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How to Make Social Media Work Double Time on Your Blog

How to Make Social Media Work Double Time on Your Blog

The world of blogging and the world of social media used to be two very distinct Internet phenomena. One was known for being a place for serious conversation in long form with posting schedules; the other was known for zippy entertainment in spontaneous bursts. These days, however, social media and blogging have begun to merge into two sides of the same marketing tactic. Connecting with your audience can take place in both spaces and statistics tell us it would be foolish to ignore either.

For example: More than 80% of Millennials, the audience with the most purchasing power, check Twitter daily. And almost 70% of the entire adult American population uses Facebook. Those are just two of the many popular social media platforms out there. And as for blogging? Search engines index over 430% more pages from website with blogs, than those without. So how can you use these tools together to boost your engagement all around?

Cross Promotion on a Blog

The first way to integrate social media accounts into your blogging is by simply including your social media content in your blog posts. This doesn’t mean rehashing what you’ve Twitted or Snapped today; but it does mean embedding content that leads to your social media accounts, such as embedding Instagram photos or Facebook videos. There are two reasons for this practice:

First, it gives your content a continuity that clearly links your blog and your social media presences. Second, by embedding the content rather than reposting it, you’re giving your audience an easy way to find you and follow you on social media.

Video Content is King

It’s no secret that video content is the number one choice for sharing information online. In fact, YouTube reaches more 18-49-year-old Internet users than any cable network in the U.S. does TV watchers. That’s an astounding statistic that proves just how powerful video content is.

In your blog, consider posting your YouTube videos with content below for people who may not want to watch the video, or who want to skim the content and briefly check out the video. This integrates your video content with a blog that can be indexed by search engines.

Other Tips for Integrating Social Media with Your Blog

Want to integrate your social media accounts with your blog even more? Try these ideas:

  • Include a share button so that your audience can post your blog post to their own social media accounts. If you use a “Click to Tweet” service, be sure to add a brand-specific hashtag or your username so that the Tweet leads their followers to you.
  • Keep your follow buttons visible and up to date. Social media brands change their look frequently. Keep yourself caught up to ensure your audience that you are a quality account to follow.
  • Integrate social media only how it makes sense. Does your social media feed include contests and limited time offers? Make your current feed on your website visible for customers to take advantage of the information. If your feed is more about curating blog posts and sharing industry news, consider letting your more in-depth blog content shine.

Efficiently Integrating Blogging and Social Media

The key point is to not ignore the power of either platform. More than 409 million people view blogs every month on just one blogging platform, and social media has billions of users every day. Integrate the two to streamline your audience generating efforts, and you’ll soon find that all of your content is doing double duty. This saves you time and money as you work towards growing.

How To Get More Engagement

How To Get More Engagement

Social media can be a powerful tool in your online marketing efforts. Sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn should be big parts of your Internet marketing strategy, but the fact remains that these networks must be used correctly if you’re going to leverage full value from them. One of the most important things to understand is the need for engagement. Social media is not a one-way street. It’s a two-way conversation, which means that you need to engage your friends and followers and make them part of that conversation. How do you do that? Here are a few best practices to follow to improve your results.

  1. Know Your Audience and Share Content That Interests THEM

You might be under the impression that your social media accounts are about your company. That’s only partially true. They’re really about your followers and fans. It’s all about keeping them interested and engaged, so make sure you’re sharing content that interests them, and that does not necessarily tie directly to your own products or services. With that being said, you can do a great deal that does tie directly to your company without making it a sales pitch that will interest your followers.

  1. Know about Adjacent Content

Adjacent content is a confusing term that really means nothing more than content that is somehow related to your audience and will be of interest to them, that doesn’t originate from your company. You don’t need to share a competitor’s post, but you can share news stories of interest, community events, industry trend information and the like. This will give you quite a bit of content to post that doesn’t fall into the realm of being promotional.

  1. Responding to Followers

You can’t expect your audience to be engaged if you’re not willing to engage with them. This means that you need to reply to comments, respond to mentions and the like. You need to be involved. If you’re not, you really can’t expect your audience to be, as your lack of interaction proves that you really don’t care about them. It implies that you’re only on social media for your own benefit. While there’s nothing wrong with a company pursuing profitability (that’s sort of the point), you should never be blatant about it. Build relationships, and sales will follow.

  1. Don’t Over-Post

Striking the right posting frequency on social networks can be a huge challenge. It varies a lot from one network to another, as well. For instance, a tweet is generally only viable for about 18 minutes after you tweet it (although it technically lives forever and inappropriate tweets can come back to bite you long down the road). However, you shouldn’t tweet ever 30 minutes to make up for that fact. You need to post often enough that your audience is engaged, but not put off. After all, too much of a good thing is still too much. This applies to all of your social networks, from SnapChat to Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and more.

  1. Add Value

While sharing humorous pictures, posts or videos can be great, as can new product announcements, community event posts and the like, don’t neglect the ability to share tips and tricks with your audience. These can involve your products or services, or a related area of your customers’ lives where you can provide additional benefits. For instance, a gutter company might post tips about roof care and maintenance.

