On October 9th and 10th I had the opportunity to participate in the PR News Social Media Conference and SEO Workshop. Located at the Grand Hyatt in New York City, the two day information sessions were filled with incredible tips, detailed case studies, and the latest tools in social media and SEO. Three of the biggest takeaways from the conferences were:
1. The Power of Video
Did you know that by a vast margin, video is the highest ranking form of content that users interact with? Did you also know that less than half of brands are taking advantage of them?
Throughout the Social Media Conference, presenter after presenter made reference to how important it was to use videos within your messaging to increase engagement with your followers. Some ideas included embedding videos from your social network sites into your blog post, giving users the ability to connect with you socially via your website. Another option is to use videos on your social media accounts as a way to highlight the article you linking to.
2. How Good are Your Listening Skills?
Even when you think your company is paying attention to your followers, how well are you actually listening to what they are saying?
There was an incredibly interesting session dedicated to strategies for becoming a better listener on social media. Krisleigh Hoermann of the American Heart Association explained how marketers “have to listen before we engage”- meaning it is important to identify the needs of your followers because it will help you to create a more targeted message that fosters further engagement.
She also went on to further explain the benefits of listening on social media as depicted in this chart:
After gaining an understanding as to why you should listen, the speakers explained who besides your followers you should keep an eye on. Your company’s employees, competitors, and industry thought leaders are three other groups that have a strong impact on your brand. Listen and respond effectively to all four of these groups and your brand will see an increase in your social media conversation.
3. If You Haven’t Already- Say YES to SEO Tools
The benefits of various SEO tools were discussed during both PR News conferences and play a huge role in your website’s overall strategy. During the Social Media Conference, Google’s Krista Seiden
gave a powerful lecture on how to make Google Analytics work for you brand. From basic analytic tools to more advanced tips such as UTM tagging and creating custom dashboard, she covered a wide range of topics that would help marketers in their efforts to analyze if they are achieving higher site traffic, engagement and visibility.
provided a full SEO breakdown during the workshop on October 10th. When discussing SEO best practices he reminded attendees to be “SMART” when planning your desired goals:
After setting your SEO goals, Mike shared helpful guidelines on how to provide an SEO audit and how to determine its success. Google AdWords and Google Webmaster Tools are just two of the helpful tools he stressed to use when creating an SEO campaign. When it comes to analyzing your SEO efforts, Google Analytics will give you a detailed reports of your site’s performance, along with information to better understand where people are coming from to get to your site.
Overall, the PR News’ Social Media Conference and SEO Workshop were incredibly valuable in staying up to date with the latest trends in the digital marketing industry.