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Twitter Has Updated Its Direct Messages Policy, Enabling Users To Receive DMs From Anyone

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Twitter has updated its Direct Messaging feature, enabling users to begin receiving Direct Messages (DMs) from anyone.

Previously DMs could only be sent to accounts that were following each other. With the new update, however, DMs can be sent to anyone (regardless of affiliation or lack of affiliation). For users that are fearful this new update will bring a bunch of spam to their Twitter inbox, it is important to point out that the social network requires users to change their settings before they are able to receive a DM from anyone.

Moreover, users who change their DM settings to receive messages from anyone still have the ability to block people.

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“We hope these changes help you connect more easily – and directly – on Twitter with the people, causes and businesses you care about most,” says Twitter in its latest blog post.

Twitter’s update has begun rolling out across the globe, even on mobile devices. In fact, users will see a new DM button on profile pages (see image) on Android and iPhones when they are able to send a DM to someone.

The Landscape Of Social Media Customer Identity In The First Quarter Of 2015 (Infographic)

This infographic describes the consumer identity from numerous social media platforms. It breaks down how consumers used social login across the web and mobile devices by industry vertical and region in Q1 2015, from January to March.

In the first quarter of 2015, Facebook again maintained its steady momentum as an identity provider. With the world’s largest social network now approaching two-thirds of all social logins, only Google+ has maintained a sizable share of logins among other identity providers. On the other side, Yahoo is dropped to 5% of logins, was surpassed by Twitter for the first time, and has all but disappeared as an identity provider.

For more detail on social login preferences across the world, take a look at the infographic below.

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Becoming A Successful Social Seller (Infographic)

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Here is a fact that you might already know: Nearly 8 in 10 sales-people and marketers who use social networking sites as a selling tool outperform those who don’t.

No doubt, social selling has become an integral part of modern sales and marketing strategy. However, what are the skills of successful social seller? What are their personal traits and what makes buyers engage with them? Find out the answers to those questions in the following infographic.

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YouTube For Business: Facts and Figures (Infographic)

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Most marketers see YouTube as a bad place to put their ads.

YouTube is notorious for the high number of the trolls and their despicable comments. However, since its creation in 2007, YouTube has seen exponential growth. More importantly, the platform shows no signs that its popularity is diminishing. With more than 1 million unique visitors a month, YouTube has become a moneymaker for those who know how to cash in.

For those who are still uncertain to include YouTube as one of their social media marketing channel, worry no more. This infographic visualizes how YouTube’s growth and popularity illustrates the facts and stats of how wonderful it can be when it comes to persuade audio-visual customers. The infographic also provides some profiles of today’s YouTube celebrities.

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Turning Your Company’s Pinterest Account Into A Revenue Driven Channel (Infographic)

Nowadays, customers who use social media frequently spend more money when converted from a Pinterest referral than any other social referral like Facebook or Twitter.

Pinterest is one of the most used social media sites with over 70 million registered users, 71% of those members being women. Because of these statistics, you have no choice but to leverage it. Still, the real question is how do you generate revenue from Pinterest? How it can be leveraged to make you more money?

To show you how you can use Pinterest from a marketer’s perspective, this infographic breaks down everything you need to know about this visual-oriented network. Want to maximise your company Pinterest account? Take a look at the following infographic and start learning right away.

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14 Effective Tips To Improve Your Facebook Ad Campaign

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Increasing Facebook ad conversion rates without increasing the budget can be daunting, especially if you’re not an expert on this platform.

However, there are some tried-and-true tweaks that will get you better results, especially if you invest some energy into testing different versions.

In today’s post, we will share 14 methods to increase your Facebook ad conversion rates. The best part is most of them are very easy to do and quick to implement.

1. Target followers of similar brands

Narrowing your target audience is always a good idea in terms of getting higher quality social media ad results. On Facebook, you can target followers of specific brands. This is helpful when you are trying to sell to the same customer base as other well-known businesses or if you are trying to target the customer base of other non-competing brands in your market. Using this filter is a simple solution when you do not know other details about your target audience such as age, likes, job titles, etc. To become even more effective, create separate campaigns for each brand that you are targeting the followers of. That way you can create a more personalized and engaging message.

2. Maximise your cover photo

You can engage your fans and increase your likes and reach by starting contests related to your cover page. A great example is Dunkin Donuts, which asks fans to send in photos of themselves enjoying Dunkin Donuts and then chooses the fan of the week for their cover. Fans love it, they engage with their brand and it encourages people to check back and share if they won the weekly contest. It’s an ingenious use of free marketing space to engage fans and promote new products at the same time.

3. Choose an eye-catching image

You don’t have to use a shot of your business, product or service. Rather use a relevant image that will catch people’s eyes and have them read your ad. As the image itself can’t contain more than 20% words, its main function is to grab attention. If you can do that, half the battle’s already won.

