Entries Tagged 'social media' ↓
December 11th, 2013 — social media
About the author: Gemma Thompson is the author of the best-selling “The British Book of Social Media Marketing“. She is full time social media consultant and loves helping businesses grow. When she’s not working, she can be found watching Dr Who with her teenage daughter, or indulging in a spot of inept D.I.Y (but no, she still hasn’t managed to make her house bigger on the inside than on the outside).
No, we’re not talking about those wonderful little +1 buttons that Google has splashed all over the internet. As great as they undoubtedly are, let’s talk about a far bigger ‘PLUS’.
‘PLUS’ is an acronym for ‘People like us’. Although this can be read in two different ways, and these days the emphasis always seems to be on getting our customers to ‘like’ us, it always used to be used in marketing to describe our customers as being like ourselves, meaning the emphasis was on the ‘us’.
Now, I’m a social media girl so I love it when my clients’ customers ‘like’ their business pages! But getting people to like you becomes a whole lot easier if you empathise with them, so today let’s go back to the old-fashioned ways and talk about that. After all, social media is just a new way to do the same old thing, and that is to get to know each other!
Although almost everybody in the world has the same basic hopes and dreams (to love and be loved, to live a better lifestyle than our parents and to make sure our kids have it even better than us), our craving for kinship is something ingrained within us and geographical ties are often more important than experiences or point of view.
When I was younger I spent a lot of time travelling and it never ceased to amaze me just how hard we try to find things in common with people we meet on the other side of the world and how those kinship ties can be stronger or weaker depending on such things as where we grew up.
Even when we knew none of the same people the fact that someone else was from our home town, county or region was enough to produce excited squeaks of recognition.
All nations have social codes, characteristics and habits that are deeply ingrained in us and damnably difficult for us to break. The Italians are known as passionate, Germans are organised and the French are nonchalant. When it comes to marketing our businesses these can have a huge impact; it’s important that our brand and communications are not only honest representations of us and our businesses, but also that they do not offend cultural sensibilities.
For us Brits humour is one of our biggest personality traits and we are rightly proud of it. We also talk about the weather… a lot!
Of course there is a lot more to us than that and there are plenty of personality variations too, but the more we get to know our customers and talk to them about our similarities, and the more comfortable they will feel talking to (and therefore buying from) people like us.
What do you think?
Do you want more people like you buying from you? I’m always interested in hearing your views, experiences and questions so please comment or get in touch.
November 13th, 2013 — social media, social media marketing
Social media is immediate.
Once you’ve pressed send, your tweet, Facebook update or Google+ status shoots out into cyberspace to be read by your followers.
That’s it – bam – your thoughts have slipped from your fingers and are out there for all to see.
Did you see that phrase?
If you’ve outsourced your social media content how can you get your thoughts out there?
You have to be there to build a relationship
How many times have you been told social media is all about building relationships?
So why have you ignored it and got someone else to do your thang for you?
To me it’s like being asked to pitch for a new job and sending in someone else to do the selling for you.
Or going on a date, but sending someone else in your place.
If you’re a small or medium sized business there’s no reason why you should be passing the buck in this way.
You don’t have to spend hours doing it; dipping in and out is fine. Plus, if you have the relevant apps on your smartphone, you can get hold of your alerts (when people contact you via social media) wherever you are, so you can make sure you respond quickly.
“But I need a constant presence”
Sure, you need to update and tweet regularly, but you don’t have to be chained to your social media channels to do that. If you blog (what do I mean ‘if’, of course you do) make sure you set up a feed to each of your social platforms so once a new post is published all your followers get to hear about it.
Other than that, put something out there when you want to. There are no hard and fast rule that says ‘thou must tweet 20 times a day,’ tweet when you want to tweet.
When it comes to interacting with others, during your breaks have a quick peek at your feeds to see what people are saying. Set up lists so it’s easy to find those you want to follow and engage with. Then, when they post something, you can easily pick it up and start a conversation.
It all comes down to relationship building and you can’t that if you’re not the one doing the talking.
You know your business better than anyone. There’s no great mystery to what makes a good tweet or update, so when you have something to say, or you want to comment on something in the news, say it, don’t waste your money paying someone else to do it for you.
Doing your own social media updates will make sure your personality shines through and that’s what your followers want. They want to see the real you, they want to get to know you and they want to know interact with you.
Stop paying that retainer and start chatting.
September 11th, 2013 — blog, blogging, blogging for business, social media
It’s an age-old problem every blogger faces – how can you be sure you’re writing the right kind of posts that your readers want to read?
You could blindly write about anything that came into your head, but how can you be sure that’s what your readers want to learn about?
