Social Media and SEO: Avoid The Dark Side

Social Media & SEO Strategy

With Social Media and SEO a white hat approach is ALWAYS the way to go. In a world where we don’t “Search” for anything anymore, we “Google It” you’ll need to adapt to change or be left in the dust. When it comes to social media and SEO Google is smarter than you, and your marketing degree doesn’t make you special. I like to talk a lot about Search Engine Algorithms and how their so good at understanding the difference between naturally organic media and Black Hat marketing campaigns. Well the 800 pound Gorilla in the jungle is the Google Search Algorithm called Humming Bird. Humming Bird is ruthless, quick, efficient and bloody unforgiving to those who attempt to outsmart it. Since the dawn of the web search engine companies have tried to build algorithms that could analyze the content of webpages and return search results which matched the relevancy of a user’s inquiry. Over time these algorithms have gotten better and better at understanding the “content” of webpages and how humans think. In an effort to gain traction on the web and exposure to a larger base of customers, companies have employed two primary tactics in the world of Search Engine Optimization to achieve publicity. Black Hat SEO and White Hat SEO. Think of it like the dark side of the force versus the light side. When you’re competing for a larger piece of the market share it can be very tempting to give in to the dark side in order to boost your page rankings, but in the end you might just lose a hand and Google’s Humming Bird will be the Jedi Master cutting it off!

So these two approaches, Black Hat and White Hat, what’s that all about anyway?

I’m so glad you asked! In short, Black Hat tries to understand the way Search Engines think and trick them into ranking pages higher by appealing to specific criteria in order to fool the Search Engine’s Algorithm into thinking that a page is more relevant than other pages or more relevant than it actually is to a certain subject matter. In reality, Black Hat really isn’t “Optimizing” anything but instead it’s just telling the Search Engine that a particular page is more valuable than it actually is. White Hat on the other hand is all about a simplistic Philosophy. “Make the page genuinely more relevant to the subject matter and make the user experience friendlier”. So if White Hat is better why would anyone resort to the dark side? The answer is simple. Quicker Results.

It takes creativity, talent and skill to craft a great White Hat Webpage and Black Hat promises powerful results in a short amount of time. So basically the same reason anyone turns to the dark side! But there is always a price that comes along with the power granted by the dark side. Just as Black Hat Thinkers are always trying to come up with new ways to fool the Search Engines, Search Engine companies like Google are always evolving their Algorithms to adapt and overcome Black Hat Tactics… and punish them! So this latest Algorithm update, Humming Bird, focuses on understand human conversation and the meaning of words and sentences. It tries to understand what people actually “mean” and it is exceptionally good at realizing when something about a page’s content or coding has gone over to the dark side. So what does Humming Bird mean for White Hat SEO? Nothing! Its business as usual! And THAT is the true power of White Hat. It usually doesn’t suffer when Algorithms evolve.

Did You Know Social Media makes up at least 30% of your legitimate SEO value?

I’ve said this since the beginning – just write good content and you will be rewarded by the Algorithm Gods. Try to fool them and you will end up chained to a rock with a giant Humming Bird eating your liver every morning. At 3ative Arts we like to keep up with the latest trends and we think Black Hat is funny. We laugh at it a lot actually. The latest Black Hat tactic focuses on leveraging the power of Social Media which accounts for about 30% of the total SEO value of your online presence. Musical Artists have spent tens of thousands buying fake likes and shares on Facebook and Twitter and there are companies whose sole business model is to set up hundreds of fake social media profiles to generate fake virality for a song, music video or marketing campaign. Well it works! But like all Black Hat Tactics it doesn’t work for very long and now those companies are paying the price in red. There is no better way to punish a company than to negatively impact its revenue and that is exactly what Humming Bird can do by cutting off your online exposure at the knees!

If all this Black Hat stuff seems like a lot of work for short term results – with a tons of risk, well… we agree with you! That is why we craft aggressive White Hat strategies. Does it take longer to generate real buzz on social media White Hat style? Of course it does! But once you do, you’ve gotten your golden ticket to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory and your darn near bullet proof! In fact SEO is exactly like Wonka’s Chocolate Factory… and remember what happened to those selfish kids who broke the rules? The Algorithms ate them! So kids, don’t get eaten by a giant Humming Bird, stay White Hat boys and girls – Have your Chocolate and eat it too!

-Valentino Pine

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