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4 Social Media Activities You Should Be Doing in 2020

4 Social Media Tips for Getting Your Blog Working in 2020

As of January 2020, Statistica reports that Facebook remains the most popular social media site in the world, and was the first social channel to reach 1 billion accounts.

And while some other applications like WhatsApp and TikTok have sprung into popularity in the past few years, it’s no surprise that three key platforms continue to dominate.

Here are the number of monthly active users for key social sites as of January 2020 (via Statistica):

  • Facebook: 2.45 billion
  • Instagram: 1 billion
  • YouTube: 2 billion

This is good news for your business!

Read on for a few ideas of how to use these sites to build and grow your business in 2020!

1. Facebook Ads

Facebook ads are still one of the most effective ways of marketing your business as of 2020
They allow you to target your audience based on what they’re searching for.

So for instance, if someone recently looked up “best skincare products” and you’ve targeted your ad accordingly, they should see your ad on their Facebook feed.

According to Hootsuite, about 87% of marketers in the US will use the platform to market their products and services in 2020.

In light of the fact that personalized marketing is becoming increasingly necessary, they have also recently introduced a way to make your Facebook Ads more personalized.

For more social media marketing ideas, here are 21 clever ways to attract more readers and boost blog traffic this year.

2. Use Video as Part of Your Social Media Marketing Strategy

Video is really the king of content these days, and for good reason: it’s personal, easy to use, and good for SEO.

Data from Cisco suggests that by 2021, 80% of traffic will consist of video, and Hootsuite claims that twice as many people watched product videos in 2018 than 2017.

Have you made video part of your content strategy yet? Learn How to Leverage Video Content on Your Blog for SEO. 

3. Instagram Stories

Instagram stories are 24-hour snippets of live video which you can use in a variety of ways to help build brand awareness and trust.

They are simple to view and use: all you need to do is log into Instagram, and find the circles at the top of the screen.

Click on “your story,” (the top left “circle”) and get creative!

Here are some examples of good ways to use Instagram Stories:

  • Share a new blog
  • Promote a new product
  • Introduce a staff member
  • Talk about something you learned today

This is one social media marketing tool where the possibilities are truly endless, and it’s one of the best ways to get “up close and personal” with your customers!

(P.S. You can use Stories on Facebook, too!)

4. Use Twitter Strategically

If you’re still wondering what Twitter does and how to use it, here are a few things to try which can help you build a following and generate brand awareness.

Microblogging

Microblogging is exactly what it sounds like: creating short, written posts which can be combined with various forms of media.

Twitter is really the key platform for microblogging, but it’s not a bad idea to generate a bunch of short, punchy posts in advance and have them at-the-ready so that you can stay in the conversation on any social media channel.

Engaging with Influencers

Following your influencers on Twitter might be fun, but actually engaging with them is what counts.

Take this Jimmy Fallon Tweet, for instance: A quick little response using this hashtag could get you on the show!

The key here is to find influencers who are relevant to your niche or industry, then connect with them by following them and liking, commenting on, and sharing their posts.

Cross Promoting & Media Mentions

When using Twitter, be sure to use the @ sign to mention other media outlets — for instance, if you have a guest post or interview.

This type of cross-promotion can work wonders for your authority and help attract more relevant followers.

If you want help building an exceptional library of content to base your social media marketing on, we can help!

Want to make your blog stand out? Email us to set up a quick call so we can learn more.

Want to be able to write like a pro? Download our Ultimate Writing Template.

Enjoy this article? Here are 3 more articles to help you get your blog working for you:

7 Ways to Make Your Blog Stand Out from the Crowd by Being Different
11 Blogging Statistics That Might Surprise You
How to start a blog post – 5 examples that really work!

This article was originally published on March 7, 2017, and has since been updated.

A Social Media Survival Guide for Small Business

A social media guide for small business

“I can only conclude that people who don’t use social media are, at best, considered to be mavericks or, at worst, some kind of psychopath.” Steve Blakeman

“I’m not a very social media person” my new client admitted to me. “I mean, I know I should be…I’m just not.”

I get it.

If you were born before 1980 you are less likely to be a ‘social media person’.

