Tis the season, and I don’t mean the holiday season.
Tis the season for setting your social media sights right for 2019. Many business owners are working to set goals and make big plans for the coming year. If you haven’t started, you may want to get to it as Q1 is right around the corner.
Getting new business tends to be the focus for many business owners, but often they forget the importance of nurturing repeat clients/customers. This alongside promoting a healthy and valuable social presence is incredibly necessary. As many business owners are bootstrapping their way to success in the beginning, they may not have the resources available to hire a company to take over their digital presence for them.
For that, I present to you the 12 Tools of Social Media!
I’ve compiled many of my tools and tips here for you to use as a resource for DIY-ing your social presence for your brand or business. Best of all, they’re all FREE in some fashion.
Trello is a fantastic app for workflow capabilities. It allows you to create, save and edit right in the app itself. It can be accessed on your computer or on your phone for ease and convenience. I use Trello to plan content for the month. My clients are then able to view, edit and comment on any changes they may need. This is a great resource for planning, organizing and collaborating beyond social media as well. Many businesses upgrade to the paid Trello plan for added options and customization. Here’s a business builder’s example board for you to view.
Image Creation Resource
Images and videos are king on digital platforms. The idea is that you want to get followers and potential followers to stop scrolling long enough to consume your content. For that, you’ll need compelling, on-brand content, usually in the form of images. I use Canva and PicMonkey as my two main image creation platforms. They both allow you to create images based on the correct sizes for each platform. You can layer text, edit photos, and create all new graphics that will help to promote your business, brand or products. Best of all, they are also available on your phone for on-the-go access.
Image Library Resource
In order to create great images, you need to have great images. Where can you get great images that are free for commercial use? Aside from spending hours taking, editing and creating new images or paying TONS of money on stock photo sites, you can visit Unsplash or Pixabay to find many images that are royalty free. Please do NOT copy images off of Google as they the majority have copyright protections that prohibit their use by the general public. Always check the permissions for the photos you find and use and when in doubt, ask the author.
As much as one might like to spend time scrolling Facebook, the reality is that business is-a-calling. There are other needs that require tending apart from social media. If you’ve created content that is evergreen, it may be smart for you to schedule it out to save some time. Nothing beats hitting “publish” live but the days fill up quickly and time needs to be saved wherever it can. Facebook offers a native scheduler that will publish content on your business pages or within your group to make this process easier. Bonus: it won’t say “posted by a third party” when your post goes live!
Much like Facebook has a scheduler build into the platform, Twitter has something similar. TweetDeck allows you to schedule out evergreen content tweets that you’d like to utilize for your posts. I always recommend interacting live on Twitter daily, but if you’d like to fill the gaps with evergreen or curated content, TweetDeck is great for that.
You can use up to 30 hashtags on Instagram. The sweet spot seems to be somewhere between 14 and 29 hashtags. There should be a mix of general, niche and industry tags peppered in. A hot tip for these tags is to keep a list, or note, in your phone of the 10 tags you use regularly. Then you can add, remove or update them once you have copied and pasted them into your Instagram post. This is a way to save you time and a potential insta-headache.
Content on the Go
Your phone is the best and most convenient camera you have for on-the-go content. Use that little pocket camera’s capabilities for Instagram stories, capturing photos that you can use later as well as checking in and posting when you have a few minutes. I love using my phone for Twitter as I can interact quickly and in real time. You pay oodles of dollars for that phone, make it work for you too!
Funny Holidays or Days of Note
Do you always forget “Talk like a Pirate Day” (it’s September 19th, by the way) or “Administrative Assistant’s Day”? There is a resource I use when creating content for each month which is called Days of the Year. It lists multiple fun and interesting holidays for every day of the year. When you’re stuck for lighthearted content, pop over and see what’s going on that day! You’ll be surprised what you find!
Content curation should be a good portion of the content shared. An excellent way to showcase great work that others have created is by filtering industry-specific content through Feedly. Feedly is a site where you can curate and peruse article, videos and more based on interest or keywords. You can save these searches to get daily updates and stay on top of the day’s trending topics.
A tribe is an important part of your social presence. Connect with others in your industry, networking group or in Facebook groups that you can build connections with as a business owner. These connections, when invested in you and your success, will be more likely to read, like and share your content. Don’t forget to reciprocate. Share, like and comment on the content of those you work with, admire and support. Social media is meant to be social!
Your social media presence is at the behest of the platforms in which it resides. That’s why it is so important to have a website where you can cultivate an email list. This list will serve as your foot in the door to more eyes on your content. You can share updates, give reminders and funnel your readers toward becoming paying clients or referral sources.
The Social Suite Group
Join a free group on Facebook to connect, network and learn tricks of the trade in any industry. If you’ve thought of it, there has probably been a group created for it. Personally, the Social Suite Group is a free Facebook group for DIY social media tips to jumpstart your digital presence. Join us where no question is too small, and no problem is too big!
If you just don’t have the patience or the time for social media, check out MOKup Media for assistance creating content, posting and engaging with your current and future followers. Your business will thank you!
Voice vs. Tone
The easiest way for you to make a “name” for your brand online is to stand for something. Have a personality and a voice. The voice of your brand can be described as the personality of your brand. If you were to describe your brand as a person, what words would you use? What adjectives would you attribute to your brand? Is your brand funny, professional, sarcastic or friendly? These descriptors will help you to define the way you speak to your followers on your social media platforms.
Your tone is comprised of the audience, situation and channel you’re interacting on as your brand. This tone may change depending on the gravity of a situation or the intended purpose of the conversation. Your brand will have one voice, but the potential for many tones. Much like you would change the way you speak to your best friends versus the CEO of a fortune 500 company, so will your brand’s tone change.
Defining your voice
- Choose three words that embody your brand:
ex: Professional, Educational and Relatable
- Limit those words to narrow your brand’s personality:
Professional, but not cocky
Educational, but not boring
Relatable, but not dorky
- Read over your three words while looking at the visual branding for your business. Do the visuals of color, typeface and overall feeling align with the three words you’ve chosen for your brand? If so, you’ve got it! If not, it’s time to revisit one or the other.
Mastering your tone
As a brand, you’ll want to be prepared to respond to followers in a variety of situations. A great way to hone your brand’s tone is to participate in real-time experiences online. This will help you to respond and converse with your brand in mind. Think about how you speak about your brand to potential clients and investors. That will help you to embody the brand as a personality online. The best way for this practice to become second nature is to continually practice speaking as your brand instead of about your brand.
If you are finding difficulty in determining your brand’s voice or specific tones, please reach out! We at MOKup Media would be happy to sit down with you for a session to discuss and define your brand’s voice and the goals you have for conversing online. The digital space is a welcoming playground if you know the rules. We’ll happily be your guide! You can find us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook!
It’s October once again. Time for tricks, treats and getting ready for the upcoming holidays. Whether you are preparing for increased holiday sales or looking to add new clients in Q4, your social media presence is important.
Here are 5 Twitter tricks (or treats) to sweeten your social presence.
Update your profile and cover photos.
If you are the face of your brand, change your photo to match. Followers are more likely to follow and engage with a brand they can connect to a person rather than an image. If you prefer a logo for your brand make sure it is bright and clear. Also, update your cover photo to match the current season or new images of your latest products. If you’re a real estate agent, create a collage of photos of available houses in your area. If you are promoting products that can be ordered, showcase those products in a clear, eye-catching way. MLM groups may provide appropriately sized images for your social platforms. Check the resources section of your brand’s portal.
Follow for conversation, not reciprocation.
