Social Media

Why Social Media is Important For Your Business

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest: If you own a business, chances are you have heard of one or more of these social media giants. According to one recent study, 91% of retail brands are using multiple social media platforms to grow their customer base. Why is this?

Heightened Visibility

In the economy of brand awareness, over 90% of “hyper growth” companies cite social media as their cash crop. Social media platforms allow a business the potential to reach millions of people, due to the sheer volume of users in each network. And if you believe it’s mostly teenagers running the online scene, you should know that almost two-thirds of American adults use social media currently (a figure which only continues to grow).

Emphasis On Transparency

Social media is as personal as the name suggests. “Friends” and “followers” are automatically updated on all content put forth by your company and may respond through likes, mentions, and messages. Transparency is the cornerstone of millennial values; allowing customers to communicate both praise and criticism directly to your company through social media can grow brand loyalty by fomenting positive, empowered relationships.

Creative Branding Opportunities

How do you wish to portray your business to the world? How should it look, feel, or sound to an audience? If it were a person, how would it speak? Where would it hang out, and with whom? The answers to each of these questions reflects your brand. Social media exists for branding; even personal accounts on Facebook or Twitter encourage individuals to craft their own online identity through photo sharing, status updates, or a brief bio. Developing a unique “voice” through the tools provided by one or more social media platforms is an easy way to develop your business’s brand.

Access to the Modern World Of Marketing

With so many users globally, social media is reshaping the classic human interaction experience. Joining the networking communities of Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram will keep you current with today’s marketing trends, as well as project a relational, innovative image to your customers.

For more reasons why social media is important for your business, please contact us at Speaking Socially Media today.

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Warning: You’re Losing Money by Not Using Content Marketing

Operating a business takes coordination of many processes and people. All of which require small adjustments over time as customers and technology and products change. In particular, your marketing department works tirelessly to keep up with getting your company in front of as many of your ideal customers as possible. No doubt, you are using social media to connect and engage with customers. You are likely using some form of search marketing so that customers will find you with a search for your business or product. You may not be using content marketing. We will explain 3 important reasons why you are leaving money on the table, if you are not creating content on a consistent basis:

1) Providing Value to Your Customers

By offering high quality content to your audience, you have the opportunity to become valuable. And value attracts interest and ultimately sales. Content marketing is a perfect vehicle in which to provide value to your audience and build a relationship with them until they are a customer.

2) Allows You to Out Produce Your Competition

By creating more good content, more frequently than your competition, you can generate a large competitive advantage. It boils down to getting your content distributed in front of as many people as possible, and increasing your likelihood of getting the attention of your prospects. Additionally, it levels the playing field and allows smaller businesses the chance to take down industry titans by creating content that is better than older and established competitors.

3) Builds Relationships

By incorporating guest bloggers into your content marketing, you develop an interconnected web of relationships that help you reach more people. And by guest blogging on other business websites, you get access to their audience as well. You can leverage these new relationships in many ways to expand your network and influence.

By looking at these important reasons why content marketing is essential, you can ensure you are playing in this game and not losing money by not taking advantage of this strategy.

Please contact us for more information on how to use content marketing to drive your business growth.

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Facebook Boost: 3 Compelling Reasons to Pay Small to Return Big

If a tree falls in the forest with no one around, does it make a sound? If you pay for a large Facebook Boost with no specific demographic targeted, do you expect a big return?

You might get one, but it will be small.

Not everyone that will see your ad will have a problem that you can solve. In fact, people ignore ads that have no relevance to them.

To be clear here, you do want to draw more customers to your posts in order to convert them to customers, right?

Great! Let’s discuss 3 Compelling Reasons to Pay Small amounts for targeted Facebook boosts to Return Big. You will thank us for this at the end.

You don’t spend tons on money if you don’t yield hoped for results. The days of businesses attempting to grow their Facebook community organically is dying. Besides using social media, blogs or links on your website to drive people to your Facebook, you must pay for target boosts.

You can start small, make  tweaks, and see what happens (make sure you put a limit on spending amounts). If you don’t achieve your desired results, you’re not out of a lot of money. Here’s an example of how a company paid small and returned big!

Nobody likes spam, it’s a bad look for your company. Spam is simply defined as irrelevant or inappropriate messages sent on the Internet to a large number of recipients. Isn’t that what some companies are doing when they are not targeting a specific niche and bombarding people with irrelevant ads?

When a person sees many immaterial posts, emails, etc, they find a way to make that media stop so it doesn’t continue cluttering up their lives. Also, it makes your company look bad in the customer’s eyes that you keep sending them information that they care nothing about.

They could decide to post negative comments to their social community spreading negativity about your brand. 86% of customers say that seeing a bad comment impacts their buying decision.

With targeting your community, you solve their problems. Many of your customers are shaking their heads on what to do next for their business or even certain situations in your person lives. Along comes your post and it helps them tremendously.

Without you targeting your boosts to a specific demographic, your boost would fall on a blind eye and your effort wasted.

It doesn’t make sense to throw a dart at a dart board blindfolded, hoping to hit a bulls-eye. Drill down and be as specific as possible on who you are trying to reach with each Facebook boost. Contact Us and we will help you boost your business by attracting the right customers.

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The Power of the Facebook Boost

To boost, or not to boost? Facebook is actively squashing your reach, and if you want to get noticed by more than friends and family, a Facebook Boost may be just what the doctor ordered.

With some careful targeting and thoughtful construction, you can get the most from a post without breaking the bank.

Think about who your clients and customers are. Where do they live? Are they close by? Do they drive to get to you? How far?  If you’re a restaurant, most likely your base clientele are within a few miles. Set your distance accordingly. If your customers are all within 15 miles, setting the distance for 50 miles is wasting your exposures but you may want to set it for 20 or 25 miles to try to get some new folks from a little further away to give you a shot.

Who are your competitors? You can target a boosted post to people who already “like” your competition. They’ll see your post whether they’ve bought in to what you’re doing or not.

What are the other things your customers might be interested in? Really give this some thought. If you’re a nicer restaurant or a high-end shop your customers may be into golf, so target people who like golf.

You don’t have to box yourself in. Get crazy, experiment a little, take a chance or two. You’re not going to break anything and if it works, you win!

Now, how much do you spend? You can have a lot of success with a carefully crafted message and a $4 boost over four days or so. That’s a dollar a day.

Wouldn’t you spend a dollar a day to reach a new group of people?

Got questions? Contact us! We can help!

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Which Social Media Platform is Right for your Small Business

Focusing primarily on one social media platform is the best way to grow your audience and gain loyal customers.

But how do you know which platform is right for your type of business?

To help you decide, here is a brief guide to the type of customer you will find on each of the 3 most popular:

  • Facebook

Facebook is still the king of social media, with Pinterest and Twitter right on its heels. If you’re not sure which platform to focus on, Facebook is still a safe bet. Businesses that require a lot of interaction, host giveaways or require a lot of explanation do best by using this platform the most.

  • Pinterest

Although a newer platform, Pinterest is growing more quickly than any other at the moment. The audience here is predominately women. Businesses that rely on visual imagery for the bulk of their advertising would be wise to spend some time growing their Pinterest platform. Anything related to gardening, beauty, weddings, decor, or recipes does especially well here.

  • Twitter

Twitter is the platform you want to use for announcements or breaking news as it’s more of a fast-paced environment. Companies focused on marketing, finance, and other topics that don’t use a lot of visual imagery do best to focus on Twitter.

Of course there are several other up-and-coming social media platforms that are catching up in subscribers, such as Instagram and Snapchat; but the 3 detailed here are still the chosen platforms for most small businesses.

Narrow your focus and choose one platform to devote your time to. You’ll find that using this tactic will have the biggest impact on audience participation.

Contact us today to find out how we can help manage your growing social media demands.

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Why Social Media is Important for Your Business

Without a doubt, social media is all the rage among people of just about every demographic. In fact, one would be hard-pressed to find someone without a profile on at least one social media website. Due to its popularity, social media is frequently used by businesses as a marketing tool. Here are some reasons why social media is important for your business.

Increase Brand Awareness

The best way to boost sales is increasing brand awareness. After all, if no one knows about the products and services you offer, it’s unreasonable to expect sales to go through the roof. Not only does social media allow you to seek out potential customers, but it also allows them to find you. Many customers are turning to social media to find new brands to do business with.

Engage with Customers

More and more consumers care about the human side or “personality” of a brand. Social media allows you to engage with your customers and keep them thinking about your brand. The customers that love your brand will want the opportunity to tell you that.

Of course, the customers that don’t love your brand will also want to express their opinion. While the idea of encountering negative comments may be scary, social media serves as the perfect platform to rectify these concerns. If you deal with negative comments in a constructive way, more than likely these negative comments will become positive.

For more information about the importance of social media for businesses, don’t hesitate to contact us.

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Dealing with Social Media Trolls

Dealing With Negative Reviews

Your response shows potential customers how your business deals with complaints.

Some refer to them as haters. They usually make you want to fire off a quick response in return because they’ve evoked negative emotions. A social media troll is one who deliberately posts negative comments or reviews to provoke others. Whether true or not, their intent is to cause trouble in your social media communities.

Customers are looking for reviews to see positives as well as how a business responds to complaints. The way you react to trolls can impact your reputation. Here are a few tactics to keep in mind.

1) Always respond

It’s important to always engage with a comment, whether it is positive or negative. A response shows that you took time to try and find a resolution.

2) Restate The Complaint

In your response repeat back what the customer is posting about. Is the complaint about your company or product factual?

3) Highlight Your Strengths

Show the customer that your products or services have a reputation.

4) Don’t Make Excuses

Don’t place blame on an employee or situation. Take ownership of the complaint.

5) Resolve the Issue

An offer is usually the easiest way steer the complaint towards a position outcome. This doesn’t have to be extravagant, a simple $5 gift card can often make a customer happy.

6) Don’t Be Afraid To Ask for Proof

If you feel the complaint is fraudulent don’t be afraid to ask for proof of the complaint. You loyal fans will see this complaint for what it is and support your actions.

There’s no way to completely stop negative comments or reviews, but using these tips you can help you keep them under control should you find yourself going head-to-head with a troll on your brand’s page.


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Traditional advertising agencies vs. digital marketing agencies

Have you been looking for help with your marketing? Your online presence plays a big factor in your marketing success.

What’s the difference between a digital marketing agency and a traditional advertising agency? A lot. However, many traditional advertising agencies claim to offer a full suite of digital services, when, in fact, they do not.

This isn’t a big secret. But, traditional ad agency sales pitches can seem like smoke and mirrors, hiding the fact that they are not capable of providing true digital marketing services such as search engine optimization (SEO), social marketing, and efficient website redesign and development– and let’s not forget the ever more critical content and UX strategy now necessary for any brand to truly succeed online.

This is why you see award winning creative ads, like the Susan G. Komen Addy Gold winning “Race Never Ends” by GSW with so few YouTube view counts (862 at last check after over 12 months online). The ad is remarkable, it makes an impact, it stirs your soul on an emotional level and may actually persuade you to donate or join the race – but where is it online? Perhaps that wasn’t the intent or strategy behind the ad, but if not, why not? Clearly the ad would have done very well online and the Komen Foundation would have been better served to hire a true digital marketing agency to ensure the video also had an impact online.

