Category Archives: Social Media

Social media is not for everyone

Social media is not for everyone.  That is not a popular statement among some in
the marketing field.  If you are deep into social media the tendency is believe that it will work for everyone.

 

The fact is that there are certain business segments where social media is shunned and for good reason.  Certain industries or business segments with high security concerns may not embrace social media.  This is appropriate – their customers do not live in the social media universe so why should they?  There are so many industries that can benefit from social media there is no need to force it on those with whom it does not resonate.

 

As a “VP of Marketing for hire” my job is not to force one solution or marketing tactic on every client just because I like it and find it successful.  My job is to create and execute a marketing plan that will achieve my client’s goals.

 

Food for thought…

 

-KK


I use social media because….

…it facilitates connections.

There are several reasons to use social media for business. Whether you use it to gain industry knowledge; make new connections; keep an eye on the competition or see what your clients are saying, the underlying reason should be about relationships.  At their core, social media tools exist to facilitate relationships and connection.

I use social media to do the following:

  • Increase my sphere of influence in hopes to find new connections
  • Nurture some of those new connections into online relationships
  • Connect with some of those relationships ILR (in real life)
  • Learn form people who are smarter than me (the list is long)
  • Gain new industry knowledge
  • Contribute my experience and expertise
  • Increase awareness of my consulting business and my blog

The tools I primarily use are LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.  For many clients I also use YouTube, Vimeo and Flickr.

What are your reasons for using social media tools?

-KK


The Weight of Words

Did I Say That?

I read several articles and blog posts today about the marketing firm employee who Tweeted on behalf of Chrysler.  I won’t rehash the entire story (you can read it here).  

He meant to send a Tweet through his personal account and accidentally sent it through the Chrysler account.  His Tweet read: “I find it ironic that Detroit is known as the #motorcity and yet no one here knows how to (expletive) drive.” A horrible mistake that cost him his job and his employer the Chrysler business.

@pwilson wrote a great blog post today talking about the power of our words.  Whether you are Tweeting, talking, writing or any other form of communication your words hold power.  They have the power to harm or to help. 

– Reality check –

How are you using your words when communicating with…

  • Your staff?
  • Your clients?
  • You vendors?
  • Your family?
  • Others?

Something to think about…

-KK

P.S. As a marketing professional who manages several social media accounts this affects me on many levels.  I will save that post for another day.


Hashtag Mash

A hashtag is the “#” symbol followed by a keyword that Twitter users use to follow a particular set of tweets.  They can be used to follow a topic, an event, a business, a person or just about anything else you could think of.

Hashtags can benefit small business owners in the following ways:

1. Create a company hashtag. 
You can create a hashtag as part of your branding strategy.  As your company Tweets under the official Twitter handle it can add a hashtag at the end.  When anyone retweets your post it will include the hashtag and you can gauge how much your company is talked bout on Twitter. The goal is to get your brand ambassadors to Tweet on your behalf and use the official hashtag as well.

2. Start a topic and follow the trend.
Just like an official company hashtag you can create a hashtag for a campaign, product or service.

3. Follow an existing topic on Twitter. 
This will save you time and help to narrow down relevant Tweets for you to read.

What other ways do you use hashtags for business? Chime in and let me know!

Need more information on hashtags?  Follow me and send me a Tweet!  http://twitter.com/KKarel.

-KK


LinkedIn Direct Ads – Test 2

Testing 1-2-3 – Again…

In November I began a test run of LinkedIn Direct Ads and wrote about it in this blog post. In the post I committed to posting an update. Here  it is…

The success of the campaign was not as desirable as I had hoped.  I was pleased with the number of impressions but the CTR was extremely low. On many levels I expected this because my audience size was very small (started with about 1000).  

If you read my blog you know that I believe in the Review and Revise philosophy.  You will not get the results you want unless you continually review campaign performance and make revisions to improve results.  I turned my LinkedIn campaign off for a month or so and recently turned it back on with the following significant changes.

  • Deactivated 2 out of 4 ad variations that did not get any results
  • Changed headline on one of the remaining ad variations
  • Created a new ad variation with a new headline and slightly revised copy
  • Increased my audience size from 1000 to 3300
  • Increased my bid (still deciding if I think leads from LinkedIn are worth the CPC rate)

I’ll post another update in a few weeks.  In the meantime, I will continue to review and revise the campaign to achieve optimal results. I would love to hear your experience with LinkedIn Direct Ads. Post your comments.

Looking for results…

~KK


Social Media is not…

Social media is not a stand-alone strategy

Having a social media component in your overall marketing strategy is a key element to success.  But if social media is your only strategy – at worst it is doomed to fail and at best you will just be spinning your wheels.

Marketing is about telling your story – the story of your product and your company. I coach my clients to use social media to help promote, educate and spark conversation about their story.  Social media helps us to get more personal with our clients and customers. Social media can extend our reach beyond what it can be without it.  Social media can help us make new connections.

If social media helps us promote our company story that means we must already be telling our story. As a small business owner you are living out your company story daily. The question becomes, are you communicating it effectively?

Don’t know the answer? Ask a marketing coach. I’m available.

-KK


Thursday Threads

Social Media Do’s and Don’t’s for Small Business

     

    • DO set realistic expectations and goals for your social media strategy
      • DON’T assume that you will not get leads for your social media efforts
    • DO have a solid, well-planned strategy
      • DON’T let your strategy become robot-like
    • DO seek out help to execute your strategy   
      • DON’T be afraid of the technology (that’s why you get help)
    • DO push yourself to get the most out of social media   
      • DON’T over commit yourself with an unachievable strategy
    • DO contribute to the conversation in a meaningful way
      • DON’T only Tweet about your latest blog post or your products
    • DO look for people you know and connect with them through social media
      • DON’T assume they will all be as focused as you might be
    • DO be deliberate in getting your message out there
      • DON’T be repetitive
    • DO remember that what you say will always be “out there”    
      • DON’T let that stop you from being authentic

    See you next Monday…

    -KK


    Say What?

     Social Media Guidelines for Your Brand

    On Wednesday I talked about achieving brand consistency on a budget.  Common voice (tone, wording, etc.) is a key element in brand consistency. The great thing about consistency of voice in social media is that it does not cost much, if any, cash.  It does require a time and thought investment.

    Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn all have status updates.  This is not news. 

    What may be news to many small business owners is that you can easily set your Twitter status to appear on your LinkedIn and Facebook status plus on your blog too (depending on what blogging service you use). This is one way to be sure your voice and messaging is consistent across all platforms.

    This may get a little tricky if there is more than one person engaged in social media on behalf of your company but it is achievable.  Here is where the time and thought investment comes in.  This can be done by establishing guidelines for any representative of your company to who engages in social media. 

    Keep these things in mind when establishing social media guidelines:

    1. Be clear on the voice of the company
    2. Be clear on your policy to engage (or not engage) negative comments
      1. You may want to designate one person to be the voice in these situations
    3. Don’t make the guidelines too narrow so that you squash the individual’s voice
      1. Especially about things unrelated to your brand
      2. But…don’t make them too loose either
    4. Don’t make efforts so coordinated that everyone is saying the exact same thing
      1. Like automated Tweets to multiple accounts
      2. It can get boring and your audience will lose interest
    5. Add guidelines specific to your brand…

    As always, I encourage you to seek the help of a marketing coach.  They can help guide you in the right direction.

    If you would like to learn how to link your updates feel free to email me.

    Working to add value…

    -KK


    Throwing up Facebook

    Throwing up a Facebook page is not a strategy

    Even a great Facebook page by itself is not a strategy. It is a component of your Social Media plan which is only one component of your overall marketing strategy

    There have been many bloggers recently talking about examples of great Facebook pages. Check out this blogger’s Top 35 list from July 30. Most are well-known brands with deeper pockets than the average small business but that does not mean pages for small businesses have to be boring.

    Included on this list is BlackBerry. I like their page because it integrates a tool accessible to everyone: YouTube.  A small business could incorporate a YouTube video and some well done graphics to create an attractive, dynamic Facebook page.   

    As mentioned frequently in this blog, if you need help with your marketing strategy, including your Facebook page, contact a marketing coach/professional. They can help you create and execute a solid strategy and help you avoid the pitfalls of going down the wrong path.

    I am continually looking for ways to improve the effectiveness of Facebook.  If you have a success story to share please post a comment.

    Always looking to improve…

    -KK


    Chop and Grind

    My husband and I have a blended family with four teenagers. When we married over 3 ½ years ago: our kids were teens and pre-teens. We went into it with eyes open knowing it would be challenging and did everything we could to prepare ahead of time.

    We were not prepared.

    Whoever came up with the phrase “blended family” obviously never had one.  To me blending conjures up images of a smooth fusion of two or more elements.  My blender is broken – sometimes it is stuck on chop and grind.

    Sometimes small business owners have a blender that is also stuck on chop and grind. Blending “old school” marketing and the new social marketing world of today can be messy and many get it wrong. Having a well-planned social media strategy out of the starting gate can help that blender move past chop and grind into smooth fusion.

    Here are some tips to help you blend more smoothly:

    1. Define who you are trying to reach (old school)
    2. Identify the social media platforms in which you wish to engage (new world)
    3. Research your audience on those platforms (old school and new world)
    4. Listen to (read) what they are saying (old school)
    5. Find your “voice” for the medium (old school and new world)
      1. Note: Do not just push your product or business – remember you must contribute value to the conversation)
    6. Learn from the mistakes you will make (old school and new world)
    7. Review and revise your strategy as you gain more knowledge and followers, fans, friends, connections, etc. (new world)
    8. Seek help in getting started if you need it (old school and new world)
      1. Find a social media coach to guide you

    Still blending…

    -KK


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