Google Testing Local Marketing in NZ

Google seems to be testing Local Marketing in NZ with more changes.

Not only have we all gone through local marketing algorithm changes very recently that has rejigged all the rankings but I noticed other changed that won’t appeal to marketers.

Verify your Google Listing. Firstly there is absolute confusion globally about Google’s request to verify Google + Local listings. Some say it is only applying to Australia. Others say it applies to USA. Others are suggesting it is a global requirement. Basically -no verification and your listing disappears!

Is that why Absolute Discos / Absolute DJs Google + Local listing and its reviews have disappeared? I will test and see

Is that why this listing for Absolute Discos has been relegated to the middle of the page? It had held spots #1 to #3 consistently for all its keywords, through all the most stringent of Google algorithm changes, since 2003 until recently.

Google Maps Displaying a Single Result. Secondly Google Maps are only displaying a single result. Where are the multiple markers we are used to? Downunder we’ve been on holiday since Christmas and returned in February. Blink and Google changes! Or have I just missed the old news?

Google Changes February 2014

New Ad Format. Notice is the New Ad Format. The colour has gone! The ads are each labelled with ‘Ad’.

On occasions Google and YouTube make changes then revert to its status quo.

Watch this space!

Quick Tip On Responding to SEO Telemarketers

Want a Quick Tip on Responding to SEO Telemarketers?

Are you plagued by offshore and local SEO companies touting their services?

Ask them this one question and it sorts them out quick smart.

They will hang up if they don’t know the answer.  One call yesterday prompted this article. Please read on!

Want a SEO Telemarketer Quick tip

Want a SEO Telemarketer Quick tip?

Firstly go to their website. SEO companies who are just not up with the play still include dated methods in their menu of services e.g. posting to 50 or more directories.

Comment: Only local marketing directories matter. In NZ and Australia there are only a handful – approximately 10 key ones. Even in the USA it is not worth the time to cover more than the 10 main ones. There are many other Social SEO and other traffic methods.

Then you will need to cover these 2 things in the conversation:

1. Ask them how they will technically handle Google Plus Local  set up since they are based in a different suburb and city.

2. Tell then you are asking as if they can answer appropriately then you will know that they have earned your trust to give them your business.  Listen for the words ‘cleaning cookies’.

Reason? There is a cookie issue to take care  with Google + Local. If they cannot answer effectively without sidestepping the issue then they are not worthy of you giving them business.

Their telemarketing script. They will try to talk about keywords. That is irrelevant to this conversation. Instead they should be explaining that Google cookies the computer that is used to create the account and any ongoing work. The  telemarketer needs to be able to explain what they do to resolve this i.e. how they clean the cookies through 2 specific methods. A genuine company will allow for genuine concerns in their telemarketing campaigns.

When I cover these 2 things – every time they hang up. Clearly they are not companies I want to do business with. I assure you this will also screen out suitable companies for you, too even if your company is not marketing to other local businesses.

Not sure what a Google + Local listing can look like?

The Google + local search result looks like this (G+ local are local listings at the top of search results and look like traditional results except they sometimes include maps, and they include local businesses):

Auckland DJ hire Absolute Discos Absolute DJs Auckland
Auckland DJ hire Absolute Discos Absolute DJs Auckland

Here is an example of a close-up view of the Google + Local profile for the listing using Absolute Discos Auckland aka Absolute DJs Auckland NZ (a highly reputable Auckland DJ hire company, a premier Auckland DJ hire company).

Auckland DJ hire Absolute Discos Absolute DJs Auckland

Auckland DJ hire Absolute Discos Absolute DJs Auckland

When you click on the Google + Local links the profile looks like this with hours and contact details, product /service info, map, photos and genuine testimonial reviews posted by clients:

Auckland DJ hire Absolute Discos Absolute DJs Auckland

29 Essential Website Pages for Professionals Speakers Consultants Trainers Authors

What are the 29 Essential Website Pages for

Professionals, Speakers, Consultants, Trainers, Authors?

Are you a Professional, Speaker, Consultant, Trainer, or Author? Are you thinking of creating or revamping your website? What pages will you include and exclude to be sure you attract and satisfy your market’s needs? What pages would you include as part of your website planning and your website briefing? This is your shortcut – this article will make planning your website simple!

You may ask yourself why a Social Media consultant would write on this topic?  Setting up websites is part of my learnings and doings! Imminently I may be setting up  website for another client. I’ve become a consultant who embraces the fusion of the digital trends: websites to local marketing, social media to video marketing,  mobile marketing and interactive offline technologies. So I not only write, but also get involved in strategy and technical aspects. So websites are just one piece of this marketing mix so that I provide a strategy / frame work ready to generate leads and revenue.

After to many years of using a blog style website that does not meet client needs nor mine, that is exactly what I am in the midst of.  I have also received enquiries about how to go about the website planning. (Would you like me to create a more focussed product for you on with checklists for all considerations, website theme 0ptions and step by step processes?). Some of the core things we need to think about when planning the website are:

* BRANDING – colours, font styles, emotive triggers, look and feel, creates affinity with your market’s suspects and prospects e.g. the retro look appeals to the young and the young at heart! I’d use it for various niches and different markets’ psychographic profiles.

* PERSONAS  & YOUR TARGET MARKET’S KEY PROBLEMS – who is your target market? what are their key concerns? how do they try to solve their problems?  when where and how do they spend time? what is business life (or personal life) like for them? what are their demographics? what are the unique  market segments?

* MARKET GAPS – what questions and info needs does the completion not fulfil? what experience level does the market need that you offer?

* MONETISATION OF KNOWLEDGE – how will you make it simple and easy to provide info that the market wants? what parts will be free, a low  entry, mid and high level product offering be to suit various market affordability? what services will complement this?

* SALES FUNNELS – the ways you will take visitors through seeking information to enquiry and sale

* PRODUCTS & SERVICES– from self service online training products, mentoring & coaching services to speaking, consulting, and done for you services

What Pages Will You Add to Your Website?

From the thinking and planning of your website it will become clear which of these types of pages you will need to add to your menu. See if you can create these 21 types of pages on your site. Select from these:

1. HOW WE WORK / VALUES / OUR CLIENT PHILIOSOPHY or MANIFESTO – Try to communicate what your business/brand’s DNA is. Add in how you like to work  with clients from a process viewpoint as well as your philosophies. Use these to attract clients who are a mutual fit.

2. SERVICES – CONSULTING / SPEAKING / TRAINING MENTORING COACHING/ DONE FOR YOU Be results focussed. Examples you could  include: ‘pick my brains sessi0ns’, monthly contracted mentoring, professional audits & assessments, strategies, analysis, projects; training topics, timeframes and outcomes; professional services & customised solutions you offer to save clients time and effort.

List all your services, have a description on each, and link to a page for each.  Do the same if you offer products, rather than services.

Individual service – The more detail you can give on each service, the better.

3. FREE OFFER for LEAD GENERATION – free time limited consultation, free ebook / audio/video/webanr/ hangout, free mini review

4. FREE RESOURCES / LEARNING CENTRE – Define relevant, useful, and unavoidable jargon terms you think customers should know.  Explain concepts you’d like your customers to grasp – for their sake and for yours.  Even cannibalise some of your FAQs and use them here.

5. PRODUCTS – books, downloadables, online self service products you offer (usually training)  that you offer. These are delivered on autopilot from a coaching site, learning management system, membership site or even via email using an autoresponder series of emails. Training can be delivered using email, videos, pdfs, audio, webinars, hangouts, Skype. Define the process that gets prospects to sign up then buy. Use online training as a cost effective way of delivering what is more expensive the one on one training and coaching.

6. BOOK-SPECIFIC PAGES – book reviews, order pages / order links, Amazon links / display

7. MEET OUR TEAM or WHO IS or ABOUT US – This is a page everyone expects to see.  It’s also one that you can pretty easily optimise with keywords from your industry: These examples can be adapted to professional services aslo: ‘Our Trainer Team’ or ‘About Social Media Strategists’, ‘Meet Your Lawyers’

8. ABOUT / WHO IS / INDIVIDUAL BIOS – Have a page for each team member, alliance, employee. Professional, medical services may add in technician, agent, doctor, nurse, lawyer, paralegal, etc.

9. WHY HIRE US / ME – show what kind of credibility can you provide clients? how you are one step ahead of the competition?

10.WHAT DOES [YOUR NAME] DO – describe what you do, how you do it and for who. Make it really clear who you want to attract as clients and how you will help them.

11. SPEAKING CALENDAR / WHERE IS  [YOUR NAME] SPEAKING? – this verifies your experience, demand and availability.

12.BOOKING PAGE – for consulting appointments as well as for speaking engagement. WordPress has great plugins to do this very thing well!

13.SPEAKING TOPICS, DATES, TOPIC OUTLINES BENEFITS & OUTCOMES, ARRANGEMENTS – tell them how it works!

