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4 Social Media Myths You Need to Bust

 

Social-Media-Myths

 

Social Media is Not a Serious Thing

Many so-called serious marketers look at social media as a casual platform for youngsters and less popular brands. Little do they realize that countless brands are making a killing on the social space. Even the B2B businesses have hopped on to the social bandwagon. In fact, social has become a way of life for many online marketers. It has metamorphosed into a powerful and indispensable channel for lead generation and customer service. So it’s less wonder that more and more businesses are investing more and more in this ever green medium. Last but not the least, it’s created a brand new crop of professionals who swear by social and make a living with it.

 

Social ROI can’t be Measured

This is a prevalent misconception. Many uninitiated marketers maintain that social is just not their cup of tea, thanks to its lack of measurability. But the reality is different. Return on investment from social is expressly measurable. But it depends on how you go about doing things. If you are certain about why something needs to be shared or measured, there are no two ways about it.  All you need to do is focus on tracking social URLs and conversions with a social media tool of your choice. If your objective is visibility, you would obviously look at metrics like shares, retweets and plus ones. But if your focus is on sheer conversions, then you certainly need to set up a conversion tracking mechanism. What’s more, competitive benchmarking is something that cannot be overlooked since it gives a sense of direction.

 

Too Much Sharing is Not Too Good

Social is all about sharing. Successful social media marketers are the ones who actually share frequently, thoughtfully and honestly. Though too much is not too good, anything that is actually useful to followers will be certainly well received. The challenge is knowing why, what, how and when to share. If the social media activity has a definite purpose, the anticipated results should follow eventually. Another important aspect that deserves special mention is the knowledge of the channels used to share the content. Be it a personal experience or business promotion campaign, a social media marketer always needs to master the functionalities of the channels used. Also, the person has to be aware of where the shared content goes and what happens to it. So the question of ‘how much is too much’ does not arise.
 

Negative Comments Should be Ignored

Surprisingly, disgruntled and skeptical customers aren’t really as serious as what they appear to be. All it takes is a simple ‘sorry’ to pacify them! It’s just that they want to vent their anger at the brand that failed to meet their expectations. It doesn’t always mean that the brand in question is inferior. Social media managers who ignore negative comments are actually shooing away customers who have been acquired after spending loads of money and lots of effort. Research has shown that a number of dissatisfied customers have returned after their issues have been resolved satisfactorily and quickly via social media. In fact, some of them become even more loyal to the brand.  Social is certainly a great new way to connect with customers. Experiences and examples have shown that customer complaints are actually opportunities to deepen engagements. 

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August 21st, 2014 by admin

6 Niches, 18 Forums – Begin Your Marketing Today

Forums are a GREAT place to build a good reputation and to siphon traffic from. Please notice that we said “build a good reputation”; spamming will give you a bad one – don’t do it!

Forums for Niches

Follow the rules, make good contributions and the forum members will want to read more of what you read both on and off the forum. Don’t forget to have a link to your website if the forum rules allow it!

Weight Loss

People are getting fatter and smarter. They are aware that they need to get rid of the fat; some of them for aesthetic reasons and others for health reasons. They are willing to pay for information, products or services that could help them lose weight. This makes the weight loss niche a winner!

Popular Forums in the Weight Loss Niche:

FitDay

http://www.fitday.com/fitness/forums/

Weight-Loss Fitness

http://weight-loss.fitness.com/forum.php

3 Fat Chicks On A Diet

http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/

Muscle Building

Muscle building keeps growing in popularity. People want to gain muscle to look like their favorite Hollywood celebrity or bodybuilder. These people are interested in workouts, dieting plans, supplements, equipment & accessories and more, making muscle building a great niche to get into. The top forums where muscle building enthusiasts like surfing are listed below.

Popular forums in the muscle building niche:

Bodybuilding.com Forum

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/

Muscle & Strength Forum

http://www.muscleandstrength.com/forum/forum.php

EliteFitness.com Forum

http://www.elitefitness.com/forum/

Seduction/Pickup

We are hard-wired to mate (most of us are…!). Some people want to have a smoother game; they are willing to learn…and purchase products that can help them get there! They also hang out on various pickup forums where they exchange tips and field reports. If that’s a niche that interests you, then have a look at these high-traffic forums where you can share your best tips.

Don’t forget to also respond to questions or help!

Popular forums in the seduction/pickup niche:

MPUAForum.com

http://www.pick-up-artist-forum.com/

Attraction Forums

http://www.theattractionforums.com/forum.php

Sedfast

http://www.pua-zone.com/

Love & Relationships

This niche is slightly completely different from the above (pickup). It’s the next level; when you’ve already got the girl or the guy. Relationships aren’t always easy. Marriage. Separation. Divorce. Some people can’t do it on their own. Those who can afford professional counseling go for it. Those who can’t, rely on cheaper alternatives in the form of books, ebooks and mp3s. They also spend quite some time on relationship message boards.

If you have (or can make) a product that could help these people, then check out the forums where they hang out in.

Popular forums in the love & relationships niche:

Love Forum

http://www.loveforum.net/forum.php

Relationship Forums

http://www.relationship-forums.com/

AskMen Love & Relationships Forum

http://boards.askmen.com/forumdisplay.php?41-Love-Relationships

Parenting

A lot of people are clueless when it comes to how to handle a baby or how to deal with kids issues. Some are them are actually pretty good, but want to be even better parents. People are spending more and more on their kids. Parenting is a niche that’s here to stay as long as people keep having kids (so it’s going to be here for quite some time…).

Popular forums in the parenting niche:

Parenting.com Community

http://forums.parenting.com/

JustMommies Message Boards

http://www.justmommies.com/forums/

Foster Parents Forum

http://www.fosterparents.com/fpgeneral/viewforum.php?f=1

Forex

High-risk. High-energy. Big money (to be made or lost in seconds). Some people have no clue on how it all works, but are very willing to learn due to the “cool” element of it, as well as the success stories that emerge from the Foreign Exchange market.

If you have some knowledge you could share (or maybe you have a banker friend who does?), this could be a niche that you could get into and be a “beginners savior”.

Popular forums in the forex niche:

BabyPips.com Forex Forum

http://forums.babypips.com/

Forex Factory

http://www.forexfactory.com/forum.php

DailyFX Forum

http://forexforums.dailyfx.com/forum/

Forum Marketing

Again, there is a good way, and a wrong way of doing it. Provide genuine value and follow the rules and your reputation and followers will just be a ‘by-product’.

Being a power member (a reputable member) is what will bring you the followers, signups and sales in the long run and eventually increase the reach and impact of your business.

Being too spammy and promotional will do nothing but ruin your reputation and get you banned.

Bonus Tip:

I would suggest creating a landing page targeting these specific forum members to increase conversions when they do visit your site.

Consider building the landing page with a similar ‘feel’ as the forum – same color schemes, fonts, page width for example.

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June 20th, 2013 by admin

How to Write Effective Facebook Updates

Facebook, it’s where the individual wants to see and be seen. There’s no denying that Facebook is the largest and most popular social media platform on the internet. It’s everywhere; on your childrens’ desktop at home, on your coworkers computers in the office, on the stranger’s iPhone in the subway, on the lady’s laptop at Star Bucks, all over the globe and in places you didn’t even know had internet connections.

 

 

One of the most common activities on Facebook would have to be posts which users update from time to time, sometimes daily, sometimes every other day, others weekly, and for the Facebook addict you can expect a new wall post every hour. But not all posts are read by friends and family.

Some posts can easily get lost in the hundreds of updates that flood user’s newsfeeds, while others are simply just uninteresting for people to read. If you have something important to state and want to make sure that people see it, then you better learn how to create Facebook posts with depth and eye catching factors that literally scream “Hey! Look at me!”

 

Driving Traffic with Facebook Posts

dricing traffic through facebookThere are many reasons why Facebook users update their posts and sometimes those reasons are connected with other online ventures such as websites, blogs and videos. If you have a website that sells services, a blog that promotes products or YouTube videos that you’d like to increase views on then Facebook is just one of the ways you can drive traffic to your site. That traffic may eventually turn into a sale, a lead, or a view and all you had to do was update your Facebook status.

Many online business owners use Facebook posts as a powerful tool for marketing their many services and products. The likelihood of someone clicking your post link is usually higher than them clicking a sidebar advertisement with the subject matter. Not only is it an effective way to get traffic to your sites, but it’s also completely free!

