4 Podcasts Every Entrepreneur MUST Listen To
The life of an entrepreneur is definitely not an easy one. Whether you’re leading a blossoming business or running a side hustle, there’s a huge learning curve to paving your own path. Thankfully, there are an abundance of tools available to help entrepreneurs find success (this site included ).
Business-oriented podcasts are one of the greatest resources out there. Their content can provide great insight into business news and entrepreneurial best practices, not to mention the fact that they’re super easy to consume on-the-go. Instead of perusing through the thousands of business podcasts out there, here’s a round-up of some of our favorites:
By Gary Vaynerchuk
If you aren’t familiar with Gary Vaynerchuk and his unfiltered approach to business, you’re seriously missing out. Vaynerchuk is an entrepreneur, bestselling author, speaker, marketer, social media celebrity, and the list goes on. His podcast is an exact reflection of his many ventures. As a result, you’ll hear about everything from motivational life advice to personal branding how-tos. Vaynerchuk also regularly hosts Reddit AMAs through his podcast. So if you ever wondered about his thoughts on pretty much anything, there’s a chance to find out.
By Drew Neisser
Every business needs a solid marketing strategy to get off the ground. Renegade Thinkers Unite will help you do just that. In each episode, Drew Neisser, CEO of social marketing agency Renegade (and publisher of this site!), interviews marketing innovators about the secret to their success. The conversations are both engaging and informative, with each talk wrapping up with a summary of insights for listeners to take away. Past guests have included seasoned marketing veterans from incredible companies like Spotify, IBM, and The New York Times.
3. HBR IdeaCast
By Harvard Business Review
If there’s anyone in the world qualified to give business advice, it must be the folks over at Harvard, right? Harvard Business Review has been the premier publication for business insights for almost a century. Unsurprisingly, the associated podcast is just as informative. You’ll hear from leading thinkers in business and management about what their own experiences have taught them and how you can apply these lessons to your business. Previous episodes have featured industry titans like Jeff Bezos and innovative thinkers like Maya Angelou.
By Nick Loper
If a full-time gig is limiting your entrepreneurial spirit, this is the podcast for you. The Side Hustle Show explores the actionable tips and business strategies of successful entrepreneurs. Each episode covers a different facet of the part-time entrepreneurial experience, from coming up with a business idea to building marketing initiatives to efficiently budgeting time on a side hustle. Best of all, the advice offered is practical and can be applied to whatever step your part-time business is at.
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June 28, 2017 at 09:29AM
4 LinkedIn Mini Case Studies
Wondering what other businesses are doing with LinkedIn?
In this article, you’ll discover how four different companies sustain a successful LinkedIn presence and find tips for building a presence to engage your own audience.
#1: Focus on Employee Experiences and Job Opportunities
With more than 900,000 LinkedIn followers, Disney is one of the top brands on the platform. So how does an entertainment company that’s more suited for networks like Facebook and Instagram attract such a large LinkedIn audience? They share content that only LinkedIn users enjoy.
If you visit Disney’s LinkedIn page, you’ll find that the content they share is mostly about their employees and the business side of Disney. For example, in the article shared below, the housekeeping director of the Grand Floridian explains how she and her team provide first-class service to guests.
In addition to interesting employee activities, Disney posts about the latest jobs available and shares tips and quotes from employees, such as this one from a technology solutions manager.
Promoting employees is effective because according to LinkedIn, employees are 70% more likely to engage with your updates than non-employees. If you publicly display how proud and happy you are that your employees work for you, they’ll return the favor with likes, shares, and comments that increase your visibility on LinkedIn. Even when Disney advertises job vacancies, they praise employees.
To maintain a business focus on LinkedIn, Disney shares details about business or product performance. For instance, this update includes a link to an article on how well Disney movies performed at the box office. This way, they only share content that covers the business side of things.
Disney knows that creating a social media marketing strategy for each social media platform is important. The content on Disney’s main Facebook page or Instagram account is very different from the LinkedIn content. On Facebook and Instagram, the company directly promotes Disney movies and other entertaining content because their target audience on those platforms is very different from LinkedIn.
#2: Share Product-Centric Content
IBM has grown quickly by sharing compelling content about topics relevant to products, including cutting-edge subjects like artificial intelligence (AI). IBM shares content like this post from the IBM Cognitive Business blog on Medium. The article shares IBM CEO Ginny Rometty’s thoughts about AI in the workforce and guiding principles that can help developers overcome fears.
When IBM posts about topics important to the business, they also share content from a variety of sources. For example, other posts on the topic of cognitive computing include a guest article that Senior Vice President for IBM’s Watson and Cloud Platform David Kenny wrote for VentureBeat. Kenny reiterates Rometty’s thoughts about guidelines and highlights how IBM benefits oncologists.
Because an important IBM product uses cognitive computing, these LinkedIn posts not only help IBM share their leaders’ thinking about AI, but also attract a relevant audience that engages with their posts and buys their products.
When IBM posts content on LinkedIn, the posts are designed to maximize engagement. IBM often creates image posts with a separate link and makes sure a relevant image accompanies the link. According to data LinkedIn has shared, images have a 98% higher comment rate and links can double engagement.
To make sure your image is effective, upload a catchy, relevant image file when you post a link instead of relying on a thumbnail from the website to automatically load.
If you want positive results like IBM’s, start by creating and sharing a lot of relevant content that demonstrates your expertise and that your target audience will like. When you share content created by others, use the @ symbol to tag the creator. LinkedIn allows you to tag both profiles and pages, and doing so will help your page build a stronger network.
#3: Highlight Customer Satisfaction
With more than 420,000 followers, UPS is another popular brand on LinkedIn. The UPS content stands out by focusing on formats and topics that perform well on the LinkedIn platform. For instance, UPS shares a lot of videos like this one of surprising children with tiny trucks. LinkedIn says that videos can increase share rate by 75%.
UPS creates many of these videos themselves. By doing so, UPS benefits from engagement on its other relevant social media accounts. To illustrate, the tiny truck video is getting video views and shares on YouTube, as well as LinkedIn.
When UPS posts links instead of videos, they often add a photo with some text, such as this interesting statistic about warehousing and distribution (topics important to their business). The attractive designs and professional photos stand out well in the LinkedIn news feed.
UPS also shares customer testimonials on LinkedIn. Testimonials and case studies have always been influential in converting customers. People trust customers who aren’t affiliated with your company in any way, and their endorsement can help you win more business.
UPS takes advantage of testimonials by posting pleasant experiences from customers, like this one that includes a photo of a happy customer, the employee who helped the customer, and a quote from the customer.
Posts about social good are often connected to topics that people care about and UPS posts often about environmental sustainability. This topic connects directly to UPS because, as a delivery service, they use a lot of packaging material and fuel. Therefore, it’s nice of them to inform their customers that they’re doing their bit to save the environment.
For example, when Upworthy ran a story about UPS using bikes to deliver packages, UPS shared the story with their LinkedIn followers. Environmentally conscious customers will now be more likely to use UPS for their deliveries.
Your LinkedIn page can also generate fantastic results like UPS if you share a lot of video content and create original images for your other posts. You should also share photos and testimonials from your happy customers. If you’re doing some social good, make sure you share it on LinkedIn. People like companies that are altruistic.
#4: Dive Deep Into Niche Topics
BlackRock is a financial services company that invests on behalf of clients. BlackRock’s LinkedIn page has more than 330,000 followers, and in 2015, generated $17 to $18 million in revenue from LinkedIn.
BlackRock shares a lot of content about their industry: investment. Most of this content is from their own blog. This strategy works because instead of sharing the same old content everyone has written a thousand times, BlackRock focuses on advanced topics like non-traditional asset classes.
Like BlackRock, you should make a habit of creating content your audience really needs instead of writing about the same old stuff. You can easily figure out what your audience needs with a quick survey and a persona. After that, make sure you share that content on your LinkedIn page and groups.
These four brands are thriving on LinkedIn. You too can achieve immense levels of success like them if you use proven tactics and experiment with different content until you find what connects with your LinkedIn audience.
All of these companies share a lot of content in the form of videos, images, and links to blog posts. They also take steps to engage their employees. All of these strategies increase LinkedIn engagement and can help you build a stronger relationship with your employees and customers, both online and offline.
What do you think? Have any of these tactics worked for you? Have these tips helped you consider how you post content on LinkedIn? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
June 28, 2017 at 05:07AM
Twitter has a new VP of inclusion and diversity
A few months after Jeffrey Siminoff left his position as VP of diversity and inclusion at Twitter, the company has brought on Candi Castleberry Singleton to lead Twitter’s diversity efforts.
Castleberry Singleton previously founded the Dignity & Respect Campaign, and formerly led diversity and inclusion efforts at Motorola.
Twitter’s latest diversity report showed the company was making some progress around the hiring of underrepresented minorities. In the last year or so, Twitter’s high-profile appointment of Debra L. Lee, chairman and CEO of BET Networks, as well as the hiring of Jayanta Jenkins, the company’s global group creative director, helped the company reach its goal of having six percent or more underrepresented minorities in leadership roles, which includes people at the director level and above.
Overall, Twitter is 57% white, 32% Asian, 3% black, 4% Hispanic/Latinx, 3% multi-racial, less than one percent American Indian and Native Hawaiian in the U.S. and 37% female worldwide, up from 34% in 2015.
I’ve reached out to Twitter and will update this story if I hear back.Featured Image: DragojaGagiTubic / iStock Editorial / Getty Images Plus
via Twitter – TechCrunch https://techcrunch.com
June 27, 2017 at 03:52PM
Twitter suspends The Fader's account and a handful of other music blogs
Twitter has suspended accounts of music lifestyle/news publication The Fader along with several other music-centric blogs.
On Tuesday morning, Twitter users began posting the hashtag #FreeFader to show support for the publication and confusion about the account's absence on the social platform. As the day went on, other sites such as 2DOPEBOYZ, Hip Hop N More, and Pigeons and Planes -- a publication owned by Complex -- also revealed their accounts had been suspended.
Twitter declined to comment on individual accounts, for privacy and security reasons, but The Verge noted they likely have something to do with copyrighted footage or music of last Sunday's BET Awards or Monday's NBA Awards, that was tweeted from the accounts.
In a comical video tweeted from Complex’s official account, John Walaszek, a writer at Pigeons and Planes, claimed the suspension was due to the fact that he "used a song in a meme without expressed written consent from a label."
Meanwhile, fans of The Fader were hashtagging away in an effort to get the site's account unblocked, sharing what they love about the publication and questioning how other, more offensive users still remain free to tweet.
And as for the folks in charge of The Fader's social media? They seem eager to get back to work.
The sites aren't the first to be shut down for copyright-related issues, if that is indeed the reason they were shut down. Back in 2015, Twitter suspended accounts for sports publications like Deadspin and SBNation for copyright violations, and again in 2017 for sharing NFL GIFs. Both accounts have since been restored.
More recently, Twitter permanently banned "pharma bro" Martin Shkreli from its site after he violated the platform's harassment policy by targeting Teen Vogue editor Lauren Duca.
Hopefully The Fader's Twitter suspension will be temporary, but until it's back up you spend some time enjoying these old fashioned things called websites.
Mashable reached out to Twitter, The Fader, Pigeons and Planes, 2DOPEBOYZ, and Hip Hop N More for comment.
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June 27, 2017 at 02:57PM
Going Viral: 3 Strategies For Advanced Video Storytelling
Digital video is no longer an advanced marketing technique in itself – anyone with a phone can make a video. No, as more sites feature video content, the goal of such videos needs to shift from basic communication to virality, or at least something like it. The more compelling the story and the higher quality the production, the better your odds of going viral, but you’ll need the right supporting tools.
Not sure how to shift your content from average to advanced? These 3 strategies can help you compete with mainstream commercial content on a digital budget.
Learn The Tools
Though you can make digital video content with just a phone or your webcam and post them online, for high quality content you’ll need to take things up a notch – otherwise, you’re just running an Instagram story. For example, a basic program like Adobe Spark can help make basic images look more polished and even YouTube offers video editing software, and anyone can access these for free. These tools are fine for upgrading your landing page, but they won’t take your content viral.
More advanced tools, like WeVideo’s subscription service, offer green screen technology, picture in picture, and more – and these tools will really make the difference in your content styling. At one time, only professional video producers had access to these tools. Now, with the democratization of video technology, you need to make use of them.
Plenty of people make quality videos that don’t go viral while in other cases low production value clips explode; what makes the difference? Typically, the answer has to do with the storyline.
Storytelling is a craft and it takes time and effort to do it well. If you want to make a successful marketing video, one of the best things you can do is study storylines that have worked well and compare them to similar narratives that failed to take off. The differences are often subtle, so you have to pay attention to the nuances.
Consider, for example, these two “transformation” videos, one of which went viral and one of which garnered little attention. Both tell stories of disabled veterans regaining mobility.
The first video, featuring Arthur, succeeded using an emotional narrative and quick pacing; it reengaged the viewer every few seconds in the story being told. It’s a solution-oriented video, something that all viewers, even those in drastically different situations, find compelling. The second video, centered on Derek’s story, on the other hand, moves too slowly and focuses heavily on Derek’s past. It lacked many of the relatable touches of Arthur’s video, even though the production values were higher.
Consider this comparison a demonstration of a universal rule: storytelling skill determines virality. Without mastering the pacing, narrative, and emotional aspects that underpin a good story, your video won’t be successful.
Consider The Psychology
As you can see in the video comparison above, there’s a significant emotional factor at play in which video succeeds – the more relatable figure produces a higher impact video – but there are other psychological factors at play. For example, don’t try to go viral by dissing your competitors. Most people associate viral content with positive feelings, while hardly anyone ties negative emotions to popular posts. Other emotions that rank highly are surprise, admiration, and hope.
Another psychological factor that can play well into a successful viral campaign is a Hollywood-style narrative series. This creates a sense of continuity and investment that brings viewers back again and again. If you can gain traction with the first video using surprise and then offer a cliffhanger, you have a readymade audience that will just keep growing.
Whatever the center of your marketing campaign, virality is contingent on factors ranging from production to emotions – and you don’t need all of them for a campaign to succeed. Ultimately, success starts at the core of your story. An honest, engaging story will take your content to the next level.
The post Going Viral: 3 Strategies For Advanced Video Storytelling appeared first on Social Media Explorer.
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June 27, 2017 at 09:40AM
How to Easily Edit Video: A Simple Guide
Looking for a powerful tool to keep video production costs down?
Whether you’re publishing video to your vlog, blog, or social media, editing your footage helps you present a consistent experience to your viewers.
In this article, you’ll discover how to edit your video content with a free tool so you don’t break your budget.
#1: Start Your Video Project
Note: While this article uses HitFilm Express to illustrate the editing workflows, the tactics I share can be transferred to just about any video editor with an adjustment for interface differences.
HitFilm Express works on both PC and Mac. It’s free and there are no watermarks, file size restrictions, or length limitations. To download and install the software, head to http://ift.tt/1f1kNil and click Let’s Do This and then Get HitFilm Express Free.
You’ll have to share a link to the software on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+ to get the download link. After you’ve completed your share, follow the on-screen instructions to install the software on your machine.
When you first open HitFilm, you see the home screen.
To start a new project, click New in the upper-left corner of the screen.
Now you need to choose your project settings. The default settings are fine, but if you’re a bit more advanced, you can play around with the other settings.
One cool option is that you can create square videos. Just select the Instagram template from the drop-down list.
The square option is great for creating videos for Instagram specifically, but it can also work well on platforms like Facebook and Twitter, where users often view videos in portrait mode on their mobile devices.
After you choose your project settings, click Start Editing.
#2: Import Your Media Files
The editor may look a little confusing at first, but once you know your way around, it’s pretty easy to use.
To add your files, click the Import button on the Media tab (in the lower-left corner of the screen) or simply drag and drop your files.
All of the files you imported will appear on the Media tab.
#3: Trim Footage and Add It to the Timeline
Now click the video file you want to edit first. It will open in the Trimmer section in the top-left corner of the screen.
In the Trimmer section, drag the slider to scrub through the raw video. Use the In and Out buttons to select which parts of the video you want to use.
After you’ve selected your in and out times, drag that portion of the video to your timeline in the lower-right corner of the screen. While editing your file in the Trimmer first isn’t always necessary, it’s helpful if you want to work with only a small scene in a long raw video file.
Important note: You may see the pop-up below. If your imported video is a different quality from the video size you selected in Project Settings, click Yes to make sure everything matches up.
#4: Build Your Video in the Timeline
Your timeline makes up your video and once you have footage in your timeline, you can play your video in the Viewer at the top right.
You’ll notice the video and audio are split into different “tracks” on the timeline. This allows you to layer footage and images on top of each other, and edit the audio and video separately if needed.
Edit Individual Tracks
Once you have footage in the timeline, you can edit it from there, too. If you want to trim the starts and ends off each clip, for example, click and drag in from the left or right.
If you want to create a “jump cut”-style video where you edit out pauses, use the Slice tool, shown below.
To delete part of a clip (as shown below), select the Slice tool and click the beginning and end of the portion you want to cut. Then click the Select tool (the arrow icon), click the clip you want to cut, and press Delete on your keyboard.
Finally, drag the footage back together. Notice how HitFilm snaps footage together to make it even easier.
To make your editing as accurate as possible, use the Zoom feature. It lets you zoom into your timeline so you can see exactly where the cut needs to be.
Don’t worry about making mistakes. Open the super-handy History tab to undo any edits you’ve made.
Add Files to the Timeline
To add another media file to your project, drag a clip from your media library so it appears above your original video file in the timeline (audio files go below).
Using the Viewer in the top right, you can resize and reposition to change how the files look in the finished video. If you set start and end points in the timeline, you can see when the new tracks begin and end.
If you want to get a bit fancier and have new tracks or scenes transition on-screen, open the Effects tab. Pick one of the available transitions, and drag and drop it onto the timeline at the start of the clip you’d like to transition.
Add Text to Your Video
The final technique I want to cover is how to add text. On the Media tab, click the New button and select Composite Shot from the drop-down menu.
In the dialog box that opens, give your composite shot a name and click OK.
In the Viewer, you can now create your own composite shot. To add text to it, click the Text icon.
Then draw a text box and type your text into it. When you’re finished, highlight the text you added.
In the lower-left corner of the screen, open the Text tab (to the right of the History tab). You can edit the colors, fonts, and point size, and use any fonts you’ve installed on your computer.
When you’re happy with the text you added, click to return to the Editor tab.
Your new composite shot is now listed along with your other media files. Just as you would do with any image, drag and drop your new composite shot onto your timeline.
Pro Tip: Edit by Sound
When you’re editing video, a big time-waster can be watching your video over and over to find the bits to cut out. A good filmmaking practice for avoiding this is to make a noise (often a loud double clap) while recording to signify which take was the best.
For example, suppose you mess up a line three times but get it right the fourth time. If you double clap immediately after the fourth time, that sound will show up as a peak in your audio that you can use as a guide to cut the other three takes without having to watch them.
Interesting fact: Using this method, a lot of editors actually edit their videos in reverse starting at the end!
#5: Export Your Final Video
When you’re finished creating your video, you’re ready to export it. First, click the Export Contents icon to the left of your timeline. This will add your whole timeline to the Export queue.
If you see a pop-up box asking if you want to Export Your Video right now, click Go to Exporting, which will open up the Export tab.
On the right side of the Export tab, you’ll see a list of presets to choose from. The YouTube 1080p HD MP4 option is a great standard option that will download your video in a HD format to upload where you like.
Note: Although the preset is called “YouTube,” it’s not just for YouTube; you can upload the video to other platforms if you want.
On the left, you’ll see your export queue. Click the Output path to change the filename and select where the file will be saved.
Click Start Exporting at the bottom of the screen to export your file.
You’ll see the progress bar start to go up as the file is downloaded to where you specified on your computer.
Check out the video below to find out more about how to use HitFilm Express.
Time-Saving Keyboard Shortcuts
It’s important to become efficient with video editing. The first vlogs we did took almost all day to edit, but now the process only takes between 30 mins and 2 hours, depending on length and complexity.
Here are some of my favorite HitFilm Express keyboard shortcuts to make editing much quicker:
Editor Sequence Timeline
There is a ton of different video software available, but HitFilm Express is one of the most robust free solutions. This article just scratches the surface of what it can do, so it’s worthwhile to download the program and try it out for yourself.
If you’re doing a regular vlog where you have the same sound effects, intro/outro slides, backing music, and so on, you’ll save time if you have a template file. Create your first video from scratch and then use it to create your template. For future videos, you can just duplicate the template file on your computer and drop your latest clips into it.
What do you think? Do you have any additional video editing tips to share? What video editing software do you use? Let me know if you have any questions in the comments and share your plans for creating your next video.