4. Create a custom audience

You can upload a “custom audience,” a CSV file of your customer database or list. When you choose to display ads to a custom audience instead of to the masses, you are targeting people who know you and have already had touch points with your brand. You will likely have a higher conversion rate among those who are on your list but haven’t purchased from you yet. This is a great way to keep the customers you already have. It costs up to seven times as much to get a new customer than to keep a current customer, so why not use your Facebook ad campaigns to keep the customers you have by using the Custom Audience feature?

5. Use the video feature

Video has one of the highest engagement metrics on Facebook out of all the media options (like photos or text) that you can use for advertising. Rather than a static image or text with a link, consider transitioning some of your advertising creative to video. This is a great way to boost engagement metrics because consumers are likely to spend more time engaging with your brand through video.

6. Add shareable content

Instead of advertising your product or service directly, run ads to promote interactive content that your users would like to share. Run quick 30-second branded game contests that offer players discounts and coupons based on their scores. Players can earn scores through game-play and participating in various in-game score boosters (e.g. recommend the game to earn 25,000 bonus points, invite a friend for 50,000 points etc.). Then, you can use Facebook ads and sponsored posts to promote the game. The results are consistent with lower CPA (thanks to the “free” users you would get due to player referrals) and higher CTR.

To summarise, the trick is to identify content that your target audience engages with and use paid campaigns to promote it for optimal performance.

7. Collaborate

Advertise a collaboration piece with others in complimentary industries. If everyone goes in together, it won’t look like one person is trying to advertise anything. Make it feel organic, use quality video rigs and allow each entity to show they are an invaluable part of the project.

8. Retarget web visitors

It’s recommended to build remarketing lists and run ads based on website activity. This is extremely effective from a cost and performance perspective when launching a new product or offering an existing product that is relevant to a particular visitor. For example, when your client will launch a new graphic, use Facebook Remarketing to reach previous web visitors to generate new sales online. You can target or exclude customers who made purchases and offer the appropriate incentive to purchase. Running a Facebook Remarketing campaign is now a step you can take with just about every new product launch, as well as every new sale.

9. Test different versions

It’s always important to test several different versions of your ad with different photos, headlines, and text. Always put a small budget aside to figure out which ad is going to perform best and then put the rest of the budget towards that specific ad.

10. Test your images

If you aren’t trying lots of images, both vertical and horizontal layouts, you’re going to have a hard time. Get creative with your imagery — it doesn’t have to make perfect sense. Use Flickr or other free images resources to find free photos you can use. Download 10, and make 10 ad variations. You’ll be surprised with your results.

11. Hone your target

You really have to target the ad to as specific a group of people as possible for it to be effective. Casting a wide net doesn’t work — at least for us. The more specific you can get with ad content, the more successful our campaigns have been, whether it’s the imagery, the language you use, or the demographic you’re targeting.

12. Relate

I can’t tell you how many business Facebook pages I’ve come across that are simply promotion after promotion of their business (some done more cleverly than others). You must first relate to your users. Show them that you care are about what they care about. Challenge yourself to do nothing but communicate and relate for 30 days without plugging your businesses even once. It may seem counterproductive, but spend your advertising dollars on these posts that are relationship focused rather than on posts that are sales focused and I guarantee, if you’re genuine, you’ll see much better engagement and feel great about your new relationships as a bonus!

13. Create segments and use multivariate testing to optimise

Facebook’s ad-buying interface is a very powerful tool. It allows for very sophisticated targeting, but more importantly, deep segmentation and experimentation. Use experimental design to create ad experiments that you can optimise in real time. Whether you are varying ad copy, creative images or offers, be sure to test these different variables against multiple pre-defined customer segments. Use different campaigns and ad-sets every time you are testing a variation. Doing so will allow you to isolate the effect of the variable normalised across everything else. That’s why you need to employ this type of experimentation across multiple segments — doing so allows you to identify what’s driving performance across your entire audience as well as what works for subsets.

14. Match the message with the destination

It’s best to create multiple advertising campaigns and landing pages. You need to test the messaging that attracts people’s attention and then converts them on the landing page. Create multiple landing pages with Optimizely, then create multiple ad campaigns on Facebook. Mix and match the ad and landing page variations with the ultimate goal of getting a lower CPA (cost per acquisition). For instance, an ad might get a good click through, but for whatever reason people don’t buy when they get to the other end; that’s not good. Don’t mistake a good CPC for actionable and affordable business results.

LinkedIn Acquires Refresh To Improve Its Service

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LinkedIn is reinforcing its platform with the acquisition of startup and iOS app, Refresh.

Basically, Refresh enables users to find insights about people they are meeting with. In fact, the app was created to act as a digital briefing book so that professionals could discover common ground and build stronger relationships with the people they are meeting.

“To fulfill our mission, we built our technology to provide the most relevant and timely details at just the right moment. Over the past three years, customer engagement, reviews, articles, and customer feedback have provided validation that Refresh has excelled at doing this. Our joint passion for delivering insights that help professionals be more productive is what makes joining LinkedIn so exciting. Plus, LinkedIn gives us an opportunity to share insights with more than 347 million professionals across the globe”, said Bhavin Shah, Refresh’s co-founder.

