Social media is a fast-growing, ever-changing industry, and it can be a challenge for those in the know to keep up with the ever-evolving lingo and social media terms. Every industry has its own language, and here are some of the basic terms and definitions of social media:
Social Media Terms
Bitly – A free service to shorten URLs, making them easier to share on social media platforms. Here’s Whole Foods using a Bitly in their recent tweet.
Blog – This is a “Web Log” that individuals or companies use to share commentary, such as updates, graphics, or videos. Zappos has an active company blog.
Bookmarking – The process of saving a URL in order to access it at a later date. There are different bookmarking platforms, but Google also offers a spot to bookmark sites.
Hashtag – A tag used to categorize and organize comments on Twitter. Always preceded by the pound symbol “#.” Starbucks asks users to tag Instagram photos with the hashtag #starbucks, and they use a lot of different hashtags in their Twitter feed. Here’s one they use often #ExtraShotOfGood.
Infographic – A graphic with information and data shared easily through social media sites. Here’s an example of How to Create an Infographic from Mashable
Klout – A social media analytics service that gives you a score based on how involved and influential you are in the social media world. Check out these Top social media influencers klout scores.
Like – A way to show approval on Facebook. You actually click a “Like” button. You can “like” a brand, which allows you to receive their status updates in your news feed, or you can just like a specific status update. Here you can choose to “like” Disney World’s page or “like” this status.
Links – A hyperlink, a way to connect directly to another web page, accessible by one easy click. This blog post is full of links to other sites, but here’s a link to the Splash Media YouTube channel, just for emphasis.
Link building – A search engine optimization (SEO) tactic where you strategically link to other sites (usually blogs) to increase your own site’s search engine ranking.
Meme – A thought, idea, joke, or concept that is shared online through social media sites. It’s typically an image with text, but can also be a video. The Grumpy Cat meme won Meme of the Year at the 17th Annual Webby Awards.
Microblogging – Content sharing platforms that restrict the amount of data that you can share. Twitter is considered a microblogging platform, as is Tumblr.
Permalink – The specific URL to a web page or blog post. The links within this blog post are all permalinks to specific pages.
Podcast – An episodic series of audio radio, video, PDF, or ePub files subscribed to and downloaded through web syndication or streamed online to a computer or mobile device. I get most of the podcasts I listen to from iTunes.
RSS Feed – “Really Simple Syndication” is a format used to easily share frequently updated content, such as news sites, blog posts and videos. Here’s a link to the Splash Media blog feed, where you can subscribe and receive our blog updates through email.
Sentiment – The attitude of user comments related to a brand online. Amy’s Baking Company has recently received extremely negative sentiment from Facebook users for their alleged bad customer service. (read through the comments to see what I’m talking about)
SEO – Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the volume or quality of traffic to a website from search engines via unpaid or organic search traffic. Google defines SEO.
Skype – A service that allows for text, audio, and video chats between users. If you haven’t “skyped” someone, you don’t know what you’re missing.
Tag – Is a term assigned to a piece of information so that you can describe the information and find it again. (Commonly used in blogging) At the bottom of this blog post by The Pioneer Woman, you can see she has used the tags “dogs” and “random critters.”
Traffic – Is the amount of data sent and received by visitors to a web page. Most websites monitor how many visitors they receive and how many pages are viewed. Google Analytics is a good tool to measure your web traffic.
Tweeps – A nickname referring to Twitter Followers.
Tweet – A message sent through Twitter that is no longer than 140-characters. Surprisingly, you can say a lot with very few words. Here’s an award-winning tweet from the Mars Curiosity Team.
This glossary of terms just touches a small portion of social media terms, but they are some of the most critical. Did we miss any? Are there any social media terms out there that you don’t understand?
Back in January, we asked you what six seconds could do for your company branding strategy with the advent of the new Vine app. Now, months later, we have our answer. According to Mashable, Vine has become one of the top iPhone apps of 2013 and one of the most popular social media networks since the 2010 launch of Instagram. In fact, Vine was the number one app in the U.S. App Store on April 9, 2013.
Six seconds is not much time to grab your audience’s attention. You have to be concise and creative. The good news: Vine videos are cheap to make and the perfect length of time for our ever-present short attention spans. And some big brands have been having a lot of fun exploring this new social media medium:
- USA Today – Every day, USA Today shows a quick teaser of the day’s headlines and topics.
