Who Is Your Social Tribe?

Social Tribe

If you don’t understand who your social tribe is online, then your content efforts risk to fall on deaf ears. They are your cheerleaders, your focus groups all leading to your customers and sales! Grab a pen, a blank sheet of paper and brainstorm who you think your community is.

Who are your ‘Allies’?

These are your friends and family or even employees and suppliers. Firstly, never be shy to ask your inner circle for a leg up to get that community started. They should be happy to support you! Employees, sub-contractors, collaborators and suppliers are already a part of your business community. Cultivate two-way social support by reading their posts and following their profiles too.

Who are your ‘Peers’?

For small business, your industry colleagues are vital for growing your community. Gone are the days where competitors ‘play cards close to their chests’. Obviously, I don’t mean sharing sensitive business information but not being so afraid to collaboration and communicate about industry challenges and changes. Industry peers can support and inspire each other, especially online. Hunt them out, chat and bring them into your world.

Who are your ‘Advocates’?

Do you engage your most loyal customers? It’s a mistake many businesses make, by passing those in the fervent quest for new customers. But your existing loyal customers are advocates for your brand and their voices should be amplified. Have a strategy on how to reward them either with social reciprocation (mentions, follow Friday) or even discounts for shares. Modern online businesses offer kick-backs for digital recommendation,  make the tech work for you!

Who are your ‘Customers’?

All these help build a picture of your customer profile, the demographic most likely to make a purchase. Using the insights social media platforms make available to you (free of charge), find out when they’re online, which of your posts they’ve engaged with the most and what other companies they follow and engage with (easier on Twitter and Instagram, than Facebook).

Do you now have a picture of who your social media tribe is? 

Spending 30 minutes to 1 hour figuring out the above, will definitely trigger a few lightbulb moments for you what you want to say to your customers on social media.

light bulb moment

 

What Does Your Facebook Page Cover Photo Say About Your Business?

Social media branding is just as important as branding elsewhere in your business. But you’d be surprised the number of pages I come across where it’s not clear what the business proposition is or that it’s the exact business I’m looking for. What does your Facebook page cover say about your business?

Be Consistent

Use images with the same style and presentation as your website quickly helps customers make the association between your page and your brand. And of course optimise the size and make sure it complies with Facebook rules. The current Facebook page layout means the whole image appears like a banner at the top, so crop and position carefully.

Say Something

Your visual story is as important as the words on your page (if not more). What do you want customers to know first when they arrive on your page? The 20% text rule does not apply to cover pages but be aware, images with too much text or that are too salesy tend to put people off. Inspire your customers to say and find out more.

Be Strategic

Your logo should remain static (unless you’ve rebranded of course) but your cover image is an opportunity to showcase the latest focus for your business. Are you running an event? Or launched a new product or service? The cover image is the perfect location to place a powerful call to action.

Cover examples which work;

Amazon – they change their cover page to their current flagship promotion which aligns best with the Facebook audience. Pretty subtle but clever.

facebook page sample

Apple – of all the products they could feature from their amazing range, they chose this…makes you want to know more doesn’t it?

Gousto – can you guess what this company does from their name, logo and cover page? Pretty much.

facebook page cover

Puressentiel – this company have used the cover to feature their latest product launch.

facebook page cover

TOM’s – what does this image say to you? Casually hanging out in casual shoes…

facebook page cover

 

Twitter Training With Sky High Potential

aim high

I’m thrilled to be hosting a Twitter training with sky high potential at The Mumpreneurs Networking Club flagship networking event, MNC Live on 29th March 2017.

Using social media is a cost effective way to market your business, with Twitter being one of the easiest platforms to connect and grow audiences. We will learn how best to leverage the platform to reach more customers and then practice everything in a chat session from one of the best views in the UK.

Twitter was created to be the ‘text messaging’ of the Internet, which is why still today it’s one of the chattiest and most interactive platforms. It is also one of the primary platforms for businesses and brands, especially with the targeted ads functionality and the data it can provide about customers and their social media habits.

