The best platform for your brand.

By Olivia Marshall

 No matter what brand you are trying to promote, there is a specific demographic you are attempting to reach. Social media is a fantastic way to reach those targeted audiences, but you need to use the correct platform in order to do so. Find out which major social media sites contain your targeted audiences, here.

It may seem in the best interest of the company to go ahead and get all of the mainstream social media accounts set up and get out there in every way possible, but now companies are discovering that there are certain sites that work better than others when promoting their brand.

Eat24, a website that finds all food delivery restaurants in a given area, began to notice that their Facebook page wasn’t the most relevant platform to use for their business. A Facebook page isn’t the best channel for a brand that is very close to its followers, because the filter bubble will almost always guarantee missed posts to the audience, along with many unwanted ads.

Eat24 decided they needed to “break up” with Facebook through a letter, which they share in this blog. The letter talked about the troubles of the ever-changing Facebook algorithm that decides who sees what posts, and what ads are shown on the sidebars to those who “like” a certain page.

Not to say Facebook isn’t a great social media platform; it gives audiences ample opportunities to interact and get engaged with brands, but it is not always the relationship a brand wants with its customers.

Luckily, there are plenty of other platforms to choose from, with new ones being started up on the daily.

Focusing on quantity over quality applies to social media. If you are looking to increase traffic to your website, a platform like Facebook or Twitter might be the right way to go. For companies looking to engage customers in new ways and increase brand exposure, another platform may be the better choice.

Brands that produce a lot of visual content may prefer to use platforms such as YouTube or Instagram, sites made to present more visual content to subscribed followers. If you follow a company on Instagram, no filter bubble will be hiding posts from you, and what you follow is what you’ll get in your feed.

It is important to remember that no brand is expected to have a presence on every social media outlet. The idea of focusing on three platforms is mentioned in an article from Entrepreneur. Only have as many accounts as you can manage, because social media is only effective if the account is active. Find the platforms best for your brand, and be sure to stay involved in the ones you decide to use.

Photo courtesy of http://www.visionmonday.com/CMSImagesContent/2013/7/Right-Social-Media-Platforms-IMG-1.jpg

Growing Business Through Social Media by Brittany

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Working for Ichabod Shop has given me great insight as to how businesses can use social media to grow. When I started at Ichabod Shop, there was no Social Media Assistant. The Ichabod Shop Facebook page posted about once a week, if that, and had less than 500 likes. Then we I came we changed a lot. I have learned a list of helpful tools that I am going to share:

1: People like pictures. Posting just plain text does not get nearly as much views or likes as much as posting a picture. Even better put a picture of a person. When we put pictures of students on the page, the post blows up because it gets spread amongst the community. It also brings outsiders to our page and gives us more likes.

2: People love to save money. If you post something about coupons, discounts, or sales; you will get attention and people will even share the post. Best of all, it brings them into the store. If you send people a coupon for something with a decent discount they are very likely to buy it, even if they would’ve never considered it without the discount.

3:People respond better to a relaxed approach. There is a significant difference in the attention posts get, just depending on who writes them. The majority of Ichabod Shop’s audience is about 20-30. Therefore when my bos, who is about 60 was writing posts they didn’t get a lot of attention because the way the posts were written didn’t relate to the audience. When I write posts, I honestly don’t put a lot of thought into it. I simply type what I want to say, how I would say it, and then I post it.

4: Less is more. The more text there is, the less people are going to want to read it. Also, when it comes to promoting posts, you can’t promote a post that has too much text. Facebook literally won’t let you. Nowadays, research shows that people determine if they want to read something in the first three seconds. So put the important information first.

 

I have attached a link to the Ichabod Shop facebook page so everyone can see the progression and give feedback. I have also added one of our recent pictures that received a lot of attention. Notice, there’s nothing extra special about it, but it included a lot of people and had the general theme of St. Patrick’s day and got a lot of attention.

https://www.facebook.com/#!/Ichabodshop

NOTHING BUSINESS, IT’S JUST PERSONAL

by Ian Hoffman

Social Media has given us a great tool with which to connect with others. As with any tool, the result is all in how you use it. A baseball bat can hit a game-winning homerun, or smash the windshield of an ex-lover’s car. Listing the possible uses of a paperclip would fill pages upon pages. You get the point.

