Tag: social media

Should your small business use Snapchat? 21 Mar

Should your small business use Snapchat?

As a millennial, I use Snapchat on a regularly — OK, hourly — basis (if I’m not sleeping). It’s a tool that allows me to keep in touch with my friends. Not in the “here are all the great things I’m doing” (cough cough) Facebook way, but in the “I just ran into a glass door, here’s my welt” way. I drop my social media guard and send snaps to my friends, no matter how great or bad I look. Like many Snapchat users, I feel like the more real the snap, the better.Trying to reach millennials? Maybe Snapchat is where you need to be.

It’s Snapchat’s gritty, in-the-moment appeal that’s taken my generation by storm. And if you want your business to reach us, you might think Snapchat is a great way to do it.

Maybe not. Here’s why:

It’s tough to target potential customers. You have to find users through your contacts or by knowing their exact Snapchat handle (username).

It’s populated by a younger crowd. Data shows that 71 percent of users are younger than 34, with 45 percent between the ages of 18 and 24. If your business caters to this demographic and you can come up with a creative way to appeal to them via Snapchat, awesome. Most small businesses won’t find it worth the time, however.

It works best for lifestyle or personal brands. That’s just the nature of Snapchat.

My recommendation? Focus on the social media platforms where more of your target customers spend their time. But if you’re still curious about Snapchat, here are some tips.

Be playful with your Snap stories

You want your snaps to stand out in the crowd. Make sure that they are funny, relevant and a have a flash of flare. You can use the face-centric filters in unique ways to amplify your brand. Throw a puppy face filter on yourself or one of your staff members. You can draw on snaps, too — feel free to write messages to your followers and draw pictures to spice them up.

Interact with your followers

Brands often make a huge mistake with social media: they use it as a broadcasting tool instead of an interaction tool. It’s all about engagement.  Take the time to respond to followers’ snaps. Hold behind-the-scenes events for your biz that help answer people’s questions. You can even host “secret” promotions by rewarding followers who respond to special codes you share in your snaps.

Add to community stories

Snapchat has a “my story” function that broadcasts snaps to your entire following. It also has a feature where you can add to community stories. You can see these as “My Campus Story” or more event-centric stories like the Grammys. Adding content to these stories can help you reach a broader audience.

Feel like small businesses should be on Snapchat? Feel free to tweet me.

About the Author:

Jillian Johnson, GoDaddyJillian Johnson is a social media specialist at GoDaddy. She’s committed to contributing bold and innovative ideas for sharing brand and personal narratives online, and believes that a carefully crafted digital identity can be a game-changer for both businesses and individuals. In Jillian’s world, there’s a GIF for every emotion and a dance battle is the best way to settle a conflict. In her spare time, she is exploring Seattle, one local spot at a time.

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Benefits of Blogging 24 Feb

The Benefits of Blogging [Infographic]

Blogging has been around since the ’90s, however, in today’s digital world, blogging has become an integral part of a company’s marketing strategy. Here are just some of the Benefits of Blogging:

  1. Blogs influence purchases
  2. Google likes to index blog pages
  3. Articles with images get more views
  4. The more often you blog, the more traffic you drive to your website, the more leads you generate. (3x a week is the charm!)

This infographic from SearhGroup.com.au illustrates the Benefits of Blogging:

The Benefits of Blogging

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How to deal with social media trolls 11 Jan

How to Deal with Social Media Trolls

Your mother always told you, “If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” If only the Internet had listened to your mom. Today, those with nothing nice to say are very busy on the Internet. We call them trolls (basically, online troublemakers).

And while the benefits of maintaining a social media presence are numerous and well documented, there is a potential downside: What happens if you find your Facebook, Yelp or Twitter page assailed by a troll?

The Internet has granted everybody a voice, and as such, the exposure social media grants can be a double-edged sword. While you get to share in all of your successes, anybody who feels wronged by your business will have a platform to voice their concerns as well. In some cases, this can be a healthy process for feedback. Sometimes people are just out to start a fuss. So how do you tell the difference, and what do you do if you find someone trying to rouse rabble on your social media pages?

  1. Don’t respond to everyone.

The first and most important thing you need to understand is that not every comment or negative review merits a response. You can’t please everybody, and you can’t control certain circumstances. Even the most successful businesses have critics, and that is never going to change.

Your business is your pride and joy, but try not to take discouraging remarks too personally. 

How to deal with social media trollsAnd remember that in some cases, social media is a legitimate avenue for feedback. These posts, reviews and comments are coming directly from your customers’ mouths, and the more sensible criticisms can be gleaned for advice toward improvement.

  1. Stay focused.

While you are logged in, stay focused. You may have the power to change the world, but your business’s FourSquare page is not the place to start a movement. Nor is it the place to express or engage in personal or political beliefs. You are here to represent your business and keep your customers informed. Don’t let an unhappy spammer draw you into something unrelated.

If you do directly interact with a critic or troll, make sure you stay professional. This is your business, and the Internet is a very public place, so put your best foot forward. Gordon Ramsay may be famous for humiliating people, but you are not Gordon Ramsay. Remember to use correct spelling, and don’t engage in sensitive or potentially offensive topics.

  1. Try to move the conversation.

Do your best to move the conversation to a more private place. Request that the customer send you an email so you can converse directly about their grievance. This allows you to add a personal touch to your customer service and directly address any issues without airing any dirty laundry. It could also prevent personal information from being shared by either party, which could be important depending on the nature of your business.

  1. Sometimes you have to deal with a troll.

Of course, some people are downright mean for little reason. It is best that these people be ignored if at all possible. Avoid an argument or debate in a public forum, especially if it is over something trivial like the price of a cup of coffee.

If you find someone actively “trolling” your page and harassing you or your customers, the best thing you can do is to block them and apologize for the inconvenience to your other viewers. Serious threats to you or your business should be treated the same way you would treat in-person threats: Report them immediately.
Keep in mind that there is such a thing as bad PR, and that affects your livelihood. So, knowing how to tell a rotten egg from a legitimate complaint is important, as is knowing when to ignore these complaints and how to best handle them. And the upsides of social media marketing will likely outweigh the downside of dealing with a few pesky troll

About the Author

Eirk WongErik Wong is a small business/tech consultant for GoDaddy and a freelance pop-culture writer. He has written a regular column for a current events blog, and his commentary has been featured on realclearpolitics.com. Connect with Erik on Google+. The world’s largest domain name registrar and Web hosting provider, GoDaddy gives small business owners the tools to name their idea, build a beautiful online presence, attract customers and manage their business. To get more tips for your small business—including articles, videos and webinars—check out the GoDaddy Training Hub.

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What's your competition doing online? 4 Jan

What’s Your Competition Doing Online?

Most every business has competition.

It’s up to you to keep up with what your competition is doing and today’s technology makes it easy to do that without their knowing it! Here are some tips and tools to help you keep tabs on your competitors.

  • Google Search – put yourself in your target market shoes and enter in the search box – not your company name – but the keyword or phrase that they would enter. (Like “auto repair Phoenix”.) Who comes up first in organic search (not paid)? If it’s not your business, you have to address this. (Related: An SEO Tale of Two Auto Repair Shops). What are they doing that you’re not?
  • Feedly.com – Feedly is your online newsstand. You can subscribe to your competitors’ blogs to see how often they’re blogging and what they’re blogging about. Is it good material? Is it well-written?
  • Facebook: Once you have 100 likes on Facebook, you can add “Pages to Watch” in your “Insights”. Here you can see how many new likes a competitor’s gotten, how many they have all together, how many posts in any given week and the engagement.What's your competition doing online?
  • Twitter: Create a “private” list of your competitors, then add a column in TweetDeck to monitor their tweets. How often are they tweeting? What are they sharing? Is it all about them or do they share other people’s content?
  • LinkedIn: Follow someone without connecting to them. Not many people know that you can do this. You can see the updates. Same thing – what are they sharing?

Here are some things you don’t want to do if you want to stay incognito to them:

  • Like their page on Facebook, add them to a circle in Google+, or add them to a public list on Twitter – they will be notified.
  • View their profile on LinkedIn too many times. Yes, you have do it once to follow them, but that’s it. People are notified when someone views their profile. And no, you don’t want to keep your identity private. You do want potential clients an referral sources to find you.
  • Subscribe to their blog or newsletter via email.

Coming up first in organic Google search is critical. Paid advertisements get ignored. You can come out on top if you incorporate:

  • Proper search engine optimization on your website
  • Blogging 3 times a week
  • Posting regularly on the major social networks

You CAN learn how to do this! Check out my classes — SEO, Using LinkedIn and Learn How to Blog at Greater Phoenix SCORE.

About the Author, Giselle Aguiar, AZ Social Media Wiz

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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Take Social Media Seriously in 2016 9 Dec

Take Social Media Seriously in 2016

If you thought that social media and digital marketing were a fad when you first heard about it, I certainly hope that you now realize that social media is not going away and everything is going digital.Social Media is here to stay. Resistance is Futile!

Resistance is Futile

Remember the Borg? OK, that’s something sci-fi fans will recognize from Star Trek the Next Generation. Their line:

You will be assimilated.
Resistance is futile.

Well, digital marketing is similar. If you don’t assimilate it into your business, you are going to be left behind in the dust. Resistance is futile and very unwise.

So what do you have to do to take your business to the next level in 2016? Make a decision. And it all stems around your budget. Now’s the time when you should be thinking about your business plan and budget for 2016 – so it’s vital that you include social media marketing as part of your marketing plan.

There’s two ways you can approach this.

Hire someone to do it for you or learn how to do it yourself.

If you want to hire someone to do it for you, your choices are contracting with a social media services company or an ad agency. This takes a hefty budget. Depending on their experience, anyone worth their salt charges from $500 – $2500 a month depending on what needs to be done.

The other option is hire someone to do it in-house. Here you have to factor:

  • Education – has this person been trained how to properly and effectively market on social media and by whom?
  • Experience – how long have they been on social media? Just because they are young and know how to post on Facebook and Instagram doesn’t mean they know how to market on social media.
  • Time – are they going to be full-time or part-time? If part-time, do they have another job that may be conflicting? If full-time, take into consideration salary, benefits, etc.

Yet another option is to train one of your current staff members on to marketing properly on social media. This person should be creative, somewhat tech-savvy and eager to learn. Think about how he or she is going to incorporate their current tasks and social media along with blogging 2-3 times a week. You can also rally a team of different people with various skills which would require a comprehensive strategic and tactical plan and someone to be the leader.

OR you can learn how to do all the social media yourself. Here you’ll have to carve out the time to:

  1. Take classes to learn how it all works and how to do research, planning and analytics as well as when, where and what to post on which networks.
  2. Do research to get to know your target market, find out which networks they frequent and what their interests are.
  3. Learn the culture and lingo of each of the major networks.
  4. Learn how to use the tools to curate content, schedule out posts, blog and monitor your social messages.
  5. Analyze your efforts each month to see what’s working and what’s not working, if you met your goals and to plan for the next month.

It’s your choice, but you cannot afford to ignore it any longer. Why?

  1. No one is going to find you on Google search
  2. Your competition is going to beat you out
  3. No one is going to know you exist

What do you want to do next? Not sure? It wouldn’t hurt to talk to a SCORE mentor – especially when it comes to budget/cash flow, business & marketing planning. Click here to schedule a free mentoring session.

I’ll also be happy to give you a free 30-minute phone consultation and analysis of your current efforts. Click here to schedule yours.

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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