Tag Archives: Reach

The 3 Most Important Factors For Growing Your Social Media Community

It seems that almost daily we come across social media marketers, enthusiasts and brands that still seem to have limited understanding of social media best practices. Often the social media “consultant” is even missing key factors in their own social presence that hinders their community, reach and growth. You’d think we would be beyond this in 2014, but sadly that is not the case.

How to grow a social communityWhen it comes to growing your social community there are three main factors that either propel or restrict your growth of your engaged, targeted audience. These three “buckets” are not the sole factors for growing a targeted audience, however they are the most important items you need to start with.

Let’s be clear and point out that the information within this post is specifically speaking to the marketer, brand or business professional that uses social media for marketing of any type. If you are social networking without a business purpose, and therefore not doing social media or social marketing, this information does not apply to you directly, however it is our professional opinion that you should still read and consider changes to what you are doing.

The 3 Most Important Factors In Community Growth:

1) Profile

One of the first things people do when you follow or friend them on a specific social network is look at your Profile. If you have not strategically completed your bio and information details properly, you are dramatically hindering the connections you make. Since there are so many social networks, we will focus on Twitter and Facebook as examples. Here are a few things you need to consider.

Twitter is one of the most informal, effective social platforms. Being human is extremely important if you’re going to be effective. Below are some of the biggest mistakes we see on Twitter profiles:

a) Privacy – If you’re doing social media, do not lock your privacy setting. Your community will never grow.

b) Profile pic – No pic, no follow. It’s that simple. Beyond making sure you have a profile pic, you need to consider whether you are an established brand or just starting out. People connect with people, not brands, logos or companies they’ve never heard of. Give them a human to connect with, rather than a logo they’ve never heard of.

c) Name – That’s great that your Twitter handle is @WhoTheHeckCares, but who are YOU? We see so many Twitter accounts with a great pic, and in the name field the person just put their Twitter handle again. Tell people your name. At the very least your first name and put it in the NAME field in Twitter. That’s why it’s there.

d) Bio – If you want people to be interested in you and what you do, make it easy for them to know you and what you do. All too often we see Twitter bio’s that contain cryptic tag lines, garbled incoherent sentences or no information at all. You need to know that you are leaving your potential followers confused and they are moving on instead of connecting with you.

Facebook is a social network with multiple profile types, such as a personal profile and business or community pages. These different account type are truly different and need to be managed as though they are. It is also extremely important to understand that business IS personal. The days of separating these two things are long gone. People do business with people, not faceless brands.

a) Personal Profile – When you lock your personal Facebook profile down, you are limiting your potential connections with prospective customers. Be sure your profile security settings let prospective connections get a sense of who you are and what you do.

b) Your BusinessfacebookprofileAll too often people add their business or employer to their profile hastily without intent. This leaves their business page not connected and opens a default Facebook profile for the mentioned company in your profile. This default tells nobody anything about the company or what it does and makes it impossible to build a following. Check your personal profile to ensure you have connected it to your business page. (see example to the right)

b) Facebook Business Pages – Fill out all of the profile information, and write it in a way that someone unfamiliar with you or your business will understand. Be sure your cover photo adds to the messaging and understanding of what you do, so when someone visits your page, they “get it” quickly and decide to connect.

2) Stream

a) Value – For the love of everything holy, you need to realize that social media is not direct sales, telemarketing or email spam. It is about earning relationships. When people check your social streams and find only content and messaging that is all about you, your brand, products or services, most will run. You must be selfless and realize it’s not about you, but your audience. Post content that they find interesting and relevant that is not about you, and you will earn the right to pitch your stuff to a receptive audience. Fail at this and you will get far fewer connections than you could.

b) Frequency – I heard a social media agency owner tell me last week that they were told that posting more than three times per day on any social platform was not a good idea. Really? Who told you that? Their response – “A social media guru that was speaking at an event we attended.”

Let me be really clear here. This is not 2005. If you are only posting 3 times a day on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin or any other social platform, NOBODY is seeing anything you post. You have to have relevant, valuable, interesting content that YOU post, not Retweet or click Share, all day, every day. Yes, the volumes differ from platform to platform, but 3 posts isn’t the number on ANY of them.

