Posts Tagged ‘pinterest’
Thursday, July 17th, 2014
Tuesday, July 15th, 2014
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Getting more engagement on your social media accounts can increase brand awareness, boost sales, drive traffic and encourage customer loyalty. Many businesses are constantly looking for ways to get more “likes,” comments and shares on social media.
To get the best engagement and see long-term benefits you will need to use some strategic social media marketing plans. But, here are seven quick and easy ways you can start getting more engagement today to jumpstart your accounts.
Start Asking Questions
One of the quickest and easiest ways to start getting some engagement is to ask questions. Ask for product feedback, opinions, reactions to events or responses on anything that will interest your market. People love to talk, especially about themselves, so use this to generate some responses and conversation.
Participate in a Group or Community
Groups and communities are the perfect place for conversation and interaction and can even help you gain more followers. Find groups that are related to your industry or community and that are likely to attract people who would also be interested in your business. Join existing communities or set up your own groups and start inviting people to join them.
Mention and Tag other Users
Generate responses and conversations by mentioning and tagging other users. Do this with a status update or by sharing content from another business and giving it credit. When you mention others in your posts, they will be more likely to respond, starting a conversation, or even share your post with their followers, helping you reach a larger audience.
Start a Conversation
Start a conversation by asking another user a question or commenting on someone’s post. As you start a conversation with someone else, other users may also join in and before you know it, you will be involved in a conversation with a group of people and eliciting all kinds of engagement.
Post Something Different
If your followers are used to the types of things you post and are no longer interested in interacting with them, change things up. You may want to make some permanent changes to your overall social media strategy, but you can test some different tactics by posting something new.
Post something that is different from what you normally post and go with something funny, entertaining, touching, amazing, awe-inspiring or even controversial. Sometimes all it takes to start generating more comments and interaction is a small change in what you post.
Crowdsource Something Simple
Crowdsourcing something simple, like a photo caption, is a great way to get people talking and involved with your brand. Other ways to do this include asking people to vote on a new blog design, asking people to comment on which of your products they like best, using fill-in-the-blank posts or asking for photo submissions. This tactic is similar to asking questions, but it involves more creative interaction.
Do a Giveaway
Giveaways are popular on social media and they are an excellent way to gain new followers, get comments and encourage people to share your posts. Make sure the giveaway is for something your market values and that it requires people to somehow interact with your brand on social media.
All of these tactics can help you generate more interaction on your account right away. Start using these tips and then when you find what works for your market, consider changing your social media marketing strategy so it will be more effective.
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Monday, July 7th, 2014
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Increasing brand awareness through social media isn’t a unique goal. Many businesses use social media, and other forms of Internet marketing, to make their brand, business, products and services more recognisable.
When your market knows who you are and what you provide, you can increase sales, become an industry leader and build trust with your market, which will help your business grow. With just a few easy tactics you can start building this kind of awareness through social media.
Ad campaigns are a great way to promote your business and attract new followers on social media. Design a campaign specifically for people who don’t already know about your business or who have a very limited knowledge of what you do. The ads can be used to drive traffic to your website, increase sales or build your social media following.
Your social media campaign should give you direction and purpose. It should help you avoid random or unorganised posts and messaging. Make a plan that outlines what you want to tell people about your brand and what kinds of actions you want people to take, and then make sure your posts will help you accomplish those goals.
Develop a Personality
Part of your brand is your personality. Clearly define if your brand is fun, spontaneous, professional, casual, friendly or serious and then make sure that personality shows through on your social media profiles and posts.
It’s easy to get stuck in a rut and post monotonous content or updates that are dry and lack feeling and personality. Break out of this by becoming more human and conversational on social media.
Social media is meant to be conversational, so talk to your followers! Accounts that respond to questions, ask for feedback and interact with others attract more followers. Having conversations can also help you get in front of more people and build your social media presence.
Some easy ways to have conversations include:
- Asking Questions
- Thanking Customers for Feedback
- Commenting on Customers’ Posts
- Interacting with other Businesses
- Responding to Comments on your Posts
- Giving Shout Outs to Partners or Community Members
- Thanking Customers
As you start having conversations it will become a habit and before you know it your accounts will be a hub for your customers and draw the attention of people who haven’t heard of your business.
It’s hard to establish a brand and increase awareness when you aren’t consistent. As you start to include these strategies in your social media plans, be consistent. This means posting regularly, continuing to have conversations and maintaining your presence.
When you are consistent you will establish your place on social media and you’ll become part of larger conversations. You’ll also be more visible to other users, which will help you raise brand awareness.
Using social media is a great way to increase brand awareness and by adopting just a few habits and making sure you are using your accounts strategically, you can inform your market about your business and grow your customer base.
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Wednesday, June 25th, 2014
Image courtesy of takomabibelot/Flickr.
When you use Internet marketing to promote your business, you want to reach as many people as possible. Some new research shows that if you include just two things in your marketing strategy, you will reach 8 out of 10 Internet users.
So what are those two things? Social media marketing and blogging.
While these two basic Internet marketing strategies may seem simple, Search Engine Watch reports that businesses that use them reach 80 percent of Internet users.
To widen your audience and make sure you are reaching your target market, you need to use both social media and blogging strategically. If you use these tactics without purpose or direction, they won’t help you achieve results.
Jumpstart your Social Media
When was the last time you reviewed your social media marketing strategy? Reassessing your strategy often will help you make sure you are using each account to its fullest potential and benefiting from your efforts.
Choose your Sites
What social media sites are you using? Look at your accounts and make sure things like your biography, profile picture and contact information are all up to date. If your fans are engaging with you and you are gaining an audience, you are likely using these sites well. Consider if there are other social media sites that lend themselves to your brand and goals.
The content you create, curate from other sources or even the status updates you post should all help you reach your goals. You can accomplish all kinds of things, from increased brand awareness and sales to more email subscribers through social media. Decide whether the posts you share are helping you be successful.
Take some time to assess your social media accounts and strategies to make sure they are helping you reach your overall marketing goals.
Rethink your Blog
Your blog should also help you achieve your business goals. One of the biggest benefits of your blog is that it is a platform you have full control over. Social media sites come and go, features are always being added and removed and you don’t have complete control over how your page is branded. But, with your blog you know you have a platform that will always be there and will look and function the way you want it to.
Your blog also gives you a unique opportunity to get your own message, facts and information out there, without the risk of it being misconstrued. Media coverage, other blogs and sometimes even social media sites don’t give you full control over your message the way your blog does.
Who is Your Audience?
Think carefully about who your blog audience is. Is it potential customers? Current customers? Other businesses? What demographic information do you have about your audience? When you know who your blog is for, you can leverage it to your advantage. If the kind of content you are sharing isn’t of value to your audience, your blog won’t be very successful.
Social media and blogging are two very important Internet marketing strategies. When you use these two elements effectively, your campaign will be successful and benefit your entire business.
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Tuesday, June 24th, 2014
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We hear a lot of tips for making content go viral and lots of businesses put time and effort into making sure their content gets in front of as big of an audience as possible. But, once your video, article or podcast goes viral, what next? What you do after your content goes viral is extremely important.
Whether your content went viral in the truest sense of the word, or just gained quite a lot of popularity in your niche market, taking a few steps after it has spread can help you leverage the opportunity.
After a big hit like a viral video, it’s important that you don’t disappear. Continue your social media push and your Internet marketing strategies. A viral piece will help you get some attention and could lead to a short-term surge in site traffic or sales. But, if you want to maintain your market’s attention and keep getting results, you need to stay visible.
Continue to use the same messaging from your viral piece on social media, your blog and your website. Don’t let your market forget who you are and that your business was the one behind the viral content.
Ride the Wave
Riding the wave means leveraging the extra sales and site traffic for even bigger results. Doing things like offering special promotions, giving away free resources, promoting your email list and making sure your site is optimised to generate sales leads will help you take advantage of the extra attention your viral content produced.
Understand Why it Went Viral
Analyse your content and the results of it to understand why it went viral. Look at the key messages it included, the medium you used, where you published it and how people reacted to it.
There are lots of ways to find out why something went viral, but the best way is to make notes about the messaging and style you used and watch how people interact with it and share it across social media.
When you fully understand what it was that your market loved about the content, you can learn more about your audience and how you can enhance your marketing plan to hold its attention.
Make a Follow-Up Plan
After some time has passed and you have maintained your online presence, leveraged the opportunity and analysed why the content went viral, it’s time to make a follow-up plan. This plan should include ways you can use the same messaging and even some of the same tactics you used to see success with the viral piece.
For example, if a video did well consider producing another with similar messaging, using the same messaging across other pieces of content or boosting your social media involvement in some areas.
