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Monthly Marketing Paceline (Round Up): February, 2014

Paceline with defn

Welcome to the first edition of the “Monthly Marketing Paceline” – my turn to pull those articles and writers that I found to be especially helpful, insightful, or interesting this past month.

This first edition will actually reach back as far as September, when I first thought about doing a monthly “round-up” style article.

Featured in the month’s break-away group:

  • Ways to Promote your Blog
  • Internal Linking Strategies
  • Decrease your Bounce Rate
  • Improve your “About” Page
  • Publishing on LinkedIn
  • Facebook Engagement Tips

25 Smart Ways to Promote Your Latest Blog Post by Rebekah Radice (@RebekahRadice)

Great list! After the experience I’ve had with I Triberr, I found the other blog communities especially interesting.

“Writing your latest blog post and hitting publish is just the beginning when it comes to growing your subscription base.

If you truly want to gain the attention of your target audience (and Google), then you will need to spend time promoting your content in multiple locations.”

“Over the years I have compiled a detailed list of where, how and when to promote your latest blog post.”

Read the complete article . . .

 6 Ways You Can Use Internal Website Links for SEO by Jennifer Bourn (@jenniferbourn)

I’ve overlooked both the importance and number of opportunities for Internal Links. You’ll want to go make some changes to your website after reading this article!

“Internal links are important to the success and integrity of your website or blog because they give your visitors and the search engines more ways to move (click) through your website and access the content they are looking for. But the value of internal links goes beyond ease of website navigation.”

Read the complete article . . .

Website Bounce Rate: Where Low Numbers Rule by Lisa (@Lisapatb)

Do you get questions about “bounce rate”? I know I do – after reading this article I now have far better answers.

“It is interesting to see which have the lower bounce rates – for me it’s Google organic and other blogs and websites. Returning visitors also lower my bounce rate and new visits seem to track higher. This means I have some work to do on those new visits. How is your website bounce rate measuring?”

Read the complete article . . .

6 Ideas for Your Blog’s “About” Page and Why they Work by Daniel Sharkov (@DanielSharkov)

Never take your “About” page for granted again. This article will have you heading to your “About” page to make changes.

“But then again creating an about page is simple. Turning it into an effective conversion tool however is a bit trickier…”

Read the complete article . . .

Game Changer: LinkedIn Professional Publisher by Peg Fitzpatrick (@PegFitzpatrick)

I’m really excited to experiment with this latest LinkedIn option. Peg does a great job of explaining it in this post.

“LinkedIn is opening up our publishing platform to our members, giving them a powerful new way to build their professional brand. When a member publishes a post on LinkedIn, their original content becomes part of their professional profile, is shared with their trusted network and has the ability to reach the largest group of professionals ever assembled.”

Read the complete article . . .

How to Build Your Email List with Facebook Offers by Denise Wakeman (@DeniseWakeman)

I’m not a huge fan of marketing on Facebook, but this is a great idea to gain reach for free!

“. . .my experiment has introduced 51 new people into my world. Over time, some of these new people may become customers when I introduce a new Visibility program, and a few may become mentoring clients. And I did not have to spend a dime on ads to get my offer in front of them. ”

Read the complete article . . .

Simple Strategies to Get More Engagement on Facebook Without Paying for Facebook Ads – by Erin Tillotson (@ErinTillotson) – featuring Denise Wakeman

This video is a “Facebook Makeover” for Denise Wakeman. Erin provides several interesting and easy ideas for using Facebook.

Thanks for reading! Hope you found these articles as helpful as I did. As always, comments and questions are both welcomed and appreciated!

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New Cover Photo Policy for Facebook Pages

The big news here is that Facebook has actually done something to make it easier (albeit, only a little) to market on Facebook!

Facebook banner image

When Facebook introduced “Timeline” with the larger cover photo, they also developed a set of guidelines as to how those cover photos could be used by business owners and marketers.

Until recently, those rules were as follows:

Covers may not include:
i.    images with more than 20% text;
ii.    price or purchase information, such as “40% off” or “Download it on socialmusic.com”;
iii.    contact information such as a website address, email, mailing address, or information that should go in your Page’s “About” section;
iv.    references to Facebook features or actions, such as “Like” or “Share” or an arrow pointing from the cover photo to any of these features;
v.    or calls to action, such as “Get it now” or “Tell your friends.”

However, the new guidelines (in place since March 6, 2013) allow page administrators more freedom in designing the cover photo for their Facebook Page.

The New Facebook Policy

“All covers are public. This means that anyone who visits your Page will be able to see your cover. Covers can’t be deceptive, misleading, or infringe on anyone else’s copyright. You may not encourage people to upload your cover to their personal timelines. Covers may not include images with more than 20% text.”

As you can see, Facebook has eliminated the restrictions on price and product listings, contact information, and calls to action.

Take Away

Although text is still limited to 20% of the image, the new changes do provide for branding and promotional opportunities that weren’t previously available. You could add a:

  • website address
  • blog address
  • phone number
  • list of products or services
  • monthly special
  • price list
  • call to action
  • list of other social media contact information
  • and . . .?

Do you plan on making changes to your cover photo? If so, what will you change?

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Facebook is for Likes Not Leads

Qualified LeadsIs your business on Facebook? How’s that working out for you? No, seriously- I’m curious.

900 million people on Facebook . . . how many leads have you gotten from them?

Having read just about everything under the sun about marketing on Facebook and with three years experience marketing my own business and several of my client’s businesses there (and other social media platforms), I’ve come to some conclusions about Facebook’s potential as a small business marketing tool.

Honestly, this is something I’ve been thinking about for awhile now, but it took a great article by Ken Mueller a couple of weeks ago to actually get me to put “pen to paper” so to speak.

The truth is, most of those 900 million people aren’t there to be marketed to. And frankly, Facebook doesn’t make it that easy for businesses to connect with them.

I think Facebook can be very effective for some businesses:

1. Famous: Your company or brand is well known. Pepsi, Victoria Secret, and Skittles don’t have any trouble drawing people to their Facebook pages. Even if you are only “niche” famous it can work – you just need to have a following that will search for your brand.

2. Engaging with Existing Clients: If the goal for your Facebook page is to engage your existing clients, and you have clients that are enthusiastic supporters of your brand, you can build a strong community around those clients. I have seen this work well for some service businesses.

3. Local: If you have a business that has a very “local” focus, and there is an active Facebook community in your area, it can be an effective marketing platform. We have a small bookstore in our area that does a great job of connecting with community members, using invites to announce author readings, and posts information about new arrivals at the bookstore.

4. Advertising: The Facebook paid advertising platform can be a good way to bring visitors to your Page and to grow your community. However, it does cost money, and you have to create very narrowly focused ads to ensure that you’re actually building a community that is interested in your product or service, or face wasting that money.

Reasons to have a Facebook Page:

Improved Search Engine Placement: If there is strong competition for your business name, even within non-competing industries, a Facebook page can appear high in Search Engine rankings making your business more searchable.

I once put a proposal together for a company called Crystal Solutions – the first of their many SEO challenges was that you could not find their company even by searching the company name – there were too many other businesses with that name to compete against.

Improved SEO: Social is becoming, and will continue to become, more influential in search results. Among the leaders in affecting SEO from a social media standing are Facebook likes and shares.

But . . .

I am not arguing against businesses having a Facebook Page, in fact I recommend it for most businesses, however it is not a case of “build it and they will come”. Most businesses will not find Facebook to be a significant or meaningful source of leads, and will be challenged simply to build a following and develop any kind of engagement with that following.

If this has been, or is your experience on Facebook, you’re not alone . . . and you don’t need to abandon your Facebook Page. However, you may want to re-evaluate your goals, and make sure that your expectations are realistic.

If you’re expending your limited marketing resources (money or time) on Facebook, with the goal of developing internet marketing leads, you may want to re-consider your marketing options to get the most from you investment! There are better options for many businesses!

Having said all of that  . . . we offer curated Facebook Marketing articles on our Facebook page. If you are going to be on Facebook, and want access to some of the best Facebook Marketing articles on the web, we try to deliver everyday!  We’d love to see you there!

What has your Facebook experience been? Have you been disappointed in the results or has it been a goldmine of leads for you?

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