The new Facebook Timeline began rolling out back in September 2011 with the looming unknown date of when all profiles would become Timelines…and now 6 months later we’re still waiting for the mandatory turn over. However, Facebook has said as of March 30th, that all business pages (or fan pages) will take on the new Timeline design. Will you be ready for this massive change?
What changes? Well for starters…you remember that nice pretty welcome page/custom tab/landing page you probably paid good money for because someone told you it was a good idea to have? Well it’s almost worthless now. And yes, it was a good idea to have one, but as of now, the landing pages are the “wall” and you can’t change it. Yet. So my advise to you is to keep what you paid for and sit back and just wait. You can still use it, you just can’t have it be your “default” landing tab anymore. But I have a feeling Facebook will bring it back or something similar to it.
For now, take advantage of that huge piece of real estate at the top of your page. The “cover photo” as it’s called is 851 x 315 pixels and is a great place to showcase your business or products. There are a few caveats though…Facebook won’t allow certain information on the cover photo such as:
1. Price or purchase information, such as “40% off” or “Download it at our website”
2. Contact information, such as web address, email, mailing address or other information intended for your Page’s About section
3. References to user interface elements, such as Like or Share, or any other Facebook site features
4. Calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends”
What else is changing?
1. No more picture strip at the top
2. Only 4 tabs viewable
3. A new “admin panel”
4. Fans can now message the page directly
5. You can now “pin” a post to the top of the page for up to 7 days
6. “Highlighting” a post to make it twice the size as the others
7. Easier to edit your page
8. Custom tab icon pics available
Even though this is the biggest change Facebook has made to pages yet, there are lots of great things about these changes. My advise to you is to dive right in and start clicking around and exploring the new Timeline. It’s actually a lot of fun! You can’t fight the change to Timeline so you may as well learn how to use it!
Social media is a constant, 24 hours a day medium. It never stops. So when it comes to marketing via social media, you can’t stop either. Or can you?
It’s now mid August, school is about to start (for us on Monday) and I have 4 teenagers and a husband who travels regularly for work overseas. My social media efforts have no doubt been lacking the last 2 weeks and this week especially. In fact I have not been on the computer in 2 1/2 days with the exception of my iPhone, and thank heavens for THAT little piece of technology!
I didn’t even go on vacation this summer!
My point is…Well, I don’t really have a point actually but things will be back to normal on Monday, thank goodness! It’s hard to blog, video blog, and play on Facebook and Twitter when I have kids running around screaming their heads off. Oh that’s right, I’m not suppose to let them act like that….well, I’m out numbered. That’s my story and I’m stickin to it!
See ya next week!
The concept is simple…The results are legendary.
Ever wondered what the potential was if you could get your company information out to thousands of people in one day?
Step #1. You pick the day
Step #2. I wear a T-shirt with your company logo or whatever your heart desires.
Step #3. I wear the shirt all day (business meeting, networking meeting, grocery shopping, mall, etc.)
Step #4. I take pictures of myself wearing the shirt and post them to my 7 major social networks (reaching a minimum of 5,000 people)
Step #5. I shoot a 1 minute video of myself wearing the shirt promoting your business and post to YouTube and my 7 major social networks.
Step #6. You share the pics and video to your social networks reaching potentially thousands more.
Step #7. Watch the results.
One of the biggest questions raised by business owners is “Why should I hire a social media manager?“. Many companies enlist in the help of the person in the office who knows how to use Facebook the most. That person is then given the added responsibility to create a business page, post content, answer questions, and so forth. The reality is, if you as a business owner are serious about marketing your business through social media, then don’t you want it done correctly? If you are like most small businesses, you also don’t want to spend any additional funds for it either, which is where the current employee gets stuck with the new job. Social media is one of the most affordable and effective ways to market your business. The problem is many companies don’t trust it to bring them any ROI because it’s a “new” technology. There is never a second thought to run a $500+ advertisement in the local paper, but to put some of the marketing budget into social media takes a little more trust than the old tried and true ways of print advertising. Here are a few reasons to get with the program…
1. Everyone is doing it
Yes it sounds cliché, however with over 500 million people on Facebook alone, over 100 million on Twitter, over 50 million bloggers, and over 300 million YouTube subscribers with an infinite number of videos uploaded each day…yeah, everyone is doing it. Let’s go back to Facebook, the Grandaddy of them all. Unless your target market is males over 75 years old, odds are, they are on Facebook. Marketing 101…go where the people are.
2. DIRTFT (Do It Right The First Time)
My high school senior English teacher taught me that, sad that I learned it senior year but oh well. When you rely on the “most experienced Facebook user” in the office, there is a big chance your business page will not be set up correctly. Facebook does not allow personal profiles to be used for business purposes, yet we see this happen every day. How many “friends” do you have that are actually businesses? Besides, Facebook Pages provide analytics and other features specifically for businesses. Does your favored “expert” in the office know how to use Twitter? Set up a blog? Create a YouTube channel? Know about meta tags? Know about SEO marketing? Know anything about RSS feeds? Customer service? Content marketing? Ever heard of Yelp? Four Square? Pinterest? LinkedIn? These are just a *few* things a social media person should clearly understand to get your business results.
3. Social Media is time consuming
Have you ever been on Facebook? The average person spends 1.5 hours a day! Your social media person should be posting on your Facebook and Twitter site 1-3 times daily. Then of course checking back periodically throughout the day to check on comments, questions, and other customer service inquiries. They should also be checking your blog for comments among other things, as well as Twitter, YouTube, Yelp, Urban Spoon, Google Plus, ect. for comments, reviews, and questions. Does your office employee have the time available to all of this and more in addition to their current job duties?
While some businesses may answer all these questions with, “yes we can do this”, most others will not be able to answer an honest “yes”. It takes money to make money as we all know in business and the #1 expense cut in budgets are in the marketing department. Take a moment and really think about if that is the right move. If you are not where the people are, how will that affect your business? Think of other resources, like can you offer a raise to the person in the office taking on these job duties? Does it make sense to hire a part-timer for social media? Would it be beneficial to hire a contracted employee who specializes in social media? Whatever you do, do something and I’ll leave you with this…
To those who say “It doesn’t pay to advertise”… A man wakes up in his advertised bed to his advertised radio. He brushes his teeth with his advertised toothpaste. He rides to work in his advertised car. When asked “Does it pay to advertise he says “No” until he advertises his unadvertised business for sale. Author: Unknown
Tags: advertising, Blog, bloggers, budget, budgeting, business page, Chanda Gunter, cliche, employee, expenses, expert, facebook, facebook page, Four Square, friends, google, hire a social media expert, independent contractor, intern, labor costs, management packages, marketing, marketing solutions, pro, profile page, ROI, small business, small business solutions, Social Media, social media packages, SoMe, the social network, Twitter, Urban Spoon, Yelp, YouTube
Many business owners are just now realizing how social media can effect their business, so now it’s just a matter of fine tuning what you know and how you are using the tools you already have. Well I have a few tools to share with you that you may or may not know about. These tools will save you money if you have a smaller budget and can save you time and a headache.
Many people are aware of Hootsuite, but if you are not it is an awesome tool for the busy business owner. While Hootsuite can do many things for your social media marketing, it’s main claim to fame is it’s ability to schedule posts on multiple accounts. For example…If you want to post on your business page at noon but you have a meeting, then you can schedule it through Hootsuite and it will post automatically to whichever account or to multiple accounts such as personal profile pages, business pages and Twitter. Hootsuite offers many other services but the beauty of it is it’s FREE for up to 5 accounts! Click here for a video tutorial.
Involver is a great site to find FREE apps for your Facebook business page. It will allow you to link your blog, Twitter feed, Flicker account, YoutTube, you name it and it will add it as a featured tab.
Have you seen some Facebook pages that are all done up like websites? They are called “professional Facebook Pages” or “Welcome Tabs” and are a great way for new visitors to your page to “like” you and want to share your page with others…it’s whats called “curb appeal”. Oreo and Victoria’s Secret are good examples of these pages. Normally to create one of these custom pages, you would need to hire a web developer to write the code for these pages and it will cost you minimally $500-$1500 or more to do this. With ShortStack, you can use one of their templates and upload your own photos, videos, text, polls, and many other widgets all for FREE! If your page likes gets to be at a certain number then you will need to pay a minimal fee to maintain the custom page but it’s a great place to get started for a small budget.
I hope the information on these site have helped you get started on your social media marketing success. If you have any further questions, please feel free to comment on this post, email me at GetNoticed@ChandaGunter.com, or just give me a shout at 435-767-8184.
Tags: Blog, Chanda Gunter, facebook, facebook applications, flicker, hootsuite, involver, marketing, multiple accounts, oreo, oreos, save money, save time, schedule posts, short stack, shortstackapp, small business, the social network, tool chest. social media, tools, tweetdeck, Twitter, victoria secret, victoria's secret, web designer, web developer
If You Build It…Will They Come?
There are so many options out there now days to market your business, with social media being the latest and greatest. But just because you build a website or create a Facebook or Twitter account, does that mean customers and clients will flock to your site? Yes, if you do it correctly. No, if you don’t have all the tools you need to make it succeed. Below are some tips on some of the most popular types of online marketing today.
- Creating a website for your business is a no brainer but can come at a high price. The golden rule is you get what you pay for, for the most part. Websites can cost thousands and look and work great, but most small businesses just don’t have the money for that. Try a WordPress site. It’s a blog site that costs little to no money and can be set up to look just like a website…unless they are a “computer guy”, nobody will notice the difference, or won’t care. The one thing you want to make sure you do on your website is to change the content on a regular basis. Google looks for relevant material and if your website has been the same since 2010, yes I know we are in January 2011, then Google loses interest in your site. Add video and pictures, a weekly blog, whatever you need to do to keep it from being a stagnant site and you are on your way!
- Many businesses are building custom Facebook pages using the “Welcome” tab feature. This is a great tool to make your page look nice and professional but there is no guarantee this feature will bring you new “likes”, customers or business. Facebook and other developers provide you with many useful tools for your Facebook such as tabs for linking your blog, twitter feed, and YouTube account. The bottom line with getting more “likes” on Facebook is to provide good content on your page by giving a healthy combination of useful information for the industry, promoting your business, and engaging your fans.
- Be everywhere you can be! If you only have a website and a Facebook page, then guess where Google will find you? Great, you say? If Google can only reach out to 2 places to find your business, where do you think you will rank? However, if Google reaches out and finds your business in 20 different locations on the web because you are utilizing social media to it’s maximum potential, now where do you think Google will rank you? Exactly!
The moral to the story is this…Just because your website or Facebook page looks pretty, doesn’t mean anything. How does that business communicate with me? Do they care that I am a customer? How do they treat me? Are they just one commercial after another? Do they really want my business or am I just another “like” to them? What have they done for me lately?