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How to Give Your Business a Social Media Makeover

Making your page look it’s best

Before people go on to your business page and begin reading through your services, price lists or products, their first impressions are going to affect how they spend their time.

Most people respond to colour, shape and aesthetics before they engage with any bulk of text. A magazine article for instance, would need to hook it’s readers with an attractive design, heading and images before they begin to delve into the article. The same goes for your company’s website and social media pages.

First Impressions Count

If a potential customer first sees your brand on social media, then it’s important to give out the right impression. Your ‘social status’ can have a huge impact on your sales and reach of customers, just having an online presence can create many leads to your website.

You need to convey your brand, it’s ethos and your services within a limited amount of time and space. Once you have a strong following on your social platforms, you will be able to share more in depth information about your trade or service, but before this happens, you need to attract them in.

Social Media Graphics

Graphic design is a great way to showcase any special offers, essential information, awards or slogans in affiliation with your brand. The most notable places where graphic design should be used on your social platforms are your profile image and a cover/ header photo.

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It pays off to create a header image that is the correct size for what it is being used for, (Facebook, Twitter, Google+) rather than having a “one size fits all” mentality; doing this will only result in slightly distorted images or having bits cut off the edge. Making sure your cover photo feng shui is up to scratch with not only look better to you, but it comes across more professional to your customers.

Avoid having any text-heavy or overcrowded images on your profile as this will only confuse or overwhelm visitors- which of course is not your intention. Use your brand colours and try to keep all your current images in theme with each other to create a seamless, dedicated look.

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Regularly update your image to reflect your current branding, and use it to highlight any important dates, offers or products.

If you create social media graphics to share on your timeline (for example, a highlighted post on Facebook), keep the same rules in mind. Utilise the space and try to keep it in theme with your brand colours, website and logo.

As part of our social media management services, we can provide you with quality branding and complementary graphic design to be used on your site. Our in-house designer is on tap for creating engaging posts, creative header images and is fully equipped to give your brand a social makeover.

Why not pop us an email to discuss how we could help you get the most from your social media: hello@isaydigital.com

Optimise Your Twitter Profile

First impressions count

Twitter can often be the first place where someone sees your brand online. Whether by a retweet, a hashtag or a search, if someone happens to come across your profile, you want it to be the best representation of your brand as possible. Have your logo and any other usable graphics you have associated with your brand on your Twitter profile.

Branding

It often pays off more to design yourself specific cover photo and background with your company colours, logo and any essential information you want to show off, as it were. Designing a cover photo for your profile using the specific dimensions and size guides will ensure that your image is positioned just how you want it. Remember that a profile image is 81 x 81 px, and a cover photo is 520 x 260 px. Unfortunately the Twitter background isn’t responsive, so how it is viewed will depend on the screen being looked at. Having something simple that represents your brand through a certain colour scheme or pattern will work well on all devices.

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Bio

Your bio is also a very important factor, especially when it comes down to whether or not someone decides to follow your account. If your profile appears in a list, then your bio is the main thing people will see, and will inevitably be how they judge you. Be brief, but not too vague. You only have 160 characters to describe exactly who you are, what you do and your style.

To fully take advantage of the bio, you should be aware that words you have written in there will also help you show up on the search engines. If there is a specific term, key word or phrase you want people to find you with, then your bio is a good place to include it. You can also make use of hashtags in your bio as this automatically enhances your search optimisation when someone uses the same hashtag to search with, but these aren’t essential to being found

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How do people find you on Twitter?

If someone has searched for your name on Twitter, you want to be the first one to come up.

Your account name, sometimes referred to as a ‘handle’, should be recognisable, easy to remember and relevant to your company. Seeing as you’re only allowed 15 characters, your company name might be too long to have as on your account. The best thing to do in this situation is to come up with a witty and or recognisable abbreviation of your name. Take, for instance, the account pictured below, instead of having @marchofthemermaids, @Mermaids_March is more condensed and still gets across the two main words of the organisation.

Who to Follow

Try not to follow too, too many accounts as this can come across rather desperate. Following more accounts than the amount that follow you is however, very normal and expected, especially for someone who’s just starting out on Twitter. Just keep it in moderation, (say a two to one ratio) and only follow relevant accounts to your cause. Follow people that are likely to interact with you as well, as Twitter can get rather boring if your Tweets just get lost in the over-crowded bustle of a famous account. The purpose of being on social media and creating a presence for your brand is to get seen- keep this in mind when posting and choosing who to follow.

Following local people and businesses as well as influential accounts to keep your feed useful, relevant and easy to communicate with.

Overall, whatever colours, logos and branding you do use and whatever you put in your bio – you should always have one thing at the front of your action plan and the top of your mind: your brand values and your social media objectives!

If you are aware of what you need to do to optimise your Twitter profile, you will understand that in order to manage it successfully, you need a routine. Many business owners just can’t find the time to do it themselves or can’t afford to hire an in-house marketer, which is why services such as our Social Media Management and SEO packages exist!

Vanity Statistics Vs Engagement

Do you manage your own social media campaigns?

Many business owners will choose to manage their own social media pages and blogs, which is great for those who have the time to update it. It offers many benefits and gives your readers freshly squeezed news, engagement and company updates straight of the press.

If you don’t need your social pages to drive direct sales but are using it mainly to create more brand awareness and online presence, you will need to focus on conveying a personal social tone to help build customer relationships and build a helpful online community for your brand and product/ service.

Behind the Posts

However, if you do want your social media pages to specifically drive more sales and traffic directly to your website, you will need to know what you’re doing when it comes to analysing your stats. Firstly, you’ll need to come up with a social strategy and a plan of action to help get your social media campaigns underway; prepare yourself to learn about the other faces of your social pages than you at first thought.

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Analytics and Admin Panels

Most major social platforms such as Facebook and Twitter offer a basic Analytics option which allows you to monitor your page statistics. It will show you where your likes are coming from, how much engagement your posts gets, how many people have seen your posts and graphs about general page activity.

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On every Facebook page, if you are a page manager, you will see the Admin Panel at the top, above your cover photo when you’re logged in. You will see sections that look at help you when inviting new likes, keeping track of competitors, post analysis and the option to advertise or promote your page. Twitter has a similar analytics option and you can access it on any Twitter account, via the settings > analytics option.

These offer a basic option and offer no fancy marketing skills, especially in comparison to specifically designed software. But for those of you who are doing it alone, it’s a great place to start. You will learn about the most prevalent areas and the relevant terminology associated with social media analytics.

 

Vanity Vs Engagement

Vanity metrics tends to refer to the things like raw/ organic pageviews, registered users and downloads. Which are all seemingly valid aspects, however they are easily manipulated and don’t necessarily correlate the most important numbers. By the most important numbers, we mean things like active users, engagement, revenues and the cost of getting new customers.

Companies, especially startups, who keep updated and analyse their social strategy regularly and thoroughly, will have much more of an idea of the true state that their business is in.

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The difference between Vanity Statistics and Page Engagement is paramount on social media. Contrary to what many think, likes and retweets aren’t everything and they don’t always lead to sales. Simply having a page that regularly engages with and understands it’s audience is bound to be more successful on a social level than one that has bought 1,000 likes over the internet. Vanity stats aren’t completely useless at all, but just don’t be fooled by them; make sure you have enough further stats to back up your figures.

Once you have an understanding of how the Facebook or Twitter analytics work on your pages, you will probably be relieved by stepping up a gear into professional software. You could consider investing in a premium (usually paid for) program or app. This will give you more information, more options and inevitably help give you more confidence in what you’re posting and the results it should bring.

A previous blog post by us talks about why buying social indicators is a bad idea here if you’d like to find out more.

 

New Year, New Digital Marketing Strategy

Has this Christmas has made you realise the potential of your eCommerce business?

 

With cyber monday, black friday and the likes, it is clear that 2013 has very much seen a rise of online shoppers. As we know, the options are a lot more varied for shoppers these days; with more tablets, iPads, smartphones and laptops, people now have many choices as to how, where and when they choose to shop.

 

2014- the year of eCommerce?

 

Whilst 2013 has seen a definite increase in the use of online shopping, 2014 is set to be even more tech-based when it comes to sales. This will mean that the competition between the quality and how user-friendly websites are is bound to rocket. The competition is already high for eCommerce businesses due to the sheer size of the competition; you’re not just competing with other shops on the High Street anymore, but with companies located on all corners of the globe.

 

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So what are you waiting for?

 

Whether you earned a successful profit from your online sales in 2013 or are reading this to learn how you could improve yours- there are always the same basic steps to keep in mind when managing your website.

 

SEO

 

The term SEO often scares a lot of people off as they assume it’s awfully technical and complicated, and far above their internet knowledge. Which it can be if you don’t know what you’re doing, but it doesn’t have to be!

 

Google is one of the most frequently used search tools in the world. It uses a range of techniques to assess your website, and depending on how it ranks means how far down it will show in the search menu. As long as your website is “Google-friendly” and uses a few basic SEO techniques such as regular updates, is user-friendly, responsive and uses specified keywords your website will get seen.

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We offer a range of specified SEO marketing packages to help get your business to the top of the search engines. Give us a call any time to discuss what we can do help you.

 

Design

 

This is where the competition gets seriously hot. Innovative and modern web design can cost you a fortune and many would say it is worth the cost. Because there is so much choice out there, people really do have the option to pick and choose where they buy their products from. If your website doesn’t fulfil their (probably high) expectations then they can simply click the little arrow at the top of the screen and choose someone else.

To ensure they don’t, there are some things you should make sure your website does for them. If you already run an eCommerce business, then you will know the sorts things that your site needs to do. They are simple things that make a huge difference. Simply having it so the clickable links on your site highlight themselves when the mouse touches them will give your website a higher ranking.

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Another main tip from us is not to have too much or too little text. Google will pick up on all of this and judge you on it; if there is too little it is probable that there is a lack of information there, whereas nobody wants to be faced with a page full of block text. Just the right amount (300-500 words) seems to do the trick.

 

Social Media

 

The ‘power of social media’ has been big news for a few years now and things haven’t changed. There are so many platforms to share on that one can no longer guarantee the same effect as the other. Each type of business will tend to do better on one form of social media than another, purely because there are so many now. For example, one type of business might really thrive on Facebook but not get so much interaction on say, Linkedin.

 

Winning at social media can be easy if you have the time to put into it- and it is a full time job. Which is why many companies will tend to put their social media on the back-burner, although they are aware that being active on one or more social media accounts will benefit them and work in their favour. Not only will sharing on social media increase your general reach, (potentially thousands more people will see your brand via one post) it will help your SEO by giving you more backlinks to your website and regular updates as well as forming relationships and engaging with customers with ease.

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Our social media packages work with each business individually to assess the best marketing strategy for your brand.

 

Let’s make 2014 the year of successful eCommerce together!

The 12 Tweets of Christmas

Christmas Tweet Tips for your Business

The big day is getting closer and your festive marketing campaigns should be well underway by now. When it comes to social media, twitter in particular, everything is temporary. People will often only scroll down two or three times to update on their news feeds, so by making sure you follow all our Top Tweet Tips for Christmas you can be sure to be seen.

 

1.Learn from the Ghost of Christmas past

 

Twitter analytics are a relatively new addition to the social platform, they can really help you understand what works for your account.

 

Check out last years analytics if possible, see what worked and what did not so you can be sure you are tweeting to your full potential, and not making the same mistakes again.

2. It’s not too late to offer discounts!

 

Competitions, discounts and promotions go down like a dream at this time of year. Contrary to what you may think it is not too late to offer your followers a festive treat. Even after Christmas, people are always going to appreciate your generosity.

 

Marketing a January Sales offer could work wonderfully in your favour, especially if you didn’t do one in time for Xmas. However much people are are pinching the pennies, they still can’t resist a bargain!

 

3. A time for giving

 

As we all know, Christmas is a time for kindness and generosity, so show your customers you care by supporting a cause or charity out at the busiest (and often toughest) time of the year. Customers will also notice your ethical standards and be more compelled towards your brand.

Having an affiliation with a charity can really help your marketing campaign in more way than one. Not only is it helping out people or things that are less fortunate, but it raises your presence, especially on social media.

 

3. Ask for RT’s

 

Retweets can be priceless to marketing, if retweeted by the ‘right’ person or brand, it can have a huge impact on your account.

By simply putting an “RT” at the start of your tweet, it implies to your followers that they should retweet your message. If you are marketing a holiday coupon, discount, giveaway or voucher, asking for an RT could help you reach that extra audience.

 

4. Use images

 

With Twitter’s new image feature, more and more images get shown with every tweet. If you search a hashtag, you will find a selection of the top/ latest images associated with that tag, which can work wonders for marketing.

 

Creating graphics and uploading images to your tweets will make them bigger! With more to look at, more gets noticed.

5. Don’t make it all about business

 

In order to really succeed with your social campaigns this Christmas, don’t try to shamelessly self-promote yourself too much. People are naturally feeling festive, so talk to them about things that matter to us all; for example, food and drink recipes are a great way to show your festive side, give your twitter account more of a persona and increase your retweets and post reach.

6. Customer Service is key

 

Christmas is an exciting time, but it can also be a very stressful time for some. Try to make it easier on your customers by replying promptly and professionally to any enquiries, questions, complaints or mentions.

 

If you get a negative or angry tweet from someone, the best you can do is be honest, professional and show your concern. Be as helpful as possible to everyone, ensuring that your brand maintains it’s nice persona and comes across as honest and helpful.

 

7. Schedule some posts for when you won’t be able to tweet.

 

We’re all busy and we all want to relax and enjoy Christmas with our loved ones, but still, your followers will inevitably checking their twitter accounts when they open their new smart phones, tablets or laptops this Xmas! Be sure to be the face wishing them a happy day!

 

You can schedule tweets to come out at times where you can’t find yourself at a computer. This is great news for businesses as you can still wish your followers a twinkly christmas and a prosperous New Year without even thinking about it on the day!

8. Utilise Holiday Hashtags!

 

Using hashtags in your tweets means that they are exposed to more people. By using popular Christmas-related tags, you can increase your reach with ease. Try things like : #StockingFillers #GiftIdeas #LastMinuteGifts to get your products and services noticed by more users.

So there you have it, 8 wonderful tips to help you win at Twitter this Christmas.

Keep these up alongside your normal Tweets and Interactions to give your pre (and post) Xmas campaign an extra boost.

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