As a social media professional, I am always seeking ways to make more efficient use of my time. I belong to a couple of forums and groups that often discuss free tools or low-cost options. I would like to share a compiled list here with you:
Hootsuite – one of my faves – up to 5 social media accounts for free, up to 20 for $5.99 per month
If This Then That - will help you do just that with about 11 social platforms – ex. if [Twitter mention] then [thank them] – will work with Facebook pages.
Buffer – share your posts at a later time on any Twitter account or Facebook personal pages
Dreamstime – free photos for use in your materials – they also have photos for purchase.
DIIGO – similar to Dropbox for websites you want to save for later – lets you bookmark in a cloud favorites by keyword. You can even highlight things, place sticky notes on pages and share it with connections.
FanTools – the free side lets you set up one Twitter and one Facebook page, upgrades available for planning, coupons and deals.
YouSendIt – sending large files through email is no longer a problem, use YouSendIt. You upload, the receiver downloads. You must stay under a size limit for it to remain free.
Morgue File – more free photos. Has a connection with Dreamstime.
CutePDF – makes pdf files for any of your printable documents for programs that don’t already convert them.
Google Docs, Calendar, mail, keyword tools, alerts, analytics, insights for search – access docs that you share, share with others, check your calendar, multiple email accounts from you desktop, phone, or laptop, find what keywords you need to use, set up alerts for anything you want to track from the web and blogs, add analytics to your website and track traffic to your site, .
Manage your Customer Service and Reputation all at once!
Once upon a time, I worked for Spencer Gifts. Part of the training package for new employees was a cartoon video that talked about customer service. The video talked about how customers experience Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt when it comes to making certain purchases. Having good customer service can help overcome the “FUD” factor.
The training continued with data that told us that a happy customer will tell 2 people, while a dissatisfied customer will tell 10 people. This was in the days before cell phones! Ten people spreading news about your business could ultimately damage your business’ reputation. So, customer service and reputation were tied together at the hip. But who are we kidding, customer service and reputation have almost always been tied together.
Enter social media. Tho days of someone who is dissatisfied telling 10 people number has now multiplied by hundreds, thousands or millions. Depending upon the audience of the person who is posting, how active or passionate about a topic the followers are, a simple statement can raise up an item or make it crash and burn. That is how virility with a YouTube video, Facebook post or Tweet gets going.
Remember this story – United breaks Guitar – turned out alright after the fact Read more. But that video and example is used quite a bit in how customer service and responsiveness are so much more important now, then ever before. There are now over 14 million views of the YouTube video of an event that happened in 2009. All someone has to do is create a video, share it on their social media channels, and have a couple of key people share the posts before something spins out of control.
If you need to know more about managing your customer service and reputation through social media, check back. I will cover reputation management in my next article.
Do you know what the best social media tools are for your business?
At a networking event recently, I had my 60 second commercial to give. I asked two questions –
What is the best social media tools for your business?
If you have time to do only one social media thing what would it be?
One person said it depends on your business. I countered with “for your business”.
The answer to the first question is dependent upon what type of business you have. Each of us have a different audience and a different product. Some of us market to other businesses, hence, B2B. Others market to consumers or B2C. Depending upon which type of customer you have depends upon which are the best social media tools for you to use. You can discover more in my series of articles on B2B vs. B2C social media marketing. Once you have determined which one(s) is right for your business, include them in your overall marketing plan.
The second question is a bit of a trick question. Where should you invest your time if you could only spend it on one social platform? My answer is write a blog article. The caveat is that it must be attached to your website like this one is attached to mine. I use WordPress as my platform. My blog is considered self-hosted. This helps your website work because it adds new content on a regular basis to your website. If you are regularly writing posts (regular is different for everyone, but my definition is at least twice a month), the search engines return to your site, find new information, and index your site higher in the search results for your related search terms. Writing a blog also helps demonstrate your subject matter expertise and shows visitors to your website that you are staying current on your industry.
If you have the time to expand into other social media tools, you have automatic items to share from your blog. It becomes a win-win!!
Give me a call, send an email, or reach out on social media, if I can help you establish the best social media tools for your social marketing efforts.
I have been writing some help-guides for using social media and job search for Illinois workNet. I won’t steal their thunder, but I want to point out a few key items that showed up on almost every sheet that I created.
Job search and social media do not exclusively mean LinkedIn.
Many of the other platforms have very relevant considerations for boosting your job search.
Some platforms make more sense to find jobs.
When you are in job search mode, you are creating a brand – YOURS. Be sure that you are making a positive impact for your brand on your social media platforms.
Be consistent with your brand appearance – icon, images, voice.
Participate regularly. The number one rule of marketing is your Brand/name has to be remembered. People will not remember your name if it isn’t in front of them regularly.
Search – use the search function of the platform to find information about companies to which you are applying. You will also want to look at company culture and values to help you make a decision about applying or accepting positions.
Status updates need to include two different elements:
Let your connections know that you are in job search mode in a positive manner. NEVER bad mouth your former employer.
Let your connections know that you have the beat on your industry by sharing thoughts and articles that are useful and informative.
If you need to know more of the specifics of the hand-outs I wrote, I encourage you to join the Illinois Virtual Job Club Network. We will be sharing the handouts there over the next few weeks.
Take some time to participate in the Hands-on LinkedIn Workshop!
When was the last time you spent any time on your LinkedIn profile? There have been a number of changes recently. Take this time to help yourself better understand a few things to make LinkedIn work better for your business.
Bring your laptop! We will:
work on your profile to make sure it will be found with a keyword search;
show you how to maximize your exposure; and,
give you direction on how to warm-up cold leads.
Interested? Here are the details:
October 30, 2014 8-10AM
1155 Bowes Rd
Elgin, IL 60123
Reply Don’t Accept Yet – LinkedIn feature is still there!
I don’t know about you, but I receive a number of invitations from people that I haven’t met. I don’t mind expanding my network through LinkedIn connections, but I try to tag my connections so know where the invitations are coming from is very helpful.
Before LinkedIn changed it’s invitations features, yet again, there was an option to “Reply don’t accept yet” to the person that sent the invitation. I thought this feature was lost forever, the same way that many other useful features, like polls, events, and questions have – gone the way of the Dodo bird. But I have good news to report!
Reply don’t accept yet is still a useful and available LinkedIn Feature!!! Watch this short video to see where you can find it. Or follow the directions below.
Need a step by step? Here are the directions:
1. Hover over the icon for messages
2. A drop-down box will open with Messages from People to whom you are connected. Click on the word Messages.
3. You Message Inbox will open. Select Invitations. A list of your invitations will show.
4. Click the down arrow next to “Accept” and the option for “Reply Don’t Accept yet” shows. Click that selection and send the potential connection a message. I use the following:
Please refresh my memory of how we may have met. I like to tag my connections for future reference.
That is the one way I can control how I organize my connections. It is really useful for finding people at a later time.