Archive for social networks

How and Where to Best Reach Different Generations on Social Media [Infographic]

I asked a new client, “Who’s you’re target market?” He replied, “Everyone!” Yikes! Unfortunately, not like back in the day of the Yellow Pages, you can’t place an ad or two in the local paper or the YP and expect to get results. Each social media network has its own audience — a distinct user base. Understanding the different generations and how they use social media, is crucial for effective marketing.

The particular client I mentioned wants to reach a broad audience of different age groups and occupations. Which is fine, however, you market to someone under 40 (Gen Z & Millennials) differently than you would to someone over 40 (Gen X & Baby Boomers) – and on different social networks.

In a nutshell, here’s how, when and where to reach each of the generations: Use Snapchat to reach the under 21 crowd.

Gen Z (<21):

SnapChat and Facebook – the prefer to see real people (authenticity) in marketing rather than celebrities. (Go figure.) Use short, positive content – mostly videos. Best time is early morning and late afternoon.

Use Instagram to reach MillennialsMillennials (22 – 40):

Facebook (their primary news source), Instagram (for the younger half), LinkedIn and Tumblr (Yes, Tumblr is still around!) They’ll skip video ads as soon as they can. 87% own smartphones and will turn to social media when making purchasing decisions. Post relevant, credible content, that they care about.

Gen X (41 – 52):

Use Pinterest to reach Gen XersFacebook (They spend almost 7 hours on there a week!), Pinterest and YouTube. Reach them between 9pm and midnight. They are more brand-loyal than other age groups. Gen Xers have the 2nd largest disposable income and they go for nostalgia and comfort. Use videos and visual content with straight-forward clicks to website. Moreover, they prefer to use a computer rather than a mobile device.

Baby Boomers (53 – 71):

Everyone's on Facebook! These folks prefer email to communicate, yet, they spend 11 hours or more on Facebook each week! They’ll respond to quizzes and polls more so than the other generations. They are vocal and opinionated and prefer slower, informational video content.

 

What stands out to me, besides the fact that they ALL USE FACEBOOK, is that missing from here are Twitter and Google+. That calls for another blog post!

However, not everyone falls perfectly into each of these groups. Individual preferences will differ. That’s why you need to clearly define your target markets’ personas, taking into consideration their habits and preferences first (Get a FREE Workbook!).

This infographic from CitiPostMail, breaks down the generations, which social network they prefer and what type of message will catch their attention:

(Note: There is a discrepancy in the age brackets.)

How and Where to Best Reach Different Generations on Social Media

So, now that you have an idea where your target market hangs out, your next step is to learn everything you can about Facebook and the networks that they prefer. Best place to start is right here in your Social Savvy Solution Online Training Center. Here you’ll find, easy-to-follow videos covering all you need to know about each of the major social media networks, their culture and differences, along with strategies for each of them. Also included are videos on how to use hashtags and how to see what’s working and not working. All for just $20/m! Yes, you can, if you commit yourself, watch all the videos in one month then cancel if you wish.

Your Social Savvy Solution Members Only

This  infographic How to Market to Different Generations on Social Media appeared first on Top Dog Social Media.

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It’s About Time! Hashtags Now Work on LinkedIn! Get More Reach!

I couldn’t believe it! I saw “#success” in someone’s post and I thought, “Why not? Click on it to see what happens.” And lo and behold, it created a search for “#success” and all the posts with that hashtag came up! It’s about time, LinkedIn, it took you long enough to incorporate hashtags! It's About Time! Hashtags Now Work on LinkedIn! Get More Reach!

It's About Time! Hashtags Now Work on LinkedIn! Get More Reach! Finally! Twitter was the first social network to use hashtags. Then Facebook picked them up. About that time, LinkedIn was trying to get them to work to no avail. Google+ added them and hashtags are the best way to brand your Instagram pictures and videos.

So, apparently with the new LinkedIn redesign, someone figured it out. They worked on LinkedIn’s mobile app and now also on desktop.

LinkedIn also added new features like being able to easily connect with someone who’s a 3rd level connection without having to upgrade to Premium (Yay!). They also moved everything around. I will soon have updated videos for the Online Training Center – sign up now! 

Use hashtags consistently on all your social media posts.

When someone clicks on it, whether on your post or someone else’s, all the posts with that hashtag come up. Come up with hashtags from your keyword research. Use both common ones like #Success but also create one that is exclusive to your business or an event. Use them for branding.

There’s more on hashtags in the videos in the Online Training Center – get Social Savvy – start now!

Change is tough, but the alternative is obsolesence

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How to Simplify Marketing that is More Complicated than Ever

How Often Should You Blog for Marketing Success?I just watched a webinar on “The Future of Marketing” (this link will take you to the slides). The first presenter, Mark Schaefer made me realize that the “marketing wheel” graphic I use to explain how today’s marketing works is obsolete. Ah, the challenges of keeping up with this stuff!

Before, you wrote a blog post, then shared it on the social networks. Ideally, your target market saw the post, was enticed to click on it, which led them back to your website. Well, that kinda-sorta still works, but it seems like the social media networks, predominantly Facebook, LinkedIn, and I’ll throw in Google+, want publishers to create content just for them. They want to be the content magnets. They want the attention. So your website isn’t the center of it all anymore — the social networks want to be your source of information.

How to Simplify Marketing that is More Complicated than Ever

Source: The Future of Marketing Webinar with Mark Schaefer

What’s up with the Social Media Networks?

The social media networks are in this to make money. They rely heavily on user analytics and data. Moreover, they make changes to their platforms based on that data.

Their objective is to…

  • get people on their platform
  • keep people on their platform
  • collect personal information (yeah, I know, Big Brother)
  • then take that data and use it for advertising

What you need to do in your marketing:

You can’t get around this. To quote the Borg, “Resistance is futile. You must comply.”

  1. Go where your customers are
  2. Focus on building awareness
  3. Give people a reason to go to your website

Because content and information are so readily available — between digital media and apps — people have what they need at their fingertips.

So what’s a small business marketer to do?

  1. Now more than ever you MUST start with narrowing your target market niches. Write up personas, give them names. Get to know them. How do they use social media? What devices do they prefer?
  2. Do some research. Once you’ve narrowed down the niches, you have to study their habits. Breaking them up in to basic age groups is the first key:
    1. Under 25
    2. 25-40
    3. Over 40
  3. What are their pain points/problems that you can solve? How can you make their lives better, easier, more fun, happier, etc.?
  4. Come up with the content that gives them what their looking for — blog posts, videos, podcasts, pictures. What you choose depends on the networks they frequent and what each age group prefers.
    1. Blog posts at least 300 words
    2. Videos that you upload directly to Facebook or Facebook live videos
    3. Short Instagram videos
    4. Short opinion, motivational, inspirational or advice pieces/text accompanied by a picture
    5. Original articles for LinkedIn — especially if you’re B2B
  5. Write this all down in strategic and tactical plans.
  6. Implement the plan
  7. Monitor and measure — check your analytics monthly to see what’s working and not working. Adjust your strategic and tactical plans accordingly.
  8. Plan for the next month – set new goals and benchmarks
  9. Repeat steps 4-8 every month.

By this point you’re probably thinking, “I can’t do this!” “There’s too much!” “I just want to quit!”

That’s why I created Your Social Savvy Solution SIMPLIFIED! Marketing made simple.

Your Social Savvy Solution Simplified! Marketing made easy!Yes, I added another “S”!

If you follow the steps, in that order, you will be able to reach your target market, draw them to your website and convert them into a sale. I outline everything for you. From optimizing your website and profiles for the search engines — both Google and the social networks — to strategizing for each network — to how to measure your efforts. Each step is covered in detail. Even how and where to do research.

Best of all, it’s affordable! Just $20 gets your started! You can watch the all the videos, download all the materials 24/7. Go at your own pace, in your own time. If you’re a morning person, get up early and watch a video or two. If you’re a night owl, watch them at 1am. Whatever works for you! The individual classes are around 15-35 minutes. Everything is in a logical progression. You can view the videos covering where you feel you need more help first then check out the others later on. You have full-access to all training materials.

What’s more, there are new, updated videos each month. As the networks add new features and change things around, I’ll record both presentations and demonstration videos explaining the changes, what they mean to you and what you need to do to adapt it to your business.

Face it. In this age of modern technology, you have to go at the speed of change or definitely get left behind. It’s your choice.

Join now, stop at any time.

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Top 15 Facebook Mistakes You Need to Correct Now

Face it! Facebook is the Big Daddy of the Social Networks. They turned 13 this month! Even B2B businesses should have a presence on Facebook. You want exposure, you need to master marketing on Facebook. You can’t ignore over 1.5 billion people logging on daily! And you can’t make these Facebook Mistakes.

Here are some of the most common Facebook mistakes I see companies making…

  1. Creating a Facebook account in a company name or a fake name. It’s against Facebook’s rules to use a personal account to primarily promote a business. That’s why there are business pages.
  2. Ignoring comments on Facebook – “If you want to build a brand, you have to be accessible to your customers.” ~Robert Herjavec
  3. Not completing the about section. They give you a lot of space – use it.
  4. Trying to upload a rectangular logo into the square. You can’t. It gets cut off.
  5. Having a fuzzy cover graphic. This is your online image. Use quality graphics.
  6. Not inviting your Facebook friends to like your business page. Be selective when you invite them. There will be some that will like it to support you and some that will truly be interested in your business.
  7. Not posting daily on Facebook. Their algorithm is based on people liking and engaging with your posts.
  8. Not taking advantage of Facebook Live Video. This is a great tool to broadcast yourself and gain exposure. Facebook gives more exposures to videos.
  9. Not uploading videos directly to Facebook. FB gives top priority to “native videos”.
  10. Not having a call-to-action button. Every business page has this feature. Use it! Tell people what you want them to do — otherwise, they won’t do it!
  11. Not checking insights once a month. Insights tell you a lot about your audience – what posts they liked the most, where they’re located, demographics, etc. You need at least 30 likes to see insights.
  12. Not using their free Audience Insights tool to see how your target market uses Facebook. Though these are part of their advertising program, you can access them for free and look at demographics of your target audience.Top 15 Facebook Mistakes You Need to Correct Now
  13. Not monitoring your competition’s Facebook pages. You need at least 100 likes to add “Pages to Watch” to your Insights.
  14. Not asking people to check-in at your location. The Facebook Business and Places Directories brings up listings based on reviews and check-ins as well as likes. Popular places get top priority.
  15. Ignoring Facebook. Come on! It’s the largest network. It’s where the people are! Just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean your target isn’t there. Yes, I’m repeating myself.

This is just Facebook Mistakes. How many more mistakes are you making in your online marketing? Download this free ebook to find out….

Are You Making These Social Media Mistakes?

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12 Branding Mistakes You Need to Stop Making Now!

One thing small business owners need to understand is that everything they do online: website, social media pages, Google listings, everything is how people see your business. I see so many business owners make the same Branding Mistakes over and over again. It’s like they don’t care.

It’s Your and Your Company’s Image that is at Stake! 

Some may say, “I do get some sales from the site.” How many are some? 1 a month? Imagine how many you could have if you had a good looking, functioning website with quality images, were blogging regularly and using social media the right way! It could go up to 1 a day or more!

Sure you want to save money by doing it yourself, but invest in some classes and learn how to do it properly and effectively. If you don’t take social media and online digital marketing seriously in 2017, you might as well close up shop.

Here are some of the top Branding Mistakes I see small businesses make.

  1. Branding mistakes: take the time to do it right the first time.Attempting to do it yourself without properly learning how to use the tools. Sure, you can post on Facebook, but do you know how to market on Facebook? You can use Word, but do you know how to use WordPressCreating a website might sound simple enough, but if you don’t do it the right way, it will all be wasted time and effort. 
  2. Not committing to social media long-term. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
  3. Not having a logo! It’s all about branding.
  4. Inconsistent branding. People need to know who you are and what it is that you do at first glance no matter where they find you.
  5. Ignoring your social media accounts. If you have a link on your website to your social media networks, you better be posting regularly! Nothing looks worse than after clicking on a link, I see the last post was months even years ago!
  6. Hiring an intern or student to do your social media marketing. Just because someone knows how to tweet or post on Facebook doesn’t mean they know how to market on Facebook. Whoever you hire to do your marketing, should know marketing first, then be familiar with the social networks, blogging, websites, content marketing, branding and how your particular target market uses each of the networks. Moreover, they should be able to come up with comprehensive strategic and tactical plans. 
  7. Not using an email address with the company URL for business emails. It looks more professional to use “yourname@company.com” rather than “yourname@gmail.com”.  And don’t use AOL! It really dates you!
  8. Not posting quality graphics. There are enough free graphics tools out there so there is no excuse for having fuzzy, cut-off or crooked graphics. 
  9. Putting social media follow buttons on your website that either go nowhere, to the main network page or go to an account that hasn’t been active in years. Don’t put follow buttons on your website until you are active in social media. It makes you look foolish. 
  10. Book your free 30-minute phone consultMaking it all about you. It’s about them – your target market. Serve don’t sell. Don’t just post your stuff! It’s not about selling. It’s about sharing. Share other people’s content that is of interest to your target market. They are thinking, “What’s in it for me?”
  11. Taking Shortcuts like buying Twitter followers or Facebook likes. These are fake accounts and definitely NOT your target market! Don’t do it!
  12. Not realizing that it takes time and effort upfront to build a following. Plan on spending 90 minutes a day on social media and blogging 3 times a week for the first 30 days while you’re building a following. Then you go into management and maintenance mode and based on your analytics, you’ll focus on the networks that are driving traffic to your site and where you’re building relationships.

    What You Need to Know About Social Media and Website Analytics

Your online materials — website, blog and social media — should encourage credibility and trust. Furthermore, they should entice and encourage your potential target to read more, click on a link to download an ebook or contact you.

Are you making some of these branding mistakes? If so, then you’re probably making more. Download this free ebook with all the mistakes I’ve seen out there! 

Are You Making These Social Media Mistakes?

 

The expert in anything was once a beginner.

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Breaking News! Google Plus Events are Back!

Google Plus Events are back! As of January 24, 2017, Google+ is reinstating their events feature. Yay! When G+ rolled out their new look, events went away. Facebook was the only social media network who kept their event promotion feature. They figured they could get companies to pay to boost their events and it worked. LinkedIn, once upon a time, also had events and they went away also. You’d think that a professional networking platform like LinkedIn would give users opportunities to promote their events. Hopefully, with the new changes LinkedIn is making, they’ll bring events back also.

G+’s timing couldn’t be better because we’re starting to plan Greater Phoenix SCORE’s 2017 Symposium in April (more on that later!)

Along with events, Google+ is making some more changes. Apparently a lot of people are participating in Google+ communities. Similar to LinkedIn Groups, there’s a community for just about every industry and interest out there. What’s important is to find an active group where you can mingle with your potential target market and/or potential referral sources and influencers.

As noted in Social Media Today…

“Yes, Google+ still exists, and while it’s hard to know, for sure, how many people actually use it, as of the platform’s latest update last August, Google noted that more than 1.6 million people were still signing up to Google+ communities every day. That seems like a lot, but through the various audience breakdowns and analysis points, all the figures indicate that millions of people are still active on the platform. And Google likely wouldn’t support the product at all if usage rates were too low.”

The key is to find the active people who would be interested in your product or service.

Here’s what else is new on Google+: The old, classic Google Plus is going away.

  • Hiding nasty comments – they call them “low-quality” comments. I call them nasty trolls. Facebook has had this feature for some time. If you do want to see all the comments, you can.
  • Image Zoom – this is a nice feature especially for people promoting locations, photographers, and anyone who uses visuals. Google+ has always been a favorite place for photographers to showcase their work. Even amateurs.
  • Bye, bye older version – You have to get used the new version. In my opinion, they made accomplishing things harder. Actions that used to take one click to do, now take 2 or 3. Nevertheless, I’ve warned the folks who have taken my classes to learn how to get around the new version because the old one will, at one point, go away. And that will be January 24, 2017.

Like it or not, G+ is here to stay. Still, it’s power is in its connection to the Google search engine and SEO. However, if you can reach those millions of people who are on it with your quality marketing message, it’s going to help drive traffic to your site and get you on that invaluable first page of Google search.

The new Google+ is featured in our Social Media Marketing Master Class. These classes will be separated soon so, if you wanted to take one network at a time, you can. Watch your emails for the announcement.

 

If you’d like a 1:1 tour of the new Google+ to make sure you’re setup correctly, click here to book your time.

Change is tough, get over it!

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Top 10 Best Social Media News for the Week of Jan. 6

So how’s the first week of 2017 been treating you? I’m pleased to announce that I’ll be assisting 2 new start-up businesses do market and keyword, research, strategic and tactical planning, setting up their social media platforms and building their following. You’ll hear more about them down the line as I record myself doing a lot of the work so you can learn how to do it yourselves! And that’s what this is all about!

Empowering You to Become Social Savvy!

Here again are this week’s Must-Read, Social Media News You Can Use!

      1. Marketing automation for the little guy is helping to power the new economy – Marketing automation has become very affordable. I use MailChimp (ad link) and it works like a charm for me. The marketing automation feature is only $30 a month. It’s pretty basic and for those of you starting out and trying to grow your email list, you can’t beat the price! However, you have to have an enticing offer so that a visitor will give you their email address. That’s a conversion.

