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Where Social Media is Headed in 2018

Where Social Media is headed in 2018

Social media is a very new aspect of our businesses that has taken over significant parts of not only our marketing plans but also our personal lives.

Major platforms battle for prominence and significance by adjusting their business models to provide better returns for their shareholders while intending to improve the user experience.

As these systems develop, how you use these platforms for your business must change as well.

For tips on how to improve your social media read our article: How to set your social media goals for 2018

Social Media ROI

While certain trends are consistent, subtle variables at play can become game changers. Recently Facebook has announced adjustments to its news feed and if that matters to your social media marketing then you will need to account for that change.

For that platform brands and businesses will now have an even harder time connecting to users with no previous demonstrated connection to the company trying to reach them.

When Facebook originally started it was a free-for-all and at that point everyone marketing online pounced. But year after year it became harder and harder to reach any users organically through their feed.

Now even the paid reach will be more restricted making it even harder to drive traffic from posts to your business’s page or website.

If you measure the ROI of your social media efforts with an emphasis just on the Facebook platform then you may be alarmed when you see the stats start to change.

So how do you measure the return on your investment in social media?

According to Buffer, most measure by analyzing engagement with lead generation being second place and a sale being third.

As we all know measuring a conversion can be very simple or very complex but for most small businesses, it’s the former and amounts to ‘did they buy from us?’ or ‘did they contact us?’.

Moving forward the value of a lead may take precedence over engagement as platforms make it easier to qualify where the lead came from and how the user started in one place (social media) and wound up in another (your website).

Video Marketing

Another aspect that continues to attempt to move into a more prevalent spot is video marketing.

In 2016 and 2017 many predictions were made about video becoming more and more relevant to businesses. Many companies have started, and some closed, whose sole offerings were pre-made videos that could be updated for a business or brand to use.

The market hasn’t shown that businesses are warming to that and many small businesses simply shy away from the cost, effort, and risks associated with trying to produce professional quality video with a small budget.

It’s not impossible to do but it can go badly very easily. As a result, video marketing is still struggling to lure companies in. Though in Buffer’s same analysis, the users they polled stated they are interested in doing more video this year.

What Should Your Business Do?

If you’re planning on adapting to trends, then two things genuinely stand out. While there is no shortage of opinions, most self-appointed experts or gurus are guilty of self promoting while hoping their particular specialty will become more relevant.

Ask a video marketer and they’ll tell you it’s all video and YouTube. Ask a Facebook ads specialist and they’ll tell you it’s all about Facebook ads now.

The truth is the only two big stand outs that have shown they’re providing better results are Instagram (and Instagram stories specifically) and LinkedIn ads. Instagram’s user base has grown dramatically and LinkedIn will soon be offering video ads leading to increased relevance for both.

You may have a budget already set for your social media spending, but remember those are never fixed. Adjust and try attributing more to different platforms to gauge how effective it is for your business.

While it may seem laborious it’s really not that hard to take an afternoon to read up on any recent changes and adjust your spending accordingly.

If you find yourself too busy to bother or hung up by the complexity, it’s good to reach out to social media experts.

They can work with your SEO consultant, or if you don’t have one, they may have a recommendation in making your social media work for you to avoid just pumping out content for the sake of having it and hoping it will do something for you.

Make 2018 the year you really pay attention to your social media because more and more of your competitors are.

Getting ahead of them requires adapting to change rather than resisting. Once you do you’ll see much better results from your online marketing.

If you are brand new to using social media for your business and are ready to start but not sure where or how then please sign up for our Social Media Membership Program. It’s a cost effective and easy way to work with industry professionals while you study the ins and outs of social media, video, and online marketing.

Thanks for reading,
Mark Hare

P.S. If you liked what you read here, you will want to sign up for our newsletter to the right of the page where you’ll get notified every Thursday of that day’s blog post. Click here to also receive our free website guide: www.UltimateWebsiteGuide.ca

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Where Social Media for your business is headed in 2018Click To Tweet

About the Author, Mark Hare

Mark Hare

Mark has been working in search engine optimization, paid online advertising, content marketing, and usability since 2005.

He has worked with hundreds of clients on a wide range of web based projects and is a strong proponent of white hat SEO techniques and link earning over building.


13 of the Best Ways to Generate Leads with Social Media

13 of the Best Ways to Generate Leads with Social Media

I’ve been thinking about one of the biggest reasons why businesses and entrepreneurs take the time to be on social media. Aside from showing off their cute pets or grandbabies, it’s to help grow their business.

When wanting to grow our business, we often think of the more tradition methods of marketing and advertising. As an example, typical advertising channels are newspaper, radio and TV ads. Where typical marketing includes SEO, PR, and Direct Mail campaigns to name a few.

But when we look to social media to help with this, the approach needs to be different  than those more traditional methods of getting qualified business leads.

