LinkedIn Marketing Tips Every Business Should Know

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network, so having a strong strategy when it comes to tapping into it.  LinkedIn is a successful social media channel for establishing online connections and accelerating business growth.  Want to understand how to use LinkedIn marketing or if it is right for you?  This guide will help you decide and then how to use digital marketing strategies to make the most of it.

Marketing Efforts for B2B

LinkedIn marketing solutions are built to support businesses’ targeted marketing efforts.  B2B marketing is the most successful on this platform.  It is unrivaled when it comes to expanding professional networks and uncovering conversion opportunities.

The opportunities for businesses and professionals are vast and includes

  • Build a brand reputation
  • Increase market visibility
  • Build professional networks
  • Follow industry news, trends, and updates
  • Publish press releases and articles
  • Join highly trafficked groups
  • Gather valuable customer insights

Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile

The first step is about maximizing your Brands LinkedIn Profile.  It is about amplifying your presence.  You want to choose the best profile picture and banner for the business page.  The next step is the content that is on the page.  You want to customize headlines and write a powerful business description that includes relevant keywords.  Build your employees’ profile and customize a LinkedIn page URL.

You want to follow topic-based communities.  These are a great place to build connections with other professionals in the same industry or similar interests.  Within the groups, questions are asked and as an expert, you can then provide invaluable tips and information that will engage.

Content Marketing

Content Marketing is vital for any platform, including LinkedIn.  It is an effective LinkedIn marketing strategy that drives leads and builds online authority.  One successful approach to sharing meaningful content is to write a post with a catchy headline and image and some knowledge on a topic.  Share some brief content that is engaging with a link to the full blog post on your website.  Why?  The content will leave them wanting to learn more and they will then hit your website to get the rest.

If you are unsure what types of posts stick with content that addresses market concerns.  What questions do people interested in your services need help with?  By providing tips to help with pain points, they will be interested and follow.

LinkedIn Pulse

LinkedIn Pulse is an online news feed designed for members to share their content with their target audience.  If generated blog posts and other content from businesses and individuals looking to build their LinkedIn profile and expand their online reach.

A typical post has a 700-character limit for individuals and a 1,300-character limit for company posts, LinkedIn Articles do not have limits.  They can access an article from your company profile or through Google Search.  This specifically gives your brand more visibility and articles to be seen.

Collect and Give Recommendations

Reviews build your brand reputation.  Business pages with recommendations are 3 times more likely to get inquiries through LinkedIn search.  With this in mind, ask employees, associates, and clients to provide endorsements.  Don’t be afraid to ask for it if they have had a positive experience.  Not everyone thinks about LinkedIn reviews.

Advertising on LinkedIn

LinkedIn’s audience has twice the buying power of the average online user.  Its lead conversion rates are 3 times higher than other platforms.  There are several options for paid advertising, for example, sponsored updates, text ads, and sponsored InMail’s.  These ads allow you to deliver your message to a specific audience and direct traffic back to your company page.

InMail has built-in analytics to help you fine-tune your message.  Additionally, it is a powerful way to reach out to prospects and influencers in your audience.

Transform Your Business

LinkedIn is a marketing solution for companies to increase brand interaction and sell to other professionals.  Just like any social media marketing platform, the more active your business is on LinkedIn, the higher the chances of increasing conversions.

If you are still unsure about all of the features or just simply don’t have the time, partnering with a digital marketing agency will get you the reach and results you are looking for.  MaxAudience has been helping companies with their digital marketing strategies.  Let us help you create result-oriented LinkedIn solutions today.

 

The Social Media Marketing Strategy Build Your Brands Instagram Following

The goal of social media marketing is to take your brand to the next level.  Instagram is a powerful channel that can help build brand awareness and a loyal audience.  Here are some social media marketing strategies for building an engaged and growing following on Instagram.

Why Use Instagram?

Brands find that by using Instagram effectively they can

  • Reach out to potential customers and connect with them.
  • Nurture relationships with existing customers.
  • Work the potentials through the sales funnel.

The First Step Who is Your Audience?

Before we go into depth about how to increase followers, content, and details.  It is important to understand who your target audience is.  AS a digital marketing agency this is the step where we work with our clients to determine the demographic of people that are most interested in the product or service.  You want them to relate to your posts, the tone, the content, and the images.

