Category Archives: twitter

Additional benefits of social media

Good Afternoon, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

There are many good reasons why businesses should be using social media, these are the standard…

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Engage customers
  • Build relationships
  • Increase sales
  • Build trust
  • Get ideas
  • Listen to customers

However there are also some others that are not mentioned quite as much….

Brand Protection

People are chatting about your brand/business/service saying OMG I had the most awful experience and would never go again etc.  You can listen to this and help change their perceptions (and others with it).  By listening to customers via sites such as Social Mention or Addict-o-matic or even just using Google/Bing or Yahoo you can find out what is being said,  is it good, bad or indifferent?  You can jump in and nip complaints in the bud before they get out of hand, and therefore protect your brand.

Market Intelligence

Use the tools I mentioned above to see what your competitors are doing, what is working for them?  When are they doing it?  How are they doing it?  What are they using?  How often are they using it?  Try to find out where the gap in the market is that you can jump into.

Customer Service

There are already a number of companies using Twitter (mostly) for customer service, eg Best Buy, Telstra and Cisco to name a few.  There are also many Facebook pages using it as a customer service tool with people monitoring the pages continually.

Barrier to Entry

By building up a following for your business/brand/service/product you can create an effective barrier to entry that money can’t buy.  Companies cannot buy trust and loyalty very easily, so for small businesses this can set you apart from larger competitors and effectively prevent others from entering your space.

Retention and cross-sell

This is similar to the selling angle that often gets discussed, but instead of selling products to new customers try to sell different products to existing customers.  They already trust you, have a relationship with you, so it should be easier….

Recruitment

IBM used a gaming video to teach people about business process management, they made it fun, and by doing so changed the perception of IBM with uni graduates, so that they now want to join IBM.  Here IBM changed the company perception and educated customers in a fun way.  People who love what the company is doing will want to join, so they find you rather than you finding them!

Younger generation appeal

Similar in the way that social media  repositions a business’ reputation as a fun, innovative place to work it can also widen the appeal of the businesses products and services.  Coach bags in the USA crowdsourced bag designs because they wanted to appeal to the 14- 24 age group.  Through social media they did this and so repositioned the brand in consumers eyes as appealing to them rather than something my grandma uses!

Staff Engagement

This is something I have experienced in my business where the team pull together to represent the business to customers.  They like to be involved, particularly those who are not usually on the front line because a) they feel valued and b) they feel that they are making a difference.

All of these reasons are even more reason for your business to get involved.  No longer is promoting your business about who shouts the loudest, instead it is about who is creative, innovative, up with the times and are playing where their audience are.

What do you think?  Are there any other benefits that you are experiencing that I haven’t mentioned?  Let me know in the comments below or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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Before your start on Social Media

Good Evening, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

Today’s blog will be filled with furry words of advice to help you have a fantastic social media campaign.  It’s all very much common sense, but often (this Bunny included) we get carried away with the excitement and addictiveness of Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn/Foursquare etc that we forget to start at the beginning.  DON”T WORRY!  It’s not to late.

You want to use a social network for business, your business, it might be a hair salon, real estate office, coffee shop, accounting firm, clothes store, product or whatever, the rules are the same for EVERYONE.  So you have decided which social networking tool or tools you want to use, now follow these steps;

  1. What is the purpose of what you are doing? For your Facebook page what is the purpose?  Why are you setting it up (because it’s fun doesn’t count), I want real reasons, eg to build a relationship with my audience, to use it to find out more about them, to get my product awareness out to a wider audience etc – get the picture?  This is the same if you are choosing Twitter or LinkedIn you NEED a purpose, if you don’t have one, well it just won’t work as well, and you will find it harder to maintain.
  2. What are your goals? Eg for your Facebook page you want to get 500 likers in the first month and increase the click throughs to your website by x%.  For Twitter it maybe that you want to be retweeted x number of times and gain x number of followers in the first month.  Whatever you decide that your goals are these are something that you can go back to and see how you are tracking and decide if it’s working.
  3. What have you got to offer?  OR What value are you adding?  OR Why should people follow you/connect with you or like you? This is the old “what’s in it for me”.  This should interlink with your purpose, so if your purpose is to “be seen as an expert in social media” the value you add could be in unravelling the mysteries behind social media, helping people to understand it and use it to grow their business.
  4. What are you going to promise? I have said this before that your followers etc have memories like elephants – they never forget.  So if you entice them to your Facebook page with the offer of free ebooks or the chance to win prizes or a daily tip, when they don’t get it they WILL rebel.  Rebelling in the social networking world means de-friending/unfollowing/disconnecting, which when you have worked SO hard to get them is not what you want.

