Writing Better Posts will Get Your Message Further in the Social Stream
The social marketing space is extremely crowded and loud. Twitter alone has approximately 500 MILLION tweets flying out PER DAY! (approximately 6 million every SECOND) Twitter is a stream flowing wild and full with interesting content and … not-so-interesting clutter. Your goal on your social media channels is to share interesting and helpful content that others find good enough that they pluck it out of the stream and pass it along through ReTweets and shares.
To help your social media messages stand out and be read more often, here are 5 things to keep in mind:
1. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind.
Being controversial isn’t a bad thing on social media channels… occasionally. Tell us how you feel about something, while still being civil. People want to chime in and agree with you… or disagree with you. If you are just quoting everyone else, it gets old. It’s like that old saying, “Be yourself…unless you’re a jerk, then be someone else!”
2. Become a better writer!
Punch a bit of drama, humor or even intrigue into your tweets and posts where you can. Can you say it in a way that is more entertaining or humorous? “Craving that last piece of cake” can be tweaked to read, “I kept hearing my name being called in a seductive voice. I turned to find the last piece of cake winking at me.” Just more fun to read and pass along! “Busy day ahead” can be made more interesting AND helpful by telling us a bit about you with, “Working with clients to tame their clutter today-I love scary closets” or “Busy day ahead expanding minds–this could get messy!” [READ: 7 Skills Every Social Media Marketer Needs]
3. Share it More Than Once.
We all know that once is never enough for anything great, so why not share your post more than once. Unless it is time-sensitive, put that post out today in the morning and then again perhaps tomorrow afternoon. Keep in mind that people are not sitting at their computer or on their phone JUST reading your posts (I know…shocking!). I’m sorry to burst that bubble, but people are reading lots of content and perhaps they missed your post today but will catch it tomorrow. Try adding two different images to your posts and see which captures the attention better. Speaking of images…
4. Add more photos and videos to your posts to allow people to SEE what you are saying.
Social media is all about photos, videos, and all things visual. Make sure and utilize this on your posts. While there are LOADS of great sites to find stock images [see: STOP USING THESE CRAPPY IMAGES ON YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA POSTS] you can also create your own with photos you snap, images you create with tools like Canva or other tools, or fun Gifs you find or create!
5. Be quiet sometimes.
On any social media platform, my philosophy (that even I do not follow at times) is BE HELPFUL, BE INTERESTING, or BE QUIET! If you post tweets when there is nothing interesting or helpful to say…you might start being ignored. Of course, we are talking about SOCIAL media, so there are times you are socializing and chatting it up with folks, but if you are just posting what you are doing without asking yourself “Can I make this more interesting or helpful?” you might want to just go for a walk.
YOUR TURN TO SHARE: Of all the posts you have shared in the past week, what was it that grabbed YOUR attention and inspired you to pass them along?
Here is our FREE resource to help you use Twitter to build your business — Download Now:
So you, like so many business owners, are about to pull your hair out just thinking about all the duplicate Facebook and Twitter accounts you have. Perhaps you have two personal profiles on Facebook, 3 different business pages, and a handful of Twitter accounts that you secured early on as your brand was launching. How did this happen? Many businesses rushed to create a Facebook Page or set up a Twitter account before they really knew what to do with them and now they can’t remember the passwords or even all the usernames they had secured.
You can’t just leave these duplicate or old accounts floating out there like satellite junk floating in space. You may think they aren’t doing any harm, but when consumers search for your brand, it can be confusing if they find several variations. Unlike sitting on multiple domain names to prevent anyone else from grabbing them, an unused social media account with a similar name is seen to the public and will have your consumers wondering which one they are supposed to connect with. It can dilute your brand’s power on social media sites. So what’s a person to do?
Here is how (and why) to convert a PERSONAL PROFILE on Facebook to a BUSINESS PAGE, as well as how to merge two or more Facebook BUSINESS PAGES or PLACE PAGES that may have even been created by consumers who couldn’t find you. Then we will tackle duplicate Twitter accounts, which are much easier to deal with.
CONVERTING A PERSONAL PROFILE ON FACEBOOK TO A BUSINESS PAGE
This one is tricky. Facebook wants you to maintain a personal profile to network and connect with other people. They also want you to maintain a personal profile to MANAGE a business page, but there are times when you and your brand are one and the same. Your name is the name of your business. Professional speakers, actors, musicians, sports figures, or other celebrities, might have a personal profile that maxes out at 5,000 connections and so they either allow followers (people can follow updates you post to PUBLIC without actually “FRIENDING” you. To enable this, go to your GENERAL SETTINGS and look for FOLLOWERS.) or create a business page to allow an unlimited number of fans to join in. Many people in this situation end up creating duplicate content for both sites and then miss messages left for them on one or both.
A bigger reason to convert your PERSONAL PROFILE to a BUSINESS PAGE is if you are conducting or promoting a business regularly from a personal profile. It is against Facebook’s Terms of Agreement to use a personal profile to conduct business or to represent a business. Sure it’s done all the time, but beware, Facebook can (and has) shut down a profile if they discovered it is being used by a business.
Before merging or converting accounts you must first ask yourself if you want to use Facebook for personal use. Do you want to connect with your close friends and family members on a different level than you do with your fans and followers? If you answer, NO, then merging (or converting) the two makes sense. If you answer, YES, you do want to use your personal profile, you can put friends and family into lists and find ways to differentiate your personal from your business pages with different images or clear messages to fans to connect on your business page, telling them why they don’t want to miss the content that is shared there.
If you want to convert your PERSONAL PROFILE and all its friends, family, and fans into a BUSINESS PAGE (fan page) you take one of these two routes:
If you do NOT have a current BUSINESS PAGE, follow these steps:
First, go into your SETTINGS and download a copy of all of your data. You will most likely lose your photos and posts that have been placed on your profile when it converts. You will receive an email with this data.
All of your FRIENDS from your PERSONAL ACCOUNT will become FANS of your page. If someone has already liked your PAGE, they will only be counted once.
Be sure to appoint a new GROUP ADMIN to any groups you may manage, since once your PERSONAL PROFILE is gone, the group will be assigned to someone that Facebook selects (usually the most active member, which may not be who you want in control of your group).
Now to begin the migration, start HERE at Facebook’s Migration page.
You will not be able to UNDO these two, so be sure to think through your plan before you do this.
MERGING TWO FACEBOOK BUSINESS PAGES
If you DO have a current BUSINESS PAGE that you want to merge with your PERSONAL PROFILE follow these steps:
First, go into your SETTINGS and download a copy of all of your data. You could lose your photos and posts that have been placed on your profile when it converts.
Be sure you are not the only admin on your BUSINESS PAGE. Add another person as a manager or admin before your personal profile (which was most likely the only admin on the page) goes away. This additional admin will be the person who can help you post content and manage your account if needed.
Go up and follow the steps listed above to first convert your PERSONAL PROFILE to a BUSINESS PAGE (giving you that additional page that you are going to then MERGE)
Now go to Facebooks MERGE page HERE to begin this process. Keep in mind Facebook will only allow two BUSINESS PAGES to MERGE if they have similar names and are essentially the same type of business. You will select the page you want to KEEP from the first drop-down menu and then you will select the page you want to MERGE it with from the second menu. If Facebook allows your pages to be put together, you will see the CONFIRM button.
You will not be able to UNMERGE these two pages, so be sure to think through your plan before you do this.
DELETING OR INACTIVATING UNUSED TWITTER ACCOUNTS
The hardest part about having multiple Twitter accounts is finding the login credentials for each one. This can be like untangling a ball of tiny chains found in the back of a jewelry box. Sometimes they slip right out and sometimes it is a long and tedious task.
Currently, Twitter has no way to MERGE duplicate or similar accounts into one. They cannot move followers or the people you are following from one account to another, so sadly, it is a matter of closing down unused accounts on Twitter and/or rebranding them.
You can easily change the username for your Twitter account and rebrand the images. As long as the name that you want is available, you can simply go into your settings and change the name.
If you cannot even log into your old accounts because you can’t remember the passwords, try clicking on the RESET PASSWORD and then try and remember the email that you used to set up the account. Twitter gives you a clue as to which email was used –> G***@S****************.com
MERGING YOUTUBE CHANNELS AND DOWNLOADING YOUR VIDEOS
This is another area that is a bigger task than you would think. At this time, YouTube cannot merge two accounts, moving videos from one account to another. You can re-upload your videos from one account to another if you still have the original video files, or you can download your videos from one account and then reupload them.
To download your own videos from YouTube (it is illegal to download someone else’s content without their permission), go to your channel and click on VIDEO MANAGER and select VIDEOS.
Find the Video you want to download and select the DROPDOWN ARROW next to the EDIT link.
Select Download MP4.
I hope this helps you save some of your hair from being pulled out! It can be frustrating and most of the time we are just mad at ourselves for creating so many accounts in the first place. So as you begin to tackle this, take a deep breath and remember, it’s SOCIAL MEDIA…it has to be easier than cleaning up space junk!
Let us know if we can be of assistance in any way. We have a team of experts in just about every area of marketing here at SocialKNX, waiting to help you make sense of your digital and content marketing efforts. You can call us, tweet us and even send telepathic messages–on a good day it can be quite fast–> Try it here!
Gina is the President at SocialKNX, a digital and content marketing firm with offices in Denver, Chicago, and San Antonio. She is an author and international keynote speaker on using today’s tools to reach your digitally savvy consumers. Connect with Gina on Twitter, or just about any social media site known to mankind!
She runs our DIY.social coaching program as well–learn more here: https://DIY.social
When you see a picture of this structure, most will know exactly where it is. Does your social media profile pic allow people to know exactly what you are about?
Sydney’s Opera House is one of the most recognizable structures in the world. Whether you like opera or not, when you see the building, you stop and marvel at the design and beauty. You wouldn’t click on this picture if you wanted information on Chinese cooking or if you were interested in connecting with train collectors. The photo gives you enough information to draw you in or cause you to move on. In the world of social media and social networking, your online persona is made up of your name (or nickname), your avatar (or social media profile pic) and then the content that you provide. You may not be recognizable to many in the beginning, but it doesn’t take long to create that recognizable online persona.
When I see certain pictures on Facebook or Twitter, I pay more attention to the information than when I see others. There are some that I see and skip right over knowing it is not information that I want or need. (I know, I should just disconnect or “unfriend” them, but that is for another post.)
When developing your online persona, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, is the photo that you choose to use. Selecting a great headshot or photo that really represents YOU is important. In my book, Gettin’ Geeky with Twitter, I spend an entire chapter talking about using a great headshot and standing out. I have some below that I feature in the book and I will explain why they stand out in my opinion. But do this simple test: Scan your list of friends on Facebook or look down the stream of Twitter followers, which pictures jump out and capture your attention? Which one’s get lost in the stream? Are there some that stop traffic and cause you to dive into their information?
A great social media profile pic or headshot is close up, it shows personality and it becomes YOU to all of US. I used to think that everyone should use a REAL photo of themselves and not their dog or a picture of their book cover, but I have found enough exceptions to this rule to now say, “it depends.” Who are you online? Do you provide information from a dog’s point of view? Then a dog-face works for you. Do you use an animated character because this is how you see yourself? Cool. As long as it is not a picture of someone else–like those who post a photo of a celebrity as if that were them, or there have been cases where someone posts a picture of someone more attractive because they don’t want the world to see who they really are. This is different than posting a cartoon image or caricature.
I feel that this becomes a form of deception. Too many people create fake accounts with someone else’s face, name or both so they can write nasty comments or lead people into false relationships. I guess this is done in face-to-face relationships as well, but it is wrong in either case (in my humble opinion!) I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on this. Depending on why you are online and engaging in social networking, it is usually important to build authentic relationships even when they are shot-term acquaintances. A friendly or engaging avatar/photo is very helpful.
Here are some of my favorite Twitter profile pics–and the reasons I think they stop traffic:
Viveka von Rosen or @LinkedInExpert
Peg Fitzpatrick or @PegFitzpatrick
Both Viveka and Peg have had great close up shots of their smiling faces. Just looking at their profile pics, you would get the feeling that they are friendly and helpful. After reading the content they provide on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and everywhere else, I know that when I see their face pop up it is worth stopping to read their post.
Here’s an example of a brand mascot being so recognizable he stops eye traffic. Moz is a brand that provides SEO tools and news that is always a favorite to read.
Lil Pecan or @LilPecan
Lil Pecan is one of my favorite Twitter Critters. First she is hilarious, she makes delicious chocolates (well, she has never actually sent me any, but they sound delicious by her descriptions), she has a great blog and she is always in character. The only irreverent social media guinea pig that sings scat that I know of. Lil Pecan is a great example of someone who connects with people through her character and it just works!
You be your own judge. What calls to you? In our overly crowded information highway, you need to be sure you have a face that stops traffic and then you’d better have some good content for them to read while they’re there! Let us know who stops traffic for you.
Now that you’ve got tips for your profile pic…let’s get that bio in shape!
Have you heard, “Twitter is dead”? Have you asked yourself if Twitter is a social media channel you should really be investing time in? There are many tools to use in your marketing and Twitter definitely has a place IF…you share content from a blog, or vlog, if you want to drive more traffic to your website, or if you want to connect with people globally or locally that you may not otherwise be able to do.
So YES, using Twitter in your marketing mix is time well spent.
Here are 7 reasons why Twitter should be a part of your social media marketing strategy:
1. The Sheer Number of Twitter Users
In 60 seconds, Twitter users share 500,000 tweets, There are 319 million monthly users on Twitter. A surprising 43% of those don’t send tweets themselves, but watch or read others’ tweets. We’re looking at a concentrated area of people, who you are able to segregate by industry and keywords.
2. Brevity is King
There is no getting around it: short and sweet wins the game on Twitter (and everywhere else these days). You have 140 characters to get your point across. No talking someone’s ear off with lengthy copy. The more you tweet, the better you become at whittling down your message while retaining its meaning. After all, don’t you appreciate when someone is on point and takes up less of your precious time?
One Twitter user who is an ace at getting his point across succinctly is Brian Fanzo. His motto is ‘Talk Fast, Tweet Faster’. He does both well and adds tremendous value to those following him.
3. The Use of Hashtags to Find and Be Found
What a wonderful component of this channel! Use industry keywords (e.g. #SocialMedia, #smm (social media marketing), #TravelTips, #productivity) in your tweets to help others find you and your content. Many people want to curate content around a certain topic and when they click on a hashtag or search for one, Twitter serves up all content that contains that hashtag.
Tip: Search first if you’re unsure about a specific hashtag and make sure it’s relevant in your industry. If no one’s using it, you’re less likely to get the big bang out of it. Use hashtags that are relevant and popular in your industry.
Another tip: Look at the trending column from your home page and see if there are any topics you can tie in with your brand’s message – capitalize on what’s already working! (Caution, do not hijack a trending hashtag just for the sake of jumping in, if it has nothing to do with your brand. Many have become Twitter case studies of what NOT TO DO while attempting this.)
4. The Use of Tweet Chats to Connect with Like-Minded People
One of my favorite uses for Twitter is attending tweet chats. Think of them as meet-ups you can be a part of without actually having to drive somewhere to attend. I have met so many wonderful people in a Tweetchat (or Twitter chat as some call them) who have helped sharpen my skills by sharing their knowledge.
Typically a moderator will ask a short series of questions, and people in the chat answer them by number. You always have the option to just lurk, read, and not respond. However, your answer may help someone. I encourage you to join the party!
Tip: Use a free tool like TWEETCHAT.com to filter out all other tweets during the chat. You can follow along easily and it adds the hashtag you are following to all posts you send out during the chat. Two of my favorite weekly chats are #CMGRCHAT (Wednesdays at noon MT) and #BRANDCHAT (Thursdays at 9am MT).
5. Twitter Lists Help You Filter
As many professional organizers will tell you, everything in your home and office should have a place. Twitter is no different. Organize your digital stream by using lists. You may be following 1,000 people but you have a handful of people you really want to keep an eye on. By adding them to a list, you can be sure you don’t miss their tweets. You may want a list for co-workers, one for favorite business leaders, or news sources. You can even create lists that stay private so you can create a client list or add your competition to a list and see what they are doing on Twitter.
When you want to read posts just from the people on your lists, you simply go to your profile page and click on your lists to filter out all the other noise. You can also use a tool like Hootsuite to pull these lists into columns on your social monitoring dashboard for even more convenience.
Lists are also a great way to find new people to follow. You can look at an industry expert’s lists they’ve created or are a part of, and find a helpful trail of similar people to connect with. You can subscribe to the list itself or choose to follow specific members.
6. Proactive Community Growth
You truly are limitless (when in compliance with the 2000 rule) with your growth potential of your Twitter community. As you are starting out, follow 10-20 interesting people a day. They don’t all have to be in your industry. Follow people or brands related to an interest you have or because they offer great content.
Tip: People/brands should be active on Twitter to be considered interesting! Check to see the last time they posted a tweet before following them. You don’t need any duds.
Add them to a created list or simply read through some of their tweets and like, comment or retweet (or share) their content. This will help you get on their radar and hopefully get a “follow back.” Twitter is one of the tools that allows you to find and follow people without needing their permission to connect (for the most part–there are some who get on Twitter and make their accounts private, but very few).
7. The Ability to Tag Accounts and People
A great Twitter feature is the ability to mention (@mention) others both in the post itself and in tagging photos. If I am reading a book or attending an event and want to mention the speaker or author, I simply add their Twitter handle in the post @PersonsName and they get a notification that they were mentioned or tagged. This helps you jump into a conversation with someone you may not have had the chance to do so before!