14. FAQs – You could have a general FAQ and one (or several) for more-specialised questions using keywords for your target markets.  You could have ‘For First-Time Website Owners FAQs’, ‘Common Questions on Hiring a Sales Trainer’

15. TESTIMONIALS – Ideally you’d mark them up with Schema or hReview-aggregate.

16. IN THE MEDIA – Have you been featured in the local paper, or did the local news reporter stick a mic in your face for 15 seconds?  Show or mention it here.

17. PHOTOS – Be sure to name the photos relevantly, and try to include captions.  Don’t overdo it.

18. VIDEOS – There are several types: you speaking or training, interviews, talking about your products and services, how to’s etc.   Embed your videos on the page.  See if you can name your page something like ‘x in action’ or “Videos on How to ____.”

19. KEY  RECOGNITION or AWARDS  – It’s fine to mention little stuff until there’s bigger stuff.

20. QUALIFICATONS or CERTIFICATONS – Same idea as with the “Awards” or “Recognition” page.  Use what you’ve got.

21. COMMUNITY or GIVING BACK  – Describe what you do for charity.  (Do something, if you’re not already.)

22. COMPANY HISTORY MUNITY – Stories sell! Stick to the story; on other pages you can talk about what makes you great.  If there’s not much of a history yet, consider doing a Values page.

23. TERMS of TRADE and financing – if applicable.

24. CASE STUDIES – Describe what you did for a specific customer or client (with his/her permission, of course).  Include pictures if you can.

25. SNAPSHOT OF OUR CLIENTS – ideal if you have some well branded clients!

26. PORTFOLIO / SNAPSHOT OF RESULTS– Most applicable if you’re a contractor, designer of any kind, or consultant.

27. REQUEST A QUOTE and link it to an enquiry form using form creator or plugins or to Google Docs or a survey tool

28. SALES FUNNEL PAGES – these are optin pages, sales pages, download pages designed to take people from asking people to giving you their email address to get a freebie to downloading it or to ‘selling people ‘ into ordering a product to receiving the digital product.

OTHER WEB OPTIONS:

29. MOBILE APP consider setting up a mobile app. Mobile apps are not mini websites! Apps are tools designed to deliver one specific item or is for one specific purpose. It might be a tool to solve a client problem while they are on the go, to provide helpful how-to content, reminder info. Think about what and where your prospects go with their mobile phone and ways you can simplify their life! For example, a recruitment company may choose to have an app to give a checklist of ways to prepare for an interview, tips on how to relax before getting there, keeping a positive mind-set, or on being focussed.

Is now a good time for you to brainstorm what you want to include in your new website? What have I missed off this list?

© Jenny Wilmshurst – please ask for permission to reproduce or share. There are requirements!

Social Selling Sales Automation

Social Selling and Sales Automation

are buzz words of the 2009 era and are of vital relevance for ROI in 2013, 2014 and beyond.

However what I am finding is that  Sales Trainers are very unaware of Sales Automation’s existence.

I also sense weariness about Social Selling.

Benefits of Sales Automation

However the combo of Sales Automation prospects and educates the client about products, services, solutions to their problems – all on a sales autopilot. Many companies are missing out on leveraging these tools!

Sales Automation warms up prospects in the sales process long before the need to see or hear from a Business Development Manager. So it saves companies’ time, resources. Sales Automation is great for prospects as they are in contact with the sales team when they feel emotionally connected with the company and readied for contact. It uses their  BDM skills in a way that optimises the sales communication. Sales Automation definitely increases ROI!

How does Sales Automation work?

Prospects receive information about issues that are relevant to their business. They opt in to receive these from a supplier’s  website. This information is related to problems that the prospect wants solved. The prospect successively receives email offers to access more and more relevant problem solving information.

The information follows a logical sequence according to a buyers journey. So the information covers questions they typically ask at the early to mid stage of a buying process. Each stage correlates to scoring points. This is so that the software can calculate buyer readiness.

So when a prospect asks for each piece of information they are also scored for readiness to discuss buying. This indicates a stage in buying behaviour automatically.  Once the software calculates a predetermined points level, it alerts the sales rep of the need to make contact with the prospect, Typically this would be to further qualify the prospect, answer detailed questions and make a time to meet, to demo or interview for a proposal.

Check out the Sales Automaton infographic for a quick tour of what Sales Automaton is all about!

Marketing Automation: Sales or Marketing Tool?

by Pardot.

New Web Project Flow Chart

Web project flow chart

Courtesy of visual.ly

Are you starting a new web project?

Wondering where to start with getting a new site up and running or redeveloping a new site?

How helpful would a New Web Project Flow Chart be?

This infographic leads you through the pathway from

1. Business Analysis (getting to know you and your market) Defining your goals, processes, objectives, target market, success measures.

2. Website Plan Information architecture, user experience (what your users will need and want to do no your site), look and feel of the site, what functions you will add to the site, online marketing

3. Content gathering and production Creating and collecting images, videos, downloadables, written content for the site

4 Wireframe and Website Design Creating the wireframes and design options of the Home Page

5. Website Development Coding the site and assembly of elements on the local server. If using  a theme, the developer can customise elements an

6. Testing Quality Assurance, usability testing and if needed copy testing with the market

7. Launch and promotion Deployment and publishing of the website. Launch of the online marketing plan.

8. Maintenance and support Content updates, training, customer service, technical support, technical updates,

BEFORE you approach a web developer you will need to:

1. Do your market research and marketing planning, define your branding philosophy and develop  colour scheme and logos that tune into your target markets. Affinity with your market will make or break the success of your venture. Write up notes as if you were developing a business plan. I prefer to use PowerPoint with at least one page per key plan item. Bullet point your notes for quick writing and review.

2. Find websites with the look and feel you are after. Screenshot them. Keep a record of their url. Note what you like about them

3. Find features and functionality  in specific sites and recording information using  the same method above

4. Find 3-5 competitor sites. Make sure your colour scheme and branding is unique compared to your competitors. Do at least one thing better than your competitors do.

5. Define the goal of the website. What problem dos it solve? To describe your web development as successful, what will it be like?

6. Itemise what tasks you will do and what the developer will do. Allocate budget and very general timelines

Then pull these items together in a way that can brief the web developer simply and effectively

Blog Post Topics that Work

‘How do I write blog topics that I know will work  for my clients and prospects?’

‘I just can’t get the time to write a blog post’

‘How will I know that my blog posts are relevant?’

Sometimes business owners struggle with the idea of what blog content to write about or getting the time to write about relevant blog topics.

Here are 3 ideas that can cut that problem at the knees, make your writing more meaningful for your reader and faster for you to write.

1. LEVERAGE CURRENT, RELEVANT, REAL MARKETING SITUATIONS WITHIN BLOG POSTS

Many times a week your prospects and clients will either ask for specific information, or you end up providing them with specific information as part of the buying decision-making process or part of the sales process.

These are the most market relevant topics you can ever write about.

They are current, topical, and fill a need right now. You can guarantee that even if one client or prospect has a need for that information, so will many others who you do not yet know. This is part of the beginning to creating relevant content. Later on you can rebuild this type of content into a logical sales funnel that leads these prospects into becoming clients on autopilot.

2. PLAN BLOG POST THEMES

If you reflect upon your business,  you will notice topic themes that make sense to write about. Imagine  you are in front of your idea client. They are asking you questions on the topic. What are they likely to ask you?  Write these down as sub topics. You can now add these to a content calendar. You can use a theme per week or month depending on how many questions you can muster.

3. SOLVE PROSPECTS’ AND CLIENTS’ PROBLEMS WITHIN BLOG POSTS

Topics that solve problems or pre-empt problems will hit your prospects and clients emotional buttons best. These types of posts will build rapport. When you clearly explain the problem, the solution and rationale behind the solution, and ask them to take action if they need your help, then you have set yourself up as the ‘go-to’ person in their minds. This creates a natural way for clients to lead themselves to ask to buy from you.

AN EXAMPLE FROM A MARKET SITUATION THIS WEEK

The other day I picked up my recently repaired computer. It suffered physical damage and viruses (virus protection failure!). I had multiple questions and concerns about avoiding viruses despite having active well branded virus protection What will happen when I load my old data, how well protected will my old data be? Should I set up more valuable data on a second computer that will not go anywhere near the internet? Which is the best current virus protector? Which terabyte brand and range is best right now?

In the course of these discussions one of  the most interesting aspects was the answer to which terabyte brand and product range. I learnt that some cheap product ranges within brands do not have the correct plugs to be able to hook up to enable the data extraction. This is vital if needing to have viruses removed! How many of us would know what pitfalls to look for in buying  a portable hard drive? The rationale behind why this IT provider would recommend only certain ranges was powerful! It makes perfect blog post fodder for clients with data protection issues!

VERIFY BLOG TOPICS?

