Posts tagged social media
3 Facebook Page Customizations ANYONE Can Make

In today's business culture, marketing can be costly. Social media has provided a means for free advertising if used effectively. To make sure you have a competitive edge, follow three easy steps for customizing your business' Facebook page.

PERSONALIZE YOUR VISUALS

One of the first things that people will see on your business Facebook page is your cover photo, so it is important to make it both visually appealing and portray the bottom line of your business. If you are not aesthetically inclined, you may try choosing a vague image that can be overlaid with some text, such as your company’s tagline.

Keep in mind that the size of the cover photo is 851px x 315px. If the image is any larger, Facebook will crop it. If you are looking for a way to resize your image, try using a free app for Mac called ResizeIt. If you are working in Windows, you can resize images in Paint.

As for your profile picture, I recommend sticking with your company logo. This is what people are going to see when you like a new page or leave a comment. The image specifications are a little more complicated for a profile picture. The image needs to be 180px x 180px but Facebook will crop it to 160px x 160px, so make sure you have some white space around your logo to keep it from being cropped.

Delegator Facebook Screenshot

CUSTOMIZE YOUR TABS

The next thing you want to do is customize your application tabs. Woobox.com has some great free options for doing this quickly. You can easily add a tab for Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest, and your blog.

Once you sign up for WooBox, it will prompt you to link your Facebook account. From here when you add things to WooBox, it will sync with your Facebook account. After you have added all the accounts you want, you should go back to Facebook and arrange your tabs. Keep in mind that you can only see three accounts in the main tab. Anything else you add will be hidden. You can swap your "Likes" tab and your "Maps" tab out for other accounts. The only one you can't move is the "Photos" tab.

Customized Facebook Tabs

PUMP UP YOUR CONTENT

Finally, it is important that your content is interesting and informative. Start with the summary under the profile picture. What does it portray about your business? This is a great spot to add a link to your website.

Next, make sure the About info, Basic info, and Contact info are filled out and up-to-date. This will make it easier for potential clients or customers to contact you. In order to keep users engaged, make sure you  post a couple times a week at a minimum. If you are looking for ideas of what you should post, consider your blog posts or tips for your customers.

How To: Automatically Publish Your Blog To Google+ Page

A few days back, Hootsuite announced the addition of Google+ support to their platform. Now, in addition to Facebook & Twitter, Hootsuite users can conveniently post to Google's widely loved, but rarely used social media network.

 

This is certainly handy, although not remarkable. However, with this new feature, Hootsuite has become a powerful tool for auto-posting blog posts, via an RSS feed, directly to Google+ (a feature many have desired for sometime). With the growing importance and weight of Google+ in the SEO/SEM world, it is more important than ever to populate your Google+ page with great content, especially from your website.

Here we will walk you though the steps for setting up the RSS-Google+ auto-importing:

  1. Connect your Hootsuite account to your Google+ page. This can be accomplished in a similar manner to the way you added Twitter & Facebook.
  2. In the left-hand sidebar, choose 'Settings' and 'RSS/Atom'.
  3. Choose the '+' button at the topadding an rss feed to hootsuite
  4. In the 'Add RSS/Atom Feed' panel, you'll fill out the form with the appropriate information, including your RSS feed address, the profile you'd like to publish to (in this case, Google+, possibly amongst others), how often to check the feed (I would recommend the most frequent option), how many posts to send (most likely '1 post at a time'), and which URL shortener you prefer.streaming your blog to google+ automatically
  5. Once you have your settings in place, click 'Save' and you're all done. Now you can conveniently publish your blog posts to Google+, reaping the benefits with virtually no additional hassle.
Facebook Announces Page Management Tools

This month, Facebook announced the activation of powerful tools that will allow you to better manage your professional pages. These features wipe out the necessity for third party applications to best control your pages. The two main feature additions include:

  • A scheduling function allowing administrators to preload posts into Facebook to be posted at a later time.
  • A new set of administration roles that give different levels of access to different users.

Scheduling:

This feature is represented by a small clock located at the bottom left of your status screen.  After clicking on the clock, you can pick the exact year, month, day, hour, and minute that a post will be published on your timeline. If you select a date in the past, your post will immediately appear in the timeline.

It is important to note that scheduled posts are only allowed once every 10 minutes. The minimum time allowed before a post is published is 10 minutes.  Another important element to keep in mind is that a scheduled post may not be deleted once posted; it can only be delayed.

Administrative Roles:

This new feature to Facebook allows for managers to assign different levels of administrative access to different individuals.  The various management titles and their level of access are highlighted below:

Delegator.com’s New Years Resolutions! (This time we’re really going to do it!)

1. This year, I will stop focusing on the numbers on the scale. I will stop focusing on keywords only when I write SEO content.

2. This year, I will do something active and physical every day. I will regularly add to and refresh the content of my site.

3. This year, I am finally going to get organized - my house, my office, and my life. I am finally going to start utilizing Google Analytics - to track and analyze my traffic, my users, and my conversion statistics.

4. This year, I will quit smoking once and for all. I will stop using Flash to create large or important sections of my website.

5. This year, I’m going to put myself out there and try to meet some new people. I’m going to kick my AdWords campaign into high gear, try some email marketing, and optimize my site every chance I get.

6. This year, I am going to start saving money. I am going to let professionals actively manage my AdWords account, and stop over-paying for keywords that are too competitive or that aren’t going to get me the customers I’m looking for.

7. This year, I am going to be on time wherever I go. I will use Google Calendars to give me reminders about important dates, deadlines and meetings.

8. This year, I am going to learn something new. I am going to try a different online marketing tactic to see if I can improve my results.

9. This year, I am going to indulge my artistic side. I’m going to create banners for my site and start using Display Networks to attract and re-target users.

10. This year, I am going to give some time or money to charity (This is one that should stay on the list). Check out Causeway.org if you need some ideas in the Chattanooga area!

The Top Ten Ways to Optimize Your Wordpress Blog and Make It More Powerful Than Ever - Part I

1. Top Ten Lists

You see what we did there? Top ten lists are enduringly popular. They present a lot of information in quick, easy to read bits, they give the reader a reason to keep reading, they show off expertise and a depth of knowledge, and they create arguments. And that’s what blogging is all about. Not many people know this, but the Ten Commandments are considered to be the very first blog post.

2. Infographics

In an increasingly visual society infographics are a fantastic way to draw the eye, impart information, and get your blog linked. A lot. Make it good, make it useful, make it colorful (literally and figuratively) and put it out there to get noticed.

3. Keyword-Rich, Compelling, Unique Headlines

This is an SEO recommendation combined with an interest-grabbing tactic. Most people read blogs in compressions (think Google Reader, RSS, etc.) and the headline is often the only chance you have to get them to read what you wrote. Moreover, headlines are a great way to get the attention of the google-bots crawling the internet looking for relevant, useful content. Make your headlines attention grabbers, but also fill them with keywords. For instance, “Optimize Wordpress Blog.” See what we did there?

4. Unique Content

For SEO purposes this is absolutely essential. Never take content from another source and present it as your own (unless you’re quoting), and don’t repeat yourself. The bots don’t like it. And you won’t like the bots when they’re angry. Besides, who wants to spend their time reading an un-orginal blog?

5. Reader Participation

Blogs need communities of readers to really thrive. And the best way to build that community is to engage with them. That doesn’t just mean good content, headlines and graphics. That means literally inviting them in, listening to their thoughts and airing their opinions. Keep and cultivate a vibrant comments section (don’t let it get abusive), post reader polls, ask questions, and post worthy thoughts on your main pages as blogs. Involve your readers and they’ll keep you in their life.

Check back in with us in the next few weeks, when we'll reveal the rest of the top 10 list. We want to give you some time to start working on the first five. See you then!

