5 Quick, Painless Ways to Make Social Media Marketing Easy

Five years ago, businesses weren’t convinced that spending time on Twitter or Facebook would help them find new customers. Now, 77 percent of B2C companies and 43 percent of B2B companies find customers on Facebook. That’s a statistic that can’t be ignored. And the numbers prove high across other platforms too, including Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram.

But while marketers can’t deny the power of social media marketing, social media users fall into two groups:

● Those who tweet and post updates constantly

● Those who think it’s too complicated, and never latch on

If you fall into the second camp, I invite you to keep right on reading — this one’s for you. While you might’ve told yourself using social media is just too hard, that you don’t have time to do it, or some other seemingly reasonable excuse, I’m here to tell you that you can use it, easily and effectively. You just need a few tips and tricks to make it manageable.

Keep it Simple

There’s no reason you need to sign up for every social media site under the sun. In fact, it’s better if you don’t. The more accounts you have to manage, the more your time will be divided, and the more likely it is you’ll do a poor job across the board. You might want to reserve your brand name on the major social networking sites — even if you don’t plan to use it — simply for brand security purposes. Again, just because you have an account doesn’t mean you have to use it.

Instead, choose two or three sites where you feel you’ll get the biggest return. How will you know which to choose? Find out where your customers spend time and study the demographics of each social platform. Spend more time on fewer sites, and you’ll attract followers faster.

Set a Schedule

It’s not necessary to spend hours a day on social media. If you’re smart about it, you can invest just a few hours a week and still get phenomenal results.

But, do put it on your calendar. Otherwise you’ll push the task off to the side, and before you know it, your last social update will have been posted weeks ago. Not a good look for your brand.

Find Tools to Work Smarter
Use a social media monitoring and management platform such as Hootsuite or Buffer to update multiple profiles from one place. Both of these tools make it easy to schedule your content, so you can spend one hour preparing future tweets and posts to get a steady stream of updates all week, as opposed to trying to find time during the thick of the week.

Additionally, you can use these tools to find new people to follow and respond to any questions or comments sent to you.

Integrate with What You’re Already Using

Set up your social profile links on your website so people can click to follow you elsewhere. If you use WordPress (and I hope you do!), implement the social share features of WordPress so blog visitors can easily share your content and attribute it to you. See if your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software can pull in social updates from customers. One CRM program that does this well is Insightly. Thanks to Insightly’s social media integration, you can easily see what your clients or their companies tweet or share on more than 50 social media platforms right from within the CRM system, which can help you stay tapped into their business needs.

Monitor Brand Mentions
People talk about your business on social sites, whether you’re listening or not. But if you’re paying attention, you’ll find ample opportunity to connect with existing and future customers, as well as nip customer complaints in the bud.

Use a monitoring tool to track any mentions of your Twitter handle (@yourcompany) as well as your brand name without the “@” sign, along with any keywords related to your company and industry.

If you take social media one day at a time, it’s less daunting. And while it will take a few months to really ramp up your followers and attract engagement with your brand on social sites, the additional customers and stronger relationships will make it well worth the effort.

 

Article from Lena West, Huffington Post

Full article can be viewed at: huffingtonpost.com

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Social Media Pave Way for Twinkies’ Return

A giant billboard of a Twinkie in Times Square. A new Hostess website featuring a countdown clock. A social media campaign that encourages people to share their love of Twinkies and other snack cakes such as CupCakes, Donettes donuts and Ding Dongs.

Hostess is whetting consumers’ appetites for the return of some of its most well-known treats with a broad comeback campaign that touts the arrival of the products on store shelves Monday.

The marketing comes nearly eight months after Hostess filed for bankruptcy, and Twinkies and other snack cakes disappeared from store shelves.

The company was subsequently bought by two private equity firms, Metropoulos & Co. and Apollo Global Management.

Hostess plans to welcome back Twinkies, CupCakes, and both frosted and chocolate Donettes under the tagline, “The Sweetest Comeback in the History of Ever.”

“We want people to know that it’s the same Hostess, but with a different attitude,” says Dave Lubeck, executive director for client services at Bernstein-Rein Advertising, which created the ad campaign. “It’s younger, more aggressive.”

Social media are a large part of that approach. The Hostess Facebook page, updated nearly every day in the past three weeks, has close to 440,000 likes. The site began to tease the return of the treats at the end of June with posts like, “We’re back online. And pretty soon we’ll be back in the snack aisle.”

Article from Rebecca Castagna, USA TODAY

 

 

4 Daily Uses Of Social Media And The Tools To Help

“How do you use social media?” It’s a question I’d never been asked until recently. As I explained, it became clear to me that social media has become so deeply integrated with my life that I don’t even notice all its uses. Here are four ways I use social media, as well as the tools that make it possible.

Monitor Trends and Dig Deeper

I love learning, but events unfold quickly and information is scattered. Social media offers an incredible variety of breaking news, detailed commentary, and social signaling on topics that matter, but it’s often challenging to get only relevant information. Enter Topsy.

Topsy has been described as “the Google of social media.” It’s great for finding time-sensitive information, watching an event unfold, or digging deeper into an area of interest. The service works

across social networks and many different languages to bring you the best.

Keep Tabs

Twitter has evolved into a personal RSS feed. If you want to research the competition, keep up with your friends, or get content from your favorite publication, Twitter is gold. The problem lies in the volume. If you follow more than 150 people, seeing the most important information is a function of luck. Even Twitter lists become overwhelming because they require constant mindfulness about when and how many times per day to check in.

I found myself having constant information anxiety about what I was missing. Some might call this “the fear of missing out” (FOMO). I searched everywhere for a tool that would send me just the best from anyone I selected on Twitter. The tool didn’t exist, and my pain level got high enough that we decided to build it. Solve your own problems, right?

Brook sends you a daily email digest of the five best tweets from those you select. Every day, it does the hard work by grabbing tweets, scoring them based on social endorsement and filtering out duplicate results, aggregating the subscriptions, and sending them to your email every morning. It’s like having a personal Twitter assistant, and the digest has turned into my daily newspaper.

Find Out When You or Your Friends Are Being Talked About

It’s important to keep up with what is being said about you, your friends, or key topics. This can tip you off to important new developments and help maintain your reputation. However, searching for your company name, your name, your industry category, or your friends on multiple social media platforms can be extremely time-consuming.

A service that I like is Mention. Mention is a great tool because it’s a set-it-and-forget-it resource for keyword tracking on multiple social platforms. You can tell it which keywords you want to monitor, and it will notify you when it finds posts containing those terms. Make sure you pick specific terms, though, or you could end up with a ton of irrelevant notifications.

Another good tool is Newsle, which allows you to connect your social media and get notified via email when one of your friends gets mentioned in a news article. It has helped me keep up with my friends’ accomplishments, big announcements, and even an unfortunate arrest (seriously).

Optimize Your Posts and Track Clicks

Always being actively engaged in social media is not practical, nor is it productive. I found myself wanting to create a bank of sharable content — without sharing it all at once.

Buffer has been a huge blessing. It integrates with my browser and allows me to generate a social post with one click, select the distribution platforms, and store it for later to be released on a schedule. By allowing me to spread out my content throughout the day across all my social networks, it literally doubled my engagement.

The other key aspect of Buffer is its easy ability to track clicks. Each post contains a unique, shortened URL, allowing me to easily check how many people clicked my shares. Posts with literally no social engagement have been some of the most clicked-on, while others that got a ton of retweets received almost no clicks.

Bottom Line: Be Active but Efficient

Being immersed in social media and real-time data can be important. However, it doesn’t have to consume your life or create the need for additional employees. There are many tools out there (including the ones I’ve mentioned here) that can help you get what you need — without burning time.

 

Author: Brent Beshore | Google+ |@brentbeshore | Facebook | LinkedIn

 

What Social Media Platforms Are Right Fo

What Social Media Platforms Are Right For Your Brand?

Brands need to be present wherever audiences invest their time and attention. Increasingly, that means social media. U.S. audiences spend a half-hour to three hours daily on social media. Social media is one of the largest time buckets on mobile.

Brands and businesses that are invisible on social media will miss a chance at engagement that their competitors might seize. More importantly, there are already well-known cases of brands that successfully revitalized their images or launched themselves thanks to social media wins. The benefits to a successful social media brand presence are significant, even if the route to get there isn’t clear-cut.

The first step is choosing the right platforms to invest time and resources in. Which platforms to be on is a crucial question, even for the most deep-pocketed brands.

In a new report from BI Intelligence, we review each of the top social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest and Instagram), analyze the considerations and potential benefits for brands working on each platform, and explore what brands and companies would benefit most from focusing their efforts on certain channels.

Access The Full Report And Data By Signing Up For A Free Trial Today >>

Here’s an overview of how things currently stand:

Brands needs to be active on social: Although it is difficult to quantify how much social media influences purchase decisions, it is definitely making an impact. A multi-year study from Syncapse shows that brands’ social media fans spend more annually on their products than non-fans and 70% of Pinterest users say they use the site to “get inspiration on what to buy.” Social media is a long game and while it is a bit of a cliché it is all about relationship-building. Brands with the patience to stick to a smart strategy will see it pay off in the medium- and long-term.
Fortune 500 companies get this: Interestingly, although Facebook is typically considered the go-to social media for brands, Twitter has actually surpassed Facebook in terms of Fortune 500 adoption rates. 73% of Fortune 500 companies had active corporate Twitter accounts, 66% have corporate Facebook accounts, and 62% have corporate YouTube accounts. 2% of Fortune 500 companies now have Pinterest accounts. While this percentage seems small, it should be noted that the data is from 2012. Pinterest is young and it has already been able to attract top companies including GE (#8 on the Fortune 500 list), AIG (#38), and Lowe’s (#56).
Judging by this data, major brands should first look at Twitter, and then at Facebook and YouTube, but…: Each brand will have its own unique personality and goals. Twitter (or Facebook, for that matter) may not be right for them. Brands that have small social media budgets can still achieve a high level of brand awareness by focusing their resources on just one or two platforms. The platform choice ultimately depends on what your brand is trying to achieve.
Some platforms just aren’t ideal for certain types of brands: Money and effort should not be wasted by brands to be on all platforms, even if the budget allows for it. A surprising number of small and medium-sized brands fall into the trap of believing they have to be on all the social media platforms. A well-crafted “platform-native” approach is always better than a diluted presence on a half-dozen networks.

Download the full report to find out what you need to know about how to choose the social media platforms that are right for you.
In full, the report includes:

Reviews each of the top social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest and Instagram)
Analyzes the considerations and potential benefits for brands working on each platform
Explores what brands and companies would benefit most from focusing their efforts on certain channels

Read more:…