Social media influence tips
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Social media influence tips
A collection of top tips to boost your social media effectiveness
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Janssen to close ground-breaking psoriasis Facebook page - NEWS - articles - Marketing and Communications - PMLiVE

Janssen to close ground-breaking psoriasis Facebook page - NEWS - articles - Marketing and Communications - PMLiVE | Social media influence tips |
Nearly 18 months after its innovative Psoriasis 360 initiative was launched Janssen has called time on the campaign’s Facebook page.

Announcing its decision the UK pharma company said company personnel had found themselves having to remove an increasing number of posts, with the effect of “stifling worthwhile discussions”.

Janssen told PMLiVE that within the last three months alone a third of all posts to the page had to be removed, the majority because they mentioned prescription-only medicines, but a “significant minority” were disallowed because they included offensive language.

David Keown, senior communications manager at Janssen, told PMLiVE “We are sorry to be closing the Psoriasis 360 Facebook page, and it is not a decision we have taken lightly.

“The page was created to provide a forum for people affected by psoriasis to share experiences and information (as a resource for patients). Increasingly over time, we have found that we are suppressing conversations on the page, rather than facilitating them.

“We are governed by strict rules in terms in communicating with the general public – these rules mean that we are having to terminate some conversations.”

When posts mentioned a specific prescription-only drug by name, or talked about the effectiveness of a particular treatment (or its side effects) Janssen either had to ask for them to be changed or the company had to disallow them.

“The team managing the page had not anticipated the scale of unacceptable comments (from a compliance and regulatory perspective) that users wanted to post on the page,” Keown said.

He said the initiative was set up with “robust processes and contingency plans” to ensure it kept within the ABPI Code of Practice and the company’s own internal compliance rules.

“We have spent a great deal of time on the moderation process and recording details of everything we disallow for audit purposes. However, the over-riding reason for coming to this decision is because we have been forced to cut short online discussions that could take place freely in a forum run by a patient organisation.”

The page was the first in pharma to allow ‘post-moderated’ comments, assessing comments only after they had been posted, something that changes to Facebook’s terms and conditions in August since forced all companies to do.

The campaign was launched in October 2010 and one of the driving forces behind it was Janssen’s digital strategy and social media manager Alex Butler, who left Janssen last Autumn to set up digital marketing communications agency The Social Moon.

Psoriasis 360 won a number of industry awards, including the Hill & Knowlton Award for Innovation at the 2011 PMEAs, where the judges praised the patient engagement provided by its use of social media channels.

The PMEA judges felt the campaign provided “an innovative approach in terms of use of social media” and they praised the way it gave even ‘silent’ patients the opportunity to share information and find out more.

In a post to the Psoriasis 360 Facebook page Janssen said “[We are] proud to have provided this forum at a time when they weren't as widespread as they are today. But instead of our original intention of facilitating meaningful conversations, our experience shows we are actually hampering conversations that could take place freely on a page run by a patient organisation.”

Janssen consulted with the Psoriasis Association and is recommending users of its Facebook page migrate to the UK patient group’s page before the page is closed in a few weeks' time. The pharma company also used its closure note on Facebook to highlight other patient resources from the Psoriasis Association, Psoriasis Scotland Arthritis Link Volunteers and University of Manchester Skin Research.

The company said it remains committed to continuing with the other parts of the Psoriasis 360 campaign, which include a central website, a YouTube channel, Twitter account and an iPhone app.

“While we are disappointed to be closing this page, we believe we are doing so for the right reasons,” the company said.

But despite the difficulties the Psoriasis 360 Facebook page encountered, Janssen had not ruled out using the social network again in the future.

“Facebook is undoubtedly a powerful vehicle for communicating with stakeholder groups so we would consider it for other future applications, albeit bearing in mind the insights gained from this experience,” Keown said.
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Social Pizza By Domino’s Australia -

Social Pizza By Domino’s Australia - | Social media influence tips |

Using your customer to help develop your products and service does a number of things.


1. It creates a product the customer wants

2. It develops brand loyalty

3. Generates an emotional attachment to your product at launch (meaning instant demands)

4. Provides a PR opportunity

5. Utilises word of mouth marketing


Social media has allowed every brand or company to use the wisdom of the crowd through engagement. Below is a great article by Martin Michalik which demonstrates how Dominos Australia have used crowdsourcing to generate a "social pizza".


Today Domino’s Pizza in Australia launched an interesting social media project – The Social Pizza. Domino’s is asking its Facebook fans, almost 500,000 at the moment, to come up with Australia’s first Social Pizza through a Facebook app.

As Domino’s are no strangers to making the consumer the center of their experience, the social app will allow the fans to vote for a custom-made pizza which will feature on the real Domino’s menu. How will this enhance the customer experience and engagement even though it’s “just a pizza”?

You probably seen some previous effort by Domino’s, where customers could ask for “special instructions” when ordering pizza online. Like “Draw a Unicorn Fighting a Giraffe” or so. Not that difficult, but keeping the customers happy and with a smile, there are plenty of other weird/interesting requests on reddit and elsewhere.

The latest campaign for Domino’s Australia, created by BMF Sydney, will give the Facebook fans the power to create a new pizza, which in turn will be sold on its menu across the country.

The fans will be able to vote on a wide range of factors such as the type of base used, the sauces used, the toppings and even its name. The most popular choices will be then added onto the new pizza which will be added onto Domino’s.

This simple campaign ticks many boxes: leveraging an existing Facebook community, crowd-sourcing, using social for R&D, giving fans ownership of the brand and engagement.

For more details have a look at Domino’s Australia Facebook fan page, you can try the Domino’s Australia Social Pizza App (you can vote for the type of sauce today, the base is already chosen).

Curious about the results and the outcome of a one week’s campaign? The voting is only from 19th till 25th of March.

And a simple key learning – listen to your customers and fans! Domino’s has potentially almost 500,000 judges that will pick up the next best combination for pizza.

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22 Tips To Create Great Content

22 Tips To Create Great Content | Social media influence tips |
They say content is king. But what exactly makes your content worthy of that title? It is nearly impossible to be witty, interesting and informative at the same time post after post, article after article. The inforgraphic below tries to ease the pain of many publishers dealing with writer’s block.

Involving your team, your readers or interviewing someone seem like good ways to spice up your blog posts. Similarly case studies usually provide interesting material for practice-focused articles that attract a big number of readers. Check out further tips to create great content and to fight the lack of inspiration.

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7 Ways Blogging Will Help You Overcome a Social Media Crisis

7 Ways Blogging Will Help You Overcome a Social Media Crisis | Social media influence tips |
We see it happen all the time, social media crises break out, the brands are unprepared and the angry crowd takes control of their social media channel – and the brand. Some brands manage to recover quickly, while others continue to be blogged about and made examples of.But did you know that simply having an established blog can help protect you from all of that negativity taking over? Even without a crisis plan your blog can help you regain control of the situation and put an end to the crisis, while coming out of it with minimum repercussions.

Now doesn’t that sound like something you can get on board with?! Especially since being PSers you’re already half way there! Well hold on to your keyboards ladies and gentlemen, because you’ve got a powerful tool up your sleeve and now it’s just a matter of knowing how to use it!

1- Utilize your most powerful tool – your voice

Being an avid blogger you’ve already found it and are on your way to perfecting it, and believe it or not, it’s that same voice that will help dig you out of a crisis. With an established blog you’ve already spent the time developing a voice of authority, one that people trust and enjoy. You’re not entering a crisis with zero recognition and attempting to speak loud and strong. By using it to your advantage in a crisis, your voice will continue to resonate with your audience and their respect won’t waver.

2- The network that will come to your defense

As a preventative measure, one of the first rules of thumb in your social media crisis plan is to build up a strong network before you find yourself faced with a social media attack. And guess what, those loyal readers you’ve earned are your network!

By nurturing this network on a regular basis, you’ve developed loyal fans who, given the opportunity, will come to your defense during a crisis, helping you regain control of the situation by adding positive perspectives to the negativity flooding in.

