Yet marketers have concerns with the communities they’ve built on social sites
Social media marketers feel that having a presence on social sites is more important than advertising there, but there are still challenges related to keeping a community running online.
In July 2011, Microsoft Advertising and Advertiser Perceptions surveyed social media marketers in six countries around the world and found that 74% of them thought it was very important to have a presence on Facebook, but only 57% felt the same way about advertising there. On Twitter, presence also carried more weight, with 47% of respondents saying they thought it was very important. But in Twitter’s case, there was not as much of a difference between presence and advertising, at 42%.
Of the marketers surveyed, 72% agreed that measuring return on investment from social media was too hard, an oft-cited challenge of social media overall. More specific to having a brand page or account, 56% of marketers said turnover was too high and 52% said their fan or follower base was not target-appropriate. Read More
The amount of time you spend engaging in social media programs depends on your goals and what you hope to accomplish. In general each day, you want to spend at least a couple hours looking over sites, updating your status and responding to comments or questions. Truth is, it will likely take more time and be a continuous effort, but for good reason.
A good way to find out how much time to spend is by using certain criteria and doing a little research. As Chris Brogan Points out, one-quarter of your time should be spent listening to what others are saying – such as your competitors and the marketplace. Here, you will get honest reactions to your brand and or service in the Social Media forums. The next thing to do is to spend at least half of your time communicating with your audience. Talking to your audience via email and Twitter is a simple way to interact with your followers throughout the day. Facebook will take more effort but you’ll be rewarded for your time since it has a very large audience. In terms of creating content, you should spend about one-quarter of your time composing rich content for blogs, articles, email newsletters, or creating videos. To be really effective on the social platfforms, you need to keep up with trends and interact with your customers or other industry leaders to help grow your business.
Remember, it took Radio 38 years to reach 50 million users, TV 13 years, the Internet 4 years, Apple’s iPod 3 years. Facebook, on the other hand, added 100 million users in just nine months! Social media is a cross-cultural, political, gender and generation phenomenon and therefore, provides companies with a tremendous opportunity to generate sales leads. Ultimately, social media serves as a referral tool to your product or service — typically on a branded webpage. Today, many companies are using LinkedIn, Facebook, MySpace or one of the other social media sites to tell prospective customers about them and what they represent. These companies are building their “brand” online. The company can see how many people viewed their profile on any occasion and can post important advertising and marketing copy. In order to keep up the process however, takes daily monitoring. Companies won’t be succcessful for long if their content isn’t interesting and changing daily. Prospective customers want to know about the company, their products and services, their employees, their culture and many other bits of information about who this company is – so they can determine whether they will or will not do business with you.
At the end of the day, you might receive 10,000 visits to your site. Of those 10,000, maybe only 1,000 sign up for your free trial offer. Of those 1,000, only 250 enjoyed it so much they would be willing to pay a small fee. Of those 250, maybe only 75 will pay for the premium product. That means it took 10,000 referrals to obtain 75 premium sales. But just imagine what it would have cost you to obtain those 75 sales by other more traditional means! Growing social media presents a powerful way of reaching those 10,000 quickly.
Social Media has become very popular for use in search engine optimization. So much so that we at Social Media Training have developed training around SSEO (Social Search Engine Optimization). There is a big question circulating in the SEO world: will Social Media be replacing traditional Search Engine Results and Search Engine Optimization practices. Some experts say Social Media will replace SEO and others are saying SEO is here to stay. We think it’s a little of both! By 2014, eMarketer estimates that 65% of all US Internet users will be using social networks. And just to confirm how important this issue is, Google is now using in their guarded search algorithm, the “social graph” as a sign of trust and credibility.
There is no denying that social media at present is playing a vital role in the way users use the Internet nowadays. Everyone including kids, teenagers, seniors, news companies and business owners are participating in social networking websites. If you are currently trying to improve your website’s ranking through the use of search engine optimization then you might be interested to know that social media is now playing an important part in SEO.
Social Media Growth
Social Media Tips for SEO purposes
All SEO begins with content. The first step to creating backlinks is to write content that people will want to share. Articles that solve problems, provide a helpful resource, entertain, show innovation or even create controversy can all generate backlinks. Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and other social media websites are driven by the desire to share. One of the quickest ways to build social media credibility is to share excellent blog posts, video clips and other valuable online content. When you write content that will give Facebook and Twitter users or bloggers credibility just by sharing it, you’re going to generate quality backlinks which will improve your SEO.
