This year, Stikky Media attended Social Media Camp 2019. Read on to learn about our experience at this unique Canadian social media conference, topics covered by the speakers and our key takeaways.
Want to learn how to market to the movers and shakers, the trend setter – the elusive 20 something year old? Who better to tell you than Ethan Dennett – the 20 year old member of the Stikky Media team. Read on for GenZ marketing tips and considerations for reaching this unique audience – in Ethan’s own words.
The modern advertisement industry started in conjunction with the development of modern psychology. The idea that the average person could be suggestible enough to buy a coca-cola was groundbreaking to advertisers.
As a marketer or business owner, you may find yourself thinking about which digital marketing channel to invest your budget in. You have a wide variety of tools at your disposal including email, content marketing, and social media, so choosing the best one for your budget and for your organization can be challenging.
If you are looking for strong ROI, you might choose to devote a portion of your resources to email marketing. If, on the other hand, you have limited resources and are not in a hurry to increase your sales or profits, you might go solely with social media.
Can’t decide? The good news is that you don’t have to choose between email marketing and social media—the two channels work best when used together. You can maximize your email marketing strategies by integrating them with your social media campaigns and vice versa.
Email and social media may seem like two entirely different marketing channels, but they actually have a lot in common. Both of these channels provide you with the opportunity to increase traffic to your website, build relationships with new customers, maintain these relationships and earn your customers’ loyalty, and of course, significantly boost your company’s ROI.
More than the images that it is so well known for, Instagram makes imagery engaging, evoking primal emotions – such as humor, concern, awe, or intrigue.
Instagram is another platform with which to work with nonprofits. With most users being of a younger demographic, Instagram will very likely reach many subscribers and members that other forms of social media. currently does not reach. More than 500 million people have an Instagram account and 59 percent of online adults ages 18-29 use the network. More than 300 million of them use it daily.
What makes Instagram different from social media networks such as Facebook or Twitter is the way people use it.
Twitter is a tricky to work with due to the limitations of the media. Tweets are limited to 240 characters, meaning your message must either be brief and to the point, or split over multiple tweets. In addition, there is no tried-and-true formula for creating the perfect tweet. Your audience may respond to content that another group’s audience may not. The best judge of audience response is likes and retweets, with the latter helping spread your message to others who might not be subscribed to your feed.
Find Your Voice
It is best to develop a distinct voice for your your organization, allowing tweets to be differentiated from the rest. Find a voice that works for your organization, your follower, any members of your organization, and so on. Just remember, social media is about trial and error. Try something, look at how people react, adjust, and try again.
Tweets that work well tend to:
- Have a personal, human voice.
- Contain interactive media (memes [material – such as images or snippets of text, that is rapidly passed around the internet], photos, vines, videos, links).
- Provide updates of real interest to followers.
- Start a discussion among followers.
- Inspire the readers with compelling and inspiring quotes
In order for tweets to reach as many people as possible, some general rules of thumb apply:
- Keep your tweet at 100 characters or less.
- Use no more than two hashtags per tweet (Hashtags are keywords related to the topic or theme of your tweet. A hashtag is marked with the pound sign (#) before the word or phrase.)
- Tell your followers to re-tweet (or “pass it on” as we say).
- Tweet during business hours and on weekends
- Ask service leaders to tweet to their audience for you.
An active Facebook page creates opportunities for new people to discover your organization, and can serve as a path for connecting subscribers with new content being offered by your organization. People who “like” your page may see your posts in their News Feed when they visit Facebook. They can then like and share your posts with others, distributing your message to those who are not currently part of your page. At the very least, a business-centric Facebook page can contain contact information allowing visitors to find your online presence and store.
When to Use a Facebook Page?
A Facebook Page is ideal for organizations wishing to expand and connect with the ever-growing global network of Facebook users. For many non-profit organizations, having a single Facebook page helps people find, and stay up-to-date with, a unified voice and message.
What is a Facebook Page For?
A dedicated Facebook page can inform visitors of your organization’s message, relevant news items, developments within your organization, new products, and links to news items of interest to you and your subscribers. It allows you to respond in real time to developments around the world — offering your thoughts, opinions, and reassurances on a variety of subjects.
We Have a Page, Now What?
Creating a business-centric Facebook page is simple, as it only requires the following:
- About – Give people a quick preview of what your organization is about and what its message is.
- Profile Image – Help people recognize your organization when they receive a post from your page in their News Feed.
- Videos – Present infomercials, advertisements, personal messages, breaking news, and the like in either in audio-only formats (thus preserving anonymity) or in full audio-visual releases.
- Events – Your page is a great way to direct visitors to an online calendar that indicates when major events involving your organization will occur.
- Notes – A section that can be used for longer messages or statements.
Verified Facebook Business Page
If your organization qualifies, you can be eligible for a Verification Badge, which would tell your followers that any content being posted is official and from your organization itself. In addition, a verified page will show up higher in search results to attract more visitors.
Posting to Your Facebook Business Page
The primary communication channel on Facebook is through posts from your organization. This is the easiest and simplest way to contact followers. The actual posts themselves are simple to create – your updates can be about anything you think subscribers would be interested in. After you have published your post, Facebook gives the option to:
- Give Important Posts More Attention.
- Hide a Public Post from Your Timeline so not visible to the public.
- Delete a Post from Your Page.
Video on Facebook
Video posts perform well on Facebook and are an effective way to create a visual connection between the information presented and subscribers. More than 65% of all video views are happening on mobile devices as people turn to Facebook at different times and places throughout the day.
If your organization has a YouTube channel, be aware that videos uploaded directly to Facebook have proven more successful than those linked to other video players. Part of the reason is that videos uploaded directly to Facebook fill the entire width of and play directly in one’s News Feed, offering a seamless viewing experience. Directly upload videos also autoplay, making them more eye-catching than a video thumbnail. If you link to a video hosted on another site like YouTube, the link appears with a small thumbnail from the video.
Control your Facebook Business Page Content
In the Settings section, you have control over your page and the way your content appears. You have general controls for page and post visibility, whether people can post and/or comment on your page, and who can make changes to your page. You can also control the apps you use on your page, and create posts from your organization’s email.
Achievement: A Non-profit Facebook Page Success Story
Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s
Campaign Goals: The Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s is an event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support, and research. The Facebook campaign aimed to recruit participants for the walk, as well as fundraising for the organization.
