Looking to establish or enhance a social media presence for your brand? Look no further. We’ll cover everything from Facebook Pages to Twitter Promoted Tweets, to Google+ links to AdWords, also exploring emerging ways to connect with your customers through social media.

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Top 10 Social Media Marketing Columns For 2013

ml-social2013-featured How do you use social media for a B2B business? How do you measure success in social media marketing? How do you keep up with the rapid changes at Facebook? These are just a few of the critically important questions answered by our expert contributors in 2013. Social media marketing truly became mainstream in 2013, which means marketers moved from "experimenting" to needing to be strategic and prove ROI. That trend was reflected in our most popular columns from 2013, in which Kelsey Jones discussed how to organize a social media content strategy and Courtney Seiter outlined how to choos [...]

Why Social Media Marketers Need To Follow The Weather

weather-rain-money-featured Before I get to the reasons why social media marketers need to follow the weather, let me state for the record that this all comes with the caveat that the predicting of weather patterns is not an exact science. I say this having just experienced this inexactness, if you will. A few weeks ago, a mere dusting was predicted for my neck of the woods, Philly, and we ended up getting a near blizzard. So, with that in mind and with the warning that the weather is quite volatile in nature -- literally -- here's why social media marketers need to follow the weather. It Affects Buying Patterns [...]

Holiday Social Media Marketing: Wonders & Blunders You Can Learn From

Screenshot: WestJet's Christmas Miracle Viral Video Facebook Interaction It's the most wonderful time of the year... if your marketing team is prepared! Having the right social media marketing campaign during the holiday season can mean the difference between plentiful gifts beneath the company tree or lumps of coal in the company stocking. Tensions are often high for retailers, consumers, and marketing departments alike during the busy season, as everyone works to stay on top of demand, trends, and the competition. Given that religious holidays are the reason for the season, some consumers can be a bit sensitive to brands and businesses capitalizing on the o [...]

Getting An Organization To Dip Its Toes Into Social (& Eventually To Dive In)

social-media-network-people When Robert Harles started his job at Bloomberg LP as Global Head of Social Media, one of his first hurdles was that there was an explicit policy: no social media. Fortunately, the organization's executives understood the value of social -- they just didn't know how to go about letting it happen in a highly regulated industry. Harles' first task was to rewrite that policy. Today, social media plays a key role throughout the media and financial information organizations. [caption id="attachment_67601" align="alignright" width="300"] Kotter's Eight Steps of Change[/caption] If your own org [...]

Twitter Rumor Roundup: 3 Active Tests & Enhancements Currently In The Works

Twitter Logo Much like rival Facebook, Twitter has been overly active since their November IPO. Over the past week many rumors, tests and trials have been uncovered so we've compiled a roundup of the top confirmed Twitter tests, reports and rumors over the past few days. Rumor: Edit Feature For Tweets In The Works Ever wish you could re-work any of the 140 characters that you just posted to your account? Well, your wish may soon be granted. According to The Desk, Twitter is working on a way for users to edit Tweets for a limited time after they've been posted. The article confirms this from three sources [...]

9 Phrases That Can Transform A Conversation

corporate-behavioural-change-conversations What's the one thing that makes social media marketing different from all other kinds of marketing? Social media marketing is the only kind that invites a conversation. It creates an opportunity to speak directly to customers and potential customers, right where they are. By now, most of us who work in social media know how important it is to be good stewards of this privilege by creating and participating in these conversations and responding to those who reach out to us. Whether it's a question, a comment, a problem or a suggestion, it deserves an answer. That's the beauty of social [...]

How To Use Brand Ambassadors To Drive Social Media Success

social-media-conversation-featured Whether you're the CMO of a Fortune 500 company or the webmaster of your burgeoning startup's website, social media efforts will be critical to your business in 2014. Increasingly, marketers are tasked with launching ever more interactive (and expensive) social media campaigns -- but CMOs are still challenged to provide more than the most basic ROI metrics about these efforts. Marc Fischman, co-founder of social media tools firm Hyperactivate, is of the opinion that providing measurements for social media promotions will be the focus of all marketers in the coming year, because marketing [...]

If Facebook’s Not Cool, Brands Don’t Have To Be Either

high voltage Christmas comes round every year and so, it seems, do discussions about whether or not Facebook is still cool and/or whether it is being abandoned by teens. On a recent earnings call, Facebook's Chief Financial Officer, David Ebersman, seemed to suggest that maybe younger audiences had started to tire of the social network: We are pleased that we remain close to fully penetrated among teens in the U.S. Usage among U.S. teens overall was stable from Q2 to Q3, but we did see a decrease in daily users, specifically among younger teens Many took this as a sign that the sky was falling. But, sinc [...]

Are Twitter Ads Right For Your Local Business? How To Decide

twitter-cupcakes-1379072601 With Twitter blasting out of the gate with IPO news, not to mention 230+ million monthly active users, many local marketers have been left wondering: when does it make sense for a local business to test Twitter ads? And, how much time and energy should be devoted to Twitter with the myriad of other social media platforms out there? For certain local businesses, Twitter can serve as a terrific channel for boosting their online presence, raising overall awareness, attracting new followers and leads, as well as driving more traffic to their website and customers to their doorstep. Twitter [...]

Fans Or Frenemies? 3 Tips For Facebook Customer Service Crisis Management

facebook-dislike-featured No matter the budget, simply posting content on social media is not enough to make the most of your social media marketing dollar. Many marketers know repeat customers drive the most business, which may explain why seventy-six percent of local merchants today look to social media to engage existing customers (Constant Contact's Technology Pulse Q3, 2012). But what happens when you're publicly engaged by an existing customer on Facebook who doesn't have nice things to say? Just as the sun rises and sets, so will there be angry, vocal customers sharing their thoughts with the world by [...]

What’s Going On Beneath All Those Social Media Interactions?

social media databases Google captures many images which contain data that can't be easily deciphered by machines, such as scans of old manuscripts and photographs of signs. One way they've helped to overcome that is to use their reCAPCHA, where a user is asked to decipher a string of numbers or letters in an image.  If several people decipher a particular image in the same way, there is a high likelihood that their interpretation is correct. It's one of the most elegant crowdsourcing projects ever. Making sense of data is at the heart of Google's endeavors. But that's a silly statement. Data is information, and [...]

How To Be Eternally Indispensable In Your Social Media Job

social-media-marketer-costume Now that there's only a smidgen left of 2013, it's fair to say that the year wasn't a giant win for social media marketers -- at least in terms of public perception. Up until recently, brands have been clamoring to shore up a social media staff and extol the business-saving virtues of Twitter, Facebook and the like. But this year brought a slight change of heart. In 2013, we were too whiny. We were, um, less than bright (actual phrasing NSFW, as is that link). No one believed we had real jobs. Entire accounts were created only to mock us. The social media editor fell. The social media [...]

Making Media Truly Social

shutterstock_people What is social media? I know it's a strange question considering the title of this column, but I think it's one worth asking. Wikipedia, that great social encyclopedia, defines it as follows: Social media refers to the means of interaction among people in which they create, share, and/or exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks. Now, this is probably a great definition of social media as we have come to understand it -- but it is one that is, I feel, unnecessarily restricting. I've long felt that all media can be social, in-so-much as they can be used to [...]

Social Media Checklist For New Websites & Businesses

social media As a startup company or small business, it is no longer an option to ignore social media as a means of communication, promotion and possibly even recruitment or revenue. That's true for any business new to the internet, as well. However, diving head-first into an ever-expanding realm of social media networks can feel overwhelming at best. Each platform has not only a unique audience of users, but also its own idiosyncrasies when it comes to usernames, imagery and usage. Below is a step-by-step guide to establishing business accounts on the top eight social networks. As time and personnel [...]

3 Tips For A Holly Jolly Social Media Holiday Season

santa-computer-social-media-featured When it comes to the holiday shopping season, retailers and businesses from sea to shining sea all have their own set of apprehensions and concerns. And, as each year passes, the need for businesses and brands alike to have a social media plan in place for the holidays is paramount. For example, Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become ubiquitous in marketing conference rooms since they came into vogue -- and they are very much at the heart of social media marketing. According to AddShoppers, a leading onsite social platform for innovative retailers, on average, social traffic converted 7 [...]

Tapping Into Community Research With Facebook Graph Search

The digital marketing world is aflutter with talk of entities and structured data, and how both are contributing to the rise of semantic search. Google has rolled out its Hummingbird update, while Facebook has its Graph Search. Both represent big leaps forward in easing searchers' access to the information they're seeking. The creators of social media platforms are amassing some of the largest databases ever known. All of the data is being input on a volunteer basis by all of us who participate in social media. Much of the time, that data is being input in a way that has structure; a struct [...]

Why CEOs Need To “Get” Social Media

ceos get social media Mark my words: If it isn't already, social media is going to be like email for all tech users: indispensable. It is no longer acceptable for CEOs to cast social media aside because they either don't understand it or don't want to mess with it. Just like the doubters that thought email wouldn't go anywhere, social media has changed the way our society communicates today. This shift has been slow going for marketers trying to convince their bosses and those at the top that social media is worth their time. But we should be past the point of having to convince CEOs to approve social media m [...]

20 Quick-Win Tactics For Building A New Social Media Presence

Engine start button Have you ever noticed that all the social media experts who tell you not to worry about fans and followers usually already have plenty of both? It's great to have smart, long-term social media goals like traffic back to your website and even conversions. But we all have to start somewhere. And sometimes, where you're starting from is the very beginning. When you're building a brand-new Facebook page, Twitter account, Pinterest profile, Google+ page or other social media presence, the rules are different. For a while, your only objective is getting your audience to a minimum critical mass [...]

R.I.P. EdgeRank: How To Optimize For Facebook’s News Feed Algorithm

facebook-newsfeed-featured As you may have heard, Facebook EdgeRank is no more. A Facebook insider confirmed that the term [EdgeRank] is no longer being used internally (and hasn't been for over two years) and noted that there are currently over 100,000 factors that go into what a user sees on their News Feed when users log into Facebook. While Facebook has not explicitly told us what these factors are, they have shed some light on  the process involved in developing their most recent ranking algorithm update. The company surveyed thousands of users, asking questions to help determine what exactly makes a "high-qua [...]

The Value Of Social To TV

twitter mic For many years, the main question one would hear from people who worked at the major digital publishers and platforms was, "How can we take budget from TV?" Meanwhile, network representatives would ask how they could ensure that they didn't suffer the same fate as the newspaper companies. But now, increasingly, the questions on both sides are around how they can better work together. Here, we'll take a look at some of the ways. Selling Social Data Since its inception, Web advertising has been sold on its accountability, which was originally considered to be a benefit. But as click-through [...]

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