John Akerson's Thoughts

Business, technology and life

Rinse and Repeat

Your hair is dirty today, so you will probably wash it. You will probably use shampoo and conditioner, and on both bottles, the label says “rinse and repeat.” Social media and Search Engine Optimization are two arts that you can think of as Shampoo and Conditioner. They are mutually supportive, like shampoo and conditioner, and both do well with a continuous process of improvement- that you can think of as Rinse and Repeat.

That might or might not be good advice for conditioner and shampoo, I’ve always suspected the reason for that blurb on the bottle was to get people to use more shampoo, or perhaps for people who wash their hair weekly. Regardless for the shampoo directions, everyone should realize that “rinse and repeat” is thoroughly outstanding advice for both Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Social Media.

Social media and Search Engine Optimization are two arts that you can think of as Shampoo and Conditioner. They are mutually supportive and both do well with Rinsing and Repeating.

I read two nice articles today: “7 signs that you ignored your social media plan” on Outspoken media, and “How to optimize your site for search” in Inc. magazine.

I read the Social Media Plan article in Outspoken Media, and realized that Rinse and Repeat is critical to social media. When a person or company contributes no unique content and no other value to social media, there should be an expectation of *no return on the non-investment.* To get the best return, a company has to produce and add unique content, invest thought, words, communication, time and perhaps even some money. Thanks Lisa for a great guide to “what not to do.”  The important thing is DOING. It is important to rinse and repeat. Social media requires a continuous and constant care and feeding. If you did not do it today, do it now. If you did not do it yesterday, do it today. The value of social media as an element of your marketing plan is DIRECTLY related to how much you contribute to social media.

As I was reading the article on SEO, I realized there a considerable number of things in common between SEO and Social Media. The two arts both require rinse and repeat. They both thrive when tended to. SEO results and Social Media results are positive or negative in proportion to the resources that are devoted to both of them.  Both are elements that are built-in. SEO is built into each page, and Social Media is built into the culture.  Both are hard to quantify. Both benefit from evaluation of efforts, results and the relationship between effort and results, and both SEO and Social Media benefit from an approach that involves a cycle continuous improvement.  Call that Rinse and Repeat for SEO and Rinse and Repeat for Social Media – but the analogy from hair care goes further:  Social media benefits SEO & and SEO benefits Social media in the same way that conditioner works well on hair that has just been shampooed.  Social Media and SEO are mutually beneficial.

That’s something to think about when you rinse and repeat. 

What do you think?

September 13th, 2010 Posted by | Continuous Improvement, Marketing, People | 3 comments

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  • Rachel Christmann

    I have heard this analogy before about SEO and Social Media. I never understood the collaborative power of this combination- mostly because I was absorbed in social media efforts and didn’t take the time to sit down and learn more about SEO. But my days have slowed and now I have time to read more about SEO; and I am gradually starting to grasp what all the hype around organic growth is– including SEO. I’ve got my shampoo but have been missing my conditioner. :) - Rachel

  • JohnAkerson

    Thank you for the comments Rachel!