Social media marketing improves Search Engine Optimization by way of getting a lot more traffic to go to your website and discuss your posts. Social networking websites like Facebook and Twitter are now being indexed by Google, Yahoo, Bing and others; so if you have more action on your website, then the greater you’ll be positioned in search results as the search engines favor active sites.
Establishing a presence on the top social media sites has never been more important.
Right now, you’ve got to have a presence on the Top social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube because they contain the most “authority” from a SEO standpoint because they influence Google’s social algorithm more than any other social media sites out there.
This will allow your site to gain more authority for target keywords on the search ranking result pages. Here are several other “easy to implement” tactics to improve SEO:
• Go to www.namechk.com and make sure you have locked down your brand.
• Add, increase and grow your followers, friends and contacts so that you increase your reach and visibility.
• Create compelling, customized profile pages. Add your social links to your Web site too.
• For those of you addicted to The Twitter, encourage Retweeting. Tweets are getting indexed by Google.
• Encourage “Liking”, “Tweeting” and “sharing” of pages, articles and valuable content from your web site.
• Contribute actively to other blogs and forums by commenting on articles related to your area of focus.
• Consider doing some guest blogging with links back to your own blog.
In conclusion, Social Media is more than just a trend – it is a paradigm shift for SEO and should be integrated as one of your key strategies to getting found on the Internet.
About the Author: Richard Diamond is a Director at Social Media Training, Inc. and has 20 years experience in integrated marketing. Social Media Training educates busy executives on how to implement results based social media marketing programs. They train thousands of people every month from around the world. Learn the Business Case for Social Media this Thursday at 1:00 Eastern. Register Here Today!
When building your social media profiles and developing your content for distribution, it is important to keep your personal brand in mind. Social media has presented us with so many opportunities to grow our personal brand equity. I’m only covering a few here today but will cover others in the near future.
What is Personal Branding? Personal branding is, in essence, a means to package yourself in such a way as to present a particular image for business or career purposes. It is the way you market yourself to your peers and prospects.
Think about these key areas when building your personal brand:
Picture Is your photo a professional looking picture. What happens on the internet stays on the internet so be careful which photos you post on Facebook, Flickr and other photo sharing sites.
Portfolio If you have published articles, books or other work, make sure to highlight them and link to them if you can. Big brand builder here!
Logo, color & tagline Do you have a logo or tag line? If not, think about creating them. They will give you instant credibility and add to your brand equity. Also, watch this video to understand the value of color and its relationship to your personal brand. SocialMediaVideos.org
Web site/blog Does FREE mean anything to you? Start a free blog at WordPress or another site. Keep it up to date and keep it focused to build your brand. If you are putting yourself out there as an expert in starting a business, don’t spend too much time blogging about Fortune 500 stuff. Also, register your own personal web site if you haven’t already. And get the email package too so you can provide the nice professional touch of firstname.lastname@example.org. GoDaddy is an affordable choice here.
Business card If you don’t yet have your own personal business card, get on it. This should have your personal details including your cell phone, personal email and your personal branding statement or tag line. Try VistaPrint for affordable cards.
Bio Keep your Bio up to date so you can forward it out to journalists prior to an interview or to other stakeholders when needed.
Facebook, Twitter customization Get your social media profiles customized to match your personal branding look and feel. It’s cheap or you can do it yourself if you have some patience. Try MyCorporateMedia if you need help with this.
Using social media is an ideal way to build your personal brand, to expand and reinforce your network, and to increase your brand’s value. Your efforts will be noticed immediately and will pay major dividends now and in the future.
Business Development, Telemarketing, and Sales professionals battle everyday to find ways to get past the gatekeeper. In the emerging market of Social Media many professionals are leaving this untapped opportunity on the table.
Social Media has eliminated the gatekeeper in most cases. How long will this window remain open know one knows, but it’s open.
Here are some of the ways to go straight to the decision maker using Social Media.
1. Utilize the search system of LinkedIn, you can often find the decision maker you are looking for by adding the right keywords. You can then either direct message them or pay for an in-mail account and send them a direct message as well. Often times the persons contact information will be on their LinkedIn profile.
2. Join target market groups on LinkedIn and Facebook. Again utilize the search application to find decision makers or even find those who work at a specific company who can give you the information you need to contact your target.
3. Find them on twitter using search.twitter.com and send them a message to their personal account or to the staff member who runs the corporate twitter account.
These are just some of the ways that Business Development, Telemarketing, and Sales professionals can find decision makers using social media.
Bonus if you don’t currently use Jigsaw you should check it out. You can find countless contacts with phone numbers, email, etc.
So what ways do you use Social Media to get past the gatekeeper?
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