Impact: Using Facebook, the Alzheimer’s Association organized and rallied supporters from across the country to its yearly fundraising efforts.
The Alzheimer’s Association Facebook page directed users to the Alzheimer’s Association website in order to create awareness about the Walk. During the 2015 Walk season, nearly one-quarter of overall traffic to the Walk to End Alzheimer’s website was referred from Facebook. Facebook was a significant source of referral traffic for online registrations.
Based on anecdotal evidence, members often want to help, but do not always know , while those seeking help or additional information may not necessarily know where and how to find out it. By creating a Facebook page and offering information about specific ways members can subscribe, serve, and support your organization, they will know more, and what they can do to share your message.
Generating sales leads online for B2B products and services can seem counter intuitive at first. After all, those business deals tend to rely on personal relationships developed over years of networking and sales prospecting. In fact, I know a few B2B salespeople who tend to avoid doing any of their networking online. They claim, “not enough time,” “not efficient,” “not how I work.” That is, until I explain the top 5 factors influencing B2B sales lead generation.
Once sales leaders understand the connection between these critical B2B marketing factors and revenue, ears perk up. Funny how that works. (more…)
Testimonials are a tried-and-true marketing technique that can help overcome objections and convince people to buy your product or service. They’re used everywhere: on TV, in advertorials, even on the web. (We have ours too!) They’re especially useful for more expensive products or services, where the investment is significant and potential customers need some reassurance that it will perform as expected. However, testimonials can be tricky; especially on the internet, they can be made up or paid, and it’s really difficult to verify their truthfulness. (more…)
While blogs are the cornerstone of content marketing, when you compare the number of successful blogs against the total number of blogs that exist on the internet, you’ll notice the ratio is very, very small. Only a fraction of blogs build an audience of more than a few hundred, and only a few rare ones get subscriptions of 100K+. Ever wondered what these top blogs have in common? In this blog, we’ll share 6 must-haves of successful blogs. (more…)
I don’t know a blog writer who doesn’t go through writer’s block sometimes. Yet to keep your website fresh and current, you need to keep updating your blog with interesting content that keeps your visitors coming back for more. So what do we do when we’re really, really out of ideas and still need to write blog posts?
Fortunately, there are content generators we can use to get our brains storming. In the three examples I used, you input a noun or two and the generator spits out sentences (blog post titles, mosty) incorporating those nouns. (more…)
If you want to do it right, social media management takes a lot of time. So much so that it’s now some peoples’ full-time job. But not everyone has the budget to hire a social media manager or coordinator; enter Social Media Automation Tools. Programs like Buffer, Social Oomph, Hootsuite and many, many more all promise to make your social media management easier, more seamless and less time-consuming. However, it’s vital to not automate everything. In this blog, we’ll break down 4 social media tasks you should never automate and why.
Social media is still social, and nobody likes to talk to a robot when it comes to developing relationships (or talking in general). Some things still need to be done in real time, by a real human. Here are some social media tasks that should be done by humans, not automation. (more…)
Say your goodbyes: it’s now impossible to make “post by others” show on your Facebook business page timeline. We have a super popular post about how to make that possible, but it dates from a few years, and Facebook business pages have changed a lot since then.
However, we still receive questions and comments about why the advice in that post doesn’t work anymore; it’s because you simply cannot do it anymore. The new Facebook business page has a completely different structure. (more…)
Do you know what’s the story behind your favourite hashtags? Learn more about #FollowFriday, #fail, #Shatnerday and more.
I've fallen in love with Instagram in the last week or so. Here's why you should too.
As a digital marketing professional, I’m lucky to live in one of the most social (media) cities in Canada. Many of our social media influencers were among the first to take up Twitter as a community-building tool, and we have some of the foremost social media professionals this side of the Rockies doing their work in our beautiful city. It might be because social media work is rather flexible and can be done from anywhere; where else but in Victoria would you want to live if you had the chance? (more…)
We live in a pretty awesome place. There is the ocean a stone’s throw away, a beach at every corner, the mildest weather in Canada, mountains all around us, the best hiking trails in the world, some of the best food on the West Coast, and many, many other perks. But one thing that only locals know is Victoria’s highly engaged social media crowd.
Our dinner choices are fueled from blogs and UrbanSpoon reviews; our events are plastered all over Facebook and Twitter and are always full; our people use Facebook Messenger, Snapchat and direct messages on Twitter to meet each other for coffee or dinner. Hey, we’ve been named the Canadian Capital of Selfies for a reason! (more…)
Content this, content that, content here, content there: content is everywhere. I’ve made my argument elsewhere that it’s an important part of your digital strategy, no matter your business size or type. And in order to reach your marketing and sales objectives, your content must be excellent. But I realized something lately: that lots of people don’t really understand what excellent content means, or how to reach that level of quality. The web is clogged with sub-par, badly written, uninteresting, plagiarized and useless content. (more…)
You have a new business Twitter profile and you’d like to get more followers. You want followers who will actually pay attention to your tweets and who are part of a relevant audience, be that locally or within a certain sphere of industry. You’d like more followers, and for free…
Free Followers – Without Spamming or Cheating?
Free Followers – That aren’t in distant regions or irrelevant as a target market?
Since its meteoric rise to popularity in 2011, Pinterest has garnered a lot of attention from marketers and social media professionals. We know that visual marketing is a very effective way to reach your target market–after all, “a picture is worth a thousand words” isn’t a cliché for no reason. Pinterest, with its focus on beautiful visuals, easy sharing and an intuitive user interface, has everything marketers need to get their products known and shared. (more…)
Any digital marketer worthy of his or her name will tell you that email is still the best and most reliable way to connect with your customers. What’s better than getting directly into their computers and phones?
Guy Steeves of Constant Contact presented a useful talk about e-newsletter marketing, and why it’s still the “sexiest new social media app” (direct quote) around. Here are the highlights of his presentation. (more…)
Having a blog is now pretty much standard fare for business content marketing. Most companies and organizations have blogs. But only some of them update it. And then only a portion of those actually does it well.
