How To Get Your First 1,000 Social Followers

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Today, we’re going to look at one of the biggest questions we get sent here at The Social Wrap. How do you get your first followers on social media? Now, I sympathise with this question. And I firmly believe that those first 1,000 are the hardest to find. Once you hit 1,000, the process snowballs a little. We’ll focus mostly on Facebook and Twitter, but the tricks are applicable to all the social sites. Ready to get your socials off the ground? Let’s take a look.

 

Put links everywhere!

We’ll start with a simple and easy option. Start putting links to your social media sites everywhere. The first 100 or so followers should come from your existing connections. In other words, friends, colleagues, or acquaintances. Put links in your email signature, and in all your correspondence. Stick a Facebook ‘like box’ on your website, so visitors can quickly follow your feed. Do the same with the ‘follow’ button for Twitter.

 

Set up a social strategy

If you’re going to hit 1,000 followers, you need to be strict about your social strategy. Social media, like any other marketing strategy, requires goals, plans, and commitment. So, let’s get started by creating a content calendar. What are you going to post, and how often? Start by committing to perhaps two blogs a week to share with your followers. Fill in the gaps by posing questions, posting images and videos, or curating content. The important thing is that you stay active and engaging.

 

Connect with others

This is a strategy that works particularly well on Twitter. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that building 1,000 followers on Twitter is much easier than Facebook. The reason being that most people follow others on Twitter with less resistance than Facebook. Start by following others in your niche. Follow the tastemakers, and identify the most active Twitter users in your sector. Follow them, reply to their tweets, and introduce yourself. It won’t take long to build up those first few exchanges, and your numbers will grow.

 

Get some help from the pros

If you’ve tried some of the above tactics, and progress is slow, you can always bring in help. There are plenty of social media agencies out there with the skills and resources to grow your presence. Take a look at some social media services pricing options, and see what works for you.

 

The shortcut

There’s always a shortcut when it comes to marketing online! However, as always, it costs money. You can skip the slow, laborious process of gathering followers one-by-one with advertising. By using social media adverts, you can quickly drive lots of relevant people to your page. Facebook is well set up for this, and you can target a very particular audience with your ads. Use your best piece of content, and fine tune your ad copy for the best results.

Using these tricks and techniques, you’ll land your first 1,000 followers in no time! That’s the hard part over, now for 10,000!

Here’s How Businesses Are Using Social Media To Get To The Top

Social media has plenty of uses. Recently, we’ve started to see it being used more and more in the business world. So, I thought I’d write a short piece on how businesses are using social media to get to the top:

Social Media Marketing & Advertising

Most businesses will primarily use social media for marketing and advertising purposes. Social media marketing is one of the top marketing techniques around right now. People are noticing how successful it can make their marketing campaigns.  As seen here websitepromoter.co.uk there are agencies that offer social media marketing services. The purpose is to give you as big a presence as possible on social media. This includes upping your follower count on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+. Every main social networking site you can think of. If you amass a large following on social media, it puts your business in a good position. You’ll be more well known, and the public will start to recognize your company more often.

 

Social media advertising is all about using adverts on social media. Yes, you could probably guess that based on the name! It’s a very popular method of advertising one’s business. Why? Because there are, literally, millions of people on social networking sites every day. Displaying adverts on Facebook or Twitter is a tactic destined for success. On Twitter, you can also promote your tweets so more people can see them and follow you. But, you can also have adverts placed that seamlessly blend into people’s timelines. Facebook is similar; you can promote your business page or get your adverts shown on people’s Facebook timelines. Like I said, it’s a very effective way of advertising your business to a mass audience.

SocialMedia_Cube

(Image provided by Flickr: https://flic.kr/p/e9Hsgr)

Customer Service & Engagement

Another huge way that businesses use social media is for customer service purposes. There’s nothing wrong with providing all your customer service over the phone. Some companies still do this, but social media provides you with another option. It gives you a way to communicate with customers and answer any queries instantly. In fact, loads of big businesses have accounts set up purely for customer service. These are accounts consumers can talk to, and they’ll help them out ASAP. It’s a fast and convenient way of dealing with any customer issues.

