What Every Digital Marketer Needs to Know About the New Twitter and Google Partnership

In the digital world, it’s not too often we see old partnerships and platforms become new again but the recent announcement of Google partnering with Twitter to bring real time tweets to search results will rewrite the rules once again for SEO and social media. This is a rekindled romance as both companies ended a failed partnership in 2011 and many within the social and search communities thought full real time Twitter data in the SERP’s was a foregone conclusion.

Old is New Again

Back in late 2010, I had a first-hand experience to test Tweet uptakes in Google search results. At the time, RIM (BlackBerry) was launching a message missile back at Steve Jobs for Apple’s public comments towards BlackBerry. The PR and Social Media teams were ready to launch a tweet and blog post to counter Job’s “reality distortion field”. While the message was brand specific, it failed to highlight the competitor, Apple. By adding Apple keywords to the title and content, the message was ranked within seven minutes below the Wall Street Journal’s entry, thereby expanding the coverage of the tweet and blog post. This was my early lesson in getting as broad coverage for PR and blog posts through SEO and Social collaboration.

Twitter Does SEO

There is no denying Twitter is still a top platform with continued growth. The social media company has attained 288 million active users as indicated on the company’s about page. This past year, Twitter put its focus on growing the platform through SEO allowing Google to index top hash tagged pages. Yes, Twitter does SEO because people search on Twitter creating 19 billion queries per month.

Why should marketing departments and digital managers think this time will be any different and of value to pursue this new again opportunity?

5 Reasons to Optimize for Twitter in Google Search

This partnership shows the continued need for Social and SEO channel integration. Here are 5 reasons why your SEO staff or agency should be conversing with social media teams:

1. Expand Fresh Messaging

Twitter is the de facto search for current real-time news and information. The new search social partnership opens up the opportunity to ensure targeted keyword seed list are shared from SEO to social and PR. This allows a brand's messaging to reach a wide audience as possible. This creates a need for greater corporate blogging and user generated content since rank results will likely be determined by freshness, popularity and trustworthiness.

2. Push Out Competition

With Google accessing the stream of real time data from the Twitter API or “firehose” brands should expect greater competition from the addition of more tweets in the search results. Full integration of Social and SEO can aid in competing since the search engines will pull results from a wide variety of platforms.

3. Improve Social Sharing

With more relevant tweets in the search, marketers can expect potential increases in social participation as more consumers are drawn into conversation around search topics. In turn, more social sharing leads to increased opportunities for valuable links from external sources. The true value for SEO lies not in the links per se which as in most social platforms are “no follow” links that don’t pass link equity but in the social sharing that occurs and the subsequent linking that can happen.

4. Add Firepower for Reputation Management

When negative media and consumer comments populate the search results, SEO’s attempt to push down the negative with branded URL’s. A renewed push to attain rankings for multiple domains on a single search page will be supplanted with social results driving the need for continued social media optimization.

5. Reclaim Shelf Space

The amount of single brand coverage on the first page of search results has been reduced over the years and new initiatives such as Google’s Knowledge graph expands Google’s real estate. As more fact based searches become out positioned by the Knowledge Graph across areas such as music lyrics, cocktail recipes, and more; marketer’s need to reclaim lost shelf space with the new Twitter Google deal.

In conclusion, the overall implications and impact of real time tweets in Google search results will be ideally determined as both companies roll out the new service. Both enterprises re-visiting a “failed marriage” reveals the intense competition from the likes of Facebook encroaching on video and paid media. For marketers to stay current, it’s time to dust off the old Google Real Time Search playbook and start the conversation again between SEO and social disciplines.

This article was originally written by Darrell Zahorsky.