Updates social media top six

A few years ago-three to be exact- the top four social media tools for business were

  1. Forums
  2. YouTube
  3. Blogs
  4. Facebook

Today that has changed according to many social media studies.

  1. Facebook
  2. Twitter
  3. LinkedIN
  4. Blogs
  5. YouTube

The purposes for social media often are to increase awareness and exposure of the company and generate those leads. Social Media Examiner provides excellent up-to-date research and tips on improving content, traffic and more.

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100 “Likes”, Barely 10 reads, Let alone 1 action

From the Progressive Libertarianism Facebook page

Facebook can be an extraordinary market place for businesses, as other social media outlets can be. Blogger Dan Herr shares a story about a landscaper getting $150k worth of business from a viral posting in ONE day.

It takes time to develop that list of friends. Make sure you drive traffic to the social media which in turn should drive traffic to your website with awesome content.

It takes time to get people to move from voyeur to activist.

Jakob Nielsen, shared from Bernard Warner on Social Media Intelligence

It’s easy to get “likes”. Much more difficult to get people to take action-like sharing a link, let alone actually leaving the computer and going to volunteer.

Just means you need to know what you want from your audience and where you reach them to do that. Activists for campaigns don’t come from social media. Online shoppers might.

Clever contest by Zoya

Zoya, a toxin free nail polish, held a contest last month I thought was a particularly clever use of Pinterest. (The Contest is over, so don’t try to win now). I love Zoya for my pedicures (too much gardening to keep a manicure) both for the lack of toxin and all the colors are named for women. Although sadly there is no “Alison” color. It would be an iridescent purple or teal or silver. But I digress.

The company sent me an email about the contest. Then some of the social media mavens I follow were pinning their colors. What the elements of the contest did were build their Pinterest base; provide a small prize, set a limit for growth, which drives participation. Keep these tactics in mind for your own online contest.

Help us create the ultimate Zoya Nail Polish Summer Trio and we’ll give away 2000 of them.

Get ready for some fun in the sun! Re-pin your favorite Summer 2012 Beach and Surf Collection colors to help Zoya Nail Polish create a beachy-chic mini (.25oz bottles) trio that will seriously amp up your summer style…

What you need to do:

  1. Follow Zoya on Pinterest
  2. Re-pin your must have Beach & Surf shades from the Zoya Pinterest Collection Board onto any board of choice.
  3. The top 3 most re-pinned shades will determine the trio shades!
  4. 2,000 trios of the unique combo selected by Pinterest followers will be given away *FREE!
  5. There’s a catch… 20,000 re-pins TOTAL must be reached between all 12 shades for the giveaway to take place!

Happy Pinning! The promotion ends Monday June 5, 2012 at 11:59pm EST. Pinterest Collection trio and code will be announced Monday, June 11th IF the re-pin goal is met. Don’t forget to spread the word!

*Shipping & Handling fees apply.

Terms & Conditions
*This contest is valid on Zoya’s Pinterest page ONLY from 5/22/12 – 6/05/12 11:59pm EST. Giveaway is contingent to number of re-pins achieved – Promotion code will be released on the Zoya Pinterest Collection Board. Mini trios (.25oz bottles) will be available while supplies last. Limit one promotion per account and household. Consumer orders only. Not valid with any other coupons, codes or promotions. Orders with promotion codes are not eligible for returns or exchanges. We are not responsible for incorrect addresses or credit card entry errors. Code must be entered at the time of purchase. Please allow up to 4 weeks for shipping if volume warrants it.

Zoya is the new color of fashion! www.zoya.com
You are receiving this email as a customer of Art of Beauty, 5060 Taylor Rd #D, Cleveland OH 44128
Phone: 216-438-6363.  Art of Beauty is the maker of Qtica, Zoya and Zoom Product

I didn’t participate in the contest. I haven’t blogged in two weeks, no time to get caught in Pinterest. But as a consumer, I still love the product, loved the idea of the contest, and may actually purchase the trio if I can find the time to figure out what the summer beach colors are. Zoya won’t know it came from the contest. But I will. Keep that in mind as you build your online revenue.

How to get $25,000 in free advertising or at least win a contest

Enter a contest to win $25,000. That’s what the local Reno Veterans’ Guest House did. And they asked the community to help. The Home Depot Foundation apparently runs a contest once a month and gives back to the winning charity $25k in gift cards. The votes come through Facebook and Twitter (links to the FB page). In order to vote you have to “Like” the Home Depot Foundation. A great way for HDF to capture followers.

But here’s why it worked for REno Veterans Guest House. They clearly had a plan. They utilized skills from some local public relations pros. Staff and publicists for Veterans Guest House posted on Facebook seeking vote.s They provided simple instructions in a post. They shared samples stories like starting because a vet’s wife and kids slept in their car while the vet was in hospital cause they couldn’t afford hotel fees. And they properly tagged links to the Home Dept Foundation page; links and comments on their friends pages, groups.Lesson-take advantage of your relationships and post in appropriate group discussions.

They also sent instructions via LinkedIn. They emailed a letter to every person on their personal lists and asked people to forward. I did. My audiences are not the same on FB and LinkedIn-some overlap. But different people use different tools. So their plan covered their bases.

