Tag: Social media marketing

Getting Social for Business

Get online, get found and grow your business with social media

By RuthAnn Hogue, GoDaddy

Getting social for businessSocial media has long since taken the leap from an ever-growing collection of forums and apps to enhance your social life to the realm of valuable business tool. If you’re still waiting to join in, here are some reasons why you should.

First, everyone else is doing it. Regardless of what your mother said, sometimes this does matter. Granted, it’s still not wise to jump off a cliff. You can trust her on that one. But if you are a small business trying to reach critical mass you need to get your message in front of potential clients. Today, that means being where they are. And that is on social media.

So, what exactly is social media for business?

Isn’t it just a bunch of egotistical people posting selfies on Facebook and Instagram or snapping pics of themselves on Snapchat using apps to add silly pig noses?

Isn’t it just for kids or those who cannot be bothered express themselves in more than 140 characters on Twitter?

What about all those people going crazy trying to catch imaginary creatures using the Pokѐmon Go app on their smartphones?

And Periscope, isn’t that just a place where users gather to watch whatever someone else is willing to broadcast?

Yes, but each is so much more.

Here are some real-world social media business applications that might make your life better.

Buy the numbers

Still the big daddy of social media, Facebook as of June 2016 reported on average of 1.13 billion active users daily. While using Facebook is free, access to those users is for sale. Because Facebook has so much personal information on its users, targeting your demographic sweet spot is completely possible.

It’s a Snap

Meanwhile, Snapchat was reported as of June 2016 as having 150 million logged-in users. While its content is fleeting, new upgrades now allow users to save memories to create stories. Whether you use Snapchat to share pics of a live event, let people know about an event on deck, post a coupon or offer other perks, it also has the ability to target—now including geographically.

Instagram for Business

For those relying on a personal account to share Instagram images, it’s time to upgrade. The popular photo-editing and sharing app now offers accounts just for business. Unlike its personal accounts, Instagram business accounts allow you to run analytics. In addition to your own posts, you’ll also be able to purchase ad space when you make the switch.

Tweet it up

Twitter is heating up among teens and tweens who want to escape a Facebook landscape increasingly inhabited by their parents and grandparents. Its user base had reached 313 million by the second quarter of 2016, which can easily be targeted using hashtags.  While sponsored hashtags for specific topics or events are available, anyone can create one at no cost. All it takes is a hot topic, a good network of followers and your message can be retweeted around the globe.

Scope it out

Periscope, an offshoot of Twitter, is no longer just for virtual voyeurism. Kind of. You still get to watch whatever someone else decides to live stream. You still get to post comments in real time. Unless marked with the hashtag #save, content disappears within 24 hours.

Only now, in addition to people broadcasting random content, marketing-savvy business owners are using the platform to share content featuring everything from tutorials for hairdressers on the latest cuts and styles to messaging on how they can brand or marketing your business.

Of course, social media is ever-changing and constantly growing. Keeping current is a must. Unless you want to hang out alone.

Check out SCORE’s classes on Social Media and online marketing presented regularly.

About the Author: RuthAnn Hogue, GoDaddy

Based in Arizona, RuthAnn Hogue is the owner and founder of Whiptail Publisher’s Syndicate, a published nonfiction author and a contributor to the GoDaddy blog. The recovering journalist occasionally breaks out her 1979 Gibson Les Paul Custom Deluxe Silverburst rock ‘n’ roll guitar when she wants to let loose. A devoted fur mother, RuthAnn makes time to spoil all four of her Jack Russell terriers when she is not tweeting from @MyWhiptail or posting on Facebook @whiptailpublishing.

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How to Establish Your Brand in Social Media

This post originally appeared in the AZ Social Media Wiz Blog.

You are Your Brand!

You Need to Know How to Establish Your Brand in Social MediaWhether you like it or not, you are part of your brand. Especially if you’re a consultant, service provider, designer or professional anything.

You join a group like the chamber of commerce or an association as your business to promote your business. However, you attend networking lunches and other events as yourself. At that point, you are your brand!

So, your personal profiles in the social networks play an important part.

I know some of you want to stay as incognito as possible – get over it.

Like joining a networking organization, you get out of it what you put into it. That’s how today’s marketing works.

You can automate a lot of the media, but you still have to be social!

Is your LinkedIn profile 100% complete? Are you an “All-Star” or at least an “Expert”? If someone Googles your name, your LinkedIn profile usually comes up in the top 3 search results. And remember, you only have one chance to make a good first impression!

You Need to Know How to Establish Your Brand in Social Media
Having a LinkedIn profile without your picture is like going to a networking event with a paper bag over your head.

Just like you wouldn’t go to a networking event with a paper bag over your head – your online image is just as important. You don’t want fuzzy graphics or logos that are cut-off.

An incomplete social media profile is like having a sloppy lobby!

Branding should be consistent on all the social networks. They are like extensions of your website. People should know in seconds what you do and what you have to offer.

The average person has an attention span of 7 seconds.

Google indexes all the social media profiles – both personal and business.

Social Media is Here to Stay

It’s no joke. Yes, it could be fun and entertaining and annoying at times, but if you know how to work it properly, it can be a very effective marketing tool.

The key is to clearly identify your target market(s) and figure out which networks they use the most.

Though you should have a presence in the major ones: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn, not everyone has to be on Pinterest, Snapchat or Instagram. It all depends on who you want to reach.

If you’re more B2C (Business to Consumer), you should be mastering Facebook, Pinterest and maybe Instagram. If you’re trying to reach the younger generation (12-24), you should check out Snapchat. B2B (Business to Business) – focus on LinkedIn and Facebook. If you want to drive traffic to your website (and who doesn’t), then you can automate content to Twitter and Google+.

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media WizGiselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing specialist & trainer helping business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. She’s the official social media, newsletter and blog manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and teaches once a month at SCORE. Join her on Wednesdays with the Wiz on Facebook Live at 4 pm MST every Wednesday.

 

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16 May

Getting the Best Results from LinkedIn

Practically everyone knows about LinkedIn now, but not everyone uses it well or even at all.

Why? Hearing how it works is one thing; most of us learn by doing. Right?

There are a few main aspect of how and why LinkedIn is important. Business owners use it to find competitors, customers, employees or even suppliers and vendors. Others looking for contracts or jobs explore the range of opportunities LinkedIn offers through their services. Salespeople now find LinkedIn to be a resource to garner glimpses of companies and potential leads for their products and/or services.

Let’s focus on Business Owners. Many features of LinkedIn cross over, the importance of personal profiles, business pages and even showcase pages can be key features in building your business. LinkedIn has become one of the world’s most respected business and professional resources. Most often when you have a question about a person or company where do you go? Google, right?

Google yourself and/or your company. Do you do that often to see what shows up? If you are on LinkedIn and don’t have a personal website or have your company website set up with appropriate SEO features, then more than likely you will notice your LinkedIn profile as being in the top Google results. That should be enough to cause panic. Relax, it just means that you need to develop great profiles.

When you look at your profile status, is it All-Star quality? What does that mean? It means your profile meets the professional standards LinkedIn requires for the best opportunities for you. The better you fit in, the more you can stand out. It’s like learning the rules before figuring out how to bend or break them. Of course, you may possibly not even know them.

What if you did? Would you be more attractive to potential customers? You look for it in others, right?

SCORE presents many opportunities for business owners to learn and practice important business development features. This LinkedIn workshop goes a little deeper with a hands-on practice of the material being presented. Facilitating that kind of environment can be a little challenging, so the class size is limited. You’ll also get a copy of the workbook being used.

Join us! Sign up for this hands-on session, – at SCORE Tuesday, May 24 from 12 – 4pm, before it fills up. Bring your laptop and jump in, explore – get your questions answered. Click here to register!

Smartphones are discouraged. Tablets might work if you have a keypad.

ZenBenefielAbout the Author:

Zen Benefiel is an accomplished author, coach, facilitator and speaker with Masters degrees from the University of Phoenix in Business Administration and Organizational Development. Zen is a blogger, social media expert, trainer and web developer since 2000 with a collection of works at www.zenbenefiel.com. Zen is also co-host of 2 Small Biz Guys talk radio show on Star Worldwide Networks.

 

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12 Steps to Creating an Inspiring Strategic Plan 9 May

12 Steps to Creating an Inspiring Strategic Plan (Part 1 of 2)

Energize and engage your employees with an inspiring strategic planning process the helps everyone get clear, get organized, get going, and get results. That’s what successful businesses do.12 Steps to Creating an Inspiring Strategic Plan

Here are the first 6 of 12 steps of the strategic planning process cycle that, done right, tends to amplify and accelerate the success of any organization:

Plan to Plan…

  1.  Set the Right Energy –It all begins with “planning to plan” (the invisible 12th step) which lays the foundation for a successful strategic planning process. Before you take the first step, it is crucial to select the right facilitator, design the right process, send the right message, and create the right atmosphere that resonates with your organization’s culture.

Get Clear…

  1.  See Where You Are –Many leaders are trying to run their organizations with “flat spots” that decrease productivity, produce inefficiencies, and impede growth. A strategic plan is vital for any start-up or seasoned business. It is like a trail map and compass for hiking in the wilderness. But to begin any journey, you first need to know where you are.
  1.  Remember Your ‘Big Why?’ –Knowing your core purpose keeps you centered on what’s most important—during good times and challenging times. The purpose of your organization is like the seed of an apple. No one knows the potential yield of your organization and how much can be produced in the lifetime of your company.
  1.  Infuse Your Culture –Values are your guide for weathering ethical dilemmas. They become the fabric for weaving good sound decisions. Values should be at the core of all the decisions employees make. They show what your company stands for.
  1.  Know Your Business –Clearly defining your mission helps you know what opportunities to say “yes” to and which to say “no” to. Once you have created your mission statement, you will have defined the limits of what you will focus on as an organization. W. Clement Stone said “When you discover your mission, you will feel its demand. It will fill you with enthusiasm and a burning desire to get to work on it.”
  1.  Envision Your Future –When you create a clear vision, it expands the collective thinking of your organization to encompass greater possibility and influence. A lofty vision is energizing. It excites everyone involved. It generates hope for the future. Walt Disney said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.”

Ray Madaghiele is Chief Inspiration Officer at Business Energizers, a division of TLC, an organizational and human excellence company.

On May 26, 2016, Ray will be facilitating a powerful SCORE workshop titled “A Strategic Planning Process that Energizes your Business” where he will teach how to engage your employees in this 12-step process. Register and learn more here.

About the author: Ray Madaghiele

Ray MadaghieleRay Madaghiele is the author of the book Energize Your Business: Engage Your Employees with an Inspiring Strategic Planning Process. Learn more or purchase at www.EnergizeYourBusiness.biz . Ray is donating 10% of profits from book sales to the SCORE Foundation.

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It's not who you know it's who your friends know 26 Apr

It’s Not Who You Know, it’s Who Your Friends Know

Who are your Friends? Remember the “6 Degrees of Separation”? Supposedly, “any two people on Earth are six or fewer acquaintance links apart.” (Wikipedia)

Social Media Friends - Networking on SteroidsNow, with social media – Networking on Steroids – it’s more like 3.5.

If you want to meet someone, let’s say an influencer in your field —

  • someone that you’re target market looks up to
  • someone with a huge following
  • someone that if they liked you, your service or your product and they shared it with their friends, you’d be set

How do you meet that person? More than likely they’re part of your LinkedIn network.

2 people join LinkedIn every second

linkedLinkedIn Mystery PersonIt’s easy enough to connect with them, but if they viewed your LinkedIn profile right now, would they be impressed? Would that person think that you were an expert in your field?

Or does your LinkedIn profile look like you’re looking for a job rather than owning your own company? It makes a difference. Or are you one of many Mystery People who don’t have a professional looking head shot.

You are your BRAND.

If you own your own company, on LinkedIn, you are an employee of that company. A company cannot have personal profile. A company gets a company profile and that’s how they’re indexed. If someone is searching for you, they can narrow the search by company or person. If you’re not in the right category, you won’t come up. (By the way, if someone Googles you or your company name, LinkedIn profiles are usually in the top 3 search results.)

This is Networking

You don’t join a chamber of commerce to sell your products. Well, yes, that is the ultimate goal, but the person you’re sitting next to at the lunch probably doesn’t want or need your product or service. HOWEVER, they may know someone who does.

You don’t know who they know. You don’t know who their clients are or their neighbors or family members. The more you get out there and are visible, the more you’ll be known for what you do. Every time you publish and article (post) on LinkedIn, you solidify your credibility all the more. Every time you share some useful information to a group you get noticed.

It’s See and be Seen

You want to become an influencer, a newsmaker, be known as the expert. LinkedIn can help, if you learn how to use the tool properly and effectively.

 

About the Author:

Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media WizGiselle Aguiar, founder of AZ Social Media Wiz is a social media, inbound and content marketing strategist & trainer helping business owners learn how to leverage the power of social media marketing, increase traffic to their websites, generate leads, increase brand awareness and establish themselves as experts in their fields. She’s the official social media, newsletter and blog manager for Greater Phoenix SCORE and offers Social media classes at the new AZ Social Media Training Center. 602-738-1700. You can connect with Giselle online at LinkedIn or on Google+.

 

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