Social Media is a great place to find a new business opportunity or scale your current business venture by discovering new customers/clients and building brand awareness. Whether it is an Ecommerce business or a service that you offer, you can reach people faster than ever before with the help of Social networks.
With millions of brands and billions of users, Social Media is a hot scene for any new and established businesses. It has come to the point where staying consistent is not enough. In order to get noticed online, there is a lot of work and effort that goes into planning your Social Media content and analyzing account performance.
Everyone is competing for a bigger slice of the pie, so crafting a custom-tailored Social Media Strategy is always an excellent place to start. One essential piece of this strategy is Social Media Optimization (SMO).
What is Social Media Optimization (SMO)?
Social Media Optimization (SMO) refers to using Social Media networks to expand your business, increase your reach and discover new customers. It is one of the top strategies businesses use to maximize their online effort.
SMO can be utilized by marketers, business owners, bloggers, entrepreneurs, interested in improving their own brands’ credibility and image. It is an excellent way to drive more traffic to your website, generate leads, strengthen your brand or simply get more visibility online.
While the concept of Social Media Optimization includes RSS feeds, blogging platforms, and other similar outlets, for this article, we will focus only on the aspect of Social Media networks – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
Before we get into each Social Media network, it is important to outline the basics that appear for all networks combined:
- Select a username that is FREE on all Social networks that you want to be present on. This will rank your Social Media profiles for the same term when searched on Google (just like SEO). Ideally, you want it to be the name of your company for brands or the username/initials you for creators.
- Select a color scheme for your posts & discover your brand voice – are you going to be professional, quirky, funny, informative, etc.
How to optimize your Facebook page?
It takes a few steps to create the perfect Facebook page. While it is hard to summarize all of them in one post, follow these tips to improve your page in no time.
Choose visuals that represent your brand
The cover and profile photos of your Facebook page are important because they are the very first thing a viewer sees when he/she visits the page.
The cover of your page should represent your brand in a way that includes your brand’s color scheme and aesthetics. If you are able to provide some context, tell a story or share your beliefs solely with the help of great visuals, you are getting the point. Remember to use high-quality content such as stock and vector images as well as optimize your caption with a description and link to a specific page (your website). Needless to say, the visual you choose for your cover photo needs to stand out.
The process of picking the best profile picture for your Facebook page is very straight forward – if you are a business, you must use your logo. This is the easiest way for people to recognize your account in the Facebook search bar, so make sure to use it. If you are a self-branding profile, select a high-quality image of yourself for the same purpose. The perfect
Complete your Facebook page’s details
An essential part of Social Media Optimization is filling out your Social Media profile with as many details as possible. While this does not directly help with ranking, it does give your profile a more complete, professional, and trustworthy look.
One way to start is by adding important details to the “About” section of your Facebook page. You can optimize your page’s description with targeted keywords, add business hours, connect your Instagram profile and give additional contact information about your business – website, phone number, email.
Make sure to add as much information as possible to let all viewers know what your business is all about. Plus, this is a great way to create an excellent first impression.
Customize your URL
If you have just created your Facebook page, you will most likely have an automatically generated URL to the end of your page’s URL. For SEO purposes, you may want to change this as soon as possible. You can easily personalize the URL of your page and change it to match the name of your brand. Ideally, you would want to have the same URL ending on all Social networks. So, if your Facebook URL is facebook.com/thebestbakery you would also want your Instagram to be instagram.com/thebestbakery.
Add Call to Action to your Facebook page
Choose the Call to Action button that aligns with your Social Media strategy and overall goals. Select a CTA that makes the most sense for your needs. For example, if your goal is to join Social Media and reach 1000 app downloads within the first month, it makes sense to add the Use App button instead of any other.
There are a few different types of CTA options:
- Sign Up
- Learn more
- Call now
- Contact us
- Use app
- Send message
- Shop now
- Watch video
- Send email
- Request appointment
Call to actions are worth the try because they can push the viewer to take action. The CTA button appears below the cover of your Facebook page which makes it easy to spot as a regular viewer. Upon clicking on the button, the user will be redirected to an outbound page that you have set.
Pin a post to the top of your page
Pin a post to the top of your Facebook page to showcase a valuable content piece of your Facebook feed. Select a post that lets you spotlight an important post for your business. Promote an upcoming event or the launch of a new product, share your company’s story, or announce a limited-time contest.
Customize your page tabs
If you want to optimize your Facebook page and take it to the next level, you can add custom page tabs and organize them by priority. You can use these tabs to give more information about your business. The default template of your current page is based on the category you have selected when creating your account. However, you can still change the template with one of the options listed below:
- Services – perfect for companies in the B2B market
- Business – great for business management such as posting jobs and special offers
- Venues – designed for business ventures to highlight useful information such as opening hours, location, and future events.
- Nonprofit – an alternative for nonprofit organizations to highlight their cause with the ability for viewers to donate to your cause
- Politicians – designed for politicians to reach their supporters and share their messages with the community
- Restaurants and cafes – a great opportunity for restaurants and cafes to showcase their businesses, hours, location, and menu
- Shopping – perfect for Ecommerce businesses to showcase products and simplify the process of online shopping.
- Video page – a page template that focuses on video content
- Standard – a generic page good for all page types
You can change your page template, add more tabs or organize your current Facebook page Page Settings -> Templates & Tabs. If testimonials are an important part of your business, make sure to enable customers’ reviews.
Use a chatbot or set Saved Replies
Last but not least, make sure to improve your customer support by setting up a chatbot or “Saved Replies” to help with customer inquiries. Saved Replies allow businesses to create answers to commonly asked questions and save them for later use. When a new message pops up, you can choose from Saved Replies messages that will appear on the left sidebar, find the one you are looking for and personalize it before you send it.
Setting up a chatbot is a little bit more complicated but it also gives users more control over the next step of the conversation. Unlike Saved Replies, a chatbot can ‘lead’ a conversation, by not only responding to specific questions but automatically providing new helpful suggestions. It is similar to a dialog but it is in fact an AI program.
Both of them will do the work if you are new to Facebook Marketing. However, if you receive a high volume of messages with the same questions, setting up a chatbot might be the better opportunity to save time and budget.
How to optimize your Instagram account?
Your Instagram page can be optimized as well.
Choose great visuals
Plan your Instagram feed in advance. That way you will create a cohesive feed that just looks right. Include your brand color scheme and you will reach new horizons.
Select a grid-style/theme for your Instagram feed and make sure to stick to it. Here are some Instagram grid styles to get you inspired:
Minimalistic. Having a minimalistic Instagram feed is about showcasing as little as possible in a huge way. Brands and creators can use this feed to create a specific aesthetic that matches their style.
Row-by-Row Composition. This grid style focuses on dividing your Instagram feed into rows of 3 posts and share content in a more captivating manner. It is relatively easy to keep up with a row-by-row composition.
Tile Grid Composition. Another common and rather easy to remember and follow composition is the tile grid Instagram feed. This grid style is a mix of two drastically different colors to a point where it creates a nice contrast or cohesiveness.
Do you want to discover more grid styles?
Make sure to check out my IG Guide – Master the Art of Instagram.
Remember to choose a good profile picture for your Instagram page. Brand recognition is extremely important, so make sure to choose a profile picture that is easily recognizable and represents the real you. Select a close-up picture of yourself if you want to grow your self-brand. If you are a business, you will hear me say it often – make sure to choose your business logo for your profile picture.
Convert to Professional account – Business or Creator
If you haven’t already done this, you need to convert to a Professional Account as soon as possible. This will give you access to unique data and help you track the performance of your posts and account. If you decide to switch to a professional account, you will have two options to choose from – business or creator account. Choose the one that makes the most sense – if you are a company or brand, go with the business option; if you are a creator or Influencer, go with the creator option. There isn’t a major difference between the two so choose the one that makes the most sense.
Optimize your bio and add a URL address
The biography of your Instagram profile can be optimized to convert more website traffic, followers and engagement. You can start with a brief description of your brand and cover the most important aspects of your company. If you are a personal profile, you can describe what your feed is about, add a sentimental quote, or use emojis to give better visuals and add color to your Instagram biography.
Add a custom link to your Instagram profile to let your followers know where they can find you outside of the platform. Share your website, blog, or special offer with the community. You have the option to share only one URL address at a time, so make sure to share the link that matters the most. If you are working on multiple projects and you want to share multiple links, there is a way to do it through Linktree.
Make sure to use Instagram analytics platform to see how users are engaging with your profile bio and custom link.
Add highlights to your Instagram profile
Instagram highlights are curated Instagram stories that you can add to your Instagram profile for your audience to see. They appear below the Instagram bio and custom link, so it is really easy to spot them if they are there. Instagram highlights make your profile look more professional and complete. But that is not the only reason people use it. They provide a lot of helpful information about your business venture and overall profile that people can easily see with just a few swipes.
Brands can use them to share their company’s background and testimonials, answer FAQs, put a spotlight on their latest blog posts, promote events, or anything that matters. Influencers and creators can also use them as an introduction to their profile and life.
Add Call to Action (CTA) button
Similar to Facebook, you can add a Call to Action button to your Instagram page to push your audience to take a specific action. Action buttons are perfect for businesses who want to convert more leads such as to book appointments, reservations, tickets, etc. A CTA button for online orders can be added to Ecommerce businesses as a new opportunity to increase the number of your sales.
Choose the perfect handle for your Instagram
Your Instagram handle is unique. This is your username and cannot be identical to any other. You can change your Instagram handle as much as you want but you will have to wait 14 days if you want to rename it to your old name. It is not a great idea to change your name all the time because it will affect your ranking in the search engines and it might take months before you can get to the first page of Google and even that’s not guaranteed.
That’s why you want to make your Instagram handle the same as the rest of your Social Media channels. You will hear me repeat this often but if you want to get visibility and rank all of your media for the same search term/keyword, this is the way to go. So, if your business name is Cool Company, you would want to have the same ending on Instagram (instagram.com/coolcompany), Facebook (facebook.com/coolcompany), and any other media outlet.
Apart from your Instagram handle, make sure to optimize your name as well. The name of your Instagram account is not unique but it can help with rankings within the Instagram app.
How to optimize your LinkedIn profile?
LinkedIn is the number one Social Media platform for business and networking. With over 200 million monthly active users, the platform presents countless opportunities for any business and entrepreneur. How to optimize your LinkedIn page?
Choose a professional cover and profile photo
Of course, just like any other platform, one of the first things to do to optimize your LinkedIn page is to update your profile and cover content. This step is important because these visuals are the very first thing a viewer notices when they visit your page. So, it is your goal to leave a great first impression.
Select a background image (cover) that represents you in a professional light. Choose a photo that will grab the attention of the viewer and convey the right message. Use your cover to show the viewer what matters to you and helps you stand out.
If your goal is to improve your personal LinkedIn page, choose a professional profile picture that represents a clear closeup of your face. If you do not have a suitable image, make sure to take one with the help of this article.
For your company page, choose the best profile picture there is – your logo.
Write an excellent summary
Your profile summary is like a second introduction to your LinkedIn profile. Use it to tell a story and share more about who you are as a person. Let your visitors learn about your values and beliefs. Remember to optimize your LinkedIn profile with the help of niche keywords that will help you rank higher on the platform.
Customize your LinkedIn URL
When you first create a LinkedIn account, you will be given a random URL in the form of numbers. A neat SEO trick to rank higher on search engines such as Google and Bing is to customize this URL with your own name. This will make your profile more discoverable even outside of LinkedIn. It will also make it easier to share your URL with other people. If you are planning to use multiple Social Media platforms to boost your online presence, remember to use the same username initials to as many platforms as possible.
Optimize your headline
Use the headline of your LinkedIn page to tell a little bit more about your work. Be smart about it and do not settle only solely for the job title. Instead, try to think about potential leads and prospects and how could they discover you. What terms would they use?
Avoid words such as “Expert”, “Guru” and “Winning” or other buzzwords that can push off recruiters or prospects. But include relevant keywords to your niche. Don’t let your place of education or your current job position define you. Cultivate your own identity.
Add a list of relevant skills or spotlight the service your business offers
Optimize your LinkedIn profile by adding the most relevant skills you possess. Do not create a big list of irrelevant skills just for the sake of them being there. Quite the opposite! Stick to only the most relevant skills you want to be associated with. Once you add the list of skills, your LinkedIn connections will have the option to endorse them.
Endorsements can be very helpful in building and shaping your professional profile on the platform. If some of your LinkedIn connections endorse your skills, it will increase the chances of your LinkedIn profile being discovered for opportunities related to this specific skill you’ve listed.
If you are a company page on LinkedIn, make sure to spotlight the services your business has to offer. By filling out the service section of your LinkedIn company page, you will be able to rank in search results on the platform and increase your reach and visibility.
How to optimize your Twitter page?
With over 330 million global monthly active users, Twitter is one of the biggest Social Media networks. It is widely used by businesses, creators, and regular users as a way to communicate with each other. How to optimize your Twitter page?
Optimize your profile and cover picture
Tell your story with the help of great visual content. Choose a header image (cover) for your Twitter account that is current, trending, and interesting for your audience. Find the most appropriate and attention-grabbing header to showcase your brand’s accomplishments and values. Emphasize on a recent milestone that your company has reached or promote an upcoming event or a product launch. When you find the perfect cover, make sure it matches the style of your profile picture – your company logo.
If you are a personal account/creator use the Twitter cover to cross-promote your Social Media channels in a compelling manner. Share an inspirational quote or a visual from your latest trip. Choose the most suitable image that represents your personality and brand.
Complete your Twitter bio
Similar to the rest of Social networks, it is important to use your Twitter biography to convey a message or encourage people to take further actions on your profile. Craft the perfect Twitter bio that will leave the best first impression. Complete your Twitter bio by adding relevant keywords, hashtags, and a brief description of what your brand is all about. Be smart about your description as it acts as a meta description for search engines such as Google and Bing.
Add a custom URL and Location to your Twitter profile
Think about the best page where you want to send your Twitter followers. It might be hard to choose only one URL address, so make sure it is the most appropriate one. Ensure that the URL of your choice is optimized for mobile users too. Use the link to continue the conversation with your followers outside of the network with the proper link. Share a download link to your free ebook or guide, encourage people to join your subscribers’ list, or showcase your top-selling products.