Use tagging as a way to engage with others. You’ll get so much more out of Twitter by “talking” with others as opposed to just lurking.
Are you using Twitter in your marketing mix? What are your reasons for doing so? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
Twitter is a go-to social network for many companies, as the 140-character message limit provides a great platform for short, sweet, and direct communication. You don’t have the space for extensive messages, which means embracing succinctness is an essential part of your Twitter marketing experience. Over time, you build up a following and populate your feed with plenty of relevant accounts as well. Now that you have a strong Twitter foundation, how do you engage with your audience to keep them interested?
Twitter is a popular customer support channel for many companies. As one of the largest social media sites, consumers expect the businesses they patronize to be a part of the community. When they have problems with a product or service, they aren’t going to turn to phone or live chat for their first support outreach. They talk on Twitter about their experience. If you catch the consumer early on in their social media rant, you can address their problem before it becomes a major PR issue. In many cases, turning an angry customer into a satisfied customer creates a significant amount of brand loyalty for your business. Over time, your biggest adversaries turn into your biggest advocates. You can’t buy marketing like that, and all it takes is staying on top of your Twitter account. If you have social media managers handling the account at specific times, make it clear when customers may get a response. A customer waiting a few hours for a response is less upset if he knows when to expect a response.
Behind the Scenes
Want to show your customers some of your company’s personality? Use Twitter for short slice of life looks at your business, from pictures to overheard quotes. You separate yourself from the companies that stick strictly to business, which is especially valuable if you want to establish yourself as a trendy company that’s relatable to your audience. Make sure to ride the line between approachable and unprofessional, however. The informal nature of Twitter makes it easy to slip into a too familiar approach with customers.
Social listening tools are your best friend when it comes to driving Twitter engagement. Not everyone knows about your brand’s account on Twitter. Instead of engaging with you directly, they use related keywords and hashtags, or don’t tag you in their messages. Social listening tools scan Twitter and other social networks to see who’s talking about you. You can jump in on the conversation and add your input or provide help for an upset customer. Some of our favorite listening tools include SproutSocial (our main dashboard as well), Mention, and Hootsuite.
Building Connections with Influencers
Go beyond your own followers and look for your industry’s influencers. Track what they post on Twitter, when, and the kind of response it gets. You want to form connections with these influencers, making yourself and your brand known to them. They may tweet about your company or contact you directly for other opportunities. Never underestimate the possibility of securing native advertising with influencers either, as this is a growing field.
Own Your Hashtags
Establish unique hashtags for your business and make sure you keep up on them. You don’t want so many hashtags that don’t make sense for your company, especially if you have a hard time tracking multiple hashtags. Keep the conversation in your brand name or relevant events, and look for trending hashtags you may provide valuable input on. You don’t want to take advantage of tragedies or disasters by jumping in and trying to be clever, but many other trending Twitter hashtags give you reach to a wide audience.
Leverage Live Event Marketing
Live event marketing gets plenty of popularity, especially with B2B companies. You don’t just get the benefit of the event for in-person attendees. You can also utilize this event for social media marketing. Sit your social media managers down in live sessions and presentations and have them live tweet with the event hashtag. You can also use event-specific hashtags to help attendees connect with each other for networking and after-event entertainment. You might not have the resources to live-tweet everything yourself, but promoting the hashtag helps encourage attendees to do so as well.
Social media marketing is more than posting a few articles here and there on your Twitter account. You need to actively engage with your audience to keep growing, making the best use of those 140 characters possible.
It has just been announced that Twitter will lift the 140-character limit on direct (or private) messages! If you are feeling rather verbose, you can now tweet 10,000 characters in a direct message to someone. (It doesn’t mean they will read more than 140 of those characters though) Now this can be great news for brands who handle a lot of customer service issues via Twitter, or any of us wanting to take a conversation and go deeper than 140 characters will allow. This can be bad news for all of us who are already sick of spam messages that are under 140 characters.
Facebook is allowing your friends to not only message you privately but now they can click on “VIDEO CALL” and ring your computer. Perhaps social media sites are trying to tell us something. Is brevity no longer king? I doubt it.
There is no word on the street that Twitter will lift or expand the character limit on all tweets just yet, but it does seem that it’s about time. After all the original purpose for the 140-character limit had to do with those same limits on SMS text messages (anything over 140 characters converts to MMS message). So perhaps we will follow Facebook and Instagram and allow us all to be a bit more chatty soon, but the more I think about that, the more I think they might want to keep those birds in the cage!
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. How can you see using the expanded messaging for direct messages?