Some bloggers and marketers also research blog topics. They can do so by asking their  client base via research using online survey tools. Others also like to do keyword research using keyword research software like Market Samurai or Google Planner tools (Google Keyword tool has gone and now the service is incorporated with Google ad planning tools).

Keyword Research and Social SEO are each full topics! So a light mention here is important for you to be aware of these concepts.

WHAT WILL YOU DO NEXT?

So what will you do to set yourself up to capture your best blog ideas?

Will you find a calendar you can post them to?

Will you mindmap the ideas?  on paper or on mindmap software?

What will you do to check how valuable these topics are to your market?

Facebook Ad Benchmarks 2013

Facebook Ad Benchmarks are vital for testing your ad results as you split test for optimum performance.

Since 2012 I’ve been running Facebook Ad campaigns for clients. Each client’s industry performs entirely differently. Some are regarded as ‘boring’ sectors, others are more fun. Through split testing the ads in the ‘boring’ sector and using an extremely tight targeting with the creative work that tuned into the market’s mind-set, I totally topped all expectations compared to the general Facebook Ad benchmarks.

Results vary quite considerably depending on the:

        • image style choices
        • image colours and border colours
        • humour or quirkiness
        • psychographic tuning in
        • text
        • market demographics
        • market psychographics
        • time of posting – by day
        • time of posting – by week
        • type of Facebook ad
        • placement of ad in newsfeed vs sidebar
        • click through to website vs Facebook page
        • fan likes vs clicks

For one client I tested 60 different ad variations. The range of difference varied by 100% above the lowest performing ads.

What would have been handy would be this benchmark statistical information.

You’ll find this a useful for performance benchmark of your Facebook Ads also.

performance metrics by sector FB ads 2013 emarketer

Benchmark performance metrics by FB ads 2013 emarketer

Go back to your ads and check on your past performance compared to these              benchmarks.

Rejig your copy and find alternative images. Test, test, test.

Your Facebook ad campaigns

Do you want someone to run these Facebook Ad Campaigns for you?

  • Do you want a ‘Done for You’ service?
  • Want a consultant to run split tests of your current campaigns so you can improve them?
  • Want to DIY or Facebook Ads Training?
  • Do you want to learn how to run Facebook Ad campaigns?
  • Do you want to leverage your ad campaigns with competitons?

Contact me – Jenny – on 09 525 0411 or 021 1221 541

I’ll get you started for a fee of $500 and upwards plus your ad and image costs

If you are not ready for ads but just want an interesting article then take a look at this analysis of Facebook Ad Benchmarking by emarketer

Plan & Migrate a Website from HTML to WordPress

How do you plan & migrate an HTML site to WordPress?

Getting ready to create a new website?

Though it is a particularly cut down version of what you need to think through, here are some considerations, If you plan to move a  website from HTML to WordPress:

  1. website branding
  2. web marketing and planning
  3. website look and feel
  4. website housekeeping
  5. keeping website SEO juice intact
  6. prompt website migration

1. WEBSITE BRANDING – more than a logo, have you created a brand concept that is market significant  i.e. more than graphics? what are the brand values? how well does it fit your target market?

2. WEB  & MARKETING PLANNING – have you set up a sales funnel? how easy is it for them to do want they and you want them to do? what will be the structure of the pages and menu ? is it ideal from a marketing perspective as well as a web perspective?

3. WEBSITE LOOK & FEEL – have you figured out the colours? do they convey your values? how well do the graphics tune into your target market?

If you are migrating an existing HTML site you will additionally need to think about:

1. WEBSITE HOUSEKEEPING – what pages, posts, links, images will stay and which will go?

2. RETAIN WEBSITE SEO JUICE – if you do not get excellent advice and execute the move to a new site set up you will LOSE so much of what you have built up. Seek an advanced web developer to do this so that you do not damage what you already have.

3. PROMPT WEBSITE MIGRATION – it is vital to avoid site downtime. It is possible to set up a new site and develop it while an existing site is live. Doing so will allow you to make a smooth transfer from one site download to the other’s upload. There are tools to allow development site development on the desktop (as a server) as well as more traditional web dev site development tools.

Click here for useful reading about moving an HTML site to WordPress  or even this article by Smashing Magazine  . Each covers some of the technical aspects. Being aware of them, even if you cannot action them is very important so that you can find just the right person to project manage the tasks for you or to do the job for you.

A tool that claims to make an HTML transfer easy is Themepress I found it interesting to learn about, though I have not used it.

A desktop server toolset you or a developer can use to develop the website on your computer before upload is here

Want to buy a package to help you plan your new website?

Soon I will bring out a product that you can download that steps your through the website planning process.

Interested in pre-ordering?

It’ll be cram packed with checklists, advice, set up instructions, understanding different types of website themes that are on the market, web marketing considerations, content planning, plus 1 hour of coaching / mentor time.

For $197 it’ll be an absolute steal! I normally charge $125 per hour for one on one coaching!

Email me at jenny@tweettwins.co.nz or jenny.w@slingshot.co.nz to order the WEBSITE PLANNING PACKAGE

No download button yet – as I want an idea of interest levels before putting in time to set up.

So email if you want to buy this package and we’ll get it all sorted for you with payment instructions, with delivery within 3 working days of payment (after receiving your email order)!

Social SEO Update: Infographic of The Test

Social SEO Update: Infographic of The Test

This is an update based on further testing and research about how Social Signals and SEO work together.

Sometimes people ask

‘Does Social Media work?’

‘Does Online Marketing work?’

‘What works now in online marketing and Social Media NOW – today?’

So this infographic is a great answer to those questions.

It is courtesy of TastyPlacements.

They wanted to test How Social Media Activity Impacts Organic Search Rankings. So how does Social SEO work? What are the findings of their test?  Here is an Infographic of The Test based on their premise –

‘Can social media activity impact organic search rankings? Popular wisdom says yes, but we set out to prove it with a simple test. We’ve compiled our findings into an easy-to-follow infographic’.


Infographic: Testing Social Signals

Infographic authored by TastyPlacement, an
Austin SEO
company, To view the original post, see the original

Social Media Infographic
.

Lead Nurture – Emails that Work Emails that Don’t Work

During consulting the needs vary greatly.

Sometimes I am reminded of client needs from questions and their progress through strategy and training. Other times I am prompted by what arrives in my inbox. I’ve started a swipe file of effective emails. Some emails arrive that work well, other emails don’t work at all. In fact they alienate!

Lead nurture prospecting

Let’s look at 2 email examples.

One email that works.

One email that doesn’t work

Recently 2 emails arrived that each prompted me to download a report.

The next step was interesting.

One email jumped a few steps from my mind-set and stage in the sales process.

It was exceedingly uncomfortable as a recipient. The other got me onside.

 

EMAIL SCENARIO 1:

The email that didn’t work for me

‘Hi Jenny,

Just following up on my email below.  Can we set up a quick call in the next week or so?

Thanks,
[name]
The email referred to was:

‘Hi Jenny,

Thanks for downloading our [name of ] eBook!  As I see that you are interested in [topic] and [another topic] in general, I would like to take this opportunity to set up a quick call to introduce [company name]. I think [company name] can be a great tool for helping you [company name] is the #1 [industry type] tool and helps over [number] websites to improve conversions, sales and revenue and optimize their online experience. It is trusted by some of the largest websites, such as [client names]. Our clients report great results such as 55% boost in conversion rate, 17% reduction in bounce rate and 39% increase visit duration. 

We’ve gotten great feedback so far and I’d like to hear what you think. I am pretty open, what time works for a quick call?   

Looking forward to speaking with you! 

Best, 

[name and contact details]’

EMAIL SCENARIO 2:
The email that worked and created rapport
Now compare that with this email from a completely different company I downloaded content from:

‘Hi Jenny,

I saw you downloaded a few ebooks and reports on [company name] just now, and I thought I’d say hello.

I realize timing-wise you’re probably just in the research phase, so I just wanted to learn a bit more about your company, and see if I can help at all.

Is there any information/research I can help put together for you?

[Name and contact details]’

 

What differences do you see

in their email marketing tactics?

The learnings

1. The Call to Actions are different: #1 asking for a call vs. #2 asking to help solve a problem. #2 is way more effective. #1 caused me to think ‘I don’t know you, I don’t recall your first email, I don’t want to talk with you. Why do I want to have an interest in your company?.’ #2 left me thinking ‘I like you, you are friendly and you care about what I think and feel.’

2. The Tone is different: friendly vs. formal. I appreciate informality and many business owners do too. #1 is formal.

3. The Tuning In is different: #1 wants to assert itself. #2 wants to understand me, tries to put themselves in my shoes. #2 recognises the stage in the sales cycle / buying cycle I am in. #1 is jumping from interest in a report, to interest in the tool and its company without feeding / nurturing my need, desire, interest or knowledge of them. They did not check to see if I’d got the first email. They jumped say too many steps into a decision making process. #2 has not thought about what it is like being in its prospect’s shoes.

