With all the new social media channels do you actually need a website? In the short to medium term the answer to that is yes. It’s the home of your business, your brand and, if your website is “Social Media Ready” it also acts as a hub for all your social media activity.
You have probably already added LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook Icons to your website – and that’s a great start. But what else do you need to make your website ‘social media ready’?
You Need a Blog (and someone ready to start blogging)
Your blog (or blogs) should sit at the heart of your social media strategy and in an ideal world they should be fully integrated into your website. They provide a platform for opinions, ideas and timely comment as well as a potential way of receiving feedback from your readers.
In other words, they are the prime content that you can use to drive your social media campaigns – and if they are hosted within your website they are also an excellent way of driving traffic back to your site. Plus they’re very search engine friendly – but that’s for another blog.
Add Some Feeds from your Website to Social Media
A few years ago RSS feeds were everywhere – but nobody was really sure what to do with them. Well now, they are the ideal way of feeding information uploaded onto your website out to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and all the other social media platforms.
You might feed your blog headlines plus a link back to your website onto Twitter. Or your job vacancies into LinkedIn. Or events onto Google+. The choice is yours and can be refined so, for example, you could have events based in London only feed into your London Office Twitter feed, while Manchester events only feed into your Manchester Office Tweets.
This is a great way of automatically providing content onto social media – plus it drives traffic back to your website.
There are now several APIs available to further enhance the links between social media sites and your main website – the most successful being “Apply by LinkedIn” where someone visiting your website can automatically use their LinkedIn profile to create a CV and apply for a job.
Buttons/Links to your Active Social Media
You may well have buttons with links to your Twitter or Facebook page on your website. But what else can you do with these? Well a great first step is a Facebook “Like” or a Google+ button. These are ways of visitors liking your website and sharing your content with their friends and connections. In the case of Google+ this action also improves your search ranking.
There are also a series of sharing apps, that enable multiple sharing of content via the main social media sites as well as with content aggregators such as Tumblr.
Finally it is worth taking a look at Pinterest. This is a great way of showing the personality of your business – just ask people to pin the things they like. This might be images or your team and their workspaces or you could be more sector based; for example, if you were working in the Farming sector you might want to Pin landscapes or livestock. Here’s our latest pinterest board.
And Remember Mobile
46% of UK Facebook Traffic and 37% of Twitter traffic is posted using a mobile phone and any ‘Social Media Ready’ website must also be mobile accessible. You may have a separate mobile optimised website or use an adaptable design that resizes and reshapes depending on whether its viewed on a PC, iPad or mobile.
So how does your website score? And are there any other social media components that you’re already using? Let us know your thoughts.
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