I overheard this partial exchange while running alongside two complete strangers in a community road race yesterday:
Woman 1: “I want to set up my blog around the topic of psoriasis. That’s a lot of people. Then I can link from there over to my products…”
Woman 2: “Sounds great!”
The basic formula for social marketing is no secret anymore.
Everyday business-people and the individual entrepreneur are “getting it”, when it comes to connecting with customers in social channels. This person – and I have no idea what she was selling – understands her audience’s Conversation Zone, and was seeking to go there and meet her market in that very broad, conversationally-interesting space.
by Dan Weingrod
Last week Facebook announced a number of changes to its platform. While many had expected to see an overhaul of the site’s design, the announcement focused on some seemingly smaller enhancements. However, one of these, a new structure for Facebook Groups, could become a breakthrough in building deeper loyalty, ubiquity and real world utility for the biggest social platform of all.
What’s different about Facebook Groups is that its new structure and approach may solve what Mark Zuckerberg called: “the biggest problem in Social Networking”. The problem is actually very critical for any social network: How can you easily and seamlessly build or replicate real world relationships you have with groups of friends? Think about it, when you want to get together with friends in person you don’t want your Mom or Uncle suddenly popping into the discussion. You want to get together and share in a way that is relevant to the group. Up to now though this type of activity lived on the Wall or News Feed for everyone to see and comment on. For many people this was fine and it was critical in growing many friend networks and Facebook adoption. But for many more was overwhelming and brought up the same question: What if you didn’t want EVERYBODY to see your wall posts?
Facebook has tried a number of ways to solve this problem. There has long been the option to create lists, but it was too much effort. As Zuckerberg noted, “The most we’ve gotten is 5% of people to make a list”. Another option explored was algorithmic, but in the end they arrived at a solution by considering basic user activity.
Apparently 95% of Facebook users are tagged in photos. Tagging is a relatively simple task, initiated by the “tagger” and one that essentially brings the “tagee” into a group sphere. The core of the new Groups concept is that, like tagging, membership begins with the group organizer who invites members by simply typing their name. The new Group structure adds one more critical feature: The option to make new groups private or public. These combination of these features are what will lead to Facebook Groups’ success.
The self proclaimed “holy grail” of this book? Email that’s so effective it cuts down on email. To accomplish this simply S-E-N-D:
“S” Simple: Pare down your message to be as tight and concise as possible.
“E” Effective: Be sure your message is effective and ask others for feedback.
“N” Necessary: If it’s not necessary it should be deleted.
“D” Done: Ask yourself, am I moving things forward or just off my desktop?
by Danielle Cyr
A recent post by Alexandra Samuel on The Conversation, 10 Reasons to Stop Apologizing for Your Online Life, contends that IRL is a lie and sign that we are in denial about reality (and life) in the 21st century. While I agree with many of the points Samuel made, it got me thinking about people who, pardon the term, IRL are polar opposite to who you meet when the relationship moves offline.
We’ve all been there. Hit it off on Twitter and decided to meet for coffee. Been twit-matched by another tweep because we seem like a perfect virtual match, but sat in an awkward silence face-to-face. Wondered if we had the right Twitter handle show up to make our IRL acquaintance. On the flip side, we’ve all gotten what we thought we were getting when taking a relationship from virtual to face-to-face terms. (Although, I’m sure one could contend that Skype gives us a virtual face-to-face relationship, but, alas, I digress.) The question is: how and why does it happen?
Believe it or not, twitter is more than just a place to tell the world what you had for lunch. With over 60 million current users and growing, it’s a perfect place to take your job hunt. By adding to the conversation, twitter can help you:
- Gain credibility in your field
- Build meaningful professional networks quickly and effectively
- Introduce new opportunities and land a job
However just like LinkedIn, simply joining twitter will get you nowhere. You need to develop a well-defined strategy catered specifically to your needs. Here are four easy steps that will get you well on your way and the tools that will help you get there.
1) Create a focused, targeted profile
The first step is creating your presence on twitter. Everything about twitter is short and concise. Your profile needs to say everything important about you in the time it takes to read half a sentence.
#1) Claim your twitter handle. Your goal is to get noticed so use your real name. If your name is taken, use some variation with a professional spin. (example: PR_PeggySue)
#2) Upload a professional head shot. Twitter is about meeting new people who share your passions and interests. Nobody wants to share with a default graphic. (Tip: use the same profile picture across all your social networks).
#3) Write a professional, targeted bio. You only have 160 characters, so make them count. Strip away all the fluff and pinpoint your most important qualities. Why are you on twitter and what are you passionate or knowledgeable about? Include keywords in your profile to help others find and connect with you. (Tip: Don’t forget to link to your personal website or Linkedin profile)
#4) Create your custom background. If you keep your background as default, you are wasting prime real estate. Use TwitterImage to promote your other sites and profiles. The whole point is connecting, so direct your audience to other places where they can actually connect. (example: Dan Schawbel’s profile here http://twitter.com/danschawbel).
Did you ever wonder why you never see some of your friends in your Facebook News Feed? If you only have 3 friends you probably get to see all three in the News Feed, but if you have few hundred there are most likely a handful that never show up. Tom Weber and The Daily Beast did a one month test to see if they could figure out how Facebook’s News Feed algorithm works.This also applies to business pages. If the members of your organization’s page on Facebook have a few hundred friends and like a lot of business pages, you’ll have to fight for your spot in their News Feed.
The Daily Beast’s one-month experiment into Facebook’s news feed yielded the following discoveries:
- A bias against newcomers
- “Most Recent” doesn’t tell the whole story.
- Links are favored over status updates, and photos and videos trump links.
- “Stalking” your friends won’t get you noticed.
- Raise your visibility by getting people to comment.
- It’s hard to get the attention of “popular kids.”
As a business owner getting started on social media, you may read that and think that it would be fairly impossible to grow your business page, especially if you won’t be showing up in anyone’s News Feeds because you’re new and you don’t get any interactions. Whenever I do presentations I always get asked by those getting started on Facebook how they can begin to grow their page members. Here are the tips I give to all of my clients:
The BizBuzz Social Media Conference announces the start of Ticket Tuesday Contest. The contest is geared to demonstrating the power of social media for brand awareness. How it works: participants who mention the conference hashtag (#bizbuzzCT), in their tweets on Tuesdays (11/2/10, and 11/8/10), earn one point. To show the speed and connectivity of social media, if a participants tweet is retweeted by a friend or colleague on a Tuesday, the participant earns 5 points. If a ticket is purchased on the Tuesday and the participants twitter handle is referenced, the participant earns 25 points.
Each Tuesday one participant will win a ticket. No purchase necessary to win.
Have you ever wondered why people decide to become fans of Facebook pages? Understanding the reasons people become fans can help your business or brand develop better strategies.
In this article, I take a look at two studies.
The first reveals why consumers fan businesses on Facebook. The second one examines how marketers are keeping up with the ever-changing world of social media.
#1: Nearly 40% of Consumers “Like” Companies on Facebook to Publicly Display Their Brand Affiliation to Friends
As Facebook grows, we’re able to learn even more about the behaviors and preferences of its users. As Facebook continues to change, new stats surface to give us an even better idea of how consumers on Facebook prefer to interact with brands and companies. A new report released by ExactTarget and CoTweet found that discounts and “social badging” were the primary reasons consumers Like brands on Facebook.
Almost anyone these days can throw together 140 characters and call it a tweet. But to use Twitter for maximum business impact there are many tried and true content sources ready to be used.
In this post I’ll introduce practical ways to use good content for your tweets, everything from A to Z.
Think about the questions your customers and prospects asked you this past week. Or maybe there are the repeat questions you’ve already answered on the FAQ page of your website.
To get started, create a list of questions, and answer them in your tweets one by one—paying particular attention to the most relevant at this time. For example, focus on seasonal questions, current rates and discounts, promotions and sales or commonly asked how-to’s in your business and industry. Save the list and add to it as you go along. What you don’t use this week may make even more sense a few weeks from now.
#2: Behind the Scenes
Anne Handley refers to this type of content sharing as the “insider’s view of your company,” where you have the opportunity to share updates about the projects and work you’re currently involved in. You can also use behind the scenes as an opportunity to welcome a new client or feature any other newsy development. Give readers or followers an inside look at your company.