When someone mentions your company in an online post, does it make a difference?
The short answer is “yes,” definitely. The long answer is, without some tender loving care and attention it may get lost in a sea of information and quickly vanish without any positive effects.
Standing out and getting noticed online is challenging. Once you have been mentioned or reviewed online, it’s important to take a couple of extra steps to make sure you get the recognition you deserve. Google’s algorithm built around the search-decide-buy cycle weighs heavily on engagement as a signifier to website value. That means the more engagements you can show from different people and businesses, the higher you will rank in search engine rankings. And when it comes to converting that traffic to sales, statistics prove that social proof is a significant decision factor in the online buying process. Reviews and referrals increase your bottom line.
As you grow your business and online presence, building on these engagements (mentions, reviews and referral links) is an important part of your SEO strategy. An online influencer’s public social mention can be marketing gold. Even if a mention doesn’t come from a high ranking online presence, you can still leverage the power of this referral. Here are seven actions you can take when you receive a social mention to leverage that social currency and create more sales.
- Be gracious. The tone with which you receive a mention is very important. Always be sure to acknowledge those that have helped you to this point (customers, staff, the person who mentioned your company, etc.). When you’ve received something, make sure you always give back first.
- Tag influencers in posts. A rising tide raises all ships. Take time to share your post and tag influencers and people who regularly comment or post about a similar topic or who you feel may be interested in what has been shared. Help them further their message with your shared story. Bolster your tagging efforts by tweeting small excerpts and key points as you tag different people to create engagement and variability with your messages.
- Add it to your signature. This is a great way to add additional resources and social proof to your email correspondence. Add links to your mentions or the recognizable logos of places in the media where you’ve been talked about as a tagline in your emails, like “See my latest article in The Huffington Post here:”
- Add a media bar to your website. Immediately increase your reputation and influence on your website by prominently displaying a logo of the websites where you have been mentioned or published. Showing recent testimonials is also very powerful. Adding this social proof before your call to action directly increases your interaction with current customers.
- Share it with your investors and potential joint ventures. Keep your business top of mind with your investors, supporters and potential supporters. Sharing good news and mentions from other people is a great way to promote your business.
- Incentivize referrals. Make your company worth mentioning! Create a rewarding referral program for brand ambassadors, current users, and influencers in your target market. This is a larger scale project but works really well as a way to incentivise people who are already your users and fans to mention you to their networks. Affiliate programs work best if you’re able to connect your product to key influencers of your target market.
- Increase conversions. All the traffic in the world won’t turn into sales unless a clear opportunity is available. Make sure the URL link that you share is a page that converts. Study your analytics and build your page to match the buying process of social proof and call to action. Clearly guiding new traffic to your product will make all your efforts worthwhile.
Any mention of your company online can be extremely beneficial but it can also get lost quickly in the sea of information. Making sure you take action to leverage every part of your online reputation will help not only your search engine ranking but your bottom line.
A version of this post originally appeared here.