Cincinnati Social Media Lunch – Social Media and SEO – August 18

A NEW Social Media Lunch Session is coming up!  We are extremely happy to invite business professionals to our VERY popular monthly lunch session on August 18, 2011. During this session we’ll cover the integration of Social Media Marketing and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) giving you a detailed explanation on how to grow your business though integrating these two fast growing Internet strategies. Many businesses approach SEO and Social Media Marketing with a piece-by-piece strategy and miss the bigger picture of integration.  In reality, SEO and Social Media combined together can help companies build their presence online and achieve greater exposure for their brand.  In this Social Media Session you’ll gain a clear understanding of how Social Media Marketing and Search Engine Optimization complement each other and in turn help you create a comprehensive Internet marketing plan for your business.

Details about this Social Media Lunch Session:

  • Topic: Integrating Social Media Marketing and SEO  ***REGISTER NOW!
  • Date: August 18, 2011
  • Time: 11:30 am – 1:00 pm
  • Investment: $27 ***Lunch is included!
  • Special Offer: Buy 4 Lunches Get 1 FREE
  • Location: Boot Camp Digital,  1600 Main Street, M1, Cincinnati OH, 45202
Getting to the top of Google Search Results (which is known as search engine optimization) is one of the most important marketing tools for any business. There are 1,000,000,000 searches on Google every day, and if businesses are not on the front page of search results they are missing out on huge potential opportunities. Social Media can be one of the best drivers of search engine results, and this session will focus on how to help your website get to the top of search engines. “Social Media is not only a terrific way to connect with your customers, it also gives businesses great opportunities to improve their online visibility and brand awareness,” says Krista Neher, Boot Camp Digital CEO, “Combined with search engine optimization businesses can start to drive sales by bring qualified and motivated traffic to their websites. The session will include a free lunch with an educational presentation, interesting case studies and an opportunity to network with other professionals interested in social media marketing.

Please register in advance, as our last social media seminar SOLD OUT!

 

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Small Business Social Media Speaker: 10 Ways Small Businesses can use Social Media

I know that a lot of small businesses are interested in social media marketing to grow their business.  I speak with thousands of small business owners a year (probably just like you) who hear about social media but don’t know exactly how they can get value from social media. I have worked with many of these business owners to help them find success in social media, and I know that small businesses can get results using social media marketing. I know first hand that social media can provide a better ROI than traditional marketing methods.  Social Media marketing can deliver results when used strategically and with the right plan. Here are 10 of the most common ways that small businesses can use social media to grow their business.  In no particular order, here are 10 ways that small businesses can use social media:

1) Share Deals and Promotions on Twitter

Twitter is a powerful way to share deals and promotions with your customers (and future customers)!  Big companies like Dell Outlet have sold millions of dollars through twitter, but it works for small companies too.  Naked Pizza, a small pizza store in New Orleans had their highest ever sales day from a twitter promotion.  Vista Prints sold $25,000 directly through twitter in their first year.  Find and connect with your target audience and give them irresistable offers on Twitter.

2) Share news and Updates on Facebook

Don’t have a fan page yet?  If you have fans or customers who are passionate about your business you should have a fan page.  Use it to connect with customers and  keep them up to date on your new products or services.  I was recently getting my car fixed and found that the mechanic frequents the same neighborhood bar as I do.  He told me that he checks  out their Facebook page every day to see what food and drink specials they have.  This bar has a creative new drink special for Happy Hour every day and a different free food item available. Whether is it food and drink specials, new items in your store, new industry news or regulations a facebook fan page can be a powerful resource to keep your customers up to date.  Over 1/3 of people who are fans of companies on Facebook are fans for this reason – to stay up to date.

3) Network on LinkedIn Groups

Lots of small businesses and professionals grow their businesses by networking with people.  Meeting people and sharing helpful knowledge drives business over time.  People do business with people they know, like and trust. LinkedIn groups allow you connect with others based on a shared interest.  You can join a group and contribute to discussions or share interesting news.  By using LinkedIn to build relationships you can earn new customers over time.

4) Connect with Prospects with a Webinar

Webinars are becoming increasingly popular ways to connect with prospects adn provide value to customers.  Webinars are virtual and web-based.  A webinar is typically hosted around a specific topic and people sign up, call in and log-in on their computer and they can watch and listen to a live session on a specific topic. Webinars are very popular in categories that are high-information.  Most B-to-B business fall in to this categoy, but it also works for consumer products.  If people are looking for knowledge or information on your subject area, a webinar can be a powerful tool to share information with them and position yourself as a leader.

5) Be a Thought Leader with a Blog

Blogs are very popular for a variety of reasons (we’ll discuss one more of them later in this post).  One of the reasons is that a blog can establish you as an expert and thought leader  in your industry.  If people trust you and see you as knowledgeable they are more likely to do business with you. Run a gym? Share workout tips.  Real Estate Agent? Share posts highlighting the people and events in your neighborhood.  Restaurant? Show how you make signature drinks or menu items.

6) Connect with Customers and Prospects with an email newsletter

So maybe *technically* this isn’t social media, but it is relatively simple and cheap for most businesses to create a newsletter.  Constant Contact and MailChimp offer services for under $25 a month and are easy to use. An email newsletter can keep your customers and prospects up to speed on news, deals and promotions.  Email remains  the preferred communication method of most people (1:10 preference over social media) to stay up to date.

7) Join  an online community

There are online communities for almost everything these days.  Seek out a discussion forum or community that is specific to your business and participate! You can connect with customers (or potential customers) and really learn about them.  What are they interested in?  What do they talk about? What do they want and need in products?  Participating and listening to communinities that are comprised of your business target can improve your product but also lead to sales as you build relationships.

8) Monitor and Respond to your Reviews

There are many business review sites – from product reviews on amazon to restaurant and store reviews on yelp to complaints on The Ripoff Report.  Whatever your business line, chances are there are review sites that are relevant.  Even Facebook has included reviews on fan pages.  Google has reviews in their listings. Look for and respond to reviews (both good and bad).  Saying thanks to a good review can build an evangelist and encourage word-of-mouth.  Responding to a negative review can help clarify the situation.  Showing that you care about negative reviews and plan to take action shows your side of the situation to the hundreds of people who view the review.

9) Get Found on Search Engines with a Blog

Another great reason to start a blog is to get traffic from search engines.  Because blogs are content rich (you typically create content for them on a regular basis) search engines give traffic to sites with blogs. In almost anything that you search for you’ll find a number of blogs show up in search results.  If people find you business through search a blog can increase the probability that you will show up in results.  This leads to traffic and (hopefully) sales.

10) Generate Awareness with a Video

Videos can be great ways to connect with your audience.  A picture is worth a thousand words and a video is worth a million!  Video is a great way to share information – whether it is a video showing how you make a dish, customers talking about their satisfaction or a video demo of your product – videos are powerful tools. Create a video for your business to make a deeper connection with your audience.  Whatever your business there are many different creative ways to use and share videos. This list isn’t exhaustive – it is simply a handful of the tactics and tools that are included in the Social Media Action Pack.

How are you using social media for your small business?

70% of HR Pros have Disqualified a Candidate Because of their Online Reputation

According to a new survey by Microsoft, Online reputation matters more than you think.
  • 70% of HR Professionals have disqualified a candidate due to their online reputation.
  • Only 15% of consumers think that their online reputation matters in their job search.
Yikes. HR Pros and Recruiters are actively using online reputation in assessing candidates, yet candidates don’t seem to think it matters.  Clear disconnect.  If you are looking for a job WAKE UP! It matters.  Worry about your reputation before you are looking for a job.
  • 63% of consumers think that their online reputation may impact their personal/professional life.
  • Less than 50% consider their reputation when posting comment.
Again, clear disconnect.  You know that what you post online could impact your persona life, but when posting content online you don’t think about it.  Think. Before you post something online think about how it impacts your personal reputation.  Are you OK with that? There is Good News. 86% of HR professionals (and at least two thirds of those in the U.K. and Germany) stated that a positive online reputation influences the candidate’s application to some extent; almost half stated that it does so to a great extent. So think before you post.  It may make more of a difference than you think.

Social Media – Should your Intern do It?

This is a question that comes up over and over again.  I’ve even been asked to train interns at a University because their employers wanted them to “do social media marketing”.  Why was I training these youngsters who are supposed to know everything about social media and the internet?  Because they know how to use it socially, but not professionally. It would be like asking the kid who watches the most TV at your office to “do tv advertising”. The fabulous Benjamin BakerThe reality is that while younger people understand how social media works, they lack an understanding of how to use it strategically as a part of an integrated marketing strategy.  They know how to add friends and post photos, and sure they have probably even fanned a few brands.  But that doesn’t mean that they know how to represent your brand and drive business value online. Marketers need to stop being intimidated by the technology. Learning the technology isn’t hard.  It isn’t hard to create a facebook account, or even a page.  It isn’t hard to start a blog.  It isn’t hard to set up a twitter account.  The technology is the easiest part.  These sites are designed so that an average (or probably well below average) intelligence individual can use them. The hard part is the strategy.  Who is the target market?  What are they interested in?  What can I talk to them about?  What will engage them and help me break through the noise and clutter?  How can I bring my brand equity and positioning to life?  What sites is my target on?  What opportunities are there for brands and marketers on these sites? Who in my organization should handle social media? These are just some of the strategic questions that need to be answered. Can an intern answer these?  Maybe.  Do they have training and coaching from an internal person who understands these things?  Is this similar to the way you handle other media?  Do you have an intern “figure out tv” or “tell us what to do with print”? Social media is tricky.  It is new.  The rules change.  The downside can be big. That doesn’t mean that you can’t tackle it correctly and strategically. Don’t treat social media like the ugly duckling and pawn it off on the most junior person in your organization.  One of the biggest reasons that companies fail to see results from their social media efforts is that they don’t give it adequate attention.  ROI and results are there – and companies who do it right are benefiting from this. I gave this answer at a presentation before, and someone in the audience asked if I was just trying to build my business by making it sound hard. The reality is that I’m not asking you to think of social media or your digital strategy any differently than how you think of your other media.  Treat it the same way.  Be strategic.  Have a plan.  Execute consistently and with excellence.  Then you’ll see ROI.

News: Most Popular Facebook Fan Pages

Want some more up-to-date Facebook training for 2012?

Don’t worry! We are now offering online Facebook marketing training to give access to our top-rated social media training to people all over the world! This training course is one of our Pin Point Programs, which are newly-launched 90 minute social media online classes about the hottest topics in social media!
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Ever curious which Facebook Fan Pages are the most popular? Wonder no more – AllFacebook publishes a list of the most popular Facebook Fan Pages.  While it is easy to jump to conclusions from these numbers and congratulate the winners, there are a number of questions to be answered first. Were the fans added organically? Many big brands run Facebook ads to acquire fans – getting a ton of fans through ads is not as valuable as fans who seek you out to join. Are you driving value from your fans? Having a bunch of fans is great, but so what?  How are you engaging with your fans and continuing to drive value – for them, not you.  How do you provide value to your fans? popular facebook fan pages chart

Anyone else have thoughts on this list?

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