Pamorama | Social Media Marketing blog is all about how organizations can optimize their online presence and branding with social media and digital marketing in order to be found online. The content helps businesses understand how to use social networks to find leads, increase sales, and improve branding using marketing via Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and other social networks. It also touches on blogging, inbound and content marketing, and Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
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12 Secret Facebook Features Every Marketer Should Use
2015-08-29 23:47 UTC by Pam Dyer
Mastering hidden Facebook features will help you get ahead of your competition.
Managing an active and successful Facebook page with a thriving community can be a daunting experience. As your fanbase grows, so does their insatiable appetite for content. Coupled with their comments, messages, questions, issues, etc., the time spent managing your page can grow exponentially.
The team at Post Planner created the great infographic at the bottom of this post that highlights some secret Facebook features that you can leverage to avoid being overwhelmed. I’ve expanded on their suggestions to help you master some hidden Facebook features that will help you gain new followers, create engagement, and increasing your profits.
1. Save articles on Facebook with “Save for Later”
The Facebook Save feature is a great tool that can help you curate relevant content that you can publish later on your Facebook page. You can save items like links, places, movies, TV, and music. Only you can see the items you save unless you choose to share them.
You can view the items you’ve saved at any time by going to your saved items in the “More” tab on mobile or by clicking the link on the left hand side of Facebook on the web.
Your saved items list is organized by category and you can swipe right on each item to share it with your friends or move it into your archive list.
To save something you see on Facebook:
- From a Facebook Page: Click and then select Save
- From an event: Click Save
- Note: You can’t save photos or posts without links.
To view the things you’ve saved on Facebook:
2. Leverage Facebook Interest Lists to stay organized
Ideas for creating and segmenting interest lists:
- Create a Facebook list of top social media experts that features thought leaders’ Pages and public updates from the its members
- Create a Facebook list by industry, such as advertising, consumer goods, marketing
- Create a Facebook list by medium, e.g. traditional marketing vs. social media marketing
When you create or follow a list, you may also see some posts from that list in your main News Feed.
Your Facebook lists will also appear in the Interests section of your bookmarks. Simply click the list’s name to see all the recent posts and activity from the Pages and people featured in the list.
3. Monitor your competitors’ Facebook pages
Did you know that you can track your competitors’ pages with Facebook Insights? It’s an easy way to monitor their content.
If at least 100 people like your Facebook Page, you can create a list of Pages to watch:
- Click Insights at the top of your Page
- Scroll down to Pages to Watch and click Add Pages
- Search for a Page you want to watch or choose from suggested Pages and click Watch Page
- After choosing at least 5 Pages, click Done
- You can add up to 100 Pages to Watch, so don’t worry about running out of space.
Remember that when you add a Facebook Page to watch, the people who manage the Page will receive a notification — but it won’t include your name or the name of your Page.
Once you’ve added Pages to watch, you can see insights about these Pages. To stop watching a Page:
- Click Insights at the top of your Page
- Scroll down to Pages to Watch
- Hover over the Page you want to remove and click x
4. Download your Facebook history to analyze business analytics
You can download your entire Facebook history and use it to gain analytical insights. The downloadable data includes much of the same information available to you in your account and activity log, including your Timeline info, posts you have shared, messages, photos, etc. It also includes information that is not available simply by logging into your account, like the ads you have clicked on, data like the IP addresses that are logged when you log into or out of Facebook, and more.
- To download your information, go to your Settings and click Download a copy of your Facebook data.
5. Tag personal profiles to create more Facebook interaction
- Go to the status update box
- Start typing your message and when you get to the part you want to make clickable (has to be a page or profile) add the @ symbol, just as you would normally do on your personal Facebook page
- A dropdown menu will appear with a list of the pages and profiles you like/are connected to
- Select the profile or page
- Finish your message and update
- Note: you can’t tag any fan that also isn’t a friend of your personal profile.
6. Pin Facebook posts to the top of your timeline to increase visibility
Pinning a post to the top of your Facebook Timeline makes the content stand out from the pack. You need to be an admin or editor to pin Page posts.