Social media engagement doesn’t have to be an impossible challenge. Follow these tips to see better results, and get in touch with Words You Want for professional help.

Increase Social Media Engagement with these 5 Tips

Increase Social Media Engagement with these 5 Tips

If your business isn’t involved in social media, you’re missing out on an incredible tool to help build your brand awareness and expand your audience. There are literally billions of people on Facebook alone, much less LinkedIn, Twitter and the other social networks. Of course, finding success here is not as simple as creating an account and posting. You need to ensure that you’re engaging your audience, and that can be hard to do. Thankfully, there are a few ways to increase social media engagement.

Listen to What’s Being Said

One of the most overlooked benefits of social media is that it gives you, the business owner or decision maker, unprecedented access to the private conversations and pain points of your followers. Use the free tools available to tap into the conversation and learn what your audience is saying about your brand, about products or services similar to yours or what troubles they’re experiencing where your brand could help. Tools on offer include Google Analytics, as well as Social Mention and many others to tap in and drill down.

Join Forums and Groups

Both Facebook and LinkedIn allow you to create and join forums and groups dedicated to specific interests. LinkedIn is the best option for B2B companies, as it allows you to provide value and relevant information for users with problems related to what your business offers. However, don’t neglect Facebook, as the social network has tens of thousands of users groups that are filled with people who have questions or need a helping hand that only you can provide.

Conduct Surveys or Polls

Customers love being able to give feedback and feeling as though their wants, needs and opinions matter to the businesses they patronize. You can enhance your social media engagement by conducting surveys or polls and asking your audience for answers to questions that matter to you as well as to them. This can allow you to really drill down into what makes your audience tick and can provide information and answers that can be applied to all aspects of your online marketing strategy, and possibly even your product lineup or your service offerings. It can also help pinpoint differences between your business and competitors.

Give Followers an Inside Look

Social networks like Facebook are great places to give your followers a behind-the-scenes look at your business, your employees, your processes and more. A quick glance at your own Facebook feed should show you just how widespread (and successful) this practice has become. As an example, local breweries across the country post videos showing their employees at work, their beer being bottled, their tasting rooms in full swing and more. It’s a great way to really make a deeper connection and share something that your audience will appreciate (after all, they’re following you because they’re interested in your company, so give them what they want).

Get in on Hashtags

Hashtags have been around for a pretty long time now, but it’s surprising how many businesses just don’t know about them or how to use them. Really, they’re nothing more than ways to tag specific types of content in a social post. For instance, a farmers’ market might post a picture of produce lining a table with the hashtag #eatlocal or #localgrown. You can turn this to your advantage by using established hashtags that relate to your business, products or services, or even inventing your own in certain instances.

Increasing social engagement doesn’t have to be rocket science. The tips above will help you do just that.

 

5 Tips for Better Social Media Ads

5 Tips for Better Social Media Ads

While simply being present and active on the right social networks can make a big difference in the success of your online marketing efforts, it’s no secret that social media ads can propel you much higher. In some instances, putting an ad on Facebook or another social network might actually be both cheaper and more effective than attempting to build your audience by hand. Of course, this is still advertising, and if your ads are not created correctly, not only will you fail to see success, you’ll be spending money just to fail. How do you get better results from your social media ads?

Know Your Budget

This tip doesn’t really apply to your entire marketing budget, but rather to what you can afford to spend per user acquired through social media ads. What is each conversion worth to your company? For instance, if it costs you $5 per person and you get five new followers, you’ll have spent $25, but for what? Is that worth it to your business? Each company is unique, so you’ll need to determine this for yourself.

Test More Than One Version of Your Ad

In the industry, this is referred to as A/B testing because you’re testing multiple versions (A, B, C, D) of the same ad to determine which one works best for which type of audience. The more you can experiment, the better your results will be. You’ll find that you can tweak one ad and use it for more than one audience, as well, reducing the costs going into the creation of your ads while simultaneously improving performance.

Use Facebook Buttons

When you create an ad for use on the news feed in Facebook, you’ll be able to choose to use one of several different buttons, or to omit the button completely. When in doubt, use the “learn more” button to encourage your viewers to take action. Leaving out the button means that you’re missing a critical component to your ad – a direction for users to take action. While they can click the ad, certainly, this isn’t always clear. Having a “learn more” button tells your users what you want them to do. Other button options available include “shop now”, “sign up”, “download” and more.

Test Different Ad Copy

While images are crucial to the performance of your ad, the ad copy itself is just as important. You cannot afford to make this a blatant ad like you’d find in a magazine. The copy should incite curiosity, tease a solution to a problem, or pose a question that your audience is asking and imply that the answer can be found with your company. Use the same principles you would if you were creating a PPC ad for Google AdWords. Don’t sell outright. Incite curiosity and get the reader to click the ad.

Create Custom Landing Pages for Each Ad

In order to ensure that you’re only paying for ads that are actually working and to drill down into ad performance, create a custom landing page for each page. You can then use Google Analytics or another similar program to dig into the number of visitors who land on the page and where they came from (in the instance that you’re using the same ad on more than one site).

With the right steps and the right tools, you can increase the effectiveness of your social media ads without spending a fortune.

