Social Media Marketing Ideas

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15 Social Media Gift Ideas for #SocialMedia Lovers

Illustrated by David Flanagan

“Damn girl, you can eat.” Those words were the first sweet nothings that Patrick ever tweeted to me.

We met on Twitter. I was in the midst of a daylong food road trip with some friends for my birthday, and Patrick was in utter shock when he stumbled upon my feed full of buffalo wings, double-stuffed french toast, and juicy burgers. Long story short, we’re both foodies, and I was new to Providence, so we started making a weekly date of trying out every restaurant in Providence. And the rest is history, right? Yay, Twitter!

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Three Lessons From Managing a Winery on Facebook

It’s a lot of fun to have a Facebook fan base that interacts with your content. At the same time, it can get a little overwhelming and lead to mistakes. I handled the social media marketing at Adams County Winery for three years and loved seeing our page grow from just over 1,000 to nearly 10,000 likes in that time.  We had some great fans who loved our content and even had some pieces go viral, seen by more than a million people all over the world. It was a great learning experience about what to do and what not to do when running a small-business page on Facebook.  I also saw quite a few other pages make these mistakes, and want to show you how to avoid them.

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Birds of a Feather Flock Together … on Twitter

Is buying a few fake followers really that bad?

As you might know by now, I’ve been managing Twitter.About.com for a few months. This month, I took a break and asked my Twitter followers from @About_Tweeting what their most pressing questions were.

I chose the two that made me cringe most and you might be surprised how my answers turned out. I was.

For example, every time I try to teach a client about Twitter, their first go-to question is how they can set up automatic Twitter feeds. That question makes me cringe every time I hear it. Mostly because it’s hard to teach someone how to use Twitter when you know that their goal is to automate the whole thing.

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Loyalty: The True Long Tail of Social Media

The one thing most social media professionals won’t confess to a potential client on a first date is that the No. 1 return on their investment will be loyalty.

Nobody wants to hear that.

I know, because as a business selling social media services, I have to “sell” the concept of loyalty more often than I should. Loyalty? BAH! Show me the green! Let’s just say our all-organic-all-the-time foundation keeps us very selective about who we work with. BuzzFarmers, remember?

And are their opportunities for e-commerce? Sure, especially if you’re an e-commerce driven company. But the reason why most companies aren’t seeing an immediate return on their investment for social media, and the reason why social media is moving toward a branding function where companies buy followers, more than a marketing function where companies earn them, is because the return on your social media investment takes time.

For example …

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All That Twitter Lingo Jazz You Need to Know

Illustrated by Nick Palazzo

This month, I’m putting together a glossary of terms for Twitter.About.com, because Twitter is a beehive of jargon that scares people away before they ever really get into it.

Twitter has done a great job at turning some of the former jargon into site features (the retweet button, linked hashtags) but there’s still plenty to learn. Even I only just learned what a MT is. Apparently now when you shorten or edit a retweet, you’ve gotta mark it as a Modified Tweet (MT). That’s, of course, not patrolled by the Twitter police or anything, but another implied community rule.

The new Twitter glossary isn’t complete, but then again, is any glossary ever complete?

In any case, there are a ton of glossary terms in the post, so let’s get started!

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Why You Want More Twitter Followers (or Do You?)

Illustrated by Patrick Yurick

The main reason people want more Twitter followers is to build credibility. For businesses, it’s a good way to show your reputation. For people, especially those looking for a job in social media, it’s a way to prove influence.

The more followers you have, the more people will be inclined to trust you. The idea of getting more followers might make you feel like you’re in high school: the more followers you have, the more popular you appear.

It’s because of this that some people choose to “cheat” the system by buying followers or using automated programs (more on that later).

But there’s a benefit to more Twitter followers beyond just the “body count.”

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How To: Increase Facebook Visibility & Reach Without Buying “Promoted Posts”

Illustrated by Patrick Yurick

Facebook’s biggest fail wasn’t that they asked businesses to pay to increase Facebook visibility, but that they put all fans in a bucket and made them re-establish their loyalty just to see posts from their favorite brands and companies. Businesses hate it, and so do their fans. They signed up for updates, so why should Facebook determine which ones they see?

Remember the days when you could just post a link on Facebook, and optimistically guess how many people saw your link? When a post got no likes or comments, you just assumed you were doing something wrong and iterated. Typically, these iterations resulted in more likes and follows.

I’m not sure if there was ever a time when Facebook Business Pages got the same visibility as profile pages in any one person’s feed, but the one thing that’s for sure is that the one big mystery everyone wants to solve with our new BuzzAudit is where their formerly attentive audience went.

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Hurricane Marketing: How to Piss Off People During a Natural Disaster

Illustration by Nick Palazzo

 Around midnight last night, when our power came back on from Sandy’s passing, I thought to myself, “Are there any scheduled tweets in my Hootsuite account right now?” Thankfully, the answer was no, and my feeds had been silent as long as our busted generator had been.

But a glance on Twitter showed that I wasn’t the only one thinking about how stupid a scheduled tweet might look during a crisis.

Even worse, hurricane marketing became a fad over the past couple of days. The word-of-mouth era isn’t exactly the greatest time to make a bad decision, because there’s no such thing as a “quiet mistake.” You can’t accidentally tweet from the wrong account, and you most certainly can’t try to make a dollar off of a Hurricane. Even if half of the Northeast were making jokes about it a few days ago and posting that tired photo of the tipped over lawn chair.

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