Archive for social media

Why Social Media is Important for Customer Service

It’s unfortunate that many business owners are ignoring social media — especially Facebook and Twitter — and especially when it comes to customer service.

One of my clients is opening a “rage room” in Tempe this weekend. Someone wanted to book a party and had a question. The contact form on the website gave her an error message when she tried to send it. Where did she go? FACEBOOK.

She sent a message and I got the notification. I replied for her to call the owner with his number and reported the contact form error to the webmaster.

Depending on the type of business and your target market, your customer and potential customers will use social media to reach you when conventional methods (email, website, phone) fail.

The problem here is if you’re monitoring your social media, you’ll never know when you get a message from a potential client! Facebook also will give you a “badge” if 90% of your average response time is less than 15 minutes.

My client was messaged on Twitter by one of the anchors from the local TV station wanting info on the business and on Facebook from another.

Could you be missing out on some free publicity because you’re ignoring social media?

You can’t afford to!

Here are a few points to ponder:

  1. It’s your online image. What message does it send if you haven’t posted anything on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn for months, even years? Lazy? Clueless? Behind the times?
  2. It’s where your potential customers are hanging out. Check out this article on how to reach the different generations through social media.
  3. You may be missing big opportunities. You’re not increasing your reach or influence. You’re not driving new traffic to your website. Moreover, you’re losing valuable SEO (search engine optimization).

So what do you need to do for better customer service?

  1. Learn how each of the social networks work and figure out which ones your target market uses the most. Here are my free classes and the free Define Your Target Market Workbook.
  2. Set up your social media profiles properly. Take into consideration your branding.
  3. Check your analytics monthly. They’ll tell you if your website traffic is increasing, if people are converting (from a visitor to a lead or a customer/ downloading / buying), and which social networks are contributing to the conversions. Here’s my free analytics class.

No more excuses! Stop letting these customer service moments slip by!

  1. Download and set up the mobile apps for the social networks that your clientele frequents the most.
  2. Turn on notifications. Now, make sure that you do a “do not disturb” parameters or set the notifications to badges and not sounds so you don’t get woken up in the middle of the night.
  3. Respond in a timely manner. Have the links to Frequently Asked Questions handy so you can just copy and paste.

So, the phone might not be ringing as much lately, it’s because your customers are trying to reach you via social media. Get with the program and stop living in 20th century!

Start with the Free Social Media Marketing Master Class!

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What is a Social Media Emergency? (And What to Do About it!)

Nothing like waking up in the morning to a social media emergency!

What’s a social media emergency?

When you wake up to find that some evil person:

  • hacked into one of your accounts and posted something derogatory or offensive
  • hacked into a follower or an employee’s account and posted something bad using your company’s name

This happened to the Christian ministry I work with. We believe it was a disgruntled former resident who was released from the program for disobeying the rules. He’s the only “enemy” we know of that has the skill to be able to pull this off.

I’m not going to show the offensive post here but here’s what we think happened.

The enemy hacked into the Facebook account of one of our volunteers and altered her employment to reflect that she was employed by the ministry — which she isn’t. She happens to be a faithful volunteer who comes several times a month to cook for our male residents. She’s connected to our kitchen manager on Facebook. We believe that’s how the enemy found her.

The enemy then posted an offensive message using her account which triggered a slew of comments and bad reviews.

At first, the executive director and I had no idea that the person was one of our volunteers. We only knew that she was not an employee. We posted a statement which we later edited to say what we figured happened.

The offensive post was not on the her page by the time I started investigating. It obviously was up just long enough to raise the ire of some of our 880 fans.