June 27, 2017 at 05:02AM
Facebook, Microsoft, YouTube and Twitter form Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism
Today Facebook, Microsoft, YouTube and Twitter collectively announced a new partnership aimed at reducing the accessibility of internet services to terrorists. The new Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism adds structure to existing efforts by the companies to target and remove recruiting materials for terror groups from major web platforms.
Together, the four tech leaders say they will collaborate on engineering solutions to the problem, sharing content classification techniques and effective reporting methods for users. Each company will also contribute to both technical and policy research and share best practices for counterspeech initiatives.
Back in December of 2016, the same four companies announced the creation of a shared industry hash database. By sharing hashes among each other, the group was able to collectively identify terror accounts without each having to do the time and resource intensive leg work independently. This new organization creates more formal bureaucracy for improving that database.
Similarly, Facebook, Microsoft, YouTube and Twitter will be teaching smaller companies and organizations to follow in their footsteps to adopt their own proactive plans for combating terror. A portion of this training will cover key strategies for executing counterspeech programs like YouTube’s Creators for Change and Facebook’s P2P and OCCI.
All of these actions are occurring side-by-side with public sector efforts. The G7 has been vocal about the importance of combatting extremism with a multi-pronged approach. Today’s partnership further solidifies the relationship between four multi-national tech companies with the aim of pushing back against terrorism on their respective platforms.Featured Image: Photodisc/Getty Images
via Twitter – TechCrunch https://techcrunch.com
June 26, 2017 at 02:24PM
Social Influencer Marketing: the Future of Business?
Social influencer marketing is crucial to any business strategy. Without a strong network of connections, advertisers will inevitably fall short of reaching and understanding their target audiences. On the other hand, reaching out to social influencers can pay dividends for your brand. Just ask Jon Ferrara.
Jon is the founder and CEO of Nimble, the next generation CRM product for small businesses. Jon was able to build his brand primarily by reaching out to trusted advisors in his target audience’s sphere of influence. Focusing on creating relationships with social influencers as his main marketing strategy, Jon shows us that a little kindness—and interest—can go a long way.
You can listen to Jon’s story on the Renegade Thinkers Unite podcast below, or read on for highlights of the episode.
Looking Beyond Customers
Jon made it big in marketing in 1989, when he co-founded GoldMine CRM, a breakthrough organization that helped companies better reach their audiences. At GoldMine, Jon pioneered the very idea of customer relationship management. Taking everything he learned from that experience, he founded Nimble to help companies everywhere improve their CRM strategies.
In order to truly connect with customers, Jon looks beyond his audience. “To access prospects and customers at scale, don’t think about marketing to them,” he says. “Think about identifying their trusted advisers, their influencers, and build relationships with those influencers and help those people succeed.”
Much of Jon’s marketing success stems from this strategy. When he first started Nimble, he went in with a bold belief: that customers would rather hear about a brand from people they trust than from the brand itself. Jon says, “I think it’s more powerful when other people talk about you than when you talk about you.” After earning the title of “Sales Intelligence Market Leader #1 in Customer Satisfaction” from G2 Crowd for the third straight year in 2016, it’s clear that Nimble knows how to build relationships.
Give a Little Bit
Jon’s story reveals how social media sharing can lay the foundation for forming valuable business ties. In order to reach influencers with Nimble’s message, Jon would share their own material on social media to get the ball rolling.
“And so in taking Nimble to scale, what I did is I started swimming in the social river and I found content that inspired and educated me about how to be better, smarter, faster at social sales or marketing,” Jon explains. “What this did is it attracted the audience of that influencer… but it also attracted that person. And so once that influencer who wrote that content reached out and thanked me, I then reeled them in and started a conversation.” Many of those conversations turned into friendships, which then opened doors to those influencers’ follower spheres.
Service Is the New Selling
As consumers become more aware and weary of targeted ads, marketers will need to change their approach to selling. As Jon’s journey suggests, customers don’t typically enjoy being advertised to, thus the road to more conversions may be found not by selling, but by serving.
“I think service is the new selling,” Jon states. “I think that if you give away enough knowledge that you will set yourself up as the trusted expert, and that [consumers] will hire you to do those things.”
The post Social Influencer Marketing: the Future of Business? appeared first on Social Media Explorer.
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June 26, 2017 at 01:32PM
16 Essentials to Creating a Trust-Boosting Twitter Profile
I don’t need to tell you how big trust in business and marketing is.