3) Engagement

a) Conversations & Relationships – The other thing a potential social connection will typically do when reviewing your newsfeeds is look for engagement. They want to know that if they connect with you or your brand, you respond, thank, get into conversations and relationships ensue. This is SOCIAL media remember. It’s not spam media or pitch my stuff media. Be social and leverage the media and you will get many more connections and a growing social community.

When someone considering connecting with you or your brand on social media, they will unconsciously cycle through your profile, your bio and your streams. Using what they see, they quickly determine whether they want to connect with you. Focus on these three important factors and see your community grow faster than you have before.

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Filed under Agency, Audience, Community, connection, Content, Engagement, Facebook, Followers, Marketing, Relationship, Social Media, Social Media Marketing, Twitter

Three Important Components Of Content Marketing

Important Components for Effective Content Marketing Content creation and content marketing has become a crucial element to any digital marketing effort. The transition from big brand only tactic to common place for all online marketers has and will continually expand. Using content for search engine placement and optimization, social network exposure and traffic is quickly becoming a must have component in any online marketing strategy.

While there are certainly many components to effective content marketing, here are three buckets that really require attention and preparation.

Content Creation –

In order to conduct content marketing effectively, you have to create content for your target audience that has relevant value.

  1. Who – Do you know who your target audience is? Be very clear about exactly who you are trying to reach with the content you create.
  2. What – Do you know the challenges your target audience is facing and/or the type of content that drives their interests online? Create compelling content that addresses their challenges and connects to their interests. Create content that speaks to them, not always about you.
  3. When – How consistently and frequently are you creating content?

“Create content that speaks to them, not always about you.”  Tweet:

Promotion/Distribution –

It’s one thing to create content, it’s wholly something different to promote it and get traffic to it.

  1. Channels – Know the online channels where your audience spends most of their time. Be highly active in those channels with consistent, relevant, selfless content that is not yours. By providing relevant, curated content consistently, you will earn the right to promote your created content.
  2. Community – The more consistently and frequently you create content, the larger and faster your community will grow. That includes your social following, subscribers to your blog and organic search reach.
  3. Tools – If you are active in all the right channels, providing selfless value to your audience and therefore built a large and loyal community, you need to ensure that you have an effective tool stack that helps you distribute your content to friends, followers and advocates.

Our tool stack incorporates Hootsuite, Bundle Post, Bundlet, Triberr and our email newsletter system. You want to be sure that the tool stack you are using is highly efficient and effective. Be sure that the tools allow you to promote your new content when it’s published, but can also manage that content for addition postings into social media easily and with strategy. You’ll definitely want the ability to seamlessly track when you shared the content last and schedule it repeatedly moving forward to ensure the optimum reach, traffic and exposure long-term. Social Content Management Is Important!!

Conversion –

Experienced content marketers know why they are creating the content they produce. They understand their objectives, processes and they track it to ensure the goals are being achieved. If they are not, they make changes to the process and do it again. Are you doing this?

  1. Objective – Do you know the goal and objective for your content? Have you planned, developed and tested what happens to the traffic your drive to your content?
  2. Process – Do you have a well thought out process and supporting mechanics to convert the traffic to your content into leads, customers, inquiries or subscribers?
  3. Tracking – Are you tracking the traffic to your content and measuring important metrics to determine what is working and what isn’t?

Although content marketing and content creation do not rise to the level of rocket science, they are both highly specialized components of today’s digital marketing requirements.

What are additional components that you utilize within your online marketing efforts?

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Filed under Community, Content, content creation, Curation, Hootsuite, Marketing, Social content management, Social Media, Social Media Content, Social Media Management, Social Media Marketing, social media tool, Tools

Questioning The Status Quo Of Content Marketing, Traffic, Social Reach and SEO

When it comes to blogs, content creation and digital marketing, most content marketers are trying to achieve one main thing – TRAFFIC. You develop quality content for your audience in the hopes that you can generate new traffic and then repeat traffic that returns often. Mostly this is done through SEO, social reach and email subscriptions that connect your created content with those that find it interesting, relevant and valuable.

For the professional blogger, big brands or content sites, all of this comes together through high volumes of frequent new content, multiple authors and massive traffic. With very little budget, the average business, marketer or brand is often competing in all Status Quo of SEO and Content Marketingareas of online marketing, including social media, SEO and email subscribers in an uphill battle for eyeballs. The resulting content marketing, social media and search quandary becomes a high school-like popularity contest with few winners.

Popular content becomes the driver without regard for quality and social media becomes flooded with people sharing the same piece of marginal content. The social graph is flooded every day with shares of blogs, articles and news from the same sites and writers, which often contain tired, reused story ideas. Does this sound familiar?

Here are some questions we are asking ourselves:

  • For Social Marketers:

1) Is there a difference between recent/popular and recent/relevant content?

2) If curating recent/popular content drives more clicks and shares, does it also result in the desired engagement and relationships with your target audience?

3) Does curating the same popular content sources/authors day after day achieve real net results?

  • For Content Creators:

1) Is most popular search results benefiting the content creator as much as driving Pay Per Click competition for an advertising platform?

2) Does “tribal” sharing really achieve measurable results, clicks, views and expanded social reach of/by your intended audience?

3) Does the status quo effectively get your content in front of both your target audience and those that need it for curation?

Should the Status Quo Somehow Evolve?

As we continually ponder these questions at Bundle Post, we are also considering answers that have the opportunity to level the playing field between big brands, content sites and the average blogger, writer and brand.

  • Are there more questions we should be asking?
  1. What would it look like if content marketing, blog traffic and SEO were turned on its head to better benefit content creators, curators and the content consumer?
  2. What if there was an easier way for content creators to get their content in the hands of those that need to curate it, thereby expanding their social reach with their actual target audience?
  3. What if all the great content that is often undiscovered could better compete with the recent/popular content sites?
  4. How would content marketing, SEO and traffic evolve effectively if most recent/relevant quality content, not popularity became the bar?
  5. How can something like the Bundle Post RSS Project be used to positively impact brands, curators, consumers and social media marketers?

We are purposefully not answering some of the questions because we want to know what you think. We’d love your input and ideas.

 

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Filed under Blog, Brand, Content, Curation, Results, RSS Feed, SEO, Social Media, Social Media Content, Social Media Marketing

Hey Facebook – Instead Of Repeating Posts I’ve Already Liked, How Bout…

Yesterday morning I was catching up on my far too many, overnight Facebook notifications. As I finished my follow-up on comments, likes and tags I attempted to whirl through my newsfeed to see what everyone was up to. Scrolling, refreshing and opening various pics and articles I began to consciously notice something that I have unconsciously been aware of for several months. Repeated status updates in my feeds. Have you noticed this?

“I have a really good idea Facebook. How bout instead of putting hundreds of updates in my newsfeed that I have already seen/liked, instead you put the content from all those pages I have liked that you say can’t fit in my stream anymore because you can only display a certain amount of posts everyday in a users newsfeed… ‪#‎Rocketscience‬”

I have shared this YouTube video a lot recently, because it really breaks down the issues Facebook has really well. It will give you a really good perspective on what’s happening and why.

If there really was an issue with too much content and status updates that are relevant for users that Facebook page owners and brands need to pay Facebook to access users they have already paid to acquire, why are we being shown the same content over and over in our feeds? Shouldn’t Facebook show us the content from the pages we have liked instead of this useless duplication?

This among many reasons is why I think brands, marketers and social media agencies need to reevaluate their Facebook and over all social media marketing strategies. Not the WHAT or HOW, but the level of involvement using Facebook pages. Increasing activity and effectiveness on other social networks where your audience is at the highest concentration makes a lot of sense, even outside of the recent Facebook mess.

And here’s another question for Facebook…  Do you realize that you are killing yourself?

For more on my thoughts on this and what you can/should be doing given the changes to Facebook, read Facebook Declining Page Reach: 9 Experts Weigh In

What are YOU doing differently with Facebook pages?

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Filed under Agency, Content, Facebook, Fanpage, Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Marketing

Adjust 3rd Party App Settings In Facebook To Extend Your Personal Reach

If you are like most experienced social media marketing aficionado’s, in addition to business pages, you are also using your personal Facebook profile to build business connections and foster relationships. Again, if you’re experienced in social media marketing, you’re probably using a social media dashboard tools and applications like Hootsuite and Instagram to post some of your updates to that personal Facebook profile.

But did you know that many third part Facebook applications default your posts to friends only? It’s true…

So all that marketing, hashtagging and content posting using Hootsuite, Instagram, and other social media applications is not reaching outside of your designated friend list on Facebook.

