Persuasive Picks for week of 6/11/12

Facebook Engagement is a critical issue for social marketers, not only because consumer interaction has become a cornerstone of the new marketing landscape, but also because Facebook Engagement is critically tied to brand visibility on the platform. Morgan J. Arnold at SocialMediaToday examines how the type of Facebook Post – Photos, Videos, Statuses, Questions and Links – impacts engagement in Optimizing Facebook Engagement – Text, Links, Photos or Videos?

Consumer brand interactions have come a long way in the past couple years. The social web has turned into a consumer’s playground to talk about or interact with brands. People search for the best deals, assess product reviews, share the positive or negative insights with their social spheres of influence, and find locations — whether online or brick and mortar — to purchase a product. iMediaConnection contributor Nicole Rawski explains that every brand can benefit from understanding online engagement in her latest post How to really measure engagement.

10 Social Media Tips From a Top Media Agency – Whether your company is just getting its social sea legs or excelling in the digital world, there is a niche and opportunity for every brand on social media. While Facebook and Twitter are the building blocks that a brand should start with in the social sphere, your level of understanding impacts your brand’s ability to perform on social media. Mashable’s Christine Erickson spoke with a one of the top media agencies in the world to provide helpful tips for brands at any level.

With a predominantly female audience, Pinterest is a popular place to share photos for wedding planning, home redecorating, recipes, vacation destinations, and books. However, despite popular belief, your business doesn’t need to be product-based in order take advantage of the benefits that Pinterest offers. Stephanie Chandler shows Forbes readers how to get started in Pinterest Power: How to Use the Third Largest Social Media Site to Promote Your Business.

Flexing your social savvy: Do you ‘THINK’ before you tweet?

We’ve all committed social gaffes at one time or another, saying something in the heat of the moment that we immediately wished we could take back. But thanks to today’s public social media platforms, ‘what happens on Twitter’…can really stick around to haunt you.

The most recent case in point: This year’s Miss Seattle, who proclaimed her annoyance with the city of Seattle, its residents and its weather one dreary day in December. A local reporter caught wind and blogged about the blunder, which became a veritable viral sensation. An honest mistake, by all accounts – Jean-Sun Hannah Ahn, 22, a Seattle native, said she was merely missing the sunny weather in Phoenix, where she attended Arizona State University and was crowned Miss Phoenix – but damaging nonetheless.

Ahn has since spent the majority of her time in the position apologizing for her social media misstep. Most recently, she spent a day educating school children on her new platform: “THINK Before You Post,” which stands for Truthful, Helpful, Inspiring, Needed and Kind to remind them to make sure their online posts fall into those categories.

And so she joins the ranks of other famous (infamous?) faces who have failed to recognize that a public social media platform is just that…public. But they’re not alone; even though it may not be breaking news, there’s a good chance that many of us are also guilty of the same faux-pas. In fact, a recent Daily Mail poll revealed that approximately 25 percent of people have tweeted something they regret, and approximately the same number of people said they have posted something on a site that they never would have said to someone’s face.

So while there are no official ‘rules’ for using Twitter, we thought it might be helpful to review a few tips for projecting a more professional image, regardless of whether you use it for work or personal purposes. After all, you never know just who is watching…

  1. Have a goal. Decide what you want to get out of having a Twitter account before you set it up. Make a plan, have a purpose, and direct your actions accordingly.
  2. Mind your grammar. Capitalize only when needed (DON’T SHOUT IN CAPS!), use active language, refrain from using numbers “2” replace words, and use abbreviations wisely.
  3. Focus on value. What can you offer followers that others cannot? Post quality content regularly, – take an active interest and you’ll keep them connected, interested and engaged.
  4. Be edgy, not offensive. There’s a fine line between pushing the envelope and pushing the limits of good taste. Take your followers into consideration, but – above all – use common sense.
  5. Think before you tweet. This is definitely worth repeating. And when in doubt, wait. Give yourself a window for cooling off when you may be emotional.

Got any Twitter best practices? Or pet peeves? Feel free to share in the comments below!

“Influencers Who Inspire” with Laura Fitton (@Pistachio)

Our influencer Q&A today is with well-known inbound marketing evangelist, Laura Fitton. Laura “@Pistachio” Fitton is the founder of www.oneforty.com, founder and principal of Pistachio Consulting, co-author of “Twitter for Dummies” and the inbound marketing evangelist at HubSpot. We had the chance to ask her some questions about her career, her passions and what 2012 has in store for her.

Who has been the most fascinating person you have ever met?

My daughter, S. How cliched is that? She is so unlike me. She is so preternaturally gentle and wise. I watch how she is with her little sister and how she “manages” me. I learn so very much from her. Fascination is actually the perfect word to describe it. Gobloads of overwhelming maternal love, but also a great deal of fascination and respect for what is amazing and special about her.

 

What do you love most about social media? What bugs you about social media?

The humans. I love the humans, deeply, even if I don’t always express it well or understand how best to make them feel good about themselves. I love trying to help people feel more excited, become more connected and try things that they might not otherwise give themselves the chance to try.

 

As a busy mom of two, how do you prioritize?

Pretty poorly, sometimes.  One thing I do well is rotate priorities over time. For example, my kids missed out on a lot of time and attention during the crunch years of oneforty.com, and they’re getting a lot more of my time and attention now that my life is in better balance. When my childcare situation blew up at the end of February, I took it as a hint from the universe to do something I’d long dreamed of. I took a temporary 20% paycut to spend Tuesdays at home with my daughters. It’s an amazing privilege to be able to do that and I’m incredibly grateful to HubSpot for the flexibility (this alone should tell you what an amazing employer they are!). My youngest starts school full time in September, so I’m squeezing every drop out of the last few “home all day” months.

I also regret to say that I threw my (romantic) personal life completely under the train during the oneforty.com years. It was what I felt I had to do at the time, but it was probably a mistake. No biggie, lesson learned. We always grow from stuff like this. I’m really enjoying the process of establishing a new social life – both new friends and potential dates – and the cool events and activities I’m going to regularly as a part of it.

 

How do you explain your career to your children?

Some stuff – mommy had a company, mommy is at HubSpot now, etc. they know in great detail. I brought them to HubSpot’s last company meeting because it fell on my “SAHM Tuesday.” Ditto for General Catalyst’s big annual networking event. They’ve been to a number of networking events because I want them to see themselves as part of the technology, business and cultural worlds from the get go. Gratitude to Halley Suitt for encouraging me to try this years ago.

Other stuff – mostly around my “visibility” (readership, press, awards, hype about me) – they have little to no idea about, and I try hard to keep it that way. One hugely proud moment was S____ blurting out “Mommy, what’s Twitter?” in a quiet moment at a MSNerd networking event, only a couple of years ago. She knew I had a book and a company, but I try to keep that weird side of my life away from my kids. She has a vague sense of it now, but she asks “Mommy, will you share this picture of me with your friends?” with no sense of what that really means.

In general we talk about it in terms they will understand and can relate to their own lives. For example, they know about YouTube because we have watched it together for years, and they have their own YouTube channel now. But, I don’t link to or promote that channel from my social media accounts partly for privacy and partly to keep it a small, quiet place for them to explore.

 

What has been your biggest accomplishment thus far?

Hands down it’s my daughters. Period. End of story.

 

You have always spoken about the business potential of Twitter. Do you still feel as passionate about this?

Yes. Very much so. I guess I’m a lot quieter about it lately. The passion didn’t go anywhere though. My Webvisions Portland keynote, planned for May 17th, should make that clear.

 

Do you have any hobbies or passions?

Too too many! Ice hockey, yoga, horseback riding, rock climbing, gardening, pets (we have a cat, two dogs and four chickens!), amazing food, adventure and travel. I’m lucky to have had the chance to reconnect with almost all of that since the acquisition of oneforty last August.

I’m training to do my first race – of any kind – this summer with the Tough Mudder at Mt. Snow in July. Ten to twelve miles of running up ski slopes, dozens of “bootcamp” style obstacles and electroshocks at the end. Somehow seemed a fitting way to mark turning 40.

My biggest passion remains trying to help people and make a difference. Coming to work every day to spread the story of how inbound marketing helps businesses grow – and therefore creates jobs – ignites that core passion very much.

 

What is next for you in 2012?

The rate of on-the-job learning for me at HubSpot is just awesome. I’m so excited to help get the incredible work HubSpot and its customers are doing more widely known out in the world, because I know that it can help others to a tremendous degree.

It’s amazing to be at a company with 6500 customers and a marketing community of MILLIONS of people. It’s even more exciting to realize only a tiny fraction of that community realizes that we’re a software company. We’ve been so selfless in our marketing efforts for years that some huge number of people think we’re an agency.

As that changes, and marketers realize we’ve got this really HELPFUL all-in-one software, we can help even more businesses grow while stamping out crappy marketing. We think marketing can be this really noble profession that provides incredible value to those who receive marketing messages. That’s the wave of the future – selfish marketing perishes and marketing that people love helps businesses thrive.

 

 

Persuasive Picks for week of 4/16/12

When Deborah Sweeney, CEO of MyCorporation, started to run her own business, she never would have guessed that a day would come when she’d be expected to update the internet on her life in 140 characters or less. To help CEO’s aspiring to join the Twitter-sphere, Deborah posts her advice on Becoming a “Corporate Executive Tweeter” on SocialMediaToday.

A strong referral network is imperative for small businesses. Thanks to social networking, businesses can now connect directly with customers, enabling them to market in new more cost-effective ways. MarketingProfs guest blogger Pamela Springer provides some tips to Build a Strong Referral Network to Boost Your Business and parlay those social networks into business opportunities.

Pinterest isn’t only for women – despite its heavy concentration on all things girlie, it’s for guys, too! Pinterest has a growing audience of men who like the site – for many of the same reasons women do explains Jennifer Waters in her latest MarketWatch article Why men like social-media site Pinterest.

Doug Schumacher takes a look at some numbers around Facebook content and what kind is the most shared, and finds that video and photo posts are far more likely to be shared than status updates or links. Find out more of What consumers share on Facebook – and why in his iMediaConnection post.

Persuasive Picks for week of 3/19/12

Pinterest released a new page design for profile pages this week – Danielle Leitch of SocialMediaToday discusses the improved functionality and advantages the new design will provide for both “pinners” and businesses alike in her post Pinterest has a New Design.

This week also brought the announcement of the integration of social media into Google Analytics, bridging the gap between social media and the metrics businesses care about. Frank Reed, Managing Editor at Marketing Pilgrim, asks Was Analytics Google’s REAL Social Media Missing Link? in his latest post that predicts marketers will be looking more closely at more social media channels and see the value of being in even more places.

As Twitter celebrated it’s sixth birthday this week, Nancy Scola set out on a quest for the origins of a hashtag and came up empty handed. In her latest post Our social-media amnesia, she discusses the access and value of archival tweets – via Reuters.

Speaking of hashtags, Todd Wasserman of Mashable focuses on 6 Successful Twitter Hashtag Campaigns that effectively harnessed Twitter in a way that provoked positive discussion and action.