4: The Follow up is different: #1 wants to jump a step or 2 and get in front of me before they earned the right to. #2 has not yet followed up but it tried to build a relationship readying me for the next stage in the sales funnel. #1 needs to add a few rapport building emails that follow also tune into the stages of the decision making process from rapport to problem recognition / needs to education to solution  leading to curiosity and enquiry.

5. Telling vs Asking: #1 just wants to tell their story! Where does the prospect fit with this communication? This mistake is layered upon formality.  If #1 still wanted to keep formality what they could do is ask me a question to break the informality and create a conversation. Such conversation would prepare my thinking and build desire for the phone call. They could even give me 2 communication choices – a call or email conversation.

6: You and I: We: #2 uses I as a first word. People of my age are taught not to do this BUT we should as it works!  ‘I saw…I realize…I want…I see’. Why does it work? While I read, I can ‘hear’ the person in front of me as if they are in the same room with me. It is like a nice ‘get to know you’ chat over coffee’. At the end of the email is a person who is not afraid to be personable, friendly and have a personality.

7. The Company / Product vs Email Reader: #2 wants me to know the company, not their product and I can not tell what kind of personality is behind the email. The email seems to be written as if the Company and Product are more important than the person receiving the email.

 

All markets differ. Each sales funnel will differ. The principle and planning behind each are similar.

Start by consider who your target market are. Know them more than their age, gender and location. Walk in their shoes.

What questions will they ask? How are the senses they will use? What will need to know as they go from low interest to product and company comparison to purchase, and all the little steps between? Be very human. Ponder how you might re-write your emails so they are more in tune with your market. Which emails will you start with?

 

PS Pay attention to your headline – it is a single line message to get people to open the email!

What are your questions about this topic?

 

 

Social SEO Update: Does Google Use Social Media to Build Website Rank?

In the market place there appears to be a bit of confusion about ways Social Media affects or even benefits their website’s SEO. Does Google Use Social Media to Build Website Rank? Here is an update about Social SEO.

Recently I saw the comment from a blogger who suggests ‘the more people are talking about you and engaging with your brand on social media, the higher Google ranks you for your search terms’. As there are many aspects to this and it constantly changes, I began searching for a better way to explain how Social SEO works in 2013.

So the question is Does Google Use Social Media to Build Website Rank i.e. Social SEO?

In answering this, it is important to differentiate between ranking the website, ranking the content and ranking the type of interaction.

Key research into 2013 ranking factors are at:

http://blog.searchmetrics.com/us/2013/06/27/ranking-factors-2013-google-usa/ with an infographic summarising the results at www.searchmetrics.com/us2013

http://moz.com/blog/ranking-factors-2013

Searchmetrics reports on their results: ‘We have evaluated the 30 first search results of 10,000 keywords, thereby analysing 300,000 websites. As a consequence, we have not only analysed the top keywords, but also culled navigational searches as well; filtering largely brand search in order to deliver a better result.  The result is 150 GB of data for all titles, descriptions, links, content, etc. – together with several billion backlinks, Facebook likes and shares, and millions of tweets and PlusOnes. In short: we have once again searched through a large, fresh database in order to show you what the top URLs in the Google SERPs have in common, and what makes them different from the more poorly ranked pages.’

The SEOMoz approach was similar with similar results.

Myth or Truth? #1: Google Ranks Specific Posts? 

This was true before 2009 but not in 2013. In 2008 and 2009 as Twitter and Facebook began to ramp up inn B2C markets and LinkedIn began to gain favour in B2B markets, some Social Media interactions ranked. Some activity influenced rankings of content.

Since around 2009, this has not been the case. Google does not rank the Social Media content any longer. There is no link juice of s to websites based on Social Media interaction levels, as they bear ‘rel=do not follow’ on the content / links.

Some Social Media consultants report temporary ranking of Facebook content. Temporary ranking  is a matter of hours not days or weeks. Therefore we would not consider it a viable content ranking factor.

Myth or Truth? #2: Engagement affects a Website’s Google ranking?

Yes. No. To a degree it appears SEO’s agree that there is some correlation between interactions and rank. It does seem to vary from platform to platform. These are called ‘Social Signals’. These signals include things like Facebook comments, Pinterest pins, tweets, and – perhaps most importantly – Google +1 posts.

How does Google rank social interaction in Q3 2013?

The Moz Blog (SEOMoz) recently surveyed 120 professional SEO’s and report on the key factors in their article entitled 2013 Search Engine Ranking Factors. One of the aspects they evaluated are ‘Social signals, especially Google +1s and Facebook shares are highly correlated.’

SEOMoz suggests ‘As in 2011, social signals were some of our highest correlated factors, with Google+ edging out Facebook and Twitter’. Google + ranked highest followed by Facebook shares, then tweets. SEOs, on the other hand, do not think that social signals are very important in the overall algorithm. This is one of those places where the correlation may be explainable by other factors such as links, and there may not be direct causation…SEOs do not think social factors are important in the 2013 algorithm (only 7%), in contrast to the high correlations.

Myth or Truth? #3: Google Ranks Social Media Profiles?

Yes and No. There seems to be little research about this specifically. Again it appears that Google is favouring Google + . This is a contrary topic. Google’s Matt Cutts denies that they rank Google + higher than other online sources.

The industry suggests that it is a healthy practice to use good keywording in profiles is of benefit to Google ranking. Key wording profiles is recommended as one of the many says to ranking  within a Social Media Platform itself.

Conclusion and Comments on Social SEO

1. Prioritise your use of Social Media based on Google’s favourite Social Media. Post on Google +.

2. Prioritise based on your market’s use of Social Media

3. Use Guidelines to use SEO Best Practice https://static.googleusercontent.com/external_content/untrusted_dlcp/www.google.com/en/us/webmasters/docs/search-engine-optimization-starter-guide.pdf

and http://moz.com/blog/ranking-factors-2013

4. Use keywords in profile About Us sections

5. Keep on being Social to influence brand awareness

21 Ways to Repurpose Content for Traffic & Interaction

Stuck for idea on where to create content or ways to repurpose what you already have?

Wanting ways that will set up your content, ready to generate traffic and get interaction with your ideal target custom and your best markets?

These 21 ways will guarantee you’ll never be short of ideas again!

  1. Mobile App
  2. Your blog or Guest blog
  3. Facebook
  4. YouTube & video sites
  5. LinkedIn
  6. Image sharing sites
  7. Teleseminar or Webinar
  8. Google Hangouts
  9. Augmented Reality
  10. Ecourse
  11. Ezines
  12. Online radio
  13. Podcasts
  14. Freebie specials
  15. Speech
  16. CD DVD Kindle ebook
  17. Hard cover printed book
  18. Live events
  19. Coaching mentoring or training
  20. Press releases
  21. VIP days

Now are you stuck with how to put these into action?

Not enough time? Not enough know how?

That is where I come in to get your projects on the go from start up to getting content up online. Content done for you.

Want me to take care of it for you?

Call me on 525 0411 or 021 1221 541 or  email jenny@tweettwins.co.nz – Jenny

New Facebook Contest & Promo Rules

Facebook Promotional Guidelines for Contest 2013

Just hours ago Facebook released breaking news of its new and loosened Facebook Contest and Promotions Rules and Terms of Service.

These are published under Facebook’s Page Promotion Terms as well as Facebook’s downloadable Promotion Guidelines. In short you can run contests in a simple way by asking for a Like, Comment, or a Message (not a share). Third party apps use are no longer a requirement. From August 2013 Facebook Contest Rules will never be the same again!

This change makes it easier to run promos, and it will save you time and money. It makes it easier to start Facebook marketing, and begin to reach early goals. This is especially good news if you are in a lean start up phase.

What does Facebook regard as Promotions?

Facebook suggests these:

  • Entry/registration
  • Element of chance
  • Giveaway or prize

What has Facebook changed with its Competition and Promotion rules?

  • Facebook no longer requires third party apps to administer competitions
  • in other words – it is now legal to use the Page timeline to promo competitions with no app

Can Facebook Page Administrators still use apps?

Yes you can still use apps. Facebook gives Pages permission to administer promotions via their Page tabs and apps as long as the promotion is run according to Facebook’s promotion guidelines. Do I recommend using third party apps still? Yes, definitely, as soon as your budget allows. Apps are a benefit for gathering email addresses for long term relationships, market education and promotion, and analytics. Apps allow you to be in control of your database, and your marketing.

Why is Facebook making this change to its Contests, Competitions and Promotions rules?

  • ‘Facebook wants to make it easier for marketers to create and administer  Contests, Competitions and Promotions
  • it benefits companies of all sizes
  • it aligns its policies’

New Facebook Contest rules Aug 2013  http://www.tweettwins.co.nz

What CAN you do with Contests, Competitions and Promotions?

since the 27th August 2013 change Facebook Pages can:

  • ‘Collect entries by having users post on the Page or comment/like a Page post. Note – ‘sharing’ is not in this list!