The idea is to assess your success and then find ways to use what you learned to enhance your Internet marketing plan.
Getting content to go viral or to be shared throughout your market is a big step and one that can bring a lot of benefits. But, when you do a few things after the content goes viral you can take full advantage of the opportunity and see even bigger benefits.
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Friday, June 20th, 2014
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Many businesses struggle when it come to deciding how many social networks they should use. Facebook, Instagram, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest and LinkedIn all want businesses to use them as marketing tools, and that’s just the beginning. There are so many social networks already out there with more being added all the time, that it can be hard to decide how many to use to promote your business.
It can be tempting to jump into that new network, but before you do, use these tips to decide how many sites you should be using to reach your market effectively.
Decide how Many Networks you Can Use Well
You might be able to use Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at once, but can you use all three of these well? Using a social media network to its fullest potential is extremely important if you want to see benefits.
If you aren’t able to use most of a network’s features, facilitate a dialogue, respond to comments, post regularly or really stand out on a social media site, you shouldn’t be using it. Of course, spreading yourself too thin can be frustrating, but it can also be damaging to your brand.
Having empty social media pages or accounts that you rarely update can make your brand look unorganised and your business unprofessional and less trustworthy. Only use as many networks as you can handle and that you can really make an impact with.
Find Your Market and Audience
Using a social media channel your market doesn’t use and where you don’t have an audience is wasting your time. To get the most out of social media marketing and to see big results, you need to find where your market is.
You can use general demographics, like the fact that most Pinterest users are women, to determine what sites your audience likely uses or you can do some research with surveys and polls to find out what sites your target market is on.
This simple step will help you determine where your time is best spent and which networks will bring the biggest returns.
Translate your Brand into a Network
Some networks lend themselves very well to specific kinds of businesses. For example, Instagram is great for brands that can use visual content to promote their business while Twitter is great for a business that can engage with people regularly and may want to post several updates a day.
Think about your business and the kind of content you want to use and then decide which social media networks are best suited to your brand. Make sure you use networks that can help you highlight your business and really make you shine online.
Choosing how many social networks to use is a common challenge. But, when you determine how many networks you can use well, where your market is and which sites will help you show off your business, narrowing down your choices becomes much easier and your social media marketing will be more successful.
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Wednesday, June 11th, 2014
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If you use social media marketing to promote your business you need to make sure your market is listening. If you continually post status updates, share pictures and promote links to your content, but no one is listening, your strategy won’t work. Many businesses struggle to find ways to measure how successful their social media marketing is and calculate their return on investment.
In essence, there are two main categories when it comes to social media measurement. In most cases you will need to use a combination of them to find out if your audience is listening.
Numbers and Statistics
First, you can measure numbers and statistics relating to your account to find out if you are reaching your market and whether people are listening to your posts. To determine what numbers you need to track, consider what your goals are and then ask yourself what numbers you need to look at to find out if you reached the goals.
For example, if your goal is to increase site traffic, you will want to measure the amount of referral traffic you get from social media sites. Some common numbers and statistics you may want to measure include:
- Referral Traffic
These are just a few examples of numbers you can use to measure how successful your social media marketing is. Set goals that you can measure with these statistics so you can gauge how successful your campaign is.
When you measure this kind of information, you can assess how big your online audience is and you can start to find out if people are responding to your calls to action.
The amount of engagement you see on your social media accounts can be a good indicator of whether or not people are listening. When people interact with your posts and respond to your calls to action, you know you have their attention and they are interested in your business.
You can use some numbers and statistics to measure engagement. For example, tracking the number of comments, shares and clicks can help you see how engaged your market is. But, you may also need to use some informal forms of measurement to find out if your market is listening.
Try to keep your finger on the pulse of your market and the kinds of conversations people are having on social media and watch your accounts to see if people are talking about your brand, sharing content from your website and commenting on your posts.
Engaged and active audiences will comment on your posts, “like” photos you share and even act as brand ambassadors, encouraging their friends to follow you on social media too.
This kind of audience will help you be much more successful on social media and can lead to more traffic, sales, brand awareness and a bigger business. Look at numbers and statistics as well as levels of engagement to find out if people are listening, make necessary changes, and take measurements again. After some trial and error you will find what works best for your business so you can stand out on social media and see the results you want.
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Thursday, June 5th, 2014
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Pinterest has gained a reputation for being a visual social media site that attracts people who want to save and share ideas and images. But, that’s not all Pinterest users do. According to new research, Pinterest users are also big online shoppers.
