6 Building Blocks For Your Social Media Strategy

Are you confused on the difference of a social media tool vs strategy?

One of the most common questions I receive from small business owners is, “What social network should I focus on for my business?” While that is an important question, the network is only a tool to execute the strategy. The SlideShare presentation below will help you build a strong foundation for your strategy in addition to show you how to find the best networks to concentrate on based on your audiences behavior.

While there is no magic wand or cookie-cutter approach to send droves of customers to your virtual door overnight, you will see a return on your investment by regularly engaging with your communities. To save time and simplify your routine, choose one of the online management tools such as HootSuite or Buffer to help you. Read more about this at My Social Media BFFs.

Do you know the Who, What, Where and Why? of your social media strategy?

Take the time to answer the six questions in this presentation questions, and then choose the tools that will help achieve your defined objectives. By investing a small amount of time analyzing your unique market now, you will begin to build your community and realize your goals. But… if you fail to plan, you can plan to fail.

How is your small business using social media successfully? What are your favorite tools to execute your strategy? Please share any ideas that have worked for your company in the comment section below.

Author: Therese Matthys

Therese Matthys

@ThereseMatthys – Certified Social Media Strategist helping businesses navigate through the digital world by providing strategies and instructions to reach their business objectives.

         

Build A Strong Foundation For Your Strategy

Which Social Media Network Is Right For Your Small Business?

Which social media channels should you concentrate your efforts on?

So many networks, so little time. If you own a small business, your already stretched for time and money, so the last thing you need is to waste either. As you can see on the infographic below from Business2Community, each social media channel can offer a variety of benefits for your company.  Do a little research on your target market to determine where they are hanging out and focus your marketing efforts and spend there.  You can begin your research with this article, Find Your Target Market’s Social Demographic.

Once you have determined the best social media channels to work with, begin your strategy with:

  • Make a commitment to spend 30 minutes per day on your channel(s).
  • Update you status or make a post daily.
  • Use a management tool such as Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule future posts.

Finally, be consistent with your message and postings. This is will help you develop an image as a thought leader and expert in your field. Consistent updating of your social channels and blog site will also boost your SEO.

How are you budgeting your time to allow for social media marketing of your small biz?

Share which social media channel(s) has your small business found most useful for brand awareness and engagement?

Author: Therese Matthys

Therese Matthys

@ThereseMatthys - Certified Social Media Strategist helping businesses navigate through the digital world by providing strategies and instructions to reach their business objectives.

         

Make the right decision for your marketing spend

Make the right decision for your marketing spend

Is Instagram Becoming Man’s Best Friend on Social Media?

Why are men flocking to Instagram?

Is there a gender divide on visual social media networks?

Instagram's Gender Divide

Male vs. Female on Instagram

Yes, and if you’re like me, you’ll find the Nitrogram infographic below interesting. New stats are showing men trending as stronger Instagram users than women with a clear gender distinction on the brands they prefer to follow. For marketers, this valuable information helps determine where marketing spend should be allocated for greater reach with their gender demographic.

Which top brands are men following most?

Men love the NFL on Instagram

Men love the NFL on Instagram

The NFL occupies countless hours of television viewing time in our house, so it comes as no surprise that NFL related accounts are most likely to be followed by men.

As we inch closer to the Super Bowl, extend your following with these popular NFL Instagram accounts:

20 Exciting NFL Players on Instagram

Top 10 Most Stylish NFL Players on Instagram

25 Top Offensive NFL Players on Instagram

If you grow weary of all the fantastic pictures these athletes have to offer, give the other top two Instagram accounts followed by men a gander to perk you back up, Red Bull and Monster:

Red Bull

Monster Energy

Most Popular Beverage Brands On Instagram

Scroll down to learn more facts on the male vs. female use of this popular social media channel.

Do these stats align with your male social media network? Give us your feedback in the comments section below.

Author: Therese Matthys

Therese Matthys

@ThereseMatthys - Certified Social Media Strategist helping businesses navigate through the digital world by providing strategies and instructions to reach their business objectives.

         

Gender on Instagram's Social Media Network

Gender on Instagram’s Social Media Network

How To Start The New Year With A Strong Social Media Strategy

Are you unsure how to begin marketing your business on social media networks? 

Start The New Year With A Strong Social Media Strategy

Start The New Year With A Strong Social Media Strategy

Do you need help keeping your social media strategy goals?