- Lowes – Lowes Vine videos are really useful home improvement tips and lifehacks. Have a stripped screw? Use a rubber band with a screwdriver, no problem! They’ve even given their campaign a hashtag #lowesfixinsix.
- General Electric – General Electric shows off their innovative brand personality in their Vine videos. They were one of the first brands to dive into Vine and ramp up engagement, leaving viewers curious about what they’ll do next. Wanna know what happens when you combine milk, food coloring and dish soap?
- Rolling Stone – Rolling Stone Magazine has huge engagement. They often make videos asking the question, “Guess who is on the cover?” with a magazine covered in sticky notes or cigarettes or something that gives a clue to the answer hiding underneath.
- Trident Gum – Trident uses Vine to showcase their gum in unique ways. A never-ending pack of gum? Trident magic tricks? They’re definitely having fun.
- Urban Outfitters – Urban Outfitters uses their Vine account to display their products in fun ways. They share their new clothing lines, trendy collections and store displays … as well as bulldogs and spinning models.
It’s all about brand personality. These six brands have not only worked their brand personality into Vine, they’ve incorporated Vine into their marketing pretty effectively, don’t you agree? Which company uses it the best? What other companies are using Vine effectively?
Part of every company branding strategy should include promoting your business on the major social sites—Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. In fact, LinkedIn was specifically designed as a business-based networking platform, so it makes sense to use this site in particular to build the reputation of your brand within the business community and provide it with some legitimacy and visibility for associates and potential clients. Like every other aspect of the branding process, though, the capabilities of LinkedIn can be squandered if you don’t take advantage of them or if they’re used incorrectly, so creating an entire process around the site is required if you expect to reap maximum benefits for your business.
Creating a Company Branding Strategy using LinkedIn
Your company branding strategy for LinkedIn should begin with a well-designed and relevant company page. This page will be the focal point for your business going forward, and at a minimum, should include a link to your business website, links to key staff members (who must also be members of LinkedIn), and links to your Facebook and Twitter pages. In addition, you should take full advantage of the pre-built pages within the company page to advertise career opportunities and recruit candidates, promote your brand through the products and services page, and expand your reach by linking to affiliated groups, featured groups, industry partners, and even competitors to promote a sense of fair play as part of your company branding strategy.
Since your company page is your image on LinkedIn, it should be inviting and eye-catching. More importantly, however, the information you present there must be valid, up-to-date, and a showcase of your industry knowledge. Ensure that all links included on your page are legitimate and functional. Your profile, and the LinkedIn profiles of all of your lead team members, should be complete and current. Keep your page updated with frequent postings of news feeds about your company, comments from your other social media sites, and industry-related news.
An often overlooked yet essential part of your company branding strategy on LinkedIn is participation. The site, albeit business-based, is still a social site, and members are looking for opportunities to interact with your business by providing insights, feedback, and suggestions. You should give them every opportunity to do so by proactively participating in polls and groups to promote your brand and display your knowledge in various subject areas. Answering questions posted in the group forums is an excellent way to highlight your brand without appearing to be self-serving. Any interesting content you run across can and should be shared with connections and groups to entice people to follow you.
If you want to use LinkedIn as part of your company branding strategy, you must keep your pages fresh and filled with appropriate content. You must be prepared to interact with the people that want to provide feedback to your business, good and bad, and use it to build positive relationships. Perception is everything in the branding process. Remember that everyone else on the site is looking for networking opportunities just like you are, and the more active you are in the process, the more people will find you to be a worthwhile associate, expanding your circle of influence and building your brand.
To learn how LinkedIn, and the other social media sites, can promote your business and enhance your company branding strategy, contact Splash Media. To learn more about us, visit our website. You can also check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Does your social media strategy include video content? It should! Because video has become one of the most effective ways to market on the web. It allows visitors to experience your brand message with very little effort and increases the length of time people stay on your page, giving your brand message longer to sink in and an important indicator of page quality.
Social Media Strategy Video Content Benefits
Support your current and potential customer base with valuable content that will be helpful to them. Most people would rather watch how something works then read or hear about how it works because it’s easier for them to understand. So, use video to explain how to use your products and services, answer FAQs and share industry tips and tricks. Don’t use video to directly sell to your audience, but instead think about how you can educate them through your video content. You can then use use that video content in your social media strategy to convert visitors into buyers.
Once you’ve made a video, you can get a lot of play out of it by sharing it across multiple platforms. You can host it on your website, publish it to YouTube, share it through Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, and even email it. The trend of more and more people accessing online info through their mobile devices is only increasing, which makes a quick video an ideal avenue to spread your brand message. When it comes down to it, video marketing campaigns can easily reach consumers across multiple channels.