Let’s focus on one small, yet extremely important aspect of this idea: the line between personal and professional social media personas. I have a personal Facebook account, and I also help manage my work Facebook account. Are there things I can say on my personal account that I wouldn’t dare say on the work account? Absolutely! Do I want to say them? It depends.

I’m not going to spend much time on this part, but I want to get the obvious out of the way quickly. Don’t post personal thoughts or non-work-related items of ANY KIND on the official work pages/sites! Now on to the real deal. . .

Even though my personal account is a separate account for personal thoughts and updates, I will still be known to some people as a representative of the company I work for. So if I try to wax political on a lazy Sunday afternoon, it will probably get a conversation going with a few of my friends. It might even be a heated discussion. On the surface, there shouldn’t be any problems with this. What you don’t know, dear reader, is that I am good friends with a few clients. If any of them see the postings and think bad thoughts about me as a friend, it’s not a huge deal. However, consider I am on staff at a school. If those same friends see the postings and think something like, “I can’t believe I leave my kids around people that think such stupid and obviously erroneous thoughts”, then we may have a serious problem.

Another way to screw up the personal/professional line is to have a brain fart and forget which account you’re logged into. This may sound like another obvious point, but trust me, it happens more than you’d think. Click here and here for a couple drastic examples, as well as a few more thoughts on the personal/professional line.

Remember that although you can put your own voice into the work posts, there should still be lines. In this super-fast-paced world, it’s important to slow down and TAKE TIME TO REVIEW EVERYTHING. You don’t want to accidentally tell everyone following your company that you’re pretty sure your father just sharted at Chili’s.

Cumulative Knowledge

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By” Megan Dortch

Social media has already changed the way we communicate and gain feedback. Companies can monitor their viewing history and gain a sense of what works with their audience and what does not. This sets a future precedent for what posts and information will be if the company keeps the same target audience.

As discussed in our “Likeable Social Media” book, social media is not strictly just advertising or marketing to customers, it is a medium that is expanding to include multiple departments. Customers are expecting immediate feedback for their questions, problems, ideas, etc. and it is up to the employees of a company to be well-rounded and know a lot about everything so they do not lose customers. With the internet age being instant, customers demand instant, accurate replies to what they have to say.

Company social media sites need to all the resources of a website in one convenient place. If customers have to click and go through too many menus to reach their destination, they may become unloyal and switch to a competitor who provides easier access to goods. This is where being a well-rounded employee comes in. Links go bad, new applications are produced quickly and content changes. If employees can respond to criticism and engage with customers in a positive manner, all the while making sure the site is up to date; that’s highly valuable to companies.

The String Theory effect explains why being well-rounded and up to date on applications and information will benefit a company. It explains it through LinkedIn. If someone likes your company’s page and 20 of their friends fall within your target audience and see that their friends like your page, BOOM. New customers. Then apply that theory to every person who likes your page and you have a melting pot of social media success.

Photo courtesy of http://www.shutterstock.com

Transparency

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Photo courtesy of http://memeburn.com/2014/01/8-things-you-need-to-know-about-transparency-in-your-social-marketing-efforts/

By Cindy Rose
Our class presentations this past week have emphasized the transparency of corporations in social media. It seems counterintuitive that a company would want to allow the public to know what goes on behind closed doors, certainly not their secrets. But social media presence demands the good, the bad and the ugly corporate information. How can the old traditional companies adjust to this playing field that consumers are now all but demanding? If they are not already out there on social media they are supposed to be losing customers, because online content marketing isn’t just the future, it’s right now.
It has become obvious that people like to talk to real people in real time. A consumer wants to know that they matter to the company they purchase from. Sound online content marketing and management is the ability to network successfully with consumers without selling anything—and reaping the rewards later. This is something a few large corporations still haven’t learned yet and are dealing with as just another nuisance, to be handled, or not to be handled at all.
Still, the best intentions can have its pitfalls. One example of an old brand trying out a new trick that missed was a Kmart post on Twitter. The store sent out condolences to the victims’ families of Sandy Hook Elementary School, but made the mistake of leaving a hashtag link to some of its toys. Naturally there was a lot of outrage aimed at , which is owned by Sears, which owns many more brands.
Social media, it seems, is here to stay for the long-haul. But it is still in its infancy compared to the corporate giants. Most of the sleeping giants are waking up to the call but there are still some who do not seem to need it because their integrity appears to be unquestioned or their brand has a strong word-of-mouth base, or because they feel they are just too big to fall. Only time will tell if they can keep standing with disingenuous transparency or no social media presence at all.