Trust is everything.
You can pull every clever trick in the book, invest thousands of dollars in slick, sexy advertising and work tirelessly on conversion optimization tactics.
But at the end of the day, it’s trust that leads to sales.
That’s probably why word-of-mouth marketing is just as important as it’s ever been.
A new study from Ogilvy, Google and TNS found,
According to that study, 74% of consumers cite word of mouth as being the most powerful factor.
And this totally makes sense.
I’ll trust the input of a friend or family member over some hotshot salesman any day of the week.
So, when it comes to your Twitter profile, trust-building should be given top priority.
You obviously want to grow your following.
But more importantly, you want your followers to trust you and take your opinion seriously.
Which elements should you focus on to build trust?
In this post, I share 16 essentials mandatory for creating a trust-boosting Twitter profile.
1. Use a branded background image
What’s the first thing Twitter users see when landing on your profile?
For most, it’s your background image.
Of course, it needs to look great and have the right pixel dimensions.
But it also needs to incorporate the same branding elements you use in your logo, on your website, other social accounts and so on.
Here’s a good example from Burt’s Bees:
Here’s another from Mashable:
Both incorporate a color scheme, style and message congruent with their overall brand.
This is important because it typically takes being exposed to your brand five to seven times before customers will buy.
2. Add an appropriate profile picture
Equally important is your profile picture.
Again, it needs to be appealing and be in line with the rest of your branding.
Here’s the image I use for my Neil Patel Twitter profile:
It’s simple yet professional, and visitors can instantly recognize me.
Here’s the profile picture for The Art of Manliness:
It’s matches the central theme of the Art of Manliness website.
3. Get verified
I’ve mentioned before that adding a trust seal to your checkout page can increase conversions.
Twitter has its own version of a trust seal, which is a blue check mark.
It looks like this:
Although it’s just a small, simple icon, it can pump up your trustworthiness considerably because Twitter users instantly know your account is authentic.
I know I always look for the blue verified badge when I’m searching for a celebrity or major brand.
To get verified, you’ll need to submit a request, which you can learn about here.
And here are some of the basic elements you must have in order to be approved:
4. Highlight your credentials (without being obnoxious about it)
Twitter allows you to include some brief biographical information on your profile.
This is the perfect place to explain your credentials and what you bring to the table.
Use this space wisely.
Here’s the info I include on my profile:
Here’s the info Chris Ducker includes:
Just don’t go overboard tooting your own horn to the point of being annoying.
5. Connect your website
Twitter also allows you to include a link to a website in your profile.
This is great for driving referral traffic and can also serve as a trust-booster.
6. Pin your best content to the top
Just like Facebook, Twitter gives you the option of pinning a top tweet to the top of your profile.
At the moment, I’m using this feature to promote my podcast.
Pinning a top tweet is a simple way to maximize the visibility of a particular post and is great for increasing trust.
Pick what you feel is your absolute best tweet, and pin it to the top of your profile.
Ideally, it would have already received plenty of engagement (e.g., retweets, likes, etc.) because this will make you seem more legit to first-time visitors.
Keep in mind this is the first post they will see.
Pinning a top tweet is simple.
Click on the downward arrow on the top right-hand corner of your favorite tweet.
Then click “Pin to your profile page:”
That’s all there is to it.
7. Stay away from garbage content
This is a no brainer but definitely worth mentioning.
At the end of the day, you’re only as credible as the content you tweet.
If you post genuinely insightful, relevant content, people will trust you more.
If you post garbage content that’s worthless, spammy and overtly self-serving, it’s going to kill your trustworthiness.
That’s why I always try to make sure my content hits its mark and matches the interests of my audience, which fall under the umbrella of digital marketing.
8. Retweet credible sources
Retweets are a big part of Twitter’s appeal.
With just a couple of clicks (or taps) you can retweet interesting content and share it with your audience.
But here’s the thing.
People will assess your legitimacy based on the type of content you retweet.
If you’re retweeting epic content from a credible source, you’re good to go.
This is going to enhance your image and increase your followers’ sense of trust toward you.
But if it’s crap, it’s going to diminish that sense of trust.
In other words, don’t retweet posts from spammy, irrelevant sources.
9. Link to major sites
Again, the content you associate yourself with can help or hurt your brand.
Sprinkle in a few articles each week from major publications such as The Atlantic, Harvard Business Review, The New Yorker, etc.—whatever matches your industry or niche.
It needs to be relevant to your audience and cover a topic of genuine interest to them.
And here’s another thing.
It’s best to include the URL of the publication so that people can instantly recognize it.
The idea here is you can inform/entertain your audience while benefiting from the trust people have in an established, trusted site.
10. Stick with a consistent theme
A big component of gaining trust is being seen as an expert or an authority on a particular subject.
To achieve this status, you have to be selective about the type of content you post.
For instance, you won’t catch me tweeting about interior design or cooking.
You’ll find me posting content strictly about digital marketing.
That’s my MO.
Be clear about what your niche is by sticking with a consistent theme.
11. Maintain a steady posting schedule
Of all the social networks, people tend to post the most frequently on Twitter.
According to a recent study from CoSchedule, “15 tweets per day is recommended.”
Don’t be afraid of going a little crazy with your tweets.
The most important thing is to be consistent and not have any major gaps between posts.
12. Pepper in some videos
I’m sure you know how huge video marketing is right now.
Brands that use video report more traffic, more leads and a higher ROI.
I also find video to be perfect for breaking down walls and making deeper connections.
Why not throw in a few videos on your Twitter page?
I’ve been doing this recently and am seeing some great results.
Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income does the same.
Just link content from your YouTube channel or website.
13. Don’t flood your tweets with hashtags
Hashtags are an effective way to increase the visibility of your tweets.
Their overuse, however, can backfire, especially on Twitter.
While it’s fine and even encouraged to use 10 or more hashtags on other networks, like Instagram, it’s considered best practice to use a maximum of three hashtags on Twitter.
However, two hashtags is ideal and is the number I typically aim for.
Recent research shows that
“Loading the box” with hashtags looks spammy and can be a trust killer.
14. Strive to hit the perfect ratio of followers
Let’s say someone has 100k followers.
But what if they’re following 500k people?
All of a sudden, they don’t seem as legit and trustworthy.
But let’s say someone who has 100k followers is following only 50k people.
You’re probably more likely to take them seriously because their number of followers outweighs the number of people they’re following.
It may seem like a popularity contest, but you should try to reach a favorable ratio of followers.
I would like to think I’ve got a nice ratio:
According to Kred Stories,
In other words, don’t follow a ridiculous number of accounts unless you’ve got a sizable following.
It just looks bad if you’re following thousands of people and you have only a handful of followers yourself.
15. Be a stickler for spelling and grammar
There’s evidence that indicates poor spelling and grammar costs businesses millions each year in sales.
Just like you should double-check your blog posts and emails, you should always look over your tweets before publishing anything.
Otherwise, blatant errors will make you look amateurish.
16. Reply to (valid) complaints
More and more businesses are using Twitter as a platform for handling customer service these days.
You’re likely to receive some complaints at some point along the way.
The worst thing you can do is ignore them.
Your followers will see them, and you’ll look bad.
The best approach is to respond as quickly as possible and try to resolve the situation.
Here’s a good example of Domino’s pulling this off perfectly:
Psychological studies have found that we have an innate desire to connect with others.
They also found that two specific brain regions—the ventral striatum and medial prefrontal cortex—were actively engaged when someone thought they were trusting a close friend.
Your goal on Twitter is to maximize your trustworthiness and create more positive interactions.
You want to bridge the gap and make people feel a sense of camaraderie with you.
The essentials I listed in this post should help you accomplish this in a variety of ways.
This should make first-time visitors more willing to follow you and help you strengthen your rapport with your existing followers.
How do you decide whether or not you trust a person or brand on Twitter?
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June 26, 2017 at 10:01AM
Gender Differences in Customer Expectations on Social Media [Infographic]
By now, we all know that customers expect quality service on social media. However, you might be surprised to learn that men and women approach their online complaints differently. A study by digital commerce agency Corra uncovered some interesting gender differences in customer service expectations. If your business’ target demographic is swayed towards a specific gender, knowing that group’s customer service behaviors can help you better tailor your approach. Check out the infographic below for the study’s findings:
Infographic by Corra. Republished with permission.
The post Gender Differences in Customer Expectations on Social Media [Infographic] appeared first on Social Media Explorer.
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June 26, 2017 at 09:42AM