social media strategy

12 Tools to Help You Optimize Your Social Media Marketing Results

Friez and Cleary at #SMMW15

Strategy gives you direction, but tools help you get there quicker, says Ian Cleary, founder, RazorSocial at Social Media Marketing World. Once you have a strategy, then you need tools to help you save time and provide value.

Twenty-six percent of marketers spend 6-10 hours a week on social media. Let’s explore twelve possible problems and the tools that can help solve those problems and make you more productive.

12 problems and the tools to solve them

1. People not seeing your content? Consider using PostPlanner, which was just a Facebook planner up until it recently added Twitter. You can –

  • Schedule content
  • Decide what type of content to share
  • Discover new content
  • Allows you to create a queue of content

The One Question You Must Ask And Answer to Win With Social Media Marketing

Understand the Why of Your Social Media Marketing“Can we increase our blog readership by 50% in the next 6 months?”

If you’re a digital marketing or social media professional, questions like this are probably pretty familiar.

For many companies, specific goals are a godsend since social media marketing is still a bit of an uncertainty. It gives those who are responsible for implementation something more tangible to focus their efforts on. I’ve seen it happen many times where an objective like this is communicated by a marketing director or VP and the marketing team jumped all over themselves and each other to provide compelling answers.

But I have to just shake my head when that happens.

Social Media Strategy: Where to Start & Why

social media strategy start

Where to Start Your Social Media Strategy

Whether you’re a bricks and mortar mom and pop business or a 100% online digital enterprise, NOT participating in social media is no longer an option. In many ways today’s social networks represent the new discovery engine. Consumers and business decision makers are sending their friends and colleagues to websites they like through their browsers and desktops and, increasingly, their mobile devices.

According to eMarketer, more than 1.4 billion people worldwide will use social networks in 2012. Although the global audience is massive, it is by no means unified, they caution. It’s clear that companies of all sizes need to embrace a social media strategy because what our connections are doing online will drive your customers’ behavior more and more. What still appears murky for many, however, is exactly where to start.

Social Media Night Out: 8 Tips To Get You Through The Evening

DJ NightclubAfter a long and stressful week at the office it’s time to kick back, relax, and make the most of your weekend.  The easy option might be to stay in, order take-out, or watch Golden Girls reruns.  However, you might also be ready to blow off some steam.  Let’s face it, as attractive as a lazy night on the couch sounds, you know once you put in the extra effort a night out will be much more fun.

Comparatively, there are two ways to plan a social media strategy.

  • Plan 1 consists of a lazy and solo mission where you simply share a few things here and there that are just a regurgitation of social media stories and promotions that your readers have already heard.

The 12 Days of Social Media & Content Marketing

12 Days of Social Media and Content MarketingThe team at TopRank Online Marketing would like to wish our online community a very merry holiday season.  I for one get very nostalgic around the holidays and count down the days (starting in October) until I get to gather with family and friends to share a meal and make new memories.

For many families, part of the holiday tradition includes singing carols and watching Christmas movies from their childhood.  There is one song in particular that gets stuck in my head every holiday season is The Twelve Days of Christmas.  For a fun spin on a classic we bring you some of our favorite tips for the 12 Days of Social Media, Content Marketing & SEO.

On the __ day of Christmas my true love gave to me…

Evaluate & Energize Your Social Content Marketing Strategy #SMBMSP48

#SMPMSP48 Crowd

Note from Ashley: Please welcome this guest post from Shawna Kenyon, an Associate Account Manager with TopRank Online Marketing.

As I settle in for my first Social Media Breakfast #SMBMSP48 at 514 Studios, I survey the area and see some familiar faces and others less familiar. As the caffeine starts to kick in, the stage is set and the crowd welcomes presenter Lee Odden. As an Associate Account Manager at TopRank Online Marketing, this isn’t the first time I have heard Lee speak about social media as it relates to content strategy, but I always learn something new each time.

Technology Marketing: Is Your B2B Social Media Strategy Sending Mixed Signals?

social media marketing

Is your social media strategy sending your customers mixed signals?

As a B2B organization with a focus on technology, you may believe that you are facing additional obstacles that your B2C counterparts are not.

Many of you have tried to implement social media in the past without much success.  However, you may still believe that B2C companies have it easier because they have a direct line to their consumers.  The good news is, you do too!  In fact, 58% of IT buyers use social media to make tech buying decisions.

Getting in front of the proper decision makers and influencers when selling SaaS, IT, or any other technology is not as hard as you may think.  It is imperative that you follow a series of social media best practices directed at finding, engaging, and motivating your social network to take action.

Social Media Marketing: Strategy to Commerce

social media marketingFor companies trying to make sense of social media and online marketing, it’s important to take a step back from all the “TwitFaceBlogTubeIn” mania for a second and look at the nature of how these things are going to work for the overall business.

There are many questions that need answers:  “Should we develop a strategy first before engaging?”,  “Should we experiment and develop a strategy as we go?”, “Will it ever be OK to ask customers if they want to buy directly within social channels or will we always have to tiptoe around the subject?”

Here are a few considerations to help answer those questions and establish the framework for a sustainable and successful social media marketing program.

Why Do So Many Companies Suck at Social Media?

Social Media FailLast night I had an enjoyable conversation with Scott Monty of Ford, Jeff Hayzlett (formerly CMO Kodak), Mike Monello from Campfire and our host Bob Knorpp of the famous BeanCast about a variety of topics including foursquare, Facebook, Hulu, social gaming and even small logos. One of the topics that emerged from that discussion was the astute observation of how many companies “suck” at social media.

The current iteration of what we all call social media has been around for at least 3-4 years but apparently brands are still irrelevant on Twitter and companies continue to blunder on Facebook and show a lack of understanding of what makes social media conversations succeed at reaching business goals.

Open Leadership: How Social Technology Can Transform the Way You Lead

The book, “Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies” by Forrester’s Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff offered companies a much-needed framework for companies to understand social technologies and consumer behaviors. It also  introduced the now popular four-step process for developing a social media strategy.

A lot has changed since we first interviewed Charlene Li about the Groundswell, including her move to begin the Altimeter Group. Other changes include blogging having met its match as a popular social technology with the exploding popularity of tools like Facebook and Twitter.

Charlene’s new book, “Open Leadership: How Social Technology Can Transform the Way You Lead”, is essentially about how leaders can tap into the power of the social technology revolution and how to be “open” while still maintaining control.

Thought Leadership on Social Media Strategy

With more businesses realizing the power of digital channels to nurture relationships, rally fans and build customer affinity, opportunity abounds for savvy professionals.

But with execution all over the board how should those who are new get started?

To answer that question, we posted thoughts from a variety of marketing and web professionals on social media strategy before tactics.

It’s an ongoing debate, but the consensus among the marketing and PR crowd is clear:  strategy before tactics is the logical approach for businesses to take when engaging in social media.

Sarah Evans provides a clever analogy: