Do You Just Press Publish Then Hope?

Are you the sort of blogger who just presses the publish tab and then hopes for the best?

The publish then hope approach will never get you or your posts noticed, not in a million years.

There are a few things you can do to increase your readability before you press publish then hope for the best.

  1. Don’t be caught out by the grammar police. imgresWhen you have finished your writing always check the spelling and grammar of the post or article, use the spellcheck option or a service like Grammarly. Proofreading is always a good idea, read it out loud, check headings, titles and cross check citations. It is always a good idea to check your work more than once before publishing.
  2. Try to link to old content on your site. Internal linking will improve the structure of your website, increase the overall authority of your sites internal pages thus improving the likelihood of inbound link potential. To do this is quite simple, open an old published post, and find the relevant place in the article to place the link to the new page or post.
  3. Always post to Facebook. When a new post is placed on Facebook add an enticing & interesting sentence that will capture peoples attention, explain briefly the benefits of reading further and how your article will help them.
  4. Post to LinkedIn. This something I do all the time, not just to general LinkedIn followers but to all the groups I am in, there are a lot of good professional marketing groups on this platform. At the time of writing there is not too much spam either which is helpful.
  5. Tweet about it. Write a short, jazzy introduction to your new post to grab the interest of your followers and in turn attract new followers to your brand. Include a hashtag or two but don’t over do that part.
  6. Reddit is a very useful tool. Post here as well. Most Reddit users are addicted to the site, and their readers very often share content, opinions good or bad on articles, posts or images shared.
  7. Create a question at the end of a post. When you do this it will encourage your readers to think deeply about the topic and also you will be able to engage with them more significantly.
  8. Share on news aggregation sites. Platforms like Alltop serve as a great resource where readers can find loads of content on the subjects that interest them. Many bloggers share their content on these type of sites to gain an influx of new quality traffic and leads.
  9. Send your subscribers an email. imagesA lot of internet marketers mail their list on a daily basis, others prefer two or three times a week, but whatever your preference is always send a mail out when you create a new piece of writing. My preference is Getresponse.
  10. Publish to relevant networks. Whether it be Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, Snapchat, Stumbleupon or Google+ just share it, get it out there and become noticed.
  11. Comment on other peoples posts. This strategy is great for building rapport and trust and will gets you good results, keep providing value and the winning formula will prevail.
  12. Always respond to comments on your blog posts and return the favour. It can be time consuming but will be worth it in the end, you will gain a good reputation and in-turn more followers.
  13. Follow these ideas and never worry about the publish then hope conundrum ever again.

Digital advertising has been blacklisted

Which Form of Digital Advertising is the Most Effective?

People these days are so fixated on content marketing, and organic search that even uttering the words ‘let’s pay for some traffic’ have become awkwardly pushed to the side.

But don’t be fooled.

Even the most successful ‘content marketers’ are still using digital advertising tactics to get their content found. They might just not tell you about it, because it contradicts their methodology.

We can’t forget how effective ads can be for getting our products and services found – but we need to be aware of how the landscape is changing.

 

The state of digital advertising

Digital ad revenue continues to grow year on year.

The big trend you need to know about?

Mobile is taking over (Not quite taking over, but it’s growing rapidly)

Ok you get it, content marketing alone might not be enough and mobile is becoming more and more important if you want to advertise online.

But where do you start? How do you know what is the best platform for your business?

The most effective form of digital advertising is contextual, it depends on who you are trying to reach and how you want to get there.

Let’s run through the options, then give a quick breakdown of who benefits most from each.

Social Media

It’s a rare thing to find a company without a social media division these days, even if that “division” is just some hapless intern working for experience.

From restaurants to airlines to celebrities – if there’s a brand, there’s a Twitter handle to match.

When it comes to advertising on social media, everything is pretty new. The way we advertise on these platforms is continually changing, because no one really knows what works.

Advertisers aren’t quite sure yet (although some will claim they are). The consumers are confused with these new ads popping up on their social streams. And the platforms themselves (Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter) are still balancing user experience with maximising revenue.

Social ads generally follow Pay-Per-Click or Pay-Per-Impression models, making them relatively easy to budget for – because you pay for what you get.

Now for a closer look at Facebook and Twitter as advertising platforms.

Facebook

This social network is perhaps the most progressed with its digital advertising platform.

Facebook ads are similar to Google PPC campaigns, where you can bid for clicks or impressions on different keywords, then display ads on Facebook’s right vertical bar.

More recently Facebook introduced news feed ad spots if you have an active Facebook page. These are proving a much better ROI than the right side bar.

Keep in mind that the people seeing your ads will find them in a social context – so photos and images are a core component of a successful ad campaign.

Who should advertise on Facebook?

Devoted PPC marketers with the willingness to spend a lot of time getting things right.

Keep in mind that the sheer number of users Facebook has, makes it a perfect fit for B2C marketers. But B2B marketers have started to make their presence known because of the extremely targeted information the platform is accruing on all of us.

Facebook ads are easy to launch, and just as easy to edit (especially with the new mobile ad manager).

Marketers are able to make spot fixes on the fly to optimise and correct under performing ads while boosting budget for winners.

Twitter

These ads are, again, not dissimilar from Facebook advertising when it comes down to brute mechanics.

But they’re a different animal conceptually. Facebook ads are, well, advertising. They’re your chance to put your commercial foot forward.

Twitter ads are not. Paying for prominence here is a way to put what you might normally tweet into a more obvious place.

Ads work in parallel with the personality of your normal, free Twitter feed, and shouldn’t veer off into sales territory.

Who should advertise on Twitter?

Marketers with a solid Twitter strategy, but not enough Twitter traction.

Promoting your posts to the right audience (and yes, Twitter’s ad engine allows considerable targeting) is your way of cutting through the logjam of influencers and expose potential clients to your social voice.

Interstitial

The relative new kid on the block. Interstitial ads, if you haven’t heard the phrase before, are promotional pages that show up before a visitor makes their way to the content they actually want to see. On one hand, that basically guarantees visibility. On the other, it’s irritating; interstitial ads are prime targets for adblock software, and many clients avoid them on principle.

As a result, the industry has undergone a mild reformation. They’ve really come into their own on mobile platforms, where they quickly capture attention, leading to soaring success, especially in the case of attention-grabbing video and rich media ads.

Who should advertise with interstitial?

Companies with the budget to make a move on mobile and do it right.

Poorly made mobile ads are just as annoying as their increasingly disliked predecessors; treat them as an opportunity to create original content, then show it to your viewers.

Banner Ads

Banner ads have caught a load of flak for the slashed CTR’s they’ve seen of late. But while the numbers are daunting, they merely point to a poor average, not a death knell for the humble banner.

They might not pull the engagement that more obtrusive options do, but banner ads remain wonderful for establishing visual branding, and hitting a highly targeted audience.

The ability to pick and choose where an ad shows up allows advertisers to carefully tailor their campaign toward a given site and demographic.

But in order to beat flagging CTR’s, companies do have to evolve. Think about clever examples like Skittles’ interactive, offbeat banners, or powerful, fold-dominating movie posters.

Who should advertise with banner ads?

Established companies with a solid ad budget, and an extremely clear idea of who they want to reach and how.

A defined audience and a superb visual idea can still combine to keep banners relevant.

PPC

The skimpier, but less-expensive cousins to banner ads.

Google’s Pay-Per-Click campaigns have become a massive boon for cash-strapped businesses looking to muscle in on banner space. And at least at the moment, they’ve proven to be effective.

Those stark text boxes may blend in to the background of many sites, but find a convincing enough message, and it’ll still snag a few eyes.

Perhaps the best thing about PPC ads is that they offer a more-or-less predictable ROI, and one that, even if an ad belly-flops spectacularly, won’t drop to levels low enough to seriously hurt most companies.

Design costs for text ads are nil, and the PPC model guarantees that advertisers won’t drop too much of their budget upon launch.

Who should advertise with PPC?

Companies that don’t translate well to visual media.

Whether you simply don’t have a graphic artist on hand, or your services are hard to sum up in a photo, PPC is your best bet for a high-yield campaign.

The best PPC ads are the ones that ditch details, and go for the jugular with competitive prices and calls to action.

Wrapping it up

While all ad formats still have their applications for different companies, changing technology and market trends will result in a few finding even greater success down the road.

We’re particularly talking about mobile. Whether you go banner, video interstitial, whatever. Mobile ads will likely make up a larger and larger percentage of all advertising in the coming years. Evolving tech such as proximity marketing will only exaggerate that effect.

But if you’re attached to a particular form, there’s still good news. The lessons learned from more traditional marketing aren’t about to be completely invalidated. At the end of the day the actual quality of ads will be the single largest determining factor of their success.

Use Twitter Testimonials

Why use Twitter testimonials?

Curating your Twitter testimonials is not new though: some brands have been doing this for ages but so many businesses are not utilising this powerful trust building method that the concept needs to be laid out in more detail.

images

Twitter created the opportunity to share short ideas, links and news in real time. It allows the world to discover something new every day!

Many people and businesses shy from Twitter and social media because they are afraid of people saying bad things about their brand. The reality is that 99.9% of the time is quite different. It is positive and provides social proof.

Testimonials are one part of the positive aspects of crowd sourced feedback and sharing online.

Why not tap into the power of these positive comments on Twitter.

But why are Twitter testimonials a credible source of creating online trust?

Here are 3 quick examples of why.

Twitter testimonials are easy to verify: They may boost brand credibility by showing

the real people using the product and discussing it;
Twitter testimonials give users more context; This provides context around the

brand’s approach to social media and engagement culture;
Twitter testimonials engage readers: This is enabled by encouraging them to join

the brand’s official accounts and helping promote its product online.

The beauty of Twitter is that has some very simple tools that make it very flexible:

There are quite a few ways to filter out noise and publicise what’s important for you

and your business.

Let’s see some of them: Here are 4 ways to use Twitter to supercharge your online

credibility.
1. Curate and publish Twitter testimonials using Twitter favorites

Twitter favorites have always been a bit under-utilized feature. In the past people even

had to wonder how and why to use it. Nowadays, Twitter users tend to favorite tweets

when they want to say thanks.

While retweets should not be usually perceived as endorsements, a favorite is a good

way to express that you agree with and support the statement. That’s how I use the

feature from my personal Twitter account.

For an official business Twitter account, I usually recommend a more practical

approach: Use favorites to curate positive Twitter context around my brand.

I heard about this method long ago: Perch has been using favorites to curate Twitter

testimonials since 2010. Amazingly, after several re-designs, the Twitter testimonial

widget is still there on their site (It must have been working very well for them!):
The method has undergone some important changes: Previously you could have used

RSS feeds which were publicly available for your Twitter streams, but Twitter has

disabled RSS feeds, so now you’ll need to use the official Twitter widget to generate

the embedded code for your favorites.
This way you actually get full control over what testimonials get publicized while

making sure the process is very easy.

2. Curate and publish Twitter testimonials using hashtags

You can encourage your customers to tweet their experience using a hashtag. This

call-to-actionimages can be included in the order status auto-responder email (they are very

easy to set up) to further engage a hopefully happy customer.

This is a more dangerous, less controlled method giving more power to your user

which can actually blow up. On the other hand, it’s unlikely to go massively wrong

unless you are as big as McDonald’s. Smaller brands use hashtags very effectively.

The brand hashtag adds more visibility to your business on social media and can help

you build loyalty using social media by engaging more of customers. Bannersnack is

a good example of doing that well and it seems to be working very well for them:

There are more tools to publicise your social media proof and create more reliable

assets, including:

Storify
Scoop.it
Paper.li
RebelMouse.com

3. Curate and publish Twitter testimonials using sentiment search

Another method to semi-automate positive brand sentiment tracking is using

sentiment search. This a well known trick: Twitter supports a “smilie” search:
A good example of using sentiment analysis to curate feedback is Site Geek. It

publicises on-site user reviews as well as Twitter reviews of each listed hosting

company:
In most cases, that will be a bit cluttered feed, so instead of publicizing those tweets,

I’d recommend collecting and archiving them using social media dashboard called

Cyfe: It allows you to create multiple dashboards with multiple widgets (To monitor

lots of sets of results) and it also archives all the results.

I use Cyfe to monitor lots of search sets (hashtags, possible reviews, content ideas,

etc) throughout many search platforms including Google (through Google Alerts),
I log in to Cyfe a few times a month to find some social proof and I can then publicize

those tweets using a “Embed Tweet” feature:

The beauty of using Twitter search is that it’s very flexible. For example, you can filter

out all tweets that contain links using -filter:links in your search query. If you are into

local business or simply want to curate testimonials coming from a certain location

(this is very useful if you are hosting or monitoring an event) DirJournal also suggests

using location settings when setting up your Twitter search:

4. Curate and publish using Getkudos
This is a pretty new tool for me but it’s free, so why not add it to the toolbox?

Getkudos helps you collect and publicise your Twitter and Facebook kudos (I wish

they supported more networks by the way!)

It’s very easy to set up: Simply connect it to your social media accounts and login

once in a while to curate mentions:

Once you have some curated content, use one of the widgets (inline or floating) to

publicise kudos on your own site. The example of the inline widget can be seen on

Getkudos home page. Here’s an example of the floating one:

You can also collect more kudos from your happy customers via email or live on-site

chat. You also get a separate public page listing your kudos which is another brand

asset you can promote (example):

Are you utilising Twitter for collecting and promoting your business testimonials? Have

you heard of case studies of those who do? Please share your thoughts in the

comments!

20 Twitter Facts and Statistics

What first attracted me to Twitter and social media was that you could achieve world wide marketing for free, called an organic reach. This enabled bloggers to build global brands. That is changing, here are some Twitter facts and statistics you should know about.

This year we are seeing the rapid emergence of pay to play, to reach your followers. So questions need to be addressed.

Is the social media free lunch over? That also leads to another question. Is social going the way of mass media where the only way to gain attention is to pull out the cheque book?

The answer is much more complex than that. It is dependent on many factors including your choice of social networks, tactics and tools.
Is Twitter’s organic reach going to disappear too? Facebook is pushing the comfort boundaries of organic reach.

For Twitter though the filtering is not an option as it is a news breaking social network. Applying filtering algorithms to it’s stream will take away its meaning for existence and continuing evolution. You only have to look at its latest hiring trends that are mass media and television centric to realise that Twitter is pushing towards the integration of television, social and mass media.

That focused strategy by Twitter management to make mass media and social work together is maybe one of the reasons that its latest quarter two results that exceeded every analysts expectations. The World Cup marketing coup by Twitter was evidence of that successful and ongoing evolution. I don’t expect Twitter’s organic reach to disappear as it has too much to lose if it takes the Facebook path.

Twitter facts and statistics

Below are some surprising facts and statistics that show Twitter is on the path to successfully reinventing itself.

1. There was a 24% increase in monthly active users over the last 4 quarters with the total now at 271 million.

2. Twitter has added 53 million users in the last 12 months

3. Twitter’s monthly mobile users now total 211 million, which is a gain of 29%

4. 81% of Twitter’s advertising revenue came from mobile ads

5. Increase in sales is up 124% from a year ago at $312 million compared to $139.3 million in second quarter of 2013

6. Twitter expects to have revenue of between $330 and $340 million in the third quarter of 2014

7. Twitter is growing the fastest in Asia Pacific with expectations it will increase its user base by more than

33% in 2014 according to eMarketer

8. Twitter penetration rates in Asia Pacific stand at 19.8% for Japan, 18.3% for for Indonesia and 12.2% in Australia

9. Twitter penetration rates in the USA stand at 27.9% of all social networks users, 19.2% of internet users

and 15.2% of the total population

10. In the USA the number of Adult Twitter users is estimated at 34.7 million

11. Timeline views reached 173 billion for the the second quarter of 2014

12. Twitter is currently valued at $27.3 billion which is 200 times forward earnings compared to Facebook at 39.4 times

13. During the World Cup there were 672 million tweets

14. Germany’s defeat of Argentina in the final generated 618,000 tweets per second

15. There were 32.1 million Tweets during the World Cup final

16. The previous record for an event was the Superbowl, and that received 24.9 million tweets

17. Twitter spends more than its competitors on stock based compensation as a percentage of revenue on its

employees at $158 million (50.29%) compared to Facebook (10.9%) and LinkedIn (14.3%)

18. Advertising revenue per thousand timeline views reached $1.60 in the second quarter of 2014 which is an

increase of 100% over the last year

19. Katy Perry has the most Twitter followers currently at over 55 million followed by Justin Bieber (53 million)

and Barack Obama (44 million)

20. Tweets with images receive 18% more clicks than those without

 

The Social Media Quick Step

Social media is more than just a fun way to engage and communicate with friends & family. It is an extremely powerful business marketing tool if strategically implemented correctly.

A common mistake businesses make is failing to develop a formal social media plan. Having a plan for social media is just as important as it is any marketing strategy. A savvy business owner does not buy traditional advertising without developing a plan, and the same applies with social media.

A social media marketing plan includes many of the same elements of a traditional marketing plan. Research into target markets and consumer purchasing is a must. Identifying brand strengths and weaknesses is also important.

Once you’ve conducted research, it is time to start outlining strategies and developing your plan.

 

 

Below is a social media marketing strategy plan.

1. Identify a social media manager

With the many tasks involved with running a successful business, social media can fall by the wayside. Before your business embarks on a social media campaign, it is a good practice to identify a person or multiple people who will be in charge of monitoring and posting content. It is important for the social media manager to not only ensure content is posted on a regular basis, but also monitor and respond to all comments and feedback. The assigned staff should be willing to monitor the company’s social pages 24/7, which can be easily accomplished through e-mail alerts and mobile apps.

2. Create branded pages

Once you have identified your manager, it’s time to create branded pages. First, determine which social media sites you want to use. Small businesses should consider Facebook, Twitter and Google+ at the very least. In some cases, other sites including LinkedIn, Pinterest and Houzz may also be appropriate. It is important for all of your social media to have the same look and feel as your company website. Facebook cover pages do have some flexibility and allow you to have some very specific elements can be incorporated for maximum impact:

Use colour and photos
Integrate your profile picture into your cover
Incorporate a call to action
Point out where people can call or contact you

After you create your social pages, be sure to include links on your website and invite all of your customers and friends to join your pages.

3. Develop a planning calendar

Now that your social sites are “live”, it is time to start developing a planning calendar. Ideally, this should be done on a monthly basis. Your planning calendar may outline the following: Number of posts per week,
Time the post will be made, you should vary your posting times, Identify content for each post.

A planning calendar lays the foundation and ensures you are maintaining your social sites and posting on a regular basis. Of course, you can also post other news, tips and ideas as they arise. The biggest pitfall businesses run into are they generally have a lot of excitement when they first establish their social media presence, but the momentum quickly fades. Having a monthly planning calendar will help keep your social media efforts moving forward.

4. Generate engaging content

Now that you have identified a manager, set up your pages, and developed a planning calendar, it is time to

start generating engaging content. Once you generate content, you can plug it into the dates/times you have reserved on your social media calendar to compose posts. As you consider content, think outside of your company and put yourself in your customer’s shoes. What type of information is not only engaging, but is something followers would like to share? Creating sharable content is one of the quickest ways to pick up new followers.

Let’s take a look at some content ideas:

Weekly tips and advice
Post something humorous (in good taste)
Highlight and recognize your customers
Incorporate “social media” only offers
Be interactive – ask questions people will want to answer
Photos and videos
Coupons and contests
Product overviews
“How To” videos
Sales and special events

Remember, maintaining the attention of your followers will keep them engaged.

5. Monitor responses and track your results

It is imperative to monitor all comments and respond in a timely manner. Good or bad, all feedback needs to be addressed. If someone praises your product and/or service, thank them. If they have a complaint or concern, reach out to them. It is important to investigate the validity of the negative comment and address it immediately. Customer feedback can help you better understand reaction to your products and/or services. Also be sure to incorporate a good tracking system. This can really provide important insight into your customers and their behavior. Companies such as Global Response provide excellent outsourced social media analytics programs that can be easily incorporated and integrated into your social strategy.
6. Use results to better understand consumer behavior 

What better way to gauge customer demand than to ask them yourselves? Don’t be afraid to engage your followers and get their opinions. Doing so can help identify both areas of strength and weakness. As we discussed earlier, prompt response to comments is key to developing a relationship with your followers. Even big box stores work to maintain open and responsive communication with their followers: I find in my marketing practice, social media intimidates many small businesses. If you approach it like any other form of marketing and develop a plan, it can become a very useful and effective tool which complements your traditional marketing strategies.

Here are 9 things you may not know about social media.

1. A social media strategy, guidelines and a system for handling negative comments are the first steps to mastering social media.

2. Facebook’s algorithm means that only an estimated 10 per cent of your Company Page updates are seen by the people who like your page. This percentage has a better chance of increasing if you post regularly, and your fans ‘like’, ‘comment’ and ‘share’ your content. Or you can always fork out money to boost your posts, but this can get expensive.

3. Twitter’s Advanced Search lets you find tweets on a topic within a certain radius.

4. LinkedIn lets you keep information about the people in your network. You can add ‘how you met’, set ‘reminders’ like birthdays or follow up calls, and also add ‘notes’ and ‘tags’.

5. The three main formats of YouTube videos that you can create are ‘talking head’ (like on the news), ‘interviews’ (via Skype or in person) and ‘screenshare’ videos.

6. Google+ has made a change to its ‘authorship’ system. Your headshot no longer appears in the Google search results, but your name still does.

7. You can get super creative with Instagram. There are cool free apps (like Photo Editor) and paid apps (like WordSwag) that let you overlay words onto your pics.

8. Pinners (aka people on Pinterest) absolutely love infographics. Try publishing one yourself and see how many backlinks and social media shares you get. Ask your designer, or else try oDesk, Elance or Fiverr if you’ve got a tight budget.

9. Tools like Feedly, Buffer and Hootsuite make social media a breeze. Follow your favourite blogs with Feedly, schedule your social media updates with Buffer and monitor your accounts with Hootsuite.

Intergrating Twitter into Your Marketing Strategy

Many Internet Marketers overlook Twitter as they see it as a waste of time.

However, ignore at your peril because not only can it generate substantial profit for you in the long run, it will also help you understand your market more effectively. The more you understand your target market the more you know about these people and what makes them tick. Therefore you will be more effective when it comes to selling to your customer base, which equals more money in your pocket.

Twitter, along with most other social media sites, has become a very important source of information for people looking to make online purchases. Many go to Twitter to ask questions or gain opinions from friends and followers regarding various products and services. It is estimated that 40% of social media users take this into account before buying anything, it is like word of mouth, but done in cyber space, therefore very effective form of advertising.

Just like any marketing strategy you need a plan, without one your chances of success diminish quite considerably. So your first objective is to find your target market, which is not as hard as you might think.

As is the norm these days many third party applications, websites and services have popped up to make our life easier when it comes to working with Twitter. One such site is Twello, which is the yellow pages of Twitter. Twello allows you to search for users by categories which are split into personal and professional ones. So for example if you are in the internet marketing niche you can choose the marketing category and then narrow your searches further by searching for specific keywords.

Other Effective Tools To Consider

Twitter Search is Twitters built in search engine which can be helpful in finding prospects.

Twitter Fall allows you to search keywords and hash tags.

Social Mention is especially useful since you can search a wide range of social media sites, regular websites, world news and almost all keywords found on the internet. Can also be used to identify prospective clients as well as staying up to date with what people are saying about your own products or services.

Twitterment & Tweep search are two highly effective search tools that are slightly more useful than Twitter search engine because they can search the bios of people thus gaining a great deal of demographic information about someone.

Nearby Tweets allows you to find users according to there location and then also allowing you to narrow down the results even further by searching by keyword.

Tweetadder The most effective Twitter automated follower building & management tool of all time. TweetAdder saves the time and expense of locating and following niche users so you can spend more time engaging with the twitter users that want to hear what you have to say and stay connected with them.