 

Promotion with Facebook Posts promoting on facebook

When it comes to drawing attention to an up and coming event, celebration or party, there’s nothing like a good ole’ Facebook post to alert all of your online friends and family. It’s a great way to get the word out and encourage attendance to your event. This can include personal celebrations like birthdays, anniversaries or holiday parties as well as organizational gatherings like seminars, book signing, Tupperware parties, and the like.

These days, traditional mailed-out invitations are becoming more elusive and many people are turning to the internet and social media platforms like Facebook to promote their events. Facebook even lets you create your event on your account with all the details, invite the people you want to come via your friends list, and track potential attendance through your friend’s responses. As the date of the event draws near, you can send a quick and friendly reminder to everyone with a Facebook post. This way sure does beat mailing out dozens of invitations and making phone calls to confirm attendance.  

 

Tips on Writing Effective Facebook Posts

writing a facebook postAs you can see, updating your status and making posts on your Facebook account can be used for more than just pure entertainment and venting purposes. And to make certain that your post doesn’t get overlooked and remains visible in people’s newsfeeds, there are strategies you can apply to your Facebook post to make them stand out, get likes, and engage comments. Follow these simple tips on how to write effective Facebook updates and posts.

  • Post during a certain time of the day. This may or may not work for you depending on whether your target audience is in the same time zone as you are. Nonetheless, statistics have shown that posts made between 8pm and 7am receives a higher percentage of user interaction (are you sure? 8pm to 7am).
  • Keep posts short and straight to the point. It’s recommended that posts with 80 characters or less are more apt to being read by friends than posts that are structured in paragraphs and appear to be a mini novel. Not everyone has the time or the patience to read your “life story”, even if it is promoting a brand new car give-away.
  • Asking questions in your post will often prompt responses from other users. Questions with a multiple choice usually attract higher response rates, e.g. “Which place serves the better burgers, In-n-Out or Burger King?”
  • If you’re promoting another website, always add a link for the convenience of the users. Unfortunately laziness can be a factor and if you provide a link for people to easily click versus the URL, you’re sure to get more visitors.
  • Include a relevant and eye-catching image along with your Facebook post. Sometimes words aren’t enough and people need a visual to further convince them to take action.
  • To reach even a larger audience, tag friends in your posts so that they and their friends will be able to see it. But make it as relevant as possible; otherwise it’d be odd to mention your friends in a post about baby clothes when all of them are single and childless.

Follow these tips and you’re sure to engage many of your friends online. Whether you’re trying to promote a site, drive traffic with a link, or just get some attention, writing an effective Facebook post will help you achieve that goal.

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November 8th, 2012 by admin

Why Should I Tweet About You?

Twitter TweetIf you create a piece of content that goes viral, it can bring a lot of traffic to your website. A lot of people realize this, so they use social media and they try to get their articles, blog posts, videos etc. to spread across the Internet. One way that people try to get their message out there is by using twitter and some people will even ask random twitter users to re-tweet their messages in an effort to make them go viral. I get a lot of requests from random people to re-tweet their messages but I hardly ever do and I'll tell you why. In fact, I'll give you 10 reasons why I don't re-tweet you or your content.

 

1. I Don't Even Know You

I prefer to send out quality information to my twitter followers so it's rare for me to re-tweet a message from someone I don't even know. I have to know and/or trust the source of a message before I will pass that message along to my twitter followers.

 

2. I Don't like Your Blog

If you are trying to get someone to re-tweet your messages in an effort to get traffic to your blog, make sure you have a decent blog. Some blogs are just plain ugly, others are difficult to navigate, some even have buttons that don't work or links that go to 404 error messages. If you can't maintain a decent blog or website I am not going to help you promote it. Make sure your blog is user friendly, easy to navigate, and has great content, and maybe I'll re-tweet your messages.

 

3. Your Blog Has Terrible Content

Your blog may have a nice design and it may be easy to navigate, but if it is full of useless information, or articles that sound like they have been written by someone who doesn't have a firm grasp of the English language, I won't be re-tweeting your message. Even if the content on your website is well written, I would like to see content that actually helps people. If every page of your website or blog is trying to sell a product and there is very little helpful information, I don't have any interest in helping you promote your site.

 

4. You're still using the Default Avatar

If you are still using the default avatar on your twitter account, it tells me that the only reason you have a twitter account is to try to get people to re-tweet your messages to make your message go viral. Take a few minutes to upload a picture of some kind, let me know you take your twitter account seriously.

 

5. You're Boring

If your bio is boring, your content is boring, and your tweets are boring, why would I want to share your messages with my twitter followers?

 

6. You Don't Offer Any Variety

If you tweet the exact same stuff every day, I have no interest in passing along your message. Tweeting the same content, piece of advice, quote etc. doesn't offer anything to my twitter followers, so I won't be re-tweeting your messages to them. Tweet something useful and I may change my mind.

 

7. You Are One of My Competitors

If you and I are promoting products or services in the same niche, I don't want to be sending my followers to your website. I would just as soon keep all of my followers on my own web properties rather than sending them over to yours.

 

8. I Only Hear from You When You Want Something from Me

If the only time I ever get a message from you is when you want me to re-tweet something for you, guess what, it's not going to happen.

 

9. You Make Your Tweet Difficult to Share

If your tweet has too many characters, if your title is boring, if you stuff too many hash tags in etc., I'm not going to re-tweet your message.

 

10. You Have Poor Manners

Some people send out a tweet and expect other people to re-tweet it. They might even get upset if other people don't re-tweet their messages. If you expect me to re-tweet your messages just because you take a few seconds to send me a tweet, don't be surprised when it doesn't happen.

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October 22nd, 2012 by admin

Are You Speaking The Same Language Your Audience Is?

Social Media IntegrationThe concept of providing a unified message is fairly simple, yet it seems that many companies are still failing to grasp the idea.  Integrating social media across marketing and communication plans so that everyone is on the same page just makes sense, so it’s a wonder why more companies don’t do it.  For example, your PR department doesn’t speak one way to customers and your marketing department another, do they?  No, they send out the same type of message that speaks to what your company stands for.

So, the question remains: why would you look at social marketing any differently?  For that, I don’t have an answer because I don’t understand the logic behind dual-identities, but I do have some very good reasons why you shouldn’t look at the Internet as a separate entity that is completely different and unique from the rest of your company and/or message.

 

Integration is the Key to Solidarity Integrating Social Media

In a nutshell, your target audience needs to be getting a universal message from your company that is saying the same thing across the boards.  Whatever it is that your company stands for or why you’re better than the competition or why they need your product or service; it doesn’t matter what the message is, just that everyone is on the same page.  Whether the client is browsing your webpage, interacting on Facebook, looking at print media, talking on the phone with one of your representatives or sitting directly across from you in your office: the message needs to be constant.

 

The only way that a company can do this is by integrating their marketing message to present a united front.  But what does this mean, exactly?

 

PR, Communications and Marketing: Working Together?

Working TogetherPrecisely the question you should be asking.  The easiest way to go about this is by thinking about the way that customers search for your particular services or products online and why we all build our websites around these searches.  You see, the Internet is a unique marketing tool that taps directly into a target audience or specific niche automatically, as long as you know how to use it.  This happens because it lets the customer find you (which is why social media and online marketing are so cost effective, coincidentally).

 

By optimizing our websites to allow our target audiences to find us, we’re basically acknowledging that there is a specific language out there that our customers and clients are speaking and seeking; why we don’t speak back to them in that same language is beyond me.

 

For example, let’s say that your company provides great hotel deals for last minute travelers.  Now, people searching for cheaper prices for hotels aren’t going to Google, “great hotel deals for last minute travelers.”  No!  More than likely, they’ll use search terms such as:

  • Cheap hotels Las Vegas
  • Budget hotels
  • Hotel deals New York City

 

Or, they’ll type something similar.  So, looking at that example, it’s baffling why some travel companies still use media messages such as: “When people cancel their hotel rooms at the last minute, you can book those vacancies for less money.”

 

What they should be doing is speaking to the language (and in the language) of the potential client with marketing messages such as:

  • Get cheap hotel rooms in Las Vegas quick by liking our page.
  • Our email newsletter brings you weekly updates on budget hotels all across the country.
  • We have the best hotel deals in New York City right on our website.

 

You can see how potential clients searching the keywords above would relate to the corresponding taglines below and CTAs would turn more conversions.  This correlates directly to real life marketing as well.

