8 tips to make social search a key element of your social media strategy

Spreading knowledge and showcasing your business isn't easy in a world where information is readily available. By making your content more easily discoverable on social media, you increase your chances. How do you incorporate social search into your social media marketing strategy in 2024? We share 8 practical tips.

The growing importance of social search

In recent years, there has been a strong emphasis on SEO: search engine optimization. Implementing SEO can be summarized to creating high-quality website content such as articles, images, videos, and product descriptions, while using relevant keywords. Proper SEO increases the likelihood that your content reaches a more prominent position in the organic search results of search engines like Google. However, not everyone longer uses this classic search engine. TikTok is the new favorite for Gen Z: around 74% uses this social platform as a search engine, a majority (51%) prefers the popular channel over Google.

If you ignore this response, you let the algorithm know that you share knowledge and information

8 tips to incorporate social search into your social media strategy in 2024

It’s because of this reason that social SEO is a crucial part of your online strategy for 2024. Below, you’ll find 8 tips that will help your brand capitalize on this trend, leading to better visibility and discoverability online.

  1. Talk like your customers 
    To make sure your assets make an impact you need a deep understanding of your audience. Ask yourself what it is that resonates with them and try to understand which questions they have – including where they go to seek for answers. Use this knowledge to develop targeted content which you can consequently post on the channels where your audience is most present. To discover which channels are the most popular within your demographic, you can use the tools that each social platform provides, such as Instagram Insights, LinkedIn Analytics, Google Search Console, and Facebook Audience Insights. In addition to general terms, realize that spoken search terms are on the rise. The questions asked via voice are often more specific, which leads to more in-depth (and complete) answers. Ensure that your content addresses these more specific questions people might have via long-tail keywords.
  2.  Create data-driven content
    Once you have figured out how to speak to your customers, it’s time to discover what it is they want to know. Analyze keyword data and trends using tools like Google Trends, Google Keyword Planner, BuzzSumo, Answerthepublic, Serpstat, or keywordtool.io. This information not only provides insight into current questions but also reveals potential future trends and needs. By anticipating questions that people are still hesitant to ask, you stay ahead of the curve. Tools like Exploding Topics, Trendsmap (focused on X), and Talkwalker can assist you with this.
  3. Experiment!
    A target audience is a dynamic phenomenon: preference and behavior changes over time. Therefore, it’s up to you to experiment with different types of content, hashtags, keywords, formats, and the time of posting. What happens if you use a carousel post instead of your usual collection of text-based posts? Or use a slider on LinkedIn instead of a post with a link? Utilize methods like A/B testing, multivariate testing, or split testing to gain insights. Assumptions only get you so far, it’s informed choices that will make the difference between a sale and a lost prospect.
  4. Avoid ‘post and ghost’
    You use social media for a reason, and one of the most important reasons is a connection with your community. When someone reacts to your post, they invest time and effort. If you ignore this response, you let the algorithm know that you share knowledge and information, but it’s a one-way street. Instead, actively engage in a dialogue with your users: respond to questions and show that you appreciate feedback. Ask follow-up questions or tag someone who can make a valuable contribution to the discussion. As soon as this ‘third party’ joins the dialogue, your outreach expands. Every like, reaction, tag, repost, or share from your community shows the algorithm that your content is valuable.
  1. Quality over quantity 
    The pressure as a brand to be a thought leader on a multitude of subjects increases the possibility that you create duplicate content. This means that you cover subjects that have already been covered by other brands, hereby creating content that already exists on the platform and has no added value. Instead of trying to be an expert on everything, focus on quality content that provides insights, promotes critical thinking, and adds value within your field. To be an actual thought leader is to be original, rather than repetitive because of a fear of missing out. Authority on social media is gained primarily through unique, original insights.
  2. Avoid keyword stuffing 
    The more often a keyword appears in copy, the easier it becomes for the platform to determine the topic of the post, and the more valuable your content becomes, right? Not every robot agrees. With algorithms and search engines gaining more intelligence every day, they go beyond the singular term and focus on the copy as a whole – including the context. The deciding factor nowadays is relevance. A well-structured post copy or linked article on the topic of marketing strategy gets allocated a lot more authority than a text where the term ‘marketing strategy’ is simply used a lot. How to avoid keyword stuffing? Focus on synonyms for a more attractive text in general and a bigger shot at broad indexation specifically. If you want to know which keywords your target audience uses, use tools like BuzzSumo, Ubersuggest, Ahrefs, Google Keyword Planner, or YouTube Analytics.
  3. Use alt texts
    Want to make sure that your content gains even more attention? Add alt texts to your images. These texts describe the image at hand. Although AI tools are becoming increasingly smart at analyzing and recognizing images, a written description provides certainty. An alt text can make the difference between that first or second spot in the search results: the more certainty the system has that you provide the sought-after content, the more your content will be preferred by the algorithm.
  4. Stay up to date
    Every social platform forms a vast community where trends appear and just as quickly disappear from the audience’s conscience. If you want to stay relevant as a business, it’s important to continuously check in and be flexible in your production timelines.
    By staying sharp and up to date regarding the latest ‘what’s what’ you keep your audience focused and engaged. Keep in mind that each platform deserves its own approach in this matter: TikTok is lightning-fast, while Facebook or LinkedIn have a more laidback, informative style of communicating. If you notice a decline in your engagement, no need to panic. Small adjustments in captions or targeting can already make a huge difference.

By implementing social search in your 2024 content planning, you unlock a potential new following and offer content to your current followers that provides a better fit with their interests. Good luck!

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