An infographic, shared by KISSmetrics, includes all kinds of very interesting statistics, including the fact that 15 percent of users don’t use other social media sites, a pin is 100 times more viral than a tweet and Pinterest drives more traffic than Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit and Google+ combined.
Why People Follow Businesses
The report shows just how valuable Pinterest is to businesses that sell products. Consider the following statistics that show why people follow brands on the site:
- 51% of users follow businesses for deals and coupons.
- 43% of users follow businesses for product information.
- 36% of users follow businesses to read or post comments about products and services.
The Pinterest audience is actively looking for information about products and services and in short, shopping around. When you pin this kind of content you are filling your market’s needs and at the same time promoting your business.
To get the most out of Pinterest, you need to share images of your products and services and offer deals. Do this creatively to capture interest and work to attract a following of people who will also share your pins, helping you build a bigger audience.
User Buying Habits
So how exactly do Pinterest users use the site for shopping? You might be surprised that this audience has major buying power that can help you increase your sales. Users aren’t just looking for ideas and inspiration; they are also looking for, and then buying, products.
- The average order value from Pinterest is £73.39 while it’s only £32.47 from Facebook.
- More ecommerce sites are shared on Pinterest than Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
- 50% of orders from Pinterest happen after 2.5 months of pinning.
- Most Pinterest orders happen on Mondays.
The fact that Pinterest users have so much buying power means that you can’t afford to ignore this site as you create your social media marketing plan.
Is Pinterest for You?
We’ve seen just how valuable the Pinterest audience is, but should you use the site to promote your business? Before you add it to your marketing plan, make sure the site matches your brand and can help you reach your market.
Pinterest is very conducive to visual brands so if your products are best promoted through pictures, graphs and charts, your business could be a good match for the site. Other things to keep in mind are that 80 percent of users are female, 30 percent are between the ages of 25 and 34 and 25 percent are between the ages of 35 and 44.
If your market and target customers are using Pinterest, the site should be an essential part of your social media marketing strategy. When you use it to promote your products and services, you will make more sales and your entire business will benefit.
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Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014
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Some new research shows that millennials, or people between the ages of 18 and 33, depend on social media to find and share content. The statistics are interesting and highlight the importance of social media marketing.
A few takeaways from the research from SDL include:
- Millennials check their smartphones 43 times a day.
- Five out of six millennials connect with businesses on social media.
- Social networks make up the bulk of content discovery, surpassing online newsfeeds, customisable newsfeeds, email and search engines.
- Millennials share an average of six pieces of content through social media, and five through email, a day.
We already know that smartphones and tablets have taken over and that people are constantly connected to the Internet for email, social media and even Internet browsing. But, this research shows that businesses need to embrace social media as a way to promote their content and encourage people to share it to reach a wider audience.
How to Take Action
If your target market includes people between the ages of 18 and 33, social media marketing needs to be a major part of your Internet marketing strategy. Without it, you will be missing out on a channel that will make it easier to get your messaging, content and links in front of your current and potential customers.
Build Strong Social Media Followings
Develop your social media accounts so they are branded, have personality, attract your audience and help you build a strong following. Your social media accounts are an invaluable tool when it comes to connecting with your market and delivering your content.
Create a Strategic Content Sharing Plan
Your content won’t help you reach your goals if no one sees it. Create a strategic content sharing plan that includes social media. Decide which sites are most conducive to your content and market and form a plan for how you will share your content.
For example, you may decide you’ll share images of products and people using them through Instagram and links to your blog posts through Facebook.
Use Shareable Content
To leverage social media and get people to click on your content, you need to create content that captures peoples’ attention and encourages them to take action. The research shows that people do share content through social media, but if you want your audience to do this, you need to create shareable content.
The content you post on social media should provide so much value that people can’t help but share it with their friends. The value you provide will depend on your business, audience and goals. For example, you may focus on providing entertainment, information, tips or ideas. Whatever your market needs, provide it and encourage people to share your content.
Social media can be a powerful part of your Internet marketing strategy. Use it to deliver your content and encourage people to share it with their friends so you can reach a wider audience and promote your business.
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Friday, May 30th, 2014
Through Pinterest you can promote your business in a visual way and attract a wide audience of people who are looking for ideas, solutions and products. But, just as with any other social network, you need to use Pinterest the right way to get results.