After taking a couple months off from blogging due to extended family illnesses, it’s great to be back! This time off has allowed me to renew my focus and energy toward my business and I’m super excited to see what 2014 will bring!

While the final days of winter break pass away, now is the time to take a closer look at your social media strategy and ask yourself some questions:

  • What networks are you on?
  • Which networks are creating the strongest relationships?
  • Should you join new networks?
  • Which content does your audience most enjoy?

And the list goes on.

Your social media plan will be as unique as your business.

The combination of networks to choose from, content to create and analytics to use can leave you feeling overwhelmed. While there is no cookie cutter approach to developing a social media strategy, there are many resources that can help. For example, check out the comprehensive Social Media Planning Guide Worksheet featured on www.LisaPeyton.com/store/. Lisa has eliminated the confusion with this well organized, easy to use and customizable Excel spreadsheet.

As you take the time to thoroughly go through the planning process for your brand’s 2014 social media strategy, remember a few key concepts:

  • First, the most important step is to begin creating great content and sharing it with your communities.
  • Second,  periodically analyze which content and channels are most engaging for your target market.
  • And last, but certainly not least, as with any other marketing approach, remember it takes time to build your relationships, so stick with the plan and tweak as necessary.

Wishing all of you a very happy, prosperous and social new year!

2014 Social Media Marketing

Share your ideas for developing social media strategies in the comments section below, we’d love to hear from you!

Author: Therese Matthys

Therese Matthys

@ThereseMatthys - Certified Social Media Strategist helping businesses navigate through the digital world by providing strategies and instructions to reach their business objectives.

         

Can Social Media Marketers Balance Work and Life?

Do you log on to your social media channels on your days off from work?

Recently I became a full-fledged member of the “Sandwich Generation” when my father-in-law moved in with our family. I won’t give you all the details of this sad story, but he is in the advanced stages of Alzheimers and the beginning stage of Parkinson’s. Needless to say, he requires a significant amount of daily care. While we were very excited to help take part in his care, partnered by my many siblings-in-law, I found it very difficult to fit in my social media work. As a result, I decided to take some time off from my social media channels, blogging and reading every email that landed in my inbox.

Have you ever worried that you might go through withdrawal symptoms from your social accounts if you take a break?

I was afraid of missing all the great information that my community shares daily. I was afraid to miss the conversations that occur with my friends, fans and followers. I was afraid that I would regret not blogging for a few weeks until we got into the groove of senior care giving. And what if I missed one of my friend’s birthdays? Thankfully I can report that none of the above came to fruition, I am in the groove and able to compose a blog post this week.

It can be somewhat liberating to have more control over your social media behavior.

It became clear that quantity and quality of social behavior was more important than attempting to hit a specific benchmark each day. My lack of time only allowed me to click on posts or blogs with very succinct, catchy titles which grabbed my attention immediately. This is a skill I will be working very hard on moving forward with my own posts. It also taught me the valuable lesson of sharing only quality information that adds value to my community. People today are busy; there is no time to waste with useless information.

Many Americans love the ability to stay connected on-the-go.

Most of us no longer experience boredom because we are constantly plugged in to one device or another. The following infographic by TeamViewer proves this point with a layout of how Americans expect to stay plugged into their jobs while taking time off. While I have clearly not been on a vacation, I did take time off and found myself unable to completely shut off my email or social channels. I continue to check and answer work related emails and post to my social networks, but on a smaller scale.

How do you stay connected during off hours? What is your favorite on-the-go device?

Share your thoughts in the comments section below, we’d love to hear from you!

Author: Therese Matthys

Therese Matthys

@ThereseMatthys - Certified Social Media Strategist helping businesses navigate through the digital world by providing strategies and instructions to reach their business objectives.

What is your social media behavior on your days off?

What is your social media behavior on your days off?

Shouldn’t Online Social Media Etiquette Be As Natural As Offline?

Do you offer common courtesies to your social media friends?

Do you show appreciation to your social media community?

Do you offer common courtesies to your social media friends?

I ran across this infographic by Kerneel Corporation on Pinterest this morning. At first glance I thought this infographic was too simplistic to be effective. Yet, I felt compelled to click on it just to make sure I was showing my community the love it rightfully deserved.

Are you showing proper online etiquette on your social media community?

Are you showing proper online etiquette on your social media community?

My key take away from the simple and efficient design of this infographic is that common courtesies should be just as natural and as easily executed online as they would be in offline situations.

For example, if a colleague complimented your work while at a business meeting, you would naturally reply with a thank you. The same should be true online. When a social media buddy gives you a shout out by retweeting or sharing material that you’ve posted, you should naturally reply with a thank you. While there are many ways to say thank you, the goal is to keep it real and authentic as in the examples below.

How are you showing appreciation to your social media community?

Author: Therese Matthys

Therese Matthys

@ThereseMatthys - Certified Social Media Strategist helping businesses navigate through the digital world by providing strategies and instructions to reach their business objectives.

How To Use Social Media To Support Breast Cancer Awareness

As I’m sure you know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This subject is close to the hearts of my family as my mother-in-law passed away from this disease, my oldest sister was diagnosed with Stage IV Breast Cancer last year (her cancer is now “dormant”.), and two cousins this year.

What does breast cancer have to do with social media?

If your social channels are anything like mine, you’ve seen many images and posts supporting the survivors and scientists working on a cure such as this infographic from www.knowcancer.com.

Savvy Instagram users have create collages with their favorite images. Check out this one from toysoulga featuring three images to showcase support of breast cancer survivors during “Pink October”, the month to get involved. I stumbled across this collage on my Facebook page and hit the share button. Within two minutes, two of my Facebook friends “liked” it.

An Instagram Breast Cancer Awareness Collage

An Instagram Breast Cancer Awareness Collage

Many of my male friends on Facebook are showing their support this month as well. Though this disease primarily hits women, it has also been known to effect men too. One of my cousins is a huge NFL fan, and loves the Seattle Seahawks. Scott’s wife and sister-in-law were both diagnosed earlier this year with breast cancer, and this month Scott has proudly changed is profile picture to:

Seattle Seahawks and NFL support breast cancer month

Seattle Seahawks and NFL support breast cancer month

And his cover photo to:

Does your NFL team support breast cancer?

Does your NFL team support breast cancer?

And remember the secret “girl’s only” Facebook game that left men all over the globe the wondering why women were updating their status with a color? These games are a fun way to keep the importance of this illness in the forefront of the public’s eye.

It’s no secret that Pinterest users are 80% female and that this channel would be a great channel to encourage awareness and education of breast cancer. One account, Blog Friends Great Ideas, pinned Breast Cancer Awareness Printables created by Natalie at http://oneshetwoshe.com.

Another Pinterest page was created by Medline, an industry leader in medical supplies, “to raise funds and awareness for breast cancer research.” This company Pinterest page is loaded with boards that not only support survivors, inspire patients and educate the mass, but also includes fun treats, drinks and contests! Check out Medline’s “Pink Glove Dance” Pinterest page to learn more.

People often connect with celebrities who are brave enough to go public with their health issues.  Giuliana Rancic is one recent celebrity that has been very open with her condition and treatment, and now speaks publically to help other woman who are going through breast cancer. A simple search on YouTube.com will provide several results to videos that tell Giuliana’s story; her struggles, her surgery, and her survival.

Giuliana Rancic

Giuliana Rancic is one recent celebrity that has been very open with her condition and treatment

Stay informed all year long by following organizations on Twitter such as the National Breast Cancer Foundation @NBCF, or Susan G Komen @SusanGKomen and many others.

To answer my original question, “What does breast cancer have to do with social media?” My answer would be, “a lot!” Just look at all the informational, educational and inspirational content on these channels for patients, survivors and their loved ones. Personally, with three family members who are breast cancer survivors, and one who was a victim, I feel a great responsibility to support this cause, even in little ways. It doesn’t take much time or effort to share an Instagram collage, participate in a Facebook game or repin an inspirational quote. But the feeling of support that it offers will be lasting.

In a couple of weeks our daughter will be helping to host their high school team’s annual “Pink Out Swim Meet.” She has invited our three family members already inflicted with breast cancer to honor them publically with a flower and let them know how proud she is of them for staying tough through such a trying time. She will also keep her grandmother who passed close to her heart. She’s not raising a $1 million dollars for research, but her small efforts to show she cares will be much appreciated by her auntie and cousins just the same. I’ll be sure to post pictures on Instagram and Facebook to share with everyone.

Now it’s your turn – how can you tie a pink ribbon around your social media channels in support of breast cancer awareness?

Author: Therese Matthys@ThereseMatthys - Certified Social Media Strategist helping businesses navigate through the digital world by providing strategies and instructions to reach their business objectives.