Marking a business on social media needs a different approach from traditional marketingClick To Tweet

And that approach is through a method called “inbound, pull or relationship marketing“.

Pull and relationship marketing relies on developing relationships with prospects before doing any overt promotion. The premise being people, especially women, tend to do business with others who they already know, like and trust.

In fact, according to Nielsen, 83% of consumers will trust the recommendations of family and friends so it’s our goal as business owners to gain that trust.

83% of consumers trust family & friends recommendations making relationship marketing importantClick To Tweet

So how does one go about gaining trust and generating qualified leads from social media?

Here’s 13 best ways to attracting qualified leads to your business:

  1. Establish yourself as being knowledgeable in your industry. Do this through your blog, newsletter, and the types of posts you add to your social media accounts.
     
    This authority will build trust with your followers as they learn more and more about what you do, and your expertise in that field.
  2. Pick the best channels for you to get visible on and focus just on those. Don’t try to spread yourself too thin by being everywhere.
     
    Instead of chasing after the social media channels that are getting a lot of attention, ask yourself this important question: “Where is my target audience hanging out?”
     
    Then go build your brand presence there.
  3. Be on social media with the intent of being helpful, not on pushing your wares. People smell desperation a mile away and it’s a turn-off to most.
     
    Instead of always trying to “push” your products or services on others, “pull” them in by being engaged with them. Comment, like and share their posts. Answer questions that are genuinely helpful.
     
    Developing trusting relationships will give you greater returns in the long run than doing nothing but promoting yourself.
  4. Provide exclusive offers just for your loyal followers. In between posting informative posts, sprinkle in special offers, discount codes, contests or giveaways that are exclusive to your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram followers.
     
    Shortstack offers an easy way to hold Instagram, Facebook and Twitter contests that will also help you stay within those platform’s rules.
  5. Ask for a referral after someone has made a purchase. When an online purchase is made, the purchaser is sent to a “thank you” landing page. Use that page to offer some sort of incentive to share what they bought with their social media followers.
  6. Host a Twitter Chat or Facebook Live show. This is a great opportunity to get in front of your followers and showcase your expertise.
     
    Use the show to have a question and answer session, share a valuable tip, strategy or perhaps some inspiration. Use your imagination and think about what your followers would want from you.
  7. Incorporate a paid ads campaign. Despite what we tend to think, social media is not really a free platform for business.
     
    In order to get the exposure you need to generate solid leads, you need to look at it from a “pay to play” perspective. Invest in Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn ads, depending on where your ideal clients are hanging out the most.
     
    It wouldn’t hurt to supplement your efforts with Google ads too. Google ads can be extremely effective at driving qualified traffic back to your website.
  8. Create a custom tab on Facebook for your free giveaway. Facebook users don’t like leaving that platform so one way to get people to sign up for your free giveaway is to host a custom tab within your Facebook page that provides the signup ability. Here is ours as an example.
     
    Pagemodo offers a means to do this or you can use Static HTML as well.
  9. Add your list of services to your Facebook page. Facebook recently implemented a new feature on the business page that provides an opportunity to showcase your services. Take advantage of this great feature so your followers know what it is you offer!
     
    Here’s ours as an example.
  10. Use Twitter cards. Twitter cards are a great lead generator that has a call to action embedded right in the tweet.
     
    Once the visually eye-catching and compelling tweet is created,  pin it as a feature tweet to the top of your page. This is prime real estate that twitter followers will see when checking you out.
     
    You can view our Twitter card here.
  11. Use video. Video is where it’s at on the social media scene so take full advantage of the excellent exposure it can bring your business.
     
    You can use video on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and of course YouTube to demonstrate how to use your product, share informative tips and strategies, offer inspiration and words of wisdom to name a few ideas.
  12. Add a call to action to your Facebook page. Your Facebook business page has a great feature located right under your header banner that allows you to add in a call to action.
     
    Ask yourself what you want your followers to do once they have discovered your page? You can choose from several options such as booking a service, getting in touch, learning more, making a purchase or donation or downloading an app or game.
  13. Get engaged with your followers. One of the fundamental strategies you can incorporate into your social media efforts is to get involved and engaged with other people and pages posts.
     
    A great way to get more exposure to your page is to like, comment and share other page posts as your page. Find other pages that share the same target market as you and like those pages as your page (as opposed to your personal profile) and make a daily habit of interacting with those posts.
     
    The more you get engaged with your followers, the more they will be aware of who you are, which will begin to develop the know, like and trust factor with them. The more that happens, the more apt they will be to go check you out and if they need what you’re offering, they will then become a lead for your business.

As you can see, there are lots of ways to take advantage of social media’s powerful lead generation possibilities. The key is to be consistent, be strategic and be patient with you efforts. This process has also helped Southern California Home Buyers in Corona, CA find their dream homes!

The key to social media marketing is to be consistent, strategic and patientClick To Tweet

For more in-depth strategies and assistance with hands-on, step-by-step help, check out my monthly Social Blast program specifically created to help entrepreneurs and small businesses use social media and online marketing to help build their business.

Find out more here: www.socialmediagroupcoaching.com

To your success,

9 Reasons Why Social Media Has Become An Epic Fail for Your Business

8 Reasons Why Social Media Has Become An Epic Fail for Your Business

Stop wasting your time; here’s what you can do right now to turn things around

Wish you were getting better results with your social media?

Many entrepreneurs I talk to are frustrated they aren’t seeing anything come of their social media efforts. They’re ready to give up, thinking it’s all been a huge waste of time.

This is when I tell them social media marketing isn’t as easy as creating and posting content. Indeed, there’s much more that goes into making social media marketing work effectively for a business.

So if you can relate and feel like you’re spending hours on social media and think it’s all been an epic waste of time fail, then it’s time to take an honest look at what you are doing.

Think your social media efforts are a waste of time? Take an honest look at what you're doingClick To Tweet

Social media is a prominent advertising, marketing and lead generating tool for businesses today but the trick is being strategic about your efforts.

Keep reading the rest of this article for ways that you might need to get more strategic and turn your efforts into a profit-making endeavour.

Here are nine common mistakes business owners and entrepreneurs make with their social media:

  1. You Aren’t Relevant

    It’s really important to know your audience (aka your ideal client) and choose posts they will find meaningful and useful.  Stay on topic within a range of subject matter they care about.
     
    For example if you have a work-at-home-Mom Facebook page, posting a story about potty training tips is a little off base.  Yes, it’s a parenting article, but it’s not about home business.

  2. You Don’t Have a Plan

    It’s really important to map out a social media marketing calendar and decide what are you promoting and when. Ensure you’re posting when you know the most amount of followers will see that post.
     
    Be sure to write articles and social media posts that are in alignment with your sales goals and ones that you know your ideal target market would appreciate reading.
     
    When the stars are aligned, magic happens.

  3. You’re Following Someone Else’s Blueprint For Success

    You know your target audience better than anyone.  What works for one social media guru may not work for you.
     
    It’s OK to get ideas and strategies, but the real test is when you try it.  Look at your analytics and see if your posts get the engagement and response you desired.
     
    Do what works for your business, not what you think is working for someone else.

  4. Your Metrics Are Not Specific Enough

    What is your social media goal for a campaign you are running?  Is it brand engagement, visibility, website traffic, lead generation or sales?
     
    Each goal will be measured with different tools.  Use the right tool to measure the metric that accurately reflects your achievement for that goal.

  5. You’re Too Promotional

    Don’t turn your social media accounts into a  non-stop, 24/7 promotion for your business.
     
    It’s important to offer a good mix of value-oriented posts that are sprinkled with some calls to action.  If you promote too heavily, you’ll turn off your audience and they will stop following you so make sure the bulk of your posts truly engages their interest.

  6. You Never Post Original Content

    Fans are attracted to you because of who you are and what you know.  They want to hear from you and see your original articles, freebies, surveys, quotes, and graphics.
     
    So give them something just from you instead of always sharing other people’s content.

  7. You Aren’t Engaging With Your Audience

    Posting and leaving without interacting with your followers is a sure-fire way to tell your followers not to bother commenting again.
     
    Monitor your pages and respond quickly to comments.  Write posts that ask readers opinions and thoughts and get engaged with the conversation.
     
    Social media has great potential to be a two-way conversation.  Be inviting, open, responsive and build relationships with your fans.

  8. You’re Not Patient Enough

    Rome wasn’t built in a day and social media won’t make you a millionaire quickly either.
     
    Social media marketing is part of a “Relationship” or “Inbound” marketing strategy, which is based on the premise of developing relationships with your followers over time.
     
    With this methodology, comes trust that once someone has grown to know, like and trust you, they will then be much more willing to purchase from you. It all takes time. Patience and consistency is the key to social media marketing success.

  9. You Don’t Have a Team To Help You

    If you’re doing your social media all by yourself, it may be time to delegate some of that task as part of your marketing team.
     
    A social media specialist can help you create a strategy, develop themes that align with your business, curate content, schedule posts, monitor comments and mentions, and analyze the results.
     
    Your social media team may also include a graphic designer to make social media graphics, a content curator/poster, and an analyst.  If you want to dive deep and boost your results, a team will help you get there faster.

Social media is a powerful way to build your brand exposure but going in with no strategy is akin to throwing spaghetti on the wall and hoping something sticks.

If you need help with your social media efforts, ask me about how we can help you or consider joining my monthly Social Blast membership group where you will learn proper strategies that will turn your failures into triumphs. Learn more about Social Blast here.