Don’t discount the power of video search engine optimization in your social media strategy. Make sure your video content includes main key phrases that your business is trying to rank for in online search results. Keep in mind what words are your potential customers using to find you and follow through once you’ve completed the video, to optimize all descriptions and titles with those keywords to increase SEO.
You really don’t need a very large budget to operate a video SEO marketing social media strategy. Here are some tips to keep in mind when you start filming.
- Keep your video short. 90 seconds is the optimal length. You don’t want to lose your audience’s attention.
- Make an emotional connection. Tell a story. Give something people can relate to or root for.
- Ask a question that viewers will want to answer in a comment section or through a social media channel. This increases engagement and encourages conversation.
Video marketing appeals to an audience, conveys messages quickly and can be a very creative way to get your message across, and highly relevant and engaging video content will appeal to mobile users and stationary consumers.
Pinterest, a visual site that acts as a virtual bulletin board, is the latest site requiring companies to adjust their social media management. The site allows users to post or “pin” links to websites to a personal page, and organize the board into categories, making it easy to locate the website at a later date. Pinterest already has 40 million users and that number grows daily.
Social Media Management
There are several tips for using Pinterest in your social media management. The site is much more visual than other social media sites, so it is important to focus on the photos and graphics that appear on your company site. Users of Pinterest “grab” photos and graphics that appeal to them, so consider using covers of company white papers, visuals from blog posts, pictures from behind the scenes of the company or products you sell. When using photos of products, it’s best to use images that show those products in use, such as recipes, décor or activities. Charts and graphs are other visuals that work well on Pinterest, as do photos of happy customers.
Dedicated Landing Page
In order to use Pinterest in social media management effectively, be sure that your pins are associated with dedicated landing pages. Nothing is more frustrating to a Pinterest user than a pin that does not take them to a website that either explains or describes the picture they have “pinned.” Although social media for companies traditionally focuses on bringing users to the company website, few users want to take the time to search through several pages to find more details on the picture they found interesting. In addition, a dedicated landing page enables you to easily track traffic and measure effectiveness.
Interact with Others
To further your social media management on Pinterest, comment on pins posted by others. This provides more exposure and helps other users see you as knowledgeable about certain subjects. Promote your Pinterest content using other social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter. Add a Pinterest icon to your social media links on your website to allow users to share your information with others through Pinterest as well.
Social media for companies continually evolves as new social media sites gain popularity and traction. Although Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn remain crucial to any social media management, Pinterest is a growing phenomenon in the genre that is gaining popularity. For more information on social media for companies, visit us online, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Facebook is a prime example of how social media and business can work together, and there is no doubt that Facebook is one of the most popular forms of social media used by businesses today. However, simply creating a business page, and gathering followers, is not enough for social media management. There are many ways that a campaign using social media for companies can fail.
Social Media and Business
For social media and business to work cooperatively, the business must interact with fans. Fans that leave questions or comments on a business Facebook page expect to receive a response. This is especially true when a customer has a poor experience with a company. The best social media management is to require all comments and questions be answered within 24 hours to keep the interaction going with customers.
Because the main part of social media and business is the “social” part, businesses that rarely update their page will find that people lose interest. Aim to post at least once per day, and remember:
- 70 percent of your page content should be information that your fans will find valuable and relevant.
- 20 percent of the content should be shared content, such as links.
- 10 percent should be promotional content.
Keep Things Light
Although it is a business page, it is important to remember that social media and business does not have to be boring. The occasional lighthearted joke, cute kitten or human interest story will bring followers to the page as well. Just as you encourage employees to have fun at work, social media management needs to include some fun as well.
By keeping your Facebook page current, responding to all comments and questions in timely fashion, even those that are negative, and keeping things light, Facebook can be very beneficial to your company. For more information on social media and business, visit our website. You can also check us out on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Has your business incorporated the Zero Moment of Truth social media strategy? If you’re reading this and thinking, “What is the Zero Moment of Truth,” then clearly you have no idea what I’m talking about. The Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT) occurs from the time a consumer sees an ad or desires a product to the moment when he or she goes online to research and decides whether to make a purchase and where to make the purchase. ZMOT is the new reality; the present and future of marketing.
During the ZMOT, consumers research products and brands, read reviews, watch videos, and browse forums, asking questions and searching for the best options online … all before making a purchase, especially big expensive purchases, but even for the smaller purchases, too. This has become the norm in consumer behavior. The consumers are taking control of the buying process.
So, how do you embrace the ZMOT in your social media strategy and overall marketing plan?
- Make sure you’re part of the conversation. The conversations about your products and industry are already out there, so it’s your job to make sure you are a part of them. Go find those conversations, wherever they exist. They’re in chat forums, review sites, and on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, as well as review sites.
- Make it easy for consumers to contact you. As consumers research, they’ll have questions. Make sure you have answers at their fingertips. Be available via social media, phone numbers, email, and live chat. Consumers may simply move on if it takes too long to find a contact point. Also, make sure your site and your products are labeled and categorized clearly on your site. The information out there about your product needs to be easy to navigate.
- Make it mobile-friendly. Smartphones and tablets have made mobile a large avenue of search and shopping. In Googler Jim Lecinski’s book, What the ‘Zero Moment of Truth Means for Marketers, it states that “on Black Friday, that important Thanksgiving week shopping day last year, fully 20% of all the searches conducted on Google were on mobile devices.” Do you have a mobile-friendly website? How much site traffic are you losing to people who get frustrated with your slow-loading, non-mobile site?
- Make videos. YouTube is the second-most-popular search engine on the Internet, and to make the most of this, it’s a good idea to incorporate product demonstrations, tutorials, and webinars into your social media strategy. Make videos! We’re a very visual-oriented population, so a video is a nice way to make an introduction and say a lot more in a shorter period of time.
- Make Everything Search Engine Optimized. If you aren’t investing in SEO, you’re behind in the game. When consumers Google key industry phrases, are your products showing up? Why not?
Now that you have a better understanding of how the Internet has changed the way consumers make buying decisions, you are closer to understanding what ZMOT is and what steps your business needs to take next.
Does your company need help with a Zero Moment of Truth social media strategy? Have you researched and approached a social media agency for advice? Don’t fall behind with your marketing strategy! Call us at 877.861.0010. Visit our website, and check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
I value great thought curators higher in my social stream than I do thought leaders. Crazy, I know, but it is true. Great curators add value to my life by saving me time, bringing me concepts I would have never found on my own, and giving me a safe place to gain insight I otherwise would have missed.
I despise buzzwords in social media marketing. They just add noise, and the last thing we need in social media is more noise. “Thought leaders” is by far the most ridiculous label that’s in use today. Having a real leadership position on anything takes a cocktail that most are not willing to commit to. Being a thought leader takes a very rare mix of passion, discipline, focus and an insane amount of courage. Even if you have the right mix of content, knowledge and insight, being the leader is not always the most valuable position. Being a curator can be extremely powerful.
Curator comes from the latin curare, meaning to “take care.” Taking care of the information that most affects your audience is just plain awesome. Imagine being the one that your audience trusts taking care of what they need to know, when they need to know it, and how they should think about it. That is a position in my audience’s life I would want.
I am an addict of all things Indiana Jones. Since I was young, the stories, movies, and comics of Indiana Jones stirred my soul. Exotic travels, palpable danger at every corner, historical finds and the fight of right vs. wrong were themes that I latched onto. The character that most intrigued me though was not Indy (or Short Round for that matter) but Indy’s longtime friend, the Marcus Brody, the museum director.
Marcus is the character we candidly do not know enough about. Indy’s adventures to find some of the world’s most important historical items took the limelight, but it was Marcus who wanted the world to know why they were so important. Brody cared desperately that the world know the context of the treasure. He wanted people to experience history. See it. Touch it. Study it. Brody knew the world would be a better place by having these artifacts organized and in a place where history could come to life. The Ark of the Covenant sitting in a government storage facility had to have killed Brody. Having such a profoundly important artifact sitting somewhere that meant no one could see it, study it, or process the personal meaning it had on them was a crime. Do not commit the same crime by letting your audience miss out on the most important artifacts in your world of influence.
Find yourself a couple of Indy’s for your world. Find those rare people who are out discovering the valuable information for your audience. Once you have those explorers identified, be their Marcus Brody. Be the curator that organizes those finds, puts them in a neatly organized safe place where the world can come study. Protect those finds and give your audience the chance to experience them. Be a great curator of ideas. Your audience will value you.
Businesses embarking on an online marketing campaign can no longer ignore or discount the social impact of Google+ on the marketplace. While initially faltering after its kickoff in September 2011, it has since risen to be the second most popular social media site after Facebook, according to the latest GlobalWebIndex survey [http://globalwebindex.net/blog/]. And whether or not you agree with the analysis (there’s some controversy about the way active users are accounted for in Google applications), there’s no doubt it is a rising star in the social media realm, and one that will have to be reckoned with soon, if not immediately. Google+ is here to stay.
The rising popularity of Google+ means any future online marketing campaign should absolutely include this user base in its distribution. Google+ has benefitted from Google’s ability to integrate the social app into its other popular apps, including YouTube, Google Maps, Google Docs, Gmail, and Google Search. The mobile version of the application is especially appealing to users, because it is simple to navigate and visually-based, making it ideal for smartphone and tablet users. Google+ also has Hangouts, a feature that allows groups of users to video chat together, which is exclusive to Google+.
Why Should Your Next Online Marketing Campaign Include Google+ Users?
If you’re still on the fence about the legitimacy of Google+ as a social media destination and user base, and whether or not a marketing campaign directed at those users would generate any traffic, consider these statistics collected by TechCrunch and Google Blog:
- Google+ is growing at a rate of over 600,000 new users a day.
- The Google +1 button gets clicked more than 5 billion times a day.
- The top category of Google+ users is “Student.”
- Websites that use the Google +1 button get over three times as many Google+ visits as sites without the button.
From the standpoint of an online marketing campaign, you should also consider some of the other features unique to Google+ that can prove beneficial to your online marketing strategy. The Hangouts feature, with its video-chat groups, provides an excellent forum for small, targeted marketing campaigns and face-to-face focus and feedback sessions with small groups of followers. The list of Google+ communities is extensive, providing most if not all businesses opportunities to find an appropriate audience with which to engage. Having a presence in those communities can help with marketing efforts and brand recognition as you move forward.
Like it or not, Google+ will be a player in the social media game. Choosing to include this user group in a future online marketing campaign is, of course, up to each business individually, but ignoring such a large and growing presence may prove detrimental to your business. Getting on board now may not reap the huge benefits you want today, but it will certainly put you in a position to learn marketing techniques specific to the Google+ environment and set you up for success tomorrow, when other businesses are clamoring about the need to develop an online marketing strategy for Google+.
To learn more about online marketing techniques specific to Google+ users, and see what kind of effect they’re having on the business community today, contact Splash Media. To learn more about us, visit our website. You can also check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
If you’re involved in the social media management industry, then you’re probably very familiar with the Art of Newsjacking. It’s not a new concept, but it’s definitely a bigger challenge to implement with social media’s impact on real-time reporting, news, and content development.
Newsjacking is the method of injecting your brand marketing into current news as a way to generate attention. It’s a chance to get really creative and look at the news from a different angle. Also, there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it.
- Boost SEO
- Attract new readers
- Be a thought leader in your industry
The Right Way
There was a lot of successful newsjacking during the blackout at February’s big football game. Newsjacking done right is a pleasure to read, something that brings a smile to your face.
The Wrong Way
Be mindful of exploiting an event for marketing gain that might offend your potential customers and create negative publicity.
Social Media Management Newsjacking Best Practices
- Be Sensitive: A school shooting, or a natural disaster, are probably not ideal newsjacking events.
- Keep Current: You’ll need to know what’s timely and relevant in order to newsjack successfully. It helps to set up RSS feeds that include major news outlets and industry publications that will alert you when something newsworthy occurs.
- Operate Quickly: Other brands will also try to newsjack the events, so it helps if you’re among the first responders. You want to get in on the action before interest in the story wanes.
- Don’t force it: Stay within your product branding. Don’t force an unnatural connection. Sometimes this is a challenging judgment call.
- Keep it Positive: Try not to be negative. A positive spin will achieve far more beneficial traction from your potential customer base.
- Don’t Copycat: Make sure you aren’t saying what someone else already has stated. Then you’ll just look foolish.
- Include key phrases: Always keep in mind SEO. Use key phrases when you can.
- Don’t Forget to Share: Once you’re ready, make sure that you share your messages across all your social media management platforms.
Newsjacking clearly can have a hugely positive benefit on social media for companies by making marketing interesting and relevant. Social media statistics show that newsjacking gets attention. Look at how many millions big brands spend on Super Bowl commercials compared to newsjacking. The difference in ROI is astronomical!
Splash Media can help you with full service, turnkey social media management solutions for your online brand strategy. To learn more about us, visit our website. You can also check us out on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.