What you can do to about the social media emergency:

  • First of all – KEEP CALM! The world (or your business) is not going to end because of this.
  • Post a statement declaring that it was a hack. Hacking happens so often that people will understand.
  • Immediately shut off the reviews. Our ministry doesn’t need them since we’re not a retail store. Now, that may not be an option for other types of businesses. If you can’t shut down the reviews, you’ll have to respond to each one in a positive manner.
  • Change your visitor posting settings. Click on Settings at the top right corner of your business page and go down to Visitor Posts and turn on moderation. This allows people to post on your page, but you must approve it before it becomes public. What is a Social Media Emergency? (And What to Do About it!)
  • Turn off the tagging ability. Make sure only trusted page managers can tag people in pictures and posts and that other people or pages can’t tag you in their posts.
  • Adjust personal privacy settings. Have anyone connected to the page and/or employees to set their personal Facebook settings to private so that strangers cannot see who their friends are.
  • Don’t accept a friend request from someone you don’t know. There are many scammers out there trying to prey on people. Take a look at which friends you have in common. Contact that person and ask about the one requesting to be your friend.
  • Don’t accept a friend request from someone who’s already your friend. The second account is a hack or fake account. Contact the friend and let them know.
  • Don’t buy Facebook likes. Those are fake accounts and will skew your analytics plus, it may open the door to bad people.
  • Post a series of positive blog articles and messages. Bury the bad with the good.
  • Don’t go on a rampage badmouthing whoever did it.
  • Report the hack to Facebook or whichever network it was.

Unfortunately, there are evil people out there that have nothing better to do than make other peoples’ lives miserable. Every business, even well-meaning charities and nonprofits have disgruntled employees and clients.

One of the things you need to do is be educated enough on how the social media networks work. Become familiar with the security and privacy settings.

This is your online reputation that can be damaged in a matter of minutes.

This Free Glossary of Online Terms will help.

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How Social Media Helped Save Lives During Hurricane Harvey

25 years ago this past week I was living through Hurricane Andrew in Miami. 13 years ago this Labor Day weekend I was enduring the 2nd of 2 hurricanes, Jeanne (Frances came 2 weeks earlier) in Palm Bay, FL.

After Andrew, though by the grace of God my home and belongings were spared, I spent 2 weeks with no electricity. I depended on the radio and the newspaper for news. After Frances and Jeanne, I was only out of power for 3 days each. Probably because I lived near the hospital. Nevertheless, I lost all my refrigerated food twice and the whole area was depressed. That’s why I moved to Phoenix, AZ.

Watching Hurricane Harvey hit Southeast Texas this week was heart-wrenching. After each of the hurricanes that I lived through (6 in total), there was a strong sense of community and people helping people — strangers in need. However, a form of communication that was not around 13 years ago is social media.

Those of you who think social media is silly, this will change your minds.

One of the news videos highlighted #HarveySOS on Twitter. Using this hashtag, people in need of rescue posted their addresses and needs. Rescuers could then go find them in boats, helicopters or trucks to get them to safety and shelter.

How Social Media Helped Save Lives During Hurricane HarveyWhen Harvey moved northeast toward Port Arthur, #PortArthur was trending on Twitter. Here’s what was there:Twitter screenshot of #PortArthur Hurricane HarveyTwitter Screenshot Port Arthur Rescue tweets Hurricane Harvey

Notice how many retweets under each tweet. That’s the icon with the 2 arrows. Thousands of people retweeted these cries for help to their followers. Dozens responded — that’s the first icon with the bubble. Hundreds “liked” or saved them.

Wow. Think about the impact social media has made.

Now, we can watch as companies, organizations and charities use social media to raise funds, get donated items and help rebuild Texas.

It’s true that…

News no longer breaks, it tweets.

I hope this has convinced you to take Twitter seriously. Thank God for Twitter and social media.

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Best Social Media News You Can Use – July Wrap-up

While here in Phoenix the kids are getting ready to go back to school, the heat is still in the 100s. I had all good intentions to provide these best picks of the social media news weekly, but thank God, business is booming. So, this will now be a end-of-month wrap-up.

One of challenges of social media marketing is that the networks are constantly changing. They either change the layout of the site or they add or remove features and services. For you, the business owner or social media manager, it’s tough to keep up with them. No worries. I’ll sort through all the social media marketing expert blogs and hand pick the ones that I feel are important and might affect your marketing.

Here’s July’s Best Social Media News You Can Use (in no particular order):

Social Network Updates:

Great Social Media Marketing Tips (I couldn’t have said it better myself!):

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Why You Need to Be On Pinterest for Exposure and SEO

There are a lot of stressed-out people on Pinterest. How do I know that? I wrote a blog post for one of my clients, Simply Smashing Rage Room (opening in Tempe, BTW) titled, How To Increase the Serotonin In Your Brain. It included an infographic (a graphic with data) which I pinned on Pinterest as soon as I published the article.

Why You Need to Be On Pinterest for Exposure and SEOAs of this time, and it was published on June 23, we’ve had close to 1200 views of that page! Wow! And look where the majority of the people came from! Mind boggling!

I’m not going to go into detail of how you can use Pinterest for your business – whether B2B or B2C. You can view my How-To class here.

What you need to understand is…

You Cannot Ignore Pinterest!

How Pinterest Works

See, when someone pins a picture or video from your website, it takes the link with it. Thus, helping with SEO (Search Engine Optimization) because Google likes relevant back links.

Furthermore, when someone sees the pin and saves it (repins) it to one of their boards, it creates yet another back link to your site.

When someone clicks twice on the pin, it takes them to your website!

The more people pin and repin your pictures and videos, the more “Google Juice” or “Link Love” you’ll get. Make Google happy and it’ll reward you with first page listings when people search for what you have to offer.

If you’re B2B, you might be thinking that it’s not for you. Not true! Go in and search for “technology” or “social media marketing” or “business tips” and you’ll see lots of pins and boards come up with infographics and videos.

People use Pinterest to bookmark and categorize anything that interests them. It’s like a huge bulletin board. We love visuals. The more eye-catching and easy-to-read, the better.

You might be afraid of Pinterest because it’s distracting. Yes, it can be. If I’m there working for a client and I’ve allocated 15 minutes, I set a timer.

Moreover, keep business and personal separate. Setup a business account or convert a personal one on Business.Pinterest.com. If I’m following you for business, I don’t want to see pet tips or hot hairstyles.

When social media marketing is done properly it can be very effective. However, you need to understand the nuances of each of the social networks. Each one is different. The only one that covers all generations is Facebook. The others have specific user demographics.

Free Download: Define Your Target Market WorkbookYou need to clearly define your target market(s) before you can effectively promote your business online. Click here to download the free workbook!

This also proves why analytics are so important. You must measure and go over your insights and statistics at least once a month. Here’s a free analytics class!

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How to Use Branding and Color for Your Online Image

Branding in today’s digital age is way more than just having a nice logo, a catchy tag line and a pretty website. Whether you’re just starting out or your business needs a new look, this is the place to start.

In this video, I show all aspects of online branding covering:

  • websites
  • social media graphics – updated!
  • psychology of color
  • reputation management
  • online image

 

 
Click here to download a PDF of the slides with notes.

Related Video: Website Planning 101 by SonFisher Web Studios

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Happy 6th Birthday, Google Plus! And They Said It Wouldn’t Last [Infographic]

When Google Plus (G+) first came out, many people thought that it was just another Facebook. Many people said that it wouldn’t last. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen articles saying, “Google Plus is dead.” And here we are celebrating Google Plus’ sixth birthday. Amazing.

This infographic, from FulleStop, highlights Google Plus’ milestones along with some current stats and important characteristics:

    • 440 million active monthly users (not too shabby!)
    • Over 2 billion profiles (imagine if all of these were active)
    • 8 new users join every second (constantly growing)
    • The average user spends 12 minutes a day on it (this is surprising)
    • 70 out of the top 100 brands are on it and they have more followers on G+ than on YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest combined! (even more surprising!)
    • It connects to YouTube. Setup your G+ page first then setup your YouTube Channel. (This is part of your online branding. Get it right.)
    • Everything posted public on G+ gets indexed in the search engine!