  • Collect entries by having users message the Page

  • Use an app to promo

 

This is a bit like using Facebook likes as a voting mechanism.

What can you NOT do with Contests, Competitions and Promotions?

since the 27th August 2013 change?

  • Tagging: Facebook prohibits Pages from tagging or encouraging people to tag themselves in content that they are not actually depicted in. So, it’s not OK to ask people tag themselves in pictures of a new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize
  • Clients must not administer a promotion on a personal Timelie or Profile Page. This has not changed.’
  • Can’t ask people to take part in a promotion by liking, sharing, or posting something on their Personal Timeline. All must be done on the Facebook Page

 

Note key elements:

  • that as the policy does not permit ‘share’
  • the policy does not permit this interaction on Personal Timelines / Personal  Profiles
  • tagging is a no, no.

Why are Facebook Competition interactions limited to Pages?

  • Facebook wants high quality content with caring Page with Fan interaction
  • Privacy control is another issue. Confining interaction to the Page enables fans to control, choose & ‘limit visibility of their interaction to only themselves, friends or to a custom group of people ‘
  • Technically it is not possible for ‘Pages to access all of the entries that people post on their own Timelines unless these entries are public.’

What are the benefits of Facebook competitions with no contest app?

  • SAVES TIME – simply create post that requires people to like, comment and message for a chance to enter and win the contest. The post will show in the Facebook’s News Feed. Simple, easy, no learning curve, no software
  • SAVES MONEY – it’s FREE. No apps to lease or buy. Less graphics to design. Spend the money on the prize and on ads to promote the competition and grow your fan base instead!
  • SAVES EFFORT – easier for people to enter a contest. In the industry we anticipate this will make it easier for people to see and interact with your contest.
  • MOBILE FRIENDLY –  The contest will be as mobile friendly as Facebook is (Apps tabs are not mobile friendly.). No more concerns about whether contest is mobile friendly or not.
  • STRESS FREE – no worries about which is the best app to use – if you decide on the ‘no app’ way
  • INTERACTIVE – competitions are a great way to get fans to talk and interact with you – on your Page

If a couple of clients follow through with their plans, I will soon be testing competitions with some fairly new Facebook Pages. Come back to this bog to see the results using these new and loosened Facebook contest rules.

What are the disadvantages of Facebook competitions with no contest apps?

  • WILL NOT BUILD LIKES – without an app you will get comments, but you won’t build likes. Apps require ‘likes’ to enter
  • WILL NOT BUILD AN EMAIL LIST – without an app you will not build an email opt in database. With an app as people join the contest they also opt in to your database.
  • LESS BRANDING OPPORTUNITY – strong branding and looking professional attracts.
  • LESS PROFESSIONAL – while no apps & posting to the timeline is a simple, it is also a less professional method. For those with design and programming skills, an alternative to using third party apps, is to set up a landing page .

How To Run a Contest from Your Fan Page Timeline in 2013

  1. Plan the competition. Write a post telling your fans about the contest (graphics & ads will help a lot!), choose a winner and give away the prize. Promote the completion.
  2. Or after competition planning, use a third party app to host the competition. Choose a winner and give away the prize. Promote the completion. Promote the completion.
  3. Or with competition planning, set up a landing page to lead capture, Write a post / display graphics telling your fans about the contest, choose a winner and give away the prize. Promote the completion.

More info on Facebook Promotion Guidelines 

For info on Facebook contest apps  and pre- August 2013 Facebook contest rules head on over to this post

Interested jn the legal implications of the new Facebook Promotional Guidelines and contest rules?

You will find this link on Facebook Promotion Guidelines handy for the official word from Facebook

Want help with your Facebook Ads and Contests?

If you need a hand with planning your Facebook competitions, using Facebook apps, and planning or implementing Facebook Ads (yes, you need them to work hand in hand with your competitions) then ask me!

Chargeable Options:

1. Q & A session

2. Coaching or training

3. Consulting – done for you planning

4. Consulting – done for you planning and implementation

Contact me: The very best places you can reach me on are https://www.facebook.com/TweetTwins or http://www.linkedin.com/in/jennywilmshurst  (if this site was a fully fledged website I’d be using automated landing pages and automated forms). A new website is in early planning stages!

Info I will need in your initial enquiry are: your Facebook page url, your personal profile url, website, estimated Facebook Ads / Competition campaign start date, budget, which chargeable option you’d like to use. We will talk about other planning needs when we get started.

Looking forward to helping you!

3 Ways to Validate Your Product Concept Fast

Looking for ways to validate your product concept?

How can you avoid risks? How go from ‘great idea’ to knowing how successful your product could be? Check out these 3 ways to validate your product concept fast, and with controlled risk.

Typically companies or entrepreneurial folks will get a great idea. They’d go for it to the nth degree to perfect the product  and its promo, only to find that the demand and sales are worth significantly less than the effort put in or the optimum timing for launch has passed. It wasted time, effort and potential earnings. The emotional wrench is enormous!

How can you solve this problem?

It is important to validate a launch first.

Here are 3 ways to validate your product concept fast.

These can provide indications (not proof – just indications). These ways are a blend of traditional market research and innovative online research.

  1. Use keyword research

    to determine the amount of searches for certain keywords your prospect are highly likely to use just prior to the buying stage of their research

  2. Traditional market research.

    Use primary and secondary research the target markets. Here are some ideas of what are more useful to research:  problems your target market are experiencing, the volume of the market, understand the needs of the market segments, the likelihood of demand for your solution to their problem (your product).

  3. Test the market live.

    Test the market with online ads. Build a webpage, run some Google ads to it and when people click the buy now button they are shown a message that states the product is actually not available (yet). In 3-4 days, with very little spent on ads you will have some kind of indication from the data how viable your idea is likely to be. Test the market with crowd source funding. Specify a goal income. Run a campaign for a month. Describe your product. Give it a product delivery deadline for after the campaign finishes. Get sales. You produce the product AFTER the closure of the campaign. Choose a crowd source platform that gives you the earnings of the campaign regardless of whether you reach your funding goal or not. It is a win win for your buyers and for you as a seller. You put in the product development after you get the orders!

These methods would suit products that are easily understood by the market rather than being innovation products needing to build brand, or products that require education and explanation.

Facebook Competitions without Facebook Competition Apps

The most meaningful motivations for you to run Facebook Competitions with competition apps is the massive benefits to your business results vs risks.

So many of my stories are from conversations with clients who are searching for a better way to do business online and offline. Other stories from trends and online practices that just don’t work or could bring more powerful results if a few tweaks are applied.

Right now a few clients are either asking me for competitions or are needing the benefits of Facebook competitions. One thing I am noticing is a trend to use ‘Like and share this post and win..’ type of posts on their Facebook page walls. Usually these business owners are totally unaware of what leverage they are missing out on by not using competition apps. I’m sure that is a massive motivator compared to the fear of Facebook closing down their page for non compliance!

So to put it simply – when you get more likes on a page – that is all you get! What does ‘more likes get you? Numbers with no loyalty and not even necessarily a second look at your page.

From a marketing  perspective, it gives you more people who come to a  page and have absolutely no reasons to ever return. It bolsters up the page numbers wise – but that is it. If you do not use a competition app you have no way to talk to the same people again and again by email. Let’s say you own a nightclub. You run a ‘like and share campaign’ from your Facebook page ( one without a Facebook app and it is non complaint). The prize is a bar tab. You ask the winner to claim the prize off the Facebook Page. You get a ton of new likes. Now what? How can you make contact with the likers again? You don’t have their email addresses or their mobile phone numbers. So you cannot market to them again. Many Facebook page likers do not return to a page. Also how can you reward your existing fan base who have already ‘liked’?

Facebook competition apps allow you to run competitions for current fans as well as new ones, AND build in ways of capturing contact details.

From a Facebook perspective solely focussing on ‘likes’ does not satisfy the algorithms that Facebook uses to make pages more popular and visible. It is a bit like meeting people in a party while in holiday resort, and never needing to return or never having a way to catch up with them again. There is no reason or purpose to continuing the relationship and no reconnection.

Facebook’s algorithms rely upon engagement and interaction not just likes.

If you use a Facebook competition app it is many easier for you to communicate on how to  enter, what the competition rules are and how the winner will be notified, and to release Facebook from the competition.

Getting the right set up help you to get the right info so you can add more promo to the completion e.g. awarding the prizes to winners. It is another opportunity to share excitement around your business, product or brand.

Some Facebook competition  apps have such powerful viral capabilities built-in that can send  results through the roof in a way that is not possible by simple ‘like and share’ tactics.

So if you do not use a competition app to run your competitions you are losing out on marketing leverage and revenues big-time compared to just using a non compliant’ like the page’. The risks are that Facebook can close you down in an instant. Do you want your Facebook Page closed? Facebook is closing Facebook Pages daily, all around the world.

