Lately, I’ve been getting requests from friends on how I’m using social media for business development. I have had multiple meetings to share these lessons.
First, I met with Matt “The Chin” Mangino, Eileen Flynn, George Chewning, Silvana Cremonini and some of their colleagues from Human Capital Alliance. I met with them virtually in an iWowWe online meeting. Here is some information about WowWe and how I’m using it to network, share information, and conduct virtual training.
Then, I met with Marc Schwartz, Donny Hornstein, and John Sklar at a nice little Jewish deli called Cindi’s in Dallas. See post on herding cats for a description of this meeting and what I learned.
Then, I met with Michael Chang and Gerry Grant at Starbucks. Michael and Gerry have a couple of online businesses. One of them is HogZillaLights.
Today, I met with John Vakidis at a fun new restaurant in Plano, TX called Whiskey Cake. John is involved with marketing at Franklin Covey.
John asked me if I would summarize some of the social media tools that I was using. He asked me to send him an email. I thought I would summarize it in a blog post for others who might benefit.
This blog post will describe my social media process. Feel free to ask questions and offer suggestions about what you are doing and what is working for you.
First, if you are new to Twitter and have not hit the 2000 (people you follow) limit yet, you should follow people who are the kind of target that will help you in your business. For example, Michael and Gerry with HogZillaLights should follow hunters. I initially followed people who were involved in training and development, led meetings, taught effective meetings, consulted, etc.
Once you hit the 2000 follower maximum, Twitter allows you to follow (People following you + 10%). In other words, if I have 5,000 followers, I can follow 5,500 people. Once you follow over 2000 people, it makes sense to unfollow the people who aren’t following you back. Every couple of weeks, I use JustUnfollow or Tweepi. I formerly used Justunfollow exclusively. Now I prefer Tweepi. Tweepi allows you to unfollow as many people as you want. JustUnfollow limits you to 50 unfollows per day. After you have unfollowed people who aren’t following you back, then you can follow more of your favorite target market. I follow the philosophy of, eliminate waste, add more good stuff (Click on Eliminate Waste, Add More Good Stuff) to view blog post.
In Facebook, I have 2 business pages and a personal page. One business page is MyMeetingPro , where I market several iPad and iPhone apps to run simple effective meetings. The other business page is The Center for Organizational Learning which is my corporate training company. Feel free to stop by and “like” the page. I always welcome visitors and people to learn with. When I create a new blog post, I use Hootsuite to post in multiple social networks, but more on that later.
I use two different tools to help me manage my social marketing. I use HootSuite and Socialoomph. I will describe each and tell you how each saves me time and increases efficiency.
In social media, don’t just repeat versions of “Hey…buy my stuff! Hey….buy my stuff”. If you do, you will be labelled a spammer and avoided. My philosophy is 70% value added content and 30% marketing messages. In Hootsuite, I pay $5.99/month for what I subscribe to. Here are the value added services that I get.
I am able to create an RSS feed for certain news in Yahoo. Ask yourself, “What type of followers am I trying to attract?” and “What news stories would these followers want to read?” I then
1. Go into Yahoo and click on news.
2. Search for relevant news.
3. Copy the RSS feed.
4. Paste it into Hootsuite, click on settings, RSS/Atom
5. Give it a hashtag so that it’s searchable in Twitter.
Waaaa Laaaaa, I know have an automated news service that is automatically sending out Twitter messages for relevant news that my followers want to read about. So there’s the 70% of value added content. You may want to read your own twitter messages as weird as that sounds. Tweak the feeds if they don’t sound natural.
I then create an Excel spreadsheet which includes links to blog posts, advertisements to stuff I’m promoting, etc. Hootsuite requires weird formatting of the entries. For example, today’s date of 9/25/2012 must be input as 25/09/2012 09:00 which means 9 am. 11:00 pm would be 23:00. I then upload 50-200 messages into my 4 Twitter accounts. I usually perform this activity once per week and queue one post per hour.
I use bitly as my url shortener as I create my Excel spreadsheet. The benefits of Bitly is that diagnostics are wrapped around every link. You can tell how many people click on each link. I usually get around 600 clicks per month. If I was to pay for that traffic, I would pay at least $500.00/month.
I use Socialoomph and I pay $3.90/month for what I use there. At Socialoomph, I use a direct message every time somebody follows me on Twitter. All followers are sent an automatic message inviting them to join me on my Facebook page. Socialoomph also puts new followers into a queue. I then decide whether to follow them back or not. I usually follow everyone who follows me with 2 exceptions.
1. I do not follow porn people
2. I do not follow back people where their descriptions or posts are not in English.
I also have set up twitter lists. I sort them into appropriate lists from the very beginning. My lists include things like training, consulting, facilitation, bloggers, authors, and marketers. Lately, lists that I also follow have turned up and I can add people to those lists. You might ask, what is the value of lists? Well….you can bring up a particular list and read only what people in this list are tweeting about.
Here are the ways you make friends on Twitter.
1. Follow them
2. Add them to lists.
3. Engage them in dialogue.
4. Add value.
5. Use #followfriday. Every friday, make a list of the people who have been most helpful to you and put them into a #followfriday post. I use Follow Friday Helper to save time with this activity.
I also am a big fan of Triberr. Triberr will help to amplify the reach of your blog posts. Here is the Triberr process.
1. Register with Triberr
2. Install the Triberr plug in into your WordPress blog
3. Get invited to join a tribe. Browse the tribes, find one you like, leave 3 comments on their blog posts, get invited by the chief.
4. Examine your tribal feed and read others’ blog posts.
5. Approve the ones you want.
6. Automatic twitter feeds go out with links to your tribal members posts.
7. Be sure and express appreciation to your tribal members. Remember to recognize the type of behaviors that you want and you’ll get more of them.
I’m a member of 10 tribes with a twitter reach of 11.6 million. I also have close to 16,000 twitter followers in 3 twitter accounts.
I have a Google Plus account and am regularly posting my blog posts. I follow people back as they follow me.
I also have a Linkedin account and belong to several Linkedin groups. I post information to these Linkedin groups and multiple social accounts all at once using Hootsuite.
I have created a few YouTube videos promoting MyMeetingPro
On this video, I used Prezi and Camtasia to create the following MyMeetingPro demonstration video with Takin Care of Business by Bachman Turner Overdrive playing in the background.
Once a week, I co-host a blog talk radio show with Dan Harley. We have a radio show that is hosted online. We have about 20 listeners live and have had up to 200 people download the podcast following the show. We are considering moving the show to another platform. By the way, I know a person who is considering creating an internet radio site. She might be open to partnerships.
What do you do and what is working?