That last point is reason enough to be posting regularly on G+ — just for the SEO value alone.

Happy 6th Birthday, Google Plus InfographicSo are you convinced that you need to be on G+? Click here to watch my Google+ video class on YouTube. It’s free!

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What Social Amplification Looks Like When It Works Right

Posting on Facebook or any social media network is fruitless unless you have a following. You want social amplification. That’s when one of your followers shares your post with their friends. Your reach grows by how many followers they have. If they have 100 followers, your post has the chance of being seen by 100 people.

I recently started working with a nonprofit, House of Refuge SunnySlope (HRS), a faith-based, transitional housing program. They’ve been around for a almost 30 years and have over 800 Facebook likes. Until I started with them, no one was blogging. Yes, their website was being updated with pictures from events, but not blogs.

What Social Amplification Looks Like When It Works RightMy 3rd post for them was a video with the story of the gal who was the Women’s Program Director who was leaving. The “featured image” was a picture of her and her family.

What blew me away was with only 18 shares (that is people who shared the post with their friends), they got a reach of over 1700! That means that 1700 people had the potential to see the post. For a non-profit that is huge!

Non-profits have actually 5 target markets. Their main goals are to get donations, build awareness and recruit volunteers.

The more visibility they get, the better.

Also, telling stories is what attracts people to posts and blogs. Especially positive ones. That’s what I love about working with HRS — the stories of people who were as down and out as one can get and how God worked wonders in their lives. The eye-catching picture didn’t hurt either!

Everyone wants more visibility and exposure and that’s what social media and content marketing provide when done properly.

There is no reason why your business — for-profit or non-profit — new or existing — cannot get social amplification.

However, it takes time and effort.

So you need to either budget dollars to hire someone outsourced or in-house to do your social media or budget time to learn how to do properly and effectively and then actually implement your strategic and tactical plans.

It’s your choice.

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How to Measure Your Social Media Marketing with Analytics

Social media marketing analytics and insights are your friend! They play a crucial role in your marketing success. Basically, they tell you what’s working and not working. Each of the social media networks has their own analytics or insights. Moreover, they give you data — information about your followers or fans to help you market to them more effectively. Here are all the analytics classes.

Note: These are advanced classes! You should go through the individual network classes first!

First an overview of the information available to you and then below are some of the individual networks and where to find their analytics and insights. Some networks offer better analytics than others.

Analytics 104: An Overview


Class notes: https://azsocialmediawiz.com/wp-content/uploads/Analytics104.pdf 

Facebook Insights:

Facebook Insights tell you the demographics of your fans, where they’re located, what posts got the most engagement, even the best time to post.

Pinterest Analytics:

Pinterest Analytics tell you a lot about your followers and which of your pins got noticed and saved. It also gives you info on what else your followers like as well as data from anything pinned from your website.

Twitter Analytics:

Similar to Pinterest, Twitter tells you a lot about your followers: where their located, what else interests them and which of your tweets got the most engagement.

WordPress JetPack Site Stats:

WordPress JetPack site stats tell you how many people visited your website or blog, where they came from and which posts or pages were most popular.

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How to Save Time with Free Social Media Tools

Social Media Marketing is time-consuming. There’s some upfront “sweat equity” that you have to put in on research, setting up, creating content and building a following. Once the following is built, then you can manage your social media in 30 minutes a day! Yes, it can be done. Here are the free social media marketing tools that I use to both keep myself sane and save a ton of time!

You should have watched all the network videos first.

Time-Saving Social Media Marketing Tools:

Class notes: https://azsocialmediawiz.com/wp-content/uploads/BootCampSocialMediaTools.pdf

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