He goes on to warn that the app will no longer accept new users and will be shut down on April 15th. After that, the Refresh team will focus on providing LinkedIn members with more insights to help them better do their jobs. It will be interesting to see how LinkedIn leverages Refresh, as the technology could prove useful for LinkedIn’s mobile apps, including the Connected app that aims to help professionals network and strengthen their relationships.

That said, Refresh says that it will contact its current customers regarding the shutdown process and to explain how they can download notes they have stored within the app.

Powerful Words You Need To Use On Social Media (Infographic)

Words have power. By carefully using the right words in your advertisement, social media updates, blog posts, marketing campaign and reports you can easily draw attention, inspire people or make them take action. This is why you have to be careful in using them for your business.

Words are potential weapons, so use them wisely. Nowadays, marketers are not only using power words on advertising copy,  newsletter, and press release but also on social media marketing. In 2014, 92% of businesses who increased exposure in social media, received 80% increase in traffic. This proves how important social media is for businesses, and power words can help them get the best out of it.

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Determining Clear Goals For Your Social Media Marketing Campaign

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Most people feel overwhelmed when it comes to setting goals for their social media marketing campaigns.

Whether you are dreaming of having one million followers or fans, or you are experiencing trouble in articulating your goals, the importance of having a clear and concise strategy in place for setting social media marketing campaign goals cannot be denied. With a solid strategy in place, you will be able to establish realistic goals, determine how you are going to reach those goals, and be able to measure when those goals have been attained. In today’s post, we will share six points to help you determining clear goals for your marketing campaign.

1. Be Specific

Begin by setting specific goals. Many brands make the mistake of being too generic when establishing social media marketing goals. Do not set a goal of simply wanting to grow your fan or follower base, as you could reasonably say that you have met your goal after adding just one fan or follower. The more specific you can be about your goals, the easier it will be to recognise what needs to be accomplished. Along with being specific, it is also important that you are clear about what you wish to accomplish. There should be no room for ambiguity in your goals. If you do not set specific goals, it will be impossible to effectively measure your activities, nor will you be able to understand what actually denotes success.

2. Be Realistic

Along with understanding what you must accomplish, you also need to have a system in place for measuring your progress and understanding when you have achieved that goal.

Consider whether the goal you have set is actually attainable or realistic. While it might sound great to have a million fans or followers, is that realistic? Setting unrealistic goals will only cause you to be set up for failure and disappointment. Establish goals that you can realistically meet. For instance, set a goal for growing your fan or follower base by 20%.

3. Be Punctual

Make sure you provide yourself with a deadline for meeting your goals. While it would be great to grow your fan or follower base by 20%, if you leave that goal open ended, your growth could easily become stunted. Establish a deadline to hold yourself accountable for meeting your goals, such as growing your fan or follower base by 20% in six months.

When establishing goals for your social media marketing campaigns, keep in mind that the goals you set can vary based on your company’s mission. Additionally, your goals will likely change as your brand’s influence and recognition grows.

4. Categorise Your Goals

In developing goals for your brand, you might find it helpful to break those goals down into categories. Here are four common categories:

  • Audience-building goals
  • Activity-based goals
  • ROI goals
  • Engagement goals

Note that the social media marketing goals you establish will also likely vary based on the specific channel you opt to use. Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest are all quite different. In setting goals for Twitter, you might focus on such areas as increasing engagement rate, tweet frequency, retweets, follower growth, etc. Facebook goals, by comparison, could be quite different, and might look more like this: to increase engagement, reach, or page likes. Since brands do not have profiles on Pinterest, as they do on Facebook or Twitter, your goals on this social media marketing channel will naturally be much different. Even so, that does not mean that you should not set goals. A solid goal for channels such as Pinterest or Instagram might be to increase shares.

5. Leveraging Past Stats

If you find that you are experiencing difficulties in determining which types of goals you should set, try pulling past stats or analytics so that you will know what you have accomplished previously. Breaking down these stats in terms of average monthly traffic and the percentage of traffic that came from various sources can provide ideas of where you can make improvements. Plus it gives you a good starting place for setting goals.

6. It’s Not A Pass / Fail Scenario

In short, you need to improve continuously. Most marketers feel as though they have failed if they did not meet specific goals and became discouraged. Rather than becoming caught up in the fact that you did not meet the goals you set, take some time to review and analyse what you did for future improvements. For instance, consider what you could have done differently, and what could potentially work better. Avoid the temptation to focus solely on what did not work. Look at strategies you implemented that worked well.

Remember that the only way to know what is going to work for your brand is to explore and try new things. This means testing, tracking your activities, and then making changes to your social media marketing activities so that you can make improvements moving forward.

Tips For Success On Twitter (Infographic)

Are you employing Twitter as a part of your social media marketing strategy?

Twitter has more than 288 million monthly active users and millions of tweets are shared daily. Undoubtedly, Twitter is the perfect place to connect for businesses to engage their industry and consumer network in a quick and concise way.

To help you get the most out of this micro-blogging platform, we have put together a few tips for improving your audience engagement and making your tweets more searchable in the infographic below.

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