To pin a post to the top of your Facebook Page’s Timeline:
- Go to the post on your Page’s Timeline
- Hover over the top-right corner of the post and click
- Select Pin to Top
Your pinned post will move to the top of your Page’s Timeline and will appear in the top-right corner of the post. Your pinned post will stay at the top of your Page’s Timeline for 7 days. After that, it will revert to the date it was published on your Page’s Timeline.
Keep in mind that you can only pin posts created by your Facebook Page. Posts that other people add to your Page’s Timeline can’t be pinned.
7. Find evangelists and weed out fakes with your Facebook fan list
Here’s how to easily track your Facebook fans:
- Go to your Facebook page settings
- Click on “Banned Users” on the left sidebar
- Once you’ve done this, click on the menu that says “Banned” to reveal the dropdown menu
- Click on “People Who Like This”
8. Mark all Facebook notifications as “read” so you stop stressing out
Receiving constant Facebook notifications about unread notifications can drive you crazy. To stop this from happening:
- Go to your Facebook page settings
- Click on “Mark all notifications as read” in the top right corner
9. Use Post Attribution settings to keep your identity intact
Ever post on your Facebook page and realize that you used the wrong identity? Use the default Post Attribution setting to solve the problem.
- Go to your page settings
- Click on “Post Attribution” in the left sidebar
- Select your preferred default identity
Now all of your future posts will keep your identity straight.
10. Save time by filtering your Facebook page posts by type
Trolling through a lot of Facebook page posts can be very time-consuming. Here’s how to filter Facebook post by type to save time and be more organized:
- Click on “Activity Log” in the left sidebar of your page settings
- Choose the appropriate post type to generate a specific list
11. Manage your Facebook ad notifications and emails to keep your inbox clear
- Go to Facebook ads manager
- Click on “Settings” in the left sidebar
- Scroll down to the Ads Emails Notification section
- Select the notifications you’d like to receive
12. Track Facebook Ad Relevance
To ensure that your Facebook ads are delivered to the appropriate audience (thus improving your ROI), you should track your relevance score.
Here’s how to see if you have access:
- Go to Ads Manager
- Click on “Campaigns” in the left sidebar
- Click on your Campaign name and go into the ad set
- Look at the 5th column from the right — if it’s there, you can track away!
12 Secret Facebook Features Every Marketer Should Use is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.
8 Big Social Media Marketing Mistakes Businesses Make (and How to Avoid Them)
2015-07-12 23:42 UTC by Pam Dyer
Social media marketing is vital for business growth these days.
Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter present unique opportunities to reach your target customers. Whether you’re a startup or a more established company, social media plays a vital role in today’s marketing landscape. It is crucial to growing awareness for your products and services, so it’s important to get off on the right foot or you risk alienating your audience entirely.
You never get a second chance to make a good first impression.
First impressions are quick, powerful, and enduring — it’s very important to do everything you can to make a good one. Changing a first impression is doable, but it’s best to avoid making social media marketing mistakes in the first place.
8 social media marketing mistakes to avoid
1. Not having a social media strategy
Companies without a social media strategy whatsoever can never deliver effective messages to their audiences. Communications appear disjointed and confused. You must have a distinct voice, measurable goals, a social media policy, and a publication calendar. Without these, you’ll find yourself posting blindly and diminishing your brand capital. A clear delineated social media strategy puts you on the path to offering useful, engaging content that is sticky and memorable.
2. Creating accounts on too many social media platforms
Please refrain from signing up for every social media platform out there. Yes, it’s important to be in more than one place, but not when you’re just starting out. Especially for small businesses, it’s much easier and more effective to master one platform before you branch out to the next. If you rush to create a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, Vimeo, LinkedIn, Google+, Slideshare, Vine, and Snapchat and begin madly posting incoherently on all of them, you will look like you don’t know what you’re doing. And when you finally throw up your hands and abandon most of your platforms because you can’t do justice to them, it looks even worse. Would you purchase something from a company that’s projecting how inept they are? I wouldn’t — this type of activity does nothing to engender trust, which is the basis of any customer relationship.