 

Getting On The Same Page

So, how can you go about doing this?  It’s rather simple, really.  You only need to know the keywords and phrases that your target audience is using to find you on social media and then integrate them into your marketing message.  This helps bridge the gap between what people want and what you’ve got to offer them: your product or service.  This is an invaluable research tool that costs nothing to use and works every time.

 

To find out which keyword or phrase your audience is using to find your site, simply talk to your web guys, they’ll be able to give you a Google Analytics report that will detail every term anyone has ever searched to find you.  Then, put them to good use!

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October 12th, 2012 by admin

Brand Monitoring Tips For Social Media That Will Make Your Operation Cost-Effective

Now that companies are beginning to settle into the fact that social media is here to stay, some are starting to move past the introductory phase and really get into the meat of the marketing.  There are many detailed strategies which you can implement on social media once you understand how, and now that we’ve reached this stage, it’s smartfor you to take a look at how we can simplify this process.

 

Social Media Marketing Strategy

 

In order to do this, we must first look at just what it takes to measure our successes in social media so that we may readjust and implement new strategies that aren’t doing so well on the fly.  And it just so happens that this is the part that so many companies struggle with: collecting the data that’s out there for a proper analysis.  To get started with this, the primary component of a marketing analysis on social media is comprised of comprehending the relationships between your brand and your target audience and guiding this relationship’s growth.

 

The reason so many struggle here is because they don’t know that there are social media toolswhich are built primarily for these types of analytics, so even if you have the desire and the time, youmay not know where to begin.  Here are some tips that break it down into easy-to-follow steps so that you can start to get a grasp of your brand’s social relationship to its customers.

 

1—Monitor Social Media Data

Monitor Social Media DataUsing monitoring data statistics from social media allows you to comprehend all the talk that is going on about your brand on channels which you don’t control.  For example, talk happens on social media every day, it’d be useless to monitor it all.  But with monitoring data tools for social media, you’re able to keep an ear to the ground about the conversations people are having online which are related to your brand. 

 

Then, you can take this data to analyze both the engagement type and individual type who are talking about you, further sharpening your target audience.  By understanding the demographics better, you can hone in on them, making your marketing more cost efficient and effective.

 

2—Facebook API Facebook API

Facebook Insights brings you some great information that is very useful, but it’s not enough when it comes to understanding how your brand relates with people.  For that, you have to go to the individual analysis provided by Graph API which allows you to access and store all the information about your brand’s current demographics.  From here, you can build a database that monitors your audience’s reactions and engagements, charting them alongside campaigns to see which are more or less successful than others.   Plus, you will gain a firmer grasp of what Facebook relationships your brand has built on an individual level, rather than just the aggregate metrics on Insights.

 

3—Twitter API

Twitter APIIn the same vein, Twitter API allows you to build and store a database that allows you to instantly refer back to when you first start monitoring it.  The metrics you store will allow you to access them and compare your current engagements with previous ones and measure their successes and failures against each other.  Here, you’ll get valuable insights into what works and what doesn’t for your particular audience on Twitter; for each company it’s a little different.

 

Measuring re-tweets, follows and how many re-tweets are from followers and non-followers, you can see how to draw new leads in, who your current leads are and what are the best marketing strategies for the two groups, both separately and together.  Once again, this increases your knowledge about your target audience, allowing you to further hone in on them and become increasingly cost-effective.

 

4—Putting It All Together Putting It All Together

Finally, making a meta-study of these three sources will allow you to compare and adjust your current campaigns against previous ones, streamlining costs and optimizing efficacy.  When you can do this, you’ve finally started to take the social media bull by its horns.  Using this valuable set of data, you can begin to profile the types of individuals you need to cater to, finding an all-inclusive view of just what you’re dealing with when it comes to your target audience.

 

From there, the next steps are to prioritize, cultivate and build relationships with each category of individuals, eventually integrating them into your CRM and email systems to get the whole picture.  Integration may not be the easiest thing to pull off, but when you do, the social media engine purrs like a kitten.

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October 8th, 2012 by admin

Social Engagement Isn’t Everything: 5 Other Things to Focus On

When you talk to people about their Facebook pages, you’ll often hear people all talking about the same thing: Likes, likes and more likes. Yes, having likes is important. Yes, getting a high level of page engagement is important. But it’s far from the end all be all of Facebook. There are many factors that are more important than list engagement. Here are five of them.

 

Facebook Engagement Tips

 

#1 – Segmenting Your List

Segmenting Your ListsIf you’re saying the same thing to everyone, chances are your message isn’t going to hit home with a lot of your audience. Instead, learn to segment your lists.

First, you can segment by language and geography. If you’re targeting different parts of the world or have followers across different language groups, make sure you make full use of this feature.

You can also segment your friends into different lists and share specific content with specific people.

 

#2 – Being on the Right Social Network(s) Online Social Networking

People often default to one of the big two social networks: Facebook or Twitter. But these two networks aren’t necessarily the right networks to be on.

If you’re targeting artists, a much better social network to be on might be DeviantArt. If you’re targeting CEOs and high level executives, a much better network to be on might be LinkedIn. So on and so forth.

Make sure you pick the social network that your users are actually on. Often time’s small industries and niches will have their own smaller social networks. Make sure you get on those social networks, not just the big ones.

 

#3 – Keep an Eye on Your Virality

Viral MarketingYour virality stats tell you what percentage of your guests like your content enough to take an action that causes your story to be reposted on their wall. This includes liking your post, commenting on your post or sharing your post.

Whenever someone does one of those three actions, your story is replicated on their wall. Your virality stats show you how often that happens. The higher your virality, the more people are passing around your content.

Look for patterns in virality. Do certain days of the week tend to work better? Do certain kinds of topics? Do certain kinds of media – pictures, videos, etc – Tend to work better?

Get in the habit of looking at your stats and adjusting your posting habits to what your customers want.

 

#4 – Is Your Content Emotionally Share-Worthy? Create share worthy content

Most companies are pretty good at coming up with content that’s share worthy from an informational perspective. How to content, tips, instructional videos, walkthroughs, discounts and so on are pretty common on the social sphere.

What isn’t common and what could really set you apart is content that’s share worthy from an emotional perspective.

Does your content get people to laugh? Or get riled up? Or make people feel special? Does it surprise them? Does it make them feel like you care about them?

Good content isn’t just about sharing good information. It’s also about hitting emotional triggers and making your content emotionally share worthy.

 

#5 – A Good Administration System

Administration SystemFinally, you need a good system for administering your Facebook page. This involves a few different things.

First, automation. Do you have the right tools to make administering your page as easy as possible? Use tools that allow you to schedule posts so you can do your posts in batches.

Next, you need to have clear assignment of administrative duties. Who’s in charge of updating the page? Who’s in charge of responding to customer comments?

Ideally, you should have just one or two people managing a page. You don’t want conflicting voices or conflicting opinions on your page. Other people who want something posted should contact the primary administrator(s) to have things posted, rather than have admin access to do it themselves.

Finally, you should have a system for monitoring your social media. You should have alerts setup for common brand keywords. If a PR emergency ever arises, or if a customer starts to complain about your brand, you should know about it immediately and be able to respond quickly.

These five things are all more important than the amount of likes or the level of engagement you get on your page. Engagement isn’t everything – The way you manage your page can make a big, big difference.

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September 17th, 2012 by admin

If Your Social Media Marketing Isn’t Working, Here’s Why

 

For many companies that “try out social media,” it ends up being a bust. In other words, it’s common for companies to invest a lot of man hours only to see little return for their time and money. On the other hand, businesses that know how to work their social media platforms often see extremely high returns, sometimes propelling their businesses to completely different levels. Why is that?

Here are some of the main reasons why social media doesn’t work for a lot of companies and how you can avoid these pitfalls.

 

Poor Link Between Site & Social

Do your visitors know you have a social media presence? Just placing a “tweet” button at the bottom of your articles isn’t enough.

Your #1 promotion avenue for your social media is your own website. Many businesses make the mistake of not properly advertising their social media platforms on their main site.

Place a Facebook widget that shows up many followers you have on your main site. Or come up with some sort of promotion that ties in to getting “Liked.” Find ways to directly advertise your social media to your visitors, rather than just promote it as a second thought.

 

Not Cultivating Raving Fans 

The most powerful thing you could have going for your social media marketing is a bunch of raving fans who regularly share your materials and get their friends to like and share your materials as well.