 

People like this type of customer service because it’s quick and easy. They don’t have to spend ages on the phone trying to get through to an advisor. All it takes is a couple of seconds to tweet or post a comment, and you’re sorted. Of course, there are a few tricks to providing customer service on social media, as seen here www.zendesk.com.  It brings me onto another mini point here too. Businesses use social media to engage with customers. It’s a fine way to open up a channel of communication between both parties. Businesses can keep their customers updated with any goings on and news.

 

Now you can see the main ways in which businesses are using social media to get on top. It’s further proof that social media isn’t just a place for teens to mess about and abuse celebrities. A lot can be done with it if used in the correct manner.  

 

Have You Been Social Selling All Along? by Susan Marshall

Chances are, you’ve read a blog post, joined a webinar or attended a conference that celebrated the “social selling” revolution. Supporters of the social selling movement claimed that LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and other social sites would bring an end to the stereotype of pushy, disconnected, quota-hungry salespeople and give rise to a new breed of relationship-first sellers who use social media to seek connections instead of transactions; who share valuable resources instead of pushing products; who listen instead of talk.

Yet despite the promise of social selling, just one in four salespeople know how to use social media to sell, and a mere 31 percent of reps report using social media at all in their sales process.

The meager adoption of social selling, however, isn’t because it doesn’t work. In fact, 73 percent of social salespeople strongly outperform their traditional selling peers. The problem is that the concept of social selling is woefully misunderstood.

Many salespeople tend to think of social selling as an entirely new discipline: “I know how to sell in the real world, but now I need to learn how to sell on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.” But the simple truth is that social selling isn’t new. The same traits that determine if you’re a good salesperson offline—being honest, helpful, and informative—are what make salespeople successful in the social sphere. Social media are tools. Being a good salesperson is a mindset13. (highlight to tweet)

So, although you may have at first been intimidated by the concept of social selling, understanding the similarities between selling online and traditional selling will help put you at ease. You’ve been social selling all along, and you didn’t even know it.

LinkedIn: Like Trade Shows Without the Travel

Trade shows are a massive investment in time and money. The average attendee travels more than 400 miles to each show and spends more than eight hours meandering through a maze of exhibits in search of leads. The grueling days and hefty travel expenses are worth it, though, if each trade show visit results in new relationships forged on the exhibit hall floor.

It’s that same ability to build meaningful, long-lasting relationships that makes LinkedIn so valuable to salespeople.

Contrary to popular belief, LinkedIn is more than a job-hunting destination—it’s an incredibly deep research and prospecting tool that can be used to unearth new prospects and identify key points of entry into the businesses you’re targeting.

Consider how you select which trade shows to attend before buying a badge. You visit the trade show website, do some research on who’s slated to speak and which companies are signed on to exhibit, and then make a judgement call on if you think it’ll draw the type of prospects you’re looking for.

Finding and connecting with prospects on LinkedIn is even easier. Featuring a variety of search options and detailed profiles, LinkedIn enables you to quickly find the people you want to connect wit2h and makes it easy to ask existing connections to introduce you to their connections to broaden your network.

Following through on our analogy, if you think of LinkedIn as a trade show, thenLinkedIn Groups are the swanky, invite-only after parties. And, just like at real parties, nobody likes a pushy salesman crashing a LinkedIn Group. Groups aren’t a place to hawk your products and services. Rather, they’re a place where you can answer questions, share relevant and informative resources, and engage in conversations. By joining in on these real—albeit digital—conversations, you’ll earn a reputation as an expert whose products or services are worth paying attention to.

Twitter: A Warmer Alternative to Cold Calls

Think those cold calls are working? Think again. According to sales research groupHuthwaite, 91 percent of people never respond to cold calls and, even worse, 71 percent find them annoying2. Even salespeople hate cold calling: 63 percent of reps say it’s what they hate most about their jobs.

