The end of year to-do list…

With a brand new year just around the corner, and the increased efforts to make improvements and implement changes that come with that, I thought I would start the process a little early.  Before I can commit to any new projects and distractions, I’d first like to clear the current clutter.  The clutter is mostly in my mind but somewhat manifesting itself around my office too.  So here is the plan in short:

  1. Go through notebooks and diary.

I have several different ways of recording all the bits of information I process on a daily basis, so between my phone notes, notebook, and lots of pieces of paper I should be able to tie up all loose ends.  By which, all I will really be doing is compiling one even bigger to do list, but at least it will all be written in one place.  Of course, my intention is really to get through this list of small mundane boring things to do, or new ideas to follow-up on. Before the end of 2013 of course.

2. The calendar clean-up 

My husband and I both have a desk calendar, although one is like a large piece of doodle art and the other has all the family appointments on it.  Although we try to attend all the things we arrange, sometimes this is impossible so another aspect of clearing the clutter so to speak, is to go through the calendar for the year and check there is nothing important we have forgotten to rearrange.  Plus it’s also a good time to schedule in anything new coming up, like the new term swimming lessons schedule, or meetings, appointments and castings scheduled for the next month.

3. Moving paperwork piles into files

Overall most of my paperwork is already organised into piles so it’s mostly a case hole punching and flicking through files to insert the papers, but there is also a small unorganised pile to go through and sort out.  If you have large amounts to get through my advice is try breaking it up into chunks to tackle.  Divide it into 3 piles and spend no more than 20 minutes sorting through one pile, then take a break and go do something else.  Each time you return to the filing piles, you will see progress and that in itself is motivation enough to finish it.

1372The last couple of things that are on the 2013 to do list will be to organise a New Years event for one of the beer brands I work with and to sign the paperwork to become a Director in my husband’s new business.

With everything taken care of that way, I will then be fully free to focus all my energy on a positive, busy and successful 2014.  And put my feet up a little for the rest of 2013.

What do you plan to do before 2014 arrives?  What are you planning to do in 2014 anyway?  I’d love to hear how you plan to have a positive, happy, successful year too.

Facebook paid advertising…are you doing it?

Advertisers everywhere are making use of social media to enhance their business. The majority of these are using the free tools such as Facebook, Twitter and Youtube, but a lot more marketers are realising the need to increase their social media budgets for the year. In order to reach the right audience, at the right time and direct more traffic to your website and gain new customers, it’s becoming essential to also pay for advertising in the social media space.

However unlike other marketing campaigns, this can even be done on a small budget. There are various paid media channels to choose from on Google, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook so right now we are only going to concentrate on what Facebook has to offer, since is this where most people’s social media campaigns start.

Currently Facebook only shows 10-16% of your fans your posts. Facebook’s algorithm ranks your posts according to how people have previously interacted with content type, the weight of a post, ie photos get seen by more people, the time decay on a post or how old it is and the connection/affinity you have with the fans. So unless each of your fans go and check out your page EVERY day, chance are they are missing a lot of your posts. And I’m sure you are all familiar with those certain fans who always seem to comment and like your stuff. You might think they are your biggest fans, and in a way they are, but it’s more likely because of their previous interactions that are part of the 10-16% usually selected to see your recent posts.

FACEBOOK ADS

To start a new paid advertising campaign on Facebook, go to your page.  On the right hand side, near the top of the page you will notice an Ads Manager button.  Once you click into this, the option will then be to Create An Ad.

Choose what you are advertising – Your page, Another URL for your website, a Place, an App that you have designed or a link to iTunes for example, or an Event.

In this instance we are going to choose to advertise your page to get more likes.  After you have selected the page you want, you need to choose the goal:

Now you want to create your ad with the following:

Capture - step 1

Insert headline (25 characters) and some text about your product or service (90 characters) and which page – Timeline or Photos, you want people to land on when they click your ad, also known as landing view.

For no further cost you can also choose to show sponsored stories about people liking your page.

Now you have to choose your audience.  You can enter some very specific criteria here to narrow down your search to the most relevant people on Facebook.  This is how you grown your fan base with people who are interested in your product or service.

Capture - Choose audience

Once you have selected the country / countries you wish to advertise in, you will see a figure of the number of people you could potentially reach.  However you can target your audience even more specifically and this will either cause the reach number to fall or rise, depending on the criteria selected.  As you can see below, I have narrowed my search down by selecting to only show the ad to women.

Capture- Advanced targeting options

Capture- Audience Autos

Now I want to choose even more Advanced Targeting Options to select people that have an interest in Autos as well.  You will notice the reach potential then increases again.

Capture - Small business ownersOn top of people who have an Auto interest I also want to target Small Business Owners in Zimbabwe too, so I selected that option too.

Campaign, Pricing and Schedule

SO how much is this all going to cost?  Well the beauty of it is that you decide.  When you run an ad you are only charged for the number of clicks (impressions) it receives and this never exceeds your daily / lifetime budget.  The bigger your budget, the more people you will reach.  The distribution of your ad factors the following in: bid, marketplace competition, target audience and performance history.

If you choose a per day budget, Facebook will spread out the spending per day, however a lifetime budget will be paced over the lifetime of the campaign.  Ads will stop showing once your daily budget has been met.  Once you have input the info, you will get a chance to review your ad and then you will either Place Order or go back and Edit.  Once you click the Place Order button you will then need to add your funding source.

Capture - Campaign costs etc

Capture - Funding source

If you, like many others are sceptical  about the return on investment with social media and are unsure of how to measure your  efforts, you may want to initially just try simple yet interesting paid campaigns.  Another way to find more funding for Facebook ads is by cutting back on resources in other areas of marketing that just are not performing as planned.

Like they always say…don’t knock it until you tried it.  Have you tried it or are thinking about it?  Please feel free to share your thoughts on this.

10 ways to make your picture posts more appealing

We all know that pictures speak a thousand words so using them in social media is essential, but you can get bogged down with the usual posts and style of pictures so here are a couple of suggestions to spice things up a bit.  Photos get as many as 7 times more likes than just written updates and they get shared about 10 times more than links.

css unhealthy food1. don’t just say it, show it.  By adding text to your photo, you can get your point across quickly, or you can make your message a little more appealing.

2. Show readers step by step guides with pictures that link together to form a useful map of how to’s.  For something that is quite complex this is the simple solution.css logo 1

3. Use quotes.  Find the best ones online and put them onto your pictures.  Or use clever apps that do it for you.

4. Create infographics.  These are becoming huge, especially on sites like Scoop-it and Pinterest, so start with simple ideas and try it out.  By utilizing graphics to relay a large amount of information, you can enhance the ability to see patterns and trends on the things you really want to show.

anne frank quote5. Encourage people to share photos with your business.  Find creative ways to get users to submit photos to you, and do the hard work for you by generating content.

6. Make sure all your blogs have at least one pinnable image for Pinterest.  The Pin It button is clicked a lot so if you want your content to be seen, make sure enough of it exists.

7. Create an interesting cover picture on your Facebook profile.  The rules have changed now so you can have more writing and promo stuff on your cover picture, still not more than 20% I think, so this means you can get a bit more creative.

8. Get up close to the subject.  Extreme close up shots add a lot of depth and feeling. Give a new perspective to your shots, not all of them, but some really well thought out ones will work wonders.

9. Spend some time brainstorming on photo content ideas and create and build a library of photos that you can use over the next few weeks or months.

10.  Just do silly sometimes.  We just made a silly sign for our kids to hold and it got more likes and was seen by more people than any of the other more standard posts we had put up.  IMG_4449

 

 

 

 

 

Social Media Target Audience Profiles

targetSocial media has opened hundreds more doors when it comes to sharing user friendly content and connecting with potential customers. As Internet growth continues to explode, relying soley on traditional marketing tools and websites will no longer be enough.

Social media has a strong impact in the growth of online business. It is not purely for recreational use and the sooner you can see the potential of these social media platforms, the quicker you can reach your target audience. Why is it such a big deal?

Everyone is already using social media on a personal level, so they are already engaging and connecting with brands out there, whilst doing what they want, when they want, getting info about whatever they want. They are also impatient so if they can’t find what they are looking for quickly their mentality is to find it somewhere else, because they can. Once you get to know “them” better, you will probably hear more about what “they say” too. I’ve always wondered who “they” are, but know I know – they are your target audience!

Develop profiles for your target audience on social media

Know who your target audience really are so that you can create content that is optimized for them. Develop some profiles of what your customers look like and post content based on the profiles of your target audience. Social media allows you to distribute unique content throughout the day, targeted at different profiles within your target audience, and you know that content will be seen by your target audience then and there.

What’s in your Target Audience Profile?

Demographics – Age, Gender, Income level, Race
Interests – What other pages do they like
Irritations / Issues they have
Social behaviour – What do they like on Facebook, what makes them comment or share

You can add in lots more information to your profile and get creative with who they really are. Once you have a basic idea of what your target audience looks like, its amazing how much better you get with brainstorming sessions about what to post and when. You may want to try postings to different groups within your target audience profiles to see what works and what doesn’t.

If this all sounds too much like hard work, and you just interested in having a pretty page with lots of likes then let us do the hard work for you.

We specialise is social media management and we offer unique social media management services, that are designed to fit around your business and budget. A surprisingly small investment for a rewarding outcome. If you would like to know more about how we can help you grow your online community and customer base then please contact us by filling out the form below.