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Many of the most successful SEO strategies that you should strongly consider pursuing in 2011 have a lot to do with getting social.  Engaging with your readers or customers is not only a great PR move, but it can also lead to improved visibility and increased traffic.  What are the best ways to do this?

Start by giving your viewers/readers/customers the opportunity to leave reviews and feedback.  This way, they can help your online presence grow.  Feedback, whether about a service, product, or site does matter and customer comments can boost your visibility.  Both good and bad experiences has an impact, and while you can make it to the top of the SERPs on the merit of negative reviews, you do want to take every step to create a positive reputation.

You can’t control the comments customers make on your Twitter or Facebook pages – and you shouldn’t.  If there are complaints, turn this into an opportunity to reach out, correct negative impressions, and re-engage customers.  Domino’s Pizza did exactly this in their successful TV ad campaign, showing you can turn a negative into a positive by addressing it directly.

Closely related to this is harnessing the power of social media.  Experts predict that about 10 percent of all online marketing efforts will be concentrated on social media.  Google and other search engines give weight to social media sites in searches, so mentions in Twitter and Facebook really do add up to good results.  Your profile pages should be professional and well-kept.  Include links, articles, contests, videos, and other items of interest to pique readers’ interest.

The worst thing you can do is sign up for a profile on every social media site you can find – and then forget about them.  Target a few; Facebook and Twitter are universally popular, but you may also select one or two that is specific to your industry, business, or niche.  Then work them.  Update your content regularly with quality content, and always respond to fans, friends, and followers.  Again, this is especially vital if you receive negative feedback.  Don’t let it sit there unanswered.

Tweaking your social media efforts with established SEO tactics, such as using targeted keywords, can help make your campaign that much more effective.  There is a host of beneficial SEO strategies that you can – and should – pursue, but getting social remains one of the top goals of 2011.

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