SOCIAL IMMEDIATELY Connect, Share, Expand


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Social Media is the latest and greatest way to network, be it with clients, partners or potential sponsors. No matter what it’s about, it has a place in Social Media. This eBook is here to tell you where your content should go and why it should go there.

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SOCIAL IMMEDIATELY Connect, Share, Expand

  1. 1. Volume 3, 1 April 2012SOCIALIMMEDIAShare, Expand Connect, TELY
  2. 2. SOCIALIMMEDIATELY Connect, Share, Expand By Digital by Design Volume 3, 1 April 2012
  3. 3. CONTENTSINTRODUCTION 1START AT THE BEGINNING 1TONE 2- YOUR BLOG 2- FACEBOOK 3 - Basic status updates 3 - Multimedia status updates 4 - Pictures 4 - Links 4 - Facebook Ask 6 - Tabs 6- TWITTER 7 - Tweet 7 - Retweet 7 - Hashtag 8 - Tagging 9- YOUTUBE 10CONCLUSION 11
  4. 4. INTRODUCTIONSocial Media is the latest and greatest way to network, be it withclients, partners or potential sponsors. No matter what it’s about,it has a place in Social Media. This eBook is here to tell you whereyour content should go and why it should go there.CONNECT with friends, fans, colleagues, clients and the people that could take your business to the nextlevel.SHARE your passion. Post about the things that you love most about your company and what you do everyday. Let people know what drives you.EXPAND your contacts, your clients, your sales and ultimately, your business.START AT THE BEGINNING- Create a Social media accountFor the sake of those of you out there who would love to develop an online presence and get involved in theSocial Media way of life but are perilously clueless, here’s an overview of how to create an account on mostsocial media sites.VALID URL without your permis- resemble your birth you. There is often theThe first thing you do is sion and to provide name at all and can option of addingtype in the website’s you with the option of often involve numbers information about yoururl in order to go to the changing your pass- and punctuation marks. favourite movies, wheresite’s home page. If word safely in case Other users can find you you work, what kind ofyou don’t know the url, you forget it. If you do by your username and food you enjoy eating assimply search the not have a valid email all your activity on that well as a profile picturewebsite’s name on a address, settings one website will be linked to and other personal engine of your up is relatively similar the name you have The extent of this informa-choosing (e.g: to setting up a chosen. This is partially to tion can be determinedGoogle, Bing, Yahoo!, social media account. protect your privacy and purely by you so don’tetc.). partially to ensure that feel that you have to YOUR NAME each person who has an provide it when register-VALID EMAIL ADDRESS Most sites will require your account on the site has ing with a social mediaYou’re going to need full name. This is not so a unique name. All the website. You, ultimately,a valid email address. that they know who you better to manage your get to decide what goesThis is to ensure that an are and can monitor account data with, my on your profile and whatalternate avenue of your online activity. This is dear. doesn’t.communication simply to limit thebetween you and the number of fake BIRTH DATE PRIVACY SETTINGSsocial media site is accounts that are made Depending on the web- Every site gives you theavailable, to keep you in order to protect other site, you may have to option of customisingup-to-date on new users from spam and add additional informa- your privacy settings, indevelopments and inappropriate content. tion like your birth date. In order to ensure that youchanges, to send you some cases, this is to are only sharing informa-notifications and infor- USERNAME prevent young users tion about yourself withmation about your Some websites require from being exposed to the public at large thataccount and its that your account has a mature content. In other you are comfortableprogress and also as a username. This is simply a cases, it is simply to ‘flesh measure to name you choose for out’ your profile on thatlessen the risk of a yourself to use on that site site and give other userspassword change – it doesn’t have to more information about 1
  5. 5. There are finer details and points that differ from site-to-site – thisis simply a very basic overview of what creating a social mediaaccount involves.TONE Handle your online business with extreme careNo matter what you’re saying on any of your various Social media accounts, the way you say it willalways matter. The tone that you choose to communicate your message with can determine whowill respond to your post and who won’t, give any reader/viewer an impression of what your com-pany (and therefore your brand) is like, enable them to decide whether they want to give you theirbusiness or not and either broaden or restrict your online market.Words are important. The way you string them together is even more important. Subtle nuances inpreferred vocabulary and sentence structure do manage to communicate different messages andleave different impressions. Social media involvement is in no way a less-important or less-concreteform of advertising – the market for your social media activity can, in fact, be larger than the marketfor