So get compliant with your Facebook Competitions. Make sure you set up your competitions with a competition app, and in a compliant way.  Here is more on the Facebook Competitions subject. Go earn well with Facebook! Enjoy your fans company even more!

.

YouTube Creator Academy Completion Certificate – Jenny Wilmshurst

A ‘YouTube Creator Academy Completion Certificate: Maximize Your Channel’ certificate was awarded to each student who completed YouTube’s inaugural video course. The course was completed in June 2013

It is worth your while going through the YouTube Creator Academy course yourself when YouTube runs these again.

You will learn what matters most to YouTube to rank, gain subscribers and produce a great channel.

Even after 18 months in YouTube masterminds I found this a good revision plus new learnings.

 

YouTube Academy 2013 Certificate June 2013

Facebook Claims 80% of Ad Clicks Come From Bots: Forbes

“FaceBook ‘Investigating’ Claims That 80% of Ad Clicks Come From Bots” is Forbes ‘headline.

No this is not sensationalism.

Over at Wired, Liat Clark reports that other advertisers have also noticed that Facebook’s analytics are behaving a little bit suspiciously. Limited Run decided to ditch FaceBook after another unfavorable interaction, where it claims that Facebook refused to let it change its name unless it paid $2,000 a month in advertising.’

More of Forbes back story:

‘We already knew that FaceBook ads aren’t as effective as some companies would like them to be, but it’s looking like a low-level of user engagement with advertising might be just the tip of the iceberg. A company called Limited Run is pulling its entire Facebook presence and leaving the social media giant with some unsavory accusationthat’s clouding the charge that up to 80 percent of clicks on its ads were coming from bots…

Advertising is always going to be one of FaceBook’s core revenue generators, but it’s had a hard time proving it can generate the sort of activity needed to justify advertisers spending significant amounts of money…’

CASE STUDY:
My most recent FaceBook advertising experience
is just another story along these lines.

So here is what I experienced recently.

For 8 weeks I ran a local marketing campaign series for a client.

  • I tested 48 ads
  • All were CPC where possible
  • These included promoted posts / sponsored ads, plus ads linking to the clients website (client’s instruction not my recommendation)

When I looked at the analytics: FaceBook Insights and Google Analytics the results were so far apart the I believe there was too much attrition to attribute to Google Analytics skews. (Why did I not use alternative analytics software? Budgets).

I am talking about FaceBook stats,with consequent billing being inflated by over $300 per $100 spent!

What happened when I asked FaceBook for feedback?

I was keen to understand what was happening. I was perplexed.

Yes I asked for their explanation as I was genuinely puzzled, and I received an inadequate response. FaceBook emailed a standard reply.

They did say that analytics software created differences in stats results. (That was not new to me. It was what I told them in my email enquiry!).

My next step? Get FaceBook to investigate.

The real impacts of this issue

This hits the advertisers’ back pocket.

Ouch!

Super Ouch when, for a business owner, this is the difference between being able to pay a  mortgage or put food on the table.

Such FaceBook charges combined with Facebook Ads’ ever decreasing effectiveness drives clients to cut back budgets severely and seek alternative lead generation avenues. Facebook needs to change its model to reinforce ad budget reinvestment behaviours through positive results.

Who can justify a 300-400% difference?

Neither FaceBook or Google I am sure.

  • So if the FaceBook Insights are correct, then then FaceBook ads could be performing 300-400% less efficiently than their history proclaims.
  • If FaceBook Insights are incorrect, then they are overcharging or charging for hits not received (despite the FaceBook Insights reports)

I wonder where else the problem could originate from.

What do you think?

No matter where the problem originates, this is an unnacceptable difference, don’t you think? What have you experienced?

You can read the story and my comments on Forbes

Example of How to Use Social Influence in Social Media Marketing

An example of how to use Social Influence in Social Media Marketing is from Peer Index recently.

Their client: Cold Play and Cold Play’s Movie Distributor.

Peer Index researched key Social Media Influencers for specific categories.

It looks like music and entertainment was one as well as various online influence.

I co-own a DJ company, we have direct relationships with global influencers and musicians who are household names, influence in the technology sectors and are vocal pioneers in Social Media.

This campaign was conducted in various cities in 61 countries globally.

Then Peer Index used the subscriptions of those already registered with them to communicate about Cold Play’s latest move release.

Here is what they emailed me:

Then claiming the perk leads to a landing page:

Jenny Wilmshurst - Peer Index local influencers premiere Cold Play!

Then you claim your free poster of an awesome, highly visual concert and buy a ticket to view the première at your most local participating cinema.

I saw that a local peer who is also into music was IDed.

Cold Play’s goals? Tactics?

Following the motto ‘Flattery will get you everywhere?’

Get people talking about the movie? counting on those chuffed enough to be ID’ed as an influencer to spread the message as a result?

Maybe! Do you reckon it worked?

Well I like what they did if only from a technical email marketing viewpoint, let alone from a Social Media buzz viewpoint.

What do you think of their strategy & tactics?

Now it is your turn.

How could you copy Peer Index’s example and use their strategy and tactics to your advantage in your business?

Proof of Social Media Capability: Social Media Influence

Proof of Capability is a natural thing for any potential client to request.

In Social Media there are a number of measures  of capability.

One is ‘Influence’.

Influence is borne of having key connections, relationships, fans, followers;

as well as being a peer of influencers;

and of influencing others who influence others.

 

It is also the result of creating orignial content, posting highly relevant content on a regular basis that influences the right people.

This content needs to be posted across a number of Social channels to be truly effective and to grow the influence score.

The content may be in several categories as you see in Tweet Twins chart here.

 

How do we determine who is a Social Media ‘Influencer’?

One of the Social Media tools (among several) is Peer Index.

Peer Index independently ranks a variety of factors to score influence.

 

As an example, here is a screenshot of one of their reports. This is Tweet Twins’ influence. It is Peer Index Social Influence score:

Peer Index Tweet Twins Jenny Wilmshurst

Facebook Contest Rules Checklist

Facebook Contest Rules & Checklists – updated 15/08/13

are a boon for building fan bases, rewarding existing fans and developing engagement, so I discovered today while checking out the requirements for a client.

In addition to checking out the Facebook ToS about Competitions, Sweepstakes, Promotions and the like, this is a summary of what you need to know:

THE FACEBOOK CONTEST MUST DO’S

  • You MUST administer ALL contests, promotions, and sweepstakes on Facebook using a third-party application and never use the Facebook platform such as your Page wall, the Events app, Groups or any other Facebook functionality to run your promotion. Note that a third-party application also includes any applications you create yourself.
  • Each entrant must release Facebook of any liability. This is acknowledgment that the promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.
  • You MUST have clearly defined contest rules that are visible directly on your application Page.
  • Participants MUST know and acknowledge that they any information given for the contest is given to your business, not Facebook.
  • The contest MUST have its own registration or entry form.

THE FACEBOOK CONTEST MUST NOT DO’S

  •  Facebook’s tools CAN’T be used for the contest, meaning you cannot encourage participants to enter by “liking” a page or using check-in.
  • You also CAN’T require contestants to use FB features to be eligible (e.g., no requesting photo or video uploads, likes, wall posts, check-ins).
  • The like button CAN’T be used as a voting mechanism or registration process.
  • You CAN’T use Facebook’s like, share, comment button to enter, nor use the photos/videos tab as a voting mechanism/registration for a promotion.
  • You CAN’T notify or contact winners inside Facebook (via direct messaging, chat, posting on the winner’s wall or posting on your own Page wall).
  • You CAN’T choose a fan for a random draw since this means that you would use Facebook to collect entries unless you do it somehow through a third-party application.

THE FACEBOOK CONTEST CAN DO’S

  • You CAN upload photos or videos for a contest but it needs to be done via a third-party application and not through the default Facebook photo/video tab on your Page.
  • You CAN have users like your Page, check into a Place, or connect to your app before entering your promotion as long as the promotion is administered through a third-party application and is not used as a voting mechanism or a registration for your promotion.
  • You CAN collect names and emails from the contestants. This is actually recommended especially for the purpose of contacting the winner(s). This doesn’t give you the right to add email addresses to your mailing list unless you specifically include it in your terms and allow for opting out. 
  • You CAN promote a contest on your Facebook page…”as long as there’s no requirement to do anything on Facebook; e.g., like your page, comment, upload content, etc. You can simply post a link on your page to the contest. And, to be fully safe, I would also include this disclosure, This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.”
  • Mari Smith suggests “…provided you comply with the rule to use an app to run the contest, you CAN use all the Facebook features to promote the contest, whether ads, wall posts, adding milestones, pinning to the top etc”.