Posting Times

Getting your content seen by as many people as possible is important with Instagram marketing.  You want the exposure, but you want comments, shares that lead to more followers.  While there are many places that give the global best times to post it will take a little time to find what times your audience prefers.

Check your Instagram insights feature, and it will give you information about your audience.  You will be able to see what days and times they are on, age range, gender, and location.  Once you look at the stats, it will let you know when your followers are online so that you can post at the same time.

Consistency and Relevant Content

As a brand, you need to post consistently on social media, so that you stay top of mind, and they understand the brand better.  Not only is it about creating consistent content, but it also needs to be relevant content.  You want to give your followers valuable content.  This increases the chance of them sharing your content with their followers.  The strategy is about balancing between gaining new followers and retaining your existing ones too.

Social Media Hashtags

Leveraging the power of social media hashtags partners with relevant and consistent content.  Using relevant hashtags makes it easy for your target audience to find your content.  The goal with hashtags is not to go crazy but use pertinent hashtags that will reach new people.  When done correctly, it can get your brand lots of exposure.

The hashtags should describe what your brand is about and resonate with what your target audience is searching for.  Doing keyword research is important to do before just posting anything.  There are several types of hashtags that you want to research, trending, popular, branded, and location hashtags.

  • Trending – You may want to add trending hashtags to your content from time to time, to not only gain followers but to show you are current. It is best to use trending hashtags that are in your niche, not just to be trendy and have nothing to do with your brand.
  • Popular – These hashtags don’t always make a difference in how your content ranks on Instagram. They are hard to leverage because there is so much competition.
  • Branded – This is when you use the name of your brand or company. Companies use branded hashtags, over 70% of Instagram hashtags are branded.
  • Location – If you are targeting local customers to your business then geotags are a must.

Engage with Your Followers

With any good social media marketing strategy, you must remember to engage with your audience.  You will need to have a system to answer questions on your posts.  If they comment, you want to reply within a reasonable amount of time.  Brands that have the best followings are ones that care about their audience.  This is not something that can be bought.  The connection is where you gain their trust.

It’s Time to Start

Building your following on Instagram will not happen overnight, however, by utilizing the tools you will be able to grow your brand and gain a real audience.  Start with these tips and then incorporate others like influencers, giveaways, and videos.

If you are overwhelmed or still not sure about all the points mentioned in this article, then you may want to consider working with a digital advertising agency that has a proven track record in social media marketing.

Facebook Offers New Local Advertising Option

The marketing emails hit inboxes throughout the country this morning, as Facebook announces the launch of a Local Ad service. This is part of what the company is terming ‘the local awareness objective’. It is aimed specifically at those groups and organizations operating brick and mortar operations, and those providing services to a local audience. They are considering it the most effective manner of reaching out to a local niche online, arguing that the companies utilizing the service will have access to huge audiences for a very small budget. Furthermore, integration of a ‘get directions’ option allows the Facebook user to receive detailed instructions on how to get from his or her current location to the advertised company.

It appears to be very straightforward, providing a very smooth, user-friendly experience. Choose a budget, upload a photo, and write up a short, enticing message and you are on your way to great local advertising.

The aspect of this local approach to social advertising that we really appreciate is the fact that is focuses more on reach and less on clicks. Though the click through rate will remain an important metric for the vast majority of social marketing campaigns, in this case, the advertising is more about basic exposure. The more times a person within your local niche sees you ad, the more likely he or she is to recognize your brand when in need of a product or service that you have to offer. In the service description, Facebook representatives suggest:

99% of the people who saw a Facebook ad, and then bought the product in the store didn’t click on the ad

It makes sense. With Facebook placing so much emphasis on reach, as opposed to CTR, companies will have the opportunity to focus more attention on brand awareness, which is more important for those who are hoping to improve in-store sales with online advertising.

How to Use Influencers in Your Social Media Marketing Strategy

Social media marketing is about creating trust and personal connections with your followers.  Social media marketing and branding fall hand in hand.  Branding is about speaking your audience’s language, choosing the best platforms for your products, and where your target audience is.  This is where social media influencers come in, they connect with their audience and they have the trust of their followers.

Influencer marketing is a great way to help you reach new audiences, create brand awareness, and boost your ROI and bottom line.

What is Influencer Marketing?

Influencer marketing is a strategy that brands use to promote their products and services by partnering with social media users or bloggers.  Influencers have a large audience that engages with them and values their opinion.  Brands can tap into their network, build credibility, and drive sales.

Celebrities are a great example of this when a celebrity is wearing or using a brand or product it becomes a hot commodity.  However, there are a number of influencers of all sizes online and throughout niches that a business can work with.

The Benefits of Partnering with an Influencer

Think of influencers as word-of-mouth marketing online.  These are just some benefits by using influencers as part of your social media marketing strategy.

  • Reach a bigger audience
  • Build trust for your brand
  • Grow your social following
  • Increase site traffic
  • Get more leads
  • Drive sales

First Develop Measurable Goals

Before contacting influencers, you want to approach this social media marketing strategy with a plan.  Are you trying to grow your audience in a specific region or demographic?  Are you trying to promote a specific product?  Who Is your target?

Measurable goals will help both you and your influencer tailor your approaches.  It will also help you define what influencers will be best for your strategy.  Not all influencers offer the same audience, and there are different levels of influencers.

  • Mega Influencer – With more than 1 million followers, these are typically celebrities who are famous without social media.
  • Macro Influencer – There following in between 100,000 and 1 million. They have often gained their following through social media.  They typically specialize in a specific product area.
  • Micro-Influencer – They have fewer than 100,000 followers but are highly engaged and when they recommend their followers are going to follow.
  • Nano Influencer – With less than 5,000 followers, but they have a higher-user engagement like Micro-influencers. This category is down to earth relatable content.

Depending on your goals, and your budget, you will need to take into account which level of influence fits with your brand, and product or service.

How to Find Influencers

Once you have figured out the details of your marketing plan and the king of influencer that will best fit your strategy, you can use a service.  There are many influencer databases that can help you find social media influencers in specific niches.

Many brands also look to see if they have loyal customers that are posting on their social media already.  Then they check to see if there are influencers who are tagging them and loving their product.

Collaboration and Maintaining the Relationship

There are many details within the budget and pricing per engagement post, videos, content, and how often.  These are all varied depending on the influencers that you are hiring and the products or services that you are promoting.  The specifics will vary.  However, it is all about maintaining these relationships with the influencers.  If you are still unsure about your social media marketing plan and if an influencer strategy will work for your brand, contact us today.  We are ready to help you boost your ROI and increase your bottom line.

Take Your Live Video and Turn it Into a Marketing Asset

Live videos offer immediate real-time insight in a way that text, social posts, and blogs can’t achieve.  Video content whether it is live or not is a valuable asset for a brand.  Once you host a live video, webinar or zoom, there are some great marketing strategies to get the most out of your content.  Videos are a surefire way of increasing brand awareness and customer engagement.  You can create a series and it helps your content rank in searches.  Here are some ways to turn your video into a marketing asset.

Replay

Save the video for replay.  As soon as the live broadcast stops, make sure it’s available for replay.  There is never a perfect time to schedule your videos, replay makes it available to get more viewers.

  • Facebook – On Facebook, before you go live, you are asked what you would like to post your video clip after it ends. Once the live video is over and the video is saved and shared, you can edit and re-post as a featured video.  This means that it will appear at the top of your video section, so it is easy to find.
  • YouTube – When you finish going live on YouTube, your footage is automatically uploaded to your channel.
  • Zoom – You can record your zoom webinar and then upload it. The best way we have found is that you load to your YouTube channel and share it from there.  It may not be the question-and-answer portion however the conversation or teaching that the brand is doing in the beginning.

Video Helps Grow Your Social Following

Live videos and the replays are a great way to grow your social media following.  By having followers share your video and your page.  It can increase your broadcast a hundredfold overnight.

All of your videos should be uploaded to YouTube.  It creates a library so that if someone is loving what you share, they can go and watch as many videos as they want.

Cross-Promote on Social Platforms

Instagram and Facebook make cross-promoting straightforward.  In the settings, you can choose to automatically share your broadcasts with one another.

If your video is on YouTube just click on the share icon below your video and select to share on your social profiles.

