Email Letter from Mari Smith

Mari Smith is one of the great authorities on all things social media. She is heavily into Facebook and Google+ and has lots of excellent ideas on how to use these tools to get more bang for everyone’s marketing buck.

Here is a copy of the newsletter she sent out this morning, but I highly recommend following her on all the social media channels.  She’s a good one!

So, I wanted to help you out by sharing just five hand-picked social media articles with you. These are a selection of my most popular tweets this week, in one handy list for you to check out:

FACEBOOK INSIGHTS

If you’ve noticed your Facebook Insights have not been tracking accurately lately, it’s a “normal delay!” Your fan page stats usually have around a 48 hour lag time. My friend Jeff Widman of PageLever.com created this fun, dynamic site to update fan page owners what’s happening with Insights: whyisfacebookinsightsnotworking (currently Insights are 3 days behind!). A good site to bookmark.

FACEBOOK CONTESTS

If you’ve ever wanted to run a contest, competition, sweepstakes or drawing on your fan page to boost engagement, get more fans and leads, there are rules you need to know about. This post does a good job of spelling out the guidelines: How To Run Competitions On Facebook By The Rules.

PINTEREST

Pinterest, Pinterest, Pinterest – everywhere you look on the web, everyone is buzzing about the latest “kid” on the social media block! Lol. It’s sort of like “virtual scrapbooking” and is wildly popular among women around the world. (It can be seriously addictive!). But, listen up fellow marketers: anywhere you get droves of people, that’s a golden opportunity for business! I found this guide by HubSpot to be particularly informative: The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Pinterest for Marketing.

Pinterest
GOOGLE+

Have you discovered the power of Google+ yet, Angelika? I totally get that it can feel like “one more thing to do.” However, I tell all my clients and students that the #1 reason to be on G+ is that Google OWNS search! You can rank extremly high for your keywords with just a little bit of regular activity on G+. On that note, here’s my top pick this week for a great post to read: 5 Things Marketing Professionals Should Know About Google+ for Business.

BLOGGING

Okay, maybe you’re not pining for Pinterest and you’re suffering from “Facebook fatigue” just now, and Google+ is on the someday list (hehe) — so, how about your blog?? ;) You may enjoy this dynamite post by my friend Marcus Sheridan: 50 Qualities of the Best Business Blogs in the World.

Webinar Series for getting Small Business Online

Here is my tentative outline for a webinar series on getting small and/or local business on the internet. Check the Guiding Light Marketing Facebook Page for event listings – they will appear there shortly.

Websites

  • what pages you should have
  • what content you should have
  • mobile ready
  • Google analytics

Business Listings

  • Google Places Listing
  • Yahoo Local
  • Bing
  • Universal Listings

Social Media Sign-up and making it Look Good

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Youtube

Making Social Media less Time Consuming

  • Hootsuite
  • automatic cross-posting

Location-based Checkins

  • Yelp
  • FourSquare
  • WeReward
  • Google+

Webinars

  • Creating Presentations
  • Meetcheap.com

The Difference between Facebook and Google+

From Jaana Nyström, posted on Google+

The difference between Facebook and Google+

The simplest way I can describe the difference between Facebook and Google Plus is that while Facebook helps you keep in touch with the people you already know, Google+ helps you get in touch with the peopleyou want to know.

You come to Facebook to find out what’s happening in your friend’s lives. For me, it has done a excellent job of reconnecting me to old friends and letting me better know the new friends I’ve made. Bravo to the Facebook team!
Google+, on the other hand, is the place to go if you’re interested in sharing thoughts and ideas, commenting on events, or learning and sharing knowledge about science, education, hobbies, sports, entertainment or the arts.

At first, joining Google+ can seem like walking into a cavernous hall devoid of people. However, the truth is that you’re surrounded by millions and to make them appear all you have to do is listen. Listening entails searching for people whom you want to hear and placing them in a “circle” of your choosing: “Friends”, “Family”, “Rugby Fans”, “Model Railroaders”, “Learning to Fly”, etc. Select a circle and a stream of posts from within flows down your screen.

Search Google+ for your favourite authors, artists, sports/film/TV stars. Search for your favourite hobby or anything you are interested in, then circle those who say things that grab your attention. Check who those individuals have circled or who has circled them. Select liberally and soon you’ll find yourself swimming in streams of thoughts, tips, and news about the very things that interest you.
The Facebook entry box asks “What is on your mind?” Google+ not only makes it easy to answer but also makes it even easier for others to find out what you have to say.

Give Google+ a try and don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s just another Facebook clone. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Google+ and Facebook serve two separate yet complimentary needs.

 

Angry Birds

New Webinar Service

webinarOffering a webinar is a great way to boost your online visibility. It refers to a service that allows conferencing events to be shared with remote locations. I plan on hosting a series of webinars on how to use social media, Google analytics, webinars, videos and websites to market your small, local business.