(Courtesy of Flowtown Social Media Examiner & Social Media Today)

FACEBOOK CONTEST APPS

Some of the useful apps you will find are useful for ensuring compliance and communicating the before, during and after the promo are:

  • Woobox
  • Shortstack
  • Wilfire
  • Lujure (aka as Heyo – since October 2012):
  • Pagemodo
  • North Social
  • Contest Domination

You will also need to set up a Facebook Ad Campaign and / or a database. For this you will need graphics, an email campaign and other plans in place to maximise the promo..

Be sure to read Facebook’s Page Guidelines , Ad Guidelines , and Platforms Policies

There is a risk of losing a Facebook Page by not complying with these.

What I am discovering is a grey area in certain circumstances e.g. where Facebook Ads promote a prize draw on a url away from Facebook at a website, or where prize draws for those who already book and pay for a service goes. I am seeking more answers on this one. Facebook’s guidelines are not straightforward. Many a Social Media Consultant is finding this!

Some other posts you will find helpful are:

YOUR NEXT STEP WITH FACEBOOK MARKETING:

GET STARTED WITH FACEBOOK COMPETITONS OR FACEBOOK ADS

Good Contest Planning and Facebook Ads know how are essential for your results. Facebook is ever changing.

For a Facebook Competition Audit or sessions and planning to set up compliant Facebook Competitions,

or to fix your non-compliant Facebook Competitions

email me at jenny@tweettwins.co.nz

or call Jenny on 021 1221 541.

What has been happening?

Wow this year has flown by so fast…

So much has changed online (nothing new with that!), but it ramps up the pace we need to keep tabs on this change. Have you suffered from overload? So we have had graphic format changes to Linkedin Personal profiles have upgraded and Company Profiles are about to (November 2012) , Twitter (September), YouTube (January 2012), Facebook (February 2102). There is a massive range of apps & tools. All online marketing methods are under constant test and review.

Since 2010 I’ve been keenly watching the changes occurring in the Local Marketing and Mobile Marketing space beyond text messaging. With rapid uptake of a variety of screen sizes e.g. tablets in the mix with mobiles &  laptop, all website owners need to get their websites mobile friendly.

Each year, at least once a year, event managers ask me to deliver on topics of ‘What is the Next Big Thing’. This year was no exception. So I was able to give a hint at what I and a global mastermind group have tested since October 2011. We have been working in the areas of Reputation Management, Local Video Marketing & Video SEO, Video Production, Local Marketing, Local Lead Generation, Google Plus Local.

I must say that I’ve seen many aspects look very simple to start with. However, in delving deeper, any ad agency, consultant serving clients could fall into traps. Apart from awareness of these SoLoMoVi options, this could be why there are so many not yet implemented by ad agencies, or marketers in NZ. Offshore the opportunity is at its rise of uptake amongst online consultants. A wee note. In NZ there is mention of Reputation Management. Generally in NZ,  I’ve seen it offered as offline reputation  management or a very embryonic online version rather than the full scope.

The highlights of 2012 presentations this year were to NZ’s marketers and online sector on Social Local Mobile Video (#SoLoMoVi); to a group of Christians who want to support each others’ businesses (the topic of blending faith with commerce, co-operation, collaboration and communication).

Another highlight was in delivering a 12 week series at NZ’s largest university, Massey University, on ‘Social Networks for Business’.

We covered much ground beyond the usual suspect: Social Media Marketing. It was a pleasure to deliver concepts I hold dear, on Social Business aka Whole-of-Business Social Media, Business 2.0, Enterprise 2.0. Its content included extremely strategic aspects of the 13 stages of on boarding a company with Social Media; how to use collaboration, communication, co-operation, and change management to support a company to its next metamorphosis. As a practical application of the course content, students set up blogs, and co-operated in supporting each others blogs. Plus they also role played scenarios of persuading a ‘stuck boss’ to adopt Social Media within the entire business.

As a special ‘going away present’, the last session before exams included the interaction with recent, avante garde & futuristic technologies that many are unaware of, yet hold great marketing potential. The students thought that the subject was going to be a breeze due to their use of Facebook. It didn’t take long before they realised the course was more demanding than Facebook friending & posting!

The upshot is that much of my time has been spent in micro-market Social Media rather than mainstream Social Media. Micro groups sharpen skills and knowledge sharing. What does this mean to you, or to the blog? Resultant work has required experimentation and research. Not a day goes by that I need to research up to 10, 20, 30 topics a day to support client work or update skills and knowledge.  So I’ve been time poor as far as supporting this blog goes. So what I’ve decided is that I need to share more short snippets of discovery in this blog. You will benefit by seeing relevant content I’m leveraging with or from. It could save you time and effort.

How to identify a Domain Name Scam … who really is asking you for money!

Phishing scams seem to exist everywhere. As we become more involved and integrated online it becomes important to not unwittingly approve a phishing scam invoice or order. What might appear genuine is simply a scam.

Often it is not until you use a few forensic tools and data matching that you suddenly realise that you could be easily ripped off. Conversely are your genuine activities, brand etc viewed as genuine or mistaken as a scamming, or worst still, has someone adopted your brand, profile and passing off as you.

The ability to be able to verify potential orders and customers you receive as a supplier from online is a vital skill you all need to know.

Today I received a domain name registration order for a domain I own that I normally renew direct with the registrar for $US9.95.  So when I saw this email asking me to renew for $US75 from an unfamiliar name I knew immediately this was a scam, so I thought I would dig deeper.

A point to note is that this url is due for renewal at the end of July so for the unsuspecting they could be easily caught out. The fact that they state 28 June as a non action deadline is a give away to the savvy online administrator.

The first detail I immediately noticed that it was an IN domain ..hmm first give away… an Indian domainl url.  The second was the domain itself ORDERTRACKING76777 which gives me a hint of a automated set up design to cream those who thought they were registering with their original domain name registrar. So next up was to check who owned ORDERTRACKING76777.IN  A quick check revealed Alan S in Arizona was the registrant who secured this domain a few days ago 10-Jun-2012 21:03:57 UTC. A check of the zip code is for the city of Glendale. However despite postal address and tel phone number provided I am going to guess this email did not originate out of Glendale, Arizona. So since I am writing this post as I research this scam give me a minute and I will check the email server route… my guess it did not originate out of the Arizona..so lets see. For clarity I placed the link that was hyperlinked on the “process secure payment” for your viewing. … back in a  minute.

Well as suspected the email originates out of Union City, Tennessee. A further check identifies that the email may well have originated near this location … ,2114 E Old Troy Rd, Union City, TN 38261 Checking the actual address using forensics can vary to achieve 100% accuracy using public tools due to server locations, firewalls etc. However it does give an indicator.

Next up is to check the telephone number and to see where it is registered to. Now one could simply call the number and ask, however we will see what forensics will tell us. So after checking the  Area tel code 602 is registered for Glendale, so that does match the postal address.  Next if we check the owner of the email address .. now this can be telling by what it does not tell us and in this case the email address is a free yahoo address  .. as alans5122@yahoo.com which means unless we are Yahoo we can not check who operates this, even-so a red alert comes on as the Registrant knows it can not be easily traced.

Next we check the persons name and the company name that is stated as owning this domain. So a good give away is that the Surname is “S.” Now after checking the company name on the State of Arizona;s company database there is no company registered as AS Marketing LLC, so in likelyhood that this person is passing off as a registered scammer front and is not a legal entity as such. A criminal case of breaking the law.

Now at this point I thought we would do the obvious and visit the url http://www.ORDERTRACKING76777.IN and see if my estimation todate matches what we find …so lets go have a look…..hmmm … The fact I can not find the company on the Arizona company database and it is a IN domain my alarm bells are ringing very loud. My first siren is ringing as there is no such web site as www.ORDERTRACKING76777.IN  So since the url is (DO NOT CLICK ON IT) http://ordertracking76777.in/order/NrHxLewmne3UqNt5PlhG1A%3D%3D raises significant doubts as to what page it will land on. So whether the site is a scammers url order cart or simply drops a virus onto my computer we will never know. The question I ask myself why does a USA company not use .com when it is available … makes me smell a rat.

Now in reviewing IN …Wikipedia states ...Before the more liberal policies for the .in domain, only 7000 names had been registered between 1992 and 2004. As of March 2010, the number had increased to over 6.1 lakh, with 60% of registrations coming from India, rest from overseas.[1] This domain is popular for domain hacks.

Now for the benefit of the Search Engines and any one else who received the email I have include the body text so they might come across this posting.

Registration includes SE submission for ULTIMATEINTERNETINTERVIEWS.COM for 12 months. There is no obligation to pay for this order unless you complete your payment by Jun 28, 2012. SE Services provides submission services and search engine ranking organization for domain owners. This offer for submission services is not required to renew your domain registration.

Failure to complete your search engine registration by Jun 28, 2012 may result in the cancellation of this order (making it difficult for your customers to locate you using search engines on the web).

So overall this email when checked against my partial checklist fails on every account.

