Wednesday Jul 18,2012 By ·
If you regularly maintain a few social media profiles, you might feel like you’re a slave to them. If you get a comment or someone sends a Tweet to you, or posts on your Facebook wall, you might think you have to reply right away. Are you constantly checking your social media feeds?
Well, stop. Don’t be a slave to your social media.
You need to develop a practical strategy that enables you to spend more time with your business and not spend all yoru time replying to comments on Facebook.
It’s not that social media isn’t important; it is very important. But you should be strategic in how you employ it. There’s no need or reason to have your iPhone out 24/7 to respond to people unless there is a crisis.
One great strategy is to use a social media tool that enables you to post to multiple platforms. A lot of people really like using HootSuite as it enables you to use Facebook and Twitter, and schedule posts. So you can draft posts when you have time and schedule them to go out when they have the most impact.
Another strategy is simply to just designate a certain block of time for responding to comments. The way that I like to do this is to post a few things in the morning and then do other tasks. Later that afternoon, I check for any replies, respond, and maybe share a few more things on social media. Then, I attend to other tasks. Lastly, before I “close out” for the day, I make one last check of my social media sites.
That’s three times a day that I schedule to check social media sites and respond. That way, you’re not checking every ten minutes. There’s just no need to constantly refresh your Facebook feed to see what people have written. It can be a waste of time and can stress you out.
Monday Jul 16,2012 By ·
If you are looking for things to share on your social media pages and on your blog, consider your business. Depending on what your business is, it may offer a lot of things to the public that they may not know of, besides what your storefront may suggest.
For example, if your business is selling handmade crafts, it’s often a great idea to show some of the behind the scenes work that goes into making what it is that you sell. You can post photos of conceptual drawings or of people working, and that can give insight into what your business is and does. It can also help your customers feel closer to the product. It helps promote an understanding of the work that you do.
But it doesn’t specifically need to be something that you make that can help customers or your potential audience feel closer to your business. Sometimes it’s a good idea to share things on your social media pages that isn’t directly related to what you are trying to sell. If you have a particular brand or vibe for your business, it’s okay to highlight things within that vein that aren’t specifically about the sell.
What you want to do is show your customers that you understand the things that they are interested in. It’s important to connect with them. Another great way to do this is by also highlighting customer feedback on your Facebook or other social media pages. It’s important to remember you shouldn’t just cherry-pick positive feedback. That makes it sound unnatural. But if you can respond to negative feedback or criticism with grace and a plan for the future, you can turn negative commentary into a positive thing on your social media pages.
Lastly, do not forget to invite people to public events with your business and post photos of the events. It’s a great idea to use a Twitter hashtag for the event so posts during the event can be followed by all attendees and people who stayed at home.
Wednesday Jul 11,2012 By ·
Twitter can be a great resource for a social media strategy and can really help boost your search engine ranking. Twitter can drive people to your side, and really amplify the reach of your content. But that all depends on whether or not you are properly using Twitter.
The important thing about Twitter is it should never be used as a one-sided conversation. If you’re simply aggregating your blog posts on Twitter, and treating it like an RSS feed, your Twitter feed is going to be static, boring and useless.
People like to tweet at companies and organizations. It helps them feel like a part of the conversation. One of the big reasons Twitter is so popular is it makes people accessible. That doesn’t mean you have to be on Twitter 24/7 answering questions. If you did that, you’d literally spend all your time on Twitter and it wouldn’t necessarily accomplish much for you. But you can dedicate a certain amount of time to interacting with your followers on Twitter. Answer questions, and ask them.
Go ahead and retweet positive comments or feedback. But don’t ignore negative feedback. By responding accurately and addressing negative feedback on Twitter, you can actually do a lot of good. People remember when a company or an organization responsibly addresses their concerns and Twitter is a great way to manage those kinds of conversations. People feel like they are able to reach you if you have a Twitter handle.
It’s also a good idea to utilize things like hashtags. You can have hashtags for special events or to track particular conversations. If you want to offer a special discount or something to your Twitter followers, you can spread the information through a Twitter hashtag and by asking your followers to retweet you.
Twitter can be a great tool for marketing your business, as long as you use Twitter correctly.
Monday Jul 9,2012 By ·
If you are serious about search engine optimization, one thing that cannot be emphasized enough is “quality content.” Quality content, and new content, is what helps your site rise in search rankings, as well as gain word-of-mouth and social media links.
But coming up with quality content isn’t always easy, especially when you are developing new quality content multiple times a week.
1) Ask your audience. Use your social media channels to crowd-source content ideas and see what things your audience wants you to talk about.
2) Consider a list. Lists are often a great way to present and organize information, making it easier for people to process.
3) Use real-world examples. Look at what is going on in your life and consider how it is applicable to the topic of your blog or website. If you can relate to it, chances are so can your audience.
4) Be topical. If something is going on in news or current events, you can cover it. This can be anything from the launch of a new tech product to events like the Oscars or the Super Bowl, that have huge audiences. Many people do spoof events for things like March Madness and do brackets for anything from “worst celebrity outfits” to “cake versus pie.”
5) Be creative! Don’t be afraid to use some of your more off-the-wall ideas.
6) It doesn’t always have to be written post. Branch out and try other forms of media. If you want to do a special video blog and use that as the basis for a post, go for it. It is unique and interesting to do things you don’t normally do, and you may get a positive reaction.
7) It’s okay to do a “highlights” post. One way to get some extra mileage out of your content at the end of the week is to create a highlights or recap post, listing some of the most popular or most commented on posts during the week.
Friday Jul 6,2012 By ·
If you are planning on developing a social media strategy for your business, there are a few things you should keep in mind. It is entirely possible to develop a social media strategy and devote time to social media, and not actually accomplish anything. You need to have a strategy for your social media plan that will help it develop your business, otherwise you will just be wasting time.
One handy thing to do is to set goals for your social media strategy. Many people set goals when they start using social media to build their business. The important thing to consider, however, is to set goals you can actually control. Despite what people may say, it simply isn’t possible to guarantee that people will follow you, or like your page, or retweet you. If you set goals that call for a certain number of followers, or retweets, or likes, you are setting yourself up for failure.
What you should do is set goals for things that you can control. While you might be unable to control how many people like your Fan Page on Facebook, you can control what pages you like and what comments you leave on other people’s pages. Instead of counting how many retweets you get, you should set a goal for how many people you retweet, and how many people you respond to in an attempt to engage in a conversation.
The other thing you should consider is focusing on social media sites you can succeed in. There are a million social media sites. Which ones do you feel comfortable on and will help your business? Focus on those.
That doesn’t mean neglect to learn about anything new. It means concentrate your time and energy to developing one or two great sites that you know you can engage on, and use spare time to learn about others.