The follow-for-follow or follow-unfollow games are a short-sighted endeavor. The number of followers matters less than the engagement your content creates. The ROI of your time is better spent engaging and following 100 of your ideal clients than 10,000 people who won’t ever convert to clients or customers. If you are finding and conversing with people and brands who engage in thoughtful conversations you’re well on your way to a healthy social presence. One way to determine if someone is a follower who will stick around is to look at the numbers. Do they have 10k followers but only follow 100 people? They probably play the follow and unfollow game. Do they have engagement on their content? If not, they’re probably not engaging their audience and may not interact with you either.
Participate in Twitter Chats.
Each industry has its players. Many of those players host and participate in Twitter chats. These are digital meetings where users can engage with one another around a specific topic. They are able to follow the conversation using a chat-specific hashtag. One of my favorite weekly Twitter Chats for digital marketers is #TwitterSmarter. Tweet Reports has a growing list of Twitter Chats organized by hashtags. You can check it out here. If you can’t find a chat that meets your needs, maybe start one of your own!
They say Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is a healthy Twitter presence. You will need to interact with current and new followers consistently. The more you interact and engage, the faster your following will grow. This takes time, energy and content. If you’re unable to dedicate the time necessary to growing your following and promoting your presence you may want to seek assistance. Many agencies exist that can help you to create and curate content that you can share with your current and potential followers.
Have a clear voice.
You know your ideal client, your products and services and you have the expertise in your industry. Develop your brand’s voice and tone when responding to a variety of topics: customer service needs, new product announcements, general conversation. Your unique voice will help you to have an identifiable presence on social media. Vanilla is great for ice cream, not so much for your attitude online.
Give your business a boost with this October Treat! Send an email with your social links (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram) to [email protected] and let our team provide you with a free digital diagnostic overview!
*Based on a true story- names have been hidden to protect the successful*
Once upon a time, there was a government contractor. They were in their 5th or 6th year of business and plodding along. They weren’t in danger nor were they ‘raking it in’ per say in terms of clients or business but they were doing just fine. Deep down in their business-loving souls, they knew there was more. More they could be doing in a digital sense, more they could be saying and more they could be meeting. But how? What was the missing piece? How could they turn their strengths into selling points and create warm leads out of new interactions?
Then, their fearless leader found a digital marketing fairy. Someone who spoke to them about a world online where they could share their stories, meet new people and reconnect with like-minded businesses who needed their services. Was it too good to be true? Could they really use the web to connect across the country? Across the world?
The digital fairy said, yes!
But the company didn’t have the time or the knowledge to take on yet another something that wasn’t front-line-business worthy. How could it all be done? The fairy said she had a way!
But it will take work…
As they say, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is a digital portfolio. The company and the digital marketer worked together to solidify their messaging, develop their brand voice and connect their goals to their outreach online. It took some trial and error based on their industry and how they wanted to interact on the different platforms. Once they had their goals and voice decided, they were off to the races. They posted, and posted again: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and more! Posting each work day without fail. They shared industry news, company highlights, and celebrations as well as takeaways from local events.
Little by little, they connected with those in their target industries. They interacted online in a way that made person-to-person meetings comfortable and productive. Partnerships formed through true relationships and they supported one another’s efforts with the diligence of a competition cheer team.
They were, the bell of the social ball!
Too good to be true?
Yet, midnight was approaching. Would it all be for naught? Could everything they build disappear in a flash?
They re-evaluated their endeavors regularly, tweaked their approaches as the platforms changed and developed new initiatives to attract their ideal clients. Their hard work, persistence, and postings were a success!
Yet, their work continues. Still, they post, still, they plan and still, they connect.
Ever active, ever forward!
Are you interested in creating a digital presence that aids in the success of your goals? Start by finding a digital marketing company or professional that understands your needs and can help you to discover and promote your brand’s voice. If you have questions or would like to learn more, please email [email protected], today!
Let’s Be Social!
As summer comes to a close we begin to gear up for a new (school) year of activities, opportunities, and plans. Let’s take your digital presence back to (social) school while we’re at it. Here are a few tips for “upping” your social media chops on some of the most popular platforms.
As a general note, make sure the social icons on your website as well as any email blasts are updated and redirect to your profile pages for each site. You want people to see your interactions, so make it easy for them!
1- A multi-faceted platform with some significant crossover between business and personal pages.
A good rule of thumb: if it isn’t something you think your family or best bud would be interested in reading, don’t put it on your personal page. Special announcements (once in a while), celebrations or milestones, yes, definitely share them everywhere. Otherwise, promotions, classes and general business related posts should be kept to your business page.
2- Use images
Facebook doesn’t like when you post links to your pages. The algorithm sees this as you taking users off of their platform. There is a workaround. Post your copy and link, but instead of letting it auto-populate the link’s image. Insert a native photo (maybe from the article itself) into your post.
3- Use a mix of content
It doesn’t have to be 100% business, all. the. time. Include some more lighthearted, but on brand aspects as well. Share a bit of your, or the company’s personality behind the scenes. Help your audience and potential clients/customers to relate to your company on a personal level.
1- Post Consistently
Posting at least once per day will help to keep your content on top of newsfeeds. Posting more than once per day, depending on your content and industry may boost your growth. If you go days or weeks without posting the platform will not seek out your content to show to your audience as you lack consistency. Post and post some more!
2- Utilize Stories
The IG Stories feature is a great way to interact with followers. You can gain insight into who is watching, how often and their behavior after seeing your story posts. This is a great, quick place where you can share new content, on-the-fly pieces that don’t “fit” into your posts as well as talking directly to your audience. Bonus news: the face filters really remove the need for you to be “camera ready” all of the time- so start adding to your stories!
3- Hashtags are Important
Instagram allows you to use up to 30 hashtags in a single post caption. Do some industry research, (I suggest hashtags.org for as a quick option) to see what engages followers. Also, develop brand-specific hashtags to include in your posts to set them apart. Pro Tip: periodically change up your hashtags to keep your content fresh and reaching new followers.
1- Be Active
Twitter is one of the last-remaining platforms where the feed is relatively in order of time. You’ll see the most recent tweets first with a few “in case you missed it” options below. Tweet regularly to engage your audience and keep them informed of up-to-date highlights.
2- Research Activities
Attending a conference? Participating in a class? Find the organizations hashtag and handle. This will allow you to tag them in tweets and photos. If they’re positive representations of the event you may very well get a ‘like’ or ‘retweet’ from the organization or other attendees. Engage with those participating in the events to make new connections and position yourself as a resource for future events.
3- Answer Your Audience
Alongside the positive side of Twitter, there is the “instant gratification” side. Consistently check your company’s Twitter feed for mentions and tags that may give you the opportunity to offer excellent customer service. Respond positively and with helpful comments to those who seek your assistance. Publically offer to handle their concerns offline or in a DM (direct message) if they seem perturbed in any way.
1- Business Focused
LinkedIn is not always the best potential platform for sales. LinkedIn is a great platform for sharing knowledge, showcasing professional knowledge and positioning yourself as a resource for others. Many users prefer to engage with posts that showcase industry trends and highlights as well as celebrating personal and professional growth.
2- Business Vs. Personal Profile
You should be sharing content to your business page and then ‘liking’ and ‘sharing’ it from your personal page when at all possible (and when it makes sense for your brand). Your connections will see the posts you ‘like’ and ‘share’ more quickly than the ones from your company (especially if they aren’t following your company page directly).
Remember, above all else, your audience will be much more inclined to interact with content that relates to them and makes them feel good. Stay positive, stay on brand and stay social!
If you want to know more about a specific platform or one that wasn’t mentioned here- please don’t hesitate to reach out. I’d be happy to chat through some ideas with you! [email protected]
If you’d like to gain more Twitter and Instagram knowledge- grab a copy of the Twitter Tips and Insta-Greatness freebie here.