So, there you are: a business person who needs social media to reach your tribe – even attract a bigger tribe. The problem is the thought of checking Instagram every morning or uploading a video to Facebook gives you a cold sweat.

You could go cold turkey, buy a yurt and live in the desert (been done), or…
you could find a happy compromise and use social media on your terms.

There is a solution and it starts by understanding that you don’t need to reach the world.

 

If you were born before 1980 you are less likely to be a ‘social media person’.

 

Social Media Guide for Small Business: You don’t need to reach the world.

“There is also the joy of learning new ways of marketing, with that there is often the accompanying pain of mistakes that comes along for the ride.” Jeff Bullas

Has this happened to you?

You see a tweet that had 425 retweets or your competitor has 10,000 followers on Facebook. “Damn,” you think “I really need to spend more time tweeting. Or posting. Or pasting. Or someting!”

Well, whoop-di-doo (tech speak for ‘who cares?’) they got a bunch of monkeys to jump!

Maybe that’s not your goal?

Unless you’re promoting your new punk band or selling a new gaming app, volume is not your goal. Click To Tweet

Your goal should be to build loyal followers

The kind of loyal followers who follow you all the way back to your website. The kind of followers who share your content and buy your stuff.

You don’t need to reach the world … you need to reach your tribe.

Start by getting a clear notion of who you are speaking to – who is your ideal audience, or avatar:

— what age are they?
— gender?
— type of work or career?
— what problems do they seek solutions for?
— what style of writing do they enjoy: high-brow philosophy or Gary Larson cartoons?
— how do they like to engage: sharing, quizzes, comments?

Evernote (read my post about how I use this fantastic, free tool) does a great job of writing to people who love lists and getting organized.

Good is better than more.

“I am 100% convinced that you can live without using or be on social media.” Israel Garcia

There’s lots of “expert” advice online on how to schedule loads and loads of updates (I wrote about the problem with scheduling software). As if volume is the ultimate goal.

There’s lots of “expert” advice online on how to schedule loads and loads of updates. As if volume is the ultimate goal. Click To Tweet

Let me ask you a question…

If you went to a restaurant, would you rather have a huge bowl of mediocre food or a small portion of delicious food prepared by a talented chef? I’d choose good over more every time.

Good can simply mean a few extra minutes editing, choosing an original image, or making a reference to a trending topic.

A good rule with social media is people share what makes them look smart. Putting a clever twist on what they think they already know will have more legs than one more post about 5 ways to be a better leader.

Comparing two posts on similar topics, my post “5 steps to writing an awesome blog post in less than 60 minutes”  got a much better reaction than the earlier post “5 blog posts that will keep your reader coming back.” Taking a stand – even a bold claim – is an invitation for readers to share to their followers. They feel smart sharing the post they just enjoyed and you get the benefit of new readers.

A good rule with social media is people share what makes them look smart. Click To Tweet

Oreo does a great job of creating smart, often sarcastic, comedy in their Tweets.

Work in batches

“The best way to engage honestly with the marketplace via Twitter is to never use the words ‘engage,’ ‘honestly,’ or ‘marketplace.’”Jeffrey Zeldman, Founder, A List Apart magazine

One of the best ways to be more effective is to work in batches. That could be 15 minutes of solid email work, followed by no email for an hour, instead of constantly checking your email all morning.

You can also batch your social media.

Instead of interrupting your day with updates and responding to followers, you can do it once a day. You might not go viral, but you will have time for other work without distraction.

Fortunately, there are scheduling tools like Buffer and CoSchedule that let you load up a calendar full of updates. The problem with any schedule tools (this will intentionally sound self-serving) is that most people – especially super busy business owners – don’t have time to learn how to use the scheduling tool, let alone constantly fill it.

I know, because before I created BlogWorks, that’s what I tried to do.

I’ll give you two weeks before you quit.

Good news! At BlogWorks we can do it all for you. No scheduling tools, searching for articles, fussing with pictures, or shortening links. One account, one solution, social media is done. Learn how to get started with BlogWorks.

Good news! At BlogWorks we can do it all for you.

Outsource $10/hour jobs

“If you love life, don’t waste time for time is what life is made up of.” Bruce Lee

One of the most powerful lessons I received as an entrepreneur was about the value of my time.

Here’s a simple exercise that was a big eye opener for me and might be for you as well.

Start by making three columns on a piece of paper (a flip chart is even better) and title them: $10, $50, $[what you charge clients per hour]. These are the values of the time for each task, starting with up to $10/hour, and then up to $50/hour and finally, up to your current value when working for clients.

Now, fill in all the tasks, jobs, routines, roles you fill in a typical week, putting each one in the column that matches the value of the job in dollars.

A common mistake entrepreneurs make is doing $10/hour jobs instead of delegating them to others.

Do you see a problem?

Most business owners discover there’s lots of $10 jobs they are still doing, even though they charge 10X that, or more, to their customers. This is what Michael Gerber meant when he said we are “…spending too much time working in our business instead of working on our business.”

The solution begins by first documenting the process routine for all your $10/hour jobs. Simply make a list of each step using a Google Doc (we use Google Doc’s because they’re easy to share within our team).

These are called SOP’s (Standard Operating Procedures) and they can change your life.

Next, go on UpWork and hire a freelancer to do that job. Don’t worry about creating full-time employment or giving them five jobs to make it worth their time — just start with one reoccurring job that needs to get done.

A good job to start with is publishing your blog.

You might be surprised to learn how many steps go into publishing a blog. There are at least a dozen steps, starting with logging into WordPress, entering the headline, choosing tags, that have to be done the same way every time to get your blog looking good.

The solution is to start documenting the routines for all your $10/hour jobs.
Pro tip: once you post your job in Upwork, use the filters to choose the criteria for the freelancer you are looking for.

Even if you’re not into social media, you don’t have to abandon it altogether.

The strategies in this social media guide for small business can keep you in the game with minimal effort and time.

Speaking of which, now you have more time for what you are into, like watching reruns of All in the family with a nice mug of Ovaltine.

Why social media scheduling tools might be a bad idea

social media scheduling tools bad idea

Let’s face it, you don’t have enough time to do everything you want or need to do.

You don’t have enough time for all the clever marketing ideas you heard on the latest podcast. You don’t have time to keep your website perfectly updated. And you don’t have time for social media.

So you turn to social media scheduling tools.

You quickly discover there are lots of options: Buffer, HootSuite, coschedule, edgar, smarterqueue … lots of them. And they all make big, bold promises that sound like instant solutions:

“…easy to manage your business’s social media accounts.”

“Social media scheduling without stress.”

“Social media management made easy.”

“Save over 5 hours every week.”

At the risk of sounding biased, one-sided, self-serving and just a little bit defensive, here’s why scheduling software might not be such a great idea after all.

At the risk of sounding biased, one-sided, self-serving and just a little bit defensive, here’s why social media scheduling tools might not be such a great idea after all. Click To Tweet

First, let’s look at what social media was designed for.

The real reason we use social media

Social media is first about being social — sharing personal updates, helpful news, valuable resources and connecting.

Sure anyone in business is happy to receive business from Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and we can advertise there as well. But, we go to social media first for the social.

“Creating content online that educates, adds value to people’s lives and inspires” wrote online marketing expert Jeff Bullas, “is something worth aspiring to.”

When you post the same content over and over you send the wrong message. It’s like the same TV commercial interrupting your favourite sitcom … again and again. Pretty soon, you just tune out.

One day a trusted friend tells you about some scheduling tool that has saved their bacon (isn’t it fascinating how we love to brag about some solution, even if we’re not completely convinced it works?). And after clicking on their suggestion, plus a bunch of other sites – all promising that the burden of keeping up with your social media will soon evaporate – you enter your credit card and create a password.

Um, did they happen to mention the real work is about to begin?

scheduling social media is hard work, so you turn to tools...

Let’s take a minute and look at the real cost of schedule software.

The real cost of social media scheduling tools

Most advice about online marketing and social media is given by people whose job is to (surprise!) do online marketing and social media. They live and breath this stuff. And their advice about using social media scheduling tools should come packaged with the warning, to borrow from TV shopping channels: “results may vary.”