3- There’s no guessing in knowledge

Not only do you have a solid network of loyal readers, but with time you’ve come to know these readers. They’re not just a bunch of faceless, nameless beings. They’re real people whose faces you see day after day in the comments section of your blog. With time you’ve grown to know each one and built a real relationship with them.

This means that once you’re faced with a crisis, you’ll have the advantage of knowing who you’re talking to. You’ll understand what they’re feeling and what they expect of you, giving yourself the advantage of meeting their needs straight away, while continuing to connect with them and strengthening your bond.

4- FAQ your way to amnesty

One of the biggest and most strategic steps in your social media crisis plan is setting up an informative FAQ, answering all possible questions about the crisis and your brand.
Although your FAQ can be published to your corporate website or it’s own Facebook tab, nothing gives it as much power or potential as having an established blog to publish it on.

Tip: Don’t forget to enable those comments so that people may continue the conversation, voice their opinions, ask questions – all while providing your still-happy customers with that platform to come to your defense.

5- The rankings you’ve worked hard for

It takes time to rank high within the search engines, but it’s a known fact that a regular and consistent blog is a definite means to that end. Being an avid blogger has probably already began to prove itself useful in the SEO department. Now consider the SEO advantages your official statement and FAQ will gain from – allowing your content to be found by a maximum number of searchers, while positioning you as a credible and reliable source of information.

6- Feed the headlines

Reporters and bloggers who want to cover the crisis will look to your website or blog first. By having an established blog and by providing timely and accurate details about the crisis as it unfolds, reporters and bloggers will have a credible source to follow and look to for details regarding the crisis – from a platform that you control. You won’t have to worry about less-than-truthful information hitting the headlines when they’re all subscribed to your blog and FAQ.

7- Take advantage of your social proof

An active blog with lots of posts, high rankings and best yet, lots of engagement, provides you with an instant air of credibility to those new-comers migrating to your site during a crisis. Looking for answers and resolution, they’ll find a whole level of social proof instilling them with a sense of trust and the message that your brand “gets it” and is worth hearing out.

The secret unveiled

The key is to leverage all the hard work you’ve already put into developing a resourceful blog and using it to empower your brand in it’s time of need. The goal in a crisis is to come out of it quickly, with the least amount of repercussions to your business as possible. You’ve already developed a platform, an audience, rankings and credibility. Now it’s just a matter of using them to your advantage in a crisis to come out of if even stronger, with an impenetrable bond with your readers
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Ten Social Networking Mistakes to Avoid When Marketing Your Business | Jeffbullas's Blog

Ten Social Networking Mistakes to Avoid When Marketing Your Business | Jeffbullas's Blog | Social media influence tips |
Business owners worldwide are utilizing various social media platforms to promote products and reach out to consumers.

Many companies thrive, thanks to strong web presence. However, some struggle as a result of costly mistakes made during the online marketing process. Thus, before you began marketing your business it is advisable to brush up on your social media skills.

Better yet, read on for a crash course on the ten most common social networking mistakes and how you can avoid making them yourself.

#1. No Clear Social Marketing Strategy

Forbes columnist Pamela Springer notes that many business owners fail to properly budget their resources. “Even though many social media applications are free,” she writes, “they still cost small businesses time – and time equals money.” She suggests a formal online marketing plan, with a clear goal for each step of the process.

#2. The Media is Inconsistent

With a marketing plan in place, every Tweet and Facebook post should be planned in advance to avoid inconsistency. Terri Seymour, of Site Pro News, advises company marketers to draw up a weekly social media schedule—and then follow it. “Choose a couple of the best sites and give them the time and attention they need to work their magic,” she writes.

#3. No one Monitors the Site

BusinessWeek columnist Mike Proulx says inattentive site management can lead to a PR nightmare. Every site on the Internet is vulnerable to hacking viruses and other online malfeasances. As a result, web programmers must remain one step ahead of violators by continuously checking up on all company sites.

#4. The Material isn’t Proofread

“Bad grammar and spelling can make a good page go bad,” Seymour notes. All blogs, posts and tweets should be professional in appearance, even though social media sites are generally informal in nature. Authors should read posts as they are writing them, and have a co-worker look over the copy before it is uploaded online.

#5. Missed Branding Opportunities

Springer notes that most social media sites include multiple fields for profile owners to personify their page—but many business owners leave them blank. “Your company information, logo, and any other links or images on your profile are the sales tools you have to pique a potential customer’s interest in your business,” she writes. “If your profile is half complete it reflects poorly on your company.”

#6. Accounts aren’t Linked

Businesses with multiple sites should install a mechanism to link them together—and connect various users of these sites in the process. Seymour advises business owners to link social sites on their official homepage using widgets. Additionally, posts on the homepage should be automatically uploaded to all social sites simultaneously, rather than one at a time.

#7. Profiles aren’t Claimed

Springer reminds business owners that, whether or not they choose to participate in social media, their sites are part of the public domain. Yelp!, Google Places and other services create company profiles for owners who have not done so themselves—and this is a great opportunity to build web presence. “All of these services give you the option to control what’s shown about your company and how it’s shown,” she says.

#8. Responses aren’t Timely

In the event of bad publicity, Proulx warns that waiting too long can result in further disaster. When businesses err, he says immediate, humble acknowledgment of wrongdoing on social media platforms is the best route to take. “Taking the time to craft a perfect corporate response with layers of bureaucratic approvals will only cause more damage to your brand’s social reputation,” he says.

#9. No “Likes” or “Follows”

Seymour notes these seemingly arbitrary terms are highly relevant in the age of Facebook and Twitter, because they can greatly increase social activity on a business site. Company owners should include a request in their email signature, print a URL on their business cards and post links whenever possible. Many companies offer customer incentives to those who “like” or “follow” them—and these are typically the businesses with the most active sites.

#10. The Scope is Limited

A social media campaign should be continuous, says Proulx, since a cardinal goal of networking is to reach new clientele. Furthermore, new platforms emerge every year, and web users will often cast aside “old-fashioned” brands for those who acclimate to current trends. “While campaigns that have a social media extension may come and go,” he writes, “you must maintain an “always on” approach and outlook.”

Company owners today must contend with all the nuts and bolts associated with social media, for it has become a standard of modern business practices. Brands that embrace the social networking phenomenon are much likelier to draw in new customers—and their money.

However, firmly understanding how various platforms work, what their limitations are and how people use them is a fundamental first step.
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What To Tweet? The Value Of Social Following -

What To Tweet? The Value Of Social Following - | Social media influence tips |
Not sure what to tweet? And also if there is a real value of all those followers and tweets? I'll help you out...
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Why Can’t Twitter Woo the French? | Social Digital Space

Why Can’t Twitter Woo the French? | Social Digital Space | Social media influence tips |
As reported in the latest study by Outreachr, Twitter plug-in penetration in France is surprisingly low. We analysed 350,000 domains in the travel and finance sectors to find that only 0.5% of French websites had any kind of Twitter button or plugin on their pages. By comparison 7.2% of English websites had the Twitter plugin installed. Our findings are backed up by social media survey giants Sysmos, who also report a 7.2% Twitter penetration rate for Twitter in the UK. Let’s explore some ideas that might explain why the French aren’t as Twitter-obsessed as the Brits.It’s likely that Twitter hasn’t reached brand ubiquity in France due to competition laws. France has had strict laws against the promotion of corporate enterprise on television since 1992. This is a killer for brands – you simply can’t mention Twitter (or Facebook) on French TV unless the social network has key relevance to a news item. Neither can a company spokesperson ask an audience to ‘Follow us on Twitter’. In Britain we’ve become accustomed to journalists treating Twitter and other branded social media as credible news sources in their own right. The French government is also much more controlling when it comes to free speech on Twitter, demanding that parody accounts mocking President Nicolas Sarkozy be suspended. On the other hand, French Twitter signups increased when people rushed to join the conversation about disgraced ex-IMF Managing Director Dominic Strauss-Kahn’s sexual assault scandal. Politics seem to change the course of the French Twittersphere, either by censoring or igniting it.

Competition laws also prop up the historic French discomfort with Anglo-Saxon cultural influence. France has its own French-language social networks like Copains D’avant (which you can log into via Facebook) which it understandably might want to protect, despite the fact that Facebook has already surpassed it in French users.

Perhaps the French language itself doesn’t take to Twitter’s 140-character limit. The average French word is 5.13 letters long, longer than the average English word at 5.10 letters. To back this up, the French blogosphere is a far more active place. To make another international comparison, bloggers have speculated that Germany’s culture of exclusive, region-centric online social groups means that Twitter just doesn’t reflect how Germans prefer to communicate. It’s also worth debating whether the French still prefer to speak over the telephone and face-to-face in their business dealings.

Twitter traffic by country:

Perhaps Twitter can gain a stronger foothold in France if Twitter worldwide remains at centre stage for a long time. As Twitter continues to power global news trends and internet marketing becomes ever more social and viral, it may become more appealing to French users who want to connect to the rest of the world. Do you think France will eventually come around and embrace Twitter?
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How to Harness the Power of LinkedIn - INFOGRAPHIC | Jeffbullas's Blog

How to Harness the Power of LinkedIn - INFOGRAPHIC | Jeffbullas's Blog | Social media influence tips |
A presentation on the topic of how to cook a chocolate tart is going to “bomb”at a cheese maker’s convention.

It will be the wrong audience for an interesting topic, but the cheesemakers didn’t pay $1,200 for a conference ticket to hear information about “Tarts”!

A paying participant at a car dealer expo will want to hear about horsepower and handbrakes and will either leave the hall or fall asleep if the speakers start talking about knitting and slipper making.

The art of successful communicating and engagement involves selecting the right audience and providing them with information and content that resonates with their needs and wants.

Not all Social Networks are Equal.

When it comes down to sheer popularity Facebook is the social network that wins.

Facebook is also about “Identity” whether that is a personal profile or a “business brand” persona.

Twitter is about “Events” which could be the next plane crashing into the Hudson river or letting your audience know that your latest blog post is published…that is an event!

Google plus is “Core” and is woven into the science of search as Google embeds it into every one of its web properties from Picasa to YouTube.

It cannot and should not be ignored by marketers as social signals are now being measured and monitored by Google machines and is being woven into the DNA of search. Optimizing your online assets (blog and website) for search engines is vital.

Different social networks will be need to be included in your social media marketing strategy depending on your goals, audience and tactics.

Don’t Ignore LinkedIn

If you want to communicate to a B2B audience and business professionals then LinkedIn with its 150 million members is a good place to play.

If you want to engage with the business leaders and executives then it is the first channel to turn to.

So What are the Engagement Levels of LinkedIn?

Facebook and Tumblr have very high engagement levels but LinkedIn’s focus on the business community provides it with some serious online networking power.

47.6% of users use LinkedIn 0-2 hours per week26% use it from 3 to 4 hours a week12.2 % use it for 5-6 hours per week (that is nearly 1,400 minutes per month)

What are the Top 3 Favorite Features of LinkedIn?

There are hundreds of thousands of “Groups” on the platform from retail to social media and marketing and much more you will find interests and topics on any business subject imaginable.

Groups – 79.6%People searching – 70.6%People you may know – 66.8%

How does LinkedIn Help?

LinkedIn is a great online network community that that can help you with a range of tasks

76.9% of users say LinkedIn helped them research people and companies68.8% said that it helped reconnect with past business associates49.7% said it was good for building new network relationships with individuals who may influence potential customers


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Seven Steps to Social Media Marketing Success | Social Media Today

Seven Steps to Social Media Marketing Success | Social Media Today | Social media influence tips |
Social media is not difficult to do and it’s not really new, though the way we treat it, analyze it and talk about it certainly is. It has been a fundamental of human conduct throughout history and if I were willing to go back and examine the moment in time when Socrates chose to drink hemlock I am pretty sure we shall find that there was social media at work creating the pressures necessary for an outcome which, in hindsight, appears to be incomprehensible.

A little more recently in terms of history I took a look at the Reformation and its astounding success against all possible odds (and the forces arraigned against it were many) and again, there, social media seemed to play a pivotal role in bringing it about. I put the study and its juxtaposition with today’s social media imperatives in a video which if you have time to see will be as enlightening as it is educational.

The essence of the exercise was to use history to attain the distance necessary for valuable lessons to be learnt. Where social media is concerned the seven magic little ingredients at the heart of every successful social media marketing campaign are:

01. A focal point. This is never a product or a service, though these can be the catalysts for creating one. A focal point is always aspirational. It resonates with the public at a deeper level than just their need to change something immediate. Apple products, for instance, do not talk so much about their features (though obviously they present them) precisely because their focal point is not so much as whether they will have 10 or 20MB of extra memory or are a few seconds faster. They, instead, use the focal point of their design to unlock the aspirational desire in the minds and hearts of their target audience. This then translates into that ever so hard to define ‘cool factor’ and the rest becomes a lot more automatic.

02. Use the latest technology available. You could try to run a social media marketing campaign using the snailmail system and some posters stuck on lampposts near your neighbourhood but my guess is that it would not really work all that well. Technology and social media go hand-in-hand because the former has the ability, in each iteration, to include more and more of the latter and it is this inclusion which helps create connectivity, break down traditional barriers and bring about change.

03. Create accessibility. Make anything you publicise difficult to understand or difficult to get at and the uptake of it will be poor. Logical as this may sound human beings thrive on creating barriers, sects, cliques, societies and institutions whose very existence seems to depend upon a degree of exclusivity (just think a little how the SEO industry behaved between 2005-2010 and you’ve got a good idea of what I mean).

04. Generate engagement. When it comes to social media we all talk about engagement. How we think we do not get enough, how to get more, how others seem to be getting more than us or how we think they are getting less than they tell us they get. Our obsessions, as marketers, with engagement is such that we hardly stop to think why we should get it, which then would naturally lead us to how. Engagement happens when what we address finds resonance with a broad sector of our audience.

05. Create a meme. Memes can be any format. From an icon to a logo. From a slogan to a photograph. From a video to a song. The real requirement is that they should work in an instant and be instantly re-shareable.

06. Use Social Networks. This is a no-brainer. Yet I have been present when social media campaigns whose cost ran in the six figures were suggesting to use the wrong social network. The requirement here is not to just use a social network but to use the social network(s) which will work for you.

07. Foster gamification. This is the final requirement and it is a tricky one. You don’t nned to have an app or some kind of online badge game which will tick the gamification box. What you really need is to create a sense of ‘play’ out of the very act of participating in your social media campaign. If you manage to make your product, service or message a badge of sorts which confers implied status and a sense of fashion (think Apple products, the #Occupy movement, the ‘Yes We Can’ slogan of Obama’s election campaign) then you have the final ingredient guaranteed to help make your social media campaign, viral.

It sound easy. It’s not. We know all the ingredients which go into the make up of a human body but the art of creating one by mixing them still eludes us. Thankfully social media marketing is a little less demanding.v

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Mobile Device Detects When You're Depressed, Acts as Your Therapist

Mobile Device Detects When You're Depressed, Acts as Your Therapist | Social media influence tips |
Scientists are working on various technologies to treat depression and other mood disorders.
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Measuring The ROI Of Social Media -

Measuring The ROI Of Social Media - | Social media influence tips |
Social media has proven itself as a medium that serves as an extended platform for reaching and engaging the target audiences for brands & businesses.

This article shows some good methods of measuring ROI. Click on the headline for full article.

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The best content curation tools online

The best content curation tools online | Social media influence tips |

A great article by Lilach Bullock, click on the headline for the full article


Content curation is increasing as more and more bloggers see the potential in using the various tools available to them. Want to try it yourself? Of course you do… But before you do let’s consider what content curation is, and weigh up the pros and cons.
What is content curation?
Content curation is a technique to find, gather, and present highly selective online content around specific topics/aimed at specific groups.
The content can come from various sources, including articles, blog posts, videos, photos, tools. It can appear in a variety of places, including feeds on blogs, social media, and online newsrooms.
The cons:
There are ethical concerns over content curation. However, by taking a careful approach you can help overcome them. This includes ensuring that you give credit to all your sources through references/ links, as well as summarising the key points of these articles rather than wholly copying what they have written.
You must avoid relying solely on curated content. Instead, you need to combine curated content with your original content. Content curating should be used “in addition to” rather than “instead of” your original content.
Can become too automated. Hence, it requires a human-being to select and organise the content for their target audience. Quality should be prioritised over quantity.
The demand of sourcing relevant and valuable content can be a challenge.
Nevertheless, if done properly, content curation has many benefits. Why? Advertising is in decline and the vast nature of the internet and the online community presents significant opportunities. People increasingly want to be informed and are using the internet to do it; they are looking to the ever-growing supply of user-generated content.
The objective of content curation is to find the best content on a certain topic.
You can combine it together including with your own unique content and inform others about it. Content curation gives your readers the content they want. You are filtering through vast quantities of information and presenting the best available. You add your unique perspective on the theme. You are filtering out the useless content, and giving greater focus.
The pros:
Gives readers what they demand and what they are interested in. With content curation you can provide valuable, high quality and relevant information.
It can be used to inform, engage and entertain readers. As it enables you to act as a valuable resource for your audience, it helps build trust and authority with amongst your readers.
Build your social media networks and word-of-mouth advertising through the value you provide.
Boost your traffic. Curated content is especially useful for those new to business in the online sphere, as it helps increase traffic to your blog/website.
Curated content can be great for brand building.
Creating original content is a costly process, both in terms of time and effort. Content curation is an alternative method to creating content that is less time-consuming and highly productive.
So after weighing up the costs and benefits, if you decide content curation is for you, here are some really useful tools you may wish to consider using.
Zemanta: Content curation whilst you write on your blog. Works with most blogging platforms including WordPress.
CurationSoft: This enables you to curate information and discover things based on keywords from Google, Google blogs, YouTube, Twitter, Flickr and any RSS feed. An easy way to “bundle” and share content. Add and curate content from any public webpage. Alternatively, you can use the integrated search to add content by simply drag and dropping. Find, organise and share your favourite online content. You can even share content across a number of platforms. Find, filter and share content most valuable to you and others. Aggregate content various online sources. Can also automatically update content. Twitter curation, enables people to publish an online “newspaper” based on topics of interest to them or the community they seek to influence. turns your content creation into a magazine
Bagtheweb: BagTheWeb helps users curate Web content. For any topic, you can create a “bag” to collect, publish, and share any content from the Web.
Redux Video content curation

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3 Social Learning Trends to Watch in 2012 @hrbartender

3 Social Learning Trends to Watch in 2012 @hrbartender | Social media influence tips |

Interested in incorporating cutting-edge social techniques into your training programs? Consider these three options.


According to the 2011 Training Industry Report from - , total expenditures in training appear to be increasing.


The amount spent on training jumped about 13% from 2010, including increases in overall training budgets and payroll, and spending on outside products and services.


It’s anticipated that training will continue to be a major focus for organizations in the upcoming year, which makes sense: As our economy continues to move in a positive direction, consumers will demand better service.


This translates to a need for customer service, management and leadership training, which are poised to see increases in 2012.

Via Jenny Pesina
Jenny Pesina's comment, January 22, 2012 6:32 AM
Thanks, Michele - good adticle!
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Google Search Changes: What Businesses Should Keep In Mind | Splash Media

Google Search Changes: What Businesses Should Keep In Mind | Splash Media | Social media influence tips |
Make no mistake: despite Facebook’s tremendous reach, Twitter’s arrival as a major social media player and Bing’s slow-but-steady growth, Google is still the alpha dog in the digital media kennel with nearly 70 percent of the market. If you’re a business owner and you’re now using social media/content marketing to find leads, talk to customers and build your brand, then you are aware of the impact your blog posts, Facebook updates and YouTube videos can have on your Google search result rankings.

That’s why digital marketers focusing on search engine optimization perked up their ears last week when Google search changes were announced. Google is working up some new algorithmic magic to change up the way it presents search page results. And if those SEO experts are saying this could be the biggest search makeover in years, then small/midsize business owners need to pay attention too.

At issue is the way Google’s technologies will hunt down keywords and other relevant information when someone plugs in words or phrases in the search box. The news first got out when Google’s search guru Matt Cutts told audiences at last week’s South by Southwest Interactive Conference that his company would soon target sites that over-optimize – that is, load up too many keywords that can affect the organic, natural aspects of the content.

The Wall Street Journal put some more meat on the bones of this story, interviewing another Google search whiz, Amit Singhal, about the current introduction of semantic technologies that will better understand the true meanings of words used in searches. The changes, which will hit over the next three-to-four months, will end up providing smarter search results and a wider range of more useful information on search results pages. After all, if more and more searches may be prompted by technologies like Siri-powered iPhones, which let you ask for searches in the simplest, direct way possible, then Google needs to find a way to keep up, right?

If all this makes a business owner’s head spin, then it may be the excuse you needed to finally get some outside help for your SEO. But you should know that it all comes back to good, compelling, business-generated content that is more informational than promotional.

“Good SEO should be the same as creating a good user experience,” says Splash Media SEO specialist Cole Field. “Google is working to make their search bots smarter in detecting sites that are ranking based on ‘black-hat tactics’ like link-buying, which create hundreds of links to your site from irrelevant sources. Google’s algorithms will focus more on organic quality links to measure your authority on the Internet.”

Those links, Field explains, should be based on your blog posts, news releases, news stories and social media. “This way Google can rate your authority based on the amount of relevant online conversations happening about your site.”

If there is any group that is cheered by the forthcoming Google search changes, it’s content marketers who have long preached that educating current/prospective customers is better than trying to sell to them. Content that lets your business comment on your industry, examines problems, offers solutions – all with a human touch that’s original and worth reading and sharing – will still mean more to Google’s new pumped-up search bots in the long run.
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10 Powerful Tips to Increase Fan Engagement on Facebook | Jeffbullas's Blog

10 Powerful Tips to Increase Fan Engagement on Facebook | Jeffbullas's Blog | Social media influence tips |
Facebook is the social network preferred by most businesses when planning and implementing their social media marketing strategy. It is the most powerful social network on the planet.


Click on headline to read full article, a must read for anyone wanting to use facebook with their business

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7 Things To Blog About As A Business – Hubze Social Media Blog

7 Things To Blog About As A Business – Hubze Social Media Blog | Social media influence tips |

The stress that cramps up the bottom of the stomach as you start thinking about having to write another blog post is a common thing small business owners have to deal with all around the world. For some it is somewhat easier to handle and for others it is the last straw that prevents them from going beyond the Welcome post on their business blog.

There is a solution for this, or maybe it is just something that may help significantly, it is to make a plan and break up the days into different types of posts. This plan, or schedule, will make it so you only have to write a couple of good posts per week that would require you to sit down and come up with something thoughtful to discuss.

Two times per week, rather than every day, takes lots of stress away. Having a plan, makes it that much more manageable. It will even allow you to take hands off all the other posts and delegate them to others. So lets take a look at what other types of posts you can include on all the other days that you don’t have to be involved in.

1. YouTube Videos

Browse YouTube searching for related keywords and find videos that are interesting and are worth talking about. Post the video on the blog and write up a short commentary.

2. Guest Posts

It is easy to find guest posters for your blog, if your blog has been around for a little while and has a pagerank. You can also ask your readers to submit their articles. Search for guest posters on various forums and on

3. Archive of Best-Of Posts

Go through your old posts and look through the web stats to find the more popular posts in any one category. Write up a small summary and a commentary about them and add links with short descriptions to each of them.

4. Commentary on Someone Else’s Popular Posts

Find popular posts within your topic category on other blogs and write a commentary about it, linking to the article. Comment on the original article that you write about and let the writer know you wrote this commentary, this may get them to write a follow-up about it and get you a good link from their blog.

5. Rewritten Industry News

Search through the news and find interesting stuff going on within your industry. Write a blog post rewording the news and adding your own comments about it.

6. An Off-Topic Rant

We all need a place to go on a tangent about something off-topic. Creating these “rants” will show that there is a personality behind the blog. This will either make the readers closer to you or may push them completely away so be wise

7. Product Promotion Or News

Have a new product launching or want to highlight an existing one? Write up a short promo about it and add some of your own recommendation to it so it is not all sales letter and no personality. Talk about it like you would if you were telling your friend about it.

These are some of the things you can fill up your blog with and not spend much time getting it all written up. You can even sit down one day and write all these up and schedule them in to go live on specific days. Any other employee or an outsourced writer can take care of most of these without you having to take time to do it your self.

Schedule, Schedule, Schedule!

Create a schedule that will work for you. Figure out two days a week when it is your most convenient time when you can sit down and produce a 500- to 800-word post and work around that. Build your other types of posts around those more quality ones.

If you have time on Fridays to write freely, write then and schedule them to come out on the following Tuesday and then Thursday, filling in the Monday, Wednesday and Friday with one of the filler posts.

I do not blog on Saturdays and Sundays, but others do. There is no requirement to blog on weekends but some like to keep their readers reading fresh content every day so that is something you will need to decide for your self.

Use WordPress

Conveniently, WordPress has an awesome schedule feature for the posts where you can set a date and time when you want your post to go live and it will do it without your further interaction. I have seen bloggers that have posts scheduled a month ahead so they do not have the pressure from making sure to get something written for today or tomorrow. They have a day in a week when they do nothing else but write blog posts. 5 to 10, and schedule them for future dates. I my self have not tried this, simply because I have not found time to sit down and spit out 5 to 10 posts in one day. It is something that is on my to-do list though and maybe one day I will get to do that.

So get your schedule created and start taking blogging seriously. There is countless benefits from it that I will not be going into in this post as it is getting mighty long as it is. But remember, there is no reason to stress out about it.

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Your 1,000 Blog Reader Challenge Toolkit

Your 1,000 Blog Reader Challenge Toolkit | Social media influence tips |
Every Wednesday we’re going to talk about getting you an extra 1,000 blog readers in 90 days.I’m excited to see so many PS readers stepping out of their comfort zone and holding themselves accountable for greatness. I have no doubt that every person who accepts the challenge has the “stuff” to achieve his or her goal.

Today, we are going to get organized for the 1,000 Blog Reader Challenge in three areas. First, we’ll make sure you are watching the right numbers over the next 90 days. Second, we are going to narrow your focus to make sure you are attracting the right readers. Last, we’ll discuss how to boost your blogging metabolism (scary but fun!).

Let’s go.

Build Your Blogging Dashboard

Imagine trying to drive to the grocery store blindfolded. Although you know the general direction, you won’t be able to react to stop signs, traffic lights, and the errant pedestrian. Trying to grow your blog without tracking in place is like driving blindfolded. It’s not pretty.

Let’s correct that:

1. Set-up Google Analytics

There are dozens of ways to get Google Analytics installed on your blog. The easiest way is to let a WordPress plugin do the work for you. I use Google Analytics for WordPress by Yoast. Here’s how to set it up:

Go to your blog dashboard and click the Plugin option.

Hit Add New

Search for the “Google Analytics for WordPress” plugin

Click “Install Now”

Activate the plugin and configure the settings page

The plugin will connect with your Google Analytics (GA) account. Use the drop-down menus to make sure that you are connected to the right GA account.

Leave everything else on their default settings.

That’s it, you are set.

Set-up Your Dashboard

For the challenge, we will watch 5 important numbers:

Unique Visits: How many unique people visit your blog% New Visits: How many people are new to the neighborhoodAverage Time on Page: How long your readers stick around. The higher the number the better.Bounce Rate: We’ll watch this number but won’t stress about it. In general we want to know if people are clicking to other pages on the blog.Page Title: We want to know which posts are kicking butt. We will model future posts based on what we learn from these rockstars.

You can track these numbers by creating a Custom Google Report. Don’t worry – here’s a quick walkthrough -

Keep Track of Your Numbers with a Custom Report

1. Click the Custom Reporting Tab: This is where you’ll create all of your custom reports. Custom reports are a great way to pull the specific info you need into one easy to read report.

2. Create and Name Your Custom Report: Keep it simple – “Blog 1000 Dashboard” is cool.3. Add the metrics you want to report:

Click the + Add Metric button to add the specific metrics you want to watch. Set-up your report to match what you see in the Metrics Group section screen shot

4. Add Page Title as a dimension:

This will sort your metrics by Page title.

5. Click Save to see your Custom Report.

You’ll get a report like the one below. Now you’ll see at a glance which posts are attracting new visitors and keeping people on your blog. Great right!

We’ll talk more about this in the coming weeks but this is a great start.

Make it your business to understand Google Analytics. It’s an extremely powerful tool for turning your blog into a lean mean reader getting machine.

Before we move on, set aside time every Friday to check your new Blog 1000 Custom Report.

Geting Focused

Readers are attracted to “focused” blogs. Rambling or writing about what’s on your mind is great for hobby “journals” but not professional blogs. A focused editorial calendar is a critical part of your march to 1,000 new readers.

Here’s a tip that I share with my blog review folks:

1. Make a list of the top 10 problems, challenges, and/or goals that your readers have.

I want you to be super specific here. You can NOT list a general goal like “be healthy”. Instead, your list should have precise items such as “lose 10 pounds before wedding”.

2. Take these 10 problems and brainstorm 5 posts that will solve the problem.

These 5 posts should include a (1) “Checklist”, (2) a “How to”, (3) a “Tools” post, (4) a personal story or “boogie man” post, and a (5) general encouragement post. You know should have 50 posts tailor made for your audience.

This is your editorial calendar. Every one of my blog review clients get tips like this. This editorial calendar will work. You just have to spend 60 minutes putting it together.

3. Pick the top 3 challenges from your list and write a Special “How to” Report for each.

Your report should be 5 pages max. This is a quick and dirty guide that shows your reader that you mean business. You don’t have to write a novel to be effective. Once you finished your Special Report create a landing page for the report. Give the report away for free in exchange for an email address.

Don’t skip this step. Your Special Reports are assets that will create leads, sales, and grow your email list. Do this if you do nothing else.

Boost Your Blogging Metabolism.

Time for a Dr. Phil moment. You can’t take your blog to the 1,000 reader mountain top maintaining the same schedule and doing the same stuff you did yesterday. Like Einstein said, “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results”. In order to kick serious butt you will have to form new habits and change your outlook.

Start here:

1. Add one post a week to your schedule.

You knew this was coming. Well my friend, time to suck it up and increase your posting frequency. Add just one post. You should already have 50 ideas from the editorial calendar exercise!

The extra post will do two things: 1) It will jumpstart your blog’s momentum and show your readers that you are adding more value, 2) Give you more opportunities to hit post home runs. Lately, I have written more 100+ retweet posts. These posts have supercharged the traffic here at Pushing Social. My secret? Well, if you want more viral posts you need to write more posts. That’s it.

2. Get active in a forum or popular Tweet Chat.

Find a TweetChat or forum that is filled with your ideal reader. Now set aside 30 minutes a week to hang out there. You’ll get your true fans from these spots.

3. Start Commenting:

There’s one website that sends me new readers every month from just one comment. Now I used some voodoo tactics in that comment but I’m shocked that a comment could bring so much traffic. Like Forums and Tweetchats, find a popular blog with an active community. Dig in and spend 15-20 minutes a week writing comments there. You might even get a guest posting gig out of it.

This is one of the longest posts, I’ve ever written. But, I want to make sure you get start the 1,000 Blog Reader challenge off with a BANG!

Ok, jump into the comments and tell me what you think. Let me know if you have any questions too.
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9 Awesome Reasons to Use Infographics in your Content Marketing | Jeffbullas's Blog

9 Awesome Reasons to Use Infographics in your Content Marketing | Jeffbullas's Blog | Social media influence tips |
We live in an age of “Big Data“..which means there is more data than ever before.

In one day we create 1.5 billion pieces of content, 140 million tweets and 2 million videos.

Trying to make sense of the mountains and oceans of data that are now part of our knowledge world due to computers, mobiles and the web is a daily challenge.

Do you bookmark, file it or Evernote the link or PDF?Do you punch the reference into your iPhone or iPadDo you grab a pen and jot it down on your beloved Moleskine notepad?

We constantly are attempting to organise, collate and curate information that pours at at as from screens in a torrent.

Consuming that data is like drinking from a fire hose.

What are Infographics?

They are a mix of design, writing and analysis that are ideal for an age of big data. (just like you see at the top of this page)

Some other examples can be found here -”6 Fantastic Facebook Marketing Infographics“.

Infographics are a visually compelling communication medium that done well can communicate complex data in a visual format that is potentially viral.

They take deep data and present it in a visual shorthand.

“Infographics” is one efficient way of combining the best of text, images and design to represent complex data that tells a story that begs to be shared.

What Research Reveals about Infographics

Recent research from Barbara M. Miller and Brooke Barnett discovered this about “Infographics”

“On their own, text and graphics are both useful yet imperfect methods for communication. Written language allows an almost infinite number of word combinations that allow deep analysis of concepts but relies heavily on the reader’s ability to process that information. Graphics may be easier for the reader to understand but are less effective in communication of abstract and complicated concepts. … combining text and graphics allows communicators to take advantage of each medium’s strengths and diminish each medium’s weaknesses.”

Does your industry need to present data in an effective manner to communicate and engage its customers and prospects?..Then infographics could be part of the answer.

The Growth of Infographics

I noticed the power of Infographics about 6 months ago when I included it in blog article and was surprised by the traffic response. On taking a closer look at its popularity, I decided to use Google “Insights for Search” analytics to determine the increase in the interest in the keyword “Infographics” as reflected in search volume increases since 2004. I discovered that since just prior to the start of 2010 to the beginning of 2012, infographic search volumes have increased by over 800% in just over 2 years.

Statistics from the social network Digg reveal that since 2007, infographics on Digg have increased by 250 times!

Now that is a trend wave worth catching!

Why Include Infographics in your Content Marketing Strategy?

When it comes down to it Infographics they may be a compelling but why use them?

Source: Web Marketing Group

1. Compelling and Attractive

There is one thing that I have discovered while blogging is that people love facts, figures and statistics. Add some compelling images and graphics and …”voila“, you have addictive content!

2. Easily Scanned and Viewed

Human beings are highly visual and because 90% of of the information that comes to the brain is visual you need to tap into that “optic nerve”

3. Viral Capabilties

Due to infographics attractiveness the capacity for them to be shared on social networks and become viral is much higher than ordinary text content.

4. Portable (Embeddable)

When designing, developing and publishing an infographic the code to put it on a WordPress blog or website is provided as an embed code. This then creates an automatic link from their site to yours.

5. Worldwide Coverage

In a world where online publishing is now visible globally at the push of a button, infographics can provide global coverage that local print media could never do.

6. Brand Awareness

Creating an infographic that is embedded with your logo and brand displayed is a powerful means of creating a greater “Brand Awareness”

7. Increases Traffic

An infographic that is linked and compelling by its nature will drive traffic to your website band blog as people “share” and “click”

8. Benefits Search Engine Optimisation

The viral nature of the infographic medium makes people link to your site and Google will index your website higher due to Google’s “Page Rank” algorithm. This increases the importance that search engines pace on your site.

9. Shows an Expert understanding of a Subject

The research required to create an infographic will display your knowledge and position you as an expert on your category or topic.

The challenge with infographics is creating them.

There are new tools and platforms emerging that make creating them easier such as and
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Why Sentiment Analytics is Crucial to Social Marketing | Social Media Today

Why Sentiment Analytics is Crucial to Social Marketing | Social Media Today | Social media influence tips |
As the use of social media has become more of a necessity than a random activity, marketing has seen a big shift in reaching out to potential customers. Today, as brands enter the age of social business, people are learning that they have a voice when it comes to product development through customer-company collaborations. The salesman approach is already passe. What the buyer says is more important now than what the seller is talking about. Customer relations management is one of the key components that is crucial for business to swim in the vast ocean of social media. A single tweet or an insensitive comment on Facebook can make or break any brand. Just look at how Jeff Jarvis turned a snowball into an avalanche of rants during Dell Hell a couple of years ago.

Marketers now realize that emotions complement buying personas of social media users. Thanks to social platforms, it has given customers a podium of sorts to express their insights and emotions about a brand. While social media ROI still a gray area, some marketers are still skeptic if social platforms are mere PR and marketing enhancements rather than a tool that could determine emotions as a key factor affecting purchasing decisions. According to a recent IBM survey, 1,700 CMOs admitted that creating a emotional connection with their customers has become one of their top priorities. Why? As much as you want to enhance your brand’s PR, you should leverage people’s emotions as well. Sentiment analytics and PR complement each other. These two areas should work in synergy in order to build a polished CRM initiative for every company.

So how do we deduce this so-called “emotion connection” between brands and consumers? One of the latest fields in marketing called neuromarketing studies consumers’ sensorimotor, cognitive, and affective response to marketing stimuli. Every ad conveyed through traditional media or social channels begets a reflex action from a person. Marketers can learn why consumers make the decisions they do, and what part of the brain is telling them to do it through neuromarketing. Traditional marketers still tend to rely on conventional market research but the rules have changed with the rise of social platforms. Actionable data are now made available where everything is made instant through the use of social channels. A smart marketer doesn’t rely on old school marketing tactics alone, with advancements such as eye-tracking studies and real-time analytics, it’s a must that marketers and brands should keep their options open and ascertain what will augment their marketing arsenal.

Using social channels to get a message across is just the linchpin to acquire social data. It’s impossible to acquire social data without using social platforms. Every brand on the planet has established themselves in relevant social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The next challenge is how to squeeze some juice out of consumers that is crucial to every marketing campaign. Social data isn’t a fad, every feedback, rant, or suggestion is essential to make a successful campaign especially if a brand meticulously measures social behavior from user-generated content.

Behavioral analytics tools such as a “mood meter” is being used by news organizations in order to gauge readers’ feedback aside from comments and rants, but as businesses embrace social marketing practices and begin thinking like publishers, it’s a must that they learn to assess and analyze what people are saying about their products. Keep in mind that every Tweet or Like carries a sentiment, and with every sentiment there’s an emotion that could be turned into a purchasing opportunity.
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Why Your Social Media Policy May Be Illegal | Social Media Today

Why Your Social Media Policy May Be Illegal | Social Media Today | Social media influence tips |

An interesting article for any company active in the US and have a social media policy

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Cadbury's top five best practice tips for Google+

Cadbury's top five best practice tips for Google+ | Social media influence tips |
Google+ is still a mystery to many brands, but some brave souls have been using the fledgling social platform to build a new community of brand advocates.As of this week Cadbury has been added to more than 500,000 G+ circles, making it the most popular consumer brand on the social network.

We recently reported on its G+ product launch, but what other tactics has the confectionery brand used to build its community?

Cadbury social media and community manager Jerry Daykin said the company had been using Google+ primarily to engage consumers around its sponsorship of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

We haven’t reinvented the wheel, but we have been successful by taking the features that make the network unique, and being willing to experiment with them.”

Here are Jerry’s top five tips on how to make the most out of Google+:

1. Listen (and search)

"Before jumping into a new social space, listen to what people are saying about you, about your industry, about related products - is there already a healthy discussion you could be a part of?

If not, are you equipped to start one - or willing to admit that your target audience isn't there?

On Google+ listening begins with searching. Once live, make sure you continue to ask for and listen to feedback from your followers, and never stop searching the wider chatter.

As one of the first brands to be active and appear in 'What's Hot', we've sparked occasional debate, but spotting that early gave us the chance to positively engage with the community and learn from our activities."

2. Know the Community

"No two platforms attract quite the same crowd, and G+ is no exception.

Though its appeal is increasingly mainstream it remains most famous for attracting photographers and a tech-friendly crowd, and posts tailored to these audiences do tend to go down well.

Much like Twitter, G+ is a network where individuals directly connect and have great influence. Establishing and engaging key influencers in your field can help you positively engage a much wider audience.

Playing to the early influence of Google's own staff we produced customised Dairy Milk chocolate bars with some of their names on to celebrate the launch - many of them were so delighted to receive them they shared an image and a link to our page to hundreds of thousands of their followers."

"It's worth considering how you might be able to collaborate with other existing brand pages or individuals to mutually achieve larger visibility and share of voice.

While there are times you may want to say the same thing across a range of platforms you really should consider how best to present and word it for different audiences.

Don't be afraid to ask for and encourage response but be wary that 'shares' are a big endorsement and we’ve seen that pushing people to do so can come across as spammy.

Delight users with relevant, tailor made activity and the shares should follow."

3. Be Visual

"One thing G+ does particularly well is to showcase video and photo content prominently.

The 'What's Hot' section on G+ is almost entirely dominated by visual topics, photographs in particular, and while text only updates can get a good
response on other platforms on G+ they rarely cut through.

For a brand like Cadbury this is a great opportunity to share our wider content, but we've also been sure to create simple G+ specific imagery.

If you're a brand without an arsenal of visuals it's still well worth considering what simple assets you can use to catch the eye."

4. Use the unique functionality

"Circles are a great way of giving users the specific tailored content they want or to carry on specific conversations with small groups on your page.

At this stage you'll have to post and ask people if they want to be in a certain circle and then add them all individually - whilst this takes time it is actually a good way of getting to know your followers.

We’re actually piloting a trial of ‘public circles’ - allowing users to opt in to our circles at any time by clicking on the images at the top of our page which is going well so far."

"Video hangouts are also a key feature and a powerful way of letting users have a very direct connection with you - we've only just begun to maximise them, with a public chat with Olympic hopeful Shanaze Reade under our belt.

At present brands can hangout with a small group, record it and later share it more widely, though the 'Hangouts on Air' feature will make bigger, live events possible.

We’re looking at how we collaborate with fans in a hangout or give them opportunities they otherwise wouldn’t get (like challenging an Olympian to a game)."

5. Measure

"There may not be a built in analytics tool at present but looking at the 'ripples' on each post is a great way of seeing how your content is being shared and who your most influential followers are.

You can also use a range of free tools such as link shorteners and 3rd party G+ tools (such as Zoomsphere) which make tracking your growth, engagement and click through easier than you might think.

Of course as public tools you can just as easily use them to check out other pages or even your competitors, and it's worth keeping an eye on them as they too try and develop best practice.

Building a business case for a new network, and establishing yourself on it, is never easy so identifying examples of success may help.

In Google+'s case it will be interesting to see how the platform develops and whether brands can eventually afford not to be on it."
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Three Ways to Plan a Social Media Whisper Campaign | Splash Media

Three Ways to Plan a Social Media Whisper Campaign | Splash Media | Social media influence tips |
A social media whisper campaign is traditionally a method of persuasion in which damaging rumors are spread about the target. For example, you may have heard about a little conflict last year between Google and Facebook, in which a major PR firm was hired to spread negative information about Google.

But did you know that there are positive, ethical ways to orchestrate a social media whisper campaign? Here are three methods of getting people talking about a company’s product/services in a good way:

Tease a new product or services offering by asking your employees to use their own social media networks. For example, a car dealership could ask members of its sales staff to tweet, “Big things coming from ABC Auto next week. You won’t want to miss this!”Send samples of your product to customers and request that they post about them. Just make sure the recipients are transparent about getting the product for free. For example, a cosmetics company could send 100 of their new lipsticks out to 100 customers, and request that they post on Facebook about their experience: “ABC Cosmetics sent me a free lipstick last week! I’ve never had a color stay on for so long.”Ask your customers to share pictures of your product or a snapshot of themselves at your company’s location. Social media is all about interaction and engagement, so seeking feedback about every aspect of your organization is vital. A dentist’s office could encourage patients to post pictures on the company Facebook page of their “post-cleaning grin.” Again, full transparency is crucial – there is no shame in requesting endorsement or engagement. Just be up front about it.

When planning a social media whisper campaign for your company, consider asking users to tease to your new releases and share their experience using your products or services. Be honest about your promotional intentions and be sure to thank users for their participation. And like anything in social media, have fun!
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The State of Social Media Marketing Highlights: 5 Lessons from Social Marketing Leaders | Social Media Today

The State of Social Media Marketing Highlights: 5 Lessons from Social Marketing Leaders | Social Media Today | Social media influence tips |

The State of Social Media Marketing Highlights: 5 Lessons from Social Marketing Leaders


A great article from Mike Lewis. Click on Headline to read full artcile.


The State of Social Media Marketing Highlights: 5 Lessons from Social Marketing Leaders

The pace of change in the Social Marketing arena is relentless. The rate of social platform adoption continues to grow, with Facebook now touting over 800+ million members and Google +, which started with 10 million users in July, now reaching over 62+ million people. New platforms like Pinterest, which was a tiny blip on the social platform map in June of 2011, showed hockey-stick growth by December 2011, reaching over 10 million users. With the evolution of social platforms’ usage and capabilities, we are starting to see clear social marketing maturity patterns, driven by savvy social enterprises, who are setting best practices and are followed as best-in-class examples for companies starting with social.

We surveyed hundreds of marketers across industries, levels of expertise, and geographies to produce The State of Social Media Marketing: Top Areas for Social Marketing Investment and Biggest Social Marketing Challenges for 2012. It became clear that the practices of the mature Social Marketing Leaders we surveyed will be emulated in the future by less mature marketers (we’ll refer to these marketers as Novices throughout this blogpost), so here are 5 key lessons from the Social Marketing Leaders that other marketers can learn from and follow.

LESSON 1: Measure your Social Marketing efforts

The State of Social Marketing Survey, showed how Leaders value measurement and metrics they follow. 76% of these Social Marketing Leaders related that they are measuring their social media success, compared to only 22% of Novices.

Social Marketing Leaders measure and monitor and a number of metrics related to their efforts. They focus on measuring and trending their Social Presence (their brand presence across multiple social networks and platforms) with metrics such as number of followers and fans. These “best-in-class” leaders are also much more likely to measure social mentions of their brand across platforms (68% compared to 31% of Novices). They also track and benchmark Share of Social Conversations more (56% vs. 31% of Novices) and Lead Generation (44% vs. 29% of Novices). Across the board, the Social Media Leaders have adopted and are tracking many more metrics than social marketing Novices.

Comparison of Measurements between Social Marketing Leaders and Social Marketing Novices

LESSON 2: Invest in Social Media Management Platforms

44% of the Social Media Leaders surveyed already use robust Social Media Management (SMM) platforms, and another 16% are planning to implement them this year. This is compared to only 6% of Novices who currently report using social media management platforms. Social technology investment is a top area of marketing investment for the Leaders too: 64% of them said more robust Social Marketing Management is a key investment area for their companies in 2012. Here’s a quick look at all the areas where Social Marketing Leaders are planning to invest in 2012:

Social Marketing Investments planned by Social Media Leaders in 2012

LESSON 3: Monitor Brand Mentions and Industry Conversations Frequently

Social listening appears to be another area where the Social Media Leaders have made clear advances. When we asked how often marketers listen for brand mentions and industry conversations, 80% of the Social Marketing Leaders responded they actively monitor brand mentions in real- or near-time. This compares with 20% of Novices who are monitoring brand mentions this frequently.

Even in the challenging area of identifying and monitoring industry conversations online, the Social Marketing Leaders are listening more closely than their less experienced peers. 79% of the Leaders listen real- or near-time for valuable market insights, compared to only 14% of Novices.

LESSON 4: Budget and Staff Matter

Social Marketing Leaders see the correlation between their social marketing investments and business ROI. We saw a clear consensus among all surveyed marketers that they need to do more yet are concerned they don’t have enough resources and budget. However, it is apparent that Social Marketing Leaders have largely won the budgeting battle, allocating staff and budgets to their efforts. 72% of the Leaders report having budget allocated to social marketing initiatives, a big difference compared to just 22% of Novices.

When it comes to staff for the social marketing function, the Social Marketing Leaders securing dedicated staff for social marketing activities. Only 4% of the Leaders are getting by without staff specifically responsible for social marketing, compared to 22% in the Novices group.

Social Marketing Leaders, on average, have larger staff allocated to social as well. 48% of them related that they have three or more resources dedicated to social media marketing, with 16% reporting having teams of 10+. Only 8% of Novices report having a social marketing team of three or more.

LESSON 5: Challenges Exist for Everyone

As one of the fastest growing industry segments, social media marketing is becoming a core business practice that is in need of a comprehensive strategic framework, and corresponding organizational setup, best practices, workflow, infrastructure and measurement. Our State of Social Media survey confirms that, as an evolving practice, social media marketing is still in the process of being defined and measured. This is why it is not surprising to see that both Social Marketing Leaders and Social Marketing Novices report their top challenge in 2012 being measuring ROI.

Related to this challenge is the key question of how marketers should allocate resources - people and budget, to get the social marketing job done. Besides growing social presence, which continues to be a top focus for all marketers, we are starting to see that Social Marketing Leaders are not seeing tighter integration between marketing, lead generation and sales as big of a challenge as their less experienced colleagues. This is likely because experienced social marketers began the process of tighter integration in 2010 and 2011 and are beginning to see the benefits of providing an integrated customer experience across their channels and the ROI associated with that.

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What are 4 Key Goals in Content Marketing? | Jeffbullas's Blog

What are 4 Key Goals in Content Marketing? | Jeffbullas's Blog | Social media influence tips |

When it comes attracting customers online content is king. Jeff Bullas provides and insight into the 4 key goals in content marketing. Click on link for full article.


We consume information with an almost manic obsession. In most homes the 50 inch plasma high definition television is babbling on in the corner enticing us to watch and listen while cooking, cleaning or chilling out.

We jump in the car and the radio or GPS is informing us as we drive to work or as we head off to the shops.

At work the computer monitor tempts us with high definition photos on Facebook or an online news stream filled with a torrent of multimedia content.

Escaping media while out and about is now almost impossible as walking down the street is now an exercise in collision avoidance with 3.5 inch screens filled with apps distracting most of the population.

We live in a noisy world of three screens with digital media content that is hard to escape whether it is television, computers or a smart phone.

The lonely printed newspaper is now often just reserved as company for the weekend coffee as most media moves online.

Digital Media will Dominate by 2020

It was predicted as far back as 2008 that digital media would dominate by 2020. This momentum is accelerating and content is fast moving out of the offline closet and onto a digital screen near you.

This has been confirmed by new research from the Isobar/Carat global report that digital media will consume 80% of media usage.

The explosion of numbers in this digital and increasingly mobile media consuming world are headlined by these facts

On Christmas day, 6.8 million smart phones were activatedIn the last week of 2011, 1.2 billion apps were downloadedThe Guardian Newspaper gets 1 million page views per day via Facebook due to its Facebook app which was downloaded 5 million times with half of those being under the age of 24In 2011 YouTube had over 1 trillion video views

If the majority of your content is not being created for online viewing then you need to listen to these numbers.

Challenge of Content Creation

Creating content for this social online world is a constant challenge and what to write, record and produce comes down to time and resources.

If it is a text based article it needs a good headline, a enticing opening paragraph and an easy to read structure so people will not click away.

If it is a video it needs a professional persona and in a world with short attention spans the message needs to be delivered in seconds not minutes.

The Old Spice videos are typically 20-30 seconds!

4 Key Goals for Creating Content

The ultimate goal of content marketing is to be so engaging that your customers will eventually buy, but before you get that far you need to achieve one of these 4 foundational objectives to attract interest, increase page views and maintain reader loyalty.

1. Educate

This type of content is often prefaced by a headline that starts with “How” . People’s thirst for knowing how to start a blog, market their business or solve a problem that is consuming their attention will always be content worth creating and sharing.


How to Create a Twitter Marketing Strategy that Rocks

5 Lessons from Coca Cola’s New Content Marketing Strategy

10 Reasons Why “Liquid” Content Should be in your Social Media Marketing

2. Inform

Keeping people up to date with the latest news was the domain of the newspaper, trade magazines or television. Today the blog or social network such as Twitter or Facebook is the source.

Remember with this type of content it will quickly become old news and only has a certain shelf life.


Apple makes Huge Announcement about Twitter

6 Social Media Networks to Watch in 2012 [Plus Infographics]

Google+ Sets New Growth Records

3. Entertain

Entertainment is quite often best done by video and you only have to view a Coca Cola ad or a funny video to appreciate the marketing power of entertainment . It doesn’t have to be a video and entertainment can also be a media type that informs and entertains.Infographics can also be included in this category. Humour is one of the vital components in this category.


Test Your Breath – The Stench that Stole Christmas [Video]

10 Reasons Why Ducks Just Don’t Get Social Media

20 Stunning Social Media Statistics Plus Infographic

4. Inspire

So educating, informing or entertaining when creating content is vital in your mix of content but one often overlooked goal is to provide “Inspiration“.

This can be a challenge but inspiring people to be better, to push their limits or to be successful should be woven into your content.

This content can be examples of other successful people that have overcome adversity people or creative examples that showcase others achievements.


The 10 Best Facebook Campaigns

The 10 Secrets Of A Successful Social Media Blog

Choose a Dream

These types of content can stand alone or they can be integrated into one post or woven together.



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Introducing the Content Quality Quotient | Social Media Today

Introducing the Content Quality Quotient | Social Media Today | Social media influence tips |

A great article by Dave Slovin to improve your content. (click on the headline for full article)


Is your content the cream of the crop, or crap?

I’ve seen a lot of online discussion recently about the quality of the content that we’re including in our websites, blogs, and other communications. Is it educational? Does it speak to the right audience? Does it speak English?

When a friend asked me last week to comment on his new website copy, I pulled out a list of criteria that I’ve been using for a few years and got to work. After ripping apart his website (sorry), I realized that this list was a good tool for anyone to use when evaluating pretty much any content.

Since I’m in marketing, it needed a cute name. So here it is – the Content Quality Quotient, or CQQ for short. Here’s how it works. Review an example of your content (blog, white paper, article, presentation, etc.). Then read the following ten statements, responding to each with True or False.

The content addresses a broader topic or issue than my specific services cover.A reader (or participant) will understand the point of the content within the first 5 seconds, and derive some value within 30 seconds.A typical client will understand this, meaning it’s not too technical.If someone read this and didn’t become my client, that person would still derive some business or personal value.A reader would be perceived as helpful when forwarding this to a friend or peer.None of these sales words appear – sign up, act now, offer ends, price, features and benefits, credit cards accepted.Other than maybe a small logo or boiler plate (bio at the end), my firm’s name does not appear in the main content.There is at least one client quote for each firm associate quote.My competitors’ services would also apply equally well to this topic.A reader will likely have comments or questions worth sharing with others, other than, “Where do I buy?”

CQQ Scoring Guide

If you answered False to any one of these statements, time to start looking for a new job. Just kidding... Every business situation is different, so use these guidelines as a starting point. Add or change and store the combined list as your firm’s own CQQ. Before you publish content in the future, make it someone’s responsibility to check it against the CQQ as a standard part of the content creation process.

Act Now - Huge Features and Benefits

When you develop and use your own CQQ, the quality of your content will improve. You will find that prospective clients are more interested in your blogs and newsletters. Editors will return your phone calls about publishing articles. You’ll be invited to speak at conferences and host panel discussions. Oh, and people will want to use your firm you because you add value. Imagine that – sell more by selling less.

If you can’t measure it, don’t do it.
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