The idea behind following these steps is that when you get stuck and think “oh no what shall I blog about, post, tweet etc.” you know what your purpose, values and goals are so it makes it easier for you to deliver.  PLUS it helps with the consistency of your message, if people know you as a social media expert, then you suddenly start rambling on about how to make apple tart, it’s kinda confusing…  They won’t know what’s happening, they will lose a bit of trust and faith, who is this flaky person that yesterday was telling us how to get more likers on Facebook and now is talking about how to get the pastry just right on an apple tart…..

If you already have your social networking set up, it is NEVER too late to go back and revisit what you are doing and why, and don’t think you have to stay with what you decide forever.  However don’t change your mind daily, but often it can take a while to find your niche that both you and your readers are comfortable with, so by all means try out a few things, but let them know.  For example, when I decided to start Mental Monday’s on this blog to review books, I said that I would see how it goes, but I am not doing it daily, only once a week.  So if say 50% of you guys don’t like it I guess you don’t tune in on Monday’s, but no one has complained yet!  But if you want to make a comment do, I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVE comments positive and negative.

Tell me below what you think or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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One way to find out what social networks your contacts are on…

Good Evening, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

I think that deep down everyone is a bit nosy… they like to see what other people are up to.  This new website http://www.Flowtown.com lets you find out what social networks your contacts are using/registered on.  But why do you want to know that?

  • To copy what they are doing because you admire them
  • To know how to contact them
  • To know where to NOT go to avoid them
  • To connect with them

I signed for a free 5 day account with Flowtown this week to see what it was all about, as yes I was curious, what were my contacts up to…  With the free account you can upload up to 50 contacts (they don’t tell you this in the FAQs, to be honest there isn’t much info at all on the site – if you are reading this Flowtown you should fix it up otherwise you will lose potential customers).

I uploaded my 800 odd contacts from Outlook (downloaded them to a CSV file then uploaded them), all you need is the email address for each contact.  However you need to bear in mind that the email address you have may NOT be the email address that they use to access social networks.  For example if you know someone professionally and have their work email address, they may also have a gmail address that they use for social networking – this isn’t fool proof, and again Flowtown don’t mention this.

Basically how it works is that Flowtown checks the email address with the various social networks (no I don’t know which ones, they don’t say – seeing a theme here yet?).  Then reports back a list of what each person is connected to.  Below is the dashboard you get after you have imported your contacts.

Note: I have covered up my contacts email addresses, just in case!

As you can see above it doesn’t look as if many of my contacts are using social media and yet I know that they are – this is when the email address is different.  You can also see their Twitter influence by Klout in the little white boxes on the right, this is basically how active they are on Twitter, how many people follow them, Klout’s definition is the “ability to drive people to action”…. 15 minutes later after playing on Klout, I have decided I will write a blog post on this later, it’s fascinating!

Back to Flowtown, you can look at your contacts with the insights tool, see below, so I can see of the 37 contacts who imported properly (some didn’t make it!) 10% are on Facebook, 14% are on LinkedIn etc.  I can also see the age of my contacts, gender and location.

Well my overall thoughts on this are… it’s sounds cool and funky, and fun to play with, but in reality might not be quite so useful, it gives you a chance to stickybeak (that’s Aussie for being nosy) into what your friends/colleagues/contacts are on, but only IF you have the right email from them.  To give an example, I use mostly the one email address, but it depends on the network, what it’s for and how I am using it.  So buyer be aware!

Just so you know if you want to import more contacts after your first 50 it costs from 4c a contact, plus a monthly fee.  You can use it set up autoresponders connected to Twitter and Emails, but why bother?  There are a lot of better tools out there to use.

On a final note I typed in my own email address, only to find out that I am male, aged 18-24 and living in Australia.  I guess one out of 3 isn’t bad, but I wouldn’t recommend trusting it for business!

If you’ve used Flowtown tell me how it’s worked for you below or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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9 ways to Share to Grow

Good Evening, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

Firstly, an apology for all my avid daily readers, yesterday just completely ran away with me and I didn’t blog, so to make up for it, I will blog twice today 🙂

Today’s topic Share to Grow encompasses all that social media is about, the sharing of ideas, value, results, helping others without expecting a return and growing your business based on the fact that people trust you and love what you are doing.

How you can share to grow:

    1. Write a blog post in your area of interest/expertise and post it on your Facebook page, on Twitter, on LinkedIn etc.  Add it to http://www.ezinearticles.com have it on your website, share what you know with others, believe me it works!
    2. Write a whitepaper (whitepaper’s are basically pdf documents on a topic, usually a few pages long) on your area/passion and give it to people through social media, again it positions you as an expert and allows you to get your brand out there
    3. Create a short video and share it on YouTube/Facebook/Twitter, this doesn’t have to be super high tech, you can see what we do on Social Rabbit TV.  If it’s amusing and/or useful it will go viral spreading the word about your business
    4. If you have done a presentation recently, as I did today, then create yourself a free Slideshare account and upload it.  The presentation I did on using social media for B2B is now up on Slideshare.  If you look around Slideshare you will see that the presentations are sometimes a few slides and sometimes lots, so you just say what you want to and then put your branding on it, just try to make it topical
    5. Use the answers section in LinkedIn (click on the more button on the top navigation to get to it), answer questions from people in your areas of expertise, you will find that you will quickly grow your network and opportunities will start to come your way
    6. Read other people’s blogs and make comments – not just a cool thanks comment, but adding value, it could be an example of when you have seen that working, or asking for more clarification, if you add value feel free to put a link back to your site/blog at the bottom
    7. Write up a case study of your successes with social media/or other topics, tell the world, don’t be modest.  There are lots of doubters on social media out there looking for ideas and suggestions, so tell them what results you can get.  Plus it helps others when they are writing presentations.  For the B2B preso I did today I struggled to find case studies that actually gave results – a lot of people do not share well.  The case studies can be used when responding to blogs, answering questions on LinkedIn, posted on your blog, tweeted out, posted on slideshare and will get you a lot of exposure
    8. If you are using Twitter regularly search on hash-tags that are relevant to your business, and then respond to comments, eg I sent a tweet asking about venues in Brisbane for the events next week, I got a response from a conference centre asking if I needed any help – I liked that
    9. If networking groups are looking for someone to talk on an area you are an expert in volunteer (it’s highly unlikely you will get paid), but it is good exposure for your business, and again positions you as an expert and you can share your knowledge with others.  Don’t forget you can approach them as well.

    The moral to this story is put yourself out there, you are an expert (in something) so show people.  Opportunities do not very often just land in your lap, instead you have to put the work in for them to fall.

    I’d love to hear of any successes you have had sharing with others, please tell me in the comments or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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      Filed under Blogging, Facebook fan pages, facebook page, linkedin, Small business, social media, twitter

      Keywords are important in social media too

      Good Morning, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

      Everyone talks about keywords in relation to websites, social media and social networks.  What are keywords?  For the newbies out there… Keywords are basically the words that people use when they are searching for something on internet search engines (eg Google.com).  So if I was searching for a hairdresser in Mosman (where I live) I might put in: hairdresser Mosman, or Mosman hairdresser.  For a hairdresser in Mosman these would be “keywords” for them.

      Google and other search engines, when they get a request will search websites for keywords that match what the searcher has put in, therefore the better the match the further up the page your site will appear in the results.  This is why when you have a website it is important that you include keywords in the text on your site as it helps with SEO (search engine optimisation).

      The same SEO on websites is used for social networking sites, eg Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc.  It is therefore important that you know what your keywords are and more importantly include them on your profile/page.

      To find out what your keywords should be there are two options:
      1) Put yourself in your customers shoes and say if I was looking for my product or service what would I search under?
      2) Use the Google keyword tool! (note: this isn’t the only tool out there, it is just the one I use)

      So once you have your list of keywords, it may be long….  You can see how popular a certain keyword is, and therefore if you include that keyword, you will be up against a lot of competition to get ranked highly on the search results – that doesn’t mean don’t include it!  It just means do not just include the top one on the list and think – Yeah I’m done!  Below is an example of the top 10 most popular keywords I have identified for Social Rabbit.  You can see that 1680 million searches are done per month on the term Facebook, so in reality I need to do more than just include Facebook in my text.  You will be able to see local (your country) and global search which is helpful if you only offer your porduct or service locally, plus the advertiser competition if you are looking at advertising – the closer to 1 the higher the competition.  Another point to note is that people make typos when searching – that doesn’t mean you include typos on purpose, as often search engines will correct the typos by saying “did you mean…”

      Keywords Advertiser Competition Local Search Volume: March Global Monthly Search Volume
      facebook 1 37200000 1680000000
      social media 1 49500 1220000
      facebook page 0.93 -1 1000000
      facebook help 0.8 -1 74000
      facebook create a page 0 -1 40500
      social media business 0.73 -1 33100
      facebook class 0.4 -1 27100
      facebook page business 0 -1 22200
      facebook sydney 0.4 -1 18100
      facebook com a 0.53 -1 18100

      So you now have your list of keywords, in Social Rabbit’s case that is 93… so now I just list them all in my profile right?  WRONG!!!!  That is SEO suicide!  Search engines like to see the keywords used in sentences not just listed (they’re not stupid you know!).  For example if my keyword is “facebook help” I may write: Social Rabbit offers services on a wide range of social networks including Facebook help.  Can you see how I have included it in a sentence? (maybe not the best sentence in the world…)

      So you can see keywords are actually useful, they don’t just clutter up the page, but they add to your content.  You need to be including these keywords in your info tab on your Facebook page – all of you who have nothing on that tab (you know who you are) you are missing out!  Also include them in your info box under your profile pic on your Facebook page, in your LinkedIn profile description and in your Twitter profile.

      The secret to keywords is make it look natural, you know when you meet someone who dresses wonderfully and you comment on it, they say “oh this old thing I just threw it on…” that’s how your keywords should appear in sentences, natural, easy to read and part of the sentence – NOT STICKING OUT LIKE A SORE THUMB!

      If anyone has any other tips and tricks please share them in the comments or on the Social Rabbit Facebook Page.

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      Filed under Facebook fan pages, facebook page, linkedin, Small business, social media, twitter

      Power Posting…

      Good Morning, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

      Today it is all about “POWER POSTS”.  What is a POWER POST?  Basically it is a post that gets results, whether you are posting it on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc. you get results.  How do you write a POWER POST? (PS you should be reading POWER POST in a kind of superhero style voice!)

      13 Tips for a powerful POWER POST

      1. The BIG P – which I’ve bounced over earlier, is all about planning, don’t think you can just spur of the moment come up with a great post, a great post is crafted 🙂
      2. Short & sweet – we’re all busy, we don’t have time to read war & peace however interesting the topic, so “get to the point and get out”
      3. Call to action – if you want them to do something after reading your post spell it out, eg visit our website, buy online here, write your comments below
      4. Spelling and grammar – as someone who is BIG on this, make sure you spell check all your posts before posting, it looks unprofessional to have typo’s or grammatical errors, and can put readers off, as they get caught up in the details of the grammar and miss the message
      5. Timing – When is a good time to post that your readers will see it, try out different times and see when you get the best response
      6. Be Playful – don’t think you have to be conservative, have some fun with your posts and your audience will enjoy it too
      7. Transparent – Tell people what you are doing and why, don’t try to catch them out with something, they WON’T love you for it 
      8. Passionate – Get excited, people are attracted to passionate people, so show them how passionate you are about what you are doing
      9. Interesting – Make sure the content is interesting to your readers, you already know who you are targeting and why, so make sure that you are telling them relevant info
      10. Useful – Similar to interesting, make it useful, do your readers really want to know that you are buying a new printer, no.  If you are buying a new printer to be able to send out flashy invites to an event they might be
      11. Educate – If your goal is to educate your readers then do it, and don’t just regurgitate other people’s info, have an opinion, it makes it much more interesting
      12. Personal – Show that you’re human (I am making the assumption that you are!) people like to get to know the person behind the page/blog/twitter etc.
      13. Have a point to it – think about what the aim of writing it is, if you are just filling in time or filling in a blank space or doing it because you feel you need to, then BORING FORGET IT!

      So posters, get out there and get posting, plan what you are going to say, and excite your readers.  If anyone else has any tips for POWER POSTS let me know in the comments (note using tip 3 here).

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      Filed under Facebook fan pages, linkedin, Small business, social media, twitter

      Social Media is NOT a silver bullet

      Good afternoon, Social Rabbit here with your guide to the world of social media.

      If you think social media is the answer to all your prayers think again. It is not guaranteed to turn your brand into the next Nike, to make you a millionaire overnight or suddenly have 100s of customers knocking at your door.

      First of all work out if you are even ready to tackle the beast that is social media. tip: check out our checklist

      If you are ready then what you need to make social media work for you is,
      – Planning (or the BIG P as this bunny likes to call it), what will you do when?
      – Goals – what you want to achieve from your social media activity
      – Time or money (to pay someone else) to implement it properly
      – Willingness to give it a go, it is not a one size fits all approach & so you need to use different methods depending on your audience
      – Knowledge of how you will implement your strategy

      Even if you have looked at all this, and covered it off it isn’t a case of “build it and they will come”, it’s more

      Build
      Engage
      Ask & answer
      Know your customers

      So get building….

      Social media such as Facebook and Twitter has produced fantastic results at very low costs, BUT you need to think about what will appeal to YOUR customers, just because it worked for someone else does not mean it will work for you, as a new media there is a lot of trial and error that goes on.  What is great that you can try something today if it doesn’t work tweak it tomorrow… 

      I’d love to hear about what you’ve done to engage your customers, tell me in the comments, or on our Facebook page.

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      Filed under Facebook fan pages, Small business, social media, twitter