Or you could blog smarter.
How about using your social connections to discover the topics that will perform well and be a hit with your readers?
After all, what’s big in your social sphere will be big on your blog, right?
You already know that the headline of your blog post has a huge effect on its popularity.
If it’s eye-catching, people are more likely to read it.
The best headlines (and the most successful ones) are those that show an obvious value to the reader. So, all you have to do is take a look at the leading brands and thought leaders in your industry and find out which of their articles are performing best.
Track them down on Twitter and Facebook and look at the blogs that are getting the most hits. What are they talking about? What issues are they addressing? Then use that knowledge to create your own post.
2. What do you want?
One of the best ways to generate a fresh list of blog topics is to ask your readers.
Don’t just write ‘what do you want to read about?’ Instead, think about a particular area and ask what issues they face, what do they need to make their lives easier etc.
Then, once you have received feedback from them, you’ll have a ready-made list of topics to write about. What’s more, because the list came from your readers, you have an eager audience ready and waiting to read your words of wisdom.
3. Facebook Insights
If you use Facebook Insights you’ll get a birds-eye view of the most popular posts you’ve written in terms of their overall reach, engagement and how many people are talking about them.
This type of information is priceless as it means you can identify the main topics your audience are interest in to boost your post’s reach.
You can also identify your most popular posts using a tool called Social Sprout. This shows you which tweets had the biggest impact so again, you can make sure you provide more of that type of information for your followers.
As you can see using your social connections as guidance you can take the guesswork out of your blogging. Now you can be sure that what you’re ‘putting out’ there is what your readers want.
Author: Sally Ormond, Copywriter and MD at Briar Copywriting Ltd. Follow her on Twitter and Google+
July 31st, 2013 — Content marketing, social media, social media marketing, social networking
Everyone knows that content marketing is the way to go.
With SEO becoming more social, it’s essential that businesses start to get great information out to their potential customers, to remain visible in the search results.
But what do you do when it’s ‘out there’?
Do you tweet a link and leave it at that?
No, you must engage in smart marketing.
It’s up to you to produce marketing that your customers want – useful information that builds trust and engagement.
Shouting about what you’re doing through social media will help get that information out to a wider audience.
You’ll know if you’ve hit it right because your followers and Facebook fans will then share it.
If your information is useful, relevant and valuable to them, then they will share it for you. This will get it out to a wider readership who’ll then share it with their friends too. And so it goes on until, before you know it, your audience of a few hundred has transformed into one of thousands.
That’s how the smart marketers do it.
They leverage their own audience to push their message out further.
So when you next create a video, podcast, blog or article, make sure it’s:
Then share it through your social media channels and watch what happens. Of course, not every piece of content will strike gold, but when one does take a look at why it worked so well and replicate it.
Sally Ormond – copywriter, tweeter and Google+
July 12th, 2013 — Content marketing, search engine optimisation, seo, social media, social media marketing
Let’s get one thing straight.
Content marketing is great. Social media will widen your reach. SEO (search engine optimisation) will boost your visibility. But if you really want to make an impact you must do all 3.
By combining the power of great content, social engagement and search visibility you will become an unstoppable force, pushing aside your competitors.
[Like that image?]
So what should you be doing and how do these 3 elements work together?
Blogging is the most popular form of content marketing.
It’s a great way to share your knowledge with the world and promote your business through your expertise.
But if you simply write and publish, you’re limiting your reach.
Make sure your blogs are written with keywords in mind to help their SEO potential. Then, make sure you promote them through your social media outlets to widen your audience.
Newsletters and email marketing
There’s no better way to get your content out to your customers than through newsletters and email marketing.
When you’ve got great content you want to shout about, send it to them, or a snippet with a link back to your blog. And make sure your social media links are clearly shown so people can choose to interact with you through those channels too.
To further your reach and influence, make a list of industry websites, magazine and bloggers and ask if they will consider you as a guest blogger.
Writing your articles with SEO in mind will boost your visibility as will the link you’ll get back from the publication.
To get an extra lift, make sure you shout about your article through your social media channels.
Social networking and social media
Both of these have become part and parcel of everyday life, so your customers will expect you to be using them.
Use them to engage and chat with your audience as well as promote your blogs and articles.
Have you noticed how much time you spend on your smart phone?
More and more people are using them to browse the web, so it’s essential your website is mobile friendly to increase your potential audience.
Last but not least. Video is a very powerful marketing tool and, when coupled with great SEO and social sharing and promotion, can draw shed loads of traffic your way.
There you go – content marketing, SEO and social media have to work together if they are to be effective.
Sally Ormond – copywriter, blogger, tweeter and Google+
Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net