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 Continue reading »

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:

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.) Continue reading »