When most people hear the words ‘social media’, their mind conjures images of Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, and maybe a LinkedIn profile or too. Thanks to the remarkably success of a small few social media websites, we often end up passing over alternative social sources that are just as much, if not more valuable than those we initially gravitate to.
Take Google’s Profiles service, for example. The search giant has expanded into offering its users a dynamic profile, similar to that available on LinkedIn and other professional websites. It includes a simple biography, a series of interests and favorite things, and get this – a dofollow link from one of Google’s domains to your website. How’s that for social-search optimization?
The other less-than-cherished social website for SEOs is YouTube. Its links are nofollow, its users generally dislike spam, and it takes an aggressive approach to unwanted advertising. But that’s on its video pages. If you have a popular profile page, it likely generates social traffic and carries an adequate PageRank score, giving you a social traffic generator and an outbound linking source.
What about Yelp and other local directories? These websites aren’t exactly public relations assets or dedicated marketers – they’ve been the target of nasty accusations by the media and they aren’t the best for businesses. But they offer links, citations, and content, often in abundance. If you own and operate a local business, use local social networks to generate region-specific inbound links.
At its heart, social media isn’t just about the biggest, most popular, and most well-known services or websites. It’s about sociability – something that almost any website, no matter how big or small, can provide. Seek out social sources that are ultra-relevant to your website’s subject matter and you’ll be rewarded with links, traffic, and rankings in abundance.