Mar 25

Don’t Waste Your Time on Social Media

alarmMany business professionals  are not eager to get started in social media marketing because they think it will take hours out of their day. If it does, you’re not doing it right.

You should only set aside small amounts of time throughout the week to keep a social marketing machine running. I spend only 15 minutes a checking my social media accounts. Most people are surprised when they hear that. But it’s true. I have found that keeping the time you spend on social media short will have better results over the long run.

Less is More

You will be more likely to participate on social media every day if you know it will only take 10 to 15 minutes. If you allow your social media time to get away from you, and discover you’ve just spent an hour reading and looking through other people’s accounts, you will not want to come back tomorrow and do it again. You will begin to put off your social media work until you have more time.

Keeping your sessions very short means you won’t be afraid to do the same thing again tomorrow.

Consistency Builds Relationships

Spending just a few minutes a day on social media will allow you to effectively interact and engage others in conversations. Let’s say you visit Facebook today and leave an update. Readers then see your update an respond with a comment. Tomorrow when you are back on Facebook, you can answer the comment and keep the conversation going. This mechanism comes to a screeching halt if you only visit Facebook once a week. Readers will comment, but you won’t respond until next week. By then the conversation is too old to continue.

Consistent visit frequently to social media allow you to most effectively interact with others and build the relationship with prospects you need for future sales.

Don’t make the mistake of shying away from social media because you think it is too time consuming. It doesn’t have to be. And the ongoing marketing benefits are priceless.

Mar 20

3 Mistakes on Twitter You Don’t Want to Make

speak noTwitter is a social media network with a personality all its own.  There are lots of people there using their 140 characters for a lot of different purposes. Some connect with their friends, comedians use it to try out new jokes, others use it to spread their political views.  I use it to market my business and so should you.

Twitter has been best used in my business for making contacts with others in my industry, people I would not have met in “real life”.  It’s also been a place to talk directly to my audience. I can ask them questions about their social media experiences and share business types with them.

I test a lot of different types of social media strategies before I begin using them with clients. That means I know what to do and what NOT to do. Yes, I try to make the mistakes in my testing so I can tell you what they are. Here are a few mistakes you don’t want to make on Twitter:

1. Not Filling Out Your Profile

This may seem obvious, but many mall business Twitter users fail to take advantage of the space Twitter gives you for your name, photo, location, bio, and URL. By filling it out, you allow people to see who you are. This builds trust. It’s a small space and doesn’t take long to fill out, but it’s the way people will know where to find your business website. And you want people to find you!

2. Forgetting You Represent Your Business

Twitter is about sharing experiences an not always talking shop. Given how informal the conversation can be, however, it’s easy to get overly relaxed in your Tweets. Don’t forget that every tweet from your company account will be analyzed by your audience. Avoid being flippant about matters that are important to your customers. I stay far away from political topics. I have opinions, but I not everyone agrees with them. I don’t want my personal views to be mixed in with my business reputation.

3. Talking Too Often About Business

To make sure you’re not tweeting too often about business, I recommend a that a third of your tweets be directly about business, a third be giving useful information such as sharing articles you’ve recently read, and a third be about you personally. Sharing a little about yourself makes you more interesting and allows your audience to get to know you.

Keep these tips in mind, and you’ll have a much more successful time marketing your business with Twitter.

to Your Success,

Deborah

Mar 10

Are You Making Real Sales With Your Email List?

email_iconSo you have a list of past clients and customers. And maybe you’ve organized your email lists into an email manager, such as Constant Contact or Aweber. Are you making the most of that list? Are you making new sales regularly through your list? If your answer is no, then it’s time to get organized and make a plan for what you will send to your email list in the next few weeks and months. You need an email marketing strategy that will walk your readers through your sales funnel.

Lead and They Will Follow

So what should be in your email marketing strategy? First of all you don’t want to just send sales messages. I know I said it’s time to make sales, but you need to provide real value to your clients and customers before they are ready to buy from you. You want to walk your reader through the phase of getting to know you, like you, and trust you. Only then are they ready to buy from you.

Give Real Value With Every Email

Step one is to provide real value. This means you should be sending emails that contain information and articles that your clients and customers really want to read. If all you send are sales messages, your readers will delete emails before even reading them. They will also unsubscribe from your list. If they unsubscribe, you lose the opportunity to continually stay in front of your customer until they are ready to purchase.

Send Sales Message One Quarter of the Time

Yes, you will send sales messages occasionally, but not every time. A rule of thumb I like to use is that I send three emails with pure value, and no sales message. Then the fourth email I send real value, and I add a sales message. While you may feel you’re losing an opportunity by not including sales messages in all emails, I assure you what you are really doing is instilling trust in your reader. By eliminating the sales messages from three quarters of your emails, you are giving readers a chance to see the value you are providing. They will be eager to open your next email.

