Last week I talked about how I was going to be doing a seven part series on how to run a successful link building campaign and where you should begin. This week I will be talking about social linking (or as it’s more commonly known: social networking).

Social networking is the huge buzz right now and everyone seems to be doing it. So it is no surprise that SEO companies have made it part of their SEO campaigns. But are they effectively doing social the right way? Some questions you need to ask yourself before jumping into the social world are:

  • Do I have the time to spend on social linking?
    • To be effective in the social world you have to be willing to spend the time and, sometimes, the money on maintaining it. Social networking can be very time consuming and you need to prepare yourself for spending time on it to make it work, or paying someone to take care of it for you.
  • Are my competitors doing it?
    • Finding out if your competitors are already in social networking is a good way to help gauge how involved your site should be in the social networks. If they are not in there yet you may have the chance to put yourself ahead of all of them by jumping into it early. You can also see what they are doing in the networks and whether it is successful or not. Then you can either do it better or even take a page out of their book.
  • What social networking sites will work for my site?
    • With how many different social sites that are out there now a days it is very important that you get into the right one. While Digg, Reddit and Technorati may be some of the biggest social sites, their target audiences just may not work for you. You need to do research to find out which social sites are going to benefit you the most You should not be submitting to Digg or Reddit if it will yield you no traffic. That would be a waste of your time, energy and money.

While you may find that the big social sites don’t fit your business there are still alternatives, such as Facebook and the more popular Twitter. With Facebook you can now create a specific page that is just for your business. On here you can place running deals or even coupon codes for your fans. You can hold similar promotions on Twitter. Twitter has become one of the most popular social sites as of late. Everyone from celebrities to athletes are using Twitter. This generally means you should be too. Dell has made over 1 million dollars in revenue just with their Twitter account. All they do is post deals and discounts that you can get, just by following them. This is something almost every business can get into and benefit from.

Social networking provides backlinks as well, though it is debatable as to how much value the search engines place on them. Social networking is more or less a great source for traffic, as long as you manage it right. If you have a blog (I will be talking about this later in the series) be sure to socially submit the posts that you feel need the exposure. Make sure you write good content that people want to read about, and be engaging with your social efforts while responding to other people’s submissions. The more you engage in the social networks, the more people will engage back with you.

Next week I will be talking about link modifications. As always I’d love to hear from all of you as to your thoughts on this subject as well as what has worked and not worked for you.