3. Paying for followers
Quantity doesn’t trump quality. Your goal is to build genuine customer relationships rather than focusing on numbers. Earning thousands of followers — and the social proof that accompanies them — takes time and diligent effort. Buying followers can potentially create a nasty public backlash. Do you really want to risk your real fans’ finding out that you bought social media followers? What does this say about your honesty as a company? It damages your brand and negatively affects your bottom line.
If your social media accounts contain an endless stream of only your content, it is off-putting for the most part. Sure, you’re trying to promote your products and services, but you also need to share content that is relevant to your niche but not authored by you. A good place to start is with the 5-3-2 Model for Social Sharing, which will keep your fans engaged and help you build a larger following. So if you publish 10 social media posts per week:
- 5 should be relative content from others
- 3 should be content by you that is relevant to your audience but not sales-y
- 2 should consist of fun, personal content that helps humanize your brand
5. Not using hashtags correctly
The use of hashtags in social media marketing can help immensely when it comes to creating visibility for your brand and what it has to offer. #But#using#them#too#much #is #annoying. Combat this by limiting their usage and make sure that they’re relevant to what you’re trying to communicate to your followers.
6. Sharing too much in a short period of time
Publishing one post after the other within minutes or hours can alienate your followers and prospects. Your goal should be to share posts consistently and spread them out so you avoid overwhelming and spamming your followers. Otherwise they may unfollow you and never return.
7. Neglecting to proofread
Ever noticed a Facebook post with misspelled words? How about a tweet with missing punctuation? Sloppy spelling and grammar can undo all the progress you’ve made and diminish your credibility. Lots of people are turned off when you use “it’s” instead of “its” or “their” instead of “they’re”. Proofreading your own work can be challenging, but it’s an important component of creating a positive impression on your audience.
8. Not being “social” on social media
People who use social media expect companies to be responsive. They also want to feel like they’re dealing with a human being instead of a corporate robot. Responding to comments builds trust and intimacy between you and your customers. It’s also helpful to use a voice that’s interesting and witty vs. monotone and off-putting.
8 Big Social Media Marketing Mistakes Businesses Make (and How to Avoid Them) is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.
A Comprehensive Guide to Your Social Media Image Sizes
2015-06-28 23:45 UTC by Pam Dyer
Make an impact with your social media images!
Harnessing the power of images makes your social media marketing more powerful and memorable. You’re probably already using the visual elements of your brand on your social media channels. If you want them to have an impact, they need to be the correct size for each platform so they maintain their clarity and proportions — otherwise you risk appearing unprofessional.
Profile Image Dimensions for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+, YouTube, Tumblr, and Vine
The skillful use of images and photos can turn concepts and intangible values into concrete cohesive messaging that helps your audience internalize your brand’s value proposition and remember you when they want to buy something.
Use this guide to make sure that you’re making the right impression on social media:
For profile pictures and cover photos with your logo or text, you may get a better result by using a PNG file.
Facebook profile photo size
180 x 180 pixels (minimum), cropped to fit a square
Displays at 160 x 160 pixels on computers, 140 x 140 pixels on smartphones, and 50 x 50 pixels on most feature phones
Facebook cover photo size
399 x 150 pixels (minimum)
Doesn’t display on feature phones
Displays at 851 x 315 pixels on computers and 640 x 360 pixels on smartphones
Loads fastest as an sRGB JPG file that’s 851 x 315 pixels, and less than 100 kilobytes
Bonus: Facebook ad sizes
Facebook ad sizes depend on your objectives. Your image will be automatically resized if its dimensions vary from those specified in the Facebook Ads Guide.
