While your SEO efforts may be focused primarily on increasing backlinks, social shares cannot be ignored. Social shares are important for improving your SEO. Not only are social shares a ranking signal, but more shares leads to more exposure – which leads to more natural links. But how should you go about sharing your content in 2019? Here are some of the best techniques to use.
Get the Basics in Place
There are a few basics of successful social sharing that you need to get in place before we go into the following strategies. First, you need to become a sharer. If you don’t already share content created by other people, that needs to change. You are far more likely to get shares of your own content when you share other people’s content. This is especially important when it comes to sharing content created by industry influencers. And when you share content, don’t just hit the share button: add a comment, provide some insight and explain why you are sharing it.
Secondly, make sure that sharing your content is easy to do by adding relevant social share buttons at the end of your content. (If you have a WordPress site, there are lots of social plugins that make this really easy.)
Get Quotes from Influencers
Creating high-quality content just isn’t enough these days. After all, there’s a lot of great content out there already. You need to give people a genuine reason to share your content – and that is not always easy to do.
One smart tactic is to get quotes from influencers and use them in your content. This is simple enough to do, but you have to go about it in the right way.
Remember all that sharing you’ve been doing? This will come in handy now. If an influencer sees that you are following them and engaging with their content, they are more likely to be open to a quote request.
Once you have an idea for your content, draft it out – but don’t write it up yet. Instead, reach out to some influencers and tell them about your latest topic. Ask them for an expert quote in return for a link back to their site.
(If you need to find more influencers, use a tool like BuzzSumo to find out which content in your niche is getting the most shares.)
Once you get a quote, create and publish your content, then inform the influencer that it’s live. With any luck, they will share it with their followers.
Create Round-Up Posts
This is a similar technique but takes it to the next level. With round-up posts, you create your entire piece of content around quotes or content from other people. The simplest option is to find some of the best posts published in your niche in the last month. Link to them and write a paragraph about why your readers should check them out, then share the post on Twitter and mention the authors. Everyone likes to get recognition for their work, so this could lead to some more shares.
Another option is to create your post around a selection of expert quotes. Rather than asking for a quote from a single influencer, you ask 10 or 20 people. A simple option is to send them all the same question and ask for a short answer. Put all the answers together, and you have your expert guide. This is even more powerful because the experts have invested in the content. They will also be pleased that they have been mentioned alongside other experts (it’s a nice little ego boost!), hopefully leading to some more shares.
Contact Your Sources
A variation on the above tactic is to simply include some expert sources in your content and link to it (this could be blog posts, useful statistics, reports, etc). Mention the website and content creator by name when you link to the resource, and then reach out to the author on Twitter to say thanks (or mention their Twitter handle when sharing your post).
Alternatively, go one step further and reach out to them by email. Write a personal email saying that you found their content useful and linked to it, send them a link to your content, and ask for a quick share if they find it useful – some may well be happy to share it.
Use More Compelling CTAs
A lot of sharing comes down to making it easy for your readers, as already mentioned. But as well as simply including social share buttons, make sure you ask for a share using a compelling call to action (CTA). Be clear and specific with your CTAs. Crucially, give people a reason to share your content by showing the value of doing so. (e.g. If you create a blog post on tips to finding a new job, write a CTA along the lines of: ‘Share this with someone who is searching for their dream job’) It may only lead to a small increase in shares, but they will add up over time.
Add Visual Appeal
On all the major social sites, visual appeal matters. People are far more likely to notice your content if it has nice images or a video because it makes the content stand out more.
The stats suggest that:
At the very least, use some images and graphs to break up your content.
Another smart tactic is to forge alliances to get some initial shares on your content. Find people in your niche who are not your direct competitors. Perhaps you both serve the same or similar customers but don’t compete with each other. Then simply agree to help each other out by sharing each other’s content. Build up a little network of alliances, and this can be an effective way to get your first few shares to get the ball rolling. Every time you publish some new content, let your network know, and you could get a dozen or so shares straight away – which will hopefully lead to more.
(There’s nothing to stop you getting your friends and family in this network too – every share helps!)
Share Multiple Times
When it comes to actually sharing your content, don’t just share it once and forget about it. Aim to share the same content multiple times. To do this properly, don’t just repeat the same tweet or post. Create between 10 and 20 different tweets or Facebook posts with each one taking a slightly different angle. Then use a tool like Buffer to schedule your shares at different times of the day over a week or so. More people will see the content as a result, hopefully leading to more shares.
Advertise Your Content
All of the techniques mentioned so far have been free. They may take time and persistence, but they essentially don’t cost a thing. Another strategy to get more shares is to pay for it.
We won’t go into too many details here on social advertising, but it is certainly something to keep in mind. If you’re struggling to get more eyes on your content and more shares, you may want to consider boosting your Facebook post or even using a service like Outbrain to promote your content around the web.
There are lots of options available, so it’s worth experimenting with a few and seeing what sorts of results you get.
Get More from Your Content
High-quality content has many benefits, including demonstrating your authority and building trust with your visitors. But if you want more people to access your content, you need to maximise your shares.
Remember, more shares will also help your SEO – and the more people who see your content and enjoy it, the more natural links you will build. So use these tactics and start getting your content in front of more people this year.
If you would like help with your business’ SEO strategy, don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our extremely knowledgable SEO consultants who will be happy to speak to you regarding your requirements.