your offline means of advertising. Handle your online presence with the utmost care.Each social media site or platform has its own tone and its own unique means of communicating.We’re going to go into which site has which tone and which site you should use for communicatingwhich content.YOUR BLOG Regularly update your blogYour blog is going to be the place where you put your most extensive and professional social mediacontent.Write articles. Write as many articles as you want. They key here is to regularly update your blog withrelevant and captivating content. You get to decide how often you’d like to post something new onyour blog but the content is the hardest thing to maintain. Broaden your ideas on what is appropri-ate and what isn’t in terms of content that pushes boundaries and really gets people thinking.Write about the latest staff retreat. Let your clients know who makes up their favourite company. Turnyour company into real people – that way, your market will find it much harder to forget the humanaspect of your company, therefore making it harder for them to dismiss the personality of yourcompany. And that’s very important.Write about a conference the Vice President of the company recently attended and presented at.What did they talk about? Don’t provide a transcript of their speech; simply give a summary of theirmessage. Highlight the interesting points and enable readers to give their opinion. 2
  6. 6. Showcase your company’s view of the industry you’re involved with by using interesting articles thatchallenge commonplace ideas or take a new angle on an old topic. Don’t focus solely on whatyour company alone is doing. By no means promote your competition but allow your company tobe a channel through which people can learn more about the industry that you represent. That way,your market gets context, therefore enabling them to understand you better.You can use your blog as a multi-media platform but we recommend sticking to articles and writtencontent over visual and audio content. If you would create a podcast, your blog can be a goodplace to host it but don’t overwhelm the viewer. Blogs were originally created to host written content– though they have adapted to host many other forms of content, people still expect to predomi-nantly read blogs.FACEBOOK Maintain a professional yet relational toneThough you probably think of Facebook as a site for far more colloquial content, Facebook hasevolved to cater to companies and businesses around the world. And evolved quite well, we mightadd.It is possible to maintain a professional yet relational tone on your Facebook fan page and withoutcompromising the way in which you enjoy communicating your brand.E.g. 1: ~ We R *sUpEr* ExCiTeD about tha new products in our new RaNgE!!!~Status updates like this are inappropriate and will falsely represent your company online, somethingthat you should always avoid doing.E.g. 2: We’ve just brought out a brand new range of products that are getting everyone here at[company name] excited. Let us know what you think! Follow this link and comment: [link]This is a far more appropriate use of language and tone. It’s professional yet friendly and doesn’toverwhelm the user with information. It also provides them with a structured place to give theirfeedback, instead of leaving them to communicate solely via comments on Facebook. This canalso drive traffic to another online platform, therefore exposing your clients to more information andpossibly leading them to look at your products and services as well as reinforcing your online brand.Now, to talk about the vast range of mediums one can use on a Facebook page. Facebook isdefinitely the most diverse social media platform your company can use, structured to enable themaximum use of different means of communication and a great place to really showcase yourbrand’s personality.BASIC STATUS UPDATES Connect with fansThese should typically be updated a handful of times a day. Don’t spam your fans with the samemessages over and over again, every half an hour – it will most likely result in the loss of said fansand that is exactly the kind of situation you want to avoid.Instead, use your status updates to let your fans know what your company is doing at the moment.Tell them about a competition that you’re running and how to enter, advertise the winners of com-petitions that have just ended, promote a new product that’s just come out, write a brief phrase 3
  7. 7. about new company developments, showcase an award that your company has just won – thinkrelatively short and informative updates that keep your clients up to speed with company developments.Also, share information about initiatives or groups that your company supports, news about yourcompany’s brand ambassadors (if you have any), small developments in your industry – any relevantand interesting information that your Facebook fans will want to know.Connect with your fans through posing questions related to recent events or news (note: this differsfrom the Ask feature mentioned later). Enable them to interact with your company on your Facebookpage – reply to their comments, keep track of what they’re saying, enable them to post on your wallto give your company feedback or pose a specific question to you. Facebook is the perfect place toreally get to know your market.MULTIMEDIA STATUS