Tweets are showing up in Google again. This is kind of a big deal. Why?
In the past, social search was about helping a searcher find the right person. As my friend Mitch Joel says, it’s not who you know, but who knows you. Social search helped to connect you with the “who”.
Traditional search was about helping a searcher find the right information. Traditional search identified the content that was most relevant to the inquiry; it helped connect you with the “what”.
By blending regular and social search, people can now find the who and the what simultaneously. By conflating social content and search, who and what become much more aligned, much more synonymous. You will be found as a person for what you share in the largest search engine in the world.
What should you change in your content marketing strategy in this new Twitter/Google landscape?
If you’re at all concerned about showing up in Google, obviously Twitter is now part of your overall content distribution strategy. You should be using Twitter if you’re not already. If you need a general plan for how to set up a Twitter strategy, watch this 10 minute webinar I did for SHIFT Communications.
Let’s take a look at what a Twitter SEO strategy might look like.
What You Should Share
What you share is important! Think about the language you use in your Tweets – is it language that helps with search? If you haven’t pulled a list of your top search keywords and phrases recently, do so. If you’re not sure where to get that, start with Webmaster Tools.
What do you want to be found for? What do you want to be associated with on Twitter that would lead to someone clicking a Google search result and finding you? Tweet with those words, phrases, and ideas in relation to your own content.
Who You Should Share
If you’re sharing other colleagues’ content, what language are you using in your Tweets that will help searchers find their content? Your Tweets might show up in search more than theirs, so give them a share if you can.
If you’re sharing competitors’ content, keep an eye on your Twitter analytics! You might think about wording tweets from competitors slightly differently to avoid competing with your own content.
Who Should Share You
If you’re a company whose employees share pre-approved content on Twitter, think carefully about the one-Tweet-fits-all strategy. Consider adding multiple variations of Tweets for employees to share that cover more broad search terms and phrases.
If you’re doing any kind of influencer outreach or collective sharing (like inside a velvet rope community), consider the language you want people to use. Instead of writing up a pre-selected Tweet, give influencers a wide range of choices that leverage your search terms.
What You Should Measure
If you’ve not already set up Google Analytics to differentiate between earned social media traffic and owned social media traffic, get that set up immediately. You can find it in Admin > Property > Social Settings or in this blog post.
From there, carefully monitor your Twitter traffic in Google Analytics. Look for significant changes in traffic from Twitter. If you find an anomaly, an unusual spike, use Twitter Analytics to determine if the clicks are coming from your Tweets or someone else’s.
We don’t know how long this partnership between Google and Twitter will last, but while it does, take advantage of it. Think about your Twitter SEO strategy: what you should share, who you should share, who should share you, and how you’ll measure it. In doing so, you’ll have a better idea of what you should be Tweeting for maximum search value.