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Sending the Right Social Signals on Your Website

Social Media SignalsAs the list of social media sites continues to grow each day, the suddenly emerging picture of your entire online presence as one giant portfolio that is all interconnected is becoming quite clear.  Unfortunately, many companies haven’t quite grasped this yet and are still viewing each outlet as a separate entity which exists entirely on its own.  But this is the Internet, a place for connecting, as social media marketing gurus keep reminding us, so it only makes sense that you’ll want your online outlets to all be connected.

 

And yet it baffles the mind how many companies neglect something this simple, especially when it’s such a quick and easy fix.  With most companies spending large sums on website design, it shows they understand that every facet of a website is so important because it represents the face of your company, from footer to header; every individual pixel counts.   Still, they fail to grasp that by simply placing social media buttons on your site, you can show potential clients that you’re far more than just a website; you’re a living, breathing entity that has connections all over the Internet and that you are socially advanced over your competition.

 

Getting Social With It

 

With many companies having Facebook, Google+, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn Groups, it’s a wonder why they don’t provide the links and make it simple for their leads to find them.  Creating these links not only increases the presence in the mind of your potential clients, but also actually boosts your online presence by creating those ever-important backlinks.

 

And because a lot of companies have different teams from the marketing department that head up each of these social outlets (which shouldn’t be the case as integration is key all around), chances are each of these separate outlets have different types of information on them.  Most likely you’ll have intriguing thoughts on Facebook posts which inspire interaction to get a better EdgeRanking and your Twitter feed will be abuzz with news…but why would you segregate all that great lead-building information from your customers, making it hard to find?

 

This is why you need to place social media buttons directly onto your website.  These social signals will give you instant credibility with consumers, showing them a multi-faceted side to your company and helping you to stand out in a sea of mediocrity.  It will also let users know that people like your product and that they are following and talking about your brand or message which is always a consumer confidence builder.

 

Ways to Implement Social Signals

 

There are a few ways you can go about this, so see which one fits your company’s website style as well as your client’s preferences the best.  Remember that you want to direct their attention to the social sites, but not distract from the overall message on your website; the client is already there, you don’t want to lead them away from the purchase, just to reinforce the conversion.

  • The Navigation Section:  Some companies like to place their social media buttons right in the
  • main navigation box so that customers see it right away.
  • A Specific Section:  Another way to go about this is to create a specific box, section or area that is at the header or footer of every page of the website.
  • The Sharing Tool:  You can also add a “Sharing Tool” box that lets users easily share your content on their own social outlets.  This can be stable or move with the scroll, though some users find that distracting.
  • Social Commenting Plug-In:  Many sites have a plug-in where users can comment directly on your website via their Facebook and Twitter accounts.  This is great for instant feedback and sharing as well as engaging with your audience.
  • Twitter Stream:  If your site has a fan base that uses Twitter, keeping a stream directly on your site is a great way for people to stay connected and attract visitors to join the conversation, knowing that their posts will load right onto your site.

 

Taking Precautions

 

Still, heed the above warning with any of these ideas for social media buttons on your website.  You want them to enrich the users’ visiting experience, not get in the way of your conversions or message.  They should be subtle, yet visible enhancers that increase your content’s chances of going viral.

 

Finally, don’t link to the social pages if you aren’t updating them; bad social buttons do more harm than no social buttons at all.

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October 3rd, 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

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