Let’s break down the real cost of scheduling tools for someone who is not an online, social media expert. I think you’ll quickly see that the cost of the software subscription is only a small part of the real cost:

  • The typical cost of a software subscription: $10 – $99/month
  • Time to learn the software (assuming you value your time at $100/hour): 2 – 10 hours @ $100/hour = $200 – $1,000 sunk cost.
  • Time to keep software actively loaded every day: 2-4 hours/week @ $100/hour = $800 – $1,600/month.

So, using these very rough numbers, if you were completely dedicated and undistracted, you could be up to speed at a sunk cost of  $200 – $1,000 and investing $810 – $1,699/month (time + subscription fee) to update and maintain your schedule.

Here’s the rub.

I don’t know any business owner who is 1) dedicated enough to commit 8 hours a month to anything that doesn’t produce an immediate ROI to their business or 2) organized enough to stick to a routine this demanding for more than, oh, I don’t know, a week?

That’s why (this is when we start to sound a bit biased) we created BlogWorks.

Why we created BlogWorks

We are small business owners – just like you. And we know you don’t sit around thinking “Gee, I sure wish I had some software I could while away a couple of hours loading some stuff into.”

Not likely.

So we created a solution that does what you should be doing to promote your blog, and we use real people to do it.

BlogWorks does what you should be doing to promote your blog, and we use real people to do it. Click To Tweet

At BlogWorks we turn your blog posts into social media updates that are original, clever, relevant and just happen to be written by a thinking human (all of our team are professional writers living in Canada.) We also research and include articles from top performing sites like inc.com, Harvard Business Review, entrepreneur.com, Forbes.com, brenebrown.com, huffingtonpost.com.

Sure, we also do other nifty things, like: update hashtags, promote top performing blog posts, double check for grammar and spelling and monthly reporting.

It’s like having a trained, dedicated marketing assistant, but without the hassle of recruiting, hiring and training and without the high price.

A day late and a dollar short

Let’s face it, no solution is perfect—in an ideal world we’d all be sipping drinks with umbrellas and working Tim Ferriss’s 4 hour work week. But we don’t.

Time is scarce and we need to make smart decisions to keep our business growing and keep our calendar clear (of course, I’m assuming you’re not 18 and living in your parent’s basement).

Sure, you can sign up for any one of a dozen scheduling tools and feel great. For a few minutes.

The problem comes when you (or Mary at the front desk) try to keep up with the loading, adjusting, tweaking, relearning and the messing around it takes to make your new, fancy social media scheduling tools actually work.

When you’re ready to offload all of that and get back to what you do best, give us a shout.

Want more info on How to Get The Social Media Monkey Off Your Back?

How To get the Social Media Monkey off your Back E-book

 

 

Click here for our white paper.

 

Five Simple Steps to Double Your Business with LinkedIn

double your business with linkedin

LinkedIn may not be up there with the “cool” kids like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, but if you know how to take advantage of it, LinkedIn can provide you with a lot more leads and new clients that all other social networks combined.

Despite what some people still think, LinkedIn is not simply a place to find a job or for recruiters to find talent. Over 80% of all B2B leads generated by social media come from LinkedIn.

By following some simple steps, you can put your lead generation in the fast lane, expand your reach, elevate your authority and most importantly, grow your sales. LinkedIn provides fantastic targeting abilities, where you can hone in on precisely the type of customer you want.

But you need to understand what is required to attract today’s buyer.

It requires a shift in the sales dialogue from “What can I sell you?” to “How can I help you?”

Today, your personal brand is more important than it’s ever been as people are looking to find out more about an individual before they do business with them.

Seven seconds is all you have to wow a potential client. Your social selling success is dependent on how your LinkedIn profile represents your personal brand.

With all of these challenges, there is still tremendous opportunity. You now have tools available to you to connect directly with your ideal prospects, with the click of a button.

And while everyone has been talking about social media for years, few talk about the power of LinkedIn. I believe many businesses ignore LinkedIn for two primary reasons:

  1. It isn’t sexy.
  2. It isn’t fun or exciting.

While LinkedIn may not be exciting, getting new clients and having a successful business certainly is!

The LINK Method™ – Double your business with LinkedIn

There are five crucial steps that will turn LinkedIn into a highly predictable lead generator for you. I call this The LINK Method™.

In the infographic below I will share with you the five-step process, what you need to have in your profile to attract your ideal clients, trigger events that allow you to build relationships with your prospects on LinkedIn, how to leverage existing relationships, and much more.