I would liken this to the equivalence of having your Twitter account set to private, or at least never showing the bulk of your content to non-followers. This will not extend your reach, grow your connections or make your hashtags effective outside of your existing connections. Tell me how this makes sense for a social media marketing professional? It doesn’t…  People connect with people and do business with people they know and like. But you already know this.

So now that we know most third party applications default to friends only when posting on Facebook, the question remains – How do we adjust third party application settings to default posts to public instead of friends only?

Facebook Hootsuite Settings

Here are the simple steps:

1) click on the gear icon at the top right of the Facebook navigation bar.

2) Click the account settings option.

3) Click “Apps” from the left menu bar.

4) Find the third party applications you’d like to change to public.

5) Click the “visibility” drop down and select “Public” for that application.

You’re done!

From now on, all posts sent from that third party application will be viewable by everyone, dramatically extending your personal social media reach on Facebook beyond your friends and making your personal Facebook social media management more expansive.

*note – We made these setting changes for ourselves in order to increase the reach and effectiveness of our personal marketing efforts using Hootsuite and Bundle Post on Facebook. As we looked through the apps section, we noticed several other applications that also needed changing in the same manner. We suspect you will too.

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Filed under App, Bundle Post, Facebook, Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Management, Social Media Marketing, Twitter

1 + 1 = 30,000 In Social Media – Three Ways To Extend Your Reach

Social media is a funny thing. The math within social media marketing works as if it is out in the cosmos, where time and space are bent. What am I talking about? Well, some of the normal math found in business, either it just isn’t applicable in social media or the normal way we think about calculating it offline is very different to how it actually works within the social graph.

Years ago we heard that if you had an unhappy customer they would tell 10 people and how damaging that would be to your company. They said if you created a happy customer, they would at least tell 1 to 2 people. Boy have those days disappeared!

With social media the math is just a bit different. An unhappy customer now days tells their 1,000 Facebook friends. Several of those share the story and picture to their 500 friends EACH. Additionally, the unhappy customer tells their 2,200 Twitter followers, and many of them RT your post to their followers. It doesn’t take too long before social media math has hammered your failing with a customer to 30,000+ people. Did I mention this all occurred in just a few seconds? Do you understand it will continue on for several more days if it is a bad enough issue, with images and blog posts growing from the buzz?

Yes there are down sides to social media and the arithmetic can be troublesome when you screw things up, but the upside of the medium far out weighs the negative possible scenarios if you do things right! Social media math means that when one person shares your one post, that can equate to 30,000 people being exposed to you, your brand and its content.

Use Social Media Math to Extend Your Reach:

What do I mean by extending your reach? Well just as in the negative example above, you can extend your follower, friend and fan base extensively when your content is shared. This is why a well thought out social media content strategy is so important. An effective social media marketing program that has content at its core is a must!

There are three main goals you should have for the content you post in social media:

1) Conversation – The content you create and/or post to your feeds should be relevant, valuable and interesting to your target market. When you are getting this right, it will often spark conversations or opportunities for conversations with your target audience. Conversations around relevant content will do three important things: 1) Build relationships with your prospects 2) Create opportunities to drive ROI 3) Extend the reach of your brand due to their friends and followers now seeing you in their feeds.

2) Shares/Likes –  Just like conversations, when the content you post is shared by your friends, fans and followers you realize a significant jump in potential viewership. The more your content is shared, the more a few key things occur: 1) Extended reach and visibility of your brand and content 2) Community growth occurs as some of that extended reach decide to friend, like and follow you also 3) The number of clicks/views of the content you shared will increase.

3) Action – Ultimately the goal of a social media marketing program, when done properly is to create end result actions that achieve a return on the investment made. The more effective you are at doing number 1 and 2 above, the more people will want to know more about what YOU do. This often culminates in review your account bio, information page and clicking through to your site, pages or other links. Furthermore, doing these things effectively will also spark inquiries and opportunities for deals right within the social graph.

Take the time and invest the required resources to understand your target market and develop an appropriate content strategy. That strategy must be a consistent daily stream that takes into account the above extended reach elements for the best results.

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Filed under Facebook, Relationship, Social content management, Social Media, Social Media Content, Social Media Management, Social Media Marketing, Social Media ROI, Strategy