UPDATES Keep yourupdates fresh and uniqueFacebook also supports picture, video and podcast status updates. Feel free to make use of thesefeatures but also ensure that this footage is available on another site of yours - after a while, theseupdates will be lost in the mass of your fans’ news feeds and the influx of information and feedbackon your profile. Perhaps keep a tab on your blog or website with all your videos and/or podcastsconveniently grouped together and saved.PICTURES Ensure ultimate browser experienceFacebook is the place to host your company’s photos. Recently have a team-building retreat?Create an album for it on your profile and post the pictures there. Have pictures of all your productsavailable for viewing. Did you host an event to promote eco-friendly ways of running a business? Postthose photos on Facebook, as well. People are generally visual so cater to that side of them with adiverse collection of pictures that showcase what your company is all about.Keep your photos and photo albums organised to ensure the ultimate browser ease. Continuity andflow are just as important in the success of your Facebook fan page as content – if people find itdifficult to look through your page, chances are they won’t fan it or visit it again.LINKS Be smart with your linksLinks are going to help generate a large portion of the content on your Facebook page. Facebook isnot the right platform for long, drawn-out comments on your latest development, product, companyevent or conference. Rather, Facebook is a great platform through which you can promote the sitesthat are hosting the full attraction. Has your company released a new line of products/a new servicepackage? Write a short line about it on your fan page and provide a link to the correct page on yourwebsite. Have you uploaded a video of your Vice President’s speech at a national conference?Advertise it on your fan page but keep the actual footage on another platform. Written a grippingarticle on your blog? Share the link with your Facebook fans and pair it with a catchy tag-line to grab attention. 4
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  9. 9. Always provide some amount of information with any link that you share; never just post a link andhope that the thumbnail will tell your fans all they need to know. This gives you yet another opportunityto write a catchy one-liner about your content and to attract an even wider range of attention.FACEBOOK ASK Get your fans to contribute their opinionsPresent your fans with polls that you can quickly create on your Facebook fan page. With this newapp readily available for you to use, it’s easiest now more than ever before to find out what yourmarket wants, what makes them tick and what kind of information, product or service they willrespond to most effectively. Generate interaction by asking your fans something that is relevant toboth your industry and their lives. This way, they will want to become involved in the poll and contrib-ute their opinion. It’s the ultimate form of market research, without the long, drawn-out surveys andhours of menial labour. What more could you want?TABS Be creative with your Facebook tabsThe default tabs host your page’s pictures, videos, notes and information. The information tab shouldnot be neglected! It can provide your fans with valuable insights into what your company does, giveyour page a better chance of SEO success and attract potential fans that are interested in your field.It’s also another opportunity to project a flattering image to the public.Your Facebook fan page is not limited to the few default options Facebook provides you with. It isnow possible to download various applications (through Facebook) that enable you to fully customisetabs on your page, therefore opening your Facebook fans up to that much more of your brand.Facebook tabs can be used for many different things. The more creative you become, the moreeffective your fan page will become. Below are a few examples of how the tabs are currently beingused but don’t let that dictate the beginning and end of your use of the new tabs feature.Tabs can host competition pages (seeing as it is against Facebook rules to host any sort of competi-tion directly through Facebook or that relies only on Facebook interaction) or a page that shows yourlatest products and/or service packages.Tabs can also link your Facebook page to your other social media accounts. This way, your fans areprovided with a look at the content you post on your other social media platforms without it cloggingup your main Facebook page or their news feeds.The latest and greatest use of the Facebook tab is a welcome page, complete with compellingdesigns and well-worded brand information. It acts almost like a technological, link-enabled flyer foryour company and its one of the simplest ways to attract traffic to your page – grab your potentialclients’ attention with the first look they get at your company’s online presence. Your welcome tabshould be short, to-the-point and visually enticing. It should communicate basically what your com-pany does and give clients and fans an idea of why they should be using your company aboveothers. Definitely invest in some good visual graphics and/or pictures to take your welcome page tothe next level. Once someone enjoys your welcome tab, they’ll want to look at