Social Media Platforms – how to choose?

Social Media Platforms – Which one should your business be standing on?

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In a world where social media has taken us by storm, it can be difficult to decide where to start and stop with your personal accounts.  When it comes to your business, the stakes can be even higher.

There are so many different benefits to each social media site, so many statistics and so many opinions it can become daunting for any business owner to make that all important decision…which platforms?

Know your business

It’s important that you remember that your business is unique. You have your own target audience, your own reasons for using social media. It is important to do your research but keep an open mind that the results for one business will probably not be identical to yours.

So having looked at your business objectives for using social media, how do you decide which site(s) to focus on? Well, one such as Facebook or Twitter may suit your business perfectly, or maybe you will discover that you would benefit greatly from using a combination or mixture of platforms.

Blogging

Blogging is a perfect opportunity to inject personality and passion into a business as it allows the client to get to know the person behind the concepts and sales. You also use it as a tool to sharing your expertise and personal business experience with your customers.   One of the main purposes of writing a blog can be as a source for content for your other social media accounts.  Blogs can be so easily shared on other social media platforms and are often attached to the business’ website.

Remember that whilst blogs are the perfect base to sharing with your target audience, they do need to be updated on a regular basis to ensure that you can hold up the attention of your viewers.

Facebook

Facebook currently has approximately 936 million daily users worldwide.   Many users consider using  it to be a normal part of their daily routine. As it is current, relevant and established, as a business your image and branding can be rapidly shared around your ‘friends’ and other ‘pages’ and also branch across other platforms such as Twitter.

Facebook also provides a handy tool to business owners. You can use it to access regular reports and statistics of views, traffic to your page and new ‘likes’. These figures can allow you to see who and how many people are being reached.

Twitter

Twitter is another platform with a massive number of users, in fact with over 27.3 million tweets being sent daily,  it may be a powerful tool for your business. Everything is done at speed on Twitter, with ‘tweets’, ‘retweets’ and ‘follows’ firing around every second. It can be therefore time consuming and a lot of energy is required to stay up to date with your audience and having the need to retweet and reply quickly.

Thankfully there are various programs such as ‘TweetDeck’ available, allowing users to monitor and stay on top of scheduling for the distribution of tweets.

If you want to know more about how to use Facebook or Twitter for business, get in touch for a chat and see how Social Bee NI can help.

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‘Social Media Strategy’ – It’s not what you think

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Do you use social media for your business?  Are you happy with your results?  Are you struggling to grasp the value of social media for your business?

If you have answered yes to any of these questions then like many of my clients you have probably asked: ‘Why do I need a social media strategy?’

It’s not just about Sales !

One of the most significant and obvious problems with an ah-hoc approach to social media marketing is that you risk missing out entirely on your business goals and objectives.

The first thing that a coherent social media strategy should do is define the business objectives that you are trying to achieve. Yes, in many cases the ultimate goal will  be to drive website traffic and increases conversion rates (sales). But it’s not just about sales! It is also about increasing brand awareness, building customer loyalty, promoting content in a consistent manner, giving a face to your employees and conducting market research. It’s a missed opportunity to view social media only as a sales channel.

It’s not just about Facebook !

With clearly defined business goals and objectives you can confidently articulate how your social media strategy will aim to achieve those goals.

You can start to think about which social media platform is most appropriate to your target audience. You must be clear from the outset which platforms you are going to use and be clear to your audience what you’re using it for. Some businesses deliver more effective customer service through Twitter because it helps companies keep their fingers on the pulse of what’s important to their customers.  Others share monthly promotions and offers via Facebook. LinkedIn can be used to connect with your company’s network of supplier and partner organisations in order to share ideas and expertise. It’s important to pick the platforms which are right for your business objectives.

It’s not just about likes and shares !

A good ‘social strategy’ is a powerful way to promote your business online. It’s not just about the number of likes and comment on your social media pages. It should not be owned exclusively by one team or individual. Social media should be integrated into every aspect of your organisation. It is a process that is weaved into the wider marketing  activities that occur across your whole business .

Ultimately, It means having a strategy to deliver the maximum benefit to your business through your social media efforts.

If you need help to plan, execute or manage your social media strategy then please get in touch.

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Catching the long-tail

Great piece by Claire Savage on catching the ‘long-tail’ on Google….

"making your business better"

When it comes to business websites, we all want to rank on the first page of Google. We want to be seen, and for customers to flock to our site, magnifying-glass-76520_1280love it and be inspired to buy from us. The problem is, there’s a lot of competition for those front pages…

Quality written content is vital for all business websites, but for too long, people have been over-stuffing them with keywords to boost SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). However, Google can tell if you’re purposefully overdoing this and will penalize you for it, so you’ve been warned!

