Up Periscope

Growing Your Facebook and Twitter Audience

Social Sonar - Monday, December 17, 2012

Growing a fan base on Facebook is less of a "Build it, and they will come." philosophy and more of a "Respectfully join the conversation." situation. Increasing your audience requires a lot of help, since fan page permissions are very limited. You can't necessarily send messages to a new user or even see their friends. So how do you find new people? Rely on your current fan base.

Friends shoppingSharing is Caring.

Your number one goal is to get people to interact with your posts. Every time someone likes, shares, or comments on a post on your Facebook page, their friends are likely to see it in their feeds. Hopefully a friend will want to learn more and follow the link to investigate your page. If you have a lot of great content on your page, they'll "like" it too.

If you're a dentist and your Facebook page is full of pictures of severe gingivitis, people are probably not going to "like" it. But if you have fun images, inspirational quotes, and cute messages from the staff, a referred visitor is more likely to "like" your page.

Spread the Word.

People won't know you have a Facebook page if you don't tell them.

  • Add Facebook and Twitter icons to your website in a prominent place, usually the top right.
  • Print your Facebook and Twitter links on business cards, invoices, flyers, ads, and add them email signatures.
  • Post a decal or flyer in your window and on your counter.
  • Add the links on your packaging and freebies printed with your business information.

Convert Customers to Evangelists.

Your current customers are your best chance at getting new customers. As they are paying, ask if they have signed up for your Facebook or Twitter pages. Let them know the latest and greatest information about your business, as well as exclusive discounts, are available online.

Tweet It Out.

Your Twitter audience is much easier to grow than your Facebook fans. You can use software like TweetAdder to look for people who fit your customer / client demographic. Search local Twitter profiles and past tweets for keywords that indicate an interest in your services or products. Then follow those people. If they don't follow you back after a few days, unfollow them and move on.

Twitter only allows you to follow people at a certain ratio. If you have followed too many people who have not followed you back, Twitter will not allow you to follow any more until you unfollow some. Be careful not to follow or unfollow too many people at once, or Twitter will suspend your account for spam activities. This is why we recommend using a program to find new followers.

The content you post on your Facebook and Twitter pages should be different. Every so often, remind people you have more information on Facebook, and share a link to your page. This should help pull over more interested people on your Facebook page, where fans are harder to find.

If this all sounds daunting or confusing, you're not alone. Feel free to call or email us with any questions you have about social media.

Ménage à Trois: A Marketing Love Story

Social Sonar - Monday, October 08, 2012

Ménage à Trois translates to "Household of three". Here at Social Sonar, we often talk about the Virtuous Cycle, the three services that complement and feed each other seamlessly to create a cohesive marketing program and serve as the basis for all other efforts. Combining services does more than triple your reach; it has a multiplying effect.

Virtuous Cycle of Marketing

1. Blogging

Maintaining a blog is one of the most beneficial things you can do for your business. Not only does a blog educate your customers and demonstrate your expertise, it also greatly improves your search engine ranking. Every blog post increases the number of keywords and pages on your site, so search engines will rank your url more highly than other websites with less information.

Having a more highly-ranked site ensures more traffic to your blog, which leads to more people signing up for email newsletters, and more people liking your Facebook and Twitter accounts. If you run any Google AdWords campaigns, you can actually pay less and be ranked higher than less informative sites.

Blog posts also provide you with unique content to promote in your Facebook and Twitter messages, as well as your email newsletter. You can even run targeted marketing campaigns linking to specific blog posts, which are easier to set up than landing pages.

2. Social Media

Updating Facebook and Twitter pages shows customers your business is healthy, and you are keeping up with the times. Rather than expecting people to visit your website, you are meeting them where they already hang out and making it easy for them to interact with your business or check your hours.

Social media is an ideal tool to drive customers to your website when you need them to take an action. For example, you can promote your recent blog post on Facebook and Twitter. People click the link to visit your blog and spend time on your site, where you can convince them to make an appointment or call with questions.

You can even run specials on your Facebook and Twitter pages. Post a unique coupon code and send people to your website to make the purchase. You get to keep more money than if you partnered with a deal site like Groupon or Living Social.

Tell other fans on your Facebook and Twitter pages about your positive Yelp reviews, and encourage them to review you. You can even link directly to the positive review!

3. Email Marketing

Gaining the trust to receive an email address is one of the most powerful marketing relationships you can build. Make sure you always send relevant content so recipients are less likely to unsubscribe.

Blog posts are ideal for ensuring your emails are always interesting and informative. They enable you to take a "Something for Everyone" approach, as we mentioned in our blog post What Saturday Night Live Teaches Us About Email Marketing.

Facebook and Twitter are great tools to promote signing up for your email newsletters. People who sign up to receive your emails are more likely to make a purchase than someone who has only liked you on Facebook or followed you on Twitter.

This recent article from TIME states, "Forty-eight percent of consumers reported that social media posts are a great way to discover new products, brands, trends, or retailers, but less than 1% of transactions could be traced back to trackable social links... For repeat shoppers, 30% of online purchases begin with an e-mail from the retailer."

Our complete package offers everything you need for the basis of a healthy marketing program: Blogging, Social Media, and Email Marketing. Give us a call at 1-866-843-4490 or send an email to service@socialsonar.com to find out how our customized automated solution can work for your business.

Building Social Links

Social Sonar - Wednesday, July 04, 2012

HubSpot recently released a report entitled, "Social Link Building," which is a ten-step guide to helping companies create inbound links (also known as backlinks). Inbound links are "incoming links to a website...received from another website...." They benefit your business by creating brand awareness, bringing traffic to your website and raising your search engine rankings. According to HubSpot, "[a] business that doesn't generate inbound links is like a car without gas: it exists but doesn't work."

Here are their ten suggestions to help you build social links for your business:

1.    Guest Blog Posts. Having a guest blogger can often expose your business to a brand new audience. Contributing your work to a guest blog can help you build relationships within your industry. 

    Contests. The right contest can generate buzz, increase brand awareness and attract traffic to your website.  HubSpot cites the 2008 CopyBlogger contests posted on Twitter.  The rules required a response on Twitter and a response in the comments section of the blog.  Two simple blog posts attracted 111 links and many new readers due to the buzz surrounding the contest. 

    Controversy. Posting about a controversial subject certainly has the potential to attract attention. HubSpot warns that your subject should "incite debate from the inside out and not be provocative for the sake of it." Be prepared for some of your audience to disagree with you. However, if your subject is handled properly and your view can be backed up, posting about controversial subjects can promote link-sharing and drive traffic to your site.

    Directories. With the Yellow Pages a thing of the past, make sure your business is listed in online directories such as the Better Business Bureau, Yelp, CitySearch, alumni websites, industry directories, etc. Having inbound links will raise your search engine ranking, which will make your company come up faster in searches on modern-day Yellow Pages like Google or Yahoo!

    Lists. People love Top 10 lists. Just ask David Letterman. Corbett Barr of ThinkTraffic.net says his most popular post was "50 Photos To Inspire Life as a Digital Nomad." Putting together a list of success stories, contest winners or quotes can be a fast and easy way to create a popular blog post just waiting to be shared around the Internet. 

    Define New Concepts. These days, it can be difficult to create new concepts and original ideas. However, if you are able to spot a new trend in your industry early or even just identify complex ideas and start discussions on the topics, you may be recognized as an authority, which would drive traffic to your site. 

7.    How-To Content. People love D.I.Y. People search the Internet on a daily basis for step-by-step instructions on how to do a multitude of things. If you write a how-to post, it should be instructional (teach from scratch; don't assume the reader knows where to begin); it should be accessible ("easy to digest steps"); and, it should be well-researched.

    Badges. A badge is a logo/banner which serves as a mini ad for your company and should link back to your website. SocialFresh.com had readers nominate their favorite corporate blogs. The winners received badges, which linked back to SocialFresh.com. Some of those winners still have those badges on their website, which provides free advertising for SocialFresh.com. 

9.    Social Networks. Each post to your blog and website should include social media sharing buttons so that your readers can easily share content with a simple click of the button. Popular buttons are Facebook's "like" button, Twitter's "re-tweet" button and Google's "+1" button. 

10.    Content Distribution. Syndicating your article allows the content to be shared on a larger scale. EzineArticles.com is cited as one of the most famous article directories. Alltop, Technorati and SocialMediaToday.com are other services that feature your content but allow users to click through to your website. ReadWriteWeb can get articles syndicated on NYTimes.com.  Mashable can also get articles syndicated with USA Today and CNN.

By following these suggestions, you can build the social links that will help your business grow and thrive. 

Have you already implemented any of these suggestions? We love hearing your success stories!