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Nick Ehrenberg

The Hashtag Test: Best and Worst Practices for Social Media Marketers

Nick Ehrenberg on Apr 8th, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media

Hashtags

Hashtags are wonderful social media marketing tools. They can highlight trends, tie campaigns to chosen keywords, and isolate conversations. The allure of the hashtag is strong, especially for brands that desire a customized platform for their content. Twitter (and, to a lesser extent, Facebook, Instagram and Google+) thrives on hashtags for everything from primetime TV shows to organic political movements.

However, like all good things in life, the hashtag should be used in moderation. The pound sign carries great power, but only if deployed responsibly. TechCrunch’s Jordan Crook bluntly referred to users who abuse the hashtag as “hash-holes.” Avoiding that label requires an understanding of where the hashtag is most beneficial in messaging – and where it should never be deployed.

Lee Odden

Social Media Smarts Interview: Charlie Kautz of TaylorMade Golf

Lee Odden on Apr 2nd, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Advertising, Social Media Smarts

Charles Kautz

Social Media at a major brand – I think many people in the social media marketing industry would consider such a position a dream job. Or in the case of Charlie Kautz from TaylorMade Golf, the best job in social media (according to Jay Baer).

While Charlie provided a very useful tip for the recent Social Media Marketing eBook we created for SMMW14, I reached out to him after the conference to get more of a deep dive into his role at TaylorMade Golf, lessons he’s learned, how marketing and PR work together, the importance of SEO and what he really thinks about Facebook.

What makes your job at TaylorMade-adidas “The Best Job in Social Media”? 

Emily Bacheller

Measuring Social Media ROI – Brands Pull Back the Curtain at #SMMW14

Emily Bacheller on Mar 30th, 2014     Social Media, Social Media Marketing World

A panel discusses social media ROI

Marketers are increasingly faced with the challenge of proving the monetary value of social media marketing to the C-suite. Since social media is typically less of a sales tool and more of a means of nurturing new leads and maintaining a relationship with current customers, putting a price tag on social media can be a difficult thing to do.

The C-Suite will always be concerned with profit, so it’s imperative that marketers can either prove that social media is making their brand money by generating new leads or saving their brand money though customer retention.

Nick Robinson of SAP, Scott Gulbransen of DSI (formerly of H&R Block) and Lewis Bertolucci of Humana were all faced with the challenge of measuring social media ROI for their respective companies. At Social Media Marketing World, these big-brand marketers shared their secrets for measuring social media ROI in a session moderated by social ROI expert Nichole Kelly:

Emily Bacheller

24 Social Media Tools To Boost Your Marketing Performance #SMMW14

Emily Bacheller on Mar 30th, 2014     Social Media, Social Media Marketing World, Social Media Tool

Ian Cleary SMMW14

It appears that Ian Cleary is the King of Social Media tools. With new social media marketing tools coming on the market just about every day, Ian is one of the people you can rely on to test them all – from free to paid.

We’re thrilled that he shared his knowledge of tools with us at Social Media Marketing World this year and now I’ll share them with you.

Tools to Target the Right People

As Ian says, don’t sell hot dogs at a vegetarian conference. You have to know your audience before you can market to them successfully. The social tools below will help you identify and engage with active fans, influencers, and industry relevant people to follow.

Evan Prokop

4 Essential Trends in Social Media Marketing in 2014

Evan Prokop on Mar 30th, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Marketing World

michael stelzner

The energy was sky high at Social Media Marketing World this year.

Marketers, brands, consultants and business owners from over 40 different countries gathered together to learn about the latest innovations in social media marketing, rub shoulders with social media rockstars, and enjoy unprecedented networking opportunities. Having the event in beautiful San Diego CA didn’t hurt either.

I had the pleasure of sitting in the opening keynote speech from the conference organizer Michael Stelzner, and he did not disappoint. Setting the tone for the days to come, Michael discussed the trends that he thinks will be making the biggest impact in social media marketing in 2014. Smart marketers should take note, because his presentation was chock full of excellent opportunities for businesses to increase the value they are getting from social throughout the coming year and beyond. Below are four key takeaways:

Evan Prokop

5 LinkedIn Marketing Tips That Rock from Jason Miller of LinkedIn #SMMW14

Evan Prokop on Mar 29th, 2014     LinkedIn, Online Marketing, Social Media

Jason Miller LinkedIn Marketing #SMMW14

Once called the “ugly duckling of social media”, rising stock prices, an active community, a lucrative advertising platform and a heavy focus on content have made LinkedIn into one of the most attractive platforms for b2b marketers today. (Disclosure: LinkedIn is a TopRank Content Marketing client)

In a fast paced, entertaining and metal-infused presentation (the Kiss army appeared on several slides), Jason Miller of LinkedIn Marketing Solutions showed off the compelling opportunities which LinkedIn offers to marketers and businesses at Social Media Marketing World 2014.