If you are a local business, include the location of your business on your Twitter page. This will help Twitter to show your content to other locally based prospects.
Optimize your Twitter name and handle
Similar to Instagram, Twitter also uses a unique handle for each user. Your Twitter handle, also known as username, is what people use to reply to your tweets and it is also identical to your Twitter accounts’ URL address. So, if your username/handle is @topcreator, your Twitter URL will be twitter.com/topcreator. Make sure your Twitter handle is the same as the rest of your Social Media channels.
Do not forget to add a Twitter name to your page as well. A Twitter name is not unique. It is simply a better way to help people on Twitter to find what they are looking for with ease.
Pin a Tweet at the top of your Twitter page
Pinning a Tweet to the top of your page is a great way to highlight an important event of your brand or career. When someone visits your Twitter page, this Tweet will be the very first thing they see, no matter your latest post or when this Tweet was initially posted.
This feature allows brands to announce contests or upcoming events as well as promote products and new launches. People can use Pin a Tweet to highlight a tutorial video, share sponsored posts, announce new marketing campaigns, or share an explainer video. Think strategically about the description of your tween and make sure to include a link to your pinned Tweet along with a clear call to action.
How to optimize your Pinterest account?
Pinterest is more of a visual engine than a Social Media platform with 400 million monthly active users. The platform is perfect for anyone who seeks inspiration and great visuals. How to optimize your Pinterest account?
Switch to a business account
If you want to take your Pinterest Marketing to the next level, the very first step is to convert your account to a business account. Whether you are a company or an individual, you want to switch to a business account because of the massive benefits it offers.
With Pinterest for Business, you will get analytics on your current pins and boards. This will help you track account progress, evaluate and adjust your Pinterest strategy. But analytics is not the only thing you get. Having a business account will give you access to marketing content, the ability to verify your website and account, hold contests and giveaways for your audience. All of these will help grow your Pinterest account.
Choose great visuals
Choosing the best profile and cover visuals on Pinterest is just as important as any other Social Media network. Select the profile picture that represents your brand the most because this will be the content that will rank in Google Images.
If you are a business account, you would want to build brand recognition and focus on spreading your logo everywhere online. If you are a personal profile or creator, you would want to select a catchy visual for your profile picture. When you have the perfect profile picture for your Pinterest account, make sure to add a compelling cover photo.
Add or optimize your Pinterest biography
Do not forget your biography description. Many brands and creators tend to leave this part of their Pinterest account empty. But adding a bio to your channel can help you reach more people and rank better on search engines by taking advantage of strategic and relevant keywords to skyrocket their account.
Pinterest users can get creative with their bio by adding personality to their 160 characters of Pinterest bio. Slogan, quotes, quirky jargon can encourage more people to engage with your account. Plus, adding a CTA is a great opportunity to encourage people to take action and drive more website traffic from your Pinterest account.
Claim your website
Pinterest allows users to claim their website and upon verification, the website is shown on the user’s profile. This presents an excellent opportunity for everyone on the platform to generate more website traffic directly from their Pinterest profile.
Ecommerce businesses can even take it a step further. If you are selling a physical or digital product and you know your audience is on Pinterest, you can verify your website as a merchant. This will allow you to tag products and make the process of shopping on the platform so much easier. You can use your existing Pins to add products to your images or use a URL link.
Related: If you want to grow your Pinterest, check out Tailwind – it will help you to post at the best time.
Optimize the description of your Pinterest boards
Give a clear idea of what your board is about. Go through each one of your boards and create a short description with carefully placed keywords. Don’t go over the board (wow) with your board description and make sure it doesn’t sound robotic.
Add covers to your boards
Organize your boards and when you are ready, add cover images to each one of them. Adding a photo to your board gives a lot more information about the content of your board. Replace every one of your Pinterest boards with a suitable image and when you are ready rearrange the boards to create a cohesive Pinterest page.
Use Rich Pins
Rich Pins can drastically improve your SEO efforts on the platform. This feature enables users to add more details about your Pin and sync information directly from your website to your Pins. There are three different types of Rich Pins – product, recipe, and article. Here is how Pinterest describes each one of them:
- Product Rich Pins include the most up-to-date pricing, availability and product information right on your Pin.
- Recipe Rich Pins add a title, serving size, cook time, ratings, diet preference and a list of ingredients to recipes that you Pin from your site.
- Article Rich Pins add the headline or title, the description, and the author of the article or blog post from your site.
You can find out here how to apply for Rich Pins.
Social Media Optimization (SMO) is an essential part of any Social Media strategy. And for a very good reason! It does not take months to test and you can continue optimizing your profiles as you go. But creating a professional-looking profile and staying consistent on every Social Media platform will bring you great results.