As a professional blogger, I’ve seen it all: the ultra-serious finance blog, the light-hearted lifestyle blog, humour blogs, review blogs, health blogs, news blogs… pretty much anything you can imagine. If you can imagine it, there’s a blog out there about it. But because there are so many of them, a majority of the blogs that exist don’t have much of a readership. There’s only so much human attention to spare between millions of different blogs! (more…)
Everyone tells you your small or medium sized business MUST be on the social media channels. There are a growing numbers of channels, each of them becoming increasingly important in its own way.
So you’ve signed up for the four best-known social media channels:
You’ve written (or had someone else write) a blog post, and now it should be posted on all four channels. There! Done. Right? (more…)
Lent is a 40-day period during which practicing Catholics give up something–usally a bad habit like smoking or drinking–to commemorate Jesus' 40 days of fasting in the desert.
But it's not just good for individuals. As business owners doing internet marketing, we can also develop bad social media habits. Want to give up something for Lent? Start by these less than desirable things we do on Facebook and Twitter.
1. Stop shilling on Facebook
Facebook may seem like a great place to promote or sell your services, but doing so insistently (or "shilling") will only drive followers away. Remember the social media mantra "People connect with people" and start behaving like a person instead of a business. Share employees' good news. Post pictures of your office. Ask interesting questions. You can even find ways to present a new product or service without making it look like an advertisement.
2. Stop Retweeting
Although retweeting can help spread a piece of content, a timeline that is filled with only retweets is not very attractive to new followers. Again, "people connect with people", and followers want to connect with a real person who has thoughts and emotions. Use Twitter to spread your brand's personality around, not other people's. And if you absolutely must retweet that piece, add a personal comment to it.
3. Move one-on-one conversations away from Facebook comments
This happens more often than you think, especially in customer relations. People are not interested in reading about how you're going to solve a client's problem. Whenever a Facebook comment risks pulling you into a long conversation, provide a contact email to move it to a more private space. Fans will thank you for it.
4. Stop using so many hashtags
Sure, hastags are useful to put a tweet in context, especially during major events. However, hashtagging every word from your tweet not only makes it unreadable, but it also makes you look like you can't formulate a coherent thought. Also, it's totally unethical to use popular hashtags that are unrelated to your business for promotion purposes. People pick up on it… and then pick on you.
5. Stop pre-programming your social media updates
Sure, it might seem useful to program Facebook and Twitter updates ahead of time, but you end up looking really insensitive if something major happens. On the other hand, taking advantage of timely events (as long as they're not tragic) to promote your products or services can work really well! Follow Oreo's example and tweet appropriately!
So, which of these bad habits are you willing to give up for Lent? Share your thoughts with us!
No, we’re not talking about a new wine-related social network (although that would be awesome), but rather a new video-based app now owned by Twitter called Vine. It’s all the rage these days, with celebrities like Tyra Banks and Emmy Rossum posting Vines on their Twitter feeds.
Here’s a quick Vine I made especially for this occasion:
— Anabelle Bernard F(@anabellebf) February 6, 2013
1. What does it do?
Vine is super simple: you take a 6-second video that the app posts as a video loop on Twitter and on Vine feeds. The video is looped automatically.
2. How does it work?
You start by downloading the app on your iPhone. There’s a simple tutorial in the app to show you how to make a video–it works by the touch of your finger.
After making your video, you can share it with your social networks.
3. Where can I share the videos?
The Twitter integration makes it easy to share the videos directly with your followers on Twitter. The app also connects to Facebook so you care share it with your fans as well. If you embed your Twitter feed on your website, you’ll also be able to share your videos that way.
4. How can I use it?
Vine can be useful for your internet marketing in a variety of ways. It gives you an opportunity to be creative and show your business from a fun, creative angle. You can take a funny video of the staff or show how your product works.
6 seconds doesn’t seem like much, but if you watch other people’s videos, you’ll see that you can fit in a lot of content in these few seconds. The advantage: you can make an impact before your audience’s attention span fades. And the best videos? People will watch them over and over again.
Think of Vine as a video version of Twitter: conciseness and originality are key. As with any new social network, it’ll take a while to unlock its full potential, but Vine’s popularity is growing so quickly that it can’t be ignored for very long.
A new year is upon us, and with it comes those pesky resolutions. Join a gym. Quit smoking. Eat less cheese. Eat more cheese. Whatever your intentions, it’s time to make them a reality and start the year off right.
That said, most New Year’s resolutions fail miserably. So why not choose a resolution that’s actually doable? One that will increase credibility and visibility and ultimately boost sales?
Here are 4 social media resolutions you’ll actually want to keep:
1. I will write more high quality, original content. And then I will share it.
Google loves fresh content. Loves it. And so do your readers! Compelling, unique content is the foundation for a solid online presence. It’s what makes the internet tick.
That said, make it your goal this year to sit down and produce. Write better blogs. Write more blogs. Write website content. Make videos. Create visuals. Create interviews. Write things people actually want to read, so when you share them on social networks they’ll be shared and re-shared, increasing your SEO, your traffic and ultimately your sales.
2. I will learn to love Google+.
Despite the hype, businesses have been slow to embrace Google+. Whether they deem it too complicated, too unnecessary or too different (from Facebook, natch), they’re missing out on one of the most valuable social platforms around.
The truth is, Google+ affects your business whether you’re signed up or not. When your customers search on Google, your page, along with your profile image and recent posts, may show up on the right-hand side of the results when relevant to a customer’s search. Relevant posts, photos and videos can also show up within search results for your page’s followers. And if you’re not signed up? Well, you won't have all of this tasty exposure. Sign up immediately and reap the benefits of this SEO bonanza.
3. I will network with the social media community, both online and off
Here in Victoria, we’re lucky to have an incredibly active social media community. Not only do we interact online, but we also hang out at countless real-world events, from Social Media Workshops and Camps to Tweetups and Twestivals. Heck, mayor Dean Fortin even signed an official document proclaiming June 30th as “Social Media Day.”
When you take the time to cultivate meaningful offline relationships with social media movers and shakers—relationships that consist of more than just retweets and likes—you’ll take your online presence to the next level. In addition to learning tips and tricks from the best of the best, you'll increase your business exposure, boost your credibility and maybe even transform followers into customers. You’ll have the chance to help and be helped, and solidify your brand as a dynamic, informed and engaged member of the community.
4. I will respond to all comments in a timely manner (even if they’re negative)
Treat comments as a good thing, even if they’re not what you want to hear. After all, comments are evidence of community, and community is what will propel your business forward.
