What Is A Brand Mention, And How Can You Use it For Your SEO
When it comes to building a comprehensive SEO campaign for your business, few things are more important than backlinks. For the uninitiated, backlinks, or sometimes called outbound links, are when another website links to yours. These backlinks are important because they are the primary means by which google determines your domain authority (DA); this is a numerical ranking that determines the priority of your website in S.E.R.P. When a website sends a link to you, they functionally share a small amount of their DA; the larger their DA, the more of a boost your DA receives. However, alongside the backlink you may have read about an often underutilized form of online representation, the brand mention; but what is a brand mention, and how can you use it for your SEO campaign?
What Is A Brand Mention?
Brand mentions, also called implied links, are when someone references your company, product, or brand online while not linking to them. Brand mentions occur primarily through product reviews, comment sections, blogs, news articles, educational content, or online marketing and outreach campaigns.
Are Brand Mentions Valuable?
Brand mentions are an important and valuable element of online marketing because they provide a means for companies to grow a natural online presence. Good brand mentions (positive reviews, reference, or customer feedback) paint your company or product in a positive light, increasing its perception online. Also, if utilized, brand mentions offer valuable avenues for customer interaction and link building (the details of which we will get into later).
Do Brand Mentions Affect SEO?
Most SEO specialists believe so, and it likely does, but there is no definitive evidence one way or another. Google is notably tight-lipped about the specificities on how its DA calculation works; however, we know that Google considers elements beyond backlinks and site performance in their assessment of a website’s authority. Many aspects of a website’s online presence affect its ranking; two prime examples being trustworthiness, and authenticity, both of which brand mentions build.
Brand mentions building trustworthiness and authenticity because they avoid many criteria that indicate link scams, while also showing natural interest and discussion on a product or company. Link scams are when a company purchases backlinks from a link farm or similar service. These farms provide an artificial increase to DA through illegitimate backlinks; this process is highly frowned upon by Google and, if discovered, will result in ranking penalties. Therefore, due to their lack of links, mentions by their nature show a genuine online presence; combined with their common mediums (reviews, comments, news articles, etc.) they reinforce the idea that people are talking about your website naturally.
So, while Google has never confirmed a direct relation to your S.E.R.P rankings, because brand mentions help your website grow in Google’s criteria for an authentic and trustworthy website, most SEO specialists believe that mentions do contribute to ranking.
Are There Tools To Track Brand Mentions?
Yes! There are several high-quality tools online designed to track brand mentions, here are just a few:
- Google Alerts: We’ve been a supporter of using Google’s online tools in the past, and this one is no different. Google Alerts is an easy to use, free, and straightforward tool for monitoring brand mentions online. All you have to do is log into your Google Account, go to the Google Alerts tool, and set an alert for your business, website, or product. Then, whenever someone mentions your product online, you will receive a notification in your email. You can also use the advanced options to set how often you receive notifications or only receive notifications from specific regions.
- Mention.com: As mention’s name would suggest, it tracks brand mentions and social media interactions. While not free like Google Alerts, Mention brings far more options and a more in-depth analysis of your online mentions. It aims to be a 24/7 brand monitoring tool, and the price per month is well worth it. It gives you in-the-moment notifications of brand mentions, allows you to customize your reports, and offers analytical data inside the insights center. However, the most beneficial aspect of Mention.com is the ability to respond to mentions through the interface.
How Do You Build Brand Mentions?
Building brand mentions requires time and effort like any other online marketing campaign, but it is no less rewarding. Building brand mentions not only increases your S.E.R.P ranking but also helps spread brand awareness and grows your online presence. Here are some of the best strategies for building more brand mentions:
- Good Customer Service and Responsiveness: This may seem like a no-brainer, but many smaller businesses often overlook the value of robust and responsive customer service. Most brand mentions come from social media or reviews; because of this, after you pick a tool to monitor your users’ mentions, it is in your best interest to interact as much as possible. Responding to customer inquiries and reviews, both good and bad, will help you build a dedicated user base online that will naturally spread the word about your company, service, or product; furthermore, responsiveness and customer interactions (primarily through a google business profile) help improve S.E.R.P rankings.
- Encourage Customers to Leave Reviews: A tried and true tactic, linking to feedback and review forms through texts or emails is a great way to build mentions. While the exact platform for reviews will vary by industry, your Google My Business is always the best bet overall.
- Build a Strong Social Presence: Having a solid social presence online is one of the most substantial factors in both mention building and general brand awareness. Having an active account on all major social media, producing consistent content for these accounts, and communicating and interacting with users on these social media accounts are all highly valuable practices for mention generation.
Brand mentions are an often underutilized element of brand awareness and SEO growth. Actively cultivating mentions online is shown to help build your S.E.R.P. rankings and naturally grow your company’s online presence; furthermore, it provides a valuable opportunity to grow more backlinks if you reach out to the publisher of the mention and ask for them to link to your site. However, cultivating mentions online can be a difficult process, especially when done alongside an entire SEO campaign, and we here at Fluidrank can help. We are a top Atlanta web design and SEO agency that can manage your SEO campaign while you run your business. If you want to inquire about our services, you can contact us here or browse our service packages here.