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Should social bookmarking be part of my marketing strategy?

Can social bookmarking help your content go viral?
Can social bookmarking help your content go viral?
Media Moguls PR

Social bookmarking is one of those trending topics of today. As a matter of fact, you can spend hundreds of dollars right now just to find out what it's all about and get someone to do it for you. But a dollar spent is not always a wise investment, when you can get the information for free.

What is Social Bookmarking?

It's a public list of your favorites. Not all your favorites, just the favorites you want to share with others. You can add any website to your public list and retrieve it from any computer.

When you list a site in your bookmark list, anyone looking for that same type of information can do a search at the bookmark site and find the sites that you have bookmarked. It is like a search engine without all the trash. A few common examples are Digg, Reddit and Stumbleupon.

When you do a search in a search engine, you get all the sites that have something to do with the keywords you typed into the search box. But search engine optimization aside, it’s still fairly common to get a bunch of garbage sites that are loaded up with keywords but have poor content on the actual site.
The great thing about social bookmarking sites is the only sites you will find there are sites that other people have looked at and decided were worth saving for future reference. Real people have decided to save (bookmark) the sites, not robots. Real people also monitor the sites so if trash does get added, it is soon deleted.

The more people who bookmark a site, the more popular it becomes. For example, say you are selling widgets for a really great price. You bookmark your home page on a few of your favorite bookmarking sites. When someone is looking for a widget, they do a search at the bookmarking site and your bookmark comes up. They go look at your site and decide your prices are competitive, and they might want to come back later when they need another widget. So they add your site to their bookmarks for future reference.
When someone goes to one of these sites and types widgets into the search box, your site listing will come up in the search. If many people have bookmarked your site, you will be listed high in the search results. It's kind of like a voting system. If you site is good enough to bookmark, other people will want to see what all the fuss is about.

Unlike search engines where all you have to do right is SEO, the sites you will find in the Social Bookmarking sites are typically more quality sites that other people enjoyed enough to save. You don't really have to have a good site to get listed in the search engines.

How do you get started?

Do a search for social bookmarking, many sites will come up. Go to each site and register for an account, as they’re usually free. Once you have your account set up, start listing your site. Make sure you add proper tags to your listing.

Tags are the same as keywords with a twist. These sites will tell you what the most popular searches are on their site. You choose the tags that will work with your site or page and are also part of the popular list. Many of the sites will also offer a spot to write a small description of the site you are bookmarking. Add a description that uses some of your tag words for added benefit.

Building popularity

As with anything that is worth doing, this will take you a while to get it all set up and running smooth but the end result will be very well worth your effort.

Start with one bookmarking site and one page from your site. (Start with your squeeze page and build your newsletter list) Set up your account with the bookmarking site and add your page to the bookmarks. Make sure you use the best tags and description you can. (Check the popularity list on the site) Doing this in itself will help you get more traffic. Now you can go one step further and work both sides of the system.

Add a link to your site that will lead back to the bookmarking site that has your page bookmarked. Ask your visitors to bookmark your site on the social bookmarking site. Social sharing buttons at their finest.

The most important thing to remember is not to SPAM the sites. Make sure what you are listing is relevant and useful. You don't want to bring traffic to a page that has nothing but links, you will probably get banned from the bookmarking site. Only bookmark your pages that have actual content. Ask yourself if you would truly add this page to your own favorites list? If your answer is no then don't list it.

Social bookmarking, like any other marketing tactic, should be part of a larger, comprehensive marketing and branding strategy.

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