Are you paying attention to your most loyal fans? When they @reply or @mention you, do you respond to them directly? Do you contact them first before you launch products? Do you have personal relationships with them?

Your big fans are what will make or break your social media efforts. With them, you’ll be able to launch just about any kind of initiative and succeed. Without them, you’ll be pushing a ball uphill.

 

Not Getting Adequate Web Traffic

Starting up a Facebook fan page won’t do you any good if you can’t drive web traffic to that page. If you’re not getting enough traffic, that’s a big area of your business you need to focus on before you can expect real results from social media marketing.

Do some Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to try and get your website to the top of the search engines. Do joint projects with other businesses that have email lists to expose their audience to you materials. Spend some money on Pay Per Click traffic to give your brand a boost.

If you’re not building an email list yet, start building an email list. An email list allows you to get people who come to your website to come back time and again. It can also be a big source of traffic for your social media outlets.

Get more traffic first, then direct that traffic towards your social media.

 

Poor Monetization Strategy

So, you have 100,000 followers. But what does that actually mean in terms of bottom line?

One of the biggest mistakes and pitfalls social media marketers make is not having a clear monetization strategy. If you can’t monetize your fans and followers, then naturally you’re not going to so a return on investment.

Do you have clear call to actions in your posts and your tweets? A call to action is when you tell someone what to do – “Click this link,” “Watch this video,” “Buy this product” and so on.

One of the most effective ways to promote through social media is to use lead generation landing pages. Instead of trying to get people to buy a product right then and there, ask for people who’re interested. Then call them, mail them or email them.

Come up with some sort of sales funnel that’s geared specifically towards social media. This will help you turn your traction into real money.

These are the most common pitfalls companies make in social media. If you’re making any of these mistakes, it’s only natural that you won’t see the kind of return you’d hope for in a business initiative. Begin by funneling enough people into your funnel, then make sure you have a solid system for collecting leads and monetizing them. Once you do that, your ROI will quickly skyrocket.

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July 5th, 2012 by admin

Why Google+ Matters and Where it Fits in Your Social Strategy

 

Google+ has over 90 million users. While some marketers consider Google+ small or inconsequential, marketers at the top of their game know that’s not the case. Google+ is one of the largest social networks on the planet. And with Google’s new “Search Plus” features, Google+ has truly become a force to reckon with.

Google+’s “Search Plus” feature essentially uses Google+’s data to help change how your search engine results are weighed. For example, if you’re in someone’s circle and you publish a piece of content, they’re more likely to see that piece of content ranked. If several of someone’s friends like a piece of content, that piece of content is more likely to rank higher.

What’s astounding about “Search Plus” is just how much weight is being placed on these ranking factors. A page that would otherwise never show up on the front page can beat out much more credible sources. As an SEO tool, Google+ now holds unprecedented power.

Now that Google+ is a significant player, how can you harmonize your Google+ efforts with your SEO, your Facebook and your Twitter strategies?

 

Start by Focusing on SEO Fundamentals

The best Google+ optimization in the world won’t make a difference if your website isn’t properly optimized. Google+ can get you a long way, but you still need to handle at least the basics first.

Start by carefully choosing what you’re targeting with your keywords. Use tools like the Google Keyword Tool to figure out the best keywords to target.

Optimize your title tags. This is by far the most important tag on your site. It tells Google what keywords you’re trying to rank for. It’s also your “headline” in the search engine listings.

Write a compelling meta description tag. This tag is what tells the search engines what to put below your title tag. It won’t help your rankings, but it’ll help you get clicks.

Tag all your alt tags in your images. This helps your images rank in Google Images, which in turn helps your rankings in organic Google. It also helps your Google SEO independently.

Develop a strong internal linking structure. Put copious links from your own content to other pages on your site.

Finally, make sure you link to your social media pages from your home page. This helps tell Google that these social media pages are legitimate. That they’re your official page.

 

Develop a Comprehensive Social Media Strategy

Assess both your own social media strategy and your competitors’. Look at:

  • Where are your social media pages ranking right now?
  • Where are your competitors’ social media pages ranking right now?
  • How many fans do they have?
  • How many Twitter followers do they have?
  • How many people do they have in their Google+ circles?
  • How many comments, likes and shares are they getting? What percentage of their followers actively engage with their posts?