Are you interested in discovering how to turn LinkedIn into a lead generation machine? Take a look at the infographic below:

The LINK Method™

 

I believe that when you stop collecting connections and start building relationships, you increase trust, credibility and attract more clients. This is vital because effective social selling is all about building relationships and trust.

The beauty of LinkedIn is that it is a platform that was designed to help you find, connect and then build a relationship and trust with the exact group of people that comprise your target audience.

Yet people continue to make two very serious mistakes with LinkedIn and social selling.

Mistake #1:
They rush to a sale right after connecting with a potential prospect.

Mistake #2:
They never move the conversation offline, or don’t know how to, as it’s offline that you convert a prospect to a client.

 

LinkedIn is the premier business platform for social selling and the tips shared in this infographic represent just a small portion of the blueprint laid out in my brand-new book LinkedIn Unlocked: Unlock the Mystery of LinkedIn To Drive More Sales Through Social Selling.

 In LinkedIn Unlocked you will learn a step-by-step system that will help you generate a steady stream of new leads, clients, and sales on LinkedIn in under 30 minutes a day.

To celebrate the launch of LinkedIn Unlocked, there is also $221 in free bonuses, including a companion workbook with all of the exercises, worksheets, and templates provided in the book. Click here now to learn more about LinkedIn Unlocked and the exclusive bonuses.

double your business with linkedin

 

Melonie Dodaro, is the founder of Top Dog Social Media and a leading expert on LinkedIn and social selling. She’s the author of two books, including the #1 Amazon bestseller The LinkedIn Code and her brand-new book LinkedIn Unlocked. Melonie has trained over 27,000 businesses and individuals and appears on countless lists as a top sales and marketing influencer.

Thinking of quitting blogging? Read this first.

I don’t know how many times I’ve thought about quitting blogging. How about you?

On a scale from “not important” to “this puts money in my bank”, blogging seems to often falls left of centre. But, I keep writing and posting blogs. And in this post, I’m going to explain why you should as well.

The reality is it’s hard to be motivated about something that doesn’t have a direct impact on the bottom line. I mean, when was the last time someone read one of your blog posts and then gave you money?

Actually, that’s exactly what happens, but not in the way you think.

Now, before I get to the “motivational” part of this post, let’s talk about Alka-Seltzer.

Modern advertising

1950s advertising - quitting blogging
In the 1950’s clever marketers were perfecting the ad campaign.

In the 1950’s modern advertising was invented. During the post-war era of abundance, baby boomers, rebuilding, and consumerism, clever marketers were perfecting the ad campaign. In record time, products like Alka-Seltzer, Marlboro, Clairol, Anacin and Crest toothpaste gained massive market shares and became household names.

Push advertising has become more sophisticated since then, but the premise is the same: “Sell the benefits, deliver the features.”

But this only works if the consumer is already shopping. For example, if I’m in the market for a car or vacuum or girlfriend (at least one of these would be hard to explain to my wife) I might respond to your advertising. Then it’s just a matter of who has the most persuasive advertising campaign.

But, what if the consumer isn’t thinking about buying yet? Or, what if you’re more interested in building a long-term relationship with your client? What about then?

That’s where your blog comes in.

Pull marketing

Your blog is an example of “pull marketing”—the consumer is pulled to your blog because it solves a problem. Maybe it even entertains them.

With pull marketing we aren’t so concerned about selling right away—we’re building a long-term relationship; the kind of relationship where price is not as important and shopping around is unnecessary.

That’s why we need to go back to basics.

Back to basics

Don't quit blogging - even traditional companies now blogs
Even tradition companies have jumped on the blog bandwagon.

If you want a long-term relationship with your clients, blogs work.

Your blog doesn’t necessarily replace advertising, promotions, events or any other form of direct selling but blogs work wonders for developing long-term relationships with your client. Even tradition companies have jumped on the blog bandwagon, like Walmart, Allstate, Whole Foods, Caterpillar, and Disney. In fact, 67% of marketers report they are using blogs to promote their business. And it’s good business sense: building a relationship with your blog readers leads to them joining your mailing list and then being attracted to your offers.

After all, who would you rather market to: people who already know you and enjoy your advice or strangers?

Now for the motivational bit…

The road to Rome

Success with your blog comes down to a long-term commitment. Just as the road to Rome wasn’t built in a day (there’s the inspiring quote), it takes time to move a reader of your blog to a sale.

The good news is that customers who regularly consume your blog are much more likely to be long-term, faithful customers. And you can take that to the bank.

The secret is to treat your blog as a marketing expense and to measure results.

So, you need to do this today.

Do this today

Your Google Analytics dashboard is a great place to start to measure results.

The most popular question we get asked about BlogWorks (formerly SOS) is “How will I know it works?”. Before I answer that question, you need to step back and look at your sales cycle.

A blog is not direct selling – where a knock on a door either makes a sale or it doesn’t and a 10% close rate is a good day. Remember, blogs are a long-term game designed to build loyal customers.

That’s why you need to be measuring performance.

Just like a grocery store can measure sales in their store and make educated decisions about product positioning and displays, you can measure consumers experience of your blog by looking at basic traffic numbers.

Your Google Analytics dashboard offers up some basic measures that are a great place to start, like: “users”, “time on site” and “source of traffic.” In this post we show you how to have the dashboard automatically sent to you every week.

Next, just like you might compare your P&L year, by year, you should track these numbers with a simple spreadsheet We look at these every week, but even monthly will be helpful.

Just like checking your weight, or bank balance, tracking these numbers on a regular basis will help keep your blog (and traffic, opt-in’s and conversions) a part of your marketing conversations.

Blogging works for the businesses who are thinking lifetime value of a customer and are willing to earn those relationships. If that’s you, start thinking of your blog as an important part of your marketing strategy. And track its performance.

On the other hand, if all you want is quick sales, maybe you should pick up the phone.

Build blog traffic while you sleep: The BlogWorks Solution

Build blog traffic while you sleep - The SOS solution

Your blog is valuable and you’ve worked hard to publish great information that carefully targets your prime markets.

The challenge is to build blog traffic – you need more readers.

You can hire a VA in the Philippines or India – but now you have the job of recruiting, training and managing someone new.

You can try to promote your blog yourself – but that takes a lot of time and it can be confusing.

If you’re feeling really brave you can try advertising to build blog traffic – but that can be an expensive experiment that doesn’t get any results.

That’s where I was at.

I knew my blog was good – sure I could always spend more time on it, but I worked hard on content my market liked and wanted to read. So I tried all of the solutions I listed above. I spend months and months experimenting with outsourcing, advertising, promotions and talking to “experts.”

Maybe you’ve done the same?

Finally, I realized there was a simple solution waiting for me – all I needed to do was create the system that would allow me to use this solution at a low cost.

Using social media to build blog traffic

Here’s how it works

When you promote your latest blog article to your followers on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter, a percentage of them will come to your site to read the full article.

So far, so good.

But, there’s one more part to the solution.

Your followers will also promote your blog to their followers. Now you’re getting the leverage of your followers getting you access to their followers.

 

That’s The BlogWorks Solution

The BlogWorks solution was designed for bloggers who want a simple, done-for-you solution, customized to their needs that runs 24/7.

Oh, and one more thing: They also want an inexpensive solution.

The SOS solution

The secret to the BlogWorks Solution is we use your blog to create your social media

It’s your best thoughts, ideas and solutions turned into daily updates your followers want to read.

With BlogWorks, we take care of your social media and build blog traffic to get you more readers and more prospects. For the price of a coffee, we turn your blog into attention-grabbing social media posts daily on LinkedIn, Facebook, Google + and 4 times a day on Twitter.

Why our clients love BlogWorks:
Zero hassle, guaranteed delivery, great price and amazing results.

  • No constantly feed updates to complicated scheduling software,
  • No need to hire and train a VA (and then worry about results),
  • No need to worry about keeping up with social media,
  • And you don’t have to promote your blog –
    we do that!

BlogWorks is now being used by speakers and speakers bureaus in 4 countries and we have a team of 9 (all here in Canada).

In fact, I use BlogWorks to promote my speaker’s blog. And my monthly traffic went from 1,500 to 10,000 – all from BlogWorks.