        Related: 3 Elements of an Effective Website that Produces Results


      2. 6 Tactics for Turning Your Website into a Lead Generating Machine – This one goes with the one above. Isn’t that the goal of your website to generate good, quality leads?
      3. Mixed Signals on Social Commerce – I wrote about this in my 2017 outlook for social media piece. 1 in 5 Internet users have actually bought something directly from social media. That’s impulse buying!
      4. 9 Ways to Sell on Social Media – Back when social media began, we were told not to “sell” on social. Social media was supposed to drive traffic to the website and that’s where they convert. Conversely, the social media networks are now making it easier to sell on social.
        Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!
      5. Top LinkedIn Demographics That Matter to Social Media Marketers – Many B2C marketers ignore LinkedIn. Nonetheless, according to the demographics, LinkedIn users have buying power.
      6. Will StumbleUpon Help in Improving the Website Traffic – Some of you may not have even heard of StumbledUpon, but it is a free tool to help with search engine ranking.
      7. Does Content Actually Bring in Customers? – I know some of you are still not convinced that blogging and producing useful content for your target market(s) actually works. Maybe seeing it on Entrepreneur Magazine will persuade you to take it seriously.
        Blogger and copywriter service
      8. Here’s the First Periscope Live 360° Video Taken Underwater – I wrote about 360° video in the 2017 Content Marketing outlook piece. Here’s another cool example. What you can do with this is only limited by your creativity.
      9. 21 Tips on Running a Great Social Media Contest – Contests are a great way to get exposure, grow a following and drive traffic to your website.
      10. Consumer Trust Is Evolving in the Digital Age – People buy from whom they know and trust. Embracing this fact is crucial to marketing success. Interesting data on generational breakdowns regarding the sources they trust. Furthermore, understanding how people in different age brackets use online media is important.
        What You Need to Know About Social Media and Website Analytics

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Your 2017 Success Plan: 10 Social Media Truths You Need to Know

I covered SEO and Content Marketing for 2017. Here we go with Social Media Marketing. Think about this: 10 years ago, in 2006, when Facebook, Twitter even companies like HubSpot were in their infancy, who could have imagined that 10 years later, 2.3 billion people would be active in social media? (See more stats in #10 below.)

If you’ve been ignoring, afraid of, or otherwise not doing any social media marketing, well, continue ignoring it at your peril. Yep. If you want to succeed in 2017; because you want new business; if you want exposure, you need to embrace social media marketing.

“You need to invest in other marketing skills and put as much effort and investments in them.” ~Derek Iwasiuk in Addicted2Success

Here’s what’s going to be HUGE in 2017 in Social Media Marketing

1. Facebook Video

Facebook Live Video part of Content Marketing for 2017 SuccessIn 2016, Facebook introduced Facebook Live Streaming Video. You can broadcast from your personal Facebook page as well as from your business page.

“Facebook’s been refining their focus on video for some time, and you can expect this to continue into next year.” ~Social Media Today

Live and Native Videos get more exposure on Facebook than plain posts. A Native Video is one of your videos uploaded directly into Facebook not just a YouTube or Vimeo link shared on your page.

What You Need to Do: If you remember anything from this post it’s VIDEO FIRST on Facebook!

2. Facebook Search

Imagine this: 2 billion searches daily! And they are constantly changing their algorithm in order to “improve” search. Facebook is getting like Google. They want the most relevant content to come up when someone searches for something. On Facebook, that can be posts, pages, videos, people, shopping, places, groups, apps, anything!

So, it’s crucial that you rewrite your Facebook business page descriptions and make them keyword-centric. Create unique keyword-rich using descriptive content. This also applies if you are an ecommerce site.

“Ignore Facebook at your peril — even if you’re B2B!” ~ Brian Sutter, Forbes

What You Need to Do: Apply the same keyword research you did for your website to your Facebook page. Fill in ALL the boxes.

3. Facebook “Seeking Recommendations”

“Whether traveling to a new place, looking for a hair salon, or searching for the perfect place to eat, people already turn to their friends, family, and local Groups on Facebook for advice. We’re rolling out a new tool that makes it easier to get and organize all those recommendations in one place.” ~ Facebook

Finding local events is going to be part of this service. So, if you have an event, set it up on Facebook from your business page. Make sure your graphic is of good quality and you have the description with all the relevant keywords. They’ll be rolling out a new version of the event dashboard in the next few weeks. (“Rolling out” means that not everyone sees the new format at once.)

What You Need to Do: Make sure your Facebook business pages are setup nicely with good graphics and a call-to-action.

If someone is recommending your services or products, you don’t want to miss out on a potential customer because you’ve been neglecting your Facebook page!

Are You Making These Social Media Mistakes?

4. 360° Video on Facebook

Talk about changing perspective! How cool is this!

What You Need to Do: Investigate to see what’s involved with producing 360° video.

Get started with this article from Search Engine Journal.