This will help give you a sense for where your competitors stand in the social sphere right now. In addition to looking at your competitors, you should also spend a bit of time looking at your own in depth stats.

This will help pinpoint what’s working and what’s not working in your own social media strategy. Take a look at:

  • What kind of content gets the highest virality rating in your posts?
  • What kind of tweets get retweeted?
  • Who’s in your audience? Is it different than the audience of your primary site? Do they vary from Facebook to Twitter to Google+?

Once you have all this information at your fingertips, it’s time to reformulate your strategy. Figure out a purpose for each and every social media platform you’re engaged in.

For example, Facebook may be used for virality and for having two-way conversations with your fans. You can also use Facebook ads’ connection targeting to remind your Facebook fans of your offers.

Twitter on the other hand may be used to answer questions and to build a connection with your audience with quick and fun tips.

Google+ on the other hand should be used with an eye towards SEO. Google+ doesn’t have the same kind of audience that Twitter and Facebook have, but has enormous power in terms of ranking. Take advantage of this power.

 

Making the Most of All Networks

Learning to merge your Google+ strategy with your Facebook and Twitter strategy is essential for your long term success in the social sphere.

In order to do this, you need to know how each network is performing for you. You also need to know the strengths and weaknesses that each network offers you. Then you can effectively form your own unique and tailored social media strategy.

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May 11th, 2012 by admin

4 Powerful Tips for Using Social Listening for SEO

Social Listening For SEOSocial listening is the art and practice of regularly paying attention to social media. Using social listening, you can learn a lot about your audience, influence discussions and improve your search engine rankings.

 

Here are four ways you can use social listening to enhance SEO.

 

#1 – Learn the Slang

On websites, people tend to write in a very proper and formal tone while on Facebook, Twitter and other social media websites however, people tend to just write the first thing that comes to their heads. Learning the Slang

One great thing about the spontaneous nature of their messages is that people tend to use casual language rather than carefully considered language. That can really help you pick up slang that you can use in your own messages and your own copy. You can also incorporate this slang to help you pick up longtail search traffic.

For example, in the marketing industry, marketers call email submits “subs.” On websites, most authors will just call them “email submits.” However, on Twitter and Facebook you’ll find people using “subs” more than “email submits,” as it’s shorter and more catchy.

 

#2 – Observe and Predict Trends

Predecting TrendsTwitter and Facebook are great ways to predict a trend. If you notice that all of a sudden people are talking about one subject, you can jump on that bandwagon early.

It takes time for webmasters, websites and even bloggers to catch up. However, social media websites like Twitter and Facebook are more or less instantaneous.

This moment a coherent thought is formed within a community, it’ll be visible on Twitter and Facebook. People will make offhand comments, people will share resources and the idea will take off like wildfire.

Pretty soon, hundreds of web pages will pop up talking about whatever topic is hot right now. However, if you can get in on the game early by noticing it first through social media, you’ll have a big leg up. Get there early and you can become a major player in the conversation.

 

#3 – Use it to Inform Keyword Research Keyword Research

Social media can inform your keyword research. A lot of people tend to treat social and search as two completely different marketing mediums. In reality, they have a lot of overlap.

Use social media to inform your search marketing keywords. Look on Twitter for new trends, new products, new ideas, new competitors and check out how the search volume is going.

Google Trends can give you a good idea of whether a search term is going up or down. The Google Keyword Tool can give you a good idea of how much traffic the term gets today, though it isn’t useful for predicting future traffic.

If you only use traditional tools to do keyword research, you’ll always be playing catch-up. You’ll only be optimizing for terms that others have already beat you to. When you use social media as well however, you can get ahead of the curve and be one of the early players.

 

#4 – Optimize for Blended Search

There’s a lot of traffic to be had in blended search. Blended search refers to Google’s practice of placing videos, images and local results within the search results itself.

Trying to rank on Google for a main keyword term can be very tough. It could take months, even years of work.

However, if nobody is targeting the blended search results, you can often skip all that work and jump all the way to the top.

Pay as much attention to optimizing your videos, your local results and your images as you do to your website. Make sure you have the right keywords, make sure you have a great title, a great description and get backlinks to your videos and other media.

These are four ways social listening can help improve your SEO.

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April 12th, 2012 by admin