Jubileeeeeeee #jubilee (Taken with instagram)
People will tell you that Twitter takes up time…. that it takes you away from other more important work you could be doing.
They’d be right in the in the first instance.
It’s easy to see the effort required to use Twitter well as a downside. Although it’s a free platform, it requires time and intelligence, as well as a plan, to make something happen.
But you won’t find me agreeing that there are more important things than finding new business and new prospects. That’s the lifeblood of every business.
So, what is it about Twitter that those who don’t use it well, don’t like?
As Chris Brogan says in his article on using Twitter for business , “Without a strategy, it’s just typing.”
Soooo, it follows that what might be missing for those who aren’t getting results is a Social Media Strategy.
Other things that people will say about Twitter :
Twitter doesn’t replace customer service.
It doesn’t – it becomes a key part of it if your customers are online. Do you know what they’re saying about your business? Or are you blissfully unaware of both the good and bad comments being made on the social media channels?
Twitter is just for technonerds.
Pah – who do you know who is on Twitter? Odds on they’re not all techno or nerds. Twitter appeals to an educated group of business people who want to know what’s being said and want to be heard by their peers. Clearly the numbers (3.8 million unique visitors over 30 days according to web marketing group) suggest that there’s a wide variety of people on Twitter. By using Advanced Search and other forms of monitoring and alerts, the game is to find those who are interested in what you do in your business. And they will be there…
Twitter’s only a few million people. (only)
Twitter doesn’t replace direct email marketing.
Twitter opens the company up to more criticism and griping.
All of those are true – but none are reasons not to use it (quite the opposite) – and we work with clients who see real benefits from adding Twitter to the digital marketing mix alongside offline marketing such as direct mail, as well as online direct email marketing. It’s possible to make that all the better by using intelligence gleaned from the social platforms by the way…
And as for opening you up to more criticism – don’t labour under the illusion that just because you don’t know about it, it isn’t happening! When’s the last time you checked what’s being said about your company or your sector on the social platforms?
Again, courtesy of Chris Brogan’s blog, here are some positive to throw back in Twitter’s favour…
“Twitter works swell as an opinion poll. Twitter can help direct people’s attention to good things. Twitter at events helps people build an instant “backchannel.” Twitter breaks news faster than other sources, often (especially if the news impacts online denizens). Twitter gives businesses a glimpse at what status messaging can do for an organization. Remember presence in the 1990s? Twitter brings great minds together, and gives you daily opportunities to learn (if you look for it, and/or if you follow the right people). Twitter gives your critics a forum, but that means you can study them. Twitter helps with business development, if your prospects are online (mine are). Twitter can augment customer service. ”
And most importantly, focused and incisive strategy coupled with time & effort results in recommendations, referrals, and new business.
That’s why we spend our time on Twitter for our own business and for our clients.
Facebook Rules for Cover Photos
I love Facebook. Do what you want, say what you want, post whatever pictures you want as long as you don’t offend anybody. Right? Nope. Nothing is ever that easy… There are a few rules that you have to follow to make sure that your company Facebook page (and all those lovely followers that you worked hard to attract, engage with and keep) doesn’t disappear, hauled from the web by Facebook for breaking its terms and conditions. First up, that huge attractive space at the top of your company Facebook pagethat is just begging to have an advertising picture on it? Don’t even think about it. You might think that you can get around the rules, but Facebook is sitting there thinking, “You might think I won’t notice, but I will” and you will get caught eventually!
What is banned from Facebook Cover Photo?
- Put any contact info on the picture. At all. Put it all in the sections of your Facebook page that they are meant to be in. The “About” section is the first place to start
- No ad copy AT ALL. No special offers, no sales incentives, no “buy now” text. No calls to action.
- No big arrows pointing to the Like button, or saying Click here.
What Pictures for Facebook Cover Photo?
Insanely Good Video
We work with some fabulous clients - we’re video producers across all types of business sectors - and across all sorts of budgets. For those who want the full creative video treatment with fresh and very innovative ideas (don’t expect anything ordinary) from our brilliant team of writers and directors, we are happy to pull out all the stops. We produce full broadcast quality videos and company promos which bring to bear our broadcast backgrounds making the TV programmes, commercials and idents that you’ve all seen on the BBC, Sky, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, Discovery. MTV, VH1 and any other channels you may choose to quote. And we want to bring our craft to those who want to dip their toes in the water and see what a difference video makes to their online marketing efforts… so we’ve created an option that means you can do just that from only £199…
We are only making one of these videos for each business sector, so once it’s been booked by your competitors, it’s gone! By the same token, if you buy one of these for your business, no one else in the same business as you can have one.
Video Production for Business
You may think that your product doesn’t lend itself to video, but you’d be wrong! Hazel and the crew at The Container Team wanted to have a bit of fun with their video while showcasing their product at the same time, and this is the result. It’s a feel good video that is embedded on The Container Team’s website. So not only does it showcase the company and the product, it is improving SEO at the same time. Win all round! (and I defy you not to singing “yes we do, do doodoodoodoo” for the rest of the day)
Establish yourself as an expert in your field with a series of videos that show your customers how to do things properly.
You’ll build your credibility and you’ll stamp your personality on your business - just like Darryl’s done here. We call it the video halo effect…
You can check out Darryl’s business here http://bertelectrics.co.uk/testimonials - and note how’s he used video on his website to give his prospects the testimonials they need to help them make a quick and easy decision to call him.
You can follow Darryl on Twitter - @DarrylBertie .
He’s got his bases covered when it comes to building his online visibility with both video and social media - a marriage made in Saucy Horse Heaven ;-0 Easy peasy! Can we help you use this approach to your online and digital marketing?
Social Media & your bottom line
Do you love Social Media? Do you love the chat, the sharing, the ability to talk directly to customers, future customers and peers? There’s no filter and that can give you unbridled access to people who you might not otherwise be able to communicate with.
If you don’t love Social Media, you think it’s a waste of time and don’t understand how chatting about everything but your business can help your business, then that’s a point of view shared by a number of businesses.
Both viewpoints are out there - and the question at the end of the day for most businesses should be - How does it help my bottom line?
What are your customers saying about you?
If two people are chatting in a cafe, or a networking event and mention your company, you will never know about it. With Social Media searches you can see when potential customers are discussing your company, or potential purchases of your products or similar products. You can give those interested advice and recommendations and share special offers with them, which may sway their decision to purchase.
Know what your customers are looking for.
Think creatively with your searches to find customers who might not even know that they need you. If you are a taxi company, search for “missed the last train home”; whatever company you work for set up a “can anyone recommend a…” search for your product or service. You’ll be amazed at the new customers you find that way.
Mobilise your website
You can engage customers who are actually at the point of purchase or needing your service by making sure that your website has been adequately set up to be viewed on mobile devices. If you are a restaurant, tweet a discount code or QR code pic on a quiet night for immediate use, with a link to your restaurant menu. You could also tie it in with existing deals in your area - for example, “Going to the cinema on #OrangeWednesday? Pop in to us for a pre-film meal”.
Are you interested in finding out what conversations are taking place around your business and your sector?
Get Video online
So, you understand the amazing boost video SEO can give your website and you’ve made the first step of filming your video- you’re ready to broadcast it to the wide world. Just one problem - your video is sitting on your camera and you can’t get it onto your computer. Mocking you, it refuses to upload onto your computer so that you can edit it. Although your first reaction is to launch either your camera or your computer (or both - Oh yes we’ve been there - out of the nearest window, here’s a quick checklist to run through.
Check your video equipment.
- Look at your cables. Are the ends blackened (which could suggest a shorting in the port)? Are all the connectors clear, clean and visible? Is there a break in the cable? Keep a selection of cables handy for just this problem. I’ve often had to replace cables that have been chewed by the dog!
- Check your ports. Do they look dirty or are there pins bent?
- Check your software. Is it up to date with no conflicts?
- Does your camera save your work in a file version that your software accepts? Always check this when shooting with a new camera for the first time. This problem is pretty rare these days as most digital cameras will download the software to your computer as soon as you connect it up. However, it’s good practice to ensure it’s going into a specific video folder where you can access it - that doesn’t always happen automatically depending on which camera you’re using so worth checking during the upload process.
Video still refuses to upload
“As marketers, we usually don’t approach our customers like we would approach a potential spouse, do we? No, we’re more like a drunken frat boy at his first freshman mixer. Most marketers approach customers and prospects more intent on the one-night stand than the long-term relationship. We know it’s wrong… but we do it anyway.” Absolutely superb article by Kyle Lacy at KyleLacy.com - pithy, concise and very much the world as I see it, when it comes to marketing… “At the end of the day, people associate themselves with other people that they like. Your constituents want to like you and have a relationship with you.” What are you doing to ensure that’s the case for your business? How carefully are you thinking about social media in the mix when it comes to finding your prospects and potential customers - and then actually ensuring they find out enough about you to decide whether they like you? Like you enough to do business with you? It’s how it is now… there is no way round this. Our weekly social media tips will help you begin to formulate a plan…
Enjoyed something online? Click that social media share button!
One of the greatest things about Social Media is how easy it is to share great content from other sources - and therefore how easy it is for you to get your content shared if you appeal to your viewers and readers on a level that makes them want to spread the love! On all the major social media platforms there is a lovely little share/reblog/retweet button just crying out to be used, so don’t be shy - click away! On most blogs, like this one, there will be a set of share buttonsas well so it is easy to spread the word. There are two main benefits to this
- You are still providing great content to your readers and followers.
- You widen your circle of influence by becoming known to the original content provider.