To your success,

P.S. If you liked what you read here, you will want to sign up for my newsletter where you’ll get notified every Tuesday of that day’s blog post. Click here to also receive our free website guide: www.UltimateWebsiteGuide.ca

P.P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

Here's 9 reasons why social media has become an epic fail for your business and what to do about itClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

5 Top Time Saving Social Media Management Tools

3 Top Time Saving Social Media Management Tools

Sharing content regularly on social media is critical for staying top of mind.  Yet many businesses struggle to find the time to do daily social media posts.

While sharing timely posts live is important, pre-scheduling social media posts using social media management tools helps you save time.

Scheduling social media posts helps business owners save timeClick To Tweet

Planning your posts also helps you to align your posts with upcoming promotions and topics on your marketing calendar.

Last but not least, planning and scheduling your posts ahead of time can give you peace of mind from the worry of “what should I post about today?”.

But with all the tools out there, how do you know what the right one is for your business?

Here’s some of our favourite social media management tools you’ll want to check out:

  1. Hootsuite

    Hootsuite is a free tool with a Pro option that helps you track and manage your social media posts.
     
    Not only does it allow you to manage what others are saying about your brand and enables you to interact with your social media accounts, but it also allows you to schedule posts on multiple social media channels.
     
    Hootsuite also has the ability to curate content to help with your content marketing efforts as well as schedule posts in bulk. Their auto-scheduler will also suggest ideal times to post content, based on your followers’ online activities.
     
    The free version let’s you manage up to three social media platforms.  If you need to manage more, you can upgrade to the professional version for $9.99/month.

  2. Buffer

    Save time on social media with Buffer. This free app (with upgrade options) makes social media scheduling simple.
     
    This tool makes it easy to share other people’s Tweets. Plus, you can spread your Tweets out throughout the day for greater visibility.
     
    One feature that makes Buffer a great tool is its easy integration with other social media tools like Followerwonk (an analytics tools) and Feedly (a news aggregator).

  3. Hubspot

    HubSpot’s Social Publishing tool makes it easy to publish to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. It also allows you to select a custom time to post your content.
     
    It gives you custom tools to discover the best times to publish your content to reach the biggest audience. Their Social Inbox tool allows you to optimize your engagement strategy.

  4. Postcron

    Postcron is another social media scheduling tool that allows you to schedule posts to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest and Instagram.
     
    Costs start from $8.33 per month with unlimited posts, a bulk uploader, content recommendations and the ability to add your watermark to image posts.
     
    Postcron also has the ability to re-use previously published material and can auto schedule posts based on when your users are prominently online.

  5. Meet Edgar

    Meet Edgar is more costly but behaves quite differently than the typical social media publishing tools described above.
     
    Not only is it a scheduling tool, but using a content library concept, it also thinks on your behalf by re-purpsosing your own best content and re-distributes it over a period of time. Essentially, the automated queue of content could fill your social media stream with valuable content forever.

Social Media Content Tips

While pre-scheduling posts can save time, you also need to supplement that with on-the-fly posts about where you are, who you are meeting with, big insights, and breaking news.

Followers want to know they are getting the inside scoop and to-the-minute updates on what you are up to with your social media.  It’s like a reward for being an active follower to know the big news first, before anyone else.

In addition to informational posts, social media graphics, and videos, it’s important to share regular calls to action. Always share an exciting way that followers can go deeper with you to experience your products and services.

Feeling Overwhelmed?

eVision Media has a team of experts who can help you identify content that resonates with your audience, plan posts to promote your top offers, and grow your engagement online. Ask about our done for you social media services today!

And if you are a do-it-yourselfer, you’ll want to check out our Social Blast membership program with easy-to -follow, step-by-step strategies and best practices that will help drive traffic to your website, create sales opportunities and grow your brand online.

To your success,

P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

Here’s 5 top recommended social media management tools from @eVisionMediaClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Is Social Media Really Worth it for a Small Business?

Is Social Media Really Worth It for a Small Business?

As a business owner and solopreneur, it’s really important to know that the time, energy, and resources you invest in your business provides a generous return on investment.

Social media platforms are a powerful tool that can help you market your business, but unless you know how to use it to generate tangible ROI for your business, is it really worth it?

Social Media can be a powerful marketing tool if you know how to get a ROIClick To Tweet

This article will provide you with a clear breakdown of all the information you need to make the best decision for your business.

How Much Time Does Social Media Require?

Even though having social media accounts is free (unless you spend money on ads), that doesn’t mean there are no costs associated to using these platforms to your benefit.

Since time costs money to business owners, let’s look at the amount of time the average business owner spends on social media.

According to a survey by Vertical Response, about 43 percent of small businesses spend about 6 hours per week on social media.

Writing and posting a weekly blog post can take 1-3 hours to do. So this means it takes a full day to write, schedule, and post to social media plus write and post a blog article each week.

It can take 8 hours a week to focus on social media for small businessesClick To Tweet

This is assuming you, the business owner would be doing everything required to fulfil these two marketing tasks.  If you decide to hire someone to help, then the money you pay out needs to be the ROI factor as opposed to your time.

The Benefits of Social Media

On the flip side let’s look at the advantages of social media for your business.  In general, there are 5 benefits a business owner can count on if using social media marketing:

  1. Relationship Building: Social media is an excellent way to build relationships with prospects. It provides an opportunity for multiple exposures to your fan base by using a mixture of information and calls to action.
  2. Lead Generation: Add followers to your email marketing list by sharing links to downloadable freebies on your social media accounts. This allows you to send follow-up emails and information that can lead to sales.
  3. Traffic Generation: SEO optimized blog posts can help your website rank higher for important keywords in the search engines. Plus, when you post blog articles, you can tell your social media followers about them and share the link to your blog to read more.
  4. Consistency: Staying top of mind requires frequent marketing touches. With many people spending hours a day checking their Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts on their smart phones, social media gives you lots of exposure to your target market.
     
    Sharing daily social media posts and weekly blog articles keeps the relationship with your customers strong.
  5. Customer Service: Social media offers an easy way for customers to reach you with questions, problems, or complaints about your products and services.

    This gives you a chance to respond immediately to address the issue.  Plus, giving the VIP treatment to customers in need shows that you are a company who cares and goes a long way towards building your reputation online.

Social Media Tactics That Drive Results

What actions should your business be doing regularly on social media to generate the best results?

Here are just a few of the tactics you should be employing on your social media channels:

  • Strategically planning social media content in alignment with sales goals
  • Curate content on a regular basis
  • Promote LinkedIn Pulse and blog posts on social media
  • Interact with other social media pages and groups to attract new followers
  • Create and share social media graphics, photos, videos and infographics
  • Listen and respond to comments on your own social media posts
  • Engage in social listening and respond to those who mention you
  • Promote high engagement posts with social media ads
  • Review analytics and reporting on engagement posts and reach
  • Plan opt-in freebies to share on social media for list building
  • Write and post blog posts
  • Look for guest blogging opportunities
  • and so on…

So you can see to really stay ahead of the game, realistically, you need to have a dedicated social media person or hire some help to do it right.

The ROI of Social Media

Because the benefits of social media efforts are often intangible, such as the amount of brand exposure your business would get, it’s often difficult to put an actual number to the ROI of your social media efforts.

But if you look at it this way, just a few new customers every month (depending on what you sell) would more than likely pay the costs of doing social media marketing for your business.

Plus, if you hire someone to manage your social media, it frees you to focus on other revenue-generating activities.

Bottom line, if you aren’t on social media, you are missing out on business. The opportunity cost of not marketing on social media is with lost visibility, less website traffic, slower list building, and weaker relationships.

To your success,

P.S. New to online marketing or you find it overwhelming and confusing? Check out Social Blast: eMarketing for Entrepreneurs. It’s a monthly group coaching program for those just starting out or wanting more advanced strategies to help with their online marketing and social media efforts.
CLICK HERE: www.socialblastcoaching.com

P.P.S. if you found this article helpful, please share it with your followers!

Is Social Media Really Worth it for a Small Business? This article helps decide:Click To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How to Build Your Visibility on Social Media

Today’s eTip is about getting better visibility in front of your ideal target market on Social Media, especially Facebook.

Let’s talk about social media and more specifically about Facebook. One of the things we need to do when we are on social media is that as business owners, our intention is to gain more visibility with our followers, right?

We want to be able to get in front of our ideal target market.

One way to do that, aside from posting, is to get active and get involved in other people’s posts.

You want to be looking for posts from your ideal target market and getting involved in the comments and the discussions that are happening in those posts.

Make sure you like them, comment on them, share them, offer compliments, offer your expertise if somebody asks a question that you can answer.

Being active with other people's posts is one way to build social media visibilityClick To Tweet

Don’t be pushy about it. Be genuine, be authentic and be with the intention of actually wanting to help and to serve as opposed to “oh here’s an opportunity to sell, sell, sell.” You don’t want to do that.

You can do this either in posts that you just see on your news feed or get involved in groups where you know your ideal target market is hanging out.

That’s where you want to really get into those discussions and offer your help as much as you can without being pushy and sales-y. People don’t like pushy and sales-y. They want to know you are there with a genuine interest to be of service and to be of help and that will get you better results in the long run, trust me on this.

I’d love to hear what you think – are you being strategic with your social media efforts or are you just happy to be on there and posting what you can?

Share your response below in the comments section or if you have a question, I’d be happy to answer.

Discover Step-By-Step How To Boost Your Social Media Marketing Results in just 21 Days

Take this 21 day social media challenge Sept 21 2016Starting Sept 21st, I’ll be sharing my best social media secrets with a small exclusive group of individuals in a new 21 Day Social Media Challenge.

I’ll be posting short, powerful tasks you can do to take your social media to the next level.

What’s great is these are simple things you can do in literally 5-10 minutes.

So if you are ready to ramp up your social media results for the Fall, you’ll definitively want to check this out here: www.evisionmedia.ca/21-day-social-media-challenge/

To your success,

PS, if you found this article helpful, please share it with your followers!

Here's 6 ways that will help rock your social media resultsClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

5 Social Media Mistakes That Are Killing Your Business Results

5 Social Media Mistakes That Are Killing Your Business Results

The online marketing world is evolving at a rapid pace since the emergence of social media.

Nowadays, many prospective clients will judge you based on your social media presence so it’s imperative to keep a professional profile and maintain your social media presence consistently, in order to give the best impression of your business image.

Entrepreneurs Beware: Your prospective clients will judge you based on your social media presence.Click To Tweet

After reading this article, you will have a better sense of social media, lessen the confusion you have around it and learn some tips on how to gain better engagement with your efforts.

Here are the 5 mistakes I commonly see entrepreneurs and small business owners make on social media:

  1. MISTAKE #1 – Not Having a Marketing Strategy in Place

    I’m sure you’ve heard the old adage before, “if you don’t know where you’re going, how will you know you’ve arrived?”

    The same thing applies in any business marketing efforts – you must have a strategy in place so you can see if your efforts are not only working, but be able to determine WHAT you should be doing in order to meet your business goals.

    The first thing you need is to implement a marketing strategy. This strategy should include social media but not be exclusive to it. Social media should only be one spoke in your overall marketing strategy.

    Your ultimate goal is to maintain a consistent social media presence. Whether you do that 100% yourself or you hire people like eVision Media to help supplement your efforts, this is a critical component to your success.

  2. MISTAKE #2 – Not Having Consistent Branding

    Another mistake I see is entrepreneurs not fully understanding the importance of a visual brand and keeping it consistent across EVERY marketing channel, including social media.

    This means having your logo on everything plus use consistent brand colours, fonts and style in order to present the same brand message across everything you do.

    Often I see disharmony between a Facebook page cover image and a website where there is little indication the two are related.

    Brand recognition is very important and shouldn’t be ignored. 

    This also applies to inconsistent messages. Be sure to keep a clear understanding of your values and business position so you don’t post things that are contradictory to that or give an incorrect impression about you.

  3. MISTAKE #3 –  Not Fully Defining Your Ideal Client Profile

    In order to know what to post on social media, you must know who your target market is. This is imperative that you fully understand who it is that you want to appeal to in your social media efforts.

    There’s no point in going through all the work of posting if you don’t know who it is that will be the most willing and able to do business with you.

    You end up sharing posts your followers are not interested in and they will be quick to unfollow as a result.

    RELEVANCY is key. Once you are clear on who you want to attract as your ideal client, then you want to focus on sending “that person” the kind of posts that appeal to them or provide information they are seeking.

  4. MISTAKE #4 – Trying to “Push” Too Much

    SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT A FORM OF ADVERTISING

    And don’t be fooled into thinking it is. If you do, then you will most certainly fail and not get near the results you are hoping for.

    It’s important to realize that social media is not a means for you to continually “Push” yourself upon your followers by trying to sell them or get them to sign up for something.

    There has to be an exchange of value happening or you WILL lose followers.

    I see a lot of new entrepreneurs not balance their promotional posts with informational posts and it’s important to understand to GIVE VALUE FIRST and build up relationships with your followers and then the natural tendency will be for them to want to know more about you and what you have to offer.

    I believe one of the main reasons why some people do this is that they are not seeing social media as a long-term strategy.

    It’s a long term commitment where you shouldn’t expect immediate results, but in the long run, you will  reap the benefits of your efforts.

  5. MISTAKE #5 – Not Posting the Right Message at the Right Time the Right Way

    This is where a lot of valuable time and energy is wasted.  For example, say someone is wide awake at 1am and decides this is the perfect time to get caught up on their social media.

    You’ll see posts about how they can’t get to sleep or how their cats look so cute curled up together on the bed.

    Meanwhile, their target market is fast asleep, not paying any attention and more importantly, don’t care even if they did see the post!

    What is happening is many people are being too random on social media and not strategic enough where they haven’t figured out WHAT their followers want to read from them or what time of the day and week they would most likely be online to read those posts.

    So be sure to look at your social media stats regularly to find this information out and use your target market analysis to help you determine what to write about.

I witness several more mistakes but these are top of mind. Are you guilty of any?

If yes, that’s why I formed an online group membership program called Social Blast, specifically to help entrepreneurs and small business owners get clarity on what to do, when to do it and how to do it.

We meet online once a month where I share step-by-step tips and strategies to save you time and help skyrocket your results with social media marketing for your business.

Click here to learn more about Social Blast.