Mad Gravity Chooses Delegator.com to Manage Strategic Web Marketing Goals in 2011

Delegator.com Will Manage, Measure and Optimize Web Marketing for Yaptap.com

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. -- Delegator.com and Mad Gravity announced today that Delegator.com will provide web analytics, search engine optimization, paid search, display advertising, and social media consulting services to Yaptap.com, an enterprise group messaging application that helps organizations with group communication.

“Delegator is pleased to be working with the talented team at Mad Gravity,” said Stephen Culp, CEO of Delegator.com. “Like Delegator, Mad Gravity wears innovation on their sleeve, and understands that the best innovation is the kind that helps customers solve a problem or achieve a goal,” Culp added.  “Yaptap is just such an innovation, and Delegator looks forward to accelerating the growth of its customer base.”

“Yaptap will help a wide range of groups --from churches to schools to businesses-- to be more connected, more informed, and more productive,” said Andrew Scarbrough, Vice President at Delegator and Project Lead.  “Such a great product deserves great marketing, and Delegator is excited about the opportunities and potential of our partnership with Yaptap.”

To lead the effort, Delegator will manage, measure and optimize Mad Gravity’s web marketing strategy and execution.  Delegator will focus on creating quality content, white-hat search engine optimization, and creative pay-per-click advertising.  At the same time, Delegator and Yaptap will cater to Yaptap’s quickly expanding user base through improved performance and web analytics.

“We selected Delegator because we were impressed with the results they’ve been able to consistently achieve for their clients,” said Jeff Cole, Chief Marketing Officer, Mad Gravity. “We needed a top caliber interactive firm to extend our brand message and help drive sales. We believe there is no one better suited for the job.”

About Mad Gravity Mad Gravity developers of Yaptap –  the leading enterprise web and mobile group communications and messaging software, and Youth Assistant the leading youth ministry software solution for more than 10,000 churches across the U.S. and Canada.

About Delegator Delegator.com was born of necessity, as a growing company designed for growing companies.  Founded by a team of successful entrepreneurs, Delegator manages critical on-demand business services like SEO, PPC advertising, social media, local search, web development, video production, ecommerce and web analytics. Delegator’s mission is to help growing companies focus on their mission, and confidently delegate the rest.

Little Debbie Finds The Sweet Spot With Social Media

Yesterday the Social Media Alliance of Chattanooga hosted Emily Barnett, Social Media Coordinator for Little Debbie, to discuss the brand's strategy.  It's clear that the company values social media as an integral part of their marketing plan.  Emily, along with a team of four others, helps manage the Little Debbie brand on Twitter and Facebook. In less than two years, Little Debbie's Facebook page has gone from a few thousand fans to close to 1 Million.  As I'm writing this post, the page has 937,484 "Likes," and it seems likely that Little Debbie will reach their goal of having a 1 Millionth fan by the end of June.

I've listed some of the highlights from Emily's presentation in hopes that you or your business might be able to learn something from their success:

Engagement

Little Debbie does a great job of engaging their consumers.  Whether it's through contests, national promotions, or the content they create, the brand has had tremendous success getting their consumers to engage with them.  The social media team uses HolidayInsights.com to find holidays that they can tie in to their products.  Consumers also provide great ideas for content.  See this recent photo that was submitted for graduation season - "Swiss Roll Diplomas:"

Emily recommends allowing your Facebook fans to sign up for newsletters and your other social media channels from your Facebook page.  This will not only help you gain subscribers but will allow your audience to connect with you in their preferred platform.

It was interesting to hear that Little Debbie keeps all comments on their Facebook page, including the negative ones (unless they're offensive).  Companies need a policy in place to know how they'll handle both the good and the bad.  Emily explained Little Debbie has chosen to show the full spectrum of comments and the brand's openness to criticism and opinions.

Cross-Branding

Little Debbie recently decided to start partnering with other company Facebook pages.  The Little Debbie page showcases these partners in the Featured "Likes" section, and they occasionally may post something and tag the company in their wall post.