Clicks to website: 1200 x 628 pixels
Website conversions: 1200 x 628 pixels
Page post engagement: 1200 x 900 pixels
Page likes: 1200 x 444 pixels
App installs: 1200 x 628 pixels
App engagement: 1200 x 628 pixels
Local awareness: 1200 x 628 pixels
Event responses: 1200 x 444 pixels
Offer claims: 1200 x 628 pixels
Video views: 1200 x 675 pixels
Twitter header photo size
1500 x 500 pixels
Twitter profile photo size
400 x 400 pixels
Images in tweets
Although Twitter doesn’t recommend a specific image size for tweets, its in-stream preview is 440 x 220 pixels (a 2:1 ratio). Any horizontal image will be cut off at the top and bottom but not at the sides in the Twitter stream.
Bonus: Twitter card image sizes
Twitter summary card: Minimum = 120 x 120 pixels
Twitter summary card with large image: Minimum = 280 x 150 pixels
Twitter app card: The image uploaded to the iTunes/Google Play store must be less than 1MB
Twitter photo card: Deprecated as of 7/3/15 and mapped to the summary card with large image
Twitter gallery card: Deprecated as of 7/3/15 and mapped to the summary card with large image
Twitter product card: Deprecated as of 7/3/15 and mapped to the summary card
Instagram profile picture size
110 x 110 pixels
Instagram photo thumbnail size
161 x 161 pixels
Instagram shared video size
640 x 640 pixels
Instagram photo size
640 x 640 pixels
Pinterest profile picture size
≥ 165 x 165 pixels
Pinterest board cover image size
215 x 145 pixels
Pinterest board thumbnail image
68 x 68 pixels
Pinterest pin preview image size
235 x 800 pixels
Expanded Pinterest pin image size
≤ 735 pixels x infinite height
LinkedIn standard logo size
100 x 600 pixels
LinkedIn square logo size
50 x 50 pixels
LinkedIn banner image size
646 x 220 pixels
LinkedIn shared image size
360 x ≤265 pixels
LinkedIn shared link image size
180 x 110 pixels
Google+ profile photo size
250 x 250 pixels
Google+ cover image size
1080 x 608 pixels
Google+ shared image width
≥ 506 pixels
Google+ shared video size
≥ 506 x 284 pixels
Google+ shared link size – large
≥ 506 x 284 pixels
Google+ shared link – small
150 x 150 pixels
YouTube channel icon size
800 x 800 pixels
YouTube channel art size – TV
2560 x 1440 pixels
YouTube channel art size – desktop
1546 x 423 pixels
Tumblr profile picture size
128 x 128 pixels
Tumblr dashboard view size
540 pixels wide
Vine profile picture size
Defaults to Twitter profile
Vine video size
540 x 540 pixels
Check out this infographic from Spredfast to learn more about the complexities of social media image and video sizes:
Social media image sizes 2015
A Comprehensive Guide to Your Social Media Image Sizes is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.
How to Foster a Cohesive Social Media Brand
2015-06-07 22:06 UTC by Pam Dyer
Are you using social media marketing to extend your brand’s reach?
If so, you’re probably using more than one platform. Twitter and Facebook are the most prominent social networks, but others like Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Instagram are very valuable channels as well. When you’re managing multiple profiles, it’s vital to present a cohesive and consistent brand message across all of them. If not, you run the risk of creating brand confusion and disseminating mixed messages to your audience.
Your brand defines you and communicates your brand’s promise. Its unique personality shapes the way you build relationships with your audience. Your brand consists of tangible elements that combine to create your identity — what you communicate to the world about how you can address your customers’ needs and solve their problems. It is communicated via your logo, color palette, marketing materials — all outward-facing messaging that comprise its identity. If all of these elements aren’t consistent and cohesive across all of your social media channels, it can erode brand loyalty and hurt your bottom line.
: a condition in which people or things are closely united
: the act or state of sticking together tightly
: union between similar plant parts or organs
: molecular attraction by which the particles of a body are united throughout the mass
Consumers have become marketers
Consumers have always been the arbiters of what your brand means, which doesn’t necessarily reflect what’s in your corporate branding guide. Marketing power has historically been solely in the hands of businesses that used their discretion to push out messaging in hopes of getting traction in the marketplace. Today’s social-media-driven world has put this power in the hands of consumers, who are now empowered to forge and mold brand messaging based on their own experiences — both good and bad.
