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The Ultimate Guide To Google+ For B2B Marketing

As one of the newcomers in social media world, Google+ is often underrated by most social media marketers.

While numerous marketers are trying their best effort on this social media channel, many of them failed to grasp the desired result. Another marketing place is needed, so the probability to get deals will increase. Well, you not only have to know what to say, but also how to say it. Ideally, creating posts in the correct format will facilitate users engagement. At the same time, it will increase the proportion of delivered messages.

Whether you are a brand or a potential client, the information from the infographic below will ultimately re-align your approach on Google+.

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The Complete Social Media Cheat Sheet For Professionals (Infographic)

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Social media marketing can be a daunting task, especially with the huge selection available out there.

Nowadays, with all of the social media channels on the market, it can be a little bit perplexing to decide which one to focus on. Should you tweet, like, snap, or comment? The following infographic breaks down the most popular social media services into easy to understand chunks, describing how they can be exploited, the demographics of each social media channel, as well as highlighting their pros and cons. Learn how to best leverage each platform for your business and start socialising right away.

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The Ultimate Image Adjustment Cheat Sheet For Social Media (Infographic)

Nowadays, everyone is on social media. Whether it’s a continuous stream of posts or a selfie in every single location, we have arrived to a generation obsessed with social sharing.

Images and videos grab the most engagement from your audiences. They are fun, easy to view and stand out from others. This is the reason why picture and video apps like Instagram and Vine have become increasingly popular. When it comes to engagement, posts that include photos get around 39% more interaction that posts without. Facebook and Twitter are constantly updating their services to provide the best platforms for media sharing and there are now thousands of ways to stand out from the crowd using visual media.

Here are five tips for sparking engagement using photos and videos on social media:

  1. Have a caption contest.
  2. Use quoted pictures followers identify with quotes and then want to share them.
  3. Have a message (and a link) to go with you image.
  4. Create short video clips.
  5. Make sure your images fit with the suitable social media channel.

Regarding the fifth tip above, here is an infographic that covers almost every aspect to make sure you have the right size, format and dimension for various social media channels.

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Five Overlooked Social Media Channels That Might Fit With Your Business (Infographic)

Social media is undeniably important for today’s business. However, when many popular social media channels have been dominated by big brands, one need to think about other alternatives.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Instagram are the big names when it comes to social media marketing. However, many marketers are unaware of the existence of less-known social media channels that might be useful for their business. Social media marketing is all about finding the right crowd. When you have found the perfect audience for your business, it doesn’t matter whether your social media selection is the big or the small ones. Thus, in today’s infographic, we will present five lesser-known social media channels that might fit with your business.

Having a social media presence is a must in both web and mobile marketing business. Consider taking the other way out from the big networks and more closely curating your social strategy by leveraging one or more of these overlooked channels:

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Five Quick Social Media Marketing Use For Startups

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Nowadays, startups are already aware of the power of social media for their business.

However, many of them are not using their social media channel to its maximum potential. The art of social media marketing lies on its flexibility. You can use it in many different ways from networking with other business owners, promoting your brand, targeting a specific demographic, to keeping in touch with existing customers.

Here are five social media hacks that you can use to grow your business:

1. Advertise on Social Media

Popular social media sites like Facebook have advertising programs where businesses can advertise on their network. You can target people by their demographics and location, making it a very cost effective way to build a fan base or promote your products and services.

2. Increase Your Market Share

One of the biggest challenges that startups have is trying to compete with the established brands in their marketplace. While it may be a difficult battle to win with an authority site or try to outrank them in the search engines result page, you can quickly gain market share through social media. One of the easiest way is to build an audience in your own social media channels. A good way to start is by embracing Google+ and Pinterest community.

3. Social Media For Promotions

It doesn’t matter whether you’re promoting a sale, coupon, or special event, using social media will help you get the most out of your promotion. Setting up your promotion on social media is more accessible to your audience than email as many people visit a social media site by default when they get online. People also follow businesses on social media to get notifications on the latest coupons and offers. What’s more, setting up an attractive promotion on social media means that your followers may share it with their network. So if you haven’t moved your email list or blog followers to your social media platforms, it’s important to do so.

4. Find Joint Venture Opportunities

The most cost effective way to bring in a large amount of customers is to find a joint venture partner. There are numerous businesses available on social media that you can connect and possibly set up a deal with. For example, a lawyer can easily team up with a physical therapy clinic for car accident or other accident referrals. It’s all about creating win-win deals with businesses that complement yours.