For example, Little Debbie partnered with the Bristol Motor Speedway for an event and gave away Little Debbie snacks to everyone in the crowd.  They then used social media to promote this partnership further and engage both their customers and fans along with those of the Speedway.

Outreach

Little Debbie has cultivated relationships with bloggers who can become advocates for the brand, Emily says.  The social media team at Little Debbie attends blogger conferences that relate to their target demographic and looks for ways to partner with bloggers across the country.

While Little Debbie is a national brand that has had major success with their social media strategy, small and large businesses alike can learn from their efforts.  As we can see with Little Debbie, it isn't about the hard sales pitch.  Instead we see how engagement, brand awareness, and outreach go a long way.

If you have any observations about what works for your business or what doesn't, I'd love to hear your feedback!  And if you attended the Social Media Alliance Luncheon yesterday and have other takeaways you'd like to share, please do!

How the Community Used Twitter During The Storms

The storms and tornadoes that passed through Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi and several other states on Wednesday created a path of destruction that is still hard to comprehend.  In some areas rescue efforts are still underway, and the cleanup and grieving for the loss of life is just beginning.

I’ve never seen anything like it. When the power went out Wednesday, the phone lines were down, and I couldn’t make any outgoing calls on my cell phone, I had one source of information.  I was constantly refreshing my Twitter stream on my phone to get the latest updates on the storm and following hashtags like #CHAwx.

Based on the tweets from our local Chattanooga reporters, The Weather Channel, and citizens reporting what they were seeing, I was getting real-time updates every second.  The fact that local news organizations (@WRCB, @NoogaNews, @newschannelnine and others) and their individual reporters embraced the hashtag, gave the community a place to follow and track what was happening as the news rolled in.  Since tens of thousands of us were without power (and still are), it was imperative that we were able to receive updates and communicate quickly what was happening.

Speaking of power, EPB (Electric Power Board) continues to do a great job of working as fast as they can around the clock to restore power, repair downed power lines, and remove trees.  After the first round of storms passed through, my grandmother called saying there were lines laying across her backyard.  She was having trouble getting calls through to EPB.  After I unsuccessfully tried calling, I noticed they were taking information on their Twitter page (@EPB_Chattanooga) and replying as best they could to people who were reporting lines down.

Once Thursday morning arrived, hashtags like #CHAhelp for the Chattanooga metro area and #CLEhelp for Cleveland, TN began carrying information about where volunteers and supplies were needed.  As the cleanup continues, I'm continuing to see updates today.  Thanks to the United Way (@UnitedWayChatt) I have been able to look at their web page of resources, requests, and needs that are being updated frequently.

If you know of other resources or needs in our area, please leave them in the comments below.  And if you used Twitter as a resource during the storms, I'd love to hear your story.

How to Run Your Own Blog

And lo, Delegator.com journeyed into the wilderness of the 156 million public blogs on the Internet, and returned to the people with commandments; and these commandments numbered 10.

I. Post early, post often, and keep posting.

The most important thing any blogger can do is to keep blogging. At first, you might get very little reader response. You might even (gasp) get none at all. But that’s no reason to panic! The only way you can create an engaged and communicative readership is by regularly updating your blog. People don’t congregate at or return to blogs that are infrequently or indifferently updated. It may be the last thing on your to do list, but it’s absolutely essential that you get it done. You might be talking to yourself at first, but if you keep talking and you actually have something to say, people will start to listen. Trust us.

II. Post early, post often, and keep posting.

This is by far the most important commandment. Brand it upon your brain.

III. Post early, post often, and keep posting.

We are willing to alienate and annoy you to ensure that you do not forget this commandment.

IV. Write what you know.

This is one of those true cliches about professional writing. As important as it is to novelists, journalists and script writers, it’s doubly important for bloggers. Bloggers don’t have to be single issue, but if they seek to gain a larger readership they need to be focused and expert. If you don’t understand a concept, link to it - don’t write about it. Your readers are coming to you for answers and/or entertainment, so write about things you know inside and out. Otherwise you risk losing credibility, respect for you or your companies ability, and worst of all, readers.

V. When readers have a strong response to a post, keep mining that vein of interest - hold their attention.

It’s in the best interest of a blog writer to be responsive to his or her readers. If you get a big response from a post of yours (even if you didn’t think it was that big a deal) listen to your readers. Keep posting about that same subject or in that same style (not exclusively, just regularly). The goal of a blog is to build readerships, transmit information, and connect with potential clients. When you touch a nerve, don’t be shy about pressing it.

VI. Create an editorial voice, and maintain it.

Even if your blog posts are being written by several different people and cover a few different areas of interest, keeping a clear editorial voice is important. It helps readers to feel they have a personal connection to the blog, and it makes your site distinctive and personal. Those are good things because they invite visits, correspondence, and a welcome sense of familiarity.

VII. Every once in a while, go off the cuff.

Having an editorial voice doesn’t mean you should speak in monotone. It’s good to give readers a few breaks from the serious work of digesting your thoughts and evaluating your advice. One of the most popular blogs on the internet, Andrew Sullivan’s The Daily Dish, posts more than 300 times a week. But many of those posts are funny or moving pictures, silly videos, and palate cleansers like a daily “Mental Health Break.” You should think about fun ways to engage with your audience that don’t always include teaching them something. Your blog doesn’t need to look like it was designed by Martha Stewart, but it is important to give it a professional, cared-for appearance. If it’s sloppy, ugly, or too plain, savvy readers pick up on it and take their jaded eyeballs elsewhere.

IX. Spellcheck is your best friend.

Try not to get caught making mistakes in the realm of spelling, fact-checking, and grammar. It takes away credibility, and makes you look small-time.

X. Link to sources, and make sure to be up front about where you got information.

Nothing gets you worse press in the blogosphere than not attributing your sources of information on your blog. Do right by them and they’ll do right by you. Do otherwise, and you could get in real trouble (of the punitive kind, if not the legal).

This Month in Social Media: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

A lot has happened this month in the world of social media, so read on for The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

The Good

First up, there have been some major milestones this March:

Twitter turned 5 years old, and March 21st marked the anniversary of the first tweet.  Since that day in 2006, Twitter’s numbers have been pretty impressive.

  • It took 3 years, 2 months, and 1 day from that first tweet to the billionth tweet on Twitter.  It now takes only 1 week for users to send a billion tweets.
  • There has been an average of 460,000 new accounts per day over the last month.
  • Over the last month, people sent an average of 140 million tweets per day

LinkedIn also hit a major milestone this month by surpassing 100 million members.  The company announced their success on the blog:

The Bad

Chrysler

Earlier this month, a tweet from Chrysler, via their social media agency, New Media Strategies (NMS), created the type of publicity the auto manufacturer wasn’t hoping for.  The NMS employee who sent the tweet, says he thought he was using his personal account when he sent the following:

Following the tweet, Chrysler issued a statement on their blog stating they do not tolerate inappropriate language, and within an hour, the NMS employee was fired.  Chrysler later annoucned they will not renew their contract with New Media Strategies.

The Ugly

Aflac

Comedian Gilbert Gottfried, the voice of the Aflac Duck, sent several offensive tweets following the Japanese Tsunami.  The insurance company was quick to act and fired Gottfried, issuing this statement:

"Gilbert's recent comments about the crisis in Japan were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac.  There is no place for anything but compassion and concern during these difficult times."

This month we’ve seen the good in social media, and how important it is for your business to have a presence on networks like LinkedIn and Twitter.  As these networks continue to grow, it is increasingly important for businesses to be utilizing these marketing tools as best they can.  Unfortunately, we've also seen the bad and the ugly this month, more of a guide on “what not to do.”  It's important to remember that social media is an extension of your company, your brand, and your other marketing efforts.  Make sure you have a solid social media strategy in place, whether you're managing your company's social media efforts in house or through another agency.  Your online marketing efforts should complement each other, get the results your working toward, and positively represent your company at all times.