Busy day today so for my weekly blog, I thought I would share something quick that you may be aware of. The "secret" Twitter dot. For those of you who use Twitter frequently, especially for marketing, you may not be aware of how to make sure your message gets out to all of your followers when you may be tweeting to say, just one person. Use the ol dot. Example:
You have to put something before the username to trick Twitter into thinking it’s a regular tweet for mass consumption. Perhaps you’ve seen people start their tweets with a period? Tricking Twitter is exactly what they’re doing. If you haven’t seen this before, here’s a sample:
.@rachelsklar just took at the stage at #SXSW to talk about trends for women in comedy. Any questions I should ask her?Now this tweet will get pushed to everyone following me, regardless of whether they also follow Rachel. Pretty slick eh? You all have a good rest of week!
FDMC Social & Digital Media
Twitter is a business social media tool. If you do not think that, think again. If you are using it for your business, are you taking full advantage of the capabilities of Twitter? Here are a few tips on using Twitter to engage your customer base and perhaps add to that. Twitter as well as other social media platforms are an extension of your brand. You may have set office or store hours but social media is your marketing arm that is open 24-7 365 days of the year. When you are not there, it should be selling for you. Let's get to my points.
Photos: Twitter now allows photos. Using interesting eye-catching photos will draw attention to your tweets. Make them fun but not stupid. Don't make them overbearing either like "Buy Now!" Use them to show your brand or for "inside" events. Allow interaction with your followers as they may want to know more about the photo.
Reply: You get tweets with questions or comments, take time to reply. Yes I am guilty of this sometimes but if you pick up followers, follow back. You get a nice comment, thank them. You get a question, answer them. This builds rapport
Don't blab on and on: Twitter max characters are 140. Keep your posts to that or less. Attention span today with social media is less than 3 seconds under most cases, especially with young followers. They don't care nor have the time to read all your stuff. Try to keep it short
The "Other Guys": Follow what your competition is doing. If you sell widgets, see who else is selling widgets in your market area. If they have 500 followers and you have 75, you need to get on the ball and figure out what they are doing right and what you are doing wrong.
The Technical Stuff: Learn how to use the tools of Twitter. Consider adding HootSuite so you can automate your tweets. It is free or you can move up to the business paid platform. Learn to use # hash tags to broaden your "hits" on your tweets. Learn to use the . (period) to allow all your followers to see your tweets instead of the @ symbol which is a single reply. (Unless you really want to just reply to one follower obviously)
Good luck with Twitter and I hope these points were of value to you!
I am going to start right off by saying that I don't know what to think of Twitter's new app. Appealing, fun, yet from a business application aspect? What can one do with a 6 second loop video? First let's cover the facts. Twitter and Facebook have a love-hate relationship. Also Twitter feels left out of the surging video application market thus we find Vine. As you may know when Vine came out, you could find your Facebook buddies but Facebook pulled the plug on that quickly. You can hash tag search your friends and send them 6 seconds of whatever you think is worthy of your looped video. Also ugly, especially for the younger ones who like Twitter, porn has quickly found its way upon the Vine. See this link from "Mashable". Parents beware. Vine does allow editing and it's fairly simple. It is only on i-Phones at this time but I was able to download it on my i-Pad and experimented with it for a bit. Your phone number is optional. Since I am still deciding as to whether I want it associated to my Twitter account, this is a good way to "test the waters". Now for business applications. I can see perhaps,some imaginative 6 second loops of a guy with a "Super Sale" sign at a business location or a product demo so I am not going to be a narrow-minded moron here and say there is not a place for this app but I think for now, its more for fun and younger users to share "whatever" it is they want to share in 6 seconds. I sincerely believe Twitter came up with this app to counteract Social Cam, Facebook, and their Instagram app. Download it for yourself if you are a i-Phone user and decide for yourself. Will this app die on the "Vine"? We shall see.
I wanted to devote some more time to Twitter as I felt it necessary o examine more on the subject of "How Often To Tweet" section. I have had several of my clients ask me about this. The answer is "There is no real answer!" Tweeting on Twitter is a case by case basis. Depeding on your product or service, you can tweet 3 times a day or 3 times a week. I, myself, tweet usually twice a day, maybe 3 times a day if I find something interesting I want to put up on my Twitter site. For businesses, tweeting too much can get annoying to say the least and many times, your tweet will go unnoticed.
You want to tweet to the Eastern time zone as that part of the country gets moving first. If your saying that I am not getting up at 4 or 5 am to tweet I would not either. This is why some great minds invented HootSuite and other similar software to pre-program tweets to be delivered for you the next morning or whenever you want from your desktop, smart phone, or tablet. Simply plan ahead by a day, plug in the times, and you are set.
There is a big difference between personal Twitter and your business Twitter site. You need to be very careful not to mix personal comments or thoughts about subjects on your business account. People very quickly form an image or opinion of you and your business. Keep your tweets to your product or service and relate to that. It is ok to tweet an article that is revelant to your business and it ok to reply to your followers if they have questions
or comments. do not become obseesed with Social Media to the point you are not doing your other tasks. I plan my tweets to hit around 8:00 EST. and then call it a day. I will look at my board and see if I need to reply to anyone. Another "housecleaning" item is to verify your followers. Yes, there are "spam" followers on Twitter who have no goal in following you other than to self promote their 1-900 service, or visit their "website". You need to quickly uncheck them and block them. This can create problems for other followers who may pre-judge you even though you didn't ask for that follower in the first place. Hope this has been of some help for you. Chirp (tweet) away and have fun!
More and more businesses than ever before have discovered Twitter and how it can help promote their business. The phrase here is "they have discovered". Few have actually grasped the power of Twitter, the rest have said "Oh this is cool but now what?" Either they go off and pay experts to Tweet on their behalf or try to throw up random bursts of phrases and hope for the best. Whatever your goals are with Twitter, remember if you are going to use it to promote your business, it is open 24-7-365 and make sure you understand it has global outreach. Don't put your personal life on your business Twitter site. If it is that important to you, open another Twitter site. Don't mix business
with pleasure as they say. If you want to begin Tweeting on Twitter with your brand new site, here are some key tips.
1. Be Yourself
Let your business reflect through your
personality. Many local people reading your tweets know you anyway so don't try
to be somebody you are not nor post things that are not true or embellish your
business. It is ok to link material that has common ground with your business or
2. Good Material
On those links. Make sure they are something your customers or followers
would take interest in. Make those links relevant to your profession or
business. Don't post something that just because you thought it was
interesting that the rest of world would think so too. Think outside, not
Twitter is more than throwing up posts and links. Engage your followers,
follow others in your industry, tweet back to your followers and those you
follow. If you plan on being robotic with promotions and worthless content,
don't waste your time or their time. You know that @ symbol on your twitter
account and on all your followers? It is crying out to you to say "USE ME!"
4. What to say in 140 characters
Twitter is popular because it is quick and easy to read. You are forced to
say what you have to say in 140 characters or less. Use keywords that reflect
your topic and always keep your business or profession within that context.
5. Link, link, link
I mentioned links earlier but I wanted to as my last point say
it again. But this time remember to link your Facebook fan page and link your
website to Twitter. You can also link Linkedin
as well (wasn't that catchy?) There are a few more but these 3 are probably the
most popular for SMB's right now.
My final observation for using Twitter for business is developing a catchy background. While Twitter has standard backgrounds for "default" use, If you are serious about using Twitter for business social media, you need to brand your background just as you are
branding your business everyday. If you don't know how to do this, get someone
within your organization to do it for you who is savvy
with Adobe Photoshop, illustrator, or even Microsoft Publisher. Hope this
has been of some help to you. Good luck!
In past blogs, I have focused on the small business and how to launch a social media campaign. Getting their brand out with basic social media tools. If you have not read those blogs, you might want to go back in the "vault" and read them. In a nutshell, trying to help the Mom and Pop businesses launch a basic Facebook fan page or Twitter Account to get into the digital age was the main focus. While many larger SMBs have tried to do this on their own, they may now ask themselves "What does it cost to hire someone to do this for me?" After some research around my area from smaller marketing firms to the "Big Guys", you may find yourself with a sticker shock. I know I had to ask myself, I offer my services on most bases as a courtesy, maybe I should start charging more! (Just kidding) Seriously, not trying to take business away from these folks or even myself, but you can do some of this yourself if you are just wanting to break into social media branding, however if you are really serious about it, email me for more information. Now if you want to shop for any kind of marketing or social media agency, here are some rates I found (averaged out) for particular services. Keep in mind I am located in a somewhat rural metropolitan area but within 50 miles of a large city.
Setup fees: $300.00 ot $1,00.00 Monthly content charges: $200.00 to $500.00 Blitz or Promotion Campaign. (Also known as short-term) $1,000 to $5,000.00. This usually includes integration with Twitter, FB ads, daily or weekly updates and it's packaged. Does not include your prize or giveaway if you are offering anything. Short term usually means 2 to 6 months. Expect higher rates from larger or major city firms.
So you like to have some video on a new YouTube
channel or Facebook site? Shoot, produce, and edit is usually offered as a
package. $300.00 to $10,000.00. That is for a 2 minute video with one camera
and basic graphics. Longer videos, two camera shoots or added production is
more. The big gap in prices is due to shopping marketing firms and actual
production houses who do nothing but video using professional broadcast
equipment. they did offer web videos. Rates quoted are for HD video, 1080.
Social Media as a Strategy
This is consulting, monitoring, keywords and analytics, measurement of results, and offering professional advice. The more keywords and analytics to measure the
higher the fees. Average fee is $2,000.00 with some marketing firms as high as $10,000.00 for an audit report with recommendations. If you were not using video, this can be your most expensive investment hiring a professional Social Media Marketing firm. You just need to ask yourself, "How bad do I want to see how Social Media is working for me? I have to say that most do not understand how the internal measurements work so for SMB's who have the money to invest in Social Media, this is a no brainer.
Social Media Training
If you just want to hire a professional consultant to train one or more of your staff to implement social media including making landing pages or do content management expect to pay $30.00 to as much as $100.00 per
hour for the privilege. Most will offer block timing of say 5 hours and negotiate a rate for you. Want a nice lunch and learn workshop? Expect to pay $500.00 to $1,000.00. Travel is extra. In conclusion, as stated these rates are from my area and I can safely say that if you live in a major city the rates are going to be as much as 20 to 30 % higher. For smaller businesses, these rates with the exception of maybe bringing a trainer on board are beyond their budgets. For larger SMBs it may make sense to have someone outside of their staff to do this for them at least for a minimum contact period. I do hope this helps. It was a bit of a surprise to me and glad I did the research. Email me with your comments or your experiences with consulting firms.