Archive for the Social Media Strategy Category

Big List of Social Media Support/Reference Links

Big List of Social Media Support

If you’re like most business learner, your bookmarks can be out of control. [Not that we know anything about that!] Hopefully this post will make some of those bookmarks go away in place of this one.

Let this post be your go-to place for where to find Social Media support, contact forms, forums and latest info.

*Up-to-date Social Media Image sizes*

SUPPORT
Twitter Support: https://support.twitter.com
Facebook Support: https://www.facebook.com/help/
Linkedin Support: http://help.linkedin.com/
Google +: https://support.google.com/plus/
YouTube: https://support.google.com/youtube/
Pinterest: http://help.pinterest.com/en
Instagram: https://help.instagram.com/

LATEST NEWS FOR EACH SOCIAL PLATFORM:
Twitter: https://media.twitter.com/
Linkedin: http://blog.linkedin.com/
http://marketing.linkedin.com/blog/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/communities/117826457344247074938
Facebook: http://newsroom.fb.com/
https://www.facebook.com/marketing
Known issues: https://www.facebook.com/help/487468894599804/
YouTube: http://youtube-global.blogspot.com
http://youtubecreator.blogspot.com/
Known issues: https://support.google.com/youtube/known-issues/16903
Pinterest: http://business.pinterest.com/
http://www.pinterest.com/pinterest/official-news/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/press/?hl=en

TYPICAL FACEBOOK ISSUES
Facebook Support Forum: https://www.facebook.com/help/community
Facebook not working properly? https://developers.facebook.com/tools/debug/
Report an Issue with FB Pages:  https://www.facebook.com/help/contact/164405897002583
Facebook Ads Help: https://www.facebook.com/business/contact-us
Your Page doesn’t come up in FB Search: https://www.facebook.com/help/contact/351451441588463
Request Multiple Locations for a Page (Parent-Child pages): https://www.facebook.com/help/contact/484355518286343
Report a Broken Feature:
https://www.facebook.com/help/326603310765065/
Report Copyright Infringement:
https://www.facebook.com/help/400287850027717/
Report Trademark Infringement:
https://www.facebook.com/help/440684869305015/

Hopefully you won’t need to use these too often, but if so, then I’m glad this list of Social Media Support and Reference Links help!

Current Social Media Image Sizes

Social Media Image Sizes

Trying to keep up with changes in social media image sizes is like keeping up with the Kardashians Jones’. It’s a constant research and update. I’m grateful when sites like Canvas can keep their image sizes up to date, but when you need to create something a little more robust, you need to be on top of what these sizes are.

Feel free to bookmark this page and share!

**We will be updating these sizes as they change**

FACEBOOK

Banner: 851 x 315
Profile Image: 180 x 180 (but shows 160 x 160)
Ad: *see image below…
Link Image: 1200 x 627
Shared Image: 1200 x 1200
Tab: 111 x 74

The image for Facebooks ads can very depending on type of ad. This image comes from Facebook for Business:

Facebook Ad Image Sizes

TWITTER

Banner: 1500 x 500
Profile Image: 400 x 400
Shared Image: 1024 x 512
Ad Image: 600 x 150

LINKEDIN

Banner: 646 x 220
Standard Logo: 100 x 60
Square Logo: 50 x 50
Sponsored Ads: 800 x 400

PINTEREST

Profile Image: 600 x 600
Board Thumbnail: 222 x 150
Pin: 600 x [no limit]

INSTAGRAM

Profile Image: 161 x 161
Image from Photoshop/Lightbox: ideally 1080 x 1080

GOOGLE+

Profile Image: 250 x 250
Banner: 2120 x 1192
Feed Image: 250 x 250 (minimum)

YOUTUBE

Profile Image: pulled from Google+
Channel Art: 2560 x 1224
Custom Video Thumbnail: 1280 x 720

If there other image sizes you feel are missing from this list, please comment and I’ll be happy to add them.

Common Social Media Mistakes for Businesses

Social Media Mistakes

Social media as a main stream marketing strategy has been in practice for a few years now. Whether a company is new at this concept or they have been doing it “like a pro,” there are still social media mistakes that continue to pop up by users. These mistakes can cost a business greatly. Let’s look at 10 of the most common mistakes out there.

  • Posting too many times about your services/products within a small time window will turn your followers off. Try spreading your posts out (Buffer is a great tool for this) and sticking to something similar to the 80/20 rule. That is 80% about your industry and 20% about your business offerings.
  • “Advertising” your business on another business’ Facebook page is rude and tacky. You’re not actually getting read by their followers, but you are going to help progress some negative word-of-mouth marketing by those companies you do that to. Remember it’s a person running that other Facebook account.
  • Creating automatic posts without staying in touch with the temperature of your audience. If you’ve created a status update about what a fun, loving community/followers you have and something in the news comes up about a child abduction, you’re going to look very impersonal and out of touch with reality.
  • Talking but not listening will kill any progress you might make on your social media platforms. You’re online and now your followers want to be socialable. Don’t leave them hanging. Answer questions…respond to comments…just be present!
  • When connecting with others on LinkedIn don’t use the default message. Make it personal. Send a message about where you might have met them, heard them talk, or others who you both might know.
  • Do not spam others through private messages. If you use DM’s on Twitter to shout your pitch, you’ll get unfollowed. If you send a private message to share a spammy ad on Facebook, it’ll get deleted with no response. Call the business and find out who you need to talk to and talk with that person. Leave your social media sites to promote others (first) then yourself properly.
  • Just because there are hundreds of social media platforms available, doesn’t mean your business needs to have an active account on all of them. Remember you’re trying to reach a particular type of fan. You need to ask, “Where are they and how can we use that platform to our best ability?” Then knock it out of the park!
  • Online newsletters should never be sent to anyone that has not opted into your subscriber list. Yes, that means just because you met someone and exchanged business cards, does not mean they qualify as a subscriber.
  • Your online voice can be read many different ways. What you may think is tongue-in-cheek humor can be completely rude and a turn off to half your audience. Become familiar on when to sound professional and when to be more casual with your posts.
  • Be careful with double-posting. Don’t always have the same posts on Twitter that you would have on your LinkedIn or Facebook account. They have different “voices” and you need to give variety.

Trends will always change, but etiquette is a constant. Be sure that you are thinking of what is best for your (potential) customers, not what is best for your sales figures.

 

How to Get Noticed on Pinterest

How to Get Noticed on PinterestPinterest has been around for a few years now and most everyone feels they have a grasp on this fun platform. However, have you noticed there are some that just seem to get all the attention? You’re posting the same information and it’s great content, so why them and not you? Let’s double check that you’ve crossed your T’s and dotted your I’s.

Optimize your images.

This crucial step is what will make the biggest difference in what others consider “pin worthy”.

1.  When creating your photos use the 2:3 ratio rule. By making the image vertical, rather than horizontal, it will fit the Pinterest board better; which will give you more attention. (Pre-pin your posts to a secret board to see what it will look like before pinning to the board of your choice.)
2.  Use photos/graphics/text that is visually enticing. For example, if you use an image with a busy background, that image can get overlooked by viewers.
3.  Make it easy for your readers to Pin your posts – have a Pin button handy for each image.

Use analytics to take action.

What boards are getting the most attention? What do your followers like best about your pins? There are a couple of way to help you with this:

1.  Be sure to Verify your Website – this is the only way you can view Pinterest’s analytics. This Getting Started Guide is a great step-by-step instruction on how to verify your website.
2.  Find out what posts are being Pinned. There are two ways to do this:

    • You can type the following URL: http://pinterest.com/source/YourDomain.com  – or –
    • A less manual way is to use PinAlerts. PinAlerts sends you email notifications. When signing up you can select how frequently you want to receive these notifications. The emails will show you what was pinned, who pinned it, the date/time, and the name of the board they pinned it to.

Finding out these results will help you hone the posts that seem to resound with your listeners.

Tell your readers where to find you!

It seems very simple, but your eyes only see what it wants to see. Help your readers out. A few ideas on where you should highlight your Pinterest account:

  • Facebook (about page or creating a tab with your pins is a great idea)
  • Blog main page AND posts
  • Newsletters/eBlasts
  • Any marketing/packaging material if you sell a product
  • Join Facebook Groups for Pinterest enthusiasts
  • Cross Pin with Twitter/Facebook/Google+

Be available. A thank-you, a repin, and commenting goes a long way with building your followers. Remember to enjoy your Pinning experience! If you aren’t having fun, your readers will know it.  Pin On!

5 Ways to Add a Physical Heartbeat to Your Digital Presence

Humanizing your digital voice is a must now days. Long gone are the companies that churn and burn through their sales leads on a great product alone. Customers want a relationship with their providers and if you don’t give that to them, your competitor will be happy to step in and take them. It’s about showing that potential client that you care about their needs and they are important to you.  They need to feel it, hear it, and see it.

Let’s talk about some basic steps to keep in mind as you approach this concept with your company:

1. Talk WITH your customers; not AT them.
There are enough companies that annoy their audience online, on tv and on radio. Don’t be that company. Megaphone marketing doesn’t build relationships. You can’t be a solution provider if you’re too busy talking. Relationships are formed through conversations.

2. Stop forcing your language onto your customers.
Your followers are not a part of your corporate team so why talk to them as if they are? Speak the language they use and understand. Throwing out acronyms may make you feel like you know your product, but you’ve lost your customer.  This also includes how you talk to your audience. Arrogance has no place in your digital space. Word of mouth comes from both a great product and a humble and passionate team.

3. Research your approach.
There are so many approaches to reaching your audience digitally. You need to find the strategy that works best for your target audience and future customers. Here a few things to keep in mind while researching your strategy:

  • How successful companies are doing it – If they have a proven record, glean from their experience and apply it to your objectives.
  • One size does not fit all – Keep in mind that just because “Joe Blow” is on every digital platform does not mean that it is applicable for your situation.
  • Give your exec’s their own voice – With a strong social media policy in place, having your top executives online boosts your company’s presence and influence.
  • Show us real people…not just logos – Even if you are a business-to-business ran company, you’re reaching humans. Help them relate to you by giving them a face to look at.

4. Don’t give lip service.
If you say you are all about customer service, then you have a responsibility to go above and beyond in service. Don’t just publicly thank the big dogs…every customer is a gift. Treat them as such.

 5. Be the storytellers.
Talking about your brand through storytelling is a great way to connect with your audience emotionally. Those stories linger with them as they consider your company as a resource. Share photos and videos of your team. It’s more meaningful if they have a face to put with a name.

By keeping these foundational ideas at the forefront of your digital strategy, it will help you keep the human factor as part of your brand’s outreach.

Photo Credit: Alex Dram

Helpful Social Media Blogs

By a variety of counts, there are over 450 million “active” blogs. I get asked quite often which one’s are best for helpful social media information. There are some pretty good ones, but there are some tried and true that are my go-to’s.  There are some that I dig into for the meat of social media, but this list is not for that. This list includes blogs that are written by people who get to the point and help share what they’ve learned.

  1. Socialbrite – This site is written specifically for non-profits, however the information given is great for any business or individual who are looking to better their skills.
  2. Socialnomics – Erik can get heady sometimes, but all in all he shares great information. I feel safe in saying he is the king of statitsics and case studies.
  3. Heidi Cohen– Heidi’s blog is an “actionable” marketing blog, but that means she’s a well-rounded blogger that touches on everything needed to keep you up to snuff with integrated marketing tips.
  4. Pushing Social – Stanford specializes in blogging while integrating it with other social media outlets.
  5. Jeff Bullas – Jeff is pretty straightforward as far giving information that is digestible and manageable.

As already mentioned, there are a lot of options out there for helpful social media blogs, but if you haven’t checked out the above list, please do. It will be worth your while!

Photo credit: H is for Home

 

Traditional media vs. Social Media

Traditional media is not going away. Social media is not going away. Here’s a visual: traditional media is like the older brother who has to get used to his new, loud and intrusive brother. However, as with most siblings, they learn pretty quick how to work together to get what they want from their parents/audience.

Not sure how to integrate the two for your business? Here are 3 ideas to get you started on the right path:

Use traditional media to promote your social media presence. It takes 7 “touches” before a typical audience receives the message you’re trying to get out. Some ideas:

~QR code in a print ad directing them to one of your social media platform pages (FB fan page, Google + page). This is great if you’re having a contest.
~Put your Facebook page URL on your billboard/print ad.
~Don’t forget to add all your social media accounts to your invoices, service agreements, etc.

Test out a new product on your social media followers to get feedback before advertising through traditional media outlets. This lets your social media audience feel like they have a special voice in your company.

Promote changes you’re making in your product/service/company due to social media conversations with customers. This tells your customers that their opinions matter and you use social media to build relationship.

As with any kind of marketing strategies, you have to follow through. If you are going to tell your customers that “we’re listening to you!”, then you better go above and beyond that.

I hope these ideas start generating thoughts that are specific to your business culture. I’d love to hear how you are using both medias to reach your audience!

4 Bottom-line Social Media Strategies

The right direction

Which way do I go?“What should my social media strategy be?” Oy! I get asked that quite often. I know they would really like a 2-minute, secret-to-success answer, but there’s no way I could do that. I also get, “I hear that Joe Blow’s company is doing this and this…so we’re starting to do that too.” I always respond: “Why?” Then I get the proverbial stare with a few blinks.

Every business should have their own creative ideas and goals. Customer service should be your business and your services or products is how to you serve them. With that in mind here are four basic, bottom-line strategies that all companies should keep in mind:

1. C-suite / Upper management must believe…not just be “on board”. If a CEO is saying, “Sure we should use that social media…stuff,” they aren’t getting it. You’re going to spin your wheels running back and forth between implementing strategies and convincing your boss that it’s the right thing to do. Digital media marketing is time exhaustive as it is. Trying to justify what you’re doing to someone who doesn’t believe in it’s effectiveness will kill you.

