Be Social

It is always interesting to see how other countries use the social networks that we have sort of become dependent on these days. Facebook is a dominant force but it is interesting to see some of the other networks stand up against the giant we call — FB.

Check out this Mashable infographic created by @nick_sigler  and @stephmbuck which showcases the worlds social network usage numbers.

Worlds Social Networks

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Whoa! Buried inside the fan page dashboard sits this little gem called The Best Practice Guide for Marketing on Facebook. It is loaded with great info for those of you trying to figure out your own Facebook marketing strategy. The guide is 14 pages long and filled with great info on how to tackle the beast we all call, the Facebook (minus the “the”).

For example, Facebook discusses it’s ecosystem which consists of:

  • Build
  • Engage
  • Amplify

Screenshot

This is just a sample of what you can find in this little document. Check out the Facebook Marketing Guide to learn all the little fun little pieces of information to execute your Facebook marketing efforts efficiently.

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Linkedin Tips

Social media is not just something that is planning on sticking around for a little bit with the plans of eventually moving on. Sites like LinkedIn, Facebook & Twitter have completely changed the landscape of digital communication — forever. With LinkedIn going public recently it is even a stronger indicator of just how important it is to use this networking giant to grow as an individual and even a business. Sure, things will take time like anything else but if you don’t want to make the time you might just be shooting yourself in the foot.

Here are some ways you can really increase your online influence in LinkedIn and have it start working for you in a positive light:

Fill in your profile 100%

Don’t just add your name without anything else because that is useless and a waste of time. Remember that this thing will rank very well for your name in the search engines so you want that profile robust and full of information that can help you grow as a person or a business. If someone searches your name and they bump into a LinkedIn profile that is completely empty that is not going to strengthen their case to want to work with you.

Use a quality image

Using a good quality image is extremely important for many obvious reasons. Unfortunately people do judge a book by its cover so it is important to use a quality image that allows you to market yourself. Nobody cares to see a photo of you doing a keg-stand or snuggling with your cats. Save those for your friends on Facebook if you absolutely must showcase them.

Send thank you messages to new connections

For quite some time now I have been sending short quick thank you messages to anyone who wants to make a connection with me. I can’t begin to tell you how many great conversations this tiny little effort has sprung up. It is a great way to break the ice and introduce yourself to someone who wants to have a professional connection with you on LinkedIn.

Join some targeted groups

There is an immense amount of targeted groups anyone can join on LinkedIn. Some of these groups have over 100,000 members and most groups allow you to place a link into their news feed that has the potential to be seen by thousands of qualified eyeballs. A great strategy is to take a blog post your business has written and distribute it through some of the groups on a consistent basis.

Get on people’s radars

Being social is all about trying to communicate along with being a team player when it comes to social media. This means leaving comments on a competitors posts, liking others submissions and generally doing things that leave behind some sort of connection between you and the community. This lets the original owner of the post know that you enjoyed what they have to say and it gets you on their radar screen.

Facebook Fan Page Dissection

Many business owners who have never depended on the digital space to attract new business have found themselves in an unfamiliar territory in recent years. With a rather large portion of off line marketing disappearing and shifting towards a new digital marketing era sites like Facebook have left them scratching their heads on what to do next. The media has flooded the web space with Facebook headlines causing website owners to realize that they need to be there but not necessarily understand how to do it properly.

Here are some of the different elements that are important when building a Facebook fan page:

The Logo

Always make sure your logo renders correctly. There is nothing worse for building your brand than placing logos that do not appear correctly on the fan page.

Facebook Logo Rendering

Photos

You always want to take advantage of your photo section within your Facebook fan page. This is a nice area where you can actually customize your photos or pull some images from your website to build the attractiveness  of your FB page. Some people even take a very creative spin on how to fill this image section.

Facebook Images

Custom Page

A custom landing page is a great way to set yourself apart from your competition. Many businesses large and small are really focusing on custom Facebook landing pages to help really brand themselves in a new light when it comes to how their audience perceives them. Some experts say that dropping visitors directly on your wall is “bad” but it really depends on what your goals are with your page.

Custom Facebook Fan Page

The “Like” Button

This is probably the holy grail of the Facebook fan page. The goal is to get as many fans to “like” your page in order to get your status updates to appear in their wall stream.

Facebook Like Button

Facebook Fan Page Mistakes

Brands don’t mean to make mistakes they just do and some mistakes can cause serious damage to a brand if not corrected quickly. With social media being such a powerful driving force in today’s business world it comes with a learning curve especially if you have a large global brand. One wrong status update can cause irreparable damages that can linger for years to come.

Facebook is no exception to this rule and you need to have a certain amount of respect for its power.  There is a reason why some people have millions of followers on their fan pages and those reasons need to be acknowledged.

Here are 10 ways to hurt your brand on Facebook:

Underdeveloped Fan Page

Facebook fan pages have grown quite a bit from what they once were. They now have many options for information that a brand or company can fill out. Make sure you fill out all the fields available to your brand so that it is nice an optimized for your users.

No Status Updates

The fan page is there for a reason, for you to use it! Posting updates once per/month is not going to help you build your brand on Facebook. Actually it will most likely hurt you quite a bit if you have no updates and you are a larger brand. Studies have shown that people make many judgement calls when it comes how a business interacts on their Facebook fan page.

Not Sharing Other’s Content

It takes a special kind of mindset to help your competition in the social space but remember that social media and Facebook is all about sharing content. You might not like it but your Facebook fans will and pleasing your audience is what it’s all about.

Forgetting To Promote Your Fan Page

Don’t forget to share your company Facebook fan page with others. Put it on your website, in your newsletter and on your blog to get others connecting with your brand.

Zero Engagement for Conversation

If people leave comments on your updates make sure to get back in there and respond back to them. Facebook is all about communication so if someone wants to communicate with your brand take the time to respond back to them.

Don’t Even Think about Mass Friend Connections

Don’t hunt around for those bogus products that promise 1,000,000 new Facebook fans by the end of the month. These services will do nothing more than just get your account banned. You want fans that truly want to be there and hear what you have to say.

Default Wall Settings

Think about the default page your visitors are landing on, whether it is a custom Facebook design or just the content wall think about your goals. There is no right or wrong setting to have it on it just depends on what you want your audience to see first.

Poor Logo Design

Make sure you always use a logo that renders 100%. If it is too small and needs to be stretched out to fit it will hurt your company image. Have your designer put together a nice logo that renders and fits properly in the logo space.

No Album Images

Each fan page has the ability to build out some nice photo albums. Use the photo albums to your advantage as best as you can. If you don’t have images take photos of the office and employees.

No Link!

Always, always, always leave a link behind where people can easily connect directly with your website. The worst thing that can happen is to make users have to either search for your website or hunt for a link. Don’t make anyone hunt, leave it right there for them to use.

Twitter is an amazing place to market your business but the truth is that you have to be very smart about it. Twitter is not messing around anymore and if they catch you spamming their wonderful tool they will give you the boot. Sure their servers might be down every other day but that doesn’t mean that they don’t want a clean playing field when it comes to how users interact with each other. The second they turn their back and let their guard down could cause a disaster in the media and the minds of their users. To learn more visit the Twitter help center.

How many people can I follow on Twitter?

You can follow up to 2,000 people at a time. After that there is a ratio that needs to be present between you following and others following you. If you get too aggressive with your following you will ping a red flag over at Twitter so be careful at all times.

“The rules about aggressive following and follow churn still apply. In addition, every user can follow 2000 people total. Once you’ve followed 2000 users, there are limits to the number of additional users you can follow: this limit is different for every user and is based on your ratio of followers to following. When you hit this limit, we’ll tell you by showing an error message in your browser. You’ll need to wait until you have more followers in order to follow more users—basically, you can’t follow 10,000 people if only 100 people follow you. When you reach a daily or total limit and we show you an error message, you’ve hit a technical limit imposed to limit egregious behavior by spam accounts and to prevent strain on the site. These are just the technical limits for your account; in addition, you are prohibited from aggressive following behaviors. These behaviors may result in account suspension, regardless of your account’s technical ratio.”

Can I get in trouble for using a third party software program to follow people?

Yes! Twitter frowns upon any outside technology being used to increase your followers. With that said many of the companies are still in business so it doesn’t look like they have been shut down. Even the search results do not show too many others being kicked off yet. If you are going to use software to help you be safe and smart about how you use it. Don’t follow 1,000 people every day because obviously that will raise a red flag. Follow a small amount and vary the amounts each day and leave sometime between follows so it looks a bit more natural.

“When you give out your username and password to another site or application, you are giving control of your account to someone else. They may then post duplicated, spam, or malicious updates and links, send unwanted direct messages, aggressively follow, or violate other Twitter rules with your account. When these applications do add followers to your account, they are often abandoned or bot accounts that are not reading your updates. If a third-party application causes your account to violate the Twitter Rules, your account may be suspended.”

Take the time to learn the rules so you don’t fall prey to a suspended account over time. Twitter is an amazing place to leverage and use to your advantage but you have to be smart about how you conduct yourself. The last thing you want to happen is have your account suspended after building it up for some time because may times Twitter will not turn it back on.

This is a really neat new little feature that Twitter will be rolling out very soon. A definite way to spread more Twitter wealth and branding through the vast pages of the web by being able to quote Twitter tweets. Twitter has announced that embeddable tweets will now be rolled out for all bloggers and other websites to be able to use when writing blog posts. With all the fun stuff happening at websites like Facebook with the new like buttons being spread across the internet Twitter needed to come up with something like this very soon just to simply keep up with everything going social.

Once embedded they will look something like this:

Twitter Embedded Tweets

Personally I think this is a great step for Twitter to pull in some more exposure for their site. It will get people navigating around various Twitter accounts and quoting industry sources in a whole new way. It seems like the goal for most websites right now is to get the community really using the tools on other websites which is a smart move for these communication giants. When this finally does roll out I think it will be an awesome way to spread the word and message those are trying to convey on Twitter.

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