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10 Rock Star Social Media Management Tips for Maximum Effectiveness

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

Rock Star

Social media is a tremendous opportunity to build your company’s brand, exposure, sales, and customer-loyalty…not necessarily in that order! But regardless, it’s an incredibly important aspect of your overall Online Marketing mix that needs to be handled and looked after by people who are going to take pride in the management and strategy that’s implemented. You need a real rock star running your social media strategy or it won’t be as effective as it should be. Lame people just don’t work for social media! I personally don’t think this aspect of your corporate strategy should be outsourced to an agency (except ours) because the staff they put on the project isn’t likely proactive enough, friendly enough, or customer service oriented enough to do a great job. You social media management is just that important! I have seen countless examples in the past year or so where companies are outsourcing social media when they could do it much better internally with the right people and principles in place. I have put together some social media management principles which should take no more than an hour a day to accomplish and do a tremendous job!

1. First you have to decide what staff you can allocate to the project. Who will be posting and who will be monitoring. You want to coordinate your efforts and ideas. You should meet weekly for a ½ hour and discuss what the strategy is. Make sure they are friendly and outgoing with a really positive, up-beat attitude. Once you have a great social media strategy in place you can start running it like a rock star!

2. Sign up for a Ping.fm account and set-up your Facebook Fan Page and Twitter account to receive the posts. That way you can post once and it will go on multiple social networks. Ping.fm holds over 30 social networks but only a few are really necessary in my opinion. But you should make sure your company is signed up for most of the social networks out there that Ping.fm posts to.

3. Decide how many posts per day and who will be posting them. I recommend 5 a day, but you can do more if you have enough valuable content to share and it’s working well getting people to interact. Posting suggestions:
- 1 unique article a day focusing on tips from your blog (outsource your article writing or write internally). Link to suggested products from the blog post with a special offer or coupon promotion.
- Poll your Fans once a day, ie “What is your favorite thing to do in the Summer?” or “where do you like to travel during your summer vacation?”..stuff like that related to your company niche or in general. Then monitor for replies and Likes. Answer replies and thank for likes immediately. Keep the conversation going every time.
- 1 Featured product post per day from your site or on a service you provide, with a special offer included.
- 1 quote per day from a respected authority in your field. Always ask, “What does everyone think about that?”
- Posting an article from a respected 3rd party source is OK too, as long as it’s not a competitor obviously.

4. Use Hootsuite to monitor the responses to your posts and to respond quicker. It’s a great tool for managing multiple social networking accounts and staying completely on top of all the conversations going on. Response-time is everything! Don’t wait to respond, do it immediately! People love that.

5. Answer all posts by Fans to your wall immediately, including nights and weekend! (It usually take a couple seconds) If you aren’t committed to being there whenever you need to be then find someone that will. It takes 2 seconds to respond to a wall comment or tweet response, so make sure your phone is set-up to notify you of them as they happen so you can be as responsive as possible.  Agencies surely won’t be working nights and weekends monitoring and responding. The Internet never sleeps, so don’t put a typical 9 to 5′er on it. Or you can put a few people on monitoring the responses and wall posts, including customer service agents once they are trained how to respond.

6. Run Monthly contests using tools like Wild Fire App and Woobox to build your fans and increase viral sharing. Choose a monthly sweepstakes or contest budget and plan ahead of time to roll it out and do it professionally. Sweepstakes can be sent to all your customers with a nice HTML email stating, “Enter the [companname] May Sweepstakes for a chance to win a $500 shopping spree!” Or whatever prize you think will get people’s attention like an iPad. This should be promoted to your customers via email and on your Order Confirmation page and confirmation email. You can also design a graphic and promote it on your site to capture more visitor information into the sweepstakes or contest. Wild Fire App has a really cool website footer bar that all your site visitors will see so they can enter the sweepstakes or contest. Woobox is nice because people can gain more entries into the sweepstakes by having their friends enter, which makes it go more viral. Sweepstakes and contests are an absolute MUST to build your fans and go viral, otherwise it will grow painfully slowly.

7. Social sharing of blog posts – once a new blog post is added to the site’s blog, set about syndicating it socially. Here is a an article of mine with some content syndication and sharing tips.

8. Facebook Advertising – run a small, controlled Facebook Fan advertising campaign targeting your demographic and competitors companies in Likes and Interests. See how many fans it builds and then scale accordingly. You can NEVER have too many targeted fans. Quality is everything with fans.

9. Interact and Engage – be very proactive your your social media management using every opportunity to interact with fan and engage with them. This is how loyalty is built! Keep up the hype and excitement, there is nothing worse than boring fan page postings.

10. Join Fan Pages – your social media managers should be fans of 100′s of other company’s fan pages themselves so they can get good posting and interacting ideas. Join some of your biggest competitors fan pages and other big brands, since they are usually on the cutting-edge because they have staff and resources to put behind it.

Social media management should be handled in-house by caring, friendly, proactive staff that want to do a great job and represent your company to the fullest. If you outsource this, you are at the mercy of whomever the agency puts on the task and that person may or may not be any good or have a good strategy in place. An internal staff member can definitely do a phenomenal job at managing your social media with a few great strategies in place and a willingness to do a good job for the company. Make sure they have some writing skills and keep tabs on their posts so they are consistently excellent. If you just don’t have the internal resources then you might have to outsource, but otherwise allocate some of your resources to focusing on your social media and watch it grow and be fruitful for you! Thanks and let me know if you have any comments or suggestions. Thanks!

How to Effectively Grow Your Facebook Fan Page

Friday, August 12th, 2011

Hey everyone! I hope your week is going well. Facebook represents a tremendous opportunity for any business or website to interact with people, customers, prospective customers, and others with whom you would like to start an interactive relationship. Building your Facebook Fan Page and growing your fans are absolute musts in this day and age for any company, website owner, business owner, or blogger. You can never have too many fans because they always can be re-marketed to later with specials, updates, promotions, and interesting news. Not to mention share your content and promotions with their friends to grow your exposure and traffic. I wanted to put together some great ways to build out your Facebook Fan Page and really start to grow it and leverage it.

1. Advertising on Facebook – one of the best ways to build your Facebook Fan count is to actually advertise on Facebook for fans. This is particularly effective because you can target your ads based on people’s Like and Interests, as well as their demographics, which makes your ads really targeted and relevant. For instance, if you run a Jazz music organization, you can target your ads to people that like Jazz on Facebook. Advertising for fans costs money per click or per thousand ad impressions, so you have to make sure you control your budget and plan your strategy wisely. I highly recommend to my clients and companies I know to keep an ad campaign for fans running at all times to keep up the branding and fan acquisition. You have to try various likes and interests to see which pulls fans best at the lowest cost, and you should change up your targeting periodically because your ads can get burned out. So keep it fresh and it will pull in targeted Fans really well for you all year long. Not to mention all of these new fans are likely new eyeballs that you can turn into a customer or loyal advocate by interacting well with them going forward.

2. On Your Site – Promoting the Facebook Fan widget on your site is a great way to expose your fan page content, with a Like button, right in the layout of your site. This works really well for blogs because most have a side bar that the widget can be dropped into relatively easily. Regular sites can drop the fan widget into their articles section sidebar or put the Like button somewhere prominent on their Homepage. This allows you to capitalize more so on your web traffic by turning visitors into fans and grow your fan base. You can also drop the Facebook “Follow Us on Facebook” button on your site either in the header or footer and that will attract some fans for you as well. Also, the Facebook Like button, Recommend button, Send button, Facebook Connect, and Facebook Comment box, are other great Facebook social plug-ins you should be incorporating into your website. Tying Facebook into every aspect of your website and customer promotions should be the goal to really leverage the sharing and traffic you can gain from it.

3. Your Customers/Members/Subscribers – marketing your Facebook Fan Page to your actual customers or members is a must. You can send a dedicated email blast to all your current or previous customers/members and let them know to “Like” your Fan Page. You can run a Fan Page promotion or contest to your customers, subscribers, or members. Companies give away prizes and free merchandise to the winners of their contests and promotions, which will increase the number of Fans that enter to try to win. It’s usually effective because people are always trying to win something and it takes little effort usually to participate in the promotion. I recommend WildFireApp to run sweepstakes and promotions on your site and to your email lists to convert them into fans. It tracks everything and is really inexpensive. You have to use some kind of strategy like this otherwise your fans just won’t grow at a fast enough rate to keep you happy.

4. Auto-responders – including a link to join your Fan Page, or enter your sweepstakes/contest, in your website’s email auto-responders is a great idea because these emails are usually pretty basic without must substance other than thanking the customer for their purchase or thanking them for subscribing to the newsletters, so dropping a text link into these type of emails can take advantage of this opportunity to build your fan base. Make sure to periodically review your auto-responder emails to make sure they reflect your current promotions and other info you want to express to your customers. Many companies don’t review their auto-responder emails frequently enough or at all, so make sure to keep them fresh!

5. Messaging Your Facebook Friends – one of the of the easiest way to build your fans is to ask your Facebook Friends to come and join your fan page through a mass friend invite. This can be done in the left column of your Fan Page by clicking “Suggest to Friends.” Doing this is a great way to really boost your fan page numbers. Also, you can suggest to your fans and friends that they do the same thing, which can really help it go viral. There are tools that allow you toselect all your friends at once, so you don’t have to select them all by hand, so make sure to use that to your advantage.

6. Growing On Its Own – when you start employing all these methods for growing your fans and they start clicking the Like button, their friends will see this and could click Like as well. So the more you market your Fan Page, the more it can go viral by all the friends of your new fans seeing this. Also, when you post status updates on you Wall and they Like, Comment, or Share your status update, their Friends will see that and could Like your fan page as well. Once you start promoting your Fan Page like crazy, this spill over effect will really increase and your Fan base and traffic will grow big time.

These are but a few ways to grow your Facebook Fans. Make sure to put a lot of planning and effort into growing your fans and it will pay big dividends down the road. If you haven’t yet started your Fan Page, you can do so by clicking here. Make sure to get really into managing your Fan Page and engaging your fans into responding to your post. Here are some tips on effectively managing your fan page. Now go out there and build out your Fans and start interacting. Thanks for reading and make sure to leave a comment or share it!

How to Maximize and Grow Your Facebook Fan Page

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

Hey all! I wanted to touch on some ideas related to managing and growing a Facebook Fan Page. If you haven’t created your Facebook Fan Page you can do so here. Maintaining a Fan Page is great idea for any business, club, organization, cause, personality, or anyone that is looking to gain fans for a group. The nice thing about a Fan Page is it grows over time and can be “worked” to make sure it’s a fun and exciting place people want to check out frequently and put in their opinions and ideas. The point of build a Fan base is so you have people you can interact with that can become passionate fans and representatives and tell everyone they know! Here are some tips to make sure you are leveraging Facebook Fan Pages to the utmost:

1. Welcome Screen – Having a customized Welcome tab is a great idea to dress up your Facebook Fan Page to new visitors. It’s nice to have because you can add functionality to it as well as instruct your potential new fans to “Like” your page. There is a nice free tool for adding a Welcome screen to your fan page here.

2. Left Side Graphic – Another area that you can customize is your left side graphic of the Fan Page. Most companies will make a nice tall graphic that is customized to advertise their current promotion or to be a seasonal graphic of some kind. You can play around with your left side graphic and keep it timely which tends to work best.

3. Discussions Area – The Discussions area of your fan page should really be a primary focus of building out your Fan Page with more content and topics. The really nice thing is the Discussions area tends to rank well in Google, so any topics you put up there will get into the the search results and can lead to traffic to those discussions and eventual new fans or even business. Make sure to encourage your fans to participate in your discussions by messaging them to do so and also running contests and promotions, like “whoever makes the best response wins a gift card.”

4. Email Messaging Your Fans – Messaging your Facebook Fans is a great way to keep them engaged with your current content and promotions. In order to email message all of your fans at once you have to go into your Fan Page under: Edit Page (under left graphic) > Marketing > Send Update. You can then write your subject and content and email all your fans. Make sure not to email fans too much and send them good info or they leave your fan page.

5. Fan Page Advertising – Probably the best way to build your Facebook Fans is to advertise on Facebook itself for more fans. The nice thing is you can target who will see your ads by people’s Like and Interests. So for example if you are advertising your Flower Shop’s fan page you may want to run ads to people in your store’s zip code that are Liked to Flowers or 1800flowers, so you know the people seeing your ad are interested in what you offer. There are many things you can target so you have to try different Likes and Interests and see which creates more fans for you at the least cost. I have found that fan page advertising is a tremendous way to build your targeted fans. Facebook fan page ads are on a cost-per-click or cost-per-thousands impressions (CPM). You have to see which “backs-out” to the lowest average cost-per-click (CPC) and then run with that.

6. Posting Status Updates – Once you have some fans you can post your status updates which will keep your fans informed about all the current happenings you want to share with them. You can post links, webpage urls, photos, videos, and any other media that you want to share with your fans. The nice thing is when your fans Like, Comment, or Share your status updates their friends see that and it can go viral if it’s compelling enough. Don’t hammer your fans with too many status updates or they will leave your fan page. Posting links in your status updates can put it into the News area of people’s status updates which can get more views and action. I recommend no more than 2-5 status updates per day, if that.

7. Contests and Promotions – the best part about running a Facebook Fan Page is that you can run fun and exciting contests and promotions to your fans and get them moving into action. Many companies will do free giveaways, special coupon promotions, and survey contests to engage with their fans and increase overall interaction and sharing. Companies like Rita’s Italian Ice have been able to leverage free promotions to build their fans into the hundreds of thousands. Every company or group will be different but everyone should be running contests and promotions to try to motivate their fans into action and create excitement.

8. Mass Friend Invites – If you know me, you know I love mass friend invites. It’s the best way to auto-select and blast all your Facebook friends about your fan page. The cool thing is all your new fans and do the same thing and it can really increase exposure if you are able to get your fans to invite all of their friends to your fan page. There is a little piece of code that should be pasted into the main browser window after you have selected to invite your friends, then you just write a little message and blast way! Here is a great article that explains how the process works.

9. Interacting with Fans – whether you mange 10 fans or 100,000 you should be seeking to interact with them as much as possible. Make sure whoever is managing your Fan Page is really friendly and proactive. Also because they are representing your company or organization they should be really competent at writing and responding. Make sure to be as friendly and outgoing as possible because that approach is always well-received. Every opportunity to interact with a fan should be maximized and taken seriously, as they could become a vocal representative for your Fan Page.

These are some suggestion for building out and improving your Facebook Fan Page. It takes a lot of work to do it properly but will pay big dividends in the end. Make sure whoever is managing your Fan Page is a competent, pro-active, passionate, and super friendly person that takes it very seriously and does a great job. Check out what your competitors are doing with their Fan Pages and then emulate and improve upon that. I hope you enjoyed this little article…feel free to leave me your comments and suggestions…and of course share it! thx!