Coffee Shops or Social Media

I am a huge advocate of social media.  That is stating the obvious, since it is how I make a living. While saying that, I need to say it is not the only tool you should use to market your business or is it? This Forbes article struck a chord with me.Why Social Media Isnt Doing For Us What Londons Coffee Houses Did For 17th Century – Forbes.

According to the article, using social media may help you spark the creativity and gain the new Time2Mrkt New Ideasideas that you need to be more effective on your job. That is what the coffee houses of the 17th century did. The coffee houses were bemoaned as a waste of time, much like people bemoan Facebook or Pinterest calling them and social media in general a time-sucking black hole. But, how many times have you found the answer or the spark for something that you needed on one of the social media platforms? How often do you turn to YouTube for the how-to of something you need to accomplish or learn? I would have to say frequently.

Today in the coffee houses, most people have their faces glued to a device of some sort, so it makes it next to impossible to strike up a conversation with a stranger. Unless you are attending a networking event, you may not meet anyone new or be able to get the spark of creativity. For people like me that work independently, we need a resource for brainstorming. Sometimes I turn to groups on LinkedIn, sometimes, I float around on Pinterest or Houzz for construction ideas. I receive a number of e-news letters that sometimes give me the spark to write an article like this one.

Where does your inspiration come from?

B2B vs B2C – Enews

B2B vs B2C – Enews marketingB2BvsB2Cenews

Last in our series of articles on social marketing for B2B vs. B2C is Enews.

People who purchase smart phones have a variety of reasons why they buy a smartphone but the important one for this article is that 78% of people use it to check email. 1 By 2017, the percent of smartphone users is expected to reach 68 percent. 2 More email is read Mobile than on a desktop email client. Stats say 47% of email is now opened on a mobile device Litmus –”Email Analytics” (April 2014) So what do all of these things tell you?

For a long time, email newsletters had gone out of vogue. Nobody was reading them because they were inundated with emails of all types.  With the onset of Facebook, G+ and Twitter, people had other ways to communicate. Now that means that emails might have a “meatier” purpose.

While some might argue that emails aren’t social media, you can share links to your e-news on social media.  It is a great way to share a number of items from a variety of areas in one platform, sort of like a “Best of” compilation. AND, as the statistics show, your subscribers are more likely to read them now from their mobile device. That means that you must ensure that they are reactive to any email platform.

B2B

Share offers, news, product information, links to blog articles, places you are exhibiting or speaking, and workshops you are offering. This is also a great way to promote any partnership efforts – for example, one of your clients is offering a product or service that might be valuable to your customers. My suggestion is at least once a month or someone may forget that they subscribed and overlook your newsletter.

B2C

Share offers, upcoming new features, community news, helpful tips related to your industry, how-tos, links to your blog, coupons, pictures of happy customers, and more.  One warning to B2C is regulate the number of times you send an email to avoid overloading your subscribers in-box. You don’t want to cause someone to unsubscribe because you are oversharing.

Both

For both B2B and B2C, it is important to time your enews to avoid being overlooked. One article I read said Sunday afternoon. 3 Others will tell you more emails are sent during the week than on weekends, with Tuesday and Thursday being the highest volume days. Changing which day you send your emails may improve your open and click rates. 4 No matter what, do some testing on times and then check your statistics to find out when your subscribers open your emails the most.

 

Why | Blogs | LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter | Video
Google | Image | Pinterest | Location Sites | E-news

  

B2B vs B2C – Images

B2B vs B2C – Images

Continuing our B2B vs B2C discussion, our topic in this post is Image sites. The biggest names include Instagram, Flickr, Picasa and Pinterest.  Pinterest is big enough to warrant it’s own post, it will be next.

People are very visual. When I read the paper or a magazine, I scan the headlines, look for B2B vs B2C - imagesimages and if either of those things grab my attention, then I might read into the article a bit further or the whole thing. A picture draws the attention of a reader – that could be why picture books are so popular with small children.  They can’t read the words yet, but bright colors and imagery draw their attention.

Image sites all  you to have images posted, sometimes into photo albums that may (or should) include backlinks to your website.  According to an article from MediaPost, 70% of all interactions on social media sites now involve pictures.

How can that help your business?

B2B – Many vendors will post images of their products so that businesses that purchase will see the item. Consider showing the item in “action”. Share images of company events, participation at trade shows, or internal employee recognition occasions. Include links to images in your white papers and definitely in blog articles. Use images to announce new products, especially in press releases.

B2C – Image sites are much more suited to consumer sites. Take for example a restaurant or a bakery.  How many people post photos of themselves in a new outfit and take the store in an Instagram post. That is one of the reasons why Instagram now has 200 million users who have posted 60 million photos a day. Once you have found your platform of choice, encourage customers to share their photos and tag your business in them. While we didn’t mention Facebook as a photo platform, it is a huge player in images and probably one of the main reasons Instagram was snapped up. Share product images, people enjoying your products or services and participation at community events.

In my opinion, the clear winner in this category is B2C.

Why | Blogs | LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter | Video
Google | Image | Pinterest | Location Sites | E-news

 

B2B vs B2C – Google

B2B vs B2C – Google

In the continuing discussion about the better platforms for B2B vs B2C – Google+ is next up.  Google+ has seen more than a 58% increase in users over the past 9 months. AnB2BvsB2Cgoogle article from October indicates there are over 300 million users with 1/3 of them in active mode. One of the things about creating a Gmail account is that you automatically get a G+ account. When you have a Gmail account, you connect with all of the other Google services, +, YouTube, Hangouts, Drive, Picasa, and on, and on. Google was a bit late to the game creating a “posting” platform, but with the power of a search engine behind it, Google+ gives you a huge opportunity if you choose to optimize a platform here.

B2B

Create your company profile and verify your “official” page. Share photos with links back to your website. Recommend links to your blog posts. Use analytics to look at traffic and leads. Use the Hangout function to hold long distance training or brainstorm with colleagues in out of town offices or clients.

B2C

One of the benefits of Google+ and a brick and mortar location is the map functionality. While G+ is not quite as robust to the consumer as Facebook, the ability to post photos, have images related to your business and reviews about your business may help drive business through your doors. If you have a G+ local business page, you get much more real estate on a search results page. Verify your address to have that show up.

No matter which business type you have, you may want to consider establishing a G+ account and putting up a few posts. Engage with others as you can by sharing posts and +1ing posts from others.

Why | Blogs | LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter | Video
Google | Image | Pinterest | Location Sites | E-news

B2B vs B2C – Facebook

B2B vs B2C – Facebook

When we are discussing the difference for B2B vs B2C – Facebook, we need to understand the sheer number of users on Facebook make it a necessity to own your real estate on the B2B vs B2C Facebook - Time2Mrktsocial media platform. Facebook is more like a backyard barbecue.  You invite friends because you like to socialize with them, co-workers because you may have lunch with them, and family (sometimes because you have to).

B2B – the usefulness of Facebook for you depends upon whether you can share information that someone may search. If you can, share industry related information, product updates, announcements, pictures of products with links back to your website. Work to build brand awareness. AND use it to highlight customer service.

B2C – Facebook is a phenomenal tool for consumer based business.  Facebook continues to build in functionality for the consumer, but also has made it more difficult for people to see posts from business unless they interact regularly. Investigate special offers, discounts, ads, check-ins, quizzes, contests. Build brand awareness and work to send business through your door.  All you have to do is make sure that you are following the Facebook rules so that your business doesn’t suffer any consequences.