Now imagine this – If this company was actually genuine and simply over ambitious is getting you to renew with them they fail in every category. Even if they got 50% pass it raises serious doubts as to doing any business with them and would you actually get the SEO service.  So the question every company should ask itself how do you know if that $5000 order is genuine of a scam, or that inquirer is very genuine but just not ready to reveal their full identity with their initial inquiry.

Almost as a joke they state the email compiles with the Anti spam laws…. providing a link to unsubscribe …which just so happens to be the same as the renew link.

If you need this type of forensic service for  emails you receive I can offer the service. Rates according to work required.

Contact Kevin Andreassend on +64-9-4142348

LinkedIn Hacked – Change Your Password

The word is that LinkedIn has been hacked, with  6.5 million  accounts at risk.

So change your LinkedIn password NOW!

If you want more information you can also get the latest at Linkedin’s blog http://blog.linkedin.com/2012/06/06/linkedin-member-passwords-compromised/

Formerly some content on this post included a bitly link and a link to a well-known web marketing site – Last Pass.

A website developer has requested that I supply the links previously posted here without tracking links, and to remove a paragraph referring to Last Pass’s website.

The developer immediately sent information to an email list falsely saying they were phishing links, without checking sources or  ringing me to verify, or even researching. He is rectifying the damage he has caused by the false accusation.

If you have any queries or problems you are welcome to ring me. My contact details are on this blog.

Posted by Jenny Wilmshurst

Which Internal Collaboration Tools are Ideal for a Company

Today a student asked me whether FaceBook could be used as a company collaboration tool. She was exploring how to create an internal collaboration space for a company’s members to interact together. The idea was to use an online space that team members could talk openly, away from clients and competitors’ eyes and ears.

It got me thinking about a range of needs of various company sizes.

If you want absolute simplicity and are a small company, you could use:

  • LinkedIn Groups set to private (LI is setting itself up as a collaboration site)
  • Facebook Groups (set to private)
  • Skype (if you want sharing of learnings with a focus on conversation, and real-time sharing, with a low need for document sharing)
  • Blog

If you want more range of tools available within the platform, increased functionality to collaborate and / or may be a mid-sized company, options that may suit are:

  • LinkedIn Groups
  • Ning
  • Yammer
  • Wiki

If you are a large company or need maximum, Enterprise level functionality:

  • LinkedIn Groups
  • Ning
  • Yammer
  • Wiki
  • other specifically developed Social Enterprise Networking / Internal collaboration tools
  • IBM, Oracle Microsoft collaboration tools e.g. Sharepoint

Your choice of tool will depend on what the purpose is, the future use, and current needs, ability to scale as your  company grows or as collaboration grows. Here are some ideas to :

Before you decide what tool you will use, you would need to explore and decide what:

  1. Purpose of the tool
  2. Current needs
  3. Future needs and ability to scale with growth of use and growth of the company
  4. Type of information / media needs that will shared and in what kind of format (e.g. podcasts, webinars, pdfs, Slideshare / Powerpoint, Q & A, info dumping, market feedback, best practice, social events etc).
  5. Functionality you need eg. discussion only? ease of searching for old discussions and data? ability to download / upload?

There are many examples of these being used in New Zealand and offshore:

  1. Chapman Tripp, an NZ law firm,  uses Facebook internally
  2. Microsoft lead developers uses blogs to communicate new developments
  3. Telstra Clear NZ favours LinkedIn Groups (private) as a communication tool
  4. Banks, airlines are using a range of Social Media tools for internal communications, not just marketing

What questions do you have about internal collaboration?

Explain Social Media Tools in Simple English

‘Explain Social Media Tools in Simple English’ could be exactly what you are looking for if sometimes other explanations get too complex.

A few analogies came across my computer today that I thought might help you to get an idea of the most commonly used tools are.

From Lets Get Social:

Social Media Explained inSiomple English 2012

 

From  an article that untangles Social Media concepts :

LinkedIn – an online Chamber of Commerce, Trade Show, or place where business people meet.

Twitter – Party or Dance

Facebook – Potluck/Picnic/Backyard Barbecue

Youtube – Your own free TV Shown or Channel

 

What ways have you heard Social Media described in simple terms?

Amplifying the Genius within Organizations

Amplifying the Genius within Organizations

This is a big area of opportunity Social Media offers, far beyond marketing. Ponder, then tell me what do you think?

Are you tired of hearing the coercion to join the Social Media way?

Do the reasons for accepting Social Media not yet fit well with your ideas of business?

Let’s cast aside the apprehensions of risks, any objections and biases, and take a look at other ways your business could effectively leverage Social Media?

Let’s look at the problems your business experiences daily. Perplexing problems can be explored and solved a new way that gets the best out of your employees.

So, now let’s take a mind shift to think about possibilities from an another angle?

If your business could tap into the genius of its employees, what kind of dynamic outcomes could be achieved? What kind of growth? What kind of collaboration and business transformation would result?

If employees willingly collaborated to build a better business and tap into the genius within – what would your business be like? from an employee how could it change? How would you bottom line win even greater? What efficiencies could result?

What if a highly engaged team leveraged their work daily with a range of tools that moved all financial and non-fnancial KPI’s positively?

The real values of Social Media are not necessarily marketing focussed. They are borne of the need to solve a real business problem. It requires a valid solution.  To be truly effective, it requires leveraging the new ways to do business, melded with the old that you are so familiar with.

Therefore Social Media is NOT:

  • an add-on to digital
  • an add-on to marketing
  • is not even necessarily silo’ed to marketing

but instead it is a melded set of concepts, ethos and tools. They  meet the needs of a well founded business problem or purpose.The ethos of Social Media is so pervasive it is about facilitating culture change.

13 ways to see the business value of Social Media beyond Sales, Marketing, Customer Services and PR:

  1. Collaboration employee engagement –  your employee ‘community’ solves problems, save time
  2. Recruitment – talent sourcing, credibility checks, outsourcing offshore  (e.g. Philipines)
  3. HR – empower staff, genius tapping, internal comms efficiency
  4. Security / Online Forensics – NZ exporters already  use Social Media to verify global leads from scammers
  5. Research – New developments research & real time trend sourcing
  6. Problem solving – externally crowdsourced, collaborative problem solving (21st century focus groups), community ‘advisory board’
  7. Supplier sourcing – global just-in-time manufacturing suppliers aid NZ businesses
  8. Transport Logistics e.g. AA Geosmart traffic reports aid transport companies with real-time traffic route data, saving money and time
  9. Franchise territory mapping – AA GeoSmart Geolocation data software helps franchisors map territories accurately & fairly
  10. Crowd source product design
  11. Facilitate  product testing  
  12. Fundraising – Not for Profits
  13. Medical collaborative communities and ‘wikis’ to share medical information and resolve rare disease issues e.g. Univita

Every one of these areas could have potential advantage and disadvantage, depending how it is executed. However it opens our minds to the potential for a business to see the value of Social Media beyond marketing. A business life of Social Media beyond the key 5 Social Media tools. A business life with a whole new way to regenerate itself and see its culture expressed in a fresh way.

The catalyst of inspiration for my thinking was in 2009. A group of 30 or 40 Senior Exectives from well branded companies met to workshop ‘What if a bank were to be community led, how would it conduct itself?’

That is all we were briefed wtih and it was up to us to decide the valid considerations. We examined

  • what the community’ & bank partnership experience would be like
  • how the interests of the businesses and bank would build a co-operative client-led, market-led service range
  • we would all be businesses who are also financial stakeholders in the bank’s shareholdings, lending and profit-sharing
  • being both stakeholders and clients, the clients would have a vested interest to mutually support (with a powerful reason for buyer loyalty) through its peer community
  • the loyalty would pave the way for greatest potential of lender repayment, business sales and growth potential.

Then we looked at the Best Buys concept of building a powerful internal collaboration. The ethos from that, pervaded  the organization into a strong customer service way of ‘being’, not just ‘doing’. The collaboration culture was embedded.

As I’d experienced first hand – the value of Social Media beyond marketing, this workshop experience got me thinking about whole-of-organisation Social Media – Enterprise 2.0 thinking and being. I gave it a risky label – ‘holistic Social Media’. It stuck on my LinkedIn profile for many many months until someone made comment that it was too idealistic to be accepted, understood and in fact could be misunderstood too easily.

Regardless I’ve invested several years looking at the impact on organisations, culture change, on boarding of Social Media and the mental hoops CEOs go through before adopting Social Media.

What positive potential do you see to adopt Social Media in an organisation beyond a marketing perspective?

In your business?

What risks do you see?

Written by Jenny Wilmshurst, TweetTwins Social Media – Social Media Speaker and Consultant

Other articles of interest regarding Social Media ROI, Social Business:

3 Common Social Media Sucess Myths Debunked- truth time

Social Media ROI Calculator

What is Holistic Social Media Consulting?

Holistic Social Media Social Commerce Social ROI

Power Up Social Business: Social Media Debate