How to Get The Most From Facebook or Linkedin Groups

How to Get The Most From Facebook or Linkedin Groups

“Helping others is the way we help ourselves” – Oprah Winfrey When a new Business Park opened in Cambridge, the managing company of the site decided to host a “Meet the Neighbour” networking event, allowing residents of the park to see who is based around them and what they do. Come the evening of the event, it seemed like ¾ of attendees were based anywhere but the Business Park and were looking to meet residents in the hope of signing them up as customers. Now take a Facebook Group such as Freelance Heroes (obviously!) and you’ll be amazed how many people try to join it in the hope of signing up any of the 2000+ members as customers. Needless to say, those people aren’t allowed in. If you’re joining a Facebook Group, LinkedIn Group or forum, related to an industry type, geographical location, or other topic, follow these steps to get the most out of it. Read the Rules In each group there will most likely be a description from the person who set it up, detailing who the group is for and the nature of behaviour in the group. This will help you to integrate with existing members most effectively and show that you’re there for the same reasons as them. What if there’s no description? I’ll come back to that. * Learn From Existing Posts But reading what has been allowed in, and their respective comments, you’ll be able to see first-hand what works best in the group, ensuring your posts and comments compliment what’s there. Comment before Posting It’s not your job to tell other people...
How To Get More Life From One Blog Post

How To Get More Life From One Blog Post

“Creativity is making marvellous out of the discarded” – Unknown Creating content is one of the constant challenges for many businesses looking to implement their social media strategy.  And while sourcing fresh content is the right thing to do, it’s often worth looking back and seeing how previous blogs can be repurposed, both to continue to engage with the same message as well as reaching a new audience in a more social media savvy way. Let me show you an example. Here’s a post I wrote (relevant to this one too, I should add) “The Best Sources for Your Blog Writing Inspiration”. The reason for sharing this is so I can show you how to get the most out of this post. Here are some ideas: Create an audio version (Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, a podcast). * There is an audience who like to learn while walking the dog, driving the car, etc. Recording an audible version of your post will get your message/thoughts out to them too. Create a video version * Using your webcam and a half-decent mic, you can talk your thoughts into a camera. Google loves video, as do some of your audience. Take a quote from your article and create an image from it. e.g. from my article above, I could use this:   Using these simple ideas, 3 blogs will give you of at least 12 pieces of content. And you can share old content again, so these can be used more than once. There’s more too (although these ideas require a little more effort): Use the basis of a blog to...
The Do’s and Don’ts of Using Hashtags

The Do’s and Don’ts of Using Hashtags

Friends don’t let friends #use #too #many #hashtags During my social media training courses and consultancies, I’m almost always asked the questions “what is a hashtag?” and “when should I use one?”, and the concept of hashtags is probably one of the more challenging lessons of anyone new user to twitter or instagram.  As succinctly as I can, here are the answers to those questions: What is a hashtag? Wikipedia says “A hashtag is a type of label or metadata tag used on social network and microblogging services which makes it easier for users to find messages with a specific theme or content.” It’s a specific conversation topic. For example #MWL17 (Marketing Week Live), #BBCQT (BBC Question Time), #FACup, #UKBusinessLunch, etc. It’s a chance to offer a view on a particular topic and to be part of a conversation. What is it not? This (taken from an actual tweet)…  When should I use one? Before you add a hashtag to your social media posts, use the search tools to understand how it’s currently being used. Ask youself why you are using it? If it’s only because you want your tweet to be seen by more people, then is it worth it? One article I read on Buffer said “Tweets with one or more hashtag are 55 percent more likely to be retweeted.” However, when a tweet contains more than two hashtags, engagement actually drops by an average of 17%. Read that again: “actually drops“. Also, search in twitter and instagram to understand who else is using the hashtag. For example,  I’ve just seen a tweet that said “15 Top...
The Best Sources For Your Blog Writing Inspiration

The Best Sources For Your Blog Writing Inspiration

“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing” – Benjamin Franklin.  Let’s kick this off by saying that this isn’t a post to convince you that you need to write a blog. If you Google “does my business need a blog?” there are over 280 million pages to cover that topic, while remembering that many businesses have grown successfully without one. I will post a few stats though: Content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing and generates about 3 times as many leads. (Source: DemandMetric) 69% of marketers say content is superior to direct mail and PR. (Source: Custom Content Council) The most common content marketing delivery mechanism is social media, used by 87% of marketers. (Source: CMI) The one thing that I will say for blogs at this point, is that they’re valuable content to help your social media goals as well as having SEO benefits. Back to this post though, which is designed to offer some suggestions about where your content ideas could come from. So, in no particular order, here goes: Inbound Customer Contact – What questions are your customers and prospects asking of you – through forms, phones calls, emails, tweets, etc? What do they want to know that could form the content of a blog post? Competitors – What are your competitors talking about and what angle could you write from, that is relevant to your audience? Social Media Search – Search for your keywords on twitter, Linkedin, etc. that could tell you what your target audience are talking about and asking of each other. Forums & Groups – For example,...
Dealing With Your Social Media Mistakes

Dealing With Your Social Media Mistakes

“I was born to make mistakes not to fake perfection.” – Drake I recently wrote a blog, “How to Deal With the Bad and Ugly Comments on Social Media”, which looked at how to deal with the any negative comments that you may receive on your social media pages. But what if you’re the one making the faux pas? How do you come back from that? In this instance, I’m not talking about grammatical errors or using too many hashtags. That’s for another post. Firstly, remember that you’re only human. Most of the mistakes I come across are extremely small and stem from having the confidence to try stuff out.  In many cases, mistakes can humanise our businesses, which add to the story and personality that we’re trying to convey. Waitrose One of my favourite examples, included in  – which also highlights that these things happen to big brands as well as small ones – comes from the supermarket chain, Waitrose. In September 2012, they invited their twitter followers to finish this sentence “I shop at Waitrose because…” The idea of the exercise was to encourage customers to praise their shops, e.g. their service or range of products. What they received was largely anything but that and the tweets that followed included: “I shop at Waitrose because Clarrisa’s pony just WILL NOT eat ASDA Value straw.” “I shop at Waitrose because I don’t like being surrounded by poor people.” “I shop at Waitrose because the toilet paper is made from 24ct gold thread. (Unless it’s the Essentials range)” “I shop at Waitrose because I want to prove to Jeremy Kyle...
How to Deal With the Bad and Ugly Comments on Social Media

How to Deal With the Bad and Ugly Comments on Social Media

“Disaster gave me two things: a moment to react and a decision to overcome” – Michael Dooley, NYTimes Bestselling Author and Entrepreneur. I read an article this week from Inc.com contributor Jessica Stillman, entitled “How to Bounce Back from a Social Media Disaster”. It reminded me of an increasing number of stories of epic social media fails that happen from people who forget they’re on a global network, or from people who should just steer clear of social media. The particular one that stands out, which I included in my book and still use on training courses today, comes from the beautiful city of Bath, in the West of England. The story goes like this… In February 2014, a woman visited a deli in Bath for a cake and coffee. After her visit, she left the following feedback on the deli’s Facebook page: “The cakes looked amazing and I wanted to try every single one BUT the cakes were on very open display with every customer essentially leaning over them to order.” She added “”So, all the cakes were getting breathed on (or worse) by every single passing person, plus the staff. Which is a crying shame as they really did look extremely good. But due to the above, we just had coffee.” The sensible response from the deli would have been to accept the feedback as it was intended, i.e. constructive and good natured, and respond with words such as “Thank you for your feedback which we’ve taken on board and have now bought covers for the cakes. We hope you come back and try them soon.” However,...