Take the time to individually respond to each person, spending extra time turning the negative experiences into positive ones. Just don’t forget that some commenters are trolls for the sake of being trolls, so don’t take it personally if you can’t turn around 100% of the negativity. Even if you’re unsuccessful, other users will appreciate your efforts and remember your good faith.
What are your social media marketing resolutions for 2013?
We all know the best form of credibility is word of mouth. But with so many self-professed social media gurus these days, it can be hard to separate yourself from the not-so-credible pack.
Even if you go out and create a branded, multi-channel social media presence with consistent logos, colours and messaging, you’re not guaranteed to earn anyone’s trust. It’s a start—but it’s not enough.
So how do you earn trust and start building real relationships online? It won’t happen overnight, but here are a few easy ways to get started:
Chances are, your online marketing strategy involves multiple social media platforms and multiple employees. Having a consistent look and feel (name, logo, colours) across all of your accounts is the first step to tying it all together, but you’ll need to go even further to really gain your customers’ trust.
To avoid coming off as disjointed and fragmented (and filling customers with doubt as to exactly what your brand stands for), you’ll need to define a few things. Is your brand’s personality/voice fun? Funny? How funny? What’s inappropriate and what’s not? What’s your area of expertise? What topics do you not want to touch on?
And because people will be talking about your brand whether you’re on that particular channel or not, it’s also important to claim as many profiles as possible. That way, you can not only moderate what people are saying about you, but also avoid confusion as to which social media account is your official profile, and which ones are controlled by the masses.
The whole point of social media is to engage, converse, listen, share, discuss, chat. It’s a two-way conversation, not a billboard.
Do your posts invite others to engage with your brand, or are you blanketing them with advertisements? To boost the conversation, get personal. Rather than posting product information, post the story behind the product. Post interesting/humorous/thought-provoking content, ask your fans for their opinions on topics related to your business, give fans a behind-the-scenes look at your business, and always, always, always respond to individual comments (even if they’re negative).
Photos, videos and infographics get more views than a straight-text post, so don’t be afraid to mix it up. Your fans and followers will thank you for it.
Build the right relationships
Are you hanging out with the wrong crowd? I’m not talking thugs and vandals—I’m talking people who don’t inspire you, who don’t teach you, who don’t add value to your business in any way, shape or form. It’s easy to become obsessed with increasing your online following—after all, a business with 2000 followers looks way more credible than one with only 50 followers—but that number is meaningless unless it contains both your core audience and other industry insiders.
Take the time to research the people you befriend online so you can cultivate real, meaningful relationships. When you hang out with people who actually care about your industry, your business and what you have to say, word will spread and your business will thrive.
Create your own content
Sharing other people’s content is lovely and generous, but it’s even more important to create your own content. Without sharing your own thoughts, words and expertise, customers won’t get to know you, the brand. They may know what you do, but they won’t see your company as a leader in its field—one they can trust, follow and return to again and again for the best information.
You don’t have to post original content every day, but don’t forget to throw your own ideas into the mix. If you don’t, you’ll be missing out on incredible opportunities to bring people even closer to your brand.
I don't know about you, but I am a visual person—especially when it comes to connecting with people. So, the fact that LinkedIn has edited the layout of the personal profile to create a more visual design is definitely a plus in my books. The announcement, made by LinkedIn in mid-October, will also see more graphic visuals that will make them easier to understand and see where possible connections exist. For instance, you will be able to see a visual presentation showing which companies your connections work for (perhaps one of them is your dream company!).
Status updates will also have more prominent real estate on the page, which will encourage us to share more (which is, after all, the power of LinkedIn). The experience section will also display in a more interactive way to make it easier for connections to read and for us to edit. P.S. The mobile app for iPhone and Android has been updated (13 Nov) to include the ability to add a new headline, recent skills or a new position.
Here's an example of the new profile layout from LinkedIn's blog:
So, just as we are navigating our way around the new company pages that were rolled out in September 2012, we now get to switch (or divide) our focus onto our personal page as well. The good news, as I understand it, is that the personal page changes will be introduced more gradually over the next few months. If you are eager, you can request an invitation to have your page updated to the new layout by visiting the LinkedIn sample profile page.
Let us know what you think about the new profile layout and how you will use it to tell your professional story, share more with your connections and discover new people and opportunities.
Want to know what the world is talking about right now? Looking for a juicy search term? Need to kill a few hours? Then check out these powerful social search engines:
A real-time social intelligence engine that analyzes activity across all the major social networks. Bottlenose’s fancy algorithm, called “StreamSense,” uses in-house natural-language processing, personalization and semantic techniques to figure out trending topics and trending content.
Their never ending sea of updates is called a “stream,” and gives users a comprehensive overview of top links (including newspaper articles), recent posts, trending topics, trending images and recent comments for any given search term. You can even check out trending people, which is great for connecting similarly-minded folks.
Bottlenose launched its public beta form in May 2012. Since then, it has fielded 3 acquisition offers (including one suspected offer from Twitter) and scored nearly $1 million in financing from ff Venture Capital and Prosper Capital.
A conversation search engine that lets you explore top links, tweets, photos, videos and “experts.” You can instantly see the number of mentions—by the minute, hour or day—for any term, phrase, username link or hashtag. Topsy also features a special influence algorithm that displays the most pertinent and popular social results, but the real gem is the social analytics tool that lets you visually compare up to 3 queries.
As a testament to their powerful social analytics, Topsy expects to index and measure approximately 250 billion items by the end of 2012, with over 16 trillion pre-computed metrics.
A simple, easy-to-use tool that measures over 100 social media properties directly, including Twitter, Facebook, FriendFeed, YouTube, Digg, Google etc. View top keywords, top users, top hashtags, sources, reach and even sentiment (positive, neutral, negative).
Social Mention is pretty basic, but it does dive into some deeper measurements:
Strength: The likelihood that your brand is being discussed in social media
Sentiment: The ratio of mentions that are generally positive to those that are generally negative
Passion: A measure of the likelihood that individuals talking about your brand will do so repeatedly
Reach: A measure of the range of influence
Remember when event notifications used to be fun? When they were real invites to real events you actually wanted to attend? With people you liked?
Blogging is great for business, but it’s a tricky world to navigate. Between concept and promotion and the writing itself, it’s easy to fall into these deadly traps.
Lack of engagement. Robotic presence. Potentially awkward timing. We all know your business can suffer due to excessive auto-posting, but what about your personal life? Ever thought about the consequences of spamming your friends with intimate details that may harm your reputation—both online and off?
Everyone loves a good statistic. Facebook users create 3.2 billion likes and comments every day. Only 5% of online adults use Tumblr. There is a 33% chance that a peanut grown in the U.S. will end up as peanut butter.
Fascinating stats. But can you trust them?
When done right, Facebook contests are a fun and relatively easy way to expose your business to the masses. But how do you do them right?
Your blog is engaging. It’s authoritative. Sometimes it’s even funny. But is it all it can be? Here are a few easy ways to spruce up your blog and keep readers coming back for more.
Human beings are creatures of habit, and it’s no accident we evolved this way. Our routines make us more efficient and more productive, and save our brains from the torments of overthinking.
1000 Facebook fans for only $14!
10000 Twitter followers for only $150!
Sounds like a heck of a deal, but when has it ever been a good idea to buy friends?
Social media isn’t a 9 to 5 job. Customers are online and active at all hours of the day, so if you’re only posting during work hours, you may not be reaching your most engaged and receptive audience.
Back in the olden days (circa 2008), travel used to require a Lonely Planet, a detailed itinerary and a packed tour bus. You might have jumped online once a week to let your family know you’re still alive, but other than that, you had to rely on your trusty guidebook to get you from point A to point B. It was great at the time, but thankfully the travel world has moved on to something bigger and better. Now, all you need to see the world is a sense of adventure and an internet connection.
As you’ve probably heard by now, Facebook quietly pulled an email switcheroo. They disabled your primary email address and replaced it with an @facebook.com address, which you probably never even knew you had.
The world is outraged at this unforeseen (and unannounced event), but it’s really the least of your worries. Facebook is full of unwanted default settings that threaten your privacy and your peace of mind.
Wondering why your Facebook page isn’t performing well? The answer may lie in an unexpected place: search engine optimization. Read on to learn how to optimize your Facebook page.
Facebook pages are a great way to promote your business online, but only if you can be found. Luckily for you, Facebook, in partnership with UK-based marketing agency Distilled, just released a neat video that shows you exactly how to boost your Facebook page ranking in search engines. Aimed at business owners, not SEO masters, the video gives an overview of what search engine optimization actually is, and lays the groundwork for more traffic, more likes and more online success.
The video is a little long, so here’s a breakdown of the key points:
1. Include keywords.
Search engines rank websites on extremely complicated algorithms, but one thing’s for sure: The top-ranked websites contain the key search phrases people are looking for. This principle also applies to Facebook pages, so make sure your page contains the appropriate search terms. The best place to put them? The ‘About’ section. Fill that space with keyword-rich info about your business, such as your services and location.
2. Choose an effective user name.
Usernames are all about balance. If you choose an obscure name, nobody will be able to find you. And if you choose a name that is too specific, users will be less likely to ‘like’ your page.
The actual name of your business is typically your best bet because that’s how most people will search for you. Don’t forget to claim your username for your Facebook web address!
3. Generate likes and links.
Because so many websites want to rank for the same keywords, search engines take another metric into account: the number and quality of links pointing back to the site. The better the links, the more the “trustworthy” the website is considered to be and the higher it will rank in search results.
Every time a user likes your page, a link will appear on their profile. And because most profiles are public, search engines will pick up on these links and push your page higher up in the search results. All the more reason to build an exceptional page that people will want to engage with.
4. Purchase Facebook ads.
Already have great content? Facebook ads are another way to gain more visitors and more likes.
5. Set up your business as a Facebook Place.
If you’re a local, physical business, make sure you’re set up as a Facebook Place, which allows users to check in at your location. When they check in, they will immediately be presented with a like button. You can also offer discounts or special promotions as additional incentives to like your page.
6. Link your Facebook page to your website, and vice versa.
Facebook provides a variety of plug-ins to allow your website visitors to easily like and comment on your content. But not all plugins have links to your Facebook page that the search engines can read, so be sure to add a direct link to your Facebook page from your website.
Click to launch video:
There’s no doubt that social media is a valuable marketing tool. It’s free. It’s fun. It has incredible reach. But it also has to be maintained. It’s not enough to sign up for a few social media accounts and call it a day—you have to regularly update them with interesting news, photos and tidbits. It can be tough to keep up the conversation, but there are plenty of easy ways to keep the social media content flowing.
In response to the overwhelming desire for up-to-date social media and tourism statistics, here are some new numbers for 2012.
(UPDATE: We have now updated this post to include new and additional statistics from 2013. These are indicated in blue text. Note that in most cases we have not completely replaced the 2012 statistics, but added new metrics we felt were relevant to the information.)
In response to the overwhelming desire for up-to-date social media and tourism statistics, here are some new numbers for 2012. (Please note: Stikky Media did not create these statistics. For a list of primary sources, see below).
The world is expected to witness 1 billion arrivals by the end of 2012, according to the World Travel Market. And as a result, the relationship between travel and technology is closer than ever, with businesses continuing to turn to social media to promote their services and reach customers in a more intimate and personal way.
By 2015, 9 out of 10 consumers will have a mobile subscription.
- 29% of travelers have used mobile apps to find flight deals
- 30% have used mobile apps to find hotel deals
- 15% have downloaded mobile apps specific to upcoming vacations
- 85% of leisure travelers use their smartphone while abroad
- 72% post vacation photos on a social network while still on vacation
- 46% check in to a location (eg Facebook and FourSquare) while on vacation
- 70% update their Facebook status while on vacation
- 61% of US travelers report using social media while on vacation
- 85% of travelers use smartphones while on vacation, and 46% use tablets
- The most popular use of smartphones while traveling is for finding restaurants (36% for smartphones, 21% for tablets) and accessing social media (32% for smartphones, 19% on tablets)
- In 2012, 57% of business travelers used a mobile device to book travel
- More than 40% of online traffic related to travel comes from mobile devices
- 44% of travelers use their phones to research travel while they’re actually traveling
Top five uses of smartphones while traveling:
- Take photos
- Use map features
- Search restaurants
- Search activities and attractions
- Check in prior to flight
- 92% of consumers around the world say they trust earned media, such as word-of-mouth and recommendations from friends and family, above all other forms of advertising
- an increase of 18% since 2007
- 70% of global consumers say online consumer reviews are the second most trusted form of advertising
- an increase of 15 percent in four years
- Only 47% of consumers around the world say they trust paid television, magazine and newspaper ads
- confidence has declined by 24%, 20% and 25% respectively since 2009
Despite these numbers, the majority of ad dollars are still spent on traditional or paid media.
Results of the Nielsen 2013 survey:
- 84% of consumers trust word-of-mouth recommendations, or earned media, above all other forms of advertising.
- 69% trust owned advertising, in the form of content of branded websites—up 9 percentage points from 2007
- 68% trust consumer opinions posted online
- Traditional ads still strong: 62% trust TV ads, and 60% trust magazines. Only newspaper ads showed a decline, from 63 to 61%.
Increased trust in online and mobile ads:
- 56% of respondents trust consumer-oriented email messages
- 48% trust ads in search engine results, online videos, or on social networks
- 42% trust banner ads, up from 26% in 2007
- 45% trust display ads on mobile devices
- word-of-mouth formats—earned media and consumer reviews online—prompt the highest levels of consumer action—84% of people will take action thanks to the former and 70% to the latter.
- Roughly 2/3rds of respondents take action some of the time based on ads in traditional media, and half are willing to engage based on social network and mobile display ads.
Post-vacation, 46% of travelers post hotel reviews.
- 40% post activity/attraction reviews
- 40% post restaurant reviews
- 76% post vacation photos to a social network
- 55% “liked” Facebook pages specific to a vacation
Social media has a huge influence on travel bookings. Of those who used social media to research travel plans, only 48% stuck with their original travel plans.
- 33% changed their hotel
- 10% switched resorts
- 10% changed agent/operator/website
- 7% holidayed in a different country
- 5% switched airlines
- 69 million monthly visitors
- More than 60 million travel reviews and opinions from travelers around the world
- More than 90 percent of topics posted in the TripAdvisor forums are replied to within 24 hours
- 82 million people have downloaded a TripAdvisor app
- 2800 new topics are posted every day to the TripAdvisor forums
- More than 150 million reviews from over 60 million members worldwide
- 900 million monthly users at the end of March 2012
- 488 million monthly active mobile users
- Approximately 80% of monthly active users are outside the US and Canada
- More than 300 million photos uploaded to Facebook per day
- An average of 3.2 billion Likes and Comments generated by Facebook users per day
- More than 42 million Pages with ten or more Likes
- Facebook is available in more than 70 languages
- 1.23 billion monthly active users as of December 2013
- 945 million monthly users of Facebook mobile products
- Approximately 81% of daily active users are outside the US and Canada
- Photo uploads total 300 million per day
- Twitter search is one of the most heavily-trafficked search engines in the world, serving over one billion queries per day
- 500 million registered users
- 175 million tweets per day
The World Travel Market (WTM) Industry Report and Global Trends Report
Nielsen: Global Consumers’ Trust in ‘Earned’ Advertising Grows in Importance
Lab42: Techie Traveler
Facebook Key Facts
TripAdvisor Fact Sheet
Not completely convinced that your business should have a blog? Remember this: Content is king. And with the abundance of both free and inexpensive blogging platforms floating around the web (WordPress being one of the most popular), there’s no reason why your business can’t set up a blog and start connecting with customers in a matter of minutes.
Using social networks for promoting your brand online is the new standard, but along with every new opportunity social media marketing presents us, comes new risks and questions.
Here are a few tips and considerations for integrating your website design with your social media marketing efforts:
Remember Old Facebook? When your wall was a pleasant mix of posts from both you, the business, and your fans? When valuable customer interactions were automatically front and centre on your Facebook page?
The worst piece of writing advice I ever received? Write like you talk.
If you’ve ever eavesdropped on a conversation, you know that our verbal culture is an editor’s worst nightmare. Saturated with rotten grammar, half-baked ideas and a disturbing amount of likes, ums and y’knows, human speech isn’t exactly made for readability.
As great as Twitter is, it’s not something you want to mess up. A misplaced tweet here, a rogue hashtag there, and your online reputation is ruined forever.
When the first version of Pinterest launched in early 2010, the creators lost sleep over whether anyone except for a handful of close family and guilt-ridden friends would ever use the site. Well, turns out their fears were unfounded. Not only have they attracted over 16 million users, they’ve also opened up a whole new world of social media marketing.
Timeline, Premium Ads, patent lawsuits, IPO delays, proof-of-ownership emails—it seems like Facebook has had all the fun lately. But while Mark Zuckerberg and friends are busy soaking up all the attention, Twitter has been flying under the radar, cooking up some sweet new advertising tactics for small businesses.
Not all brands are in love with the new Facebook Timeline, but a few early adopters have jumped on board and stepped up their creative game.
As these brands show, Timeline is about more than cool cover photos. It’s about defining your brand, showing off your personality and providing a continuous flow of interesting and engaging content.
Can Twitter in the classrooms help students get better grades? This infographic provides statistics and information for the use of Twitter as an educational tool.
When Pinterest first launched back in March 2010, it was dismissed as a feminine space for brides-to-be, aspiring kitchenistas and crafty, DIY types. While it’s true that Pinterest users are overwhelmingly female (97%, actually), the site is not as niche as it used to be.
Twitter Hashtag FAQ: Frequently (and not so Frequently) Asked Questions about the Internet’s Handiest Symbol
For new Twitter users, #hashtags are a major chore. Most of the time they don’t make sense, and then there are all the horror stories about hashtag jacking and being banned from the search results due to hashtag overkill.
So how do you make sense of all this hashtag madness? With our handy FAQ, or course.
It’s safe to share with friends of friends, right? I mean, you kinda know them. They’re the people you were introduced to at your girlfriend’s birthday party, or the ones you met in passing at the mall. It’s only 2 degrees of separation, so why not let them see all your photos?
Superbowl XLVI has a Social Media Command Center. Seriously. While you’re tossing back chicken wings and yelling at the television screen, a team of 50 will be monitoring the digital field from the comfort of their 2,300 square foot space in downtown Indianapolis.
At WordCamp Victoria a couple of weeks ago, I attended a session led by Beth Cougler Blom on the topic of Genuine Blogging. She touched on some pretty serious issues regarding the personal nature of blogging, including the fears, the challenges and the consequences that bloggers have to face every day.
Remember those light pollution—err… I mean those Earth at Night—maps that were so popular in the late 1990s? Well, it’s time to move on. Eric Fischer, Google programmer and digital map aficionado, has created something that will delight even the techiest of tech-lovers. Bye bye city lights, hello geotagged tweets and Flickr photos.
Unless your teacher was a tech addict with questionable morals, chances are you never used Facebook in kindergarten. You napped, you played house, you ate mucilage glue—but signing into your online profile? Not on the schedule.
There’s a glut of online music streaming services battling for your social timeline. Spotify, Grooveshark, Last.fm and Rdio all exist to annoy your Facebook and Twitter friends with the latest tune you listened to and what you think everyone else needs to hear. It’s like cranking tunes in your bedroom as a teenager, except the echo-chamber is the entire online world. What’s better than indiscriminately forcing your musical taste on your drinking buddies, high school aged cousins and accountant uncle?
After months of wondering if it would ever show its face in public, Facebook timeline has finally arrived! It’s not official—you have to go here to get it—but if you upgrade now you’ll have 7 days to test it out before it goes live on your profile.
Unless you’re Justin Bieber, it’s hard to get away with wearing a Kelly Kapowski t-shirt in public. Everyone loves her and feels really, really bad that her dad couldn’t afford to send her to prom, but for some reason it’s not okay to talk about it.
We’ve all had it happen: You befriend someone on Facebook and find out they know the girl who gave you the chicken pox in grade 3. It’s a little creepy, but a recent Facebook study shows our connections are becoming a little less coincidental and a lot more scientific.
If British police get their way, rioting hooligans will soon be banned from using social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Blackberry Messenger. Senior officers met with each individual company following last summer’s riots to learn how perps use the networks to stir up trouble, and to find a way to ban them for violating the networks’ terms and conditions.
We all hear about newsworthy tweets, like when @LeighFazzina crashed her bike in a forest with no cell reception and had to tweet a call for help. Or when @MarsPhoenix broke the news that ice was discovered on the Red Planet.
I believe good things come in 140-character packages. In a single tweet, you can argue your case, share good news or link to something awesome. You can tell the world about your new toothbrush, your new product or your new daughter. You can even spam your friends with inspirational quotes, which they love.
Recent studies prove it: increased engage,ent between educators and students cia email and social media has a positive effect on learning. Check out this infographic to see the schools that rule the web.
Facebook rumours. No, I’m not talking about Microsoft buying Facebook or Mark Zuckerberg’s pregnant girlfriend. I’m talking about those pesky, illogical rumours that spread faster than the truth. The ones that abuse caps lock, exclamation points and common sense.
If you hate the new Facebook changes right now, you’re really going to hate what Mark Zuckerberg announced this morning at the annual f8 conference in San Francisco. The Facebook that you know and love will be gone, and those irritating minor changes will be here to stay—plus many, many before. Basically, Facebook is getting an overhaul that coincides with a shift from user growth to user engagement. The last five years have been focused on signing people up and getting connections in place, and now that Facebook has half a billion users, the only thing left to do is get those users to share more.
AstroTurf. Once famous for being the Brady Bunch’s lawn of choice, the term now refers to the endless stream of opinion spam that litters websites around the globe.
You know what I’m talking about—those so-called “consumer reviews” that are stuffed with exclamation points, superlatives and robotic phrases like “Great rooms and service! Highly recommended!”
My fake-o-metre is also set off by:
Missouri’s newest law—the “Facebook Law”—has caused an uproar among teachers, students and others who believe it violates their freedom of speech and association.
Why? The law forbids teachers and students from befriending each other on Facebook. That’s not the law’s only concern—it also touches on things like background checks for anyone having contact with a student and reporting alleged sexual misconduct within 24 hours—but the social media aspect is naturally the only thing people are making a fuss about.
If you thought The Social Network was the ultimate blend of film and Facebook, think again. Toshiba and Intel have paired with Hollywood A-listers to create a blockbuster-style thriller that you, the consumer, can control.
Social Media Day 2011 is tomorrow! Now in its second year, this global event celebrates our connected world and gives people a chance to socialize with their online communities offline.
With content from our interactive media division, northStudio360, we were recently the proud winners of Social Media Campaign of the Year, presented by Social Media Camp. The award, dubbed a “Westie,” was judged on creativity, sociability and results. Here’s how it went down:
Two days, 8 workshops, 30 sessions and a deliciously embarrassing amount of Wannawafels later, the 2nd annual Social Media Camp has come to a close. This year saw over 650 participants, almost 200 more than last year.
Deadmau5, the Canadian-born electronica musician, needs a new rodent head. It’s a unusually big request—he’s famous for wearing over-sized mouse heads on stage during performances—so he’s turned to Talenthouse.com to design a one-of-a-kind mau5head that will be featured on deadmau5’s official website and worn during his “Unhooked” shows.
Toyota and Salesforce have joined forces to create Toyota Friend, a private social network for Toyota owners. Its name makes it sound like a lame role-playing game where owners give their cars cutesy names and elaborate personalities and spam each other’s walls with requests for virtual spark plugs, but it’s nothing like that.
Scavenger hunts are always awesome, but Starbucks just upped the awesomeness by including QR codes—and even better—Lady Gaga. Without using raw-meat bikinis or elaborate egg vessels, Starbucks found a clever way to connect their stores, their digital networks and their customers.
Search engine optimization (SEO) should be a main component of any industry’s marketing plan, but for the travel industry it’s absolutely essential. According to a Travelport report, online search engines continue to dominate the travel industry with two out of three leisure travellers (66%) and 59% of business travellers using them to research travel.
The internet has revolutionized the tourism and accommodation industry by giving travelers access to greater choices, better deals, more flexible plans and a wealth of media designed to immerse them in the destination before they even get there.
This quick, simple and convenient travel planning is a big step forward for the industry, but it has also transformed travel into one of the most highly competitive niches, requiring specialized, industry-specific optimization strategies. To survive, businesses need to gain an understanding of what consumers are searching for and learn how they can leverage internet search technology to maximize not only traffic to their site, but also to the destination itself.
But when it comes to SEO, it’s not enough to rely on keyword-rich text. On-page content is important, but there are many back-end factors to consider, including title tags, meta tags, image optimization, internal link structure, multilingualism and foreign search terms. And as of recently, social media can also affect your Google ranking.
In addition, Google rolled out a new feature last September that dramatically affects search results. Businesses can now claim Google Place Pages that allow them to verify and supplement their business information, including products, photos, videos, hours of operation and more. These Place Pages not only take up a major chunk of the first page, but they also pull in reviews—both good and bad—from multiple sources. Google designed Place Pages to help customers make informed decisions where to go, but now it’s more important than ever before for businesses to maximize their online presence.
Here are the stats:
- 95% of natural clicks come from page one of Google, Yahoo and Bing
- 3% of clicks came from page two, and 2% came from page three
- One out of five Google searches are related to location
- The number one spot on Google search results gets double the traffic as the number two spot, and the second through fifth spots combined
- 41% of searches unsuccessful after the first page choose to refine their keyword search phrase or their chosen search engine.
- 80% of completely unsuccessful searches are followed with keyword refinement
It’s not surprising that hear that New York Rangers forward Sean Avery is at the centre of yet another controversy.
The 31-year-old former Vogue intern teamed up with the Human Rights Campaign and released a 30-second video for “New Yorkers for Marriage Equality” over the weekend, becoming the first professional athlete in New York to publicly support marriage equality. And according to the HRC, the Rangers, as an organization, are now rallying behind Avery in support of the campaign.
While some countries are left to deal with fraudulent elections, Canada is busy cleaning up the aftermath of the #tweettheresults fiasco.
Twitter is famous for broadcasting news before traditional media outlets pick it up (and for prematurely killing celebrities), but the recent election raised some interesting issues about a person’s right to tweet.
Vending machines have always been social. People crowd around and share their thoughts on the best way to steal drinks, how far you can shake the machine before it falls over and whether or not the Coca-Cola script is really an obscene image.
Pepsi recently created a vending machine that’s truly social, in the 21st century sense. It’s still a prototype, but their “Social Vending System” allows users to gift beverages around the country.
Here’s how it works:
Unruly tweets got you down? Fear not—Canadian insurance brokers may soon offer coverage for financial losses and reputation damage caused by mis-tweets or other inappropriate social media posts.
When it comes to social media, it’s easy to get lost in the number crunch. Facebook has over 500 million users, Twitter has over 175 million. You have 357 Facebook friends, 3246 Twitter followers and your blog has been read 467 times.
You have 23 mutual friends with someone on Facebook, yet you have no idea who that person is.
April 12th is a big day in the space world. And this year, it’s even more special—it’s the 30th anniversary of NASA’s first space shuttle launch and the 50th anniversary of the first human spaceflight, taken by Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin.
Here’s a scary Facebook stat: every day, people add more than 100 million tags to photos on Facebook.
Here’s another scary Facebook stat: people love tagging more than they love being tagged. This particular fact has no scientific basis, but you and I both know it’s true.
First tweets are stressful.
Everyone loves a good social media experiment—especially when it involves free stuff.
Travelati, an upcoming travel magazine, is giving away tons of freebies for the best travel tips and unique stories. They’re crowdsourcing all of their content, so travelers can receive American Airlines Advantage miles, airline gift cards and lounge access in exchange for the best photography, video, writing and spoken word. If you’re not a writerly type but still want a shot at magazine fame, you can phone in your story.
I rarely sign up for newsletters. Why? They’re lame. I’ll read pretty much anything I can get my eyes on, from literary classics to IKEA instructions to contact lens solution ingredient lists, but never newsletters. It’s a lot easier to click “delete” than it is to scroll though a mess of dull, regurgitated info.
A few days ago, Disney purchased Togetherville, which is essentially Facebook for kids.
Travelers naturally gravitate toward referrals and recommendations. They’re social creatures who trust other travelers more than traditional marketing, and they’re always on the lookout for atypical tourist activities. Social media is a great way to get the most current insider info, but what if you could skip the planning and get a personalized itinerary from a trusted local? It’s kind of like Rent a Friend, only less creepy.
There’s a retweet swirling around Twitter that says the Grammys lost 17 billion+ views after Esperaza Spalding won over the Biebs. Hmm.
With a world population of about 6,775,235,741, that would mean each person would have to love Bieber with 250% of their heart. And even with herds of dedicated Bieberites running wild on this planet, I’m pretty sure that’s impossible.
Foursquare has over 6 million users and over 381 million check-ins, but very few DMO’s are using the using the geo-location service to boost tourism. Explore Chicago was the first to really get involved with Foursquare, and since then, only a handful of DMO’s have joined.
I’ve gotten used to the blasting over at the Uptown construction site, so when I felt a big rumble at 8:30 this morning, I completely ignored it. But while I quietly ate my oatmeal, Twitter lit up with earthquake-fueled chatter.
I have a confession: Superbowl XLV is 3 days away and I don’t know which teams are playing. I didn’t know last year either, but I attempted to hide my indifference by bringing a hideous football cake to the party. Unfortunately, it was so over-iced and under-baked that only one person tried it. So instead of passing myself off as a quiet fan with amazing baking skills, I became “the girl who brought the cake.
And I still never figured out who was playing.
Ideally, the tourism industry is win-win situation. While travelers escape their normal routines to frolic and explore, they enhance the quality of life for the community by creating employment, generating tax dollars and attracting facilities and events that appeal to both visitors and locals.
Even though Egypt is in the midst of an Internet and SMS blackout, the rest of the world is glued to the web, watching. Protesters and journalists have found ways around these roadblocks and are using social media to inform and organize.
Following #jan25 or #egypt on Twitter produces an amazing amount of results. By the time you read the first few, you’re already five hundred tweets behind. Many protesters are posting via proxy server, and some journalists are even using landlines to phone tweets back to their headquarters.
Tourism Saskatchewan has always been on the forefront of awesomeness, with innovative live chat, video, and promotions, but they outdid themselves with the release of their mobile website.
Over the past year, a few high-profile incidents thrust airlines into the spotlight. Scandalous highlights include Kevin Smith being kicked of a Southwest Airlines flight for being “too fat”, Air Canada breaking a young boy’s wheelchair and a Twitter hoax about JetBlue and American Airlines flying doctors to Haiti for free.