On the training you will learn;

  • Networking and building your community. Twitter is one of the easiest platforms to grow a following and raise awareness of your products and services. Get tips on how to get ‘social’ by tagging other users, understanding hashtags plus making the most of the chat hours.
  • How to best use all the functions. Even if you use Twitter regularly, it may be handy to have a recap on the purpose and messaging best practice.
  • What content works for your business. We will explore what text works best and how to capture and post images and video. We will understand what our audiences are likely to read and react to.
  • Customer relationship management. Learn how to turn those comments from customers on Twitter into powerful brand advocacy.
  • Measure your efforts. We’ll take a brief look at the data Twitter offers free to all users and what it tells you about your content and customers.
  • General social media content and networking tips which will work across other platforms.

The course content is packed with tips and inspiration for most levels with a chance to immediately try what you’ve learned while enjoying a breath taking experience – a flight on the British Airways i360.

In the same format as our popular #MNCHour Wednesday chat, we’ll ask delegates a thought-provoking question about their business goals plus set a mini challenge to post certain content while enjoying the view and networking with other passionate entrepreneurs.

I have also pulled together a team of social media savvy bloggers to be on hand to help, get a glimpse of how these prolific tweeters have mastered the platform.

At £85 for non-members and £70 for members, including your British Airways i360 flight, refreshments and a champagne lunch, this is a rare chance to learn important skills for your business, make valuable contacts, have fun and be inspired!

SO…what are you waiting for? Grab your ticket today before they go.

Take Part In An Instagram Challenge and WIN!

giveaway

Global Entrepreneurship Week kicks off on Monday and I’m proud to be supporting The Mumpreneurs Networking Club’s Pop Up Mumpreneurs Events, which celebrates the success and sheer awesomeness of mums who bring their entrepreneurial smarts to the global economy. And I’m giving the opportunity for one Instagram networker the opportunity to win 2 hours of training or strategy planning with me.

You don’t have to be uber social media savvy to enter either. Here’s what you need:

  1. Install Instagram on your phone, launch your profile
  2. Take a photo and post it on Instagram
  3. Add a caption and tag #GEWMums @welovemnc
  4. And good luck! You’re entered.

If you need a helping hand, download my quick and easy Instagram start up guide by registering here.

Pop Up Mumpreneurs 2016

There’s 28 brilliant events online and off which you are still able to join. Be inspired, learn new things and make new contacts in this positive, warm and supportive network. As Hilary Clinton said in her concession speech:

Twitter hour theme-3

On Wednesday 16th November at 8pm join us for an #MNCHour PARTY on Twitter! We want you to share an image of a defining moment from your business journey. AND we’ve set ourselves the challenge to have the most images shared by participants EVER since we launched the chat hour in April this year. For details on how to join and how to make the most of a Twitter chat or party, visit the event page.

The Mumpreneur Side Effect

Last week, journalists Eva Wiseman tried to dismiss many mum business as a side effect or poor maternity rights. Here’s my response over on BrightonMums.com about this awesome side effect and all the brilliant women business owners I have worked with – who just happen to be mums.

Giveaway terms: Closing date is midnight 18th November, 2016.

Sign up to receive my 7 steps plus be sent the Instagram quick and easy guide including a 7 day action plan.

 

 

Effectively Using Pinned Posts

In Facebook and Twitter you have the functionality to pin a post to the top of your profile’s feed. Which means anyone visiting your profile, page or group will see that message first. It’s a useful tool for promoting key messages for your business. But it’s essential you avoid overusing the tool or misusing.

A pinned post is effective when

You use multi-media

Carefully write the post, be succinct. Check you have included key information with a smart-looking link (shrunk or a customised Bitly link). Use a powerful and relevant image that will draw people in. Video could be even more effective.

You pin temporarily

Leaving the same link at the top of your feed can look a bit stale and uninviting. How likely are users going to delve into the rest of your feed if you haven’t changed the pinned post in over a month? The timescale is relevant to the content you’re highlighting in the post but even if you haven’t finished the promotion, consider changing the text or image slightly after two weeks. That way you capture new visitors without frustrating repeat visitors.

It has a clear purpose

Ask yourself what you want people to do after reading the post? Balance the promotional tone with a sentiment which still connects followers to the subject matter. Some types of posts are likely to work better than others, such as:

  • Announcements – tell visitors about your latest business development or news. Perhaps you won an award? Or have created a video from an event?
  • Promotions – broadcast a money-off promotion or other incentive.
  • Events – drive ticket sales on the run up to an event. Make sure customers find the event info and ticket sales link in as few steps as possible.
  • New products or services – capture more users by pinning a showcase post with details of new product lines or services.

What a pinned post should not be

A bio

Your ‘bio’ or ‘about’ section should contain key information about you and your business; what you do, how you help people; how to contact you and a link to your website. People know how to find this, so repeating it all in a pinned post isn’t really helpful and could indicate you have nothing else ‘new’ to say. Your feed is a chance to dazzle people with your latest activity or photos, so don’t block the engagement with a pinned post which contains a bio.

Forgotten about!

If you’re using a pinned post for a temporary campaign or sales promotion be sure to remember to remove when that period has expired. It looks as if you lack focus and commitment on your social media activity and therefore unprofessional.

Want to learn more? Sign up to my 60-day Social Media Boot Camp for small business for £1 a day. Modules featured in this post include: Facebook community building, creating and using short links with Bitly, optimising images and video for social media, targeting quality content.

Enrol Now

Want to learn more about managing your content and effectively engaging customers? Subscribe to my training bulletin and get a FREE copy of 7 steps to social media success.

Understanding Social Seasonality

Do you understand your business’ sales seasonality? Then you also need to understand your social media seasonality which may not necessarily follow the same pattern. Going to the trouble of posting messages when your customers are not on-line could end up being a huge waste of your valuable time.

August is dead. Most people are on enjoying the summer, taking a trip or socialising with friends during those lighter evenings. They may dip their toes in social media, perhaps sharing a few ‘I am fabulous’ travel snaps but generally, if you’re hoping for great engagement during this period be prepared to be disappointed.

Believe it or not, I have heard some social media managers struggle to manage their clients’ expectations around the summer dip in traffic. The availability of the tech on smartphones is often mistakenly interpreted as a marketing strategy to reach customers at all times, to maximise potential sales where other media channels may not offer the same exposure for a brand.

It’s not that people aren’t using their phones, nor social media, it’s the mindset which has shifted into ‘don’t sell to me, I’m on holiday’. Businesses need to develop a content strategy which retains customer loyalty but dials down the hard sell, while staying on message.

This kind of maintenance content strategy should be an integral part of the social media content cycle all year round. For most businesses summer will be a struggle to reach people but not all. Christmas can also be a challenge for some brands for example. Research competition brands social media activity, monitor your own social media analytics and keep monthly reports to capture those insights.

Understanding your social media seasonality is key to retaining audiences. It shows sensitivity towards your customer’s social media habits, which in turn should develop loyalty within your digital community. And a loyal community, is a powerful one.

 

Read This Before You Click Boost On A Facebook Post

We’ve enjoyed Facebook being free for the simple things in life; photo sharing, funny videos and communicating with friends. But someone has to pay for the service and that is advertisers. Facebook promotions, when done right, are good value for money for small business. It’s a great way to engage new, but niche, audiences with your business plus ensure your existing page followers see key promotions. But too many small businesses hit ‘boost’ without targeting their promotion to achieve the desired results. Before you make a knee-jerk move to promote on Facebook, take these steps:

Define your goals

I  probably sound like a stuck record, as this is a mantra I live by on social media. For better campaign results, always define your goals first. In the case of a boosted post (or perhaps a Facebook advert) what is your primary aim? Web traffic, ticket sales, growing social audience? Before you hit the ‘boost’ button evaluate whether a Facebook advert is more appropriate for reaching your goals. Boosts are usually effective for growing the audience of a particular promotion or piece of news, rather than promoting your page or website.

Use quality text and images

Ensure your message is clear plus has all the key information with no grammatical errors. Select a quality, relevant image; remember this is likely to be the strongest connection with the audience and ensure they read and click. Optimise the image for Facebook, remember that ad sizes are different to feed post images.

Target carefully to your desired audience

Facebook will ask you to refine the targeting by age, gender and location. Be wary of the latter, as it relies on people setting their location to where they really live. If your promotion is location dependent, you may want to consider including a wide mile radius around the most populated area within that area. The same applies to ‘interests’, many of these are still driven by U.S. users, so may not have many engaged U.K. users within that community. Also consider, if you have a fan base over 500, that promoting to your existing fans and their friends may be enough to get good engagement results and business leads.

Don’t blow the budget

A small business came to me for advice last month. They were spending £100 a week on boosted posts and while they were getting fantastic viral reach, the engagement (clicks, likes, shares, comments) was poor. Plus they weren’t tracking how many leads were being generated from the campaign. Therefore, there was no way of knowing if they could spend half that amount, target better and achieve the same return on investment. Apportion 20% of your campaign budget for a couple of days testing the boost.

Monitor, refine, monitor, refine

After selecting your perimeters, Facebook will give you an estimated reach which should tell you how many may see the advert but that does not necessarily mean they will engage with it. It’s key to monitor activity during the first 24 hours, after which refine the targeting if you’re not achieving the desired results. You know your customers and audience best, so invest a little time in small, cheap promotions to test your campaigns. You can grow your activity from there – with confidence too!

Want to learn more? Sign up to my mailing list and be first in line for places on my on-line training dates. Or book a mentoring session with me for a bespoke approach to your business goals. Let me fill in your knowledge gaps and reduce the overwhelm. Contact hello@claritaco.co.uk for more on how I can help you today.

Spellcheck For Content Success

Are you wondering why your social media posts aren’t getting the engagement you think they deserve? It could be as simple as checking spelling, grammar and syntax.

The internet is rife with poor use of written language. It doesn’t particularly matter when it’s our mates posting hurriedly from their phone with a few typos but when a business posts messages riddled with errors it has a different impact.

2016-04-25 18.52.24-1As a business, you’re engaging with people using social media to influence them into buying your product or use your service. Therefore the reader is only likely to react, comment or share your post if they feel what you are saying is of value or interest.

In order to do that, a business needs to stand out with their messaging. But there’s little use in having amazing campaign creative or beautiful images if the accompanying commentary is poorly written.  Here’s why:

1. It looks unprofessional. Why would someone invest their hard-earned cash on your service or product when you can’t spell or post live without correcting finger slips on the keyboard. On Facebook there’s no excuse, you can go back and edit. On Twitter you can delete the message and repost. But even then you could be penalised by their algorithm for posting duplicate content.

2. It’s a waste of time for the reader. While skimming their feed, people are unlikely to stop and spend time trying to decipher a misplaced apostrophe or misspelled word. They’ll skip reading and move on to something which pulls them in more fluidly.

3. It looks like you don’t care. If can’t make the effort to make sure your messages read well, then it could come across as not caring about your customers. So why would they bother with you?

4. It’s not shareable content. People are highly unlikely to share posts with poor grammar with their followers as it equally looks bad for them.

It’s all avoidable. When mentoring clients, we work together to find a process for producing content which works for them. Planning ahead is key: pre-write posts for the week or month then check them after you’ve finished the content and check again before pressing ‘publish’.

I believe EVERY business can produce engaging flawless content. Sign up to my newsletter for details of forthcoming training courses and content workshops.

How To Get The Most From Twitter Chat Hours

There’s nothing more than I love than joining a Twitter chat hour. They are fabulous for meeting new followers, promoting your business plus sharing tips and experiences with peers. But there is an unspoken etiquette, so here’s my tips for getting the most out of the hour:

twitter-iconSay hello! This is ‘social’ media, so be social. Start the hour off as you would any gathering by greeting the group and asking how everyone’s week has been or how they are feeling.

Tag the organiser early on. It’s good manners to greet the organiser or moderator of the chat. Usually local hours e.g. #MNCHour is run by @mumpreneursclub so include the latter in your introduction or greeting tweet.

Use the hashtag in every message. The tags allow people to follow the conversation but also some organisers gather tweets at the end using publishing platforms such as Storify.

Introduce yourself. Tell people how your business helps people. Try to keep this to one tweet.

Don’t schedule a message to spam the chat hour. The point of the chat hour is to converse. If you’re using a scheduler, you’re most likely not ‘there’ and it will show. However, it can be useful to schedule an early tweet to remind yourself you were going to join. But make sure it’s the ‘hello everyone, how are you’ style of message.

Follow those who taking part. Try and follow everyone unless they are largely irrelevant to your networking. It’s good manners and forms good connections for future networking  with Twitter.

Stick to the format. If the moderator has questions planned, do your best to answer those. Don’t go too far off piste or randomly promote yourself in the middle of the session.

Be patient. Some people take a bit of time to reply, there’s a bit of a delay while reading feeds and monitoring the conversation. Don’t jump in too quickly with questions before people have had a chance to respond.

Try not to be too salesy. By all means be clear about your business and what you offer but don’t lay it on too thick. One or two tweets promoting yourself then spending time chatting. If the conversation naturally revolves around your expertise then obviously run with it.

Make a list. Create a Twitter list for those who took part or subscribe to the organiser’s list.

Watch your spelling and grammar. The odd typo would be forgiven during a hasty Twitter interchange but try to avoid altogether if you can. It looks unprofessional and most of all, could detract from the meaning of your message.

Prepare a few images or 30 second vids to share. Multimedia flies on Twitter, so have a few to hand ready for your networking. It increases the impact of your message long after the hour has ended.

Be transparent about Twitter chat clashes. There’s nothing wrong in two-timing your chat hours but perhaps declare at the start, so people know if there’s a delay to a question they’ve directly asked you.

Have fun! As well the opportunity to network, crack a few light jokes and be positive. And it should go without saying to be respectful and don’t swear. If you’re not sure about how a message you’re writing will be received, then don’t post.

Do you have any other tips for people taking part in a Twitter chat hour? Post a comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Working Successfully With Bloggers

Collaborating with bloggers is an excellent way to market a business by tapping into their traffic and community. But investing your time and money with the right bloggers requires a good understanding of how influencing works plus careful relationship management.

Bloggers hold a powerful position in the digital world. When I started my first blog, 7 years ago now, snagging my .com domain name as well as a .co.uk address, I could see how strong blogger voices were becoming. We were forming cohesive communities built on personal experience, free opinions and a raw style which readers connect to over standard journalism.

The landscape for bloggers has changed dramatically over the past 7 years. PR agencies and brands are queuing up to offer lucrative promotional opportunities to the top digital influencers. Bloggers are being sent on worldwide holidays, have agents and top bloggers in their field are paid anything from £250 upwards for a post. Top video bloggers, often known as ‘YouTubers’, are invited to red carpet affairs and panel shows. It’s a ‘real job’ now, where the blogger is in charge of their editorial and direction, each one a mini-publisher.

There is a huge collaboration opportunity bloggers for small business, however, especially start ups offering a unique product or service proposition. Although these superstar pro-bloggers are demanding high fees, it’s still possible to work with mid-range niche social media influencers which could deliver a significant return on campaign investment.

While investing in a few sponsored posts with bloggers could enhance a campaign and provide plenty of social buzz, plus cheaper than paid social with Facebook and Twitter, some bloggers will collaborate on reviews with a fee if the proposition matches their blog purpose.

Bloggers also appreciate collaborating with agencies and companies who understand their process and value. Relationship management is key. They’re a talkative bunch and one wrong move running a campaign risks to spread warning signals out to the community as a whole. Some are managing blogs around family and day jobs, they don’t have time for lengthy projects where it’s unclear what the return is for their work.

And it is work. Many, many PRs make the mistake of assuming it’s a hobby and bloggers will write for free. But these bloggers are putting in their tax returns like every other self-employed person. If you get the campaign right, you’ll cultivate strong relationships which continue to grow as their influence grows.

Running an outreach campaign may not be as costly as you think. I have worked with a range of influential bloggers, cultivating productive relationships. Contact me to discuss your marketing needs and I’ll match you with the right people. 01273 381518 hello@claritaco.co.uk