A key concept of social media marketing is telling your authentic brand story in a unique way that reflects your thought leadership, authenticity, and value proposition, and inviting your audience — overtly or via their own experiences with you — to share these messages with their peers and those in their social circles. The only way to solidify who you are and what you have to offer is to create a cohesive social media brand that is dependable, persistent, and steady across every one of your social networks.
5 Reasons Brand Cohesion is Critical in Social Media Marketing
1. It demonstrates professionalism
Implementing a consistent brand shows that you care about your your company, your public image, and your customers.
2. It heightens brand recall
People don’t usually make buying decisions immediately. As I mentioned in a previous post, today’s decision-making process is circular in nature. People form impressions about brands via many touch points and when they decide to make a purchase, those saved impressions become critical in the buying process:
3. It removes brand confusion
Competition is relentless. Chances are good that there are many players in your niche that are all fiercely competing for your audience’s attention — and dollars. If you can’t address your buyers’ concerns and offer them the value they’re looking for, they won’t hesitate to quickly move on to one of your competitors who can. Eliminating confusion through consistent branding — both overt and subliminal — effectively contrasts you versus your adversaries and improves the likelihood that a consumer will buy from you.
4. It separates you from your competitors
You need to stand out from the crowd. Highlighting what you have that your competitors don’t by delivering consistent content and messaging — through imagery, tone, voice, etc. — will help instill your identity in the minds of your customers.
5. It reinforces your brand personality
Customers are more likely to purchase from a brand if its personality is similar to their own. Your brand’s personality is comprised of a set of human characteristics to which consumers can relate. It includes everything you communicate about your brand, from profile photos and cover images to tweets to Facebook posts. Consumers should be able to immediately determine what you’re all about, no matter which platform they’re using.
5 Steps to Creating a Cohesive Social Media Brand
1. Solidify your visual brand identity
Your brand’s visual identity should be consistent across all of your social media marketing platforms. Steady, dependable use of your logo, colors, fonts, etc., helps delineate you in today’s interruptive marketplace and increases customer recognition.
Every message you push out about your brand is impactful. Whether it’s 140 characters on Twitter or a compelling photo on Instagram, each bit of information that you share contributes to your perception in the marketplace. Make sure that it’s very consistent.
3. Plan what and when to post
Is your audience interested in text, videos, links, images, or a combination? Will you curate other content or create your own? When is your audience online? Take all of these factors into consideration and formulate a plan that ensures maximum brand visibility.
4. Create shareable content
Make what you share likeable and inspiring to elicit social media sharing. Shareable, sticky content also enables you to reach beyond your core audience and develop new relationships that engender brand evangelism, growth, and sales.
5. Maintain a consistent brand tone across all of your social media networks
Keep each of your social media channels similar in tone and appearance. Sure, you’ll have to tweak a bit based on each platform’s demographics and culture — but a dependable brand language that is “in character” will drive brand recognition, interaction, and sales.
How to Foster a Cohesive Social Media Brand is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.
15 Fantastic Books on Social Media Marketing
2015-05-16 22:48 UTC by Pam Dyer
Do you want to learn more about social media marketing? You’re not alone.
By now it’s clear that whether you’re promoting a business, a product, or yourself, social media is essential in determining your success or failure. It’s more important than ever to master the essentials of how to attract and retain an audience for your brand. New features are constantly being added to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Pinterest, all of which increase your daily responsibilities as a marketer. Best practices are constantly evolving, and staying up to date with the latest methods can feel overwhelming sometimes.
There are many books out there that purport to teach you everything you need to know about social media marketing. Here are some of the best ones out there — in no particular order — to help you achieve your goals.
15 Must-Read Social Media Marketing Books
Drawing from his experience helping more than 700 brands improve their marketing strategy, Jay Baer provides a groundbreaking plan for using information and helpfulness to transform the relationship between companies and customers.
