social media search bar

How to Use Keywords to Improve Your Social Media Marketing in 2020

By: Nick Chasinov, Founder & CEO, Teknicks

June 10, 2020

Social media platforms are inherently unpredictable. At any time, platforms can make algorithm changes that drastically impact organic reach (like Facebook’s newsfeed update in 2018). This makes relying on social media platforms for consumer engagement a risky business venture. However, when social media posts are coupled with insightful keyword tactics, user engagement can blossom.

The trick is executing exceptional marketing. How do you reach the consumers that aren’t following you? This is where a great keyword strategy becomes a nonnegotiable part of your brand’s success. Some people think viral social media posts—whether industry- or internetwide—are a matter of luck. Yes, luck is a factor, but I believe that it’s a small part of an equation that begins and ends with high-quality keyword research.

Keywords are how you expand your reach. If you already rely on keywords to drive traffic, either through SEO or PPC advertising, then you already have a grasp of the topics most relevant to your target audience. But be warned: Keyword usage in Google searches is not an exact predictor of usage on social media platforms, as each platform has its own unique user behavior.

Anatomy of a Social Media Keyword Strategy

Social media keywords work similarly to the ones on your website. For example, if you produce a blog post on your plumbing business’s website, then it needs to include relevant keywords like “plumber.” Without those keywords, Google won’t realize that your content applies to related search queries.

In turn, incorporating keywords into your social content enhances visibility, allowing you to expand your reach and drive traffic to your various digital properties.

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all strategy for social media keyword usage, so you’ll need to build custom approaches that account for differences in user behavior. With that in mind, here are some tips for leveraging keywords on some of the most popular social platforms.

Facebook: Businesses can get seriously granular with audience segmentation on Facebook. Use this to your advantage. Discover different audiences’ interests and priorities and leverage highly specific keywords.

Twitter: The life span of a tweet is 18 minutes. Things change fast on Twitter, and your keywords should, too. Harness the mercurial newsfeed by updating your database often to discover which terms and hashtags best resonate with your audience.

Instagram: One of the main benefits of Instagram is its location targeting capabilities. Posts with locations generate 79 percent more engagement, so geotarget your keywords and post at the best times for your audience. You can garner more engagement by using specific keywords for certain cities, states or regions.

YouTube: YouTube uses Google’s algorithm to recommend content. When you enter your audience’s keywords or phrases into the search bar, user-generated topics will populate. Create content around these audience interests.

Pinterest: Like YouTube, you can use Pinterest’s search bar to pinpoint what’s trending in a given topic group, but be aware that those trends change as fast as the ones on Twitter. Use this platform to discover which user-generated topics are relevant to your brand, moment by moment.

LinkedIn: Conversations on LinkedIn are just that: conversational. As a result, keywords that work in search engines don’t always resonate in social posts on this channel. The solution is to make sure your posts and your keywords suit your brand’s products and services.

Remember: Success on social media is dependent upon a combination of keyword usage and content creation. Investing in one without the other won’t produce results. Use this guide as a starting point to generate keywords relevant to your audience on each channel, but don’t forget to heavily invest in creating valuable, relevant content based on those keywords.

Nick Chasinov is the founder and CEO of Teknicks, a research-based internet marketing agency certified by Google in Analytics, Tag Manager, and a Google Premier AdWords partner.

At The Social Shake-Up