It’s easy for your posts to blend into the background and get lost in the sea of images on the site. To get traffic and customers, you need to pin strategically.
1 – Catchy, Professional Image
The most important part of any pin is the image. This is the first thing people will see and quickly tells people what the pin is all about. Use pictures that will stand out as people scroll through the site and that speak to your brand. A professional image will tell people your business is professional, trustworthy and an expert.
2 – Strategic Link to Your Website
Use Pinterest to drive traffic to your site and increase sales by pinning images from your website. In this pin, the attractive picture that shows off handbags links to Armani’s handbag page, where people can browse products and make a purchase.
It’s definitely okay to pin content from other sources, which can help you be a better resource, reach a wider audience and avoid being too self promotional. However, you do need to pin your own content to get bigger benefits.
3 – Complete Description with Keywords
Every pin should have a complete description about the product or content it links to. The description can be about the product or it can tell people what kind of value the pin links to. For example, a screenshot could use the description: “Our tutorial on how to set up our accounting software and get started.”
The description should also use keywords to make it easier for people to find your content. This pin uses words like “outfit,” “leopard print” and “sunglasses.” Keywords will help you optimise your pins so they will appear higher in Pinterest search results.
4 – Hashtag and Board Categories
You can also use hashtags to make your pins more findable. Try creating your own branded hashtags to group your content together and build your brand on the site. Make sure you have several boards set up on your account so you can categorise your pins. This makes it easy for your market to follow specific types of content.
For example, a technology company may have boards for topics like smartphones, tablets, apps and accessories. Then, users can follow the boards they are interested in and your content will be delivered to people who want to find out more.
5 – Branded Profile Picture and Verified Page
Make sure your account is branded by using a profile picture your market will recognise and associate with your business. This will appear next to all of your pins, so it will help tie your content to your business.
Pinterest verifies business accounts, adding a checkmark next to your URL and showing your market that the page is your official account. Check to make sure your account is verified.
As you use Pinterest, make sure each of your pins has all five of these elements to make sure you are getting the most out of the site and using it as a powerful part of your social media marketing plan.
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Image courtesy of hugovk/Flickr.
If you just aren’t getting the results you’d like to see from social media marketing, your efforts can become frustrating and even wasted very quickly. Putting so much time and resources into your Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and other social media accounts, only to feel like they aren’t getting you anywhere can be dangerous for your business.
Weak social media accounts don’t bring web traffic, sales, increased awareness or a strong community. They can also damage your reputation. So what’s wrong with your strategy? The answer will be unique to your business, but here are a few common reasons social media efforts fail.
People think You’re Spammy
One of the biggest reasons people stop following businesses on social media is that they feel the posts are spammy. If your account is too self-promotional, shares posts too frequently or pushes too hard for sales, it probably looks spammy to your followers.
Strike a good balance between posting your own content and self-promotional posts and content from other sources. Do some testing to find out how frequently you should be posting so that your followers are engaged but not overwhelmed.
There’s no Reason to Follow You
When you create content, offer services, sell products and work with your customers, it’s essential that you provide value. The same holds true for your social media accounts. Social media marketing is only effective if you give your market a reason to follow you.
Find out what motivates people in your market to follow you and then work to provide that through your accounts. Some examples of reasons people follow brands on social media include: deals, discounts, giveaways, company news, connections to other customers, inside information and customer support.
Your Account Lacks Direction
Look at the past few weeks of posts on your account and ask yourself if it feels unorganised, scattered or confusing. Of course it’s okay for you to post on a variety of topics, but it’s not okay for your account to lack direction.
Remember that your accounts are primarily marketing tools and make sure they are focused and have direction. Use consistent messaging, share content strategically and work to build your brand on your page.
Your Personality doesn’t Shine Through
To make social media work you need to be personable. Social media is a casual medium and to leverage it and attract followers you need to adopt a brand voice that resonates with your social media audience. This doesn’t mean that you need to change your brand, but it does mean that you need to make it more social media friendly.
Avoid stiff, robotic posts that don’t allow people to connect with you. When you post to social media accounts, imagine that you are talking to one of your customers. Maintain a professional tone, but don’t become cold and distant.
There’s no question that social media can be an excellent marketing tool. In fact, in many industries, your business would be missing out on great opportunities if you skip social media. If your accounts don’t seem to be bringing value, make sure you aren’t letting these pitfalls bring your social media marketing down.
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