If you’re looking for inspiration, check out the past year’s DoGooder award winners on YouTube. Watch the videos and then find their website’s and the campaigns behind them. Video is just one element of a successful marketing and advertising strategy in today’s segmented digital marketing world. Same goes for your website, your social marketing platform or your direct mail piece. Every element of your brand’s marketing needs to be built for digital in one way or another, and the truth is, most traditional agencies simply can’t offer digital services.

To that end, many brands are now pairing agencies together, rather than turning to one traditional agency for all of their services or to one digital agency. If you’re a CMO, marketing director or brand manager, I don’t need to tell you how expensive hiring the wrong agency can be. Sure, there’s the dollar figure and investment, but even more costly is the time lost. In digital, every day you’re not truly optimizing your brand online is a day lost to the competition that you’ll never gain back. That’s why you have to hire the best digital marketing agency. End of story.

Check these scenarios. If you’re in one of them, there’s a solution below.

You’re bound to a large traditional agency by contract or political obligation.

Hire a digital agency to compliment their work with an audit or content strategy. Depending on the size of your website, these audits and content strategies cost between $300-$3,000. A small price to pay to ensure the traditional agency’s beautiful creative work actually succeeds online. Digital agencies, like ours, play very well with traditional agencies.

You love your traditional agency and don’t want to offend them by questioning their work.

First of all, you’re being too nice. This is your business and/or your career and if your agency isn’t bringing in the results you’ve spelled out then it’s okay to question the quality of their work. Now, clearly, there are always egos involved and  for a true agency partnership to succeed your approach as the client is paramount to that success. Introduce the idea of a digital agency audit as something that can help the traditional agency’s team to succeed. And be sure to choose a digital agency that will play nice with your traditional agency. Make it clear to both sides that the relationship will not be a pissing match or competition for the other’s work. “I’m happy with your agency for this reason, but we need this agency for this reason. Play nice, or I’ll have to find an agency that can do both.”

You can’t afford to hire both a traditional and digital agency, but your brand has to perform online.

Skip the traditional agencies all together, and explore a relationship with a creative digital marketing agency like Speaking Socially. We are a full service advertising agency with digital marketing at our core. So, the digital is in the bag and the traditional is just gravy. Your campaigns are then designed from the outset to perform offline and online.

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Choose the Right Social Media Platform

The first step in social marketing is to choose the right social platform to market your business. Even if you plan to use two or three different platforms, you still need to choose the ones that suit your company the best. What works for one company may not work for you. Therefore, you have to determine which one to use based on your specific needs.

You need to go where your customers/clients are!

A good place to start is with your targeted audience because different age groups are attracted to different social media platforms. If you’re targeting another business, LinkedIn may be your best option.

Consider what type of content you’ll be posting most of the time and this will also help you choose the right platform. Instagram or Pinterest are excellent choices for restaurants because of the visual effect you can achieve with photos while YouTube can work for almost any type of business.

The reason for using social media will also determine which platform to choose. For example, if you want to enhance brand awareness, Twitter is a great option but Facebook may be a better choice if you’re interested in getting consumer feedback.

Choosing the right social media platforms for your business will help to ensure you get the most from your marketing efforts.

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Four Great Social Media Strategies

Social media is a great way to enhance brand awareness and drive traffic to your site but before you set up your account, it’s a good idea to have a plan outlining your strategies first. This will help you stay focused on your goals so you can get the most from your online marketing. Below are four great social media strategies to help you get started:

1. Use more than one social media platform- This will allow you to reach a wider audience because some people prefer Facebook while others prefer Twitter or Instagram and so forth.
2. Encourage users to communicate with you- When you encourage engagement, you’ll generate more interest in your account, learn more about your followers and attract new fans.
3. Be selective who you follow- You can’t follow everyone so choose the people you do follow carefully. You want to be associated with those who have a positive influence in your industry.
4. Set goals and monitor your account- You need to have some idea of what you want to accomplish with your social marketing, so set your goals and then monitor your accounts to see what’s working and what needs changed.

You can use these four strategies with any social media platform to help you get started.

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