Turn Live Videos into Snippets

Turning your live video into a snippet is a great marketing tool.  These videos can be used to create social media posts to then entice them to go back and watch the replay.  Snippets are easier to watch online and are a good introduction to a brand new follower.  It gives them a short clip to learn about your brand without a commitment.

With a snippet, you have the power to edit and make the clip look sharp and add text.  While live video followers are forgiving about pauses and video quality, a snippet should have some editing to look and be a great piece of video.

These snippets are great to put together and post on your website.  Videos on websites help with your Google SEO rankings.

Custom Thumbnails

When your live video saves to your social profile, a thumbnail is automatically chosen for you.  It may not always be the best or most flattering frame.  These will not pull in any interest from someone who comes across it.

You can change the thumbnail and choose a frame from your footage.  Pick a thumbnail that is riveting and draws a potential follower in.  It needs to be visually appealing.

Blog Posts, Email Campaigns with Your Video

Your live content is great content for other marketing platforms.  In a blog, you can choose to feature the entire video or chop it into segments.  The transcription of the video can be the blog text or you can write about the topic addressed in the video and embed it.

Videos make for great email content.  You can insert your thumbnail and share the link to the video on YouTube, or your blog, wherever you want them to go to.  Have the video fit within the context of your email campaign and call to action (CTA).

Comments and Questions are a Gold Mine

Collect all the comments and questions during your live video, and on the livestream.  They are a gold mine to give you ideas for social media posts, other videos, blogs, and website content.  These questions help you find out what your potential customers need help with.  You can also answer with links to further information to help guide them through the sales funnel.

How Social Media Marketing Can Benefit Your Business

Social media transcends through almost every aspect of our daily lives- work, politics, breaking news, and more.  Activity is higher than ever before. Marketing through social media is one of the most versatile and cost-effective strategies that businesses can use to reach their target audience and boost sales over time. Here are some ways that social media marketing can benefit your business.

Your Customers are on Social Media

70% of the U.S. population has at least one social media profile.  Which means that your customers are most likely on social media.  With so many consumers using social media every day, it presents a great opportunity for businesses who want to reach their online audience.

Connecting with your target audience is easy if you are active on the same social media channels that they are.  Go to your audience and find them.

Social Media is Fun

Users are active on social media platforms as they offer a fun and easy way to network, keep in touch with friends and family, and to stay connected.  Social media users are also following and interacting with their favorite brands.  Users will follow brands that have good and enjoyable content.

Social media marketing is about being conversational and showing a different side of your brand.  The content contributes to your brand personality and help you demonstrate your brand voice.  On social media, you are able to make authentic connections with your leads, versus just delivering marketing messages like a television commercial.

Think about doing Q&A’s on Instagram stories, the brand really gets to what their customers’ needs and wants are.  It is about getting personal and having fun with customers.

Blow Away Your Competition with Brand Recognition

Brand recognition is a huge benefit of social media marketing.  By posting compelling content that adds value for your target audience, you are making it more familiar to new leads and reinforcing it with your current customers.

Get Traffic to Your Website

Your social profiles provide yet another way to get more inbound traffic to your website.  Social media marketing an excellent strategy to complement your SEO (search engine optimization) efforts.  With each piece of content that you post, you can link it back to your website.

The best strategy is to publish quality, engaging content.  Consistency is the second big piece to getting traffic from your social media channel to your website.  The more content that you post, the more opportunities you have to engage new leads and direct them back to your website.  Make sure that your website is optimized for conversions.

Audience Demographics

Each social media channel has a specific demographic that uses it more.  Think about your target audience demographics, the more details the better.  Knowing these details will help you not only in creating content, but which platforms to post on.

A Cost-Effective Marketing Solution

You can get quality results with social media marketing without the high price.  Most of your social media will cost you in investing time creating and publishing content.  As well as engaging with your audience through conversations.  By investing a few hours a week, you can have significant results.  It is all about the planning and strategy, when that is in place, it makes it more efficient.

Tips to Build a Better Social Media Marketing Strategy

Has your business cultivated your brand on social media?  Is it a thriving social media presence?  Having a social media marketing strategy can drive growth for your business by creating lasting relationships with prospects and customers.

Identify Your Audience

Understanding who your audience is a major factor in all of your business strategies and campaigns.  Not everyone is your audience.  Understand who your target personas are.