They also pitched local media. So a news station covered the contest, as did a radio station.More than once. The newspaper printed the contest. And that’s just the media I was paying attention to.

And the contest started to get close. Several PR pros took up the challenge-many of us have reasons to love vets. I posted daily on my personal Facebook page, on my business page and on many groups I’m associated with. I tweeted the contest–Congressman Amodei even retweeted my post. We hardly see eye to eye on any political spectrum, but we do for vets. I gave extra credit in my public relations class assignment-and some students took me up on it. Can’t tell you how many friends appreciated my daily reminders on Facebook! The voting went back and forth. If I heard correctly, it’s the first time the contest has ever seen that kind of action. The other program was based in Atlanta-Home Depot’s hometown with close to 12 times the population of Reno Nevada. But it just took a few groups to dedicate themselves to the project-and a lot of social media.

If the Veterans Guest House had tried to buy the coverage of their services across all those platforms it would have easily cost $25000. I don’t recommend measuring with Advertising Value Equivalent, but clearly this program demonstrated to non-profits and small businesses unique ways to LEVERAGE a contest to build awareness, supporters and increase capacity.They carried the news story further with the win; getting back on the radio and television and further telling the story. Posting the news on their website.

The Veterans Guest House is now trying to capture who did what for them. My only criticism in their plan was the direct link to Home Depot rather than driving traffic to “Like” the Veterans Guest House page and find the link there. But hey, they are working towards connecting with their supporters. And maybe they thought of that and were concerned about barriers for participation. Won’t try to second guess them.

And now they’re in a contest for $250,000. Look for the social media posts on how to vote for them throughout March!

Keep Learning New Skills in Your Field

Words shiny and new for new skillsToday I’m in WordPress Camp. It’s amazing what you need to learn as an entrepreneur and I encourage you to stay current in the trends in your field. WordPress is an astounding platform that can function as your website. Imagine having a great tool for small business owners to create their own website, or at least have a pro create it in this format so you can easily update your content without having to go to someone else for every new item.

Came to learn some of the nuances, like the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Not going to be an expert by any means, but can certainly help clients sort through their options in creating web pages.

It’s the largest content management system, statistically. Fourteen percent of users are on WordPress. That’s amazing. Open source from a security system, which is great for your business. The key to know is that it is, as instructor Colin Lorentz says, “Free as in Speech, not as in beer”. Something to keep in mind if you sell products on it. Means someone can take your idea and change it, make it better or worse, but you have no control. Gives the incentive to use the pros creating website if you sell products.

So class is started. Hoping you take a class or two to be top in your field. I’ll keep you posted on my new trends.

Three social media failures: selling or boring the wrong audience

If your social media marketing efforts aren’t working, before you throw up your hands and decide it’s social media that’s not worth your effor,t make sure you aren’t contributing to the problem of why your social media isn’t working.

Wrong audience: if you’re on LinkedIn but your audience is on YouTube, you have a problem. LinkedIn likely great for business to business solutions; YouTube a variety of audiences with a keen interest in visual information. Figure out what platforms your audience is on and go there. Make sure you make it easy for them to get there from your website.

You’re boring.  Social media requires personality and your business needs to reflect yours. If you don’t know what that is, get help but be really clear when outsourcing so the tone and comments reflect who you are.  That means you don’t get to delegate to your niece just because she knows how to start a Facebook page and went to college. You can’t leave the same content for weeks on end–if you commit to the platform, commit with currency. Show your fun side, and have fun.

You’re just selling. No one wants to be sold, so ease up on the deals. People do business with people they like; tell them stuff don’t just sell them stuff. Allow for two way conversation, engage them. It’s called social for a reason–you don’t go to a party or networking event and start selling (or if you do, you aren’t successful at it).

Not sure how to do this well? We can help.

 

Avoid being a #spammer

We’ve talked about the Twitter Hashtag (the number or pound symbol-#) and how to use it positively for a conference or conversation.  #eWN2011 is the going conversation this week from eWomenNetwork and the International Conference and Business Expo. If you are attending, it’s a great way to connect to new networks of people. You can get the scoop on pre-conference workshops or shared nuggets from concurrent break out sessions you can’t attend. What’s it’s not intended to be is a place to randomly promote your business.

No one likes that guy that comes into a conversation and tries to sell his insurance, his insider trading deal that will make millions if you invest, you know-that guy. You’d see them in the #AskObama conversation. I’m not talking about opponents to the Administration. Perfectly legit to provide contrary ideas or opinions, to ask the President hard questions on issues. I’m talking about the tweets about TV shows or the KKK or trying to promote their business.

As a legitimate business it’s tacky to interject your sales pitch into an unrelated conversation like #AskObama.There is a way to be a part of a conversation, like vendors at the eWomenNetwork conference can by all means say “swing by our booth and see what we have” or share their promotion or raffle or incentive. Attendees can share tidbits they’ve learned as it relates to a conference topic and share their expertise or success. But don’t just interject and say “buy this great whatsit!” by just adding in to the hashtag conversation. Can anyone stop you? No. Can you get some clients? Maybe. What you really will do is turn off prospects and hurt your reputation.

It’s a fine balance in social media to provide content value and connect to like-minded businesses or prospective clients, and just randomly selling and rudely interjecting. Know the difference and don’t spam the hashtag.