Even if cold calling is a necessary evil to filling your funnel, wouldn’t it be nice to know just a little bit about a prospect before reaching out to them? Well, think of Twitter as a tool for making cold calls warmer.

The best thing about Twitter is that you don’t need to tweet a single thing to start seeing its value—all you need to do is start “listening.” Twitter is the perfect tool for conducting some basic pre-sales research, because you can search for specific keywords and phrases to identify prospects. Plugging in a competitor’s name might turn up a Twitter rant from an unhappy customer looking to make a switch. Or, you might find that a prospect is narrowing down their shortlist and looking for suggestions from the Twittersphere. You may even stumble upon some of your own customers requesting (or, in more severe cases, demanding) help.

Twitter enables you to find and engage with prospects at every stage of the sales cycle, and can even help you intervene should a current customer be having a hard time. And, should you be so inclined to share some tweets of your own, you’ll find that the Twitter audience is eager for advice: 73 percent of people trust the information they receive from Twitter.

Now, isn’t that better than taking a shot in the dark on a cold call?

Facebook: A Friendlier Way to Nurture Leads

Potential buyers don’t become customers overnight. In fact, according to MarketingSherpa, 79 percent of marketing leads never convert into sales due to lack of lead nurturing. Conversely, leads that are effectively nurtured make 47 percent larger purchases than non-nurtured leads, according to The Annuitas Group.

Relationships are critical in today’s sales cycles, and the only way to build those relationships is by communicating with buyers throughout every stage. Phone calls and email have been the two biggest lead nurturing mainstays among sales reps, but Facebook presents a unique opportunity for salespeople to connect with prospects and maintain relationships over time.

While Facebook started as a way for college kids and, eventually, friends and family to keep in touch, it has evolved to become an important source of news and information for the majority of adults. Nearly 80 percent of people consume some news when checking Facebook, including a small percentage who consider Facebook their primary news source. In other words, it’s no longer taboo to share information (provided it’s relevant and useful) with your Facebook friends.

Nurturing leads on Facebook is no different than nurturing them on a phone call to check in or an email that includes a relevant case study. Nurturing—using any communication channel—is less about closing the sale, and more about answering and asking questions, providing valuable content, and engaging in real conversations. And because Facebook is a place where people are more inclined to share what’s happening in their personal lives, it can lead to even deeper, more meaningful connections.

You’re Already a Social Selling Pro

Social Selling isn’t a new concept; it’s simply taking the same traits that make people good at selling at trade shows, on phone calls, and throughout the nurturing process and applying them across social channels. If your goal is to provide useful information and forge a meaningful relationship, then you will see your sales spike regardless of if you’re meeting in-person on the trade show floor or on LinkedIn, making contact through a cold call or on Twitter, or nurturing through follow-up emails or Facebook. Simply put: social selling is selling.

 

 

For 25 years, Susan Marshall has been building and launching some of the best-in-class professional web and video editing applications including Flash, Dreamweaver, and Final Cut Pro, as well as leading digital marketing efforts for ExactTarget, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, and more. Capitalizing on her past experience at Apple and mobile startups like ChaCha, Susan now serves as the CEO and co-founder of Torchlite Digital Marketing

​Twitter Undergoes a Makeover

The website now has a new homepage to greet its users

Social networking service Twitter has just revamped its homepage in an attempt to attract more non-users to create an account.

Twitter has announced in an official blog post that their homepage was getting “refreshed,” implying that they wanted to make it more attractive so that it would convince people to sign up for a new account.

Given that Twitter has laid much emphasis on the fact that it became one of the most reliable real-time news search engines, and that it wants to add even more users to the hundreds of millions who already access its service every month, this change was no surprise.

Since the old homepage was rather scant in terms of design and even information, many people considered it was about time Twitter came up with an overhaul.

The simple background image that was urging users to log in has now turned into a more complex one, which is made up of several categories people can choose from.

The new homepage gives you a preview of how Twitter works

Based on what they are interested in, Twitter users can now click on a certain category and they will be taken to torrents of tweets related to that particular subject. This way, they can get a closer look at how things work and maybe they will be convinced that a Twitter account is something they absolutely need.

Or at least this is what Twitter had in mind when it rolled out the new feature, mainly based on the statistics showing that more than 125 million people visit the homepage every month without signing up for an account, Mashable reports.

This impressive number must have been the reason behind Twitter’s decision to take some measures and have some work done on its homepage in order to intrigue curious onlookers by adding some samples of tweets.

It has now added categories like Politics, Pop Artists or Cute Animals, with the sole purpose of convincing people that they should sing up in order to enjoy the real-time content.

It’s almost as if Twitter were giving them a taste of what they could experience if they decide to get started on the social network.

The homepage has been made available for US users only for the time being, but Twitter announced it would gradually roll it out in other countries as well.

Compliments to Softpedia for content

Twitter ROI is 965% higher than Adwords. Guest post by Ehsan K

All businesses around the world operate in different ways and have different objective but, they all have one very important goal in common;  ROI.

ROI is a question you hear everywhere and almost by everyone; but in different shape and form of course.

Businesses adopted almost every new technology and platform to ensure they are seen by their customers and prospects at all times. This is particularly true when it comes to social media. However one thing has remained vague since adoption of social media, in 2009, by businesses; and that is ROI!

According to Javier Burón, Founder and CEO of SocialBro, 88% of marketers want to know how to measure ROI of their social media activities. Javier presented an interesting slide in which he broke down different channels (most used by marketers for advertising); and Twitter clearly stands out!

SocialBro

As it is evident above, every channel is pushing ROI; and of course deployment of a specific channel would depend on type of business and target audience. Thus, it is critical for businesses and marketers to know their audience well before spending money on any channel; in particular on social media where everything is all about conversation and content.

Good social media content has to be a combination of relevancy, reach and quality. Needless to say, no-one can guarantee and even achieve ROI in social media unless they are relevant and meaningful to their audience; which begins with listening. This is possibly why Twitter is constantly improving its usability and accessibility; to be easier for people to use the channel.

According to some anecdotal research, well over 65% of Twitter users are more likely to buy from brands they follow. So you can guess what would be the case if brands don’t interact with their followers on Twitter and mobile has a major role in converting Twitter followers to actual business customers. Therefore having an attribution model in place is very important; something can substantially help measuring ROI.

Search Engine Watch

So, unlike many brands competing for more followers on Twitter or more likes on Facebook; numbers, including number of posts by brands, are to some large extent irrelevant to success in social media, proactive engagement and meaningful conversations are the way forward. So, don’t worry about ROI, just try to make sense; and remain transparent and authentic at all times. this way people trust you and happily spend their money with you; then ROI in social media will no longer be vague.

Follow Ehsan on Twitter

The History of HashTags # [Infographic]

Twitter is largely responsible for turning the hashtag -#- into a household term, and many see the success of hashtags at connecting users based on common themes or discussion topics as one of Twitter’s biggest strengths.

Hootsuite have published a post titled – “Will you miss the hashtag when it’s gone?” – in response to Vivian Schiller, calling hashtags “arcane”. Worth a read.

Ben Martin

How often do you use hashtags?

Best Practices for Customer Service on Twitter

Ben MartinTwitter has become the go-to medium for customers looking to provide feedback or solve problems, brands must adapt their Twitter strategy to better serve their customers. Below you will find a check list that best-in-class brands have adopted to better handle customer service requests and maintain positive sentiment about their brand.