While it’s important to weave keywords into your content naturally, it’s also important not to forget the long-tail strategy.

What’s the long-tail in SEO?

Simply put, the ‘long-tail’ is a short phrase relating to your business or brand which will ultimately help you rank higher on Google and other search engines. Instead…

View original post 274 more words

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Starting on Twitter… a quick guide!

When I start talking to my clients about Twitter many of them tell me they don’t understand it, and many don’t see why they should bother with it.  Twitter is commonly misconceived – it’s not like the average small business owner in the UK needs to know much about who was wearing what at the Oscars or which celebrity melt down just went ‘viral’? However, Twitter is much more than that  and there are some really useful things that a business owner can get out of Twitter and it shouldn’t take up too much time or effort.

So where do you start.

Step 1 – Have a go !

Quite simply, just have a go at some ‘keyword’ searches on the Twitter homepage (www.twitter.com). If you sell catering equipment try searching for ‘Catering’, or if you run a restaurant in Belfast you could try searching for ‘Belfast Food’. A huge amount of seemingly random information will be returned. But dig a little deeper and you will realise that this information are actually people’s thoughts, feelings and opinions on that subject. So if you are reading people’s thoughts about things you sell, then so are your potential customers.
Twitter is like a great big search engine for thoughts, opinions and experiences around your areas of interest. To avoid being overwhelmed, people on Twitter don’t read absolutely everyone’s stuff. Once you find someone who is regularly posting interesting things, for example, another global business selling  similar products, you can choose to ‘follow’ them and read their messages. But for that you will need to create an account.

Step  2 – Get Started !

Go ahead and create your own account. Twitter is like your very own newsletter which anyone can opt into. You have 140 characters to tell people about new products, promotions or anything else that may be of interest. Once you get people following your messages (‘followers’), they can forward (‘retweet’ ) any of your messages to their followers, and so on and so on. This is what makes Twitter so special, you can reach a large target audience with very little effort. And it’s not just you broadcasting information, it’s about starting a conversation, interacting and engaging with potential customers, locally or globally.

Step 3 –  Join the Twitteratti !

Make Twitter a part of your daily routine. Log in daily and get used to how Twitter works. Search for interesting people to follow, add your Twitter username to your website and marketing materials and try to post something at least once a day.  Try to reply to other tweets and soon you will start building up relationships and making conversationstwitter. It takes a bit of getting used but you will soon find that it’s a fun way to communicate with your current customers, and to find new ones.

In the next article I’ll provide some specific tips on how get followers and using Twitter to in a meaningful way to promote your business.
If you need a knowledgeable expert to help you get started with a social media marketing strategy for your business then please get in touch.
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Facebook to remove deactivated account ‘likes’ from pages

On Thursday Facebook announced they would be removing any likes from Facebook pages which are from ‘deactivated’ or ‘memorialised’ accounts.   What does this mean for you?   Deactivated accounts are NOT accounts where someone hasn’t logged in for a while – they are accounts where the owner has voluntarily deactivated their account (a step before deleting).

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Most pages will only notice losing a few likes.   The question is, why would you want followers on your page who are not using Facebook?   Surely the reason for posting on your page is to reach your potential customers – so you only want genuine accounts on there anyway.    I will be interested to see if any of my page numbers drop…  let’s wait and see!

https://www.facebook.com/business/news/page-likes-update

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Do what I say, not what I do…..

Since I started Social Bee NI, I have become steadily busier and busier, which is GREAT for the business, but I am letting my to-do’s slide!

When I kicked off my social media marketing of my own business,  I planned to blog weekly, send email marketing fortnightly and put tips on my Facebook page on a daily basis.    Hmmm…. this is not happening….  so I have to go back to basics on my business plan – (and yes, I do have one!)  –  as I am using Insightly to manage my projects,  I am going to create a new project called ‘Working ON your own business’….. time to make a list!    What tools do you use to help you manage your business?

makealist

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Alex from Target…..

Did you see the recent posts on Facebook and Twitter about ‘alex from Target’ – posts about a kid working in Target went viral – then more posts from marketing companies about how some person can be picked out of the internet and made into an overnight superstar also started to show up!   Turns out that Alex, doesn’t actually work at Target and the whole thing was a marketing plan by a new company called Breakr.   They say:

if you can earn the love and respect from a global community such as the ‘Fangirl’ demographic — you can rally them together to drive awareness for any cause even if its to take a random kid from unknown to stardom over night.

Pretty mermaidclever move – plus keeps us all on our toes – can we believe anything we see on the internet?

Read more on this here 

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