frequently included in relevant posts on blogs, podcasts and vlogs.”

With contributions by Jeremiah Owyang, “Rules of Social Media Optimization” and Cameron Olthuis, “Introduction to Social Media Optimization” who offers this take on SMO:

“SMO tactics can drive huge amounts of people to a website and can also determine whether a startup, website or idea will make it or not. It involves driving traffic to a website through new channels because search engines aren’t the only sites that drive big traffic anymore. While it’s not taking over SEO yet, it has the potential to someday soon.”

The ever insightful Loren Baker also gets in on the action and offers up, “Social Media Optimization : 13 Rules of SMO” and his additions: “Don’t forget your roots, be humble and don’t be afraid to try new things, stay fresh“.

What I would like to see added is:

14. Develop a SMO strategy – define your objectives and set goals. Be fully aware of what your desired outcome is as a result of performing these tactics. Reputation, sales, influence, credibility, charity, traffic/page views, etc.

15. Choose your SMO tactics wisely. Be cognizant of what actions will influence the desired outcome with the most impact.

According to Hans Peter Brondmo of Plum during the SES San Jose session “Marketing with Social Media“, 1% of those involved with social media are creating content, 10% will enrich that content and 90% will consume it. That’s a lot of influence wielded by content creators and those that reblog and mashup. Think about what you can do to enable content creation as well as the repurposing of that content for what might possibly be the most productive outcome.

16. Make SMO part of your process and best practices. As with good SEO, SMO tactics should become part of your organization’s best practices. Find ways to incorporate SMO tactics at the “template” level of document creation and as part of information distribution. Minor things like encouraging social bookmarks and rewarding incoming links as a standard practice across the organization can go a long way.

Regardless of the media, there is almost always going to me an “organic” and a “advertising” component. Think SEO and PPC. Consider this session from the recent ad:tech conference in Chicago called “Advertising with Social Media“. It presented some interesting opportunities and challenges for advertisers regarding MySpace, YouTube and other social media. Advertisers recognize the reach of social media, but aren’t quite sure how to take advantage of it.

For reference, here is an aggregated list so far. Maybe we need a wiki for this?

1. Increase your linkability

2. Make tagging and bookmarking easy

3. Reward inbound links

4. Help your content travel

5. Encourage the mashup

6. Be a User Resource, even if it doesn’t help you

7. Reward helpful and valuable users

8. Participate

9. Know how to target your audience

10. Create content

11. Be real

12. Don’t forget your roots, be humble

13. Don’t be afraid to try new things, stay fresh

14. Develop a SMO strategy

15. Choose your SMO tactics wisely

16. Make SMO part of your process and best practices

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Lee Odden is President and Founder of
TopRank Online Marketing, specializing in organic SEO, blog
marketing and online public relations. He’s been cited as a search
marketing expert by publications including U.S. News & World Report and
The Economist and has implemented successful search marketing programs
with top BtoB companies of all sizes. Odden shares his marketing
expertise at Online Marketing Blog offering
daily news, interviews and best practices.

New Rules for Social Media Optimization
About Lee Odden
Lee Odden is CEO of TopRank Online Marketing, a digital marketing and public relations firm in Minnesota that specializes in search, social and online PR consulting and training for companies worldwide. Odden has been cited for his internet marketing expertise over the past 10 years by the Economist, Forbes and U.S. News and contributed a chapter to the book, "Online Marketing Heroes" published by Wiley. For the past 5 years he has also been the editor of TopRank's Online Marketing Blog, a Technorati 100 favorite blog and one of the top marketing blogs according to Advertising Age. WebProNews Writer
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    thanks for some really helpful links there Lee

  • http://www.dr-sandy.net Blog tutorial :learn to blog

    I would like to add one more point to this.  Use a tell a friend script and let your fellow bloggers know about your exciting posts.This really helps to travel your posts virally and it does help in getting more bookmarks.

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    Social media optimization is all about building relationships with people online.If you feel comfortable with making online relationships then you can optimze your site well.

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      The purpose of maing relationship is to win trust specially if you are selling something online.Winning trust by giving useful and honest advice is the most fruitful step.Help others and expect nothing in return.

  • http://www.universallifechurchstore.org Universal Life Church

    You know, Lee, this site could use some of your suggestions.  I was going to digg this article, but there’s no digg button. :-)

  • Jeffrey Pipes Guice

    I’m interested in reaching social network websites who are interested in trading equity for a $10,000,000 media campaign.

  • http://songwritingtips.org/ How to Write a Song

    Thank you Lee Odden. I have learned lot about Now Social Media Optimization (SMO) by reading this article.

  • http://www.proxy-uno.info/ Proxy Comm

    I love the following section of this post:

    ….1% of those involved with social media are creating content, 10% will enrich that content and 90% will consume it…..

    It’s so true! Nice work :)

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