4. Social Customer ServiceSocial Media Terms Glossary & Online Marketnig Lingo Guide Free ebook

Enough on Facebook! No, back up. The new Facebook business page design makes it easy for a visitor to message you from Facebook. If you have a fast response time – that is, within hours, not days, you’ll get a badge to display on your page showing you have a quick response time.

Twitter is another one. When people are not happy with customer service, they’ll tweet out their frustrations. It’s up to you to be monitoring any mentions or hashtags and respond quickly. Do not do automated responses. Recently, a certain insurance company was trending on Twitter (thousands of people were talking about it) and one person mentioned @Geico. Well, Geico’s automated response system replied to their tweet, with “We’re here to help! Let us know what we can do for you!”. The funny thing is, they were just mentioning it. They weren’t complaining. Instead, Geico, should have picked up on what was going on and used it to their benefit. What happened was, that lots of people were retweeting that tweet and making fun of Geico’s auto response. Not good.

Social Customer Service is expected by consumers however, not many companies are using it.

It’s all about building relationships. Of course, relationships can’t be built if you automate EVERYTHING!

What You Need to Do: Make sure you check your social media at least once a day and monitor your mentions.

5. Twitter will Become more Powerful

News no longer breaks, it tweets.

And our incoming president, Donald Trump knows it. Like him or not, he knows the power of Twitter. He’d rather tweet out an announcement before informing the crowd of reporters waiting in the lobby of Trump Tower. Donald Trump Tweets Secretary of State pickTweets come up in Google search. Because Twitter goes so fast — like a never-ending news ticker — you can easily share 10-20 posts a day. Use a tools like HootSuite (ad link), Buffer or TweetDeck to schedule content out. However, when sharing pictures, make them “native” on Twitter by uploading them directly on Twitter proper or using TweetDeck.

What You Need to Do: Learn Twitter’s Culture so you can use the Tool Properly and Effectively.

6. You’re Going to Have to Pay to Play

Facebook boost post paid advertisingFurthermore, online ads will be more expensive. In other words, your $25 a week will buy you less reach and keyword bids will be higher in pay-per-click (PPC). My advice still is NOT pay for advertising until you’ve tried doing it “organically” (not paid) for 3-6 months. Although, you can continue to avoid paid advertising, but more than likely, your competition hasn’t. You’re going to have to pay to get extra exposure — especially on Facebook. That’s how Facebook makes money. They fix their algorithm (search engine) to show less from business pages that don’t pay. Nevertheless, there are still ways to get exposure on Facebook without paying and it’s with videos. (See #1 above).

What You Need to Do: Familiarize yourself with the Best Practices of PPC and paid online advertising.

Now, I specialize in non-paid, organic social media and SEO marketing. That being said, if you’re thinking of doing paid advertising, here are a few articles to guide you…

7. Social Conversions

Get Your Social Media Startup Pack now!Get them while they’re hot to buy! Those impulse buyers. They see something they like and have to have it now! Social conversions is a feature that many of the social networks are offering. Pinterest has it down with their Promoted Pins. You pin something from your shopping cart and people can purchase it without leaving Pinterest. The idea is to avoid a shopper having second thoughts or being distracted when they go to your online ecommerce site to purchase something.

Facebook, SnapChat, Twitter and Instagram are all working on providing this service. It’s part of PPC or “pay-to-play” that I wrote about above. The networks are attempting to make it easy to pull in your ecommerce products into their systems, but it may take a little programming on your part. Moreover, ecommerce sites like Shopify and Etsy have tutorials on how to integrate your store in the social networks.

By the same token, on the non-paid side, the new redesign of Facebook’s business pages improved on the call-to-action (CTA) button. Make sure you’ve got yours leading the visitor to the right place to get the most conversions.

What You Need to Do: Familiarize yourself and keep up with the latest new ecommerce in social media features.

Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!

8. Email Matching with Paid Social Media Advertising

Another feature that the social networks are offering is “Email Matching”. You upload your customer email list to the network and when someone on your list logs on, they’ll see your ads.

What You Need to Do: Again, do your research. Learn before spending money.

9. Big Data, Analytics and Insights

Going along with all this advertising comes tracking what’s working and not working. Enter Analytics! Analytics aren’t as scary as they seem and you don’t need to hire an analyst to understand them or to get valuable information from them. Besides Google Analytics, each of the networks has insights and analytics available even if you don’t pay for advertising.

You must check these at least once a month so you can judge which posts were effective and what isn’t bringing you business or doing what you expected. [Related: Determine Your Key Metrics Before You Start]

Free Download: Define Your Target Market WorkbookAll the networks also use the data garnered from users to help you find your target market niche. Additionally, they assist you in targeting your perfect customer. That’s why you need to Define Your Target Market first and then do some research on them. For instance, if you’re on Snapchat trying to reach Baby Boomers, you’re not going to be successful. If you want to reach 12-24 year-olds, then yes, Snapchat is a tool for you.

What You Need to Do: Get into the habit of checking your analytics at the end of each month.

10. Social Media Statistics You Can’t Ignore

In conclusion, here are 10 of 2016’s Big Data stats that should open your eyes to the power of social media marketing.

  1. Close to 2 billion people are active mobile social users (Vendasta). This means that people take their social media with them wherever they go. They access it at all times of the day. This is why it is so important that your website is optimized for mobile (and I wrote about this in the 2017 SEO post) so when a mobile user goes from your social media page to your site, it’s a smooth transition to a conversion.
  2. 84% of Internet users are on Facebook (Vendasta). Even if you’re a B2B business, you can generate leads on Facebook. That’s where the people are! That being said, with more and more businesses, both B2C and B2B, marketing on Facebook, it behooves you to have a distinct strategy to reach your specific target market. Without a good strategic plan, you’ll be wasting time, effort and money and not getting the results you want.
  3. Over 40% of Twitter‘s 317 million active users learn about products and services via Twitter (Vendasta). I recommend using Twitter daily for brand exposure and SEO. (See #5 above)
  4. 7 out of 10 professionals describe LinkedIn as a trustworthy source of professional content (SmallBizTrends). In addition, 50 percent of B2B buyers use LinkedIn when making purchasing decisions. Even for B2C businesses, both your personal profile and company pages on LinkedIn boost credibility. In case you didn’t know, Microsoft bought LinkedIn so look for some big changes to the platform in 2017.
  5. There are 540 million active users on Google+, 62% of them are B2B marketers (Vendasta). Believe it or not, there are active users on Google+. The power of G+ is that everything posted “public” gets indexed in the search engine.
  6. 60% of millennials have an account on Instagram and they hit 500 million active users in 2016 (Vendasta). They grew by 100 million in one year. Facebook owns Instagram and they’re only going to be making it a better user experience.
  7. Pinterest has more than 150 million monthly active users (HootSuite). 60% of pinners are under 40 years old. Though the majority of Pinterest users are women, the male population on Pinterest has increased by 120% in the past year. (Must be all the DIY stuff!)
  8. 50% of young adults in the US watch videos on Snapchat (Vendasta). They hit 200 million users in 2016. 60% of millennials in America use Snapchat. If you’re trying to reach the younger market, you need to consider Snapchat.
  9. There are 900 million unique visitorss to YouTube every month (Vendasta). They are the most visited online platform with 8 out of 10 Internet users visiting YouTube monthly.
  10. Almost 90 percent of marketers say their social media marketing efforts have increased exposure for their business, and 75 percent say they’ve increased traffic. (SmallBizTrends)

What You Need to Do: Stop procrastinating and get your social media act together NOW!

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Last Year’s Social Media Marketing Predicted Trends: What Came True?

Don’t you just love December? It’s the time when all the experts, gurus, geniuses, pundits, authorities and mavens write their recaps of the year’s social media marketing news and trends. They then come out and predict what’s coming in the new year. I’ve been collecting blog posts and articles from all the “experts” out there and will be curating them into my 2017 predictions which I’ll launch next week.

Here I dug up my 2016 Social Media Marketing Trend Predictions for 2016 and we’ll see what came to pass and what didn’t happen.

Facebook

Let’s start with Big Daddy, Facebook. They were supposedly going to offer options for publishers to monetize content. That didn’t happen. At least not that I noticed. They did, however, focus on Messenger, adding advertising options and more features. They have enhanced their Business Directory, internal search algorithm and Places Directory.

What no one saw coming was Facebook Live Streaming Video. That has turned online marketing on its ear. Now any user can broadcast themselves from their personal profile and any business can broadcast from their business page – LIVE! And it’s FREE! Though apps like Periscope (owned by Twitter) and Meerkat offered live video streaming, it took Big Daddy, Facebook making this feature available to its nearly 2 billion users to really make live video a major trend. I’ll cover the future of this in the 2017 predictions post.

Twitter

Though I didn’t have any specific 2016 predictions for Twitter, 2016 has been Twitter’s year and we can thank Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Imagine that President-Elect Trump would rather tweet out his latest news of a cabinet appointee than tell the reporters waiting in the lobby of Trump Tower. Donald Trump Tweets Secretary of State pick

Twitter is merging its Periscope live streaming into their mainline app. Yay! One less app to deal with. Twitter also improved their analytics and advertising audience targeting to compete with Facebook. They also tweaked their platform so you can easily add pictures and links without them taking up valuable 140-character space.

Google+

As predicted, Google+ is not dead, nor is it dying. It’s still Google’s social network that they use to measure what people find popular. They launched the new layout and format focusing on Collections (which are like Pinterest Boards – though not as easy to use) and Communities (which are like LinkedIn and Facebook groups – though not as popular). And of course, Google+ is still a network created by developers without taking the end user into consideration. What used to take 1 or 2 clicks in the old version, now takes 3, 4 maybe even 5 clicks. HOWEVER, Google+’s main benefit is its connection to the Google search engine. Anything posted public is indexed in the search engine. Even doing some micro-blogging on G+ helps with SEO (search engine optimization).

LinkedIn

The professional networking powerhouse, LinkedIn, is on its way to joining Microsoft’s family. They did make changes to LinkedIn Pulse – where they incorporated Pulse articles into the user’s newsfeed. If they’re following a company or a user, they’ll see the articles. They did start calling them “articles” rather than “posts” which was confusing. LinkedIn is actually encouraging people to contact connections for sales by merging what used to be “InMail” — their internal email system — with their text messaging platform. They launched their Profinder, where freelancers can list themselves and receive RFPs (requests for proposals). Access Profinder from the “Interests” menu.

LinkedIn Profinder

Most of the rest of the social media marketing predictions for 2016, I wrote about last year still hold true. Except for the demise of Blab and the slow death of Periscope, with both Facebook, Twitter and now Instagram adding the live streaming video features, anyone can be a broadcaster. We’re still waiting for YouTube Live. Interesting how Google, who was the first to come out with live streaming in Google+ Hangouts is the one that’s now lagging behind Facebook and Twitter with making it simple and user-friendly. IMHO, the Google developers need to stop thinking like developers and starting thinking like the end user.

One thing still holds true, Social Media Marketing is constantly changing!

Stick with Me and I’ll Continue to be Your Guide!

Make 2017 Your Best Year Ever!

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Top 10 Best Social Media News Posts – November 25, 2016

Social media news doesn’t stop for the holidays! In fact, it’s jumping! Everything from #BlackFriday and of course, #SmallBizSaturday, businesses are taking advantage of the free tools that the social networks provide. This week in Social Media News

Here are this week’s top Social Media News Posts:

Note: the text next to the titles are my commentaries.

  1. Longer Tweets Are Here: All You Need to Know About Twitter’s 140 Character Update – Yay! What a pain it was to have to edit your tweet to make the 140 characters when adding a picture, RT or quoted tweet. Good move, Twitter!
  2. What B2B Marketers Can Learn From Their B2C Friends – I bet if you’re B2B (Business-to-Business) you ignore articles with tips for B2C (Business-to-Consumer). But if you think about it, you business customers are your “consumers”.
  3. How to Handle A Crisis On Social Media – Big or small, it only takes one unscrupulous competitor or one unhappy customer and you have a social media crisis on your hands. Here are some good tips on what to do and NOT to do.
  4. Instagram Adds Live-Streaming, Disappearing Messages – Looks like Instagram is trying to be more like SnapChat! Remember, the users of Instagram and SnapChat may not be your target market.
  5. Why – and How – to Map Out Your Customers’ Journeys [Template] – I say this over and over: you must put yourself in your potential customers‘ shoes from what they’re going to enter into the search box to when they’re going to buy. Here’s an article with some nice tips and a template. Print it out, write it out, map it out.
  6. Welcome to the Attention Economy [Infographic] – These statistics are astonishing, but true! You’re not just competing against your competitors. How do you stand out in a noisy world gone social?
  7. Market to Everyone, Reach No One – You need to find your niche. Otherwise, you’re wasting time, effort and money.
  8. 4 Keyword Selection Tips to Improve Your SEO Efforts – Do you want to get on the first page of Google? Then, your blogging needs to be written for the human reader with the search engine in mind.
  9. The #1 Marketing Lesson To Be Learned From The Presidential 2016 Election – How analytics played a huge roll in what the candidates posted on social media.
  10. Black Friday and Social Media – Boost Your Business – OK, I had to put at least one “Black Friday” related article!

This week’s social media news, like last week’s, shows you that you can’t afford to ignore social media marketing. If you’re unsure of HOW to do all this and not spend hours and hours doing it, then you need to get Social Savvy! Check out the resources we have to help you take control of your marketing and be effective.

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