A Powerful Social Media Listening Strategy

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Want to make make your marketing sing? Check out these social listening tools.

We have all heard that in order to be the most effective in our social marketing that we must engage in our communities. Sounds simple, but of course there is more to than that. While engagement does mean participation we must evaluate first of all if we are participating in the right communities and if our communications are appropriate for that audience. In order to evaluate we must study the different social media platforms to discover what best suits our purposes. As we familiarize ourselves with the platforms we can discover who the influencers are by the number of followers, shares and likes on a given profile; it will also become apparent what the best form of communication is and what topics appeal to the community.

But now is where the complexity can set in. What if the number of followers and the like are not the real indicator, then what? Siobhan Donovan suggests not taking much stock in these metrics as they don’t go deep enough.1  Siobhan explains that even when followers exhibit a high level of engagement through likes and followers etc., this still does not get to the heart of an accurate level of influence.2  Siobhan recommends a tool such as the Upfluence search engine that uses “relevancy and an influence score.”3  The relevancy score is measured by a broader range of criteria that include “engagement rates, community size, language, location, platform type, how often they post, etc.”The influence score determines the rank of the influencers based on the criteria as mentioned above and also pulls in number of monthly visitors for blogs. The Upfluence search engine will provide much depth that otherwise will be difficult to discern simply by listening. 

There are many other tools available for many social media measurement metrics. SmartInsights, Hootsuite, Hubspot are just a few of the social media management platforms offering various tracking tools. Hootesuite advertises monitoring filters to “find and filter social conversations by keyword, hashtag, and location—in multiple languages—to hear what people are saying about your brand, competitors, and industry.”6 SmartInsights and Hubspot offer similar tools for social media targeted listening.

Now that you have employed listening tools and developed an in depth understanding of the various social media platforms and discovered some key influencers, you are ready to dive into your own social media marketing strategy implementation. Your deep understanding of the audience will facilitate your engagement and relevant content that you will be able to share with the community.

What have been your social media and marketing breakthroughs that have really counted?

Are you looking to upgrade your social media strategy? Check out my latest blog: http://bit.ly/2Vi09D9

Need a marketing boost? Find current social media tips here: http://bit.ly/2Vi09D9

(nd). Follow key conversations with these monitoring features. Retrieved from https://hootsuite.com/platform/monitoring#

Donovan, S., (2018, Feb. 6). How Do You Measure Influence? A Simple Hack for Determining Value. Retrieved from  https://www.upfluence.com/influencer-marketing/how-do-you-measure-influence

photo, shutterstock.

Creating a Social Media Strategy to complement a Marketing Strategy

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In our small packaging company, our marketing strategy up until the mid 2000’s was legs on the road, that is face to face sales calls, attending a few conferences and trade shows a year and an occasional print ad, these usually centered around trade show time. With a limited budget there was never much room to expand beyond those activities in a marketing sense. No monthly or quarterly ad campaigns or half page color ads, just a small advertisement and a press release once or twice a year.

Some History

In the late 90’s the internet and Google came into being1 and eventually social media opened a whole new world for the marketer and everyone else. We didn’t know what to do with the new tools and muddled along. We set up a website cmp.celplast.com. That is not a typo, it took us awhile to update to http://www.celplast.com. So, you see our starting point. Very primitive.

Christine Mooreman and her colleagues offer tips to incorporating a social media strategy into a marketing strategy. I have been following some of these tips and mean to implement others once I can find the time. Below I offer my comments on their recommendations.

Choose Appropriate Tools

Be sure to use tools that match the marketing strategy.2 We have found our blog to fill that requirement for us. This is a tool that can be used to compliment the message of any marketing efforts and most of all the voice of the sales rep. First by listening to the industry challenges, relevant content is created in response. Present day, the challenge is how to manage waste the industry creates. There is a lot of activity happening in this arena and so this is a great topic to share digestible information and developments and start a dialogue. Blog reach has been expanded by use of email blasts to an approved subscriber list.

See the Big Picture

Now that the content and social media presence is out there, know how to move the customer into and through the sales funnel.3 This might be in the form of additional content educational and solution based and should also involve the use of additional platforms.

Match the Platform to the Strategy4

In our case we have used our blog and email blasts to reach our target audience but we know that our audience reaches beyond website visits and email subscribers. We have looked to LinkedIn as a platform with a professional presence and Facebook with its global reach as a means to expand our reach. We should go beyond these mediums but with limited time we will manage what we have started with before delving into something new.

Create Social Media Toolkits5

This might be obvious but at the same time easily overlooked. Provide media with templates for use on the various platforms so that posts related to your company will all have the same look and promote the same brand image.

Use Resources Wisely6

With our limited knowledge base we have captured this advice. It is important to capitalize on social media experts; place them in appropriate contact with customers as well as on the marketing team in some capacity, where their skills and fresh outlook will have a positive impact.

Balance in-house work with outside expertise7

I have struggled with this one as I feel that I don’t have the expertise to carry out various marketing activities, but I want to learn. This was a relief to realize that it is okay to outsource but just be sure that enough remains in-house so that the voice and image that you want to project is not lost. An outside source will never know your company well enough to get those two items as accurate as the in-house team can.

Measure and Evaluate

With the myriad of tools available it is possible to measure the ROI of your social media marketing activities. It is important to do this work to know where your success is and to validate new work that you will want to do.

Experiment8

At some point we need to branch out from where we are and learn new tools and explore different formats. This will have some risk to it, but to push us beyond where we are now can only ultimately result in reward. We will look back someday and call it failing forward.

Today I can say that we are much more savvy to what we should be doing, though of course it takes time and it much easier to make a strategy versus carry it out. But at least we have an understanding and can take action where the greatest return is.

What have been your social media and marketing breakthroughs that have really counted?

Need help understanding how to fit a social media strategy into your marketing strategy? Check out my latest blog:  http://bit.ly/2HyHICc

Marketing or Social Media Strategy. Where does one end and the other begin? http://bit.ly/2HyHICc

1 (n.d.). The History of the Internet in a Nutshell. Retrieved from     https://www.webfx.com/blog/web-design/the-history-of-the-internet-in-a- nutshell/

2-8 Moorman, C., Ross, B., Gorman, S. (2014, Dec. 16). 12 Tips For Integrating Social Media Into   Your Marketing Strategy. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/christinemoorman/2014/12/16/12-tips-for- integrating-social-media-into-your-marketing-strategy/#577ca03ae53f

Personal Branding in the Digital Age

Personal Branding in the Digital Age

Personal branding as it pertains to the digital world is a concept that has taken hold more recently as the digital realm has entered every aspect of our daily life and information on anything and everything is at our fingertips. As we rely so much on operating in a digital world it is important to create and curate your personal brand. This is the window to how we are perceived in the world so we had better be the owner and not the bystander to what is available for all to see.

Take Care of Your Personal Brand

Google my name and you will find a whole host of information concerning me. I am, but should not be surprised by this. First to pop up on a search is the company in which I work along with my title. This is followed by a Canada 411 listing of my address and phone number. Already, a lot of conclusions can be drawn from this information but drill down and you can find a blog that I have posted. My Pinterest image shows a picture of me holding a fish. I do not have too many pins, the main section posted is under the title of food and wine. LinkedIn will provide my educational background and Medium helpfully has recorded highlights and stories that I have “clapped” for. The list goes on, but from what is listed here one could arrive at a fairly detailed description of who I am and what brand I am trying to portray. The trouble is as I peruse these search results, I see much that I want to change and update and some things I would like to delete. While I may be able to change and update some content, I do realize that deleting is probably not possible. Thankfully I am a Gen xer and being late to the game, haven’t done too much online, but it would have been nice to have been more savvy from the outset.

How to Manage Your Online Image

Flying V Group in the article 9 Reasons Personal Branding Matters in this Digital Age [Infographic] tells us that it takes 1/10 of a second for an impression to be formed online.1 That sums up right there why we need to be careful of what we sign up for and what we post. All the time.

