Topic: Social Media

3 Tips for Using Hashtags Properly

Posted on March 18, 2015 by - Social Media

We’ve all seen those Instagram and Facebook posts littered with hashtags for days. And of course the tweets that are barely readable due to so many mentions and hashtags. So you may be wondering, how many is too many? Is there a golden rule when it comes to using hashtags properly?

The answer is a resounding yes!

Using hashtags properly

 

The only reason to use a hashtag is to be found more easily. If it’s not a real hashtag, or one that others have used, it’s likely not going to make much sense. Now, if you’re trying to start your own, that’s great – way to be a pioneer. But if you’re not trying to rally around a cause or movement and you don’t have a huge following, you will get better results from using relevant, popular hashtags. This brings us to tip #1:

1. Don’t use a hashtag just because it’s popular

This goes back to being relevant. If you are trying to jump on the hashtag-of-the-day bandwagon, at least make sure your post and the hashtag coincide. Otherwise it’s pretty pointless and obvious what you’re trying to do. Remember, many of us want to be marketed to in a way that isn’t so “in your face.”

2. Don’t use super-long hashtags

If I can’t even figure out what you’re trying to say because your hashtag is 45 characters long – you’ve lost your audience. Let’s face it, hashtags are hard enough to read sometimes without complicating matters. So try to keep it to three words at most, to make it easier to read.

3. Three is the limit

Most social media professionals would agree that anything more than 3 hashtags and you’re overwhelming the audience. This is especially true for Twitter, since you don’t have as much to work with and space is limited. As with writing any kind of quality content, choose your words wisely. Quality over quantity always prevails.

In conclusion, there are many more tips we could share with you, but these are the most basic we thought you should know.

And don’t forget, our social media specialists can manage your profiles and pages for you. Contact us today to learn more, and to hear about our affordable packages.

Understanding Facebook Insights

Posted on March 6, 2015 by - Social Media

Using Facebook Insights in determining when to post and what types of posts get the most engagement

If you manage a company or brand on Facebook, you have likely noticed that Facebook Insights is a very helpful tool. With so many other social analytics monitoring options on the market, Facebook, of course, has to compete by providing their own.

Insights provides a wide array of information about your Page’s performance including: demographic data, how followers are engaging, how many people see your posts and much more. If you have never explored this information, get there by clicking Insights on your Profile Page.

Facebook Insights

When your fans are online

Determining when to post is important in getting eyes on your content. Facebook gives you this information and it looks like this:

Facebook Insights

The number above each day indicates how many of your fans were on Facebook during that day. You can also see what time they were online.

Between 3-4:00 a.m. isn’t the best time to post because the least amount of your fans are online. On the contrary, some suggest posting during down times because there is less competition from other brands and you might getting a running start when traffic does spike.

Post types

Facebook also calculates the success of different post types based on average reach and engagement. Here are some of those statistics from a brand new Page we just started managing:

Facebook Insights

Based on this company’s audience, photos are seen and engaged with far more often than text-only status updates and posts that include a link. More pictures, video and visual content are generally encouraged, but this information will look different for every Page.

It is important for Facebook admins to continually learn, record and analyze data like this from Facebook Insights. Getting your followers attention certainly requires exceptional content, but it also requires good timing.

For a brilliantly customized Social Media strategy and a Social Media Manager that will create branded content, analyze your audience and grow your company or brand’s presence online, contact Thoughtwire Media here or call us at 800-367-2570. 

How a Retail Business Can Excel at Social Media

Posted on February 23, 2015 by - Social Media

storefront

Let’s say you have a brick and mortar store, or several, and you want to improve your social media presence and get the most bang for your buck – where do you start?

Well first, you need to create brilliantly beautiful company pages on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter, complete with high-quality profile and cover photos. Make sure all of your settings are set for privacy purposes to prevent tagging or positing by any spammers (Facebook for example), then start posting some great, relevant posts.

What kind of posts?

Industry news, tips or trends, and occasionally pushing people to your website, of course. Remember to be picture heavy, and use only copyright-free pics.

Know your audience and post content that is relevant, informative or educational to them.

But let’s dig deeper. What else can you do to set yourself apart?

Well, to get new Likes and Followers on Facebook, you need to promote your page. It’s the single best way to get Likes and Followers which could turn into leads in a short amount of time. You can get a lot from just $5 a day for two weeks, and we can manage this for you. Contact us here.

Then what?

Next, focus on creating more in-depth content. Video, for example, gets 12 times the views and clicks as pictures and is great for engagement and sharing opportunities. If you can’t create one, just find one that is already popular and share it. Social media is, after all, about sharing great content.

Don’t spam your followers with your products and services. Be aware that most people don’t want to be sold to through their social media feed. If you want to push products and services, don’t worry – each social media platform has advertising campaigns you can run, separate from the content you create/share. Programs such as the new Facebook advertising options are where you can try to sell directly online.

Finally, don’t drop off the face of the planet. You need to schedule or post something at least a few times a week, or several times a day depending on the platform. Continually respond to comments, take follower’s suggestions, ask them questions, and so-on. Don’t ever look to stop building and managing the relationship you have with your followers.

Your daily, weekly and monthly analytics are important to track as well. Specifically for retail businesses that are promoting and selling products online, you need to have someone in place to track conversions, analyze data, and come up with new strategies.

Contact our social media specialists to learn more, or to see how they can help you today.

Breaking News: YouTube Changes Ad Policy for Brands

Posted on February 20, 2015 by - Social Media

YouTube Changes Ad Policy

 

Does your company have a video on YouTube? If you currently have a video on that platform, or if you have one in production, you need to know about the recent changes to the YouTube ad and branding policy.

YouTube used to be a great place for businesses and brands to showcase their products and services. That has all changed now. Videos showing overlays of sponsor logos and brands will be removed unless you pay Google, the owner of YouTube, for advertising.

On one hand, you could argue that it was inevitable. There are hundreds of thousands of businesses on YouTube, using the platform to make money. YouTube wants a piece of that action. Google knows from their own paid ads on search the billions that can be made off of online advertising.

The other side of that argument is that YouTube should no longer claim to be a free site in which to upload video content.

As far as of the policing of the policy change, no one is quite sure how effectively Google can sweep and check millions of videos. But the truth is that tomorrow you could have a video with thousands or millions of views be removed from the server, never to be seen again.

From YouTube:

“We allow text-only title cards where there is paid product placement for the purpose of paid product disclosure only. Graphical title cards, including the use of sponsor logos and product branding, are prohibited unless there is a full Google media buyout on the partner content by the sponsor.”

The policy does have a loophole, however. If you want to ensure your video content remains on YouTube, call Thoughtwire Media right now at: 800-367-2570.

Achieving Restaurant Success on Social Media

Posted on February 18, 2015 by - Social Media

In this series we’ll discuss three different industries or businesses, and how they can succeed on social media. There are paid and free ways to do this, and we’ll just give you a few tips to get you started.

Restaurant Success on Social Media

 

4 ways to find restaurant success on social media:

Cater to foodies and food lovers

You’re a restaurant, and you make and sell food, so this one should be a no brainer. But the point is to post high-quality, detailed images that make your follower’s mouths water. After all, if you make them hungry for your food, they’ll likely come in that day for lunch or dinner.

Posting times for lunch would be around 10:30 a.m. to get them thinking about their lunch break – and for dinner would be between 2-4:30 p.m. This way you could catch them before they pick up their kids from school, or before they get off of work. Everyone is busy these days, so don’t forget to mention your to-go or catering services as well. Pictures work best on all platforms, especially Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

Give them a reason to come back

Give away food, coupons, discounts, you name it – anything to give people a reason to come back to your pages again and again. This works great on Facebook, just be careful not to be too promotional or you might see your Organic Reach decline or at worst, FB may ban you for a day or take the post down.

Promote your Facebook page

The single best way to get new Likes, Followers and customers is to promote your page on Facebook. Start small if you want, but if you aren’t sure what parameters to set – contact our social media specialists to have them run this for you. They have years of experience running advertising campaigns on social media and promoting brand awareness through acquiring thousands of Likes and Shares.

Drive in-store customers to your pages

You need to get the people that regularly enjoy your dining experience to interact with your brand on social media. Have cards next to your menus with QR codes or social icons. Give them incentive by offering 10 or 15 percent off their meal when they Like your page or give you a review. Utilize a social app like Foursquare and offer free appetizers when they “check in.”

Restaurant Success on Social Media

Consider it a huge win for your restaurant when you can get customers to leave positive reviews on sites like Foursquare, Facebook, Google+, Yelp, and Trip Advisor

If you’re unsure about giving away free food, remember that online reviews and a strong online presence can work wonders for restaurants! You will always have your loyal base of customers. A strong online presence can help you sell meals to tourists, people looking for a new place to eat, and people looking for a phone number to place a to-go order, to name a few.

And all these new potential customers aren’t looking through the phonebook anymore. They’re searching on Google. Which is where your brand will be found after intensive social advertising campaigns, a bigger social circle, and a lot of great reviews!

Contact us to learn more, or to see what social media packages we have to offer to ensure you’re well on your way to increasing your restaurants social media and overall online presence.

New Facebook Product Ads Will Be Beneficial to Retailers

Posted on February 18, 2015 by - Social Media

Facebook Product Ads

Facebook is making another change. This time, it’s not a News Feed algorithm change but something a little more exciting, especially for brands and retailers.

With the changes in Facebook’s organic reach, we predicted that 2015 would be the year of paid advertising on Facebook. The announcement of the new ad type, Facebook Product Ads, should make this process even more efficient.

Dynamic Product Ads

With Facebook’s new dynamic product ads, you will be able to promote various products across multiple devices.

Rather than having to create and configure different ads for different devices and products, you can creatively do it all at one time. These campaigns can be set up to run continuously and to reach the most relevant shoppers.

Kristi Argyilan, Senior Vice President at Target, had the following to say about dynamic product ads:

“With dynamic product ads, Target has been able to more easily engage consumers with highly relevant creative. The early results have exceeded expectations. Performance has been especially strong on mobile devices – an important and fast-growing area for Target – where we’re seeing two times the conversion rate.”

Multi-Product Ads

Facebook’s multi-product ad type will have the capability to show several of your products in one scrolling ad. Facebook hypes it as, “a highly engaging and visually rich way to increase sales and grow your business.”

Brands will be able to get creative with this too. Whether you want to show multiple products or tell a story through pictures, it will be interesting to see how creative businesses get in order to gain the attention of consumers.

Does your business want to reach potential consumers and expand your online presence? Contact our Social Media Specialists and we’ll have you on your way to expanding your social circle with customized management and advertising plans.

3 Tips to Increase Your Facebook Likes and Followers

Posted on February 10, 2015 by - Social Media

Facebook

Everyone wants followers, well, at least they do if they have a company Facebook Page. But getting those organically can be difficult without some pretty big giveaways or already established word of mouth – and an amazing offline reputation.

So what are some ways you can increase your Facebook Likes and Followers and in turn, grow your business?

1. Promote your Page

This should be the very first thing you do once you create an awesome Page. By awesome Page, of course I mean beautiful cover and profile pictures, and lots of clear information listed in all about you areas. Promoting your Page properly is the single best way to get more Likes and Followers, especially if you have an expert set all the parameters for you. Click here to contact one of our specialists. You can be as broad or as specific as you want, and spend as little as $5 a day to start.

2. Post visually stimulating content

Text-only posts should be limited, because if you didn’t hear, Facebook’s algorithm doesn’t place those as often or as a priority in people’s news feeds anymore. Not to mention, people are more likely to be drawn in by something visual. Try to always use a clear, beautiful picture that adds to your message. And don’t forget videos, they get clicked on 12 times more than pictures. Too much can be overkill so keep posts balanced.

3. Post Frequently

Of course you shouldn’t post just to post, but getting something out there keeps you in the game, keeps you at the forefront of people’s minds and ensures you stay relevant to your target audience. But it doesn’t always need to just be news, or “all about you” posts – make sure you are posting engaging content that stimulates thoughts and conversation.

We realize that you may not have time for all of this, so that’s why we have social media specialists who can create and manage your page for you. Call today to learn more about our packages and what we can do for you! 800-367-2570

Twitter’s Deal With Google

Posted on February 6, 2015 by - Social Media

What You Need To Know About Twitter Partnering Up With Google

Twitter's Deal With Google

In case you haven’t heard, Twitter’s CFO, Anthony Nato, really wants Twitter to be one of the top revenue generating Internet companies in the world – reaching $14 billion a year in the next decade. In fact, those were his exact words. And what’s the best way to do that? Well, there were lots of options and plans discussed, but one of the first things they did was partner back up with Google. I mean, how could you not want to partner with a giant like Google?

You may recall in 2009 the two companies agreed to allow tweets to display in Google search results. But this fizzled after a couple of years due to the COO of Twitter wanting more control of the content. Now however, this deal may lead to an increase in both revenue and traffic – something Twitter could use more of. After all, they may have exceeded revenue estimates last quarter, but user growth continues to slow.

Twitter’s plans are rather detailed and extensive, so we’ll spare you the details – but basically they want to monetize syndicated content, and diversify their advertising products. Which is really a good plan regardless of the quarter or the partnership, when you think about it.

 What Are You Likely To See Going Forward?

Well, you may see more promoted tweets popping up again, on Google and on Flipboard, or elsewhere. And you may see a new feature they’re toying with called Instant Timeline, which would show up as relevant search results even if you’re logged off of Twitter, or don’t have an account yet. It’s another genius idea for getting more people to sign up – so they can view the content they just clicked on.

 For more social media tips and trending online news, subscribe to our newsletter, or just give us a call! We’d love to help you expand your online presence, and improve your online brand image. 800-367-2570

The Art of Social Selling

Posted on February 5, 2015 by - Social Media

Social Selling Has Been Proven Successful – If Done Properly

In the social media world, we hear all the time that brands and companies should be engaging their audiences. Rather than sales messages, followers of brands want useful information, viral content, and an inside look at the company, to name a few things. This is all 100 percent accurate.

However, brands can use social media to drive sales, not by constantly asking their followers to buy their products/services, but by implementing strategies that empower their employees (specifically the ones in sales) to make an endless amount of connections, prospects, and leads.

Social Selling

The IBM Example

A couple years ago, IBM North America gave social selling a try. After a six-month pilot program, they saw seven of their sales representative’s combined LinkedIn followers grow from 535 to 3,500. Their total reach went from 54,000 sets of eyes to 1.3 million.

Douglas Hannan, Business Unit Executive for Inside Sales Marketing at IBM North America, saw implementing social selling as a no-brainer after the initial test run:

“Basically, we got more pairs of eyes reading our content with a very low-cost investment – just the rep pages and some social messages. So we said, ‘This is definitely working; we’re rolling this out everywhere.’”

Easier Said Than Done

While there is a massive prospect pool on social media, you can’t just assume that everyone is a lead. To simplify, the main key is to listen and make the connection before any sort of a pitch.

Here are 3 things social selling is not:

  1. Relentless spamming.
  2. Making every conversation a sales pitch.
  3. A replacement for calling prospects and meeting them face-to-face.

Social selling can work well when you follow these steps:

  1. From a company standpoint:
    1. Establish a policy with your sales reps, train them, integrate, and analyze. A cohesive, company-wide effort will produce better results.
    2. From an individual standpoint:
      1. Clean up your profile.
      2. Follow influencers and potential prospects on Twitter.
      3. Don’t just post; listen and engage – re-tweet, share, endorse, and comment.
      4. Make a connection before a call, email, or sales pitch.

If you’re company needs a professional team of marketers to implement a social media marketing strategy, contact us here or call 800-367-2570.

Twitter Is Now An Ad Network

Posted on February 4, 2015 by - Social Media, Uncategorized

Twitter Ads

 

In case you haven’t heard, Twitter has announced their plans to allow advertisers to promote tweets on other apps and websites. This is huge, because it means it can be used as a network for posting ads online, anywhere.

The news is a result of Flipboard and Yahoo! Japan partnering with Twitter. To give you more of an idea of how it works, Twitter’s Ameet Ranadive said:

“Let’s say Nissan is running a Promoted Tweet campaign on Twitter, but also trying to reach similar audience on a mobile application like Flipboard. Through this new partnership, Nissan could run a Promoted Tweet campaign on Twitter, with specific creative and targeting, and simultaneously run the campaign off Twitter, with the same targeting and creative in the Flipboard app. Best of all, because Flipboard already integrates organic Tweets into the app, the Promoted Tweet will have the same look and feel that is native to the Flipboard experience.”

You’re probably wondering what this means for Twitter going forward. Sure, this is great for advertisers, but will this affect the usability or user-friendliness of it? Well, if we look to Facebook or Pinterest as examples, sure people balked at first about the ads – but quickly got over it. After all, they’re not going to quit Facebook or stop pinning. And some people (like us marketing people) love that the ads they see are targeted to their interests and likes.

Honestly it’s surprising it’s taken Twitter this long to finally cash in like all the other platforms have. Sure, they will always own the hashtag, as they were the first one to come up with that, but this really takes social media advertising to a whole new level. Speaking of the hashtag, it used to be the only way TV companies could really target their audiences on social media; but this new form of ads is different, since it will always be available – not just in real time like before.

Follow us on Twitter here for more social media tips, trends and news – and contact us to have our social media specialist give you a free quote for their services.

Yes, we can manage your social media for you! Call today. 800-367-2570