 

1.Dedicated handle
Brands who have adopted dedicated customer service handles have an easier time managing customer service requests for both the dedicated handle and for the brand’s main handle. With a dedicated handle, brands can ensure that customer service requests are being taken care of in a manner consistent with the brand’s overall customer retention strategy. A dedicated customer service handle can help your brand separate a wide range of customer service requests from other types of mentions so you can effectively monitor your social customer service process. In addition, it can be a great way to naturally gain followers. Through proactive monitoring and engagement, you have the ability to build positive sentiment around your brand, which will help increase your audience size and encourage engagement.

2.Dedicate team and the right tools
When a customer service handle isn’t staffed the response time increases dramatically while the response rates decrease. Knowing when most of your customer service requests come in via twitter can help you determine the best time to staff your customer service accounts. There are several great tools that can monitor your most active Tweet times.

3. Canned answers + resources
Having responses on-hand can help reduce your response time and help increase response rate, as your customer service representatives have more sophisticated resources available to resolve issues. In addition, outline where you’ll direct different types of customer service requests, whether you ask for more information from your customers, direct them to email, direct them to a webpage, or solve the issue in a direct message.

4. Rules of engagement and primary handle guidelines
If you’re debating on whether or not to set up a dedicated customer service handle, you’ll want to determine how to handle customer service requests that are directed to the primary handle. You’ll also want to monitor mentions of your brand name in the event that Twitter users aren’t following, or aren’t aware of your brand handles. Effective monitoring can help resolve customer issues before they start – helping to keep sentiments positive around your brand handle. Not only that, let your followers know (daily) when your customer service handle is staffed. This will help to reduce posts when that handle is not staffed and or set expectations of response time

5. Promoting your handle
When you’re setting up a dedicated customer service handle, consider where you’ll promote the handle – for example, you may want to link your handle via your customer support page, so that users have a range of options to contact your customer service representatives. You may want to also find a way to link your main handle to your customer service handle (for example, in your brand bio) so that users who visit your profile are aware that you’ve got a dedicated customer service handle.

6. Reducing your response time
This is one way of letting your followers know that they are important to your business. In addition, it’s a proactive way to address negative word of mouth that may affect the sentiment generated around your brand.

7. Responding to as many mentions as possible
Responding to a majority of requests is a great way to keep your followers happy, and engaged. If your brand responds to as many mentions as possible, your users are more likely to mention your brand handle more often, which means your handle has the potential to reach followers who may be outside your reach.

CONCLUSION:
Understanding the rules of engagement for customer service on Twitter is a crucial step to managing your overall customer service strategy. As more and more users turn to Twitter to ask questions, give feedback, praise or complain about a brand, brands need to be proactive in managing their brand image – by showing customers that they’re listening, and that they care. Since Twitter is a word-of-mouth platform, these steps are essential for any company looking to increase their business in the digital world.

The State of Twitter and 10 Mavericks You Should Absolutely Follow

The State of Twitter and 10 Mavericks You Should Absolutely Follow via +Kim Garst on Huffington Post.

http://huff.to/ODWzxm

There are now 241 million active users (MAUs). This is a 30 percent increase year over year!

There are 184 million #mobile MAUs; 76 percent of all MAUs are mobile!

Timeline views reached 148 BILLION in Q4, a 26 percent increase year over year!

Q4 revenue was $243 million, up 116 percent year over year and adjusted full year earnings were $75 million.

Plus, in just the last quarter, #Twitter has launched television conversation targeting, tailored audiences, conversation tracking and promoted accounts.

So, hopefully I have made my point. I have been and will continue to go ALL IN on Twitter. If you are smart, you might want to give some serious thought to going all in yourself.

Guide to Twitter inspired by Dr. Seuss

Who doesn’t love Dr. Suess! Well if you don’t – ah well, there’s other posts you can read here!

Dr. Seuss, the writer and illustrator behind children’s classics The Cat in the HatHow the Grinch Stole Christmas! and The Lorax, would have turned 110 on March 2nd. If he were alive today, he would have been a social media master. So to honor his wit and wisdom, here’s an interpretation of the Seuss guide to Twitter from Hootsuite

Dr Suess