Choose the Right Networks

There are so many social media platforms, that you need to choose the right ones.  Choosing the right ones comes down to your audience.  Where they are and what your goals are.

  • Facebook – This platform is ideal for businesses that want to generate leads and build relationships.
  • Instagram – This image-based platform is powerful to expand a brand’s presence and visibility of products and services.
  • LinkedIn – A platform that is perfect for business networking. It can be used by both B2B and B2C businesses to create trust, build authority, and engage audiences.
  • Pinterest – is a fantastic platform for businesses with visual appeal. It is great for driving sales because so many users look to the site to plan purchases.

Create A Social Media Marketing Strategy

Understanding that you need to improve your social media presence is the start, but it is only the beginning.  You will need to create a content calendar that will help you plan your posts and the frequency.  The content calendar should specify.

  • Who is your audience?
  • What topics and subjects your audience is interested in.
  • What kind of content will you need to create?
  • When and what platforms content will be published.

Content Creation

Being very clear about who your audience is will determine what type of content you should be sharing and how to engage your followers.  What are their likes, pain points, challenges, and needs?

Your content needs to be of high quality and relevant.  Content is king and people are looking for great content.  They are not looking for selling; they are looking for help.  When they find it, they will reward you with their business.

Engagement

It is not enough to just post great content, a social media marketing strategy is about the connection and engagement.  That is the only way to foster the relationships that you want to build and gain trust with.  Here are some ways that you can engage with your audience.

  • Commenting on posts
  • Participating in conversations
  • Sharing relevant information
  • Sharing user-generated content
  • Asking and answering questions
  • Showing appreciation to users

Consistency

It takes time and patience to cultivate a relationship with a potential customer, and it is the same for social media.  You will need to post consistently and monitor your channels.  You need to respond to questions and conversations.

While this sounds time-consuming, it is important, and you can use automation tools to help minimize the time you have to dedicate.

Posting frequency depends on the platform you are using.

Social media is ideal for brand building and recognition, so it is crucial that every post you make is in line with your image.  Having a consistent look and feel is key.

What Does Your Social Media Presence Look Like?

There are tactics and strategies that can help you build toward social accounts that prime for engagement.  The tips outlined above are the start of building your social media marketing strategy and get your brand out in the lead.

Comparing and Contrasting the Top Social Media Platforms, Part II

In the last blog post, we looked at three of the top seven social media platforms, comparing and contrasting their strengths and weaknesses.  There are still four others, however, that you may want to consider using to give your brand a boost online.

The remaining four platforms are:

  1. YouTube
  2. LinkedIn
  3. Google+
  4. Pinterest

YouTube On a steady rise for quite some time now, YouTube has millions of regular users and has set itself apart from the rest for the social media platforms by focusing exclusively on video.  Video also happens to be one of the biggest tools for marketers right now.  There is no need for potential customers to follow you in order for them to discover your videos, which can mean a farther reach with each new piece of content.  Unfortunately, it can be difficult to get people to watch your videos through to the end, which means that each and every piece of shared content on this platform needs to engage the audience within the first few seconds.  It also tends to be an expensive platform, in that the creation of quality video is much more time consuming and costly than written content or photographs.

LinkedIn For B2B operations, especially, LinkedIn remains a powerhouse for marketing and networking purposes.  The audience is more limited on this site, and it hasn’t proven as effective for B2C companies.  It is also more difficult to properly target ads on this platform.

Google+ For SEO purposes, Google+ carries great weight for many marketers.  Obviously, being Google owned makes this a preferred social networking platform for the Google spiders being sent out to learn more about your company.  The social platform is also convenient for the fact that it integrates so nicely with other Google products, such as Gmail and Google Docs.  The downside is the fact that this platform never achieved the footing that it had been expected to capture.  It may simply be because it is too similar to Facebook, so people don’t feel the need to use both.  Less market share makes it less appealing for marketers.

Pinterest Some argue that this platform is on its way out.  It is clear that Instagram stole some of Pinterest’s thunder, but for certain industries, this platform still holds great value.  If you need evidence of this, just consider how many brides-to-be still visit Pinterest on a regular basis.  DIYers are also big fans.

Choosing the perfect platform for your company may not be possible.  Each has its pros and cons, but understanding the strengths and weaknesses of each can help you better select the one-, two-, or three platforms that will best serve your brand.