How to Update Your Social Media in Less Than Two Hours a Week

How To Update Your Social Media in 2 Hours a WeekFeaturing a Guest Post by Melissa Donnelly, Marketing Assistant, Elkay Corporate Advisors

Finding content and publishing status updates for social media can be perceived as very time-consuming. Fortunately, there are many ways to make your time on social media more efficient and organized. You may be able to spend less than two hours a week working on social media.

Plan Ahead

Start by considering what type of content you would like to share with your fans, followers and connections. Marty Weintraub and Lauren Litwinka, authors of The Complete Social Media Community Manager’s Guide, developed the 50/30/20 rule. According to this standard, 50% of your social media content should be shared industry news. Thirty percent of your updates should showcase personality. And finally, 20% of your posts should be specifically about your business.

Content Development Tools

An editorial calendar is the key to organizing your social media content. Developing a social media editorial calendar can be as simple as creating a spreadsheet with dates, times, pre-written posts, and any images or links you would like to include. Read more about how to create an editorial calendar for your social media in just three steps here.

Another useful tool that can help organize your content is Readability.com. It serves as a virtual place to save any articles that you have read and would like to share with your fans later. Just remember to use the original post for your links!

Time Management Tools

Hootsuite.com is a web-based social media scheduler. By signing up for an account through Hootsuite, you can link to many of your social media platforms and schedule posts in advance. Facebook also allows admins to schedule posts in advance by using the clock icon on the status update bar.Read more about scheduling posts in Facebook here.

By planning ahead and using these tools, you may be able to schedule as much as 80% of your social media updates in advance. The rest of your status updates, tweets and posts can be done “in real time”. A little organization and some helpful tools can make updating social media a much more efficient process.

 

Podcast: Smart Marketing: Tools for Today to Grow Your Business

Smart Marketing Tools To Grow Your BusinessHave you ever wondered what it takes to create exponential growth for your company? Just how does a marketing strategy result in exponential growth? Companies that have experienced tremendous success and rapid growth implement smart marketing tools to accelerate the process.

Listen to our latest podcast from 30 Minute Business Dig as we dig deep with Mike Slover, ad writer and marketing and advertising expert, on his perspective, based on his vast experience, about the fundamentals of smart marketing.

Mike builds on these three key objectives:

  1. finding the right selling strategy by identifying limiting factors and defeating objections
  2. imposing characteristics on your brand to make it likable, trustworthy and relatable, and
  3. retaining your customer base by creating an unexpected positive experience – the “delight factor”.

7 Steps to Using Hashtags in Your Social Media Strategy

7 Steps To Using Hashtags in Your Social Media StrategyFacebook has finally joined the trend and now supports clickable hashtags. Now, if you are not a user of Twitter, Instagram or Google+, you might think “so what?” The game changer is that Facebook and its over one billion users have now joined the party. Hashtags have been used in the other social media platforms all along, but Facebook can expose your business and brand to an entirely new audience.

For the newbie, a hashtag is the use of the symbol (#) in front of a word, a phrase, or even a picture or video that makes the item findable as a searchable “tag”. It makes it incredibly easy to follow topics, trends, brands, conversations and so on. The Twitterverse has been using them for years, and they are especially useful for breaking news and Twitter’s version of chat called Tweetchat. Conferences and conventions have been using hashtags to aggregate their content for their events, and many advertisers and networks have exploited their use on TV or in print.

While Facebook hasn’t perfected its hashtag implementation (there are some glitches), it is significant enough for businesses to take notice. If your business hasn’t adopted its own hashtag and use of them in your content, now is the time to include them in your social media strategy.

7 Steps to Get Started

  1. Create a hashtag for your business name or brand. You will use this to tag content (status updates, pictures, videos) so your name is searchable. If you don’t use Twitter, you have more flexibility. (In Twitter, every character counts!) In the process of deciding your hashtag, research it first by doing searches in all the platforms to make sure it is not already in use. In my case, I use #ElkayAdvisors. (more…)

Podcast: Sell Yourself to Your LinkedIn Audience

Sell Yourself To Your LinkedIn AudienceAre you utilizing LinkedIn to its fullest potential? With so many changes to keep up with, 30 Minute Business Dig invited LinkedIn guru Wayne Breitbarth back to our Blog Talk Radio show to share the latest tips and tricks to using LinkedIn as a dynamic marketing tool.

During our podcast, Wayne answers questions about the newest features on the platform, how to use media and the professional gallery to differentiate your profile from the pack, and the importance of recommendations and endorsements. Click on the link to get a copy of his white paper referred to in the podcast, Don’t Whine About LinkedIn’s Changes, Capitalize on Them!

Getting Face-to-Face: How to Optimize Your Networking Time

Getting Face to Face: How to Optimize Your Networking TimeAre you looking for ways to optimize your time and effort when it comes to networking? Today, it takes a combination of using both online and offline strategies to make your connections count and help you grow your business. By joining groups in social networks, you can connect with prospects and referral sources to build relationships before you meet them in person. By strategically searching for events, you can spend more time at functions that also attract your ideal clients. Start at the web sites below and get networking!

LinkedIn – Your LinkedIn profile is only the first step in leveraging this powerful platform that is geared specifically to helping professionals connect with professionals. To expand your reach beyond your connections, look to join groups that will help you connect and share with your peers, purchasers of your products/services, and referral sources. (more…)

Facebook Changes Rules for Cover Images

Facebook has finally relaxed its rules governing the criteria for the cover image on business pages. Prior to this move, the restrictions were not business friendly, as well as not enforced in many cases. With the new rules in effect, admins of pages can now include the following (which were prohibited in the past):

  • price or purchase information
  • contact information
  • calls to action
  • references to Facebook features (such as “like” the page)

But, this is Facebook, so there is a new rule that must be applied – Text cannot exceed 20% of the image. Facebook continues to push for appealing images, especially when they appear in the timeline.

So how do you know if you are complying with the 20% text rule?  The Facebook Cover Compliance Tool will help you determine how much text you have on your image.

Here’s an example using the tool with one of my cover images. It shows that I have 12% text on my image.

Facebook Cover Image Text Test

Podcast: Growth Strategies for Solopreneurs

Growth Strategies For SolopreneursSolopreneurs need to plan for their growth just as any business makes projections for the new year.  “Solos” face different challenges since they are not in an environment with a staff, communication with management, and structure to the process. For this reason, creating habits that will help the business be sustainable and grow are paramount to the success of their business.

In this podcast, we discuss discuss methods to leverage your talents to power up your business such as

  • How to assess your current business situation (What worked? What can be left behind?)
  • Professional development strategies for solopreneurs
  • How mastermind groups, mentors, and coaches can work for you.
  • How are your habits working for you? Are time management strategies in your mix?
  • How will you keep fresh, grounded, and ready to make your best strategic planning decisions for the new year?

Social Media for Business – 7 Steps to Create Your Strategy

Social Media for Business - 7 Steps to Create Your StrategyOne of the most common statements I hear from businesses is “I know we need to use social media in our marketing, but we don’t know where to start.” One of the tools I use in my Social Media Strategy Workshop is a worksheet that helps businesses use a strategic approach to implementing and integrating social media into their marketing mix.

7 Steps to Create Your Social Media Strategy (more…)

Using LinkedIn to Build Your Business in Just 15 Minutes a Day

Using LinkedIn to Build Your Business in Just 15 Minutes a DayWhile many people only see LinkedIn as an online resume, savvy business people know that this social media platform is a great resource to help build your business and generate leads.

Wayne Breitbarth, LinkedIn expert and author of “The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success: Kickstart Your Business, Brand and Job Search” was a guest on Blog Talk Radio 30 Minute Business Dig and shared his best tips to getting the most out of this social media platform in just 15 minutes a day!

First, the there are two basic principles you need to follow with LinkedIn: 1) the more connections you have the better it will work for you, and 2) you must include keywords and personal branding stories in your profile.

According to Wayne, a great rule of thumb is “100 and 100,” which means get at least 100 connections and get your profile completed to 100%.

Here are Wayne’s top 6 tips to building your business using LinkedIn in 15 minutes a day.

  1. Make sure you respond to the messages in your inbox. Be responsive to people or you will miss opportunities.
  2. Be sure to invite the people you’ve met recently. Be proactive by inviting people to connect with you and do not use the standard (default) invitation message in your request. Give the person a reason to connect.  Also do not to do it from your mobile device, since this will only use the default message. Once you connect, see if you can follow up in person.
  3. Go through the previous discussions in your groups or post your own discussion. Share your expertise, and people will see you as the key authority in that space. Jump into discussions and help people.
  4. Review status updates from the previous day.
  5. Be sure to post your own status updates. Best practice – get started with one a day between 11 a.m. –  3 p.m. Always have a link on your status update for more information.
  6. Stay on top of your friends and who they are meeting because you might want to meet those people too. Use the “recently connected” feature.

Wayne tips on using LinkedIn in 15 minutes a day can be downloaded on this PDF doc.  Listen to the entire interview below.

Survival Tips for New Business Owners

Survival Tips for New Business OwnersThis August, I am starting my fifth year in business. Statistics show that 8 out of 10 new businesses fail within the first three years. According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), only 51 percent of new businesses survive at least five years. Pretty daunting numbers, and add to that the worst recession since the Great Depression.

I can write a book on the lessons learned and the roller coaster ride it has been. I am amazed every day that I have accomplished so much and have survived when so many do not. I am especially proud of the work I have done for many clients who have hired me and trusted my expertise to help them. Not only is my business in the 51 percent, I am especially proud of two personal achievements in the last six months:

  • Having my story featured in the Asbury Park Press
  • Receiving an ASTRA Award from NJCAMA for my work

I often say that starting a business is like jumping off a cliff. For me, it was a well thought-out, strategic decision, yet nothing ever truly prepares you for what it will be like until you’ve made the jump. And trust me, the great recession did make it harder.

If you are thinking about starting a business because you have lost your job or are done with corporate bureaucracy, you can do it if you are prepared to make the jump. If you already know your expertise and the type of product/service you want to offer, I can share some key points that were critical to joining the 51 percent. (If you don’t know the type of business you want to start, you’ll need to figure that out first.) (more…)