All posts tagged social media

How I plan to use the new Facebook Timeline features

Facebook changes

Facebook rolls out changes to business pages on March 30, just next week. Eek! I manage so many Facebook pages, this means major work for me as I make updates and decide how to utilize the new Timeline feature. As I’m gathering articles on tips and best practice’s for Facebook’s new timeline, I thought I’d share them with you as well.

Cover Images

With a size of 851 x 315 pixels, this space puts on the pressure to utilize it in a big way! So far, here are some of my favorite cover images:

Great timeline design for Facebook

Clean Facebook timeline design

Pinned Posts

Now you can feature a specific post to be displayed at the top of your page each week. I can foresee clients having a hard time choosing the most important post of the week, but I think it will get easier to choose after watching our analytics and getting a better idea of what posts pull the most interest.

Apps

Apps will no longer appear in tabs to the left, but will now be across the top and feature thumbnail images. There’s only one way I can imagine displaying these apps–matching icon images for each. Here’s the example I’ll be following:

Facebook design featuring matching icons for the apps

Star Top Stories

Highlight important stories by selecting the star icon. I’m eager to see how this works and what affect it has compared to other features.

Milestones

Publish key moments over time using the milestones feature. As a business, it takes a bit more creativity for marking milestones than it does on a personal page. I like Ketchum’s suggestions of using milestones to commemorate reaching a certain number of likes, grand openings, company news, and winning awards.

Other great new features:

Friend activity–see which of your friends is interacting with this business page.
Private messages–finally a company and a person can private message each other if the person follows your page.
Scheduling posts–Facebook is finally providing this feature after competing with apps like Hootsuite and Buffer.

Articles on Facebook’s new features for business pages:

Guide to Facebook’s New Timeline

6 Big Facebook Changes that Every Marketer Needs to Understand

How to Use the New Facebook Admin Panel

4 Important Tips About Facebook Timeline for Brands

Amazing reference inforgraphic by Jon Loomer

Timeline dimensions

I can’t wait to create some new portfolio-worthy Facebook pages!

Jenny Erb, Marketing Consultant

 

 

 

Client recognized for social media achievements

Land O'Lakes growingtogether® MagazineOne of my former clients, Premier Companies, was recently recognized for being a leader in social media marketing within their industry. Land O’Lakes (yes, they do more than make butter) covered their story on page 17 in the winter issue of growingtogether® magazine.

 

 

Welcome page Facebook design for local agricultural cooperative Website design for agmarketing
Truck wrap design for oils and lubricants Paper newsletter cover design for customer communications

It took a lot of effort to get Premier Companies on the social media map. I enjoyed and disliked agriculture marketing for the very same reason–the industry is behind times on marketing trends. It’s challenging as a marketer because customers and companies alike are slow to adapt to new ways of communicating, especially when such value is put on face-to-face communication in the field (and I mean that literally–in a soil-turned, growth-promising field of crops). But at the same time, I found this part exciting as I got to pave a path in agmarketing for building customer relationships through an online presence.

Custom opt-in email for ag and energy customers

Congrats guys on getting the credit you deserve for your marketing efforts!

Jenny Erb, Marketing Consultant

Celebrity sightings and Hoosier pride–pregame Super Bowl fun

Posing in the Super Bowl Village downtown Indianapolis

Nothing’s ever flared my Hoosier pride as much as seeing Indianapolis transform into all things Super Bowl as 2012’s host. Despite spending the evening with thousands of visitors throughout Super Bowl Village, I’m humbled by the relaxed and friendly demeanor exhibited by the crowds. Above all, it makes any native feel proud to overhear compliments of our Hoosier hospitality.

Rumors have run rampant concerning celebrity sightings in Indy this week. Yet many of the rumors have no proof or photos to back their validity. Nonetheless, we set out tonight in hopes of catching a glimpse and losing ourselves in the excitement of seeing someone famous. We spent a lot of time hanging outside of St. Elmo Steakhouse, though never saw anyone famous coming in or out. And it’s not for a lack of trying. My husband and his friend held nothing back when catching a glimpse.

We tried really hard to spot a celebrity in Indianapolis' St. Elmos during Super Bowl celebrations

Anytime I walked by someone who was posing for photos or giving autographs, I took a pic. Though I must admit, I have no clue who these people might be!! Let’s play a game–see if you can help me name people in the following photos…

 

And just about when I’d given up all hope of seeing a celebrity I knew, I heard my husband squealing–yes, squealing–with excitement and then bam–just chilling hear an alley was Kim Coates, actor from one of our favorite shows, Sons of Anarchy. What an awesome guy! He was so polite about taking a photo, asking if we were fans of the show and entertaining us with small talk.

Famous actor Kim Oakes, star of TV hit Sons of Anarchy, was spotted during Super Bowl festivities in downtown Indianapolis

Despite a lot of the online rumors being false, I super enjoyed searching Twitter hashtags like crazy to follow the excitement of the Super Bowl festivities. It’s exciting that just a plain and simple person like me and be apart of something huge by simply using a Twitter account. I’m glad to see so much promotion and excitement over using #SB46 and #Social46 to stay connected on the latest Super Bowl news.

Jenny Erb, Marketing Consultant

Pinterest–a list of social media marketing resources

Jenny Erb on Pinterest

Those who know me well know that my top love after marketing is crafting. Watching Pinterest rise to the status of a top social media outlet is a dream come true, as I see my personal and professional interests collide. Pinterest is such a creative outlet (or inlet?) for creatives like me, providing stimulating ideas for crafting, handmade tutorials, decorating, event planning, cooking recipes, fashion trends, and so much more. Since the New Year, it’s gained a lot of publicity as it’s popularity has become evident. Businesses are scrambling to figure out how Pinterest can fit into their social media strategies. The best yet is this infographic created by Monetate, providing ideas on how you can use the social photo sharing website to promote products, build community, and drive website traffic and conversions.

An inforgraphic on Pinterest's status in social media marketing

Before you wonder off, see some of my own finished Pinterest projects on my personal blog and be sure to find me on Pinterest.

Here are more articles on how to incorporate Pinterest into your social media marketing:

Complete Pinterest Guide | SEO and Traffic Generation With Pinterest

Pinterest become tops traffic driver for retailers

Smart brands: get on Pinterest NOW

Is Pinterest right for your business?

Curate your brand’s content with Pinterest

Pinterest is growing like gangbusters

Pinteresting Trend in Social Media

A guy’s guide to Pinterest

How and why to use Pinterest

Optimizing your Pinterest photos for SEO purposes

10 Pinterest ideas with SEO benefits

Using Pinterest for business–5 must-reads

Pinterest–11 ways to leverage for business marketing complete with infographic below:

Using Pinterest to market your business

 

Jenny Erb, Marketing Consultant

I’d rather use social media than watch the Super Bowl

Indianapolis Super Bowl has large impact on social media

By no means am I a football fan, but I do however love social media. Host city Indianapolis is striving to make football history by making the experience one of a kind through a large focus on social media. The Host Committee is creating a social media command center that will interact and coordinate mentions of the Super Bowl across multiple social media platforms, providing tips such as parking, things to do, etc.

Here’s the top reasons I’m excited for the Indianapolis Super Bowl:

  • Watching social media take a big giant leap forward
  • Learning from advertisers and marketers and seeing how they create interactions during television’s most publicized event
  • Seeing how marketers handle this volume of an engaged audience
  • Finding new local marketers to follow via the Social 46 planning committee
  • Anticipating how all these events will change the industry

Indianapolis Monument Circle prepares for Super Bowl

This means for me that I can watch the Super Bowl unfold before my Twittering eyes without having to turn on my television. I can participate, cheer, and interact with other fans on a whole new level. Which is the vision of the Super Bowl Host Committee. It will be fun both for visitors to Indianapolis and folks like me who will be participating from home. With an app such as the official NFL Mobile Super Bowl Guide, users can see interactive maps of Indy, find restaurants, and all sorts of tools.

Advertisers are catching on too–Chevrolet is launching an app to give away 20 new cars and 6,000 prizes during the Super Bowl. Expect to see many of the Super Bowl commercials featuring Twitter hashtags among other calls-to-action driving traffic to social media outlets.

Social 46 – follow the Indianapolis Super Bowl in Social Media

Labeled Social 46, all these efforts are powered by a committee of Indiana’s best marketers. How cool to see so many creative minds come together for one project. Something this big could largely influence future event organization forever. Super Bowl might just be one weekend of fun, but it’s impact will be much longer lasting. Be sure to join in the fun–here’s a list of popular Twitter hashtags to look for:

And be sure to join the Indianapolis Host Committee on Facebook as well!

 

Jenny Erb, Marketing Consultant

Cause marketing exemplified by social media

A Facebook page is a prime example of how to use social media to find a missing dog

2011 was a good year–not just for us, but we also spent a fair amount of time working on philanthropic projects, most of it built around Facebook pages. Just this week, I helped a desperate friend launch a Facebook page called Operation Bring Bo Home to help her family find their missing dog. The page hit almost 80 likes in two days (I know, not national news but it certainly impressed me). People all over the state are leaving messages on the wall volunteering to organize searches or to distribute fliers. I’m so eager to see how this page plays out.

Other efforts have already come to close, showing high results. I helped a client create a Facebook page for a local charity. The campaign involved collecting donations to use towards toilet paper, the charity’s largest need. We set up online donations via Paypal, linking from the Facebook page. In over just five months, we managed to raise $3,154–enough to purchase 8,861 rolls of toilet paper. The most fun came from witty copywriting for the toilet paper campaign, using slogans such as, “just roll with it,” and “join the movement.”

During the Holidays, I helped promote a fundraiser for a ministry in Kenya that rescues orphaned children. The event organizer brought back a market’s worth of goods from her visit to Kenya, so I photographed the items and created a logo and branding for the event, as well as fliers, postcards, etc. We used the Facebook page for sharing photos and coordinating RSVPs for the event. Sales from the items totaled over $4,200.

In a similar fundraiser, I helped coordinate a jewelry party to raise funds for Heshima, another Kenyan organization. The jewelry was handmade by mothers whose children receive free therapy services from Heshima for their special needs. Again, I took photos, created logo and branding, as well as fliers, postcards, and email invitations. This event raised over $2,800.

Lastly, I also manage a Facebook Page for my neighborhood. I haven’t done much with it, but hope it grows throughout the year. There’s really about one thing my neighborhood is known for–our annual kick-butt garage sales. I’ve been attending them since a was a child. For one weekend of the year, our country neighborhood is packed to the rim with people and excitement. I’ll be counting on the Facebook page as a major outlet for promoting the garage sales and expect to see a boost in followers during that time frame. Currently, I have an email list sign-up featured on our Facebook page. Next time, I plan on creating a downloadable map for the garage sales, as well as local tips, such as the location of the nearest ATM. My neighborhood also boasts a lot of small business owners (like yours truly) and I’d like to see it used as a way to promote the businesses–something to work on this year!

The very essence of social media is exemplified by cause marketing and fundraisers, and vice versa. And I love how you don’t have to fly out of country and feed the poor to make an impact. It’s simply offering my talents of marketing and social media to make a difference. Now back to Bo–if you’re in Indiana, please be sure to like this page. If not, maybe stop by and leave any creative ideas you have for using social media to bring Bo home.

Use social media to create volunteer marketers

We Are All Weird by Seth Godin

I had the pleasure of working with Jay Baer of Convince & Convert on a few projects in the past and love following his blog.  Today he highlighted some inspiring excerpts from Seth Godin‘s recent book, We Are All Weird, concerning the ways a company approaches social media.

Jay sources a quote from page 34 of Godin’s book, commenting on how to turn customers into volunteer marketers for your brand by deepening interests.

“If you want to sell $900 handmade rifles to obsessive collectors, the easiest way to grow your sales is to grow the market of obsessive rifle collectors. That means that marketers evangelize this particular weirdness to those who might be entranced by it.” –Godin

To quote Jay, “The objective isn’t to breed new customers, but rather to increase the temperature of current customers from luke warm to a roiling boil.” Jay goes on to say that we should use social media not just as an advertising outlet but to tell how our products or services are doing amazing things. “Build a culture of accomplishment around your offerings, rather than a culture of availability.”

I love this mentality because it challenges marketers to dig deeper and leverage social media to a fuller potential. Jump over to Jay’s blog and read the full article.

What Facebook’s new changes means for your business

If you haven’t heard already, Facebook is releasing major changes to it’s interface on Sept. 29. Profiles will have customizable options, appear in a timeline presentation, and have the ability to add social apps displaying the your life activities on a daily basis. You can read more about it here.

Meanwhile, what’s this mean for businesses marketing themselves?

I’ve heard that Facebook is working on making their new platform friendly for pages, but as of now the new release does not apply to business pages. But the way you’ll market to Facebook fans will definitely be changing. The following is a great list of resources from fbforbusinessmarketing.com for further reading. In a nutshell:

Getting someone to “Like” your business page isn’t enough. Now more than ever, you’ll have to make sure your business is posting relevant, valuable, and timely content. If not, your posts won’t show up at the top of someone’s news feed.

Keep your page visible by continuing to do things that cause interest and engagement.

From fbforbusinessmarketing.com:

What Facebook’s Changes Mean for Marketers, by Todd Wasserman at Mashable
“The big loser? The “Like,” which will have a smaller role in marketing, industry analysts say.”
“Since users now have more control over their news feeds, brands with boring or irrelevant updates will have lower visibility.”
“…consumers will be creating a “digital autobiography” in which brands will have to integrate themselves…”
“…apps will become more of a vehicle for branding..”
“the “Like” is “a little less relevant now,” and … marketers will have to work harder to earn their place in news feeds”

Facebook Enhances News Feed and Introduces Tickers, by Pamela Vaughan at Hubspot
“So what specifically should marketers do? First, … make sure your posts in social media are relevant and personal for your target audience. Second, … be sure that every post you publish is both optimized with your target keywords and is made publicly available.”

Facebook Subscribe Button: What It Means for Each Type of User, by Meghan Peters at Mashable
“In the coming weeks, you’ll be able to migrate page “likers” to profile-update subscribers…After the migration is complete, you will lose all page content. The biggest advantages? Profiles are easier to update via mobile than pages and people are prioritized over pages in search.”

4 Strategic Changes for the Facebook Platform and Open Graph, by Kim-Mai Cutler at Inside Facebook
The changes are:  “diversification beyond gaming and marketing, interests added to the social graph, developers can more easily get users to share their activity, and developers can focus on three user acquisition points on the platform: timeline, news feed and the ticker.”

Facebook Combines Most Recent and Top News Into a Single Feed, by Josh Constine at Inside Facebook
“Rather than having to choose between tabs, users will automatically see Top News content first if highly relevant updates have been published since they last checked Facebook, and see Most Recent content first if they’ve been visiting frequently. A Ticker in the right sidebar will display a firehose of real-time updates that users can click to expand and engage with.”  See screenshots and explanations.

 Facebook to Disable “Send and Update” that Let Pages Reach Fans Directly Through Messages, by Josh Constine at Inside Facebook
“These Updates often went unseen since they were delivered to the rarely opened “Other” Facebook Messages inbox. Rather than have Page admins waste time using tool that didn’t perform well, Facebook decided it would be best to remove it.”

Facebook Launches a Recommendations Bar to Keep Users Reading on Sites by Eric Eldon at Inside Facebook
“The new plugin lives at the lower right corner of each browser window of a page that has the plugin installed. It floats down as users scroll, basically like how other toolbars work. When a user first loads a page — say, an article on CNN — the bar is collapsed and only shows the option to Like the page. But as the user spends more time reading the article and scrolling down, the plugin will expand and show additional articles to read on the site based on the criteria below.”

How to Use the Facebook Timeline, by Josh Constine at Inside Facebook
Find “all the new features available in Timeline, how to control what’s displayed, and discuss how Timeline will impact users and the rest of the site.”

What Should Page Administrators Do After F8? on AllFacebook
“Facebook pages will eventually have timelines for business. This was not announced, but it is inevitable.”
“Business Pages will use verbs other than Like.”
“Pages will benefit by Ticker and GraphRank.”
“…creating an app on the platform is the best way to benefit from the new changes.”

Will Timeline Ticker and GraphRank Break Facebook Marketing? by Brian Carter at AllFacebook
“Does that change how we market? Probably not.  Fundamentally, these ranks serve to tell Facebook when to tell your connections about your activities (either as a profile or a page).  So if you continue to do things that cause interest and engagement, you will continue to get visibility.”