David Meerman Scott offers examples of success from organizations around the world. He examines newly-popular tools such as infographics and photo-sharing using Pinterest and Instagram, and delivers expanded information on social media such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Jeffrey Rohrs documents the missing piece in today’s content marketing revolution — proprietary audience development. Audiences are valuable business assets, and it’s high time we treated them as such.
4. 500 Social Media Marketing Tips: Essential Advice, Hints and Strategy for Business: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, YouTube, Instagram, LinkedIn, and More
Unlike most educational books, Andrew Macarthy‘s practical layout and concise instructions ensure that you’ll take away something valuable every time you read, whether it’s 5 minutes at your desk, half an hour on your commute, or all day on a weekend.
Seth Godin will make you think (really think) about the opportunities in leading your fellow employees, customers, investors, believers, hobbyists, or readers. . . . It’s not easy, but it’s easier than you think.
With more than 100 practical tips, tricks, and insights, Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick present a bottom-up strategy for creating a focused, thorough, and compelling presence on the most popular social media platforms — from building a foundation to execution.
In this step-by-step guide, Michael Hyatt takes readers behind the scenes into the new world of social media success, and shows you what creative people are doing differently to win customers in today’s crowded marketplace.
8. Likeable Social Media: How to Delight Your Customers, Create an Irresistible Brand, and Be Generally Amazing on Facebook (& Other Social Networks)
David Kerpen gives you the information and tools you need to truly engage your customers and help them spread your message far and wide. He reveals all the secrets to popularizing a brand by being authentic, engaging, and transparent — and teaches you the same methods he used to redefine brands such as 1-800-FLOWERS.com, Neutrogena, Verizon FiOS, and dozens more.
Raising brand awareness, building trust, establishing credibility, and ultimately driving revenue — that’s what the top of the funnel is all about. Jason Miller offers a no-frills approach to practical tactics, strategies, and lessons, all with a touch or rock n roll flare.
10. Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Ignite Your Business
How do you create the stories, videos, and blog posts that cultivate fans, arouse passion for your products or services, and ignite your business? Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman equip you for online success with this resource on the art and science of developing content that people care about.
Too busy to spend hours trying to learn the fundamentals of social media marketing? Mark Schaefer explores the fundamental strategies and answers the biggest questions every business professional needs to answer before diving into a social media initiative.
12. Epic Content Marketing: How to Tell a Different Story, Break through the Clutter, and Win More Customers by Marketing Less
Joe Pulizzi explains how to draw prospects and customers in by creating information and content they actually want to engage with, instead of interrupting them with mediocre content (and sales messages) they don’t care about.
13. Global Content Marketing: How to Create Great Content, Reach More Customers, and Build a Worldwide Marketing Strategy that Works
Technology has virtually erased national borders, forever transforming the way we reach and engage customers, as well as the way we search for and consume content. Pam Didner takes you step-by-step through the process of creating and refining your strategies to meet this new reality.
14. Optimize: How to Attract and Engage More Customers by Integrating SEO, Social Media, and Content Marketing
Lee Odden provides you with the tools necessary to plan, implement, and scale an integrated content marketing strategy to boost your online visibility and relevance with prospects, customers and industry media.
15. Social Media Mastery: 75+ Tips to Help you Expand your Reach, Build your Platform, and Establish your Online Authority
Learn how to establish a social media strategy in line with your goals, organize it all with Evernote, and market your content based on your product, service, or credentials. Fire up your brand via social media, Kindle ebooks, or podcasts using this guide from Tara Ross.
15 Fantastic Books on Social Media Marketing is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.
How to Easily Make Animated GIFs from YouTube Videos
2015-05-02 22:36 UTC by Pam Dyer
Animated GIFs are all the rage.
Chances are that you’ve encountered some of them as you’ve surfed around the Internet. Animated GIFs have been around since 1997. They combine several images into a single file that plays in a loop and conveys quick bursts of brand-related content. Easily sharable, animated GIFs are undergoing a resurgence of late as businesses look for new ways to connect with their audiences and add a new dimension to their social media marketing.
