Secret Power of Interacting on Social Media

There’s always lots of Facebook posts flying around asking people to support those in small business.

Instead of spending your money with the big multinationals, redirect some of your spend to the little guys.

A glorious sentiment. Helping someone build their dream. Helping someone grow their business to the point where they are earning a profit and can employ others.

Why do we struggle with that?

We have no problem walking into Woolworths to spend $200 on stuff in boxes but when our friend asks us to buy their skin care or other useful product, we are reticent to part with our hard-earned cash.

You see it all the time for those in network marketing – they offer similar if not better products than the big well known chains. Yet their friends run for cover when asked to buy from them.

There is a scientific reason for this (but when Googled this phenomena, there was nothing). The same mindset on Facebook.

For those in small business, the holy grail on Facebook is to get likes and people engaging with our posts. Achieving organic reach is the ultimate but many of us find this hard without spending a few bucks on advertising. Even then, there is no guarantee of post cut through.

You see pages with thousands of people as likers; there is lots of ‘to’ going on but not a lot of ‘for’. No comments being made and hardly any likes.

There’s a few reasons for that:

  • The content sucks – boring and uninspiring
  • The content misses the mark – not understanding the target audience
  • Posting at the wrong time of day
  • Facebook has changed it algorithms AGAIN
  • People do not understand the power of interaction and supporting the business (person)

Let’s say you tick all the other boxes – your content is fresh and interesting, you understand your target audience, you know when to post, you are keeping up with Facebook’s changes, you have lots of people following you.

Maybe what is needed to educating the followers on how to be a good follower, a good supporter. Because most people are happy to sit back and soak up the info but stay quietly in the background.

No.  That does not work. If you took the time to follow a business or a person, get benefit from their content and enjoy their posts, TELL THEM. What does it really cost you to take a minute to write a post and share?

Social media, especially Facebook is about two-way conversation. No one really wants to feel like they are talking to an empty room. I know we are inundated with information and marketing at the rate of 5,000 messages a day but if you have no intention of engaging, do not join a business page for the sake of it.

When the business page you like (you liked it for a reason) ask a question to prompt discussion, engage, answer the question, ask for more info. Don’t be shy.

Give feedback – keep it nice – if you can’t say something nice, do not say anything at all). Give compliments, share posts and answer questions asked in business groups (if you have the expertise to give the answer)

Ask questions – instead of going to Google, ask the expert you have at your fingertips. There is no such thing as a silly question. Just like there is no such thing as perfection or the right time – just ask.

Share – if a business you are connected with is promoting a local workshop or event, has written a great post or an awesome offer – SHARE it with your networks. Don’t just click share, tag people into the post (to keep them on the business’s page) and write a personal message (it seems less like spam if you take the time to say why you think the post is great). Share it with your networks.

Remember the Law of Reciprocity – chances are you have a business and would like more people to share your awesomeness.  Here’s how it works – if someone does something nice for you, you will have an urge to do something nice in return. You may even reciprocate with a gesture far more generous than the original good deed. I call that a win win.

Being in small business can be a lonely place. It can be a hard slog.  There is so much you need to know and do to get ahead. It is no longer as simple as hanging your shingle out. You have to be an expert at everything. Why don’t we commit to making it easy on each other by supporting each other more? Using each other’s services. Helping to spread the word about each other’s business (the power of PR – third party credibility is priceless).

So next time your friend asks you to buy their {insert product}, say yes. The next time a business you support shares info about {insert event/product} on Facebook, share it.

Pop Quiz, Monday with Annette Densham

When someone says ‘I don’t have a story.’ Then we pull out of them enough to write four blogs a month and articles to pitch to the media.

The Pop Quiz, Monday is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise after all since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.

I want to introduce you to our guest today who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.

Can you please tell everyone your name?
Annette Densham

Annette Densham
Photo credit: Annette Densham

What is your job role?
Public relations specialist

Tell us about your company?
Publicity Genie is the story whisperers. We pull from small businesses their great stories to share with the media and beyond. Public relations is an incredible way to connect and build relationships … and we are the conduit for that.

What do you love most about your job?
When someone says ‘I don’t have a story.’ Then we pull out of them enough to write four blogs a month and articles to pitch to the media.

What motivates you to get up every day and go to work?
That I have the ability to find, write and share stories. I’m always looking for great ops for my clients, and that’s fun.

How do your co-workers inspire you?
I work with Becca McGregor who’s our PR manager. She’s gutsy, talented and tenacious. I love how she sees stories.

How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?
We work in different continents, but we talk through messenger… We have fun by getting publicity wins.

What are some of the challenges of your job?
Client expectations expecting media wins all the time. It’s our job to educate them that PR is more than the mainstream media and it’s all about relationships. Good PR can take time.

Also, the current state of the media. So much news is now trivial and inane.

What are some lessons learned from a past project that you can share with us?
With any PR campaign, be consistent, resistant and persistent. Always follow up … more than once. We had a media win recently where we pitched the story seven times, and on the 8th time, we got a yes.

What advice would you give to someone who is starting in your industry?
Look at PR as a holistic beast … incorporate a range of mediums and platforms. A good PR person understands social media, SEO, video, and the media.

Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web:

How to Grow your Twitter Followers the Right Way

There are new businesses which are sprouting every second. The competition for customers is reaching new heights every day. Marketing and brand creation have taken up the position of kingmakers.

Social networking is becoming their most powerful weapon. Twitter is gaining importance in the marketing world for its real-time impact. With Twitter, you can create an audience, share ideas, and promote your business. Twitter is great for maintaining loyal customers and attracting new ones — all in one go! But what’s success without a little hard work?

While all this seems easy and smooth on paper, in reality, it could be a tough grind! Some companies might like quick-fixes. They may like buying a large number of followers, but they forget that puppets have no voices.

So how should one ignite an organic growth in one’s twitter followers? Here are some tried and tested ways:

Creating a Chorus of Retweets

Photo by Marten Bjork on Unsplash

In this step, you need to tweet content which seems alluring and fresh to the general audience. You need to compel them to retweet your content again and again. It will establish your brand value and publicize it among the masses. You can:

  • Use links in your tweets which have a higher probability of getting retweeted.
  • Try including images to ensure engagement of your audience.
  • Add relevant hashtags to your posts which will be seen when new users search for words related to your posts, increasing your followers gradually.
  • Make your page look lively and increase its visibility by posting frequently. Tools like HootSuite and SproutSocial, which schedule your tweets often come in handy.
  • Ask for Retweets. A study suggests that tweets including “please retweet” in their text are four times more likely to be retweeted.
  • Tweet motivational and inspirational quotes or proverbs since they’re very likely to get retweeted.

The Follow Dance on Twitter

Photo by Nicolas Cool on Unsplash

Following others creates a greater probability of getting followed by them.

  • You may start by following more and more people. It’s proven that the more you follow others, the more followers you get in your account.
  • Use an actual image of yourself as a profile picture rather than your logo since no one wants to follow a faceless brand.
  • Upload your email contacts to Twitter and find more people you know. Follow backs are fast if you’re connected to them in real life.
  • Make it extremely easy for people to reach you by using a follow button in your website and your blog.
  • To find more Twitter users to connect with, use Twiends which helps its users with similar interests to get listed accordingly and then follow each other increasing your circle of followers.

Making your content visible

Having optimized content and settings, increase the visibility of your account to new users and tempt more people to join your twitter world.

Start with including optimized search keywords in your bio, and to attract local users, do add your city or region name.

  • other increasing your circle of followers.

Making your content visible

Having optimized content and settings, increase the visibility of your account to new users and tempt more people to join your twitter world. Start with including optimized search keywords in your bio, and to attract local users, do add your city or region name. Tweeting on weekends is linked with about 17% more engagement from followers in general. So, grab this opportunity and keep your Twitter account highly active on the weekends.

  • Reference users in your tweets and mention their names frequently. People more often contribute to discussions where they’ve been specifically mentioned.
  • Find new followers using Ignitwit. Choose your topics of interest, and you’ll receive a list of people you should follow. They will even tell you who decided not to follow you back, giving you a chance to eliminate/unfollow the uninterested parties.
  • Make it a point to reply to questions. This not only shows your social media etiquettes but also highlights that you take notice of your followers’ queries and care to solve them, making your account worth following back.

Effective promotion of your Account

Promoting your account is an inevitably important process. It helps your brand to gain attention and slowly become a household product.

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash
  • Start by publishing your twitter account in all your marketing materials which will include business cards, brochures, signs and your website too.
  • Promote your twitter account on all your social networking platforms. Entice your audience by mentioning about interesting discussions that you’re engaging in, on Twitter.
  • Do not forget to include your username in the author bio of your guest posts.
  • Participate in popular twitter chats. Chats are great tools to engage with your customers and establish a connection in a short period. Follow them afterwards; they’re most likely to follow you back.
  • Try tweeting often between 1 pm to 3 pm when Twitter traffic is at its peak ensuring that you engage more and more people by asking questions or posting on relevant topics which are bound to sell like hotcakes!