2. Goals and strategy above tools. I have a friend who is deeply in love with her new iPad. The only problem is she doesn’t understand how to use the iPad for anything other than her apps. After six months, she’s just learned how to lock her screen. Using almost every social media tool out there but not having any idea of your SM goals is just about as silly. Do your research and find the tools that will help you reach your goals efficiently.

3. Build relationships! Please remember that SM marketing is about building customer loyalty. It’s not a big billboard in the sky for you to push your products/services on your audience. Talk to your customers and potential customers online. Build a rapport with peers in your field of expertise. Be a service provider for your audience.

4. Take solid measurements. Ok, so you took the time to build up a strategy and it’s been 6 months. How do you know what’s working and what’s not, if you don’t measure your steps? What are your stats telling you? Maybe you should stop blog posting on Monday and Wednesday and move it to Tuesday and Thursday, because that’s when it’s getting more hits. What kind of tweets are getting retweeted the most? These are the things that will tell you if you’re on target or if you need to change your strategy.

Social media is the constant, ever-changing beast. Make sure you know WHY you shouldn’t feed it after midnight or get it wet! 😉

Social Media Myths

Marketing StrategyThere is a lot of bad information out there and just as many assumptions. I’m floored what social media “experts” are sharing with clients.  I somehow feel compelled to take them under my wing and lead them to the light…so to speak.

I’ve highlighted some of the most misunderstood aspects of using social media in business:

1. It’s free! While a lot of the tools are free, the act of engaging various social media platforms is time-intensive. This is not just a one-time campaign…it’s a process that should become another foundational part of your marketing strategy.

2. I don’t need it. You’re right…if you want your company to grow stagnant. There are plenty of other businesses that want to build a relationship with your customers through social media. Are you willing to give them up?

3. Once it’s set up, I’m good to go.  See #1. An inactive social media account is a dead social media account.

4. This is another great way to sell my product. Yes and no. What social media is not: big billboard in the sky for ads, megaphone for yelling deals, replacement for email marketing. What social media is: a great way to service your customers, listening devices to hear what is being said about your company, engagement tools.

5. I still think that Social Media is just a fad.

Facebook: launched February, 2004
Twitter: launched July, 2006
LinkedIn: launched May, 2003
YouTube: launched November, 2005

Most fads don’t last 5 years or longer.  Those are just some of the top social media sites.

If you’re not ready to jump in with both feet, I would suggest at least listening to what is being said about your company within social media realms. In 2011, your company’s reputation depends upon it.

QR Codes – Don’t Forget Your Basics

What’s faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive?

It’s not SuperMan…it’s Digital Media!

Everywhere you go people are scrambling to stay on top of the latest app, WordPress plugin (Jetpack!), or greatest marketing strategy.

Unfortunately that means people are jumping in feet first and finding themselves up to their knees in digital quicksand. As simple as this list is, it’s worth keeping in mind as you research whether using QR codes is for you:

1. Who is your audience? You will have a better success rate on your ROE (Return On Engagement) if you target a particular group of people. Don’t go so broad on your scope of reach. You want it scalable.

2. What is your call of action? Don’t just put up a QR Code in your latest e-blast just to say you’ve done it. Give your call of action some meat. Instead of asking your audience to scan the code and check out your site, send them to a page that is a current campaign. When the campaign has reached it’s goal, that code can still be used for potential clients.

3. Where are you putting the QR codes? If you put it on a t-shirt people will have trouble scanning it because of the material. If you’re putting it on a slide, make sure the screen is flat and not an old fashion pull down – it can distort your code. Hint: using a URL shortener will allow a visually smaller code. Extra Hint: Please test the code before you make it live.

4. When should you use a QR code? Remember using a QR code is just another way to reach out to your audience and entice them to come to you. It’s a resource. Use them for campaigns, business cards, presentations, expo events, parties, etc. Be creative and fun!

5. Why should you add QR codes to your strategy? According to IDC, the growth of smartphone usage is expected to increase by 49.2% during 2011. There are stats upon stats that are staggering when it comes to potentional customers using smartphones like laptops.  So do you want to reach them where they’re at or not? 😉

I love hearing all the various ways that companies are starting to use QR codes. I’ve heard Real Estate firms that are putting them on the For Sale signs on properties. Clothing stores are encouraging their customers to scan in-store to save a percentage that day. Restaurants are are doing the same. I encourage you to be creative to stand out and get noticed!

 

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