Get Started Maximizing Your Sales With Email Marketing

It’s time to start sending regular emails that will give your readers more great information. Spend some time and plan out good valuable content for your readers. Here are some ideas of valuable content you should be sending your email list:

  • Educational articles
  • How to tutorials
  • Industry News
  • Book/product reviews
  • Latest trends
  • Interviews of industry leaders
  • Tips and Tricks
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Lists of popular blogs your reader will like
  • Lists of resources found around the internet
  • Case Studies

Reap the Benefits of Your Reader’sTrust

When it is time to send a sales message, make the message a small portion of the email. Most of the email should, again, be great useful information. Continue this pattern of three valuable emails to one sales message. By giving your reader great content, they will be eager to open your email until they are ready to buy. I have had buyers who stayed on my email list for over a year before purchasing. But when they were ready, I was there in their mailbox with the product they needed. So don’t worry if you have many readers who don’t open all your emails. As long as they stay on your list, they are there because they are interested in your products and services.

Want to learn more about how to maximize your sales through your email list?  Check out The Art of Highly Effective Newsletters!

Jan 02

Develop New Business with the Right LinkedIn Groups

GroupGlobeOne of the most powerful areas of LinkedIn are the LinkedIn Groups. This is also one of the best kept secrets. It is not obvious when using LinkedIn just how powerful the groups can be. I use LinkedIn Groups to reach thousands of people every week.

The first step to getting the full value of LinkedIn Groups is to join the right groups. Here are 7 steps to follow to make sure you are in front of the right audience to market your business and network as a professional:

1. Choose your goal.

There are many reasons to use LinkedIn Groups to market your business. Knowing what your goal is will help you decide which types of groups you should be joining. The following are a sample of goals you may wish to make your own:

  • Build an online reputation
  • Meet key contacts in your field
  • Get business and sell products
  • Promote professional identity

2. Search for Groups in your prospects industry.

Joining groups in your industry will allow you to communicate directly with people from all around the country in your field. This can help you as you build an online reputation. You may be in a position to receive referrals from others in your industry in different parts of the country. For instance, if you are a real estate agent in the Dallas area, you may wish to join the group “Greater Dallas, Texas Real Estate Group”, which has 1,100 members.

Becoming active in your industry groups will also allow you to make key contacts in your field. You will be amazed how LinkedIn Groups can allow you to have direct contact with experts in your field with whom you might not otherwise have a connection.

3. Search for Groups in your geographic location.

If you are a business who sells products and services in one geographic location, then you are wise to find groups that are specifically for professionals in that location. For instance, if you are an insurance agent in Cleveland, Ohio, you might want to join the group “LinkedWorking Cleveland”, which is a group of 31,000 professionals from all industries in the Cleveland area.

Not only can you communicate in groups, but you can use them to find others in your area with whom you might want to connect.

4. Find the groups in which your prospects are members, and join the group.

Knowing who your prospects are will allow you to find out which groups they belong to, and join them. Let’s say there is a CEO of a local business with which you would like to build a relationship. Here is what you should do:

a. Find their profile on LinkedIn and see which groups they participate in.
b. Find one or two that would be appropriate for you to join, and do so.
c. Now become active in the group. They will see the discussions you start and discussions to which you contribute. They will begin to know who you are.
d. Ask for a connection with them. You now stand a higher chance they will accept your invitation.

5. Join large groups when possible.

The larger groups give you the opportunity to reach a wider audience with each discussion in which you participate. I have found that large groups have been very effective for getting a discussion started, and finding others to converse with. Remember, for every person who speaks up and contributes to a LinkedIn conversation, there are dozens more who are reading but remain silent. You wont always see the wide impact you are having, but trust me when I tell you, the numbers are there, especially in the larger groups. Take advantage of this and start discussions in larger groups.

6. Decide how many groups to join.

You are allowed to join 50 groups. Decide how much time you will spend using the groups. Allow as much time as you can because these are very valuable areas in which to participate. I belong to 50 because I know I can share blog articles with all 50 groups in just a few minutes. I choose about 10 a week to go in regularly and contribute to other discussions as I see areas in which I can contribute value. Decide how much time you can spend each day, then show up every day and participate.

Dec 15

5 Tips for Measuring Social Media Success

graphYou have a website that tells everyone about your company, products and services. You have a blog that is updated from time to time and you spend a lot of time on social media network sites to interact and communicate with people as potential clients for your business. You do these tasks each day and more just to gain that success that other people are talking about. But how do you really know that your efforts online are paying off? Are you really sure it is worth the effort and time?

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