Why Content Strategy Is Crucial for Social Search

Why Content Strategy Is Crucial for Social Search

24th February 2012

This is a wrap up of the session “Why Content Strategy is Crucial for Social Search” from SES London 2012. The session had the speakers Chris Boggs (SES Advisory Board; Director, SEO, Rosetta), Rachel Hawkes (Account Director, Elemental) and Krista LaRiviere, (CoFounder & CEO, gShift Labs) speaking.

This session was concerned with how social media affects search results and activity within the search results. Concentrating on search results in .com given that we are not seeing everything on .co.uk (yet!), but definitely the shape of things to come.

Chris Boggs – Social & Search

“Focus on the user and all else will follow…” – Google’s 10 things

Google has a need for speed and to be current and in real time. With the advent of Caffeine, within one minute tweets would appear in search results. Now we are seeing the same with local results, and Google Plus being indexed within the hour. Google Plus as well as other social platforms satisfy a need for fresh content. If you are current, informative and using social platforms, especially on a local level, you are already enhancing your search results with social. This used to be filled with the news (still important), but social is ‘the way’ for everything that it current and hot.


  • We will see more listings from other social platforms as Google and other search engines evolve
  • Conversion rates – if you talk does anyone care?
  • Amplification rate – if you have a lot of followers and they are semantically connected to you – that could be a signal that your comments are important
  • Applause rate – positive clicks for social contribution, sharing etc
  • Economic value – they can track this and understand all this data and using it for logged in users
  • Read Louis Venters Post on the keynote speech from Avanash
  • Engage – creating a social community that is relevant to a specific topic, developing content, sharing content persistently about that topic is going to help you appear in the search listings

Rachel Hawkes – Content Strategy from a Marketing and PR perspective

Do you have a site or blog? Do you have a Facebook and Twitter channel? Do you consider yourself a publisher, if so, do you create content with your users in mind?

Questions to ask yourself when embarking on a Social Media campaign

  • Who – are you creating content for?
  • What – are you creating it for – what are you hoping to achieve?
  • When – do you need to place it – strategy?
  • Where – are you going to place it?
  • How – are you going to create it?

Rachel talks about TopMan as a case study in how to create unique content and have people interact with it on Social Media platforms and to have it found in search engines in real time. What they did was to go to the high street and pick on brand TopMan customers then load their pictures on to the Facebook page as part of a competition. Over 3 days, TopMan posted 77 photographs, which doesn’t sound like a huge number, but when you are dealing with social media connections, that provided to 22,000 direct engagements and over 1 million in cash purchases.

Rachel also talked about a competition with a Ubisoft competition for Just Dance, drawing on the popularity of celebrity to engage with the users, to create personal content for users and uploading pictures to Twitter creating a stream of photos in search engines and real time photo results.


  • Because it’s social – be flexible and adaptable
  • Create content specifically for your users
  • A brand TV advert will not necessarily become an instant viral YouTube hit!
  • Measure your social performance – sign ups, follows, likes
  • Optimise your content

Krista LaRiviere – Why content Strategy is crucial to Social Search?

“Isn’t it more about why an optimised content strategy is crucial for Social Search?”

Success in search and social is not possible if you are not taking the time to put together a well thought out content strategy and deliberately optimising for the keywords and keyword phrases that your prospects are using to find you.

Two reasons why anyone cares about search:

  1. You are a business or entity that wants people to find you or your website
  2. You are a person searching for something

The only thing bridging the gap between the two optimised content

SEO 4.0

  • Google will never penalise you for creating fresh relevant content on a timely basis
  • You still need to get backlinks, you just need to change the way you do them
  • 8-10% of the Google and Bing search algo take into consideration social signals
  • Relevance is at the core – social and search will continue to be connected
  • SEO may become known as optimised content strategy
  • Give Google what it wants
  • Use Tools!

This post in part made possible by a sponsoring from Majestic SEO who have the largest Link Intelligence database in Search.


Written By
Jackie Hole is an Award Winning Search Marketing consultant specialising in Paid Search, Conversion Improvement and Organic Search / SEO for the USA, Canada and European markets. Starting out in Multimedia & Interface Design, Jackie has over 15 years experience in online marketing and was recently awarded European Search Personality...
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.