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5 Actionable Digital Marketing Resolutions For 2015

As we wrap up 2014, now is a prime time to look back at what successes we’ve had at work and where we may have room for improvement.  Many business leaders are projecting the next year’s potential growth along with strategies to increase business development.  While there are many known general methods to market a business, here is a list of 5 very specific actions you MUST take to stay ahead of the curve in 2015.

5 Specific Marketing Action Steps to Take in 2015:

marketing trends 20151. Use Facebook “custom audiences” for ads. Facebook has recently launched a new way to target your ads to your current contact lists.  You can import emails or phone numbers in the audience tab in ‘ads manager’.  Then when you create the ad, you can choose that custom group to show it to. 

Why it works: With Facebook targeting options you can narrow your ads even more by age, location, and interests.  This will increase click-through’s substantially as well as provide you with more options such as Facebook offers, deals and more to present to your interested lists that you could not otherwise through email. 

2. Build your personal brand on LinkedIn. Since rolling out the ability to post blogs and articles directly on the LinkedIn platform, many savvy leaders have begun to leverage their knowledge and expertise to further their personal and business brand awareness. Make sure your profile is updated and start planning the types of posts you can contribute on the largest business networking social media site. 

Why it works: When you post quality content on LinkedIn, you position yourself as a thought leader in your industry and build yourself a positive reputation with potential customers or referral sources.

3. Get on Google My Business. Google+ has been slowly creeping up on Facebook as the second largest social networking site since it launched in 2011. Google provides you with the platform to create a personal identity along with a business page, locations for your company and it all gets tied together under Google My Business.

Why it works: Having all these elements updated and posting relevant information to your page can actually help you rank higher!

4. Brand your visuals for Pinterest. Pinterest currently has 70 million users and that number is growing by the minute. People pin articles, blogs, websites, recipes, shopping, lifestyle dreams and work ideas onto their boards, and the one thing they see when searching the site is the visual associated with the content. Make sure that each piece of collateral you produce is branded well and also includes a quick catchy title.

Why it works: By placing your logo on all your visuals, you are expanding your reach to each and every person that searches for that topic on Pinterest.  When you place a CTA title on the visual, it will increase the clicks and provide viewers with a sense of motivation to read more.

5. Re-purpose your blogs. Pick 5 of your most popular 2014 blogs and expand on them.  Take those blogs and create a “part 2” for each. Or turn one into into a whitepaper or e-book. 

Why it works: By re-purposing your successful content that you already know is popular, highly searched for and engageable, you can collect leads and take potential customers further down your funnel.

2015 will bring us many new opportunities to build our audiences and see marketing success.  Which of these actions do you plan to implement into your strategy?

 

Facebook Updates Its Posting Preferences For Pages

If you manage a business page on Facebook, your life just got easier!

Facebook has officially rolled out a new posting feature which allows admins to effortlessly elect if he/she wants to post as the page or as him/herself through a more straightforward means.  Way back in the day (yesterday), in order to toggle between the two identities, one had to click on the settings in the upper right hand corner of the whole page and change who you wanted to post as.   This was a confusing process for many page managers.

Where to find the new posting settings:

Now, each and every page post has its own spot where you can click and choose if you want to post, comment, share or like as yourself or as your page. You can also choose to comment, like or share as any other page you currently manage.  See visual below for reference:

Facebook post preference

Ways to utilize the new Facebook posting preferences to your benefit:

  1. You can create momentum on your page posts a lot faster. You can now easily write a post as the page, and quickly switch to your own persona to comment on said post.
  2. You can connect pages you manage. If you are running multiple Facebook pages for industry related businesses, why not increase both company’s exposure and engagement by commenting on one’s post under the name of the other?  This is a sure way to increase the likes of both pages!
  3. You can comment on posts of pages you do not manage- as any of your pages! Go ahead and bring exposure to your page by posting effortlessly on bigger brands! All you have to do is click on the little gray page flag in the upper right corner of the post and choose the page you want to comment, like or share as. See below for an example.

coca cola facebook page

Follow Pop Digital Marketing on Facebook for more tips!

4 Wedding Traditions to use in your everyday Social Media Strategy

wedding traditions and social mediaWe have all heard of the wedding day traditions for wearing something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue.  Originating from an old English rhyme, the 4 items a bride carries with her is supposed to bring her good luck.  Transitioning into today’s digital age, we can actually leverage these 4 elements as a means of remembering some best practice strategies for top notch social media posts!

Post Something Old:

For the bride, something old represents continuity. Psychologically, people prefer to see social media posts they are comfortable with and they can relate to from their past.  This creates a sense of safeness.  This explains why so many people love the “Throw Back Thursday” picture phenomenon. A great tip: post something exciting about an employee that has been with the company from the beginning to give your prospects a sense of your company’s stability.

Post Something New:

For the bride, something new offers optimism for the future.  One the social media spectrum, posting something new positions your company as the thought leaders.  When you are the first to post the latest events, products or news in your industry, it is your post that will get widely shared, commented on and “liked”.  Furthermore, when you are posting about your company’s news and updates, you are demonstrating your company’s ability to provide top service or products by exposing its growth.

Post Something Borrowed:

For the bride, something borrowed symbolizes borrowed happiness.  When it comes to social media, you too should be borrowing happiness and success.  There is no need to re-invent the wheel.  When you see another company’s digital marketing campaigns working well, borrow their strategy! While it’s always ideal to be the first, it may not always be practical.  It is better to be on the right bus, even if you aren’t driving, than to not get on it at all.  Tip: borrow a post but put your own unique spin on it by adding a call to action or a different opinion!

Post Something Blue:

For the bride, something blue stands for purity, love and fidelity.  In social media we know that when a customer loves a post they become passionate to spread it.  Every once in a while, post something controversial to incite engagement.   Nothing attracts more shares and comments then the posts that hit a nerve, good or bad with followers!

Use these 4 tactics in your social media strategy to ascertain your commitment to your followers and with time they will say ‘I Do’ to your services!

Why your Company Needs a Weekly Tip on Social Media | 4 How-To Guided Steps

One of the first pieces of advice I give to new clients looking to increase engagement on Social Media is to create a monthly content strategy plan.  Part of that plan involves creating a weekly tip to offer followers and fans.

The benefits of providing a weekly tip for followers include:

  • Content Manager HiringPositioning your business or brand as a thought leader.
  • Opening up dialogue for customers who may have questions about that topic.
  • Building trust with your followers and showing your expertise.
  • Learning what subjects your customers find popular through shares and likes and then turning them into blogs or e-books.
  • Increasing visibility on that subject with search engines (as they crawl and show public status updates with keywords relevant to search terms).
  • Keeping followers and fans coming back to your company page in anticipation for that weeks tip.  This will in turn increase your post updates showing up in their feed.

4 tips to sharing tips on Social Media: 

  1. Pick a day of the week when your audience is likely online.  You can see when they are online through Facebook insights, or timing + (which measures your google + fan activity).
  2. Create an editorial calendar 6 months out (which is only 24 tips).  Create a spreadsheet and include the month, date and time you plan on posting the tips.  Add fields for topic, subject and content developer (if you have multiple experts in your company that will be contributing).  Then add the field where the actual tip content belongs.  The tip itself should be 2-3 sentences at most.
  3. Hashtag your tip name. Prior to launching your tip strategy come up with a clever name that you can place at the beginning of each tip post.  Examples are “Monday Marketing Tip” or “Tuesday Tips With Jon” or “Fridays Health Tips”.  Keep it brand and industry appropriate and make sure it is relevant to what your customers would expect to see from you.  Then Hashtag it so people can eventually search for and see all the previous tips by clicking on the hashtag. Example: #SocialMediaWeeklyTip.

     

  4. Create a visual of the tip.  Hubspot launched a very successful 30 day blogging tip in which each day they provided a visual of a tip dealing with blogging.  When you post a picture on any Social Media platform you increase the likelihood of the post getting shared and liked.  You can also share the tip picture on Instagram and Pinterest!

For advice on launching or re-launching your company’s social media strategy, contact us here.

2 New Facebook Updates for Businesses and Pages

Facebook has recently made 2 updates that will shake up how you use the Social Networking platform to market your business.  And, if strategized correctly, you will see a positive outcome from both these changes!

Change #1 | Facebook Page Manager Tracking

On February 20, 2014, Facebook introduced a new feature to allow Page Administrators to see which of their page managers posted a status update.  The update shows under the company name of each post ( see visual below).  All admins of the page including moderators, advertisers and insight analysts will see the name of the poster next to the update.  It is not visible to the public.

Facebook Manager Posts

 

 

Benefits of Tracking Facebook Mangers’ Posts:

For companies that have multiple managers or content creators on their business page this will help with tracking, metrics and success measurements of each employee. 

  • You can now track whose content generates the most likes, shares or comments and provide incentives or bonuses based on performance.
  • You can utilize this information when training social media interns or entry level employees as a means of providing constructive criticism and suggestions.
  • If you outsource your social media to freelancers or a marketing company, you will gain better insight as to who is doing what and when.
  • It is an overall means of holding all your digital marketing employees accountable.


Change #2 | Tagging Another Page In A Status:

On February 25, 2014, Facebook began rolling out a new algorithm for page status updates.  Going forward, if your page writes a post and tags another page in that post, your post may been shown to the followers of that tagged page.  It is worth noting, however that Facebook will only show the posts that are relevant to followers with a history of interacting with that correlated content.

Benefits of Tagging Another Page in your Page Status Update:

  • Exposure to the followers of the tagged page, which may have thousands of more fans than yours.
  • Creating a give/take relationship with the other brands/pages that have the same target audience.  For example, when you tag another page, you are giving them exposure to your fans.  Hopefully, they will want to “give back” and promote you as well!

7 Beginner Tips For LinkedIn Marketing

LinkedIn, known as the “Social Network for Businesses” has immense potential to provide users with the ability to network with-in their own industry and more importantly find and convert customers.  As opposed to Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter, where statuses lean towards the light, funny or more personal, LinkedIn offers users with a platform to encompass strictly business updates and news related statuses.

7 Beginner Tips to Marketing on LinkedIn:

  1. Update your profile, oftenFirst, make sure your personal LinkedIn profile is completely updated.  LinkedIn even tells users how well their profile is performing (see picture below).  Your profile is the driving force behind how you will be viewed by potential customers, job seekers, employers or possible partners.  It’s also wise to spruce up your profile once every few months.  Every time you update your profile, your connections or network (depending on what your privacy settings are set to), will see it in their feed, making updating a great “exposure tool”. LinkedIn Profile Marketing
  2. Setting up a company page. LinkedIn is regularly changing the way company pages operate.  Make sure you stay on top of the trends and that you have an updated company page.  Here are some quick tips:
    1. Keep your company description written in a style that reads well to customers.
    2. Link to your website.
    3. Make sure to utilize the services and products aspects of the page.
    4. Create a strategy for the types of updates you post on the page vs. your profile.
    5. Post jobs on the company page, and share that in all your groups, resulting in driving traffic to the company page.
    6. Encourage your employees to update their profile linking to the page and to share any page or job openings.
  3. Update your status with relevant information. By providing your connections with the latest news, updates and blogs in your industry you are positioning yourself as a thought leader in your field.  As with updates on other social media platforms, keep your statuses “engage-able”. 
  4. Join groups.  There are two types of groups you may want to join on LinkedIn.
    1. Groups of professionals in your industry.  Doing so, will enable you to share ideas, network, cross refer and hopefully give you a chance to learn from one another.
    2. Groups of customers.  Ideally you have done appropriate research on who your target client is.  Find the groups that your customers are in and get your name out there!
  5. Get Recommendations.  There is something to be said about the phrase “give a little, get a lot”.  Take time to truly recommend a co-worker, employee, client or consultant.  By giving your honest positive feedback, that person will likely recommend you in return.  When a potential client comes to your public profile (and yes, they will check you out on LinkedIn before agreeing to do business) and sees you have many positive recommendations, it will compel that client to trust your expertise even more.
  6. LinkedIn ads.  If you have a specific campaign to market, and the budget to allot for it, LinkedIn ads may be beneficial for you.  LinkedIn ads allows you to sponsor updates, target demographics and even use videos.  Make sure to consult with an expert first to get the best ROI.
  7. Look at someone’s profile to get them to look at yours.  It seems borderline stalker, but it works.  If you want someone to see your profile or notice you, simply look at his/her profile.  He/she will get notification that you looked at his/her profile, and it will prompt that person to check out what’s new with you, which is why it’s important to routinely change up your profile.

 Click here to benefit from an expert’s direction on your LinkedIn strategy.

New Trending Feature On Facebook

Facebook is rolling out a new feature titled “Trending” (currently only in a few countries and only available for certain users) on the right side of your homepage.

Trending According to Facebook: 

“Trending shows you the popular topics and hashtags that are being talked about on Facebook. You’ll see stories from people and Pages who’ve shared them with you or have shared them as Public. From the right side of your homepage, click a topic that’s trending to see what people are saying about it.”

Facebook Trending Feature

How The Trending Feature Can Increase Your Business And Brand Awareness:

Up until now, using hashtags was not something that proved to be effective for businesses.   A Social Media Examiner article from October 2013 explains:

“According to EdgeRank Checker, Facebook hashtags have done nothing to help with additional exposure for your brand. In fact the opposite is true.
The research indicates that posts with hashtags are not only less likely to go viral, but also make people less likely to engage with the content.”

Now however, Facebook is using popular hashtags, personal preferences, user engagements and user “likes” to decide what they display in that user’s trending column.  This means it is very important for your Facebook strategy to now include trendy hashtags to increase your exposure.  When a user clicks on a “trending” keyword, they will see all posts about said keyword.  You want your posts in there!

3 Tips To Using Hashtags On Your Business Page:

  1. Find an already popular industry related hashtag and use it in your post.
  2. Create an amazing hashtag unique to your business and ask your best fans to use it as well in related content posts.  As an example: ask fans a question and tell them to use the hashtag in their answer.
  3. Use a well known celebrity name, something big in the news or an upcoming popular event.  It’s already trending, the work is done all you have to do now is incorporate it into your posts!

5 Reasons why your Facebook Posts Create Awkward Silences

It goes like this: You think you’ve created something that will go viral.  You post it and wait….and wait…..and wait.  30 minutes go by and there is still no comment, “like” or share at all.

Here are 5 reasons why your Facebook posts may not get the reaction (or any reaction) your were hoping for:Awkward Facebook Posts

  1. You ask yes or no questions.  You have to give people the opportunity to express themselves.  If you are asking a question with an obvious answer or one that doesn’t require much thought, you won’t generate much response.   Ask open ended questions, and give your followers the chance to share their full thoughts!
  2. You are posting yesterday’s news. It’s nice to share the viral video that everyone is talking about.  Guess what though: if everyone has already seen it, they will scroll over your post.  Of course, it doesn’t hurt to share, but it’s even better to be one of the first pages releasing it!  Tip: when you first wake up, peruse your industry news and post on your page the top story/video/picture.  Be the thought LEADER… not follower.
  3. You post the same things over and over again.  So many pages do this.  They love to promote a specific E-Book, product or service and they keep posting about it.  Think about meeting someone and, after that first time, every time you see them they tell the same story.  You will start avoiding them.  That is exactly what will happen to your page posts.  People will hide them, ignore them and because of the Facebook algorithm, they will eventually stop seeing your posts altogether on their feed.
  4. You are boring.  Post something funny, exciting, provocative, scary, visual or even confrontational.  Switch up your tone every once in a while.  Some of the most interactive posts are the ones that drive emotion (good and bad) from followers.
  5. You are self absorbed.  The best way to get people to share your post is if it’s about them.  Not you or your business.  Don’t just concentrate on your services, concentrate on your followers.  Follow the 20/80 rule.  80% of your posts should be industry or client related and 20% should focus on your business.

Click here to talk with our experts on how you can take your facebook marketing to the next level!

Word of Mouth Marketing; Then and Now

word of mouth marketing

It was only a few years ago when the term “Word of Mouth” was interpreted literally: Person A heard about Product or Service directly from Person B’s mouth.  Through the past few years, it has taken on a completely new meaning as communication on a whole between people has drastically changed.

Many businesses, primarily small-medium sized ones were built on and sustained by customer recommendations and through the “old word of mouth method”.  As technology expands, our communication skills among people, customers, families and friends has adapted as well.  Many schools have lessened curriculum on cursive writing, and increased curricula surrounding computer skills and even teaching coding and social media.  People now share life history, pictures, and personal stories through social media, texts and emails.  When someone is looking for a suggestion of a doctor, service or product, they crowd-source online.

So how do we utilize this relatively new way of communication and still hold on to our word of mouth marketing strategy?

5 Ways to Increase your Word of Mouth Online Marketing Success:

  1. Generate likes on your products, services and pages.  Make sure your website is optimized with social media buttons.  While in the past, people verbally told their friends they liked something, now people are share their preferences through “likes” and clicks.  When one person “likes” a website, Facebook business page, LinkedIn update etc. all of their followers are potentially exposed to seeing that “like”.  Just as with the traditional word of mouth, this new way is powerful in that people “trust” what their friends share and like online.
  2. Solicit Positive Reviews.  Set up your company YELP, Google Maps, Facebook and LinkedIn pages and encourage your happy customers to write a short review about why they come to you.  These reviews are magnificent in that they are always available (24/7!) and can be found by just about anyone looking for information on your company.
  3. Watch your “company” with Google Alerts.  Strategically outline important Brand and Industry keywords and sign up for notifications whenever those keywords are mentioned online.  Then, JOIN THE CONVERSATION.  If someone is searching in an online group for a product or service you sell, Google Alerts will let you know so you may answer them in that group in real time.
  4. Become the thought leader in your industry.  The more you position yourself as the expert, the higher the likelihood people will recommend you to others for that service.  If you are blogging all the time about a specific subject, you will be seen as the professional, even if that reader has never used you before.  When people read your blogs, watch your videos, see your tweets and posts about industry related services or products, they begin to respect and TRUST your knowledge.  They then feel comfortable recommending you to others as that expert!
  5. Find influential people in your target industry.  This one takes a bit more research work, but there are always tweeters, bloggers and facebookers who love to write about YOUR product and industry.  They have tons followers who already trust them, and they can become a very strong ally when it comes to recommending your services.  Find them, befriend them and join forces to create an equally beneficial partnership!