5. Integrate Your Social Media With Other Marketing Channels

It doesn’t matter what marketing channel you use, integrating social media can make your existing campaigns more effective. For example, social media can help you target consumers to include in your mailing lists for your email marketing campaigns. This will influence your conversion rates and lead generation goals.

LinkedIn Marketing Case Study: Cathay Pacific

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When successfully executed, LinkedIn can become a powerful social media marketing tool.

Cathay Pacific Airways is a nonstop premium airline service focused on the business class market. When they are looking for a way to expand their business accounts for the Asia and China market, they choose LinkedIn as their main marketing tool.

Reaching the target audience

Cathay Pacific faces the same challenges that all businesses face. They need to cut through the noise in the marketplace and reach their target audience with a compelling message.

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Through a creative LinkedIn marketing campaign, they were able to achieve both of these goals.

Why should you use LinkedIn?

LinkedIn offers a truly unique prospecting and marketing platform for B2B businesses like Cathay Pacific. By using LinkedIn as the main marketing tool, Cathay Pacific was able to target prospects via user profile data based on a number of key criteria:

  • Seniority
  • Function
  • Company Size
  • Group Affiliations

Targeting prospects via LinkedIn Groups

Given the company’s goal to expand business flights into the Asian market, Cathay Pacific targeted Asia-focused business groups within LinkedIn. Leveraging LinkedIn marketing solutions, the company was able to target members of these groups wherever they were on LinkedIn.

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These prospects were targeted in a number of ways including:

  • Graphical banner ads and sidebar ads
  • Sponsored polls
  • Recommendation ads

To understand the effectiveness of these tactics, it’s important to consider how they work in real time. When a person recommends a product or service on a LinkedIn company page, that action triggers an update that goes out to this person’s entire LinkedIn network. This promotes even broader interest. Furthermore, being that it is consistent with the normal look and feel of LinkedIn, it promotes better click through rates than standard ads.

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Working alongside LinkedIn, Cathay Pacific was also able to obtain user data every time somebody clicked on a recommendation ad. This offers the company an extremely warm, prequalified lead.

“Where we advertise is where the business person is going to be. And on the social media side, where is the business person? They’re on LinkedIn.” – Dennis Owen, VP Marketing Americas at Cathay Pacific Airways

By utilizing LinkedIn for this campaign, Cathay Pacific gained brand exposure with thousands of additional businesses that were already prequalified. The campaign undoubtedly will provide long-term value for years to come.

Crafting Influential Brand Advocates That Sell (Infographic)

Brand advocate is the representative of your business. It can be online influencers with millions of social media followers or people who are active or well-respected in their industry.

Every business knows that customer satisfaction is the most effective advertisement, as they will spread the good words about you and your business for free. Plus, colleagues and friends are more “reliable” than company’s voice. However, creating brand advocates is also as important as providing a great product or service. Customers want to engage with your brand and it’s your responsibility to provide the best relationship with them. If you don’t know where to start, this infographic explores five simple tips on how to create influential brand advocates.

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Six Useful Steps To Be Successful In Social Media

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Social media is more than just a fun way to engage and communicate with friends. When strategically implemented, it can be an extremely powerful business marketing tool.

However, a common mistake that most businesses make is failing to develop a solid social media marketing plan. Having the perfect plan for social media marketing is essential. Every savvy business owner does not buy traditional advertising without developing a plan, and the same principle applies with social media.

A social media marketing plan includes numerous similar elements of a traditional marketing plan. Market research and consumer purchasing is a must. Identifying brand strengths and weaknesses is also important. If you are clueless about how to start your social media marketing strategy, here is six handy steps to be successful in social media:

1. Assign a social media manager

With the number of tasks involved on running a successful business, social media can be accidentally left out. Before your business starts on a social media campaign, it is good to assign a person or multiple people who will be in charge of monitoring and posting content. It is important for the social media manager(s) to not only ensure content is posted on a regular basis, but also monitor and respond to all comments and feedback. The assigned staff should be willing to monitor the company’s social pages 24/7, which can be easily accomplished through e-mail alerts and mobile apps.

2. Create branded pages

Once you have assigned your social media manager(s), it’s time to create branded pages. First, you need to determine which social media sites that you want to use. Small businesses should consider Facebook, Twitter and Google+ at the very least. In some cases, other sites including LinkedIn, Pinterest and Houzz may also be good choices.

