In an effort to steal some thunder from Timehop (which by the way I’m totally addicted to) Facebook is rolling out On This Day so can look back at past posts… and ultimately, never leave the confines of Facebook.
Tinu Abayomi-Paul, web site promotion specialist, and author, is also the principal consultant of Leveraged Promotion, a website promotion company. Their specialty is bringing companies with an existing offline presence the local, national or international exposure they need to increase profitability, by leveraging the cost-effective tools available on the web.
In January 2014, Tinu was named one of the top 50 Industry Influencers by AGBeat. In February 2014 she was also awarded a Women’s Leader Fellowship by the Hot Mommas Project. In September 2012, Tinu is quoted in the CNN article: “Why Business Women are Flocking to Twitter”, as part of the CNN Leading Women showcase. In October 2012, Tinu was featured in TopRank’s yearly updated list of 25 Women Who Rock Social Media. In June of that same year, Tinu was featured in AGBeat’s Business Leader Showcase. In December 2011, Liberated Muse named Tinu as one of the Top Ten Women in Social Media. Whew, that’s a lot of accolades!!
She is a woman in the know and an all around cool connector of people. I was able to catch up to her to get her thoughts on social media and where we are going in the social space.
Q- Why is social media relevant?
Social media is relevant because it provides a layer of communication and data in real-time, one that previously did not exist. In terms of customer feedback, focus groups and other types of research based on end user feedback, you can gather actionable data about a topic faster than ever before. As a marketing source, it helps democratize and facilitate word of mouth within a global context, at a cost low enough to even the playing field for small businesses.
Blogging, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other tools also give power to the individual on a level that hasn’t existed before. We may not all be using it that way yet – but the potential to be able to use your personal voice and opinion to affect change on this level is unprecedented. If you wanted the potential to reach the world with your voice, as little as ten years ago, your options were much more limited than they are today.
For example, if you checked into a hotel in 2002 and had a problem with customer service, you could ask for management’s help to resolve it, but had few other options. Depending on how much the hotel cared about your repeat business, and whether or not customer satisfaction was a primary goal, your voice might be heard by the hotel or it might not.
Armed with social media, companies are now not just marketing to you; they’re marketing to whatever your potential audience reach is. Now, a complaint isn’t just a complaint – it can go on record on Yelp or Foursquare, go viral on Twitter, or be permanently posted to a Google local or Facebook business page.
How do you use social media in your work?
One of my companies helps build marketing systems for small businesses, integrating search, social or reputation management with existing PR or other types of online or offline marketing. All of the activities that increase visibility for a company are more effective in synergy.
Q- What trends to you see in the upcoming year for social media?
1- More discerning choices about what we’re paying attention to – the problem now in social media is that there are too many channels, most of them repeating the same information, though sometimes in different formats. The younger users are enjoying tools like SnapChat, which deploys a shared image, video, drawing, etc for a set period of time, then destroys it.
We’re seeing the results of the backlash, with people opting out of Facebook and other new media channels indefinitely or for set periods of time. And yet you never hear anyone say “I have to quit Googling, it’s just too much.”
The question is: how do we respond to those trends as small business owners and social media professionals?
2- The maturation of the visual web trend. Clearly, the web is becoming increasing more visual, and much less text heavy before our eyes. With internet enabled TV and other devices like Roku that gets the video we view on the web on the big screen, the demand for content that can be consumed on the bigger screen is increasing as well. Early movers will benefit when this trend hits a peak. It may not happen this year but it is coming.
3- The web will be soon be everywhere – our refrigerators will be linked to the grocery store, and we might be able to update our list by sending a direct message in Twitter. At the leading edge of this right now is mobile. If your social content isn’t web enabled, you’re missing out on a lot of additional exposure.
Q- What is your best social media tip?
Start all of your social-related endeavors with research and clear goals. Why this channel? Who uses it? What competes with it? What do we hope to achieve? How will we know we’re successful? And most importantly, what do the people we want to reach want to hear from us on this channel? The data is out there and accessible. Or if you have some access to the community you want to grow with, just ask them what they want.
This post is edited and updated from the original version that appears on the All Things E blog.
Meet Geoff Livingston! Geoff is an author, public speaker and strategist who helps companies and nonprofits develop outstanding marketing programs. He brings people together, virtually and physically for business and change. A former journalist, Geoff continues to write and has authored three books including the social media primer Welcome to the Fifth Estate.
Geoff organized the first Give to the Max Day: Greater Washington in 2011, an event that raised $2 million for more than 1000 nonprofits using online media tools. He also started and sold social media boutique Livingston Communications (2009). He has won awards from the Society of New communications Research, the American Marketing Association, the International Association of Business Communicators, as well as an Axiom Award for his book Now Is Gone. Geoff is a regular conference keynote speaker and panelist. He has presented at Mashable, Social Media for Nonprofits Atlanta and Boston, MarketingProfs, SUPERCOMM, CES, Penton Media, TEDx Peachtree, Procter & Gamble, Comcast, Dell, the U.S. Army (three different commands) and many, many more!
Geoff Livingston’s Tips of The Trade:
How do you use social media in your work? – “It’s obviously a key component of my work, but I find it’s less and less of it. I am building out and managing programs for clients, how-tos if you would as well as strategies.
More often than not, I am teaching organizations how to integrate social into the larger whole so they can get better results out of it. That’s their primary issue, how to do we get people to do more with us instead of Liking, Plussing, Hearting (or whatever else it might be). So, I am building content and calls-to-action for lead nurturing.”
What trends to you see in social media? – “More play to pay. Specifically, it’s getting harder to be seen with branded activities even with what I would call natural and organic social media activities. High dollar content, ads, and native advertising will become more important with each month. And part of that are companies making a profit on what they are offering for free.
As long as the benefit outweighs the costs companies will keep playing, but some networks will certainly suffer engagement for this. I think Facebook is the obvious loser, but I think they feel have to do it to appease stockholders. That’s my assessment.”
What’s your best social media tip? – “Go visual. If you can communicate it with photos, graphics and/or video, it’s going to have more legs. This is particularly true for consumer, low-dollar B2B services and products, and nonprofit activity. Deep text doesn’t work well on a mobile phone, and most people won’t engage with it while they are out and about (Starbucks, Metro, etc.) unless they must.”
Shannon Mouton leads the internal marketing and digital communications efforts for McKinney & Associates. She is a relationship marketing professional, with a passion for utilizing social technology for building business relationships, sharing information and advancing the greater good. Her 20-plus years of marketing, communications, and community-building experiences have afforded her unique opportunities to foster communities where none existed, develop and launch innovative programming and bridge generational, economic and racial divides. Shannon is a contributor to Women Grow Business and has been featured on the Digital Sisterhood Network and American Express OPEN Forum.
I asked Shannon to share some of her best social media tips with me. This is what she had to say:
1. Social media is an part of my workday as I’m responsible for the virtual marketing for the organization. We focus on social tools and platforms that allow us to showcase our expertise and experience as a strategic communications firm. Instead of spreading a little content over a lot of platforms, we do a lot of content over a few platforms. For instance, a team member will write an article, “How to Pitch to Reporters” and we post that article as a blog post and a week later we turn the article into a presentation for SlideShare. We will also post both forms of the information to Facebook and Twitter because we understand people receive and retain information differently.
This post was originally shared on All Things E
You may have noticed that the online marketing strategist in your life has been sweating a little more than usual these days. It’s not because the heat inside your building is set to unnaturally high temperatures to combat the cold. Thanks to recent changes in search engine security, online marketing has just gotten a bit more challenging.
Major search engines – including Google, Yahoo, and little brother Bing – are looking to find that sweet spot between customer privacy and satisfaction. As Christopher Soghoian, technology researcher and Principal Technologist with the American Civil Liberties Union, stated during his speech with Edward Snowden at SXSW, “Google, Yahoo and other internet companies want to sit between the conversations you have with your friends and add value…That business model is incompatible with your security, with your having a secure, end-to-end connection to your friends.”
Players in the virtual world were up in arms after revelations about government internet monitoring were brought to life (synopsis here). In response, Google, Yahoo, Twitter, and six other integral names in the information exchange mix formed Global Government Surveillance Reform. This committee strives to limit government oversight of user data and increase transparency of back-end snooping.
So why are marketing strategists feeling the stress? You may notice (or, if you didn’t, you will notice it now) that after you type a search into Google, the resulting page URL begins with HTTPS. This extraneous S automatically encrypts data or veils them to potential eavesdroppers. This means that keywords, or search terms that eventually lead a potential customer to your site, will no longer be included in the analytics.
Yes, keyword searches are an important piece of the marketing puzzle. They provide valuable insight into how you can move your website up the Google food chain. However, this recent layer of protection is not an impenetrable barrier. Here are some ways that you can respond to this strategy change:
- Enlist outside help. Programs offering ways to interpret available data have begun to surface. For example, gShift Labs unveiled Not Provided, a program that analyzes daily metrics to offer popular keywords. Their website advises this product is best for medium-sized-and-up companies, so if you’re a small business, this may not be work for you.
- Pay to play. Those who advertise on Google using AdWords still receive keyword data. Yahoo and Bing do not. This handy chart breaks down the differences between each major search engine’s handling of secure search.
- Keep doing what you’re doing, and then some. You are the expert on your intended audience. When maintaining your online presence, it’s important to research key terms and common subjects; however, trying to stick to a few choice statements puts barriers on creativity and increases chances of redundancy. Having limited contact with keywords limits your chances of self-imposed restraint. Given that changes in security, protocol will not affect current rankings on search engines, embrace your new-found freedom and get creative with content!
Look at it this way, marketing gurus: secure searching is a challenge, but not a barrier. It’s time to let your flag fly: highlight your great design of infographics and not your ability to work “changemaker” and “sustainability” onto every page. If you build it and build it well, your well-protected clientele will come.
This post was originally written All Things E.
You know you should be active in social media. It’s good for your personal brand and your business. But you just don’t have time to do all those posts. One way to help you get organized is having a social media plan. A social media plan or mapping out what your posts will be on a weekly and even monthly basis helps you think strategically about what you should share with your audience. The social media plan includes a daily breakdown of what you should post most days of the week.
Yes, I said most day so of the week.
Consistency is the key in social media. Don’t ride the social media wave unless you can commit to a consistent schedule that your followers can depend on.
I tend to use themes to map out the days of the week on my social media plans. I am also a big fan of iteration. Below is an example of a Monday through Friday Twitter and Facebook social media plan. I developed this weekly plan for my client, AmeriCorps VISTA. It helped guide my posts throughout the week. You’ll see the days of the week divided up into five categories:
- Mission Monday
- Tip Tuesday
- Webinar Wednesday
- Throwback Thursday
- Follow Friday
To get started on your plan, think about the content you have to share. If you are new to the social space, focus on one social media site at a time. I would recommend you consider getting starting with Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.
Facebook – Most of your friends and colleagues are on Facebook. So are your clients and customers. Why not join Facebook Groups that support your mission and vision? Better yet start a group of your own. It’s a great way to connect and engage with the people that mean the most to you or the people you are trying to reach.
YouTube – Everyone has a story to tell. YouTube provides a forum to allow people to connect, inspire, entertain and inform. If you are comfortable in front of the camera or have a lot of video content, YouTube is a great place to start. Consider producing a web series of your most popular content.
Here are ten tips to keep in mind once you are ready to start your social media plan:
- Determine which platforms you will use – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube or all four
- Devise a daily, weekly and monthly social media schedule that incorporates each platform
- Monthly posts should reflect recurring dates such as holidays, celebrations or conference dates
- Determine who will manage your accounts and how often they will post
- Build upon the content you already have (photos, video, press releases)
- Come up with a regular posting schedule and stick to it
- Use a social media management tool such as Hootsuite to schedule your posts
- If you are cross posting from one site to another, factor in a few organic, original posts for each site
- Remember that it is a plan, a guide, so leave room for unexpected breaking news stories or changes
- Engage, engage, engage and then engage some more
If you need help developing your social media plan, I’m here to help!
LinkedIn has released the findings of The Mindset Divide, a new research study that interviewed over 6,000 social network users across 12 countries on how and why people use professional and personal social networks. According to the study, people use personal social networks to socialize or pass the time of day. No surprises there. In comparison, professional social networks, such as LinkedIn, are used to do what the report describes as “investing time.” However, what is most interesting is the types of content people expect to see on a professional social network versus a personal one. Respondents ranked “Updates from Brands” as the #2 type of content they expect to see on a professional social network but on their personal social networks, it scored at #9 on the list. Advertisers and Marketers should take note of this when setting up, say, their Facebook brand page.
How do you use your personal social networks versus your professional ones?
Originally posted in All Things E
Today Google’s social network, Google Plus, has gotten a new facelift. Google + upgraded its look, making images and videos larger and navigation customizable. Now, is it just me or does this new look of the Profile page mirror that of that other social network… what’s it called again? Oh, yeah, Facebook.
But the new design isn’t just about how your profile will look. The changes are aimed at making the user experience more visually appealing while they also attempt to streamline the interface. On its official blog, Google explained the changes:
A critical piece of this social layer is a design that grows alongside our aspirations. So today we’re introducing a more functional and flexible version of Google+. We think you’ll find it easier to use and nicer to look at, but most importantly, it accelerates our efforts to create a simpler, more beautiful.
Take a look
With the new layout you can:
- Set your own navigation through the site
- Share more easily with your contacts
- Have a dedicated location for Hangouts
- Read what’s trending on the new Explore page
Some people are already up in arms about the new layout. You just can’t please everybody. Although the changes are less than 24 hours old, there has been some early onset backlash and praise. Not quite the backlash that Facebook has gotten for their forced timeline (which I happen to love. I guess it’s just me… I like change. I like change a lot. So I’m thrilled with the new look.
Have you tried out the new Google + layout and if so, what do you think?
According to Wikipedia, a meme is “an idea, behavior or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” It acts as a unit for carrying cultural ideas, symbols or practices, which can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena.
Well, if you ever wondered what a Social Media Manger does, check out this meme. Maybe people will understand what I do… yeah… maybe not.
Aren’t you tired of people poking you on Facebook? Wouldn’t you like your friends to STOP tagging you in photos where it is clear you look a hot mess? What about my biggest social networking pet peeve, tagging me in a flyer, advertisement or picture that I’m not in and don’t even care to see! How about people who only post quotes on Twitter and never engage with you at all? If any of these social media wrongs ring true for you, order the Social Media Citation notes from KnockKnock.biz and start handing giving them to offenders so we can stop social media posting abuse in all forms. By the way, you can go ahead and over share this blog post… I wouldn’t even think of giving you a citation for that. 🙂
If you haven’t heard, Google has rolled out a new social network and I’m giving Google+ two thumbs up. I should, for the past few nights I’ve gone to bed late and gotten up very early just so I can experiment with it. Winning where Google Wave failed, I have to say my initial impression of the platform has been very positive. Over the past few days I have been experimenting, observing, commenting, uploading, testing and getting to know this platform. In its first week, I’m still here checking notifications, trying out new features and getting to know my fellow Google+ community.
You may be asking do we really need another social network. I know for many folks this will be another thorn in their side as they attempt to learn yet site. But for me it was an easy fit. I have a pretty strong presence on Google already so the migration of my public Google profile, Google Buzz posts and Picasa photos was rather easy. Look, I recognized long ago that Google was into world domination so I’ve been on board with them for a while.
After setting up the Goolge+ page the next step was deciding who I wanted to be in your Circle. Circles on Google+ are a grouping of friends, followers and others that you want to interact with online. I’ll admit that being able to drag and drop people into a circle that spins your additions into place is cool as all get out. Then after deciding who I would add, the next task was deciding what kinds of Circles I wanted. Google+ has allowed me to separate my real “friends” from the rest of the online world I engage with. I found myself coming up with zany titles for my Circles. Here are a few Circle names I’ve decided not to use (yet) that include:
- I Don’t Know You But I May Want To
- Why Am I Following You In The First Place
- Didn’t I Un-Friend You On Facebook
- You Think You’re A Friend But You Really Aren’t
- People I’m Suppose To Follow But Don’t Really Like
Oh, the list is endless! Once the Circles were complete the last step was to start engaging with the other early adopters. Similar to Facebook, you can follow the feed and start commenting on or reposting links from others. The handy +1 button, very similar to the Facebook Like button, allows you to easily share posts. Last but not least, the other stand out for me is Hangouts.
The Hangout feature blows me away. Think of it as a big chat service on steroids. You simply contact one or more people from your Circle and ask them to “hangout” with you. Then you can video/audio chat with them. This chat feature clearly sets Google+ apart from all other social networks. However, there is pressure to look good all day long… you never know who might want to hang out with you and you don’t want to get caught looking crazy when someone asks you the Hangout.
Originally one of my favorite features was being able to segregate my posts. I can send them to the entire public or to a certain group of people in my Circle. This alone is a win for me. Now, however, I’ve found a little problem with the Circles. I was invited to what I was told was a “private” Circle. I was then asked a question. The problem, I thought I was having a private conversation between myself and the other person. I had no idea it was Circle of three people. So what I thought was a private conversation between myself and one other person was actually a three-way conversation. Note to self, unless you know the person sent you a notification privately, assume other people can see your reply. Then to send notifications privately you can single out the person by hitting the “+” symbol and typing in their name.
Finally, once I can do multiple posts to Google+ from Twitter and Facebook (I’m not any where near ready to leave those two sites right now) and once I have an iPhone/iPad app that will alert me of my notifications, then I will settle comfortably into Google+ and never leave.
“Daily deals site Eversave talked to 400 women about their Facebook relationships. The company originally conducted the survey as market research on the social network’s influence on the daily deals ecosystem, but Eversave was surprised to uncover the love/hate relationship between women and their online friends.
For example, the majority of female respondents said they had at least one friend who was a “drama queen” on Facebook. A majority also said they had at least one obnoxiously “proud mother” as a Facebook friend.
Most women — 83% of respondents in this survey — are annoyed at one time or another by the posts from their Facebook connections. For these respondents, the most off-putting post was some kind of whine; a full 63% said complaining from Facebook friends was their number one pet peeve, with political chatter and bragging coming in a distant second and third.
The respondents also said at least one of their Facebook friends tended to:
* Share too many mundane updates too often (65%)
* “Like” too many posts (46%)
* Inappropriately or too frequently use Facebook to promote causes (40%)
* Project false information or images of a perfect life (40%)
Read more from our friends a Mashable.com