The ultimate mission of any search engine is to serve the most relevant information it can. However from a search perspective, the emergence of social media has essentially expanded what’s relevant.
You may have heard many refer to this subject as social media optimization (SMO), to be more specific I like social search optimization because it is more specific. Summing it all up is simple: to maximize the visibility of content for whoever is looking for it.
But first, check out this story
A friend of mine was recently looking for a job. In anticipation of the interview, he updated his LinkedIn profile and cleaned up Facebook.
He then did a Google search of his own name and was hit with a sucker punch! The third search result was displaying a crude comment he made about a video on a Facebook page.
This was unfortunate for my friend however it proves the point that social media can make a big mark for your business.
There are many scopes and definitions of social search, but it is most recognizable as the addition or inclusion of social content in the context of online search.
With search now implementing social content within its results, social interaction design (SxD) enthusiasts continually analyze what works and what doesn’t.
Experts have identified three categories of social search that fit the focus:
1. Collective Social Search
2. Friend-filtered Social Search
Each of the three search types ultimately rely on people (beyond Google PageRank) to deliver the most meaningful results.
There is a second side to social search, which I feel is typically more applicable to marketing, “social objects.” Social objects are things like Facebook entries, YouTube videos, blog posts, comments, Flickr images, and Yelp reviews.
These social objects drive conversations, and may consist of content directly indexed or associated through meta data.
Every company is a media companydue to the fact that the future of marketing starts with publishing. Social objects are the most accessible items of search optimization.
This means applying an assortment of the same search engine optimization (SEO) strategies you’ve used on traditional web pages and apply them to social objects. Think of it in the context of keyword-targeted tags and titles (of your videos, pics, posts, etc.), as well as effective use of keywords in comments and Facebook profile descriptions. You have an abundant opportunity in front of you with Social Search Optimization, make it work for you!