To your success,

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

How to Crush it With Lead Generation on LinkedIn Pulse

How to Crush it With Lead Generation on LinkedIn Pulse

Blogging was promoted to be the promised land for entrepreneurs, business owners and marketers.

Do you ever spend time crafting a brilliantly written article, posting it on your blog, only to hear the sound of crickets?

So to boost the number of people seeing your article, you post it on social media and send a blast to your email list.

You check your web stats the next day only to see that your blog masterpiece has largely gone unseen.

What’s a frustrated marketer to do?

Enter LinkedIn Pulse, LinkedIn’s publishing platform

Many business owners are discovering that LinkedIn Pulse is breathing new life into their blog postsClick To Tweet

Here’s why you should make publishing on LinkedIn Pulse a top priority for your business:

  • Provides You An SEO Boost.
    LinkedIn is one of the top 10 most high-traffic websites on the Internet. When you publish content on LinkedIn Pulse, Google can index it quickly.

    Because LinkedIn is a high-authority site, when readers view your LinkedIn Pulse articles, it helps build authority and visibility for your content.

  • LinkedIn Followers Are Notified of Your LinkedIn Pulse Articles.

    When you publish an article on your blog, your audience is limited to your website visitors, your email subscribers, and your social media followers.

    However when you publish a new LinkedIn Pulse article, your entire network of LinkedIn connections is notified. This gives you exposure to a wide audience of new readers by appearing in your follower’s newsfeeds.

  • Drives Website Traffic.
    You can add an article byline at the end of your LinkedIn Pulse article with a call to action so you can capture leads with an opt-in offer or drive website traffic by directing them to your blog to read other related articles.

    Here’s an example of an article byline you can add to your LinkedIn Pulse articles:

    Want More Valuable Tips?

    • Read more of my LinkedIn posts here LINK
    • Get your free Special report here LINK
    • Setup a free Discovery Session here LINK

     
    About the Author (Your short bio here.)

    Learn more about my programs and services here: www.YourWebsite.com

  • Boosts Your Thought Leadership.
    LinkedIn Pulse categories your content by using the tags you add at the end of the article. Your article is shown to people searching for content on that topic.

    That targeted viewership helps to build your authority and trust with LinkedIn’s over 380 million members. The potential for massive exposure and visibility is incredible.

9 Tips for Writing LinkedIn Pulse Posts That Get Read

  1. Add an Eye-catching Article Image. Design a cover graphic that attracts attention. The ideal size for your LinkedIn Pulse article is 700 x 400 pixels.
  2. Create a Catchy Headline. Consider your headline your opening line. Describe your content in a compelling way. Your headline should capture readers’ interest and give them a reason to click through and read it. Add numbers. Use adjectives.
  3. Publish Consistently. Share new articles on LinkedIn Pulse regularly. Adding new content weekly like we do can build a regular following. Posting during the week during work hours will ensure your article gets the best visibility.
  4. Write Shorter Articles. For best performance, and ideal post length is 500-1000 words.
  5. Make it Scannable. Add subheaders and use images to break up content and lead readers through it.
  6. Tag your Posts. Select 3 tags that are most related to your article content. You have to choose from the existing tag categories that LinkedIn Pulse offers.
     
    Selecting the right tags helps your post be found by readers in your target audience and can boost your chances of being selected as a featured LinkedIn Pulse article.
  7. Engage with Readers Who Comment. Make sure you reply to those who comment or share your post. This is your chance to build rapport with those who have shown interest.
     
    That extra step can turn a one-time reader into a loyal follower. Plus the percentage of likes, reshares and comments of your content is what triggers LinkedIn to make it a featured article in Pulse.
  8. Kick it up with Images, Links, Videos, and Slideshares. Make your content more appealing by adding in graphics, outgoing links, and videos that relate to the article. Readers love when you share outgoing links to additional resources and websites mentioned in the article.
     
    Also, Google rewards LinkedIn Pulse articles with strong related links for further information to readers.
  9. Share your LinkedIn Pulse on Other Platforms. Just like you would share a blog post on social media, notify your Facebook and Twitter followers when you publish a new LinkedIn Pulse article.

 
If you’d like help publishing and creating killer content on LinkedIn Pulse, eVision Media has a team of professionals who can help create stand-out articles for lead generation and to build thought leadership for your business. Find out more about our eMarketing services today!

To your success,

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Busting the Myths About Social Media and Email Marketing

Busting the Myths About Social Media and Email Marketing

If you post it and you Tweet it they will come.  Right? Maybe not.

While Social Media is an excellent way to build rapport with potential clients, it can’t begin to compare with email marketing for driving sales.

Truth: Social Media doesn't equally compare to Email Marketing for driving salesClick To Tweet

Yes, social media is an important part of your marketing plan, but I see too many businesses putting all their eggs in the social media basket and being frustrated with the results.

Today we will look at the myths about social media and email marketing and why utilizing consistent email marketing is critical to building your client base and increasing sales.

Myth 1: A big list is always better than a small list

While having a large email list may sound impressive, it’s the quality of the list that matters.

How many of those subscribers are “real” ones versus spam?  How many of them are truly targeted customers? How many are just interested in getting whatever they can for free from you?

Having a small, responsive list will always outweigh having a “fat” list loaded with lukewarm prospects.

Myth 2: Unsubscribes are bad

It can be scary (and frustrating) when you send out a newsletter to see some people unsubscribe.

Actually that’s a good thing.  You have to have a list of prospects who are interested in what you have to say and your offerings.  If people leave your list, it means they weren’t a fit and it was very unlikely they would do business with you.

You are “not” everyone’s teacher.

Have faith that the people who are meant to be on your list will be grateful to hear from you.

Myth 3: You can really take advantage of your list and send lots of sales offers to them

Think of your email list as a group of people who want to have a relationship with you.  Relationships are not one sided.

In true friendships you give value, compassion, caring, and help.  If a relationship is “all about me” it’s uncomfortable for the other person.

Strive to keep balance in the messaging you share.  For every two email blasts sharing articles and helpful information, send one sales note.  Make sure the relationship feels like a win/win for your subscribers.

Myth 4: Social media is a proven way to grow your email list

Yes and no.

Social media can grow your email list and sales, but you need to be intentional and strategic about it.

Remember to post occasional calls to action with ways they can subscribe, get your free report, or join your new webinar.

You can:

  • Add a “sign up” call to action on your Facebook page.
  • Put a description and link on your Facebook or Twitter timeline with how they can sign up for your special report.
  • Drive them to your blog to read an article and have an opt-in offer on that web page.
  • Use Twitter’s campaign cards to get free report signups

Online Marketing is All About Finding the Perfect Mix

Every marketing channel has its place.  They all work together to help you attract a following, build trust, and build the rapport that leads to sales.

Social media is a fantastic tool for awareness; however, email marketing is still the top tool for driving sales.

In the end, capturing leads and building relationships while sharing offers is still the best proven way to boost your income.

If you are struggling to get the results you’d like online, eVision Media can help.  We can review your website, social media, and email marketing and help you create the right marketing mix to drive results for your business.  Contact us today to find out more.

To your success,

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

Will Social Media Algorithm Changes Kill Your Marketing Results?

Will Social Media Algorithm Changes Kill Your Marketing Results?

7 reasons why diversifying your social media efforts is becoming increasingly important

Every time a social media network updates their timeline algorithms, it sends marketers in a tizzy.

The latest outcry is about Facebook’s changes affecting a brand’s page reach. The same was true for the Twitter update made in their timeline algorithm. Instead of showing Tweets in order, they will be displayed according to relevancy.

But don’t let all the outrage frighten you.

Why to Diversify Your Social Media Efforts

All of these changes are one reason why it’s important not to put all your social media efforts into just one social media platform.

While you may be “winning the game” with tons of followers and all your best posts showing in follower’s timelines, it only takes one algorithm shift that can change everything.

We’ve seen It happen with Facebook before and it could easily happen on any social media channel that business owners use to help promote their business.

How to Bullet Proof Your Social Media

So what is one to do?  Diversify your efforts.

To avoid your social media marketing from getting killed, diversify your effortsClick To Tweet

Here are 7 compelling reasons why you should be focusing on more than just one social media channel:

  1. Smart entrepreneurs, marketers and business owners are discovering that sharing unique content across several social media platforms can smooth out any sudden changes that Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and others may make.
  2. Posting original articles, quotes, and graphics across various social media channels gives you multiple opportunities to share value with your fan base.
  3. It’s important to know that different fans “hang out” on their own favourite social networks too. So sharing your advice on multiple social platforms ensures no matter where your fans are online, you can share valuable information with them.

    Even if you only have time to share one post across multiple platforms, you can reword the post for each platform to make it more interesting and compelling for that particular audience.

  4. It gives you the opportunity to cross-pollinate and test markets to see which version of the post garners the most engagement. That allows you to “test market” for headlines, images, tone of message etc., which can be used later in promotional copy, landing pages, and ads.
  5. Posting on several social media networks allows you to maximize your lead-generation and traffic-driving efforts.
  6. Since you likely have different followers on each network, posting blog articles, offers, and calls to action on each social network allows you to double and even triple the outreach to potential prospects.
  7. Sharing unique content on your various networks let’s you nurture fans more quickly. Instead of getting just one marketing touch on Facebook, a raving fan can read your posts on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn and get a mega dose of your expertise. It’s three times the fun!

Bottom line – limiting your business to using just one social media platform for your marketing platform is wasting an opportunity to reach more targeted leads.

If you find yourself in overwhelm trying to generate high-value content on a consistent basis for your business, we can help you get more followers and generate high-interest content to keep your fans engaged.  Find out more about our social media services today!

To your success,

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".