If you haven’t taken advantage of the awesome marketing power of LinkedIn for your business, there has never been a better time to start. Here’s how:

Emily Bacheller

Employees Are Your Best Social Media Advocates – Here’s Why #SMMW14

Emily Bacheller on Mar 27th, 2014     Social Media, Social Media Marketing World

Jay Baer

What if I told you that you could increase the reach of your social content by a factor of ten by utilizing a resource that you already have?

What resource is this, you ask? Your employees.

Jay Baer, CEO of Convince and Convert explains that when your employees are satisfied with their job, they become your biggest brand advocates. True advocacy is born from culture, not technology or marketing.  Brand advocates, whether they are your customers or employees, appreciate and relate to the culture of your company.

Your employee’s happiness can also have a huge impact on your brand’s social media success. In fact, in 2012, 40 of the top companied to work for were also some of the most successful companies in social media.

Lee Odden

5 Must Read Perspectives on Social Media Marketing Strategy

Lee Odden on Mar 24th, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media

social media marketing strategy

The eternal debate in marketing: Strategy before tactics vs. Tactics to develop strategy.

So many companies have become comfortable reacting to industry trends and competitors with tactics, that they end up with wasted effort, poor performance and plenty of frustration. This is especially true in the world of social media marketing as companies roll out social media tactics only to be left wondering in 6 months what the ROI is.

Answering Why, for Who and with What tactics is essential for any marketing initiative. A confident and clear sense of purpose is highly motivating and inspires more meaningful and effective marketing.

Lee Odden

5 Social Selling Tactics to Attract, Engage & Convert More Customers

Lee Odden on Mar 20th, 2014     Online Marketing, Social Media

Social Selling

Outside of marketing and customer service, one of the fastest growing areas in the social media world is social selling. With billions of people connected to social networks for personal and business reasons, time and attention of prospects is both valuable and highly competitive.

Connections between people supported by social technologies have become more valuable than ever as trusted sources of information. Interactions with brands don’t have to happen on the corporate website anymore. From customer service to sales – social networks are powering important buyer and brand discussions from awareness to purchase to advocacy.

Lee Odden

Organic Facebook Marketing Tips From the Pros

Lee Odden on Mar 19th, 2014     Facebook, Online Marketing, Social Media

Facebook Marketing

Facebook has become quite a conundrum for many marketers. For years, companies of all sizes have invested in organic and paid efforts to grow their Facebook fans. The “like” served as an opt-in for consumers to receive brand messages sent “organically”.

But over the past few years, Facebook has diminished the organic reach of brand fan page messages to a thin percent of the total opt-in whole. Now the only option to reach fans is to pay for Facebook advertising which can be hit or miss and leaves organic reach all but non-existent.

For companies without large ad budgets, this is obviously a challenge. Luckily, there are options! Here are tips from our latest Social Media Marketing eBook featuring some of the top Facebook marketing experts. They offer insight that can help you regain and optimize some of your organic traction.

Lee Odden

5 LinkedIn Marketing Tips to Optimize Your Social Media Success

Lee Odden on Mar 11th, 2014     LinkedIn, Online Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Marketing World
LinkedIn

Image source: Slideshare

Last week we published the first Social Media Marketing World conference eBook and while it’s had over 15,000 views on Slideshare and many thousands of views here already, I think we’ve just seen the tip of the iceberg.

As a robust sized eBook, it’s full of practical advice including platform specific tips like the following 5 nuggets about LinkedIn.

With over 277 million members, 3.5 million active company profiles and 187 million unique visitors across LinkedIn web properties, there’s a remarkable opportunity for companies to connect with business professionals on LinkedIn. Luckily, when we interviewed a selection of SMMW14 speakers, 5 of them gave specific tips about how to optimize LinkedIn for social media marketing. Here are their excerpts from the SMMW14 eBook:

Lee Odden

Riding the Waves of Social Media – 38 Social Media Marketing Tips from #SMMW14

Lee Odden on Mar 6th, 2014     Marketing PR Conferences, Social Media, Social Media Marketing World

Lee Odden SurfingA few years back while vacationing in Oahu, we decided to take surfing lessons. Well, everyone but me.

I made up all kinds of excuses but when I saw my 8 year old daughter pop up like it was nothing, I had to try. The guy running the lessons had really been around and the young men helping him were clearly “all-in” for the surfing life. They were experts. With their help and my daughter’s example, I quickly went from disinterested to being eager to go again.

That story reminds me of how a lot of marketers take a turn with their digital and social media marketing skills. Getting inspired and then connected with people that really know what they’re doing can be a direct line from zero to social media hero.

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