Social media is arguably the biggest leap forward in the marketing world in 2009 – it is certainly the most cost-effective leap forward.
The 10 tips below are all free and all things that you should be doing to make social media marketing easy.
However, these only tell you how to communicate, not what to communicate – these tips will help, but what you say is most important.
1. Create a Facebook page for your business/ brand
As you seen on the screenshot crop below you can create a Facebook page for a ‘celebrity, band or business’. If you are looking to promote a brand using social media you should do this.
This feature was added to Facebook a while after it launched, so many businesses have simply set up Facebook profiles as though their brand was a person. Whilst this is not a bad thing to do there are a lot of benefits of creating the page as a celebrity/band/business page, which I will go into later.
2. Create a vanity URL for your Facebook group
This feature was added in around July 2009. Having a vanity URL means that instead of having a long URL for your facebook page full of random numbers such as ( http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/poochandmutt?ref=ts )and letter you have a short URL such as ( http://www.facebook.com/poochandmutt ) , which you can email to people, have in your email signature etc.
To set your vanity URL go to http://www.facebook.com/username/
3. Create a blog
In my opinion blooger.com is better if you want a pure and simple blog, such as the Pooch & Mutt Blog ( http://poochandmutt.blogspot.com/ ) and wordpress.com is better if you want more detail about your company/products/promotion such as ( http://www.bluechipchallenge.co.uk ) and the blog you are reading now.
The benefits of having a blog external to your site is that when you link to your main site to it the links will count as ‘external links’, which will benefit your google rankings. I also assume that creating a blog in blogger.com means that google is more likely to index it quicker, as google owns blogger.com – however this is only an assumptio.
The benefit of having a blog on your own site is that you aree creating more content on your site, giving more people more resons to visit your site.
What to write in your blog is an entirely different subject, but a couple of simple rules are
- 1) Do not just sell sell sell
- 2) Write something that your customers will be interested in and that will help them
- 3) Write something that you thin people will forward to others
- 4) Use your keywords and link them to relevant sections of your main website (if relevant)
4. Create a blog feed
Set up an account with feedburner (www.feedburner.com) – also owned by google. This enables you to do a few things:
- a) Get your blog delivered directly to people’s email for FREE
The below screenshot is taken from www.poochandmutt.com – as you see there is a box on the right of the page where customers can enter their email addresses.
Feedburner provides you with the code to do this in its ‘Publicize’ section – it is very easy to set up
- b) Feed you blog into your site
If you have your blog hosted on a separate site you can use a feedburner feed to have a copy of it on your main site.
For example the Blue Chip feed blog is at www.bluechipchallenge.com (hosted by wordpress.com). However you can read the blog at http://www.bluechipfeed.com/blog.html – Feedburner gives you the code to set this up – all you need to do is put it in your site
- C) Get stats
In Feedburner’s ‘analyze’ section you can see how many people are reading and interacting with your blog – It won’t be many at first, but it will grow!
Feedburner has a load of other great features, but these are in my opinion the most important when starting.
5. Add a Facebook Fan Box to your blog
You can add a simple button to your blog (and to your main website) that peopl can click on to become a Facebook fan, as shown below.
To find out how to do this go to http://wiki.developers.facebook.com/index.php/Fan_Box
6. Import your blog into your Facebook
The simplest way to ensure that you Facebook page has fresh content is to set it to import directly from your blog (assuming you write your blog regularly -if you are not it gives you a good reason to do so).
It is very easy to set your blog so that it automatically publishes within the notes section of your Facebook page – to find out how to do this click here: http://www.insidefacebook.com/2009/02/22/how-to-import-your-blog-into-facebook/
7. Create a Twitter account
Go to twitter.com and set up an account – it is very easy
Although you may not know what to tweet about at first you will learn as you read other people’s tweets.
Twitter is also a very good way to not only what you and your company is doing, what shows you are going to etc, but also what you are putting on your blog, website, facebook etc – driving people to those pages… and you can also set Facebook to automatically tweet to your Twitter account (see below)
8. Create a Hootsuite account
This is not essential, but is very useful.
If you set up a Hootsuite account and Tweet using its URL shortening feature then you can see how many clicks your tweets are getting – which is very useful to know.
9. Add your Twitter updates to your Site/ Blog
Just go to http://twitter.com/badges and follow the very simple instructions.
This can automtcally generate a widget for a blogger blog, as you can see below.
If you click on the other option you can get code for both flash and html widgets – for a beginner I would recommend the html, as less can go wrong
10. Get your Facebook page to Tweet
This is a very new piece of functionality, developed in the last month by an intern at Facebook.
Simply go to http://www.facebook.com/twitter/ and set Facebook to link to twitter – there are options of what you want to tweet, I would recommend that you choose all of them
There you have it.
Now everything is linked, so when you write a blog it will:
- Emailed to your email subscribers
- Published on your website
- Published on Facebook
- Tweeted as new content by Facebook
- The tweet will feature on your site and blog
All you have to do is think about what your customers want to read and what to say on your blog
P.S. Don’t forget to change your email signature to include all your social media, i.e.: