We all know that social media is critical to every business’s marketing initiatives (especially those in creative industries like craft marketing). Not having active social channels for your business is equivalent to showing up to work without pants; it’s embarrassing and not socially accepted. No one wants to be the idiot who shows up to work in their underwear, but what’s the point of maintaining social channels if they’re not adding value to your business? Well, there is none. You should be using social to do one or several of the following: establishing and growing brand recognition, gaining qualified leads, or improving customer relationships (ideally all three).
With the introduction of social media, we have a powerful tool at our fingertips that can share pieces of content all over the world in seconds. With this being said, social media marketing increases your brand’s awareness. Many small business owners struggle with implementing an effective social media marketing strategy that drives sales (which is what you’re going to learn in this blog).

Chatbots are not only a great way to automate certain everyday tasks, and if implemented properly, your chatbot will allow you to create more personalized experiences for your customers. To do this, stop linking your advertisements solely to your landing pages, and create ads that redirect your audience to a Messenger window with your chatbot. Linking ads to your chatbot will:
As a millennial (but not one of the whiny ones that baby boomers complain about), I grew up in the age of online friendships and followers, which has exploded into a world of digital living. If I want to find a restaurant, I hop on Yelp. Recipes or clothes? Pinterest. Trying to be an adult? LinkedIn. The best thing about these options is that they have already been vetted by other people! I’m going to trust a Facebook friend who recommends a product 1000x more than a description on the product website.
“Over the last two years, the social network has repeatedly tweaked the system to show the top 300 or so items that it predicts each person will want to read,” according to a recent article by the New York Times. “Facebook argues that people prefer to see videos, photos, news articles and updates from their friends and family more than other brands. So over time, posts by businesses have shown up less frequently.” Facebook continues to push for more advertising so if your business wants traction it needs to be advertising. With all of that said you still need to use caution and tread lightly if you’re a budget conscious advertiser because with more and more competition prices are likely to rise. I’d also highly recommend retargeting with platforms like AdRoll because with retargeting you show your ads to people that have already expressed interest in your brand by visiting your site. I often see retargeting ads on the side of my Facebook News scan (i.e. the image below showing ads for two sites which I recently visited).
A platform for social media monitoring, engaging, publishing, analytics and managing customer data. Falcon enables brands to explore the full potential of digital marketing and advertising by managing multiple customer touchpoints on one platform. It allows marketers to deliver more personalized brand experiences based on enriched customer profiles. The platform features a highly intuitive and collaborative UI and is complemented by comprehensive support and consultancy services.

Share your results and set monthly strategy meetings with your different marketing forces within your company to plan for the future. Working collaboratively and taking a step back to brainstorm and reevaluate your strategy can drastically improve your social efforts. Also leverage other departments within your business. Various teams like client services and sales might have stellar ideas for social since they are the people who communicate with prospects and customers on a daily basis.


Share your passions with your community and let people know about your plans for the future. They’ll appreciate the transparency and you’ll increase your chances of positive engagement. To further encourage engagement, consider connecting your discussions to pop culture, current affairs, and (possibly) controversial topics. However, be careful not to come off as ignorant or offensive.
Followerwonk is a Twitter analytics tool used to find, analyze, and optimize for social growth and helps to explore and grow user’s social graph. Followerwonk has features such as search twitter bios with advance drop down search, compare twitter users, analyze data, track followers and sort followers. Followerwonk represents data graphically in the most active times for user’s followers which makes it easy to have educated business decisions at a glance. Followerwonk seamlessly integrates with Buffer to automatically schedule tweets with the most popular times and to analyze interactions with posts which is important for users because when follower count…

Social media marketing is the use of social media platforms and websites to promote a product or service.[1] Although the terms e-marketing and digital marketing are still dominant in academia, social media marketing is becoming more popular for both practitioners and researchers.[2] Most social media platforms have built-in data analytics tools, which enable companies to track the progress, success, and engagement of ad campaigns. Companies address a range of stakeholders through social media marketing, including current and potential customers, current and potential employees, journalists, bloggers, and the general public. On a strategic level, social media marketing includes the management of a marketing campaign, governance, setting the scope (e.g. more active or passive use) and the establishment of a firm's desired social media "culture" and "tone."
We also try to look for content that will last, not just trend for a week and disappear. If you are able to produce content or develop insights that will stay relevant in the industry, these are gold! For us, social media content does really well on—surprise!—social media. This tweet was posted in mid-June and I’m still seeing it being retweeted even now.
Instagram has proven itself a powerful platform for marketers to reach their customers and prospects through sharing pictures and brief messages. According to a study by Simply Measured, 71% of the world's largest brands are now using Instagram as a marketing channel.[64] For companies, Instagram can be used as a tool to connect and communicate with current and potential customers. The company can present a more personal picture of their brand, and by doing so the company conveys a better and true picture of itself. The idea of Instagram pictures lies on on-the-go, a sense that the event is happening right now, and that adds another layer to the personal and accurate picture of the company. In fact, Thomas Rankin, co-founder and CEO of the program Dash Hudson, stated that when he approves a blogger's Instagram post before it is posted on the behalf of a brand his company represents, his only negative feedback is if it looks too posed. "It's not an editorial photo," he explained, "We're not trying to be a magazine. We're trying to create a moment."[63] Another option Instagram provides the opportunity for companies to reflect a true picture of the brandfrom the perspective of the customers, for instance, using the user-generated contents thought the hashtags encouragement.[65] Other than the filters and hashtags functions, the Instagram's 15-second videos and the recently added ability to send private messages between users have opened new opportunities for brands to connect with customers in a new extent, further promoting effective marketing on Instagram.
While SocialOomph does indeed have a free plan, the features are limited and mostly lean towards Twitter management. On the free plan you can do things like schedule tweets, track keywords, shorten URL’s, and manage up to five Twitter accounts, but some of the more sophisticated features require a paid plan. If you’re looking to manage multiple social platforms aside from Twitter you will need to pay to play.
Every social media conversation surrounding your brand is important. And the more it spreads across the social network, the better your “reach” becomes. So reach is nothing but a metric that lets you understand how far you are able to connect with your audience. It gives you a fair idea of the potential size of your audience, which obviously gives you clarity on improving your approach.
AgoraPulse is a Social Media Management and CRM platform that enables agencies, businesses and marketers to manage all their social media messages, schedule and publish content, identify key influencers, monitor social channels, and get stunning reports all in one easy-to-use dashboard. AgoraPulse currently supports Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Google+. Here are six features that customers love most about AgoraPulse. 1 - Social Media Inbox for each account with real time tracking of incoming messages 2 - Incredibly flexible publishing options for queued, scheduled, and requeued posts. 3 - Advanced analytics delivered in PowerPoint and CSV reports with 1 click. Unlimited reports included with every subscription. 4 - Automatic moderation to rid accounts of spam and to easily assign incoming messages. 5 - Audience qualification and ranking to instantly build meaningful business relationships. 6 - Team workflow features for better collaboration and customer service.

Socioboard is a social media lead generation toolkit for businesses which enables users in managing social media accounts, analytics and reporting. The features of Socioboard are smart inbox, prompt feeds, auto RSS feeds, Google analytics, sentiment analysis, advanced scheduling and publishing, unique social discovery, in-depth analytics and reports, effective and efficient engagement, constant real-time monitoring, team collaboration tools, social CRM and helpdesk integration. SocioBoard official app has an extension of the SocioBoard Core application on iOS and Android which lets users manage social feeds, complete social and brand monitoring from anywhere, send updates to all of user’s social networks, schedule,…
5. Define communications strategy. In the social media era, a continuous communications strategy is necessary to engage your audience through the many channels available. Key issues here are defining the types of content value you offer through different social channels and the frequency. Integrating different digital channels including email marketing through a social media marketing hub is also a key issue here.

Optimize your profiles: Fill out your social profiles with all the information your customers might want and try to claim the same username on every platform, especially a unique tracking link to your website. Have a clear bio that describes what you do and what you’re about (this is essentially your digital elevator pitch). Also be sure to have an avatar and cover photo wherever applicable. You can use Canva to create these in the right dimensions for each channel you’ve chosen.
NetBase is a Social Business Platform that global brands and agencies use to power brand building, grow businesses and connect with consumers. NetBase processes millions of posts across the social web in 42 languages, faster (9x) and more accurately (50-70%) than alternatives. The platform enables brands and agencies to deeply understand customer behavior, emotions and intent in real-time, giving confidence in making actionable decisions that accelerate growth. The advanced patented technology gives clients access to purchase intent, new audiences, and contextual brand emotions that link to shareholder value. The intuitive UI, simple non-Boolean search, and complete and flexible functionality works ‘out of the box’, and includes history, geo and depth that the biggest brands in the world now rely upon.

Make a comprehensive list of the tools you need (e.g., social media monitoring, email marketing and CRM), services you’ll outsource (e.g., graphic design or video production) and any advertising you’ll purchase. Next to each, include the annual projected cost so you can have a high-level view of what you’re investing in and how it affects your marketing budget.
We all know that companies harness the power of social media the way gossip magazines rely on word of mouth for the latest on the celebrity front. If used correctly, organizations can reap all the benefits of social media management software. For businesses, joining online conversations does not only inform existing and prospective customers of their brand, it also allows users to glean information about the competition. It essentially makes an industry a smaller place for all players.
Google Analytics is the one tool that manages our social media. Why? Because the data we gather from analytics focuses our efforts on the social media platforms that are driving traffic and conversions. Did we receive a ton of traffic from Reddit in the last month that converted to subscribers? Did we have a negative ROI on our Facebook ad spend? Google Analytics provides these answers and more.   - Brett Farmiloe, Markitors

Buffer is a very popular social media scheduling application. The tool makes it easy to share content and automatically schedule the distribution to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+. Now it works by staggering content throughout the day. Buffer lets you add content to your queue without worrying when to post it or how frequently to post it. Buffer also gives you the Analytics about each post which lets you quickly see what ideas are working and what aren’t.
SMhack is a social media marketing platform which lets users monitor, post, and collaborate without switching programs. SMhack has features such as engagement monitoring, task management, reporting, performance analysis, and works smooth with Google Analytics and Slack to ensure there will be no manual data entry. SMhack will not simply monitor social media posts, comments and tags, but DMs and conversations too, where it responds to whatever conversation thread in seconds which protects both the users’ brand and strategy allowing users to react without leaving the platform. SMhack is an amazing publishing tool to manage and post content and schedule…

Rob Watts is PCMag's Business Analyst, writing reviews and features for a variety of business applications. He brings years of experience in editorial insights to the role, having previously worked as an editor for Keypoint Intelligence, an independent test laboratory for document imaging hardware and software. He spends his free time cooking and g... See Full Bio

Scheduling: Some social media solutions enable businesses to schedule posts through the use of content calendars. They also allow for the anticipation of message releases. Content can be published at times when audiences are most likely to catch them. These mostly free templates eliminate the need for spreadsheets, which are the usual tools used in planning social posts.
Socialinsider. A social media analytics tool that analyzes the social media strategies of your competitors, Socialinsider enables you to better understand your rival’s operations so you can beat them at their own game, from content published to which ones are boosted the most. It covers popular social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. With its advanced machine learning algorithms, this solution competently handles all the grunt work in data collection, automatically delivering insights on a silver platter.
1: Build a community and inspire action. Your followers should be people that you interact with and maintain a witty, relatable, and fun relationship with on social media. Stop selling your soul to gain followers, instead look to grow engagement. Brainstorm creative ways to keep your followers intrigued by creating truly powerful social media campaigns that will spur your audience to participate.
Where does it fall down? It has to be with the feature list. Buffer is a social media scheduler, and that’s about it. Their business plans have some analytics, but in reality, the platform doesn’t have the same robust functionality to that of Agorapulse, or even Hootsuite. The best thing Buffer has going for it is its marketing, and they do that better than anyone!
First and foremost, you should always encourage conversations and keep communication lines open. Make engaging with your brand as easy and compelling as possible. To do this, contribute to your community consistently. Valuable communities can require huge amounts of time and effort to develop, so before you get started be willing to commit to the work.
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