Most social media channel today has cover picture feature. It has big flexibility that you should not waste. The feature allows you to incorporate some specific elements for maximum impact. Here are some ideas for you:

  • Use high resolution photograph. Ugly photograph looks unprofessional.
  • You can integrate your profile picture into your cover photo, thus creating a bigger image.
  • Incorporate a call to action to the cover picture.
  • Point out where people can call or contact you.

After you create your branded social media pages, be sure to include links on your website and invite all of your customers and friends to like/follow your pages.

3. Create a planning calendar

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Now that your social sites are “live”, it is time to create a planning calendar. Ideally, this should be done on a monthly basis. Your planning calendar should outline the following things:

  • Number of posts per week.
  • Time the post will be made. Ideally, you should vary your posting times.
  • Identify the content for each post.

A planning calendar should contains the basic foundation of your goals. The calendar ensures you to maintain your social sites and post on a regular basis. Of course, you can also post other news, tips and ideas as they arise. Be flexible. The biggest pitfall businesses run into are they generally have a lot of excitement when they first establish their social media presence, but the momentum quickly fades. Having a monthly planning calendar will help keep your social media efforts moving forward.

4. Generate engaging content

Content is King

Engaging content is a must

Content is a king, thus engaging content is a must. Once you generate content, you can plug it into the dates/times you have reserved on your social media calendar to compose posts. As you consider content, think outside of your company and put yourself in your customer’s shoes. You should think about what type of information that is not only engaging, but something that followers would like to share. Creating shareable content is one of the quickest ways to pick up new followers.

Here are some content ideas:

  • Weekly tips and advice.
  • Post something humorous, but not offensive.
  • Highlight and recognize your customers.
  • Incorporate “social media only” offers.
  • Be interactive. Ask questions people will want to answer.
  • Add photos and videos.
  • Coupons and contests.
  • Product overviews.
  • “How To” videos.
  • Sales and special events.

Remember, maintain the attention of your followers to keep them engaged.

5. Monitor responses and track your results

Monitor all comments and respond in a timely manner is quite impossible, especially if you receive tons of them. Good or bad, all feedback needs to be addressed. If someone praises your product and/or service, thank them. On the other hand, if they have a complaint or concern, reach out to them. It is important to investigate the validity of the negative comment and address it immediately. Customer feedback can help you better understand reaction to your products and services.

Also be sure to incorporate a good tracking system. This can really provide important insight into your customers and their behavior. Companies such as Global Response provide excellent outsourced social media analytics programs that can be easily incorporated and integrated into your social strategy.

6. Use results to better understand consumer behavior and reaction to your products/services

What a better way to know customer demand than to ask them yourselves? Don’t be afraid to engage your followers and get their opinions. Doing so can help identify both areas of strength and weakness.

Social media may intimidates many small businesses. However, if you approach it like any other form of marketing and develop a plan, it can become a very useful and effective tool which complements your traditional marketing strategies. Good luck!

Seven Biggest Social Media Marketing Mistakes That You Should Avoid

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Social media marketing is like a double-edged sword. If you are not careful when using it, you can cut your business into pieces.

The problem is, most companies and marketers haven’t figured out how to manage their social media marketing in the right way. Most of them are not fully aware that the ultimate goal of social media marketing is to create a personalised, relevant and enjoyable experience for their audience.

Brands with a socially awkward attitude aren’t just pushed aside. They also miss out on the opportunity on building valuable relationships, which in some cases, end up on a viral list of social media blunders. Whether the message of the said brand is too boring or too exposed, your social media approach should be primary in your consumer’s mind all the time. Here are seven biggest social media marketing mistakes to avoid. Hopefully, by avoiding the following points, you can keep your audience engaged, interested and loyal.

1. One Way Conversation

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One way conversation is a big mistake that almost every companies made on the past. The key to social media content is “to show,” not “to tell”. Research has revealed that audiences prefer engaging with visual content over text. Did you know that tweets with image links get an engagement rate 200% higher than those with just 140 characters? Flooding your feeds with line after line of text could cause you to miss out on a huge opportunity to connect with your buyers.

Luckily, it’s easier than ever to share visual content these days, thanks to Instagram, Vine, Pinterest and other “visual” social media channels. Picture really is worth a thousand words, but more importantly, it avoids one way conversation.

2. Combining Direct Sales With Social Media Marketing

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Trying to apply your advertising approach to social media marketing is a big mistake. In fact, one reason behind the effectiveness of social media is because so many people tune out traditional media and mass messaging. On social, it’s even easier to mute brands that talk, but don’t listen. With a quick click, consumers can unfollow or remove your content from their feed.

Instead of talking about yourself all the time, make your audience the center of attention by highlighting their interests make your audience the center of attention by highlighting their interests. Your social following isn’t a captive audience, so take a break from broadcasting and start sharing content they’ll actually want to click on.

3. Tweeting Without Thinking

Remember this one?

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Staying relevant today isn’t easy as trending topics go from viral to ancient history in a daily basis. So how can marketers keep up? The quick solution is newsjacking. Instead of trying to generate buzz from scratch, brands piggyback on the popularity of top headlines to amplify their own content. However, social media mistakes are often caused by careless actions.  Think about your messages carefully before posting them on your social media accounts.

4. Assuming All Social Media Platforms Are Equal

A good social strategy should not be one size fits all. For example, B2B audiences spend most of their time on LinkedIn, while B2C buyers can be found on Facebook. Find the channels that best align with your audience’s interests, then experiment with the type and style of the content you think will resonate most. Test all of your materials to determine what works and what doesn’t, and optimise accordingly. Instead of publishing the same content to every channel, the best social media teams create tailored approaches based on the medium and the message.

5. Muting Consumers

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It used to be that if a customer had a complaint about your product or service, they could tell their friends, family or a 1-800 number. Today, consumers can share negative reviews with their entire network with a simple click. Not surprisingly, 72% of customers who complain about a brand on social expect a response within an hour. Still, in some cases, they are lucky to get noticed at all. Whether you have a handful of followers or 31 million Facebook fans like McDonald’s, you can’t afford to ignore your audience. Period.

6. Becoming Less ‘Human’ Towards Your Consumers

In an age where buyers are constantly bombarded with deals, promos and ‘lowest price’ taglines, your brand’s personality is crucial to stand out from the pack. Corporate jargon and automated replies will send your audience running in the other direction, while brands that aren’t afraid to let loose will be welcomed with open arms.

Building a community of brand advocates today isn’t about what you’re selling. It’s about what you’re saying. Luckily, the casual nature of social media makes it easier than ever for us to talk to our audience like humans.

7. Assuming Your Social Strategy Works Perfectly

Nowadays, measuring the true impact of your marketing efforts was nearly impossible. Luckily, marketers today have more data than ever to truly understand how our efforts impact the company’s bottom line. Still, of the 88% of brands using social media platforms for marketing, only about 37% are taking the time to measure the ROI of their efforts. It’s easy to tally likes and retweets to get an idea of how engaged your audience is on social, but those numbers don’t tell the whole story. There are myriad metrics to consider to help put a dollar value on your Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn efforts.

From here, every marketer has a different path, but avoiding these seven social mistakes can help us all steer clear of serious pitfalls.

Twitter Analytics Are Now Available To All Users

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It seems like Twitter doesn’t want to miss the party.

Following Instagram and Pinterest move, Twitter analytics now are accessible for regular users. This is definitely the next step, continuing from last month’s update when Twitter released analytic dashboard for marketers, verified users and Twitter Card publishers. The initial experiment was on June when Twitter began testing its analytics dashboard to users outside of its advertisers.

The new analytics dashboard lets users see how many impressions each tweet has received, how many times other users saw the tweet on their Twitter account, the number of favorites their tweet has received, how many times others have clicked on their profiles, and the number of retweets and replies on a certain tweet. It also shows how many times users engaged with a tweet and what that engagement was.

The statistics can be obtained by visiting analytics.twitter.com.

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However, there are several In order to see these analytics, your account must be at least 14 days old. It cannot be deleted, restricted, protected or suspended account. Most of your tweets should be in English, French, Japanese or Spanish.

While many social media experts are not quite sure what Twitter is hoping users extract from these new statistics, the numbers are certainly useful for brands and individuals who want to better reach a larger audience. They assume that the “regular” Twitter user simply may not care about this feature. In the past, regular users relied on third party apps for all of their Twitter metrics. Creating analytics feature for regular users is definitely an interesting move for the social media company. It just a matter of time when the analytics will be integrated into the mobile apps.