Does Snark = Sales? What Consumers REALLY Want from Brands on Social Media

Social media marketers, do you feel a brief pang of envy when a brand gets sassy on Twitter or Facebook? Do you wish you had the brand identity and/or corporate backing to smack down a troll, a la Wendy’s?

Me too. It’s only natural. Even in a profession as inherently creative as marketing, some of us can fly our freak flags higher than others. If you’re working in financial services, or healthcare, or any number of staid verticals, odds are you have to keep your sarcasm in check.

We may never get the sweet satisfaction of seeing a tweet full of biting wit go viral. But we have to keep perspective. Are we here to get featured on Buzzfeed, or to generate revenue? Does the snark really translate to sales?

3 Important Ways Social Media Can Boost Your SEO

Today, there’s little doubt among marketers that SEO and social media are two must-have components of any effective digital marketing strategy. After all, SEO is arguably the founding-father-tactic of digital marketing, and social media is the place on the web where our audiences gather, share and engage every day.

But over the years, there’s been some confusion on how these two tactics work together to achieve marketing results—and understandably so. Back in 2010, Google told Search Engine Land’s Danny Sullivan that links shared on Facebook and Twitter were used as a ranking signal. Then in 2014, Google’s Matt Cutts released a video stating Facebook and Twitter pages were “currently” treated like any other web page for search—i.e. social media was no longer a direct ranking factor.

What Brands Need to Know About Instagram’s New ‘Paid Partnership’ Feature

Influencer marketing is booming—and it’s not hard to see why. Influencers lend authority and credibility to your brand and content, help connect you with new audiences, and typically deliver more ROI than traditional digital marketing tactics. As a result, brands large and small are forming both paid and unpaid partnerships with influencers—and using social platforms to spread their message.

For those brands and marketers engaging in paid partnerships with influencers on Instagram, a change is on the horizon. Last week, Instagram officially announced it would soon roll out its new “paid partnership with” tag for posts and stories.

Social Media Marketing Report: Does Your Engagement Measure Up?

If I had to sum up marketing’s relationship with social media in a single nerdy meme, it’d be this:

Yes, much as Obi-Wan Kenobi was dismayed to find that Anakin had turned to the dark side, many marketers feel betrayed by social media. Each platform offered the potential to build an audience and deliver content straight to their feeds. They were supposed to be a powerful tool for organic reach. But one by one, they fell to the dark side of the algorithm.

But don’t throw away your social media channels just yet. After all, if you strike them down, they will become more powerful (sorry, that’s the last Star Wars reference). Instead, let’s have a clear-eyed assessment of what organic engagement looks like on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, and see where to go from here.

8 Examples of Brands Using Instagram to Showcase Company Culture

In today’s business world, a strong company culture is no longer a “nice to have.” It’s a business imperative. In fact, according to Deloitte’s 2016 Global Human Capital Trends survey, 82% of respondents said they believe culture is a potential competitive advantage.

“Few factors contribute more to business success than culture—the system of values, beliefs, and behaviors that shape how real work gets done within an organization.” Deloitte states. “Culture brings together the implicit and explicit reward systems that define how an organization works in practice, no matter what an organizational chart, business strategy, or corporate mission statement may say.”

As a result, showcasing company culture has become a useful marketing tactic, with brands often using social media—especially Instagram—to get the word out.

5 Helpful Tips to Inspire Employee Advocacy on Social Media

When it comes to building out your brand’s social media marketing strategy, one of your primary objectives is crafting a multi-channel amplification plan for sharing content that raises awareness, fosters engagement, and ultimately helps drive new leads. For many, this means mapping tactics and time to specific brand-owned social channels.

But there may be one tactic and channel that’s missing from your mix: your employees and their respective social networks. Or to attach a marketing buzzword to this—employee advocacy.

Your employees are one of your most powerful social media marketing tools. They’re the people behind your brand, working hard to support your company’s mission and help achieve your business goals. They’re the people who have first-hand insights into your company’s culture, and the quality of your products or services. They’re the people who can lend some real credibility and authenticity to your marketing efforts.

We Answer 5 Common Questions People Have About Social Media Marketing

Like brushing our teeth or brewing a morning cup of coffee, checking in on what’s happening within our social networks has become part of the daily routine for most of us. In fact, 30% of all time spent online is on social networks, according to GlobalWebIndex (GWI).

As a result, social media has also become a routine marketing tactic for nearly every business, helping brands build awareness, share and interact with customers and prospects, and create another vital touch point in the changing customer journey.

But as the social media landscape continues to evolve, both green and seasoned marketing professionals are constantly searching for answers on how they can best leverage social media within their organizations’ marketing strategies.

Boost Your Social Media Advertising Success with These 6 Pro Tips!

Social media has become an important and necessary tactic within the digital marketing strategies of companies large and small—and it’s not hard to see why. Social media is part of the fabric of our daily lives, which gives brands and marketers the opportunity to create important connections with their desired audience.

But with nearly every brand using social media—as well as frequent tweaks to platform algorithms—brands and marketers are finding it increasingly difficult to stand out using organic tactics. As a result, more are paying to play these days by investing in social advertising to drive awareness and engagement, as well as sales and other conversions. In fact, late last year Statista forecasted worldwide social advertising spend to nearly double between 2014 ($16 billion) and 2016 ($31 billion).

What’s Next for Twitter? Social Domination or Eminent Failure?

Despite recent improvements to user experience and platform flexibility, the struggle to retain and attract new users—and grow revenue—is still real for Twitter. And, unfortunately, these may be the least of the platform’s worries these days.

From widespread trolling and harassment to simply having a confusing interface, Twitter is drawing criticism for nearly every aspect of its operation. In addition, after shutting down Vine and cutting more than 300 jobs last fall, more fuel was added to the claims that Twitter was getting closer to death.

So … Is Twitter Dying?

As an eternal optimist, I’m not ready to say Twitter’s fate is doomed. As WIRED’s Davey Alba said earlier this year, while Twitter may be a bit of a mess—it still has some real potential and value to offer.

3 New Facebook Updates, Features Businesses Should Take Advantage Of

From revamping its News Feed algorithm and page layouts to rolling out its own version of Snapchat last week, Facebook has been busy adding new features and capabilities over the past few months.

For the average user, these changes are making it easier and more fun to share and engage on the platform. For businesses, the changes are likely overwhelming, with many wondering how they can adapt to these changes, turn them into a marketing advantage and ultimately reach a piece of the platform’s 1.23 billion daily active users.

If you’re part of the latter scenario, we’d like to help you out a bit. Below we highlight some of the latest updates and new features that businesses should take note of, as well as some tips on how to take advantage of them to further your social media marketing efforts.

Superheroes of Social Media: Your Must-See Guide to #SMMW17

In a past life, I was a minor internet celebrity. One big perk to that dubious career was being a vendor at San Diego Comic Con for seven straight years. Our little indie booth saw visits from superheroes and celebrities alike. Doctor Who, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, DC & Marvel Comics: It’s truly a nerdy paradise.

Now I’m headed back to the convention center for a different kind of meetup: Social Media Marketing World 2017. I’m expecting fewer costumed superheroes (although with the right pair of glasses I could pull off a Seth Godin costume). But there will be plenty of astonishing and amazing marketers to meet.

These folks may not be able to leap tall buildings in a single bound—though I hear Ann Handley has an impressive long jump—but when it comes to getting results on social media, they’re nothing short of heroic.

12 Helpful Tips for Effectively Using Social Media at Events

From industry conferences to professional summits to intimate roundtables, most of us marketers have attended at least one real-world event to learn, be inspired, represent our brands, and network with one another.

And after attending the 2016 MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum last fall, I can tell you one thing’s for sure: The face-to-face time you get with industry thought leaders, peers, customers, and prospects at these real-life events is simply priceless. But that doesn’t mean we should forget about your digital tools—especially social media—to make the absolute most out of your attendance.

With that said, as TopRank Marketing CEO Lee Odden, and team members Ashley Zeckman and Josh Nite, prepare to head off to Social Media Marketing World in sunny San Diego, CA this week—what better time to highlight some tips on effectively utilizing social media to engage, connect, and build personal and brand awareness at an event?