There is much benefit to be realized by managing and creating your online image to grow your career or promote your views and objectives. Joshua Waldman’s Career Enlightenment site shares this helpful post of 7 Tips for Creating & Managing Your Personal Brand, tips that everyone should be aware of before beginning an online journey. Some are thought provoking such as to know what differentiates you from the rest and another advises understanding first what personal brand you are wanting to create.2 This is where I wish I had spent some time being aware of what online image I want out there for everyone to see. I am sure that I can make some changes and improve the available content but better to do this up front rather than after the fact. This will definitely be a topic to discuss with my daughter when the time comes. Other suggestions offered are more intuitive, like know that “all publicity is not good publicity” and practice what you preach.3

Take your Personal Brand to the Next Level

Further advice that Career Enlightenment shares centers around augmenting your personal brand by networking and attending events that support your brand.4 If I wish to present a brand of sustainability, then I would be wise to network with like-minded people and to post related content. My personal brand should blend with what I share and present online. Currently, with what is readily available online, you can easily conclude that I fish and like wine. While this may be true, that is not what I want to share, at least not as an initial impression.

Lastly, concerning my online personal brand, some information is outdated which also sends a certain impression. Our online personal brand should be updated on a regular basis,5 and my online persona needs immediate attention to fill in what is missing from the last two to three years. I want my audience to recognize me as a pertinent and current resource and my online brand should communicate that.

Though online personal branding may be a fairly new concept, it is here to stay and be used by all. We must take heed of how we present ourselves and definitely be careful of what we post online. Many times we don’t have control of this, as friends will post pictures or other content that includes us. The world has changed in this regard, in always needing to be aware of the image you present; an unsavory moment can come back to haunt you, long after you have forgotten the event.

  1. 9 Reasons Personal Branding Matters in this Digital Age; https://www.flyingvgroup.com/blog/2019/05/29/9-reasons-personal-branding-matters-in-this-digital-age/
  2. – 5. 7 Tips for Creating & Managing Your Personal Brand; https://careerenlightenment.com/7-tips-creating-managing-personal-brand
www.https://www.facebook.com/npanny/personalbranding&whyyoushouldcare
https://twitter.com/njpana/whatisyourpersonalbrand?

Are Social Media Apps suitable for the under 13 crowd?

Are Social Media Apps suitable for the under 13 crowd?

My 8-year-old is in love with her itouch. That is to say that any allotted time is consumed in full. As well, she will read to accrue additional time (the brainchild of my husband). Of course, it is the games and activities that are the allure. She has been allowed to use Snapchat and plays Roblox but are those really safe aps for an 8 year-old to use?

Commonsense Media offers some insight into social media protocol to keep youngsters safe.

  • Don’t share your username.
  • Don’t share any personal information.
  • Don’t talk with strangers.
  • Use devices in a common room rather than a bedroom where unobtrusive monitoring can take place.

Additionally, parents should know who their children are in contact with and establish guidelines for use with built in consequences should the guidelines not be followed.

There are definitely apps that are geared toward more mature users and kids should not be permitted to use those apps. However using apps that their friends use, gives kids a common community to unite in and following the above protocols will ensure a safe environment.

If you are not convinced that this is an appropriate approach to social media but are inclined in this day and age to have your child comfortable with the use of social media, Kerry O’Shea Gorgone offers some suggestions for kid-specific social media messaging and social network apps. These are geared toward younger kids with fun stickers and animations available and most importantly with their safety in mind.

While Snapchat and Roblox are a lot of fun and seem to be the tried and true go-to apps of the kids in our neighbourhood; there are other apps available. While lesser known, they are equally entertaining all while catering to the needs and safety of a younger age group.

The Five Best Social Media Apps for Kids, https://businessesgrow.com/2017/12/13/social-media-apps-for-kids/

Kid reviews for Snapchat, https://www.commonsensemedia.org/app-reviews/snapchat/user-reviews/child