• Are you telling your brand story in social media?

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#CelebrateSuccess – Celebrate Your Reviews in Facebook & Google

For social marketers, there’s nothing more coveted than high-quality positive reviews. That’s because reviews help you rank in the search engines, show your best face, and assure potential customers that you are the go-to product or service provider.

The funny thing is, even when we get five stars, we don’t quite know what to do with them. Often those magic words will sit out there on Yelp or Google just collecting dust. Now’s the perfect time to put those hard-earned A+ ratings to work.

Here are five creative ways to celebrate success using your online reviews:

Say “Thank You!”

The very first thing you should do is say thank you. Whether that’s a shout out on the platform where the review was posted or by sending a note or gift, you should thank everyone who takes the time to give a thoughtful review. We like to create social graphics that include the testimonial and then do a shout out and tag the individual or company in the caption – both sharing the love and showing our appreciation at the same time!

Put Them On Your Website

There are various approaches to using testimonials on your site, but whether you choose to create a dedicated page, put them on sidebars, or sprinkle them throughout your content, you should be posting your positive reviews on your website.

Use Them In Targeted Emails

There are many ways you can take advantage of positive reviews in your email marketing. Some of the most popular are adding a positive quote as your email signature, using them to respond to triggering events such as shopping cart abandonment, and crafting a specific message around them.

Profile The Reviewer

What better way to celebrate a review than by shouting out the success of the reviewer. Introduce this angel to your community and see if you can help them succeed. If it warrants, you can turn it into a case study or white paper. Blog posts, press releases, and customer profiles are all good ways to use positive reviews.

Pay It Forward

If you are getting good reviews then you no doubt have a lot of people to thank. Celebrate the people behind the good news by highlighting the fruits of their hard work.

Of course, the above focuses on positive reviews. That doesn’t mean that you should ignore the negative ones. Take them to heart, thank the reviewer, and see what you can do to fix the problem. All reviews are an asset to your business. When they are positive, use them to tell your story and celebrate your success. When they are negative, learn from them.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

#GrowYourAudience – Using the Tools of the Trade in Your Online Marketing

In the world of online marketing, things move fast – so fast that we rarely get the chance to pause and evaluate how we do our work. It’s easy to lose track of all the tools that are available to help us maximize our online marketing efforts.

From social media managers, analytical tools, and other utilities, there are many tools from which to choose from. Some are designed for casual users, some are super techie, some are expensive, and some are cheap. Which ones are best for you all depends on what you are trying to do. But no matter what your skill level or strategy, there are some must-haves. Let’s take a look at five tools of the trade that every online marketer should have in his or her toolbox.

Hootsuite

Hootsuite is a tool that allows you to schedule and post updates to your social media accounts. You can implement and analyze campaigns across all the platforms you use all from one dashboard. Depending on the type of account you have (yes, there are both free and paid versions) you can track a wide variety of metrics to monitor your efforts.

Canva

Canva is a powerful graphics media program that allows you to create a wide variety of marketing pieces using your own designs or pre-designed templates. It also offers the ability to collaborate with other members of your team. Many of Canva’s most useful features are free.

Google Analytics

When you insert a short piece of code on your web pages, Google Analytics allows you to track and analyze your website traffic. This must have tool for any webmaster will help you understand what your users are looking at, how they get to your website, and if they are using your content the way you intended.

Facebook Pixel

Facebook Pixel helps you monitor whether or not the ads you place on Facebook are working. The Pixel is activated by code you put on your website. You’ll be able to analyze the effectiveness of your ads using a variety of metrics.

Cloud Storage

Cloud storage is remote storage space that is made available over a network. Among the most well-known cloud storage is Apple’s iCloud but there are other services available. You purchase storage based on your needs. The service will take care of maintaining and backing up your data in a way that is virtually invisible to you.

There are many tools available to help you work more effectively to manage your social media needs. For many people, having these five tools and knowing how to use them is enough; they can make your life easier, make your team more effective, and ensure that your business is running smoothly.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

#AwesomeInSocial – People Are Searching You Online…What Are They Finding?

When was the last time you searched for you or your company online? Most consumers will start their search online before ever using your company. Reviews, social media interaction, comments left on product pages, website ease of use, and more are key factors in determining whether a new customer or client will do business with you.
When you consider that online reviews are the key to people’s trust in your business, the choice is clear. You have to know what people are saying about you. A recent survey by BrightLocal states that 84% of people will trust an online review the same as word-of-mouth.
This means it’s more important than ever for you to take control of your social platforms. You want those conversations to happen with you and your social channels. That’s not all. Knowing how they find you can help you identify new opportunities to reach customers on platforms that you’re either not using or have underdeveloped. In some cases, it can even help your company evolve to meet the changes of your customer base.
I’ve compiled a list of ways to find out how you’re being searched.
Use Multiple Search Engines
If you want to know how people find you, the best way to begin is by using Google or Bing to see how you measure up. A key point here is to use your browser’s private browsing feature so that your previous searches don’t affect the results. Google uses “Incognito” and Firefox has “Private Browsing” but they both work the same.
Do a search for your business name and see what the first page results are. You’ll likely find your website/blog, Facebook page, review sites like Yelp, online listing platforms like Google My Business, and other social networks.
After that search is complete, you’ll want to try search terms that could drive people to your business. Start with your website. Most website analytics will track the search terms that get people to your site. Compile that list and start searching. Where do you stand in first page ranking?
Next, you’ll want to do a local search for your business using key terms related to your work. This one is easy. Take your most popular key terms and add your town to the end of the search. A repair shop, for instance, would search for “car shop in [town name]”. If you offer particular services, make sure you use those terms as well. Where do you stand?
With this list, you can determine where your business is showing up and note the places where it should be listed, but isn’t.
Social Media
Make sure you use Twitter and Facebook’s search options to see what people are saying about your business. Search your business name first. What do you find? If your business has a more common name, you can add keywords to the list. This is a search you should often perform, since it helps you stay on top of customer complaints and celebrate business successes.

Also, your online presence will play a big factor in the impression you make to anyone searching for your business. What are they finding? Are the accounts current – or have they not been updated in ages? If you have social media accounts active, showing a lack of current content makes the audience believe you are no longer investing in your business. It’s better to not have an account at all then to have one that hasn’t been updated in ages.

If you have been posting recently, does that content coincide with your branding strategy and goals for the current year? Or is it random and confusing for your audience – sharing content that appeals to you but isn’t strategic can be damaging and counterproductive.
Set Up Analytics
You can use Google Alerts to search the web for keywords related to your business. Those results will be sent to your inbox as often as you wish. Social media platforms like Facebook now offer analytics, and you’ll want to keep track of those. Google My Business offers insights for your business listings. As mentioned earlier, you can also set up your website analytics to find out how people are tracking you. The tools are available, so make sure you use them.
Once you figure how they find you, the next step is to make it easier to connect with your business. The key to success is to keep on top of this. Your online reputation and being #AwesomeInSocial work hand in hand in convincing potential clients to contact you and set up a discovery session.
Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!
Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram and the tools to manage them.

#TeamBuilding – Finding the Right SEO Expert



In this high-tech fast-paced world, having a solid SEO expert on your team is imperative to your company’s success. As your small business expands, outsourcing SEO may be a good idea. With all the options out there, how do you find the right fit for you?

What type of work is needed for your company’s site? There are three main types of SEO professionals: independent contractors, SEO firms, and in-house employees.

If you’re branching out for the first time, it’s imperative that you hire an independent SEO consultant to set up an initial strategy. This gives you a roadmap for future SEO employment.

Independent contractors are typically more cost effective for smaller businesses, and can be hired by the hour or by project. SEO firms are companies with teams who work on a contractual basis with clients. Expect to pay a minimum of $2000 for any project with a firm. An in-house employee is usually for a large or rapidly expanding company as it is the most expensive option.

If you choose an independent contractor or SEO firm, there are three types of payment structures: pay by the project, pay by the hour, or a retainer fee (a monthly fee that reserves their time to work on your site).

Whether you choose an independent contractor, a firm, or the in-house option, there are some questions you need to ask to ensure they’re the right fit for your company’s goals. In addition, you’ll be giving them access to your site, so trust is necessary.

  •  How will you determine the keyword target for your site? They should mention an audit of your site, a way to target keywords, and research plans.
  • What is your strategy? They should have a three-pronged approach to SEO optimization: technical, on-page site content, and off-page inbound links. This is the trust trifecta for search engines. Technicalis how easily a search engine can spider and crawl your site. On-page content involves well-optimized keywords and a good user experience, and off-page inbound links should be from respected sites that actually pertain to your site (your vendor, for instance).
  • Do you follow Google’s Best Practices? If they use corner-cutting methods and play it off as fine, this is not the “expert” you’re looking for. “Black hat” processes will get you banned from search engines. It could take months or even years to regain PageRank once you’ve been penalized.
  • How do you track changes and show results? Their SEO reports should include a summary of activities (for both your site and outside influences), search traffic and rankings, as well as conversions. They should provide them on a monthly basis, but some will give a weekly update.
  • Who are your longest active clients? A company or contractor without a sustainable track record of success should be avoided.

Remember, hiring an SEO expert should take a burden off your shoulders, not add to them. If you want some help deciding which option is best for you, or you are looking for a great referral, give us a call. As always, we want to help you #BeAwesomeat what you do!

~ Social Media is changing the way people do business.  Don’t get left behind ~ 

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!
Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.
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