austtr - 2:29 am on Oct 10, 2010 (gmt 0)
Thanks Ted... some food for thought (pun intended)
Over the years we have seen the next big thing come along that supposedly ticks all Google's boxes. If memory serves me correctly, Matt Cutts once said how great blogs were and how Google loved them. Now the majority of blogs are just so much auto-generated flotsam drifting around in an ocean of no-followed crud.
IMO, if there is one thing that Google ALWAYS does, sooner or later, it is to rub out any gain that comes from webmaster manipulation. I'm trying hard to not become an old dinosaur set in outdated ways and ideas, but I have this uneasy feeling that success with social media has to be built on deliberate webmaster manipulation before anything happens.
It takes a conscious decision to launch a FB group that syncs with my primary income stream, I have to actively solicit for strangers to follow me, I have to generate "stuff" that gives them a reason to follow me, I have to decide how I'm going to drive those eyeballs to my money pages ... etc etc etc.
To my way of thinking, that is all a very deliberate effort to manipulate an outcome that drives traffic to a website. As I said earlier, Google's past history shows that sooner or later they will rub out any gains seen to be coming from non-genuine manipulation.
I'd be interested in arguments that say social media is a logical extension of traditional SEO that influences Google search results.
However, I do understand that social media is all about driving traffic direct to your site without the need of a Google ranking result. As has been mentioned on several occasions in earlier posts, that is going to be very dependent on your niche. A Britney Spears underwear malfunction will probably generate more interest that a dissertation on the architectural styles of Christopher Wren.