Halloween is coming and aside from it just being a holiday to get us all to buy giant bags of our favorite candy and pretend we are going to give it all away to the trick-or-treaters, it is time to “celebrate” all things CREEPY. When you are new to social media marketing for your business, it can be as daunting and scary as stepping up to one of the scary haunted houses. But like even the scariest of haunted houses, once you turn the lights on, you see how things work and the creepy factor goes away…a little bit. So why don't we turn the lights on and explore some of these “scarier” social media tools that can help you with your social media marketing…as you eat another tiny box of Milk Duds. Learning social media practices as well as engaging in the sites can produce terror, especially the fear of your time being sucked into the ground with zombies. But they aren’t as frightful as you might think.
Facebook is Not Frankenstein
“He’s Alive!” Dr. Frankenstein cried as his monster moved after lightning brought him to life. Facebook is definitely alive and well and more popular than ever. Heck, even the young people are said to be sneaking back on. But it doesn’t have to be scary. The sight has over 1.5 BILLION users and 750 million active users who on average, share more than 30 billion pieces of content per month. If that many people engage in Facebook, it can’t be that terrifying. And getting used to Facebook just takes a little practice and consistency (like going house to house begging those poor adults for candy). Articles like “How to Use Facebook” can easily be googled and walk you through the process, and if you are needing to set up a Business Page on Facebook, we created a guidebook that walks you through that entire process. (Download: Getting Started with Facebook Business Pages) Once you are a part of the community, pretend you are having a dinner and invite a few friends into your living room. Just a few. Soon you will invite more and your fears will be alleviated. So put down the torches, villagers, and give it a try.
Twitter will not suck you dry like Dracula
Twitter was launched in 2006 and tweets have been flying through the digital air ever since. Folks may find Twitter scary because of the sheer number of tweets that are sent every single day (500 million tweets per day are sent out), but it is a communication tool that can benefit you professionally, even if you are not a constant user. Like Dracula, Twitter has sunk its teeth into our society with its influence in how we communicate as well as what we use to communicate. Hashtags are “IN” and the pound sign is out (we're still not sure how and when that happened). But unlike Dracula, Twitter does not have to suck the life out of you. In “Ten Questions you were too Scared to ask about Twitter” Chris Robley takes the fear away by explaining how to use Twitter step by step. No need to carry a wooden steak when you sign up. Twitter can be advantageous and fun.
Pinterest is not a scary ghost, but more like Casper.
Imagine a haunted house you’ve been dared to enter. You are told ghosts are living there so you are naturally frightened to cross the threshold. But you’ve also been told that inside that house, a wealth of creative ideas are awaiting your perusal. Do you go? Pinterest is a great place to visit. People may fear they will get lost and not know what’s real because of the litany of craft ideas, creative quotes and scrumptious recipes. But be warned…it is somewhat of a Hotel California. You can logon anytime you'd like….but you can never leave! It is a friendly and beautiful place filled with amazing photos and lots of shiny objects. For businesses, there are wonderful opportunities to sell your products with the new “Buyable Pins” on Pinterest.
You can pin ideas or pictures to your own boards to keep suggestions fresh. And although, Pinterest is known for crafts and party ideas, your business can benefit from it also. Tech boards are a plenty and provide learning tools for your company. And of course, the fear of the unknown can be taken away by reading articles like “How to Use Pinterest for Beginners.” Jump on there this week and you will sure to be delighted by all the treats and fun Halloween items to buy or just “Pin.”
Streaming Video will NOT turn you into a zombie.
Now the thought of being on video can certainly send chills down the bravest spine, it doesn't have to be as scary as you make it out to be in your mind. First, realize that people actually see you every day already. They hear your voice and see your face, so get past the frightful thought of not liking how you look on HD video (alright….that IS a frightful thought for any of us over 45) or how you sound on audio. It's what you look like and sound like, so realize that boat has sailed already and turn on the video camera.
Secondly, streaming video is as hot as a witch's caldron! Trust me, it's H-O-T, HOT! From Periscope and Meerkat (which we are betting will soon be buried in the graveyard soon, along with Google+ and Ello) to the new sweetheart tool, BLAB. The trend is in producing your own show and streaming it live to your social media audience. Blab is our favorite since it feels more like a call-in radio show, allowing listeners (or viewers in this case) to jump in and ask questions or interact via chat in the sidebar. It's not as crazy to keep up with as a TweetChat, and it is more than just you being a talking head. To take the scariness away, trying joining in one as a participant, or viewer, then as your courage builds, you can jump in one of the “hot seats” to ask a question of make a comment, then before you know it, you will have your own army of Blabbers slaying zombies out there. We do a weekly Blab, focused on savvy business people doing cool things in their marketing.
So this Halloween, get your gigantic 7-pound bag of candy, and get comfy on the couch with your computer. Delve into the world of social media and conquer those fears. There’s no secret “trick” to learning and it will be a “treat” in the end.