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What is Social Media Optimization (SMO)?

SMO is the acronym used to refer to the concept of Social Media Optimization. The idea is to use social networks as a catalyst to increase and consolidate your brand’s online presence through specific techniques.

To understand SMO, you must keep in mind the unprecedented growth that social networks have shown in recent years. Platforms like Instagram, in which 80% of profiles follow at least one brand account, increasingly attract investment from companies that see their potential.

These channels are becoming central parts of Content Marketing strategies carried out worldwide, which causes a side effect. The volume of content production reached stratospheric levels. That makes it difficult to come up with original and relevant posts for the persona.

The important thing is that, with this growing wave of companies investing in social media, Google has adapted its algorithm to consider the engagement of your page as a ranking factor.

That means that in addition to the traditional SEO techniques, it is now necessary to create content that gains more and more likes and shares than its competitors. For this, Social Media Optimization was developed.

Why invest in Social Media Optimization?

In the past, it was easy to see the separation between marketing aimed at optimizing search engines (SEM) and focusing on the use of social networks (SMO). This line, today, practically no longer exists. The two strategies are not only allies but essentially complementary.

Therefore, the first and most obvious reason for applying SMO techniques is their importance to your SEO approach. This becomes even clearer with this study, which found that 50% of companies that do not experience SEO success do not bother to integrate both strategies.

So, let’s imagine that your company has a high level of engagement on Twitter. Although this fact does not guarantee a good ranking on Google, adding it to a good SEO strategy will enhance the results obtained. In other words, a balance between SEO and SMO is essential to your Digital Marketing success.

Next, we will further discuss the benefits that investing in Social Media Optimization can bring to your business. Read below!

The decrease in social media marketing costs
Today, any budget that contemplates a company’s marketing and advertising efforts must have a separate section for use on social media. After all, the ad platforms offered by channels such as Facebook and Instagram, although paid, make it possible to launch efficient campaigns.

It turns out that this efficiency is only possible based on studies related to consumer behavior, demographic characteristics, and interests. That happens because the ads work with a targeting tool that makes it easier to target an extremely specific audience.

However, there is no point in attracting the audience to your page if it does not match the expected quality. Do you know why?

Ad platforms charge according to goals reached. If someone sees the ad, performs the expected engagement, and is still not interested in the content, it means an investment that has been thrown away. As we know, it is necessary to establish a good conversion rate.

So, whether organic access, whether generated by ads, the fact is that applying SMO techniques increases the chances of someone being interested in the content offered by the page. Consequently, the return on investment becomes greater, which decreases the total cost of marketing aimed at social media.

Optimization of the integration between social media and other channels

If you have experience with applying Content Marketing strategies, you know that it is essential to diversify the channels in which you publish content. You also know there is no point in having a plurality of channels if they are not integrated coherently.

This ranges from the posted content to decisions related to the page design. After all, both the message conveyed by the brand and its visual identity are fundamental elements to enable quality branding. Therefore, it is necessary to be cohesive in all channels used.

That said, focusing on optimizing your social media makes this integration considerably easier. That happens because Social Media Optimization can establish best practices for managing your pages, ensuring a quality result.

With the certainty that the posts on social media are aligned with your company’s other channels, you can direct posts on your blog or website, for example, to your profile. Thus, you generate extremely qualified traffic, increasing the efficiency of investments in the area.

Reduced risk of content shock
Remember that we mentioned that global content production is experiencing exponential growth and imposing a challenge for professionals in the field? Along with this, we have the human limitation, which makes it impossible to consume all the content produced by the internet.

This phenomenon was addressed by Mark Schaefer in the book The Content Code, released in 2014. The author introduces the concept of content shock, which describes exactly what you read in the last paragraph.

So, by offering way more than the demand, you need to find smart solutions to ensure that your content will be consumed. The best way to achieve this goal is with SMO.

With optimized and relevant content, you put yourself one step ahead of the competition and have the chance to put your brand in a top-of-mind position. This means that, when faced with content from you and your competitor, the consumer will not hesitate to click on the one that represents your brand.

Maximized audience interaction and engagement

We currently deal with an audience called Consumer 4.0. According to Philip Kotler, this means that the relationship between the brand and its customers is an increasingly fundamental factor for the business’ success. This is because the current public sees companies as equals and, therefore, demands their humanization.

Several brands are already investing in strategies to show themselves as accessible to the customer. That is why many email marketing campaigns use the sender’s first name – in an attempt to deepen the relationship with the lead.

However, there is no better tool to create this relationship than a social network. Posts from a brand on Instagram, for example, stimulate the audience by leaving a like or a comment. In addition to showing the algorithm that people are interested in the page, this makes room for interaction.

As Social Media Optimization aims to increase the likes and comments received per post, we can say that it increases the interaction chances. An audience that talks to the business are more easily loyal. Thus, the strategy results in the generation of true brand advocates.

What are the main differences between SMO, SEO, SEM, and SMM?

If you’ve read this far, you already know what SMO means and understand the importance of aligning this strategy with SEO. Also, we talked briefly about the fine line between such concepts and SEM. Those are many different acronyms, right? This situation is very common in Digital Marketing, requiring a lot of attention.

Therefore, before we dedicate ourselves to explaining the most effective Social Media Optimization techniques, we will reserve a space to point out exactly what the main acronyms related to internet-oriented marketing mean. Keep reading and learn the differences!


As we mentioned at the beginning of the article, SEO concerns the set of organic techniques used to optimize the ranking of a web address on SERPs, Search Engine Results Pages. It’s a concept that integrates and aligns with the SMO.

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In turn, SEM has a broader scope than SEO. Search Engine Marketing includes all the techniques – paid or organic – used to optimize search engine results.

While it may sound similar to SEO, the concept has fundamental differences. While SEO focuses on points like readability and the keywords use, SEM can include practices like campaigns on Google Ads or sponsored links.

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SMM is for SMO as SEM is for SEO. Too complicated? Let’s explain! Remember how Search Engine Marketing has a broader scope than the techniques used in Search Engine Optimization? So SMM, which stands for Social Media Marketing, is broader than SMO. Therefore, this acronym represents all marketing actions aimed at social networks, whether organic or paid. The idea is to look for ways to put the brand in a position that generates engagement, relationships, and business opportunities.

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