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Archive for the ‘social engagement’ tag

Don’t be a copycat to boost social media shares

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Wondering why you aren’t getting more shares from your Facebook posts and blogs and re-tweets on Twitter? Maybe despite all your efforts to engage with customers, your content is missing the mark. After all, it’s not always easy to understand exactly what motivates followers when some of the most popular social media content involves cats and bacon, according to Marketo. The marketing automation firm estimates that there are 30,400,000 searches for cats each month on Google and 6, 120,000 for bacon – the sizzling kind not the actor.

However tempting it might be to populate your social media with lots of cute cats and bacon recipes, they aren’t going to do much to increase your sales over the long run, unless you’re Friskies or Hormel. You need to understand what motivates followers to share. A study conducted by the New York Times of 2500 medium/heavy online sharers indicated that:

  • 49 percent say sharing allows them to inform others of products they care about and potentially change opinions or encourage action.
  • 94 percent consider how the information they share will be useful to the recipient
  • 68 percent share to give people a better sense of who they are and what they care about.
  • 73 percent share information because it helps them connect with others who share their interests
  • 78 percent share information online because it lets them stay connect3ed to people they may not otherwise stay in touch with
  • 69 percent share information because it makes them feel more involved in the world
  • 84 percent share because it is a way to support causes or issues they care about

Plan ahead

Now that you know what motivates followers to share, put your content plan in place. Start by knowing exactly who your audience is and what they find of interest. Don’t make assumptions. Check out some of your competitor’s sites, if necessary, to see what they are posting and how well it’s being received.

Create an editorial calendar for content and stick with it.  You can supplement scheduled posts with other content as it becomes available – news or market reports for example. Also don’t spread yourself too thin. If you don’t have time to populate every social media channel with content, pick the ones that are most popular with your targets.

Take stock of interactions. Your followers will tell you what is meaningful to them by commenting and asking questions.

 

 

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Written by Barbara Kohn

March 19th, 2014 at 9:24 pm

How Social Media Impacts Your Search Rankings

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Did you know that social signals increasingly are influencing search? In “Relationship Status: Social Signals and SEO are Officially an Item,” marketing strategist Janessa Magone writes “….there is now proof that social presence is essential when it comes to search engine optimization. Sites with a strong social presence and a high amount of social user engagement rank higher. The more likes, comments, and tweets you have on a site, the more powerful your SEO becomes.”

News outlet Bit Rebels also writes that “It’s not a secret that Google is implementing more and more influence into the number of plus ones, Facebook likes and shares, and Twitter retweets in their way of determining the influence and popularity of content.”. As more people like and share your content, the higher it will rank in search.

Create shareable content

As you develop your content strategy, consider the following content types that have proven to be ‘highly shareable.”

News: In addition posting news about your company, share news about your market or industry with your followers. Let’s face it, there’s so much being reported no one can keep up to date with all of the news. Help your followers by reporting on major announcements that impact them.

Case studies: Case studies are one of the best ways to show how others are using your products and services. They make your products “come alive.” Be sure to turn case studies into an interesting and entertaining story.

Videos: What better way to inform and entertain than video. To show how powerful video can be, consider these statistics from Social Times about the value of video:

  • Customers who watch videos of products or services are 85 percent more likely to make a purchase.
  • 68 percent of viewers share video links.
  • The average user’s visit to a text and image-based website lasts only 43 seconds; for a website with video, the average visit lasts 5 minutes and 50 seconds.

Images: Nothing capture our attention more than an image. Make sure you use visually compelling images that resonate with your followers and encourage them to share and add comments.

How-to-guides: We all turn to the Web for how-to information. Contribute to the cause with an easy to follow step-by-step guide. You’ll win lots of fans and shares.

Top 10 Lists: It’s not only David Letterman who attracts viewers to his top ten lists. Everybody loves ‘top 10s’ since they make things easy or easier to remember and can be quickly scanned.

Interviews: Boost your standing and credibility by interviewing an acknowledged expert in an area that is trending on social media channels and of importance to your followers.

Surveys or polls: Everyone has an opinion and loves to share it. Include surveys or polls in your content strategy to find out what your followers are thinking about your offerings or others.

Infographics: Transform a report into an engaging Infographic to make it easy for followers to digest your information.

SlideShare presentations: Turn any presentation into a SlideShare to add to your blog or other social media channels. A SlideShare presentation provides a good way to advance your thought leadership position and share your expertise; and it provides an easy way to get feedback.

Ensure content is likeable

If you want your content to pass the likeability test, make sure it’s:

  • Valuable to your audience and not just something you find interesting or that is overly promotional about your products and services;
  • Unique in offering a viewpoint or an opinion that challenges the status quo;
  • Engaging so that your audience asks a questions, makes a comment or adds more insight; and
  • Varied to maintain audience interest.

Remember, quality content will increase your search rankings in more ways than one.

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Written by Barbara Kohn

January 15th, 2014 at 10:47 pm

My Content Marketing Resolutions for 2014

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The New Year is always a good time for new beginnings, including an assessment of what you can do to improve your content marketing program. Here is a short list of New Year’s Resolutions for your content campaign:

  1. Create Regular Content – This is one that we plan to adopt here at Write On Content. You will note we have been sporadic in our blogging (like the shoemaker’s children, we seem to leave our own marketing needs to deal with later). Resolve to create a schedule and feed your content channels regularly. Consistency is the only way to build a following.
  2. Engage – Be sure your content is not only compelling, but engages your followers and encourages interaction. Resolve to promote a dialogue with your followers through whatever channels you use. Content should be the conversation starter, but the dialogue shouldn’t’ stop there.
  3. Mind Your Channels – Using the right outlets to reach your target audience is an ongoing effort. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn are probably on your radar. But are you using Quora, Reddit, or Pinterest? Are you just posting, or are you monitoring and commenting as well? Make a resolution to be more active where it counts in the year to come.
  4. Measure – Don’t rely on “gut feel” alone to determine how well your content marketing program is doing. Measure the results. Keep track of comments, Likes, and clickthroughs. Determine what topics have appeal for your audience and which channels get the most traction.
  5. Innovate – Successful content marketing campaigns are built around the concept of “rinse and repeat”; determine what works, refine it, and then keep using it. That doesn’t mean you should stop there. Continue to push the envelope and experiment with new content ideas, new engagement strategies, and new channels. Experiment so you can expand your content marketing palette and have more resources to draw from in the future.

Here’s wishing you a prosperous and successful 2014 filled with lots of followers and lots of leads.

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Written by Tom Woolf

January 9th, 2014 at 11:45 pm