the rest of your Face-book page and that is, ultimately, the aim.Many companies also create tabs exclusively for competitions they are hosting. This means theydesign a visual flyer that tells you what the competition is about, showcases attractive graphics orpictures that are in line with the theme of the competition and a means through which you can enterthe competition, be it a link, a convenient place for you to enter in your email address or an entireapplication hosted on the Facebook page.Facebook tabs are extremely useful if used correctly – be creative with your approach to them.Never treat them as a feature that is only suitable for one thing. Their versatility is their greatest quality– exploit it. Feel free to include various mediums on your tabs, including videos and podcasts. Didyour company recently create an advert that is now fighting on TV? Embed the video on yourwelcome tab so that fans and viewers can get an idea of what you’re company is all about in aneasy, visually-pleasing way that enables them to absorb information without having to read it. 6
  10. 10. TWITTER Go ahead and create a Twitter strategyNow there’s a site many people misunderstand. There’s a general misconception that Twitter is thereto host meaningless content that is constantly updated, regarding their minute-to-minute activitiesand thoughts.False.Twitter is the best site to stay in touch with your fans in real-time and constantly communicate withthem. It doesn’t mean compromising your company’s brand or having to completely throw awayany professionalism in order to maintain the right tone. There is a way to manage your Twitteraccount effectively without letting go of your brand principles.Twitter updates should be short, concise and informative. Let go of the flowery usage of many wordsin order to paint just the right picture – use vocabulary with punch, words that convey a lot withouthaving to spell it out. You have a 140-character limit so use it effectively. Yes, links do count ascharacters. This platform is a great place to start conversations and keep up-to-date with whatpeople are saying as they’re saying it, therefore giving you yet another place to interact with yourmarket and stay on top of what they want, where they want it and how you can cater to them moreeffectively. Keep your tone professional yet relational and try to avoid an over-usage of shorthand.Shorthand, acronyms and abbreviations that are widely understood and common in yourcompany’s field are perfectly acceptable as long as they don’t make up the majority of your tweetor your general content – they should not present a way to eliminate communicating in the usualmanner or excuse you from putting as much thought into what you’re tweeting compared to whatyou’re posting on your blog. Any and all social media interaction that your company performsshould be done so with a clear goal in mind, be in line with the digital content strategy that yourcompany has worked out and maintain your company’s brand personality and standards.Twitter is also a great place to share links to your articles, other people’s articles that present informa-tion relevant to your field and your followers, your videos, your podcasts and any and all informationthat you feel your online followers should be exposed to.TWEETThis is the term used for Twitter’s version of status updates. It’s the 140 characters or less that you oryour company post(s) on Twitter. The content of a Tweet can vary greatly, as discussed previously.RETWEETThis is when you see another person/company’s tweet and decide that you would like to share itwith your Twitter followers. It’s the same concept as sharing something on Facebook or rebloggingan article or post on a blog-hosting site.Before you retweet, make sure that the content of the tweet is in line with what your brand repre-sents, the field your company operates in/from and that the information within the tweet will bemeaningful to your clients and fans. Do not retweet something merely because it has something todo with your industry – Twitter followers are even more demanding than Facebook fans and are onlyinvested in information that will make a difference to them in some way or another or pique theirinterest. Think before you click. 1 7
  11. 11. HASHTAGSTo some people, this is an entirely foreign word. Well, here’s the moment when you learn what ahashtag is and how it can benefit your company’s Twitter presence.A hashtag is a word or series of words linked together with a hash at the beginning, e.g:#REthinkMkting. This hashtag translates as retweet think marketing.What hashtags do is provide a way of grouping together all discussions that are occurring on Twitterthrough the discussion topic. Once you include a hashtag in your tweet, you are acknowledgingthat your tweet has something to do with that topic and are making your tweet easier to discover bypeople who are also involved in that discussion. A hashtag acts as an embedded link – oncesomeone clicks on a hashtag, they are taken to a page (similar to a search results page) thatdisplays all the tweets that include that hashtag in order of time. The latest tweet will appear first. Thislist is constantly updated as new tweets are created and posted with this hashtag included. Thisway, people can see what anyone and everyone on Twitter is saying about a certain topