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Tag Archive for online marketing

A Beginners Guide – Getting started with Google+

Follow these simple steps to Getting Started with Google+

  1. Create a Google+ Page

Firstly to create a Google+ Page for your business you need a personal Google+ profile. This is not too difficult to do. Once you have a Gmail email account you can just claim your page.

Create Google+ Page

Once that is done, you can start your business page here.  Remember to choose the business type that correctly represents your type of business.

Google+ choose your business type

  1. Verify your page, and claim your vanity URL (for example plus.google.com/mybusinessname/)

After you have selected what type of business page you want to create Google will ask you to locate your business on Google Maps.

Verify your business on Google+

Next Google will ask you to verify your business. You will be sent a unique code to the address you listed. Once you receive this code through the post you can complete the process.

If you do not verify your business you will still be able to use the page, but for search results it is best to verify.

  1. Complete your profile

Fill in all the profile information. Make sure to fill out your about page as completely as possible. Include an interesting bio that accurately describes your business. Next add your logo and cover photo. Choose images that correctly describes your brand so that people will recognize you straight away. This is also important so it doesn’t create brand confusion.

Useful Tip: Google recommends that your Cover Photo size is 1080 x 608 pixels and 270 x 270 pixels for your Logo.

Your reputation in social media
  1. Add the Google+ badge or button to drive followers

The Google+ Buttons is a customizable widget that helps you connect your site to your Google+ Page. The buttons allows visitors to +1 you, add you to their circles, share content directly from your website and recommends your content to Google.

Google+ Buttons are added by adding script to your website. The script can be found on the Google Developers Page.

You can use the following Google+ buttons:

  • +1 Button
  • Follow Button
  • Hangout button
  1. Start Connecting

As with other social networks once you are on Google+ it is important to post regularly.

Posts can by shared publicly or only with your circles.

When you follow people you add them to your circles. Circles can be explained as being much like email lists in that it allows you to organize people you want to communicate with and helps you send targeted communication. Apart from the default circles (Following, Friends, Family) you can add more circles and name them accordingly.

If you don’t want to use circles your posts will be shared publicly. This will be fine if you want to get started right away, but keep on working on those circles for optimal strategic communication.

So what do you post?

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Share information about your business
  • Post links to blog posts you have written
  • Post News or upcoming events
  • Use Graphic/Visual Content – photos, images, infographics, videos
  • Share interesting information, posts or links from other blogs or sites related to yours

I will be going in depth about Google+ posting in a coming article, so be on the look-out for that.

5 Ways to engage customers on Facebook

5 ways to engage customers on facebook

We have talked about Facebook and the value it adds to your business before. Now it is time to engage your customers. Here are my top 5 ways on how to engage customers on Facebook.

  1. Post often

This is a simple one – your customers can’t engage if there is nothing to engage with. So once again content is key. Keep in mind that content needs to be new and fresh. Try to post at least once a day. It is also a good idea to use a call to action so that customers know what is expected of them.

  1. Use questions

One sure way to get your customers to engage is to involve them in the post. By asking a question you easily get them to interact. This in turn creates activity on your page and also boosts popularity.

  1. Images and videos creates more likes and shares

Your content needs to be of such a standard that it firstly draws attention and secondly makes people want to share it. What draws your attention more? A sentence that is text format only, or a colorful image. I think the answer is obvious.

  1. Offer promotions

In today’s economy it is all about the money, so use it! Everybody loves a bargain and you have to give it to them. This can be done in two ways. One – advertise your brand! Tell them about your specials. Two – get them to interact by offering a discount coupon or something free for liking or sharing your Facebook page.

You can also use specific promotional codes so that you can track which post brought you the clients.

Your reputation in social media
  1. Competitions

Competitions are a great way to market your brand. Asking people to like or comment in order to win something is easy for them and great for you. Your followers will grow and so will your brand. This is also a great way of marketing a certain product.

There are however a few rules that has to be followed when launching a competition on Facebook. You should always adhere to these rules as to ensure that your page does not get removed by Facebook.

In short you CAN:

  • Ask people to like a post to enter
  • Ask people to comment on a post to enter
  • Ask people to private message the page to enter
  • Ask people to post on your page to enter

You CAN NOT:

  • Ask people to share to enter
  • Ask people to invite to enter
  • Ask people to tag themselves in content to enter

Business Page rules can be found here https://www.facebook.com/page_guidelines.php. They did however make it a bit easier for launching promotions etc. with the following amendments https://www.facebook.com/business/news/page-promotions-terms.

Lastly remember that whatever you post it should be interesting and most important of all posts should be shareable. Use a variety of different posts and content to keep your customers engaged and interested. Good luck and happy posting!

How to use Facebook effectively

How to use Facebook effectivelyIf you are not sure what to do with your facebook page now that you created it, this article is for you. Just a few simple steps can make all the difference.  If you want to know how to use Facebook effectively we need to start at the beginning …

What are your goals?
Firstly it is very important to establish your goals …what do you want to achieve with your Facebook Page?
Secondly get a clear idea of who your target market is? Who is your audience? Who are you talking to?