 

Do you have any social media ad tips? Share them in the comments!

Anatomy of a Social Media Ad: Understanding the Most Important Aspects

Let’s be frank. Social media marketing can be confusing and frustrating. Just creating an account can be a challenge at times, much less actually finding your fans and followers, interacting with them and growing your success. While social media ads can be undeniably beneficial, they must be created in the right way for them to work the way you want. To really do that, you’ll need to know more about the anatomy of a successful ad.

First, a Caveat

Before we get too far, understand that the actual anatomy of ads will vary from one network to another. The overall layout and design elements that go into a Facebook ad will be very different from one on Pinterest or Twitter. With that being said, they do have many similarities, and whether you’re creating an ad for the desktop, mobile, photo engagement, website conversion or something else, these tips will help.

Headline

Headlines should be short, evocative and punchy. They should not be used for explaining, highlighting features or the like. With Facebook, you have a mere 25 characters, so you need to make them count. It should grab attention and encourage the viewer to move from the headline down to the body copy below it.

Body Copy

In most instances, you will have some sort of body copy for your ad. This is just the text that speaks to your viewer. It should be concise, compelling and at least marginally tied to the image you’re using (more on images later). Remember that this is ad copy, so it cannot be purely informational. However, it can also not be an outright sales pitch. It should strike a balance, inciting curiosity, or even evoking humor, but encouraging the reader to take whatever action you want (click, sign up, download, etc.).

Photo/Image

In most instances, you’ll use an image of some type, although you may also use a video snippet in your ad. In no case should you use plain text for your ad without any supporting graphics. That is a short road to failure. Make sure your image is evocative and ties at least somewhat into the text and into your offering, whether that’s a service, a product, an experience or something else. For instance, a travel company could use an image of a happy couple aboard the deck of a yacht. A sportswear company could use an image of their product in action, a sports figure/player, or something similar.

Call to Action

All ads should have some sort of call to action. These can be direct, such as “Click here to buy now” or they can be indirect, such as “learn more”. The call to action should match the tone of the body copy, and should also relate to the action you want the user to take. For instance, you wouldn’t use “buy now” if you want the user to click the ad and follow your Facebook account, rather than making a purchase.

Again, while the elements mentioned above are specific to Facebook ads, all social media ads have similar characteristics. The tips above should help you create more compelling, engaging ads, although ads should never be the entirety of your social media marketing strategy. You need to combine this with content marketing and other efforts. To learn more about how to succeed with content marketing, get in touch with Words You Want.

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Tips for Improving Social Media Ad Performance

Social media communicationThere is no doubt about it – the total amount of social ad dollars is steadily increasing. According to recent reports, 2016 is expected to generate upward of $13.43 billion in social advertisement dollars, with social networks accounting for 20 percent of all U.S. digital advertisement spending.

Social giants such as Twitter and Facebook are going up against one another to grab their own piece of the pie by offering advertisers the shiniest and newest ad formats. These are providing a number of new promises to advertisers, including lower CPEs and higher ad recalls.

Some methods you can implement now to see greater returns on all your social media ad dollars can be found here.

Invest in Twitter Video Campaigns

If you distribute your videos on Twitter, you will have a cost efficient and effective way to drive up the frequency and reach of your video buys.

When you purchase and run a video campaign through Twitter, you are going to pay-per-view. Twitter states that a video view is chargeable when the video is 100 percent in view on the device being used and has been playing for, at a minimum, three seconds. This is efficient because you only have to pay for actual engagement, rather than impressions.

Run the Same Advertisement on Instagram and Facebook Simultaneously

Facebook refers to this strategy with the #CheckTheBox hashtag internally. This means that in order for you to run your ads on each platform, you have to check the right box in the Power Editor. This is pretty self-explanatory once you begin creating your ad.

This will allow you to not only have a presence on Instagram but also minimize the costs of your Facebook ads by providing more opportunities to reach potential customers throughout the day.

The ad you create will be optimized based on the actual objective selected. An example would be if you opt to “Send People to Your Website.” This means that the ad will be optimized to get additional clicks to your actual website. When you run your ad on both Instagram placement and Facebook placements it will be optimized to show on the location that will acquire the most clicks for your website at the lowest possible cost.

The Carousel Ads on Facebook

Another effective method to improve ad performance is by using Facebook Carousel ads. This allows you to showcase a number of images and links all in a single advertisement. These ads are able to be used in a number of ways, across any campaign objectives, which is typically determined by your brand.

According to Facebook, using a carousel link ad will drive a lower cost-per-conversion of 30 to 50 percent, which can be beneficial for businesses trying to make the most of their social media advertising dollars.

Another benefit of this type of ad is that it provides Facebook with insights to the links in the ad that are performing at the highest levels and provides you with the option to optimize the image order based on overall engagement.

The fact is, different ad formats and platforms will work differently for each business and industry. You may have to implement a bit of trial and error to ensure that the results you achieve meet your goals and objectives. Taking the time to get to know the latest and greatest options available can help you target and optimize your efforts better than ever before. When you use social media ads properly they can help drive traffic and conversions, which all businesses could benefit from.

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