Here are a couple of great examples of brands using animated GIFs to get their message across:
— Pizza Hut (@pizzahut) July 15, 2014
It’s Dead-Simple to Make an Animated GIF from a YouTube Video
Are you using YouTube for marketing? If so, you know that a fantastic video that’s optimized for sharing can jumpstart new product launches and add a cool factor for startups looking to make their mark. Did you know that it’s super easy to make an animated GIF from one of your YouTube videos? Here’s how:
1. Use your browser to locate the video on YouTube that you want to convert to an animated GIF
I’ll be using this video about a Golden Retriever and her puppies:
2. Add GIF” to the beginning of the URL. After “www.” and before “youtube.com”
Here’s what I mean:
Using my example, I’ll use the address bar to turn:
and hit “return”.
3. You will be taken to this configuration window:
- Use the slider select the portion of the video you wish to convert
- Select the duration (up to roughly 15 seconds)
- Add a title
- Click “Create GIF”
Voila! You now have a short clip that you can share on all of your social media platforms!
How to Easily Make Animated GIFs from YouTube Videos is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.
How to Get Started with Instagram Marketing
2015-04-12 00:13 UTC by Pam Dyer
Instagram is a powerful tool for establishing a visual brand identity.
It enables businesses to improve engagement and increase sales by showcasing their products in creative ways and implementing interactive hashtag campaigns. With more than 300 million active users, it is now the most popular photo-sharing social media platform, surpassing Pinterest by more than 250 million. If you haven’t tried Instagram marketing yet, it’s time to get started.
Create a stunning Instagram profile and story
Instagram profiles are minimal. They are limited to 150 characters and are not indexed by search engines. Your story is really told via the use of photos, so make sure you use high-resolution images to grab attention and create engagement. Whether they feature your customers, products, or personality, they need to deliver a clear cohesive message that will resonate with your target audience.
- Decide on a visual theme to represent your brand
- Use your products to tell a story that will interest your audience
- Ensure that your photos provide value to your followers
Here are the latest Instagram profile image dimensions:
Find your audience by researching and listening
Hashtags are the lifeblood of the Instagram community. Hopefully you’re already aware of the hashtags your customers are using. It’s vital to tap into that power to learn how your audience is talking about your products and industry, as well as how your competitors are leveraging the platform for success.
You can search relevant hashtags and follow users who are already engaging with your brand and products, have a large following, and are engaging regularly. Other ways to find followers include using “Find Friends > Suggested Users” and employing Instagram’s messaging system, Instagram Direct.
Make sure you have 5-10 images in your Instagram stream before you begin following people.
Engage and add value to your community
A Forrester study dubbed Instagram the “king of social engagement” and found that the platform blows others away in this area. Their findings indicated that top brands’ Instagram posts generated a per-follower engagement rate of 4.21%. That means Instagram delivered these brands 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook, and 120 times more engagement per follower than Twitter.
Starting conversations with consumers is one of the most valuable aspects of social media marketing, and the previously mentioned Instagram Direct offers that functionality out of the box. Use it to:
- Enable your audience to send customer service questions and product inquiries and receive a visual response from you
- Send customers “thank you” pictures when they make purchases
- Send coupons, press releases, surveys, etc. to your top followers
Be sure to respect your users’ privacy and use these tactics in moderation so you don’t come across as a spammer.
Create your content
To successfully engage on Instagram, you need to contribute.
- Use high-resolution images and a third-party editing app to enhance your images before you upload them to Instagram
- Use a mix of Instagram filters. No filter — i.e. “Normal” — is the most popular filter on Instagram, but “Mayfair” elicits the most interactions.
- The most engagement comes from photos that feature the product in only 2/3 of the picture
Make sure you don’t update too often with redundant pictures. Your goal should be 2-3 new photos per week. You can increase your cadence as you grow your followers.
Tips for raising the profile of your product photos:
- Share your customers’ photos
- Make it easy to purchase your products by including a link to the product page
- Mobile coupon usage continues to climb as the world becomes more digital, so it’s important to provide offers and discounts along with a picture of your product and a reason that people should buy it.
Instagram videos are very popular with brands because they enable more creative storytelling and can generate exponentially more inbound links than written posts. They can be 3-15 seconds long and edited with built-in tools that enable you to apply unique filters. You can also choose your own thumbnail image.
Engage like crazy
Create off-page engagement by liking and commenting on popular photos. @mention both the creator and other commenters.
Engage people on your page by:
- Adding questions in your captions that encourage comments
- Replying to all comments and @mentioning the commenter in your photo
- Running hashtag campaigns through your followers and featuring them in your photos
When to post on Instagram
Posts on Sunday, Monday, and Thursday create the most engagement. Make sure to use a mix of:
- Brand-specific hashtags
- Industry-specific hashtags
- Trending hashtags, e.g. #throwbackthursday
- Use Populagram to find popular hashtags, filters, and people
- Use Websta to find the best hashtags for your posts and more
Leverage your other social networks
One of the best features of Instagram is that it is connected to Facebook, which makes it easy to share content across all of your social media platforms. If your focus on Instagram is product photos, you can embed your stream on your website for maximum exposure.
Reward your Instagram followers
Turn your engagement into brand loyalty by rewarding your most active followers and brand ambassadors.
- Post “first looks” and “previews” of new products and upcoming events
- Offer coupons and contests to incentivize engagement and brand promotion
How to Get Started with Instagram Marketing is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.
9 Awesome Tools for Content Authors and Bloggers
2015-03-22 00:07 UTC by Pam Dyer
Content marketing isn’t easy.
It requires discipline, focus, and a lot of hard work. If you do any kind of writing — blog posts, articles, ebooks, etc. — you know how hard it can be to generate ideas and perfect your text so that morphs into something that’s useful to your audience. Wouldn’t it be great if there were some tools and Web applications that could help with the process?
Congratulations — you’re in luck! From idea generation to improving the quality of your prose, these 9 tools will help you up your game and become a writing ninja.
5 Content Idea Tools
Lack inspiration? It’s not uncommon to find yourself racking your brain for killer content ideas. Here are some tools to jumpstart your creativity:
1. Portent’s Content Idea Generator
Use this tool to come up with an array of titles for your next blog post or presentation. Some are funny. Some are shocking. All useful. [Caution: It’s addictive.]
Enter a keyword or phrase and it will generate a title and also offer tips for improving the content itself:
2. Content Marketing Ideas Generator
Enter a target audience in this tool and what knowledge will benefit them, and be rewarded with 20 content marketing ideas:
3. Hubspot’s Blog Topic Generator
Enter 3 nouns that you’d like to write about and Hubspot’s tool will come up with a week’s worth of relevant blog post titles:
Enter a keyword and Soovle will find the most popular terms across a wide variety of search engines:
5. Google Trends: Hot Searches
This tool visualizes the top 20 trending searches and displays them in a beautiful, full-screen, live animation. Click on a trend and see the related Google search results:
4 Content Improvement Tools
Need to improve the quality of your content? These apps will help you get the job done.
Grammarly makes you a better writer by finding and correcting mistakes in your text:
2. The Readability Test Tool
The Readability Test Tool provides a quick and easy way to test the readability of your work. Enter your URL and it will calculate your content’s accessibility:
Are you trying to avoid business jargon? Unsuck-It is a great tool that identifies alternatives you can use instead:
Hemingway makes your content bold and clear. The app highlights common errors and catches wordy sentences, adverbs, passive voice, and dull, complicated language:
9 Awesome Tools for Content Authors and Bloggers is a post by Pam Dyer on Pamorama | Social Media Marketing Blog. A Forbes Top-25 Forbes Social Media Power Influencer, Pam is strategic marketing leader in Seattle and a major Seahawks fan. Follow her on Twitter at @pamdyer.