I will be using a new, and very cheap webinar service by Meetcheap.com.

Check back in a couple of days for a schedule of topics, and please contact me at apaul@guidinglightmarketing.com if you would like me to cover any topics or have any burning questions.

From the Wikipedia entry on Webinars:

Features

Other typical features of a web conference include:[4]

  • Slide show presentations – where images are presented to the audience and markup tools and a remote mouse pointer are used to engage the audience while the presenter discusses slide content.
  • Live or Streaming video – where full motion webcam, digital video camera or multi-media files are pushed to the audience.
  • VoIP (Real time audio communication through the computer via use of headphones and speakers)
  • Web tours – where URLs, data from forms, cookies, scripts and session data can be pushed to other participants enabling them to be pushed though web based logons, clicks, etc. This type of feature works well when demonstrating websites where users themselves can also participate.
  • Meeting Recording – where presentation activity is recorded on the client side or server side for later viewing and/or distribution.
  • Whiteboard with annotation (allowing the presenter and/or attendees to highlight or mark items on the slide presentation. Or, simply make notes on a blank whiteboard.)
  • Text chat – For live question and answer sessions, limited to the people connected to the meeting. Text chat may be public (echo’ed to all participants) or private (between 2 participants).
  • Polls and surveys (allows the presenter to conduct questions with multiple choice answers directed to the audience)
  • Screen sharing/desktop sharing/application sharing (where participants can view anything the presenter currently has shown on their screen. Some screen sharing applications allow for remote desktop control, allowing participants to manipulate the presenters screen, although this is not widely used.)

Web conferencing is often sold as a service, hosted on a web server controlled by the vendor. Offerings vary per vendor but most hosted services provide a cost per user per minute model, a monthly flat fee model and a seat model. Some vendors also provide a server side solution which allows the customer to host their own web conferencing service on their own servers. Examples of this include Microsoft Office Communications Server (Lync Server).

New Websites

I’ve been making websites for everyone and their dog. Ok, not their dog, but I did make one for a dog walker.  Here are screenshots of the front pages with links.

All sites are relatively SEO optimized, meaning they have header tags, not too much extraneous bits, and try to follow the advice Hubspot gives when using their website grader.  This is worth checking out and running your website through about once a month.  The results that come back from Hubspot frequently differ when their backend takes into account new features.

My biggest challenge in getting two of these websites SEO, is that the owners are unlikely to be good at managing a blog. Not having a blog means you don’t generate much new content. Google announced that having fresh content is going to be the biggest component in ranking high in the new rank order, determined by fresh and good content.

 

 

BigLittle CatDog website designed

 

GLR Management

 

To Make Beautiful

Hubspot had a few other suggestions, but really most of them came down to having a blog and being connected to Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

Q and A

Let’s Hangout!

I want to hangout. Here’s your invitation to hang out and talk about social media, local marketing, and your online presence.

This event is entirely online on Google+ at Thursday Dec 8th at 9pm to 10pm (-ish)

It is FREE

You can join if you create a Google+ account by going to https://plus.google.com/ and following Angelika Paul (that’s me) at https://plus.google.com/104214171578749661248 and Guiding Light Marketing at https://plus.google.com/b/11716882725075500753

Send an email to apaul@guidinglightmarketing.com if you need help :-)

Bring any and all questions you have about online marketing, websites, blogs, facebook, etc.

Thanks, and thank you for supporting a local Stoneham business.

Angelika Paul, Ph.D.
Phone: 781-462-5807
Email: apaul@guidinglightmarketing.com
Website: http://www.guidinglightmarketing.com
VCard: http://www.guidinglightmarketing.com/AngelikaPaul.vcf

Ranking high in searches

To get on the first page of Google Search, I recommend:
  • creating a dedicated SEO optimized website to drive sales
  • supporting the website with activities, community pages , Google+ and Facebook pages (everything needs to be created de novo to affect search engine ranking
  • frequently creating new content – Google just announced that this will now help the most with search engine ranking.
Will that guarantee anything? No! You still have to look at the big picture. What is the competition doing? Can you adapt quickly to changing rules by Google?

Google+ Pages for Businesses

Google+ rolled out business pages a couple of days ago. No fanfare, but there has been a huge response on all the social media, SEO, digital marketing websites. The consensus seems to be that these pages will be invaluable to:

  1. drive traffic to your website
  2. help your page ranking
  3. create conversation with Hangouts
  4. and to let people recommend you on Google Search and ads with the +1 button
no word on how the last feature goes beyond the simple effect of adding the button to the website.
Anyhow, since Google is the giant it is, I recommend creating your business or brand page as soon as possible. Go to this link to get started:

https://plus.google.com/pages/create

and this is what you reach to stake out your Google+ turf.