Personal Branding is a Leadership Requirement

Personal Branding is a Leadership Requirement

By, Elizabeth Burgett

As I was thinking about personal branding, I came across an article that talked about leadership a person must have in order to have a personal brand.  Expressing your personal brand requires you to develop yourself as a leader to create the image you convey to others.  The main idea is that leadership is an everyday trait that shows how you present yourself to others.

A link to the article is here. There is also a video on that site that explains how personal branding is no longer an option, it is a powerful leadership enabler.

Photo courtesy of www.toddnielson.com

To become a leader in today’s society, you must have a personal brand to help you become trusted and have traits that allow others to become followers of yours.  Social media helps portray the market you wish to connect with, however leadership is an every day trait that will extend beyond social media.  Leadership  will carry with you in your career after college, building relationships, and all other outside commitments for the rest of your life.

Leadership is a never-ending process because the older you become, the more you can develop upon your personal brand. You should never stop building upon your brand because leadership asks you to challenge yourself.  Stand out among others and use your skills to perform above what you thought you might be capable of.  It’s important to remember that leadership will be with you on your life journey forever.

To be a leader means to be a mentor, role-model, or simply someone who others can depend on.  A follower will look at your personal brand and want to adapt their brand, perhaps, to become yours’.  A brand is a trademark, much so like a business.  According to forbes.com,  “70% of professionals believe they have defined their personal brand and 50% believe they are living it.” They also mentioned that, “A personal brand is the total experience of someone having a relationship with who you are and what you represent as an individual; as a leader.”

Take a moment to sit back and think about your personal brand.  Do others know what your’s is?  It people don’t know what your personal brand is then you need to make sure you are defining it.  Personal branding requires leadership because it allows others to remember you and helps you demonstrates the impact you have in today’s world.

Ways to Promote Your Brand through Social Media

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Photo courtesy of: http://www.kirkwood.com.com

 

Ways to Promote Your Brand through Social Media

By: Taylor Inman

When thinking about this question myself I decided to look online for an article that could suggest some helpful tips on different ways to promote a brand whether personal, professional or as a multimedia student. The way you choose to promote your brand can be very effective in gaining business. By gaining some insight on “what works and what doesn’t” you can change the image of your brand for the better.

An article that I found that gives some helpful tips on this subject is titled: How Artists Can Use Social Media to Discover and Promote Their Voice by Carlota Zimmerman, which can be accessed HERE. The article gives very helpful tips on things you should do to promote yourself on social media platforms even though it can be scary at times or seem “out of your comfort zone.” One example of this Zimmerman gives, is an example of how creating something as simple as a Facebook page and linking it to your other social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest can completely change the image of your brand. “Nowadays, if you’re not taking advantage of the myriad of opportunities available to you on social media to discover and promote your brand or voice, and in so doing, generate more resources, you’re only sabotaging your own goals,” said Zimmerman. I thought this was a very interesting statement, because when I really thought about this it is very true. If you do not choose to create an image for your brand in promoting yourself others out there will promote your brand for you and sometimes do so in the most negative light possible.

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Photo courtesy of: http://www.blog.brandshare.us 

 

Some of the tips that Zimmerman suggested in this article to help get started on promoting your brand are:

1)      Present as the professional you are.

2)      Use social media to show your talent, instead of just talking about it.

3)      Use social media to develop and discover your talent.

4)      Use social media to present as the artist you wish to become.

5)      Understand that different platforms reach different audiences.

6)      Numbers don’t matter but content is king.

I found all of these tips very helpful and some I found insightful because I had never thought of them before. I think that all of these tips can be helpful for any brand that a person is trying to promote. I feel that they best way to end this post is with another quote from Zimmerman that really makes you think about what was said in her article, “So. I’m curious: what are you waiting for?”

References:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/carlota-zimmerman/how-artists-can-use-socia_b_4756824.html

http://www.kirkwood.com.com

http://www.blog.brandshare.us