Social media and SEO work hand-in-hand when promoting and maintaining your brand. Social media is an added channel which shows in search results, and social media engagement will influence search ranking. This is why it is crucial to give proper attention to your social media outlets to maintain your brand's relevancy and quality score. This infographic from MediaVision shows you the evolution of social and the amount of people active on these channels.

Check out these 10 tips for creating an engaged social media following:

1. Social sharing. Enable social sharing tabs on your website to allow visitors to share your content on their social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+.

2. Sharing quality content. You don't always have to share solitary content on your site. Try to incorporate interesting and high quality content from others that is related to your target market. This will attract more followers based off of relatable content instead of self-promotional updates alone.

3. Blog comment/email signature. Including your social media platforms on your blog comment or email signature is a way of exposure. Link your most-active social media platform on your blog comment. Some blogs will give you choices from which to link the comment source (like Twitter and Google+). For your email, you can use icons under your name and business that link to your site's social media.

4. CTA's on thank you pages/emails. When a new lead fills out a form on your site or reaches out to you, include links or CTAs (call to actions) on the subsequent thank you page or feedback email. This is an easy way to gain more followers as the new lead will be more apt to follow and explore your social media platforms.

Photo cc: American Express

5. FACEBOOK: You can hide content from non-likers on your business page under the default tab. This will entice non-likers to "like" your page to find out additional information.

6. Using appropriate filters and imagery. Certain apps and websites help assist in creating fun, animated or enhanced images for your site. I found that Canva works really well for templates of all kinds, ranging from animated images to cover pages or headers that can be uploaded to social media channels. Photocandy is an application I love using for mobile. It gives you a selection of graphics to edit your pictures which can be uploaded to your website, Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or other apps.

7. Be active. "25% of consumers who complain about products on Facebook and Twitter expect a response within one hour"- American Express. Respond to those that have complaints or negative feedback in a timely fashion. This lets others know that you care about the improvement of the product and more importantly, customer service.

8. Be personable. You don't have to tweet or post about business all the time. Followers will eventually find it to be dry, robotic and boring, so try to incorporate a good balance of hobbies, business and personal activities. For example, tweet or post about that fun ski trip you took last week or a new book you can't put down in between business posts.

9. Make sure your site is adaptable for mobile devices. 28% of total mobile U.S. internet time is spent browsing social networks and entertainment- Experian.  Is your mobile site easy to navigate? Does your mobile site have a nice display?

10. DON'T make fan/follower growth your main priority. Focus on the relevancy of your content, brand marketing and high quality sharing in posts on your social media platforms, encouraging social sharing and followers will come naturally!


By Cassandra Kicak