As soon as that is clear you can decide on what type of post you should post. Tailored with the right message to the right people. There is no sense in posting anything if you are not clear on why you are doing it in the first place … Example: you are not going to post messages about skateboards if your target market is over 80!!! Firstly the over 80’s are rarely on facebook and secondly why would they be interested in skateboards?

Possible Goals
You want to create brand awareness
You want to engage with your customers
You want to grow your consumer base

Your reputation in social media

Whatever your goal may be, one important aspect remains … you cannot achieve anything if you don’t have people on your Facebook Page! You need people who are active, engaged and interested! The more they engage, the more people will see your posts and the more people will like your page!

How do you do that?
It is simple … Get people to engage with your Page timeline!

It is important to get the people to engage. Why? If they are engaged they are more likely to participate and more likely to share, like and comment. As soon as this happens your posts will spread like wildfire! The more it spreads, the more people you reach!

  • Share updates, questions, photos, links, infographics, text and other content on your Page regularly. Use different types of posts to keep it interesting.
  • Post at least a few times a week so people who like you see your stories in their news feeds and visitors to your Page always see something new.
  • Don’t make it all about ME ME ME. ME gets boring after a while, so post some interesting stuff related to your page as well.
  • Your posts must be shareable! By this I mean it should be good enough for other people to want to share it. If it doesn’t make me look good, why would I want to share it with my friends?
  • Make sure people notice your most important content by pinning posts to the top of your Page or highlighting/starring them so they’re bigger.
  • Respond! Respond! Respond! When people engage with you, make sure to respond so they know you’re listening. By not responding in a timely manner you will lose not only clients/customers but it will do your brand damage. If they know your page is where they can get answers they will keep on coming back.

What about BAD comments?
Always and I mean ALWAYS respond whether it is a bad comment or a great comment. Use bad and great comments as feedback on how to better your business. If someone liked something a lot, maybe more of that. If someone had a bad experience use that info to better your business. In business nothing is more valuable than feedback. We need to know what clients/customers think of us and we need to build on that! Facebook and social other social media means that you don’t have to pay thousands of rands for surveys or focus groups – you can have feedback for free! USE IT!

How to set up your Facebook Page

How to set up your business Facebook PageFacebook Pages are the window of your business. Unlike websites, Facebook Pages are constantly updated with new information, happenings or specials. If used correctly it can be your greatest communication tool.

Your Facebook Page is a platform for you not only to give through important information, but also to receive it.

If used correctly it can be a very effective tool with which to receive feedback – and feedback helps you improve your business!

What to do:

Go to https://www.facebook.com/pages/create/?ref_type=registration_form.
You will have to log in with your own username and password.

Choose the right type of page that you want … Is the page for a small business, an artist or a big company?

From there you just follow the steps and focus on the main elements as listed below.

Tip: the more info you give the easier it will be for users to find your page.

The main elements:

Your reputation in social media
  1. Profile Image

The profile image should be your company logo
Specifications: 180 x 180 pixels

  1. Cover Photo

Use a photo that captures the essence of your brand and showcases your product or service. Images are powerful ways of capturing the audience’s attention, so don’t mess it up and always be honest!
Specifications: 851 x 315 pixels

Cover photos cannot include:

  • Contact information such as a website address, email, mailing address, or information that should go in your Page’s “About” section.
  • References to Facebook features or actions, such as “Like” or “Share” or an arrow pointing from the cover photo to any of these features.
  • Calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends”

It is against the rules as set out by the Facebook developers.

  1. About Section

Tell the world who you are. Again here it is very important to be honest! Nothing loses customers faster than portraying a false image! Honesty and transparency are key.

  1. Page info

Fill in all the fields – website address, business hours, etc. Here you want to be as detailed as possible as it makes it easier for people to find your Page. There is also nothing more frustrating than visiting a company’s Page but there is no information on the company!

Make sure that your Facebook Web Address correlates with your Page Name / Business Name.

Start Posting:

You are now ready to go! Look out for my next post on how to use Facebook effectively

5 steps to creating a successful online marketing campaign

Follow these five easy steps to create a successful online marketing campaign for your business.

1. Create a consistent look and feel
This is important in order to establish a strong brand.

2. Identify your target audience
Ask questions like: Who are you talking to? Who is my customers?

Your reputation in social media

3. Pick your channels
Ask where on the web do my customers “hang out”? Whether it is Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google+ … that is where you go!

4. Create content that is clear and understandable to the everyday person; content that can be repurposed or adapted to suit different channels.
Remember that just because it makes sense to you, doesn’t mean it will make sense to the lay-man.

5. Get your staff on the same page
It wouldn’t do your business any good if staff is not up to date on what you are posting or offering online!

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