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Posts Tagged ‘social media’

To Facebook, or Not to Facebook? That is the Question.

January 22nd, 2015 by Jeff Mangels

Everywhere you look, that familiar “f” logo seems to be there. From billboards to restaurant receipts and cereal boxes, Facebook has become an integral part of social media strategies.

Businesses all around the world are taking advantage of social media and making a name for themselves. Without a doubt, one of the most established and effective social tools thus far has been Facebook. Is it right for your business though? Let’s take a look at a few staggering statistics around Facebook and what they mean to you.

To Facebook or Not to Facebook?


Statistic:
Active users total more than 1.35 billion, worldwide. This is a 14% year-over-year increase.
Take away: To answer the burning question of whether or not your business should have a Facebook presence, the general consensus is: yes, you should (more on this later). The vast majority of you will want to incorporate Facebook into your marketing mix. The Facebook opportunity is too big to ignore.

Statistic: 864 million people log onto Facebook on a daily basis. This is a 19% year-over-year increase.
Take away: A growing number of users are actively engaging Facebook, making them promising audience for marketing efforts.

Statistic: Photos are uploaded 300 million times per day.
Take away: Again, this is a strong indication of engaged users. It also serves as a reminder that you will be competing for users’ attention, so make your efforts memorable.

Statistic: Highest traffic occurs mid-week between 1:00pm and 3:00pm.
Take away: Consider this statistic when trying to reach a larger audience and drive more traffic to your site. Strategically time important status updates in order to optimize your marketing efforts.

Statistic: Users spend, on average, 21 minutes per visit to Facebook.
Take away: Use your opportunities wisely. You only have a short window to make your impression. Be sure your posts are interesting, unique and relevant.

So, does your business need a Facebook presence? Ultimately, it’s up to you. Research highlights the importance of having an online presence beyond your standard website. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Your customers. Are they likely to be active on Facebook? Would your customer base have an interest in connecting with your business page on Facebook?
  • Market expectations. While Facebook pages are expected for businesses in some markets, think about your industry. Would a Facebook page be useful or bring value to your customers? How would your customers benefit by “Liking” your company on Facebook?

Finally, if you decide to create a Facebook page for your business, you need to commit to maintaining it. This requires regular interaction by posting updates and content as well as interacting when customers comment. While a Facebook page allows fans of your business to post positive feedback, the opposite is true too. Keep in mind that people can also post negative comments or complaints which can be viewed by the public. Rather than ignoring less than positive comments, Forbes Magazine offers suggestions on how business owners can handle negative comments.

The great part about Facebook is that any business can get started by simply creating a free Facebook account and connect with customers. Once your page is established, you can start sharing business news, post online specials, ask for feedback and, ideally, grow your fan base. If you do make the leap into the world of Facebook, make it count. You’ll be in great company.

Need help with your social media presence and strategy? Contact Launch Marketing today! Be sure to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to keep up with the latest B2B marketing tips and trends.

Sources:

http://investor.fb.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=878726

http://blog.bitly.com/post/22663850994/time-is-on-your-side

http://gizmodo.com/5937143/what-facebook-deals-with-everyday-27-billion-likes-300-million-photos-uploaded-and-500-terabytes-of-data

http://www.infodocket.com/2014/09/18/social-media-u-s-adults-will-average-21-minutes-each-day-on-facebook-in-2014/

http://www.hotforsecurity.com/blog/facebooks-latest-reading-list-includes-your-text-and-multimedia-messages-7804.html

Going social is one of the many ways employees can increase brand visibility and become company advocates. According to Top Rank Online Marketing, when it comes to sharing information about your brand, 41% of people believe that employees are more trustworthy than a company CEO or PR Department. You should take advantage of employees’ social networks by encouraging them to share branded content.

Social media channels such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Google+ are transforming the way we work and interact. Social media allows people to stay in touch, share knowledge, and populate ideas regardless of rank, title, experience or location. These interactions can also help you to build stronger, more successful business relationships.

While encouraging employees to stay connected via social media on behalf of the company, employees need to understand that certain guidelines are in place to protect them and achieve the company goal of increasing brand visibility. If they contribute to blogs, social networks, wikis, or additional types of social media, rules of engagement should always apply.

3RulesofEngagement

1. Disclose

Your honesty (or dishonesty) will be quickly noticed in the social media environment. Please represent your company ethically and with integrity.

  • Be transparent: Use your real name, identify that you work for your company, and be clear about your role.
  • Be truthful: If you have a vested interest in something you are discussing, be the first to point it out and be specific about what it is.
  • Be yourself: Stick to your area of expertise; write what you know. If you publish to a website outside your company, please use a disclaimer something like this: “The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent Company X’s positions, strategies, or opinions.”

2.  Protect

Make sure that transparency doesn’t violate your company’s confidentiality or your own privacy. Remember, if you’re online, you’re on the record – everything on the Internet is public and searchable. And what you write is ultimately your responsibility.

  • Don’t tell secrets: Never reveal your company’s classified or confidential information. Also, please respect brand, trademark, copyright, fair use, and trade secrets. If it gives you pause… pause rather than publish.
  • Don’t slam the competition (or your company): Play nice. Anything you publish must be true and not misleading, and all claims should be substantiated and approved.
  • Don’t overshare: Be careful out there – once you hit “share,” you usually can’t get it back. Plus being judicious will help make your content more crisp and audience-relevant.

3. Use Common Sense

Perception is often reality and in online social networks, the lines between public and private, personal and professional are blurred. It is important to know that by identifying yourself as an employee of your company, you may be creating perceptions about your expertise.

  • Add value: There are millions of words out there – make yours helpful and thought-provoking. Remember, it’s a conversation, so keep it real. Build community by posting content that invites responses – then stay engaged. You can also broaden the dialogue by citing others who are writing about the same topic and allowing your content to be shared.
  • Keep it cool: There can be a fine line between healthy debate and incendiary reaction. Try to frame what you write to invite differing points of view without inflaming others. And you don’t need to respond to every criticism or barb. Be careful and considerate.
  • Did you make a mistake? If so, admit it. Be upfront and be quick with your correction. If you’re posting to a blog, you may choose to modify an earlier post – just make it clear that you have done so.

Social Media continues to grow as a viable means of business communication, so why not encourage employees to be brand advocates? Following these three rules of engagement will help employees become more comfortable and confident in sharing internal company branded content. For tips on increasing engagement with your external audience through social media, look here.

Does your company encourage employees to be brand advocates? We’d love to hear your story!

 

Marketing Tips for Effective Tweets

October 9th, 2014 by Somer Klepper

With social media being the go-to for sharing information (especially in people’s personal lives), many assume that everyone knows how to write tweets, craft Facebook posts, and what is appropriate for LinkedIn and what is not. Yet when developing social media for a business, the tactics and content are very different than what would be used personally. For instance, Twitter often is believed to be a simple update of copy with a bit.ly attached, but there are many things to consider when tweeting to be most effective and to achieve set goals.

To help guide your tweets for business, here are several marketing tips that will help you maximize the impact of each tweet:

Hashtags

Hashtags are the best way for people to find your tweets on specific topics, but be careful to not overuse them. Only hashtag common searches, trends and/or topics that are applicable to your message/industry. Try to insert the hashtag words next to the bit.ly.

Characters

The most effective tweets are between 120-130 characters. This length gives the update some substance, but is short enough for the viewer to want to see the attached content.

Bit.lys

When attaching a bit.ly, try to place it as early as possible in the tweet, about 25 percent of the way through. It will receive a much higher CTR according to Dan Zarrella of HubSpot.

Twitter ctr

Images

Use an image when possible. Tweets with images report double the engagement than tweets without an image, according to research by Simply Measured.

Bill of rights

CTAs

Let your viewer know what you want them to do. Use words like, “Click,” “Check” and/or other adverbs and action words to guide them. Using “Please” is often appreciated and viewers respond well to this.

Retweeting or using “via”

Retweeting or posting content via others is common. It’s fair to use either, but it helps to change the copy and direct the headline in your words to highlight something specific from the content or to add your own input about the content – this is when you use “via” the source.

Launch Tweet

Content that Deserves Extra Visibility

If you have content that you specifically want or need for followers to see, tweet the information twice daily at different times. It’s suggested to edit the copy in the update and continue with the same link.

The average lifespan of a tweet is 18 minutes. That being said, it’s imperative to follow best practices and make each tweet count to the fullest to gain the maximum amount of visibility and engagement.

Blog BandaidWith the digital capabilities at our fingertips in 2014, things change every day.  As an individual, we each have the ability to ‘design,’ if you will, what we want our digital life to look like and we get to select what we choose to follow in our social media outlets.  As a business, this allows for great opportunities IF you can keep your audience and grow it at the same time.  Therefore, getting your audience to share your message is absolutely key.

Sharing relevant and timely content allows you to reach the top of your current iceberg, but what about the potential below – the friends of friends, the grandmothers, and the customers that are possibly unaware of what your business provides?

As a marketer in a sea of advertisements, what are you doing to get your demographic to keep you as they customize?  How are you encouraging that same audience to share your message?  Apply methods that individualize the message so that it’s worth sharing.   Create the ‘Care to Share.’

I attended a webinar hosted by Marketo called “The Definitive Guide to Social Marketing.”   Sanjay Dholakia, CMO of Marketo, and Jon Miller, VP of Marketing Content and Strategy for Marketo, delivered an exceptional presentation for both beginners and intermediate marketers to get back to the basics of what works.  Marketo notes the five motivations to get your audience to share your message – which is the ultimate goal in social marketing through advocacy and loyalty

Here you will find five methods to guide you when considering social media and desiring authentic engagement.

5 Motivators to Generate the ‘Care to Share’  with Your Audience

  1. Reputation:  This is when we add value to a reader’s reputation to their personal digital audience – the opportunity to say, “I know this, so I will share it with you.”
  2. Access to something exclusive:  This is the Maserati factor – it’s the leg-up; such as a $200 discount to share the message with eight people.
  3. Co-creation:  Granting ownership to a reader.  People want to feel like they took part in something that gets attention.
  4. Competition and winning:  Who doesn’t want to win?  Enough said here.
  5. Altruism:  The recent ALS Ice Bucket challenge is the most obvious and best recent example of this.  People shared this because it was fun, but also because it made them feel good about contributing to a cause.

For the time we spend creating content, we should keep the five motivators in mind to help carry our messages as far as possible .  Stay focused on reaching your audience as individuals as you’re asking them to be on your team and vouch for you.   These methods can be applied across all social media outlets and you will see results as your numbers jump from share to share, click to click.  Create the ability to reach the lower half of that iceberg and beyond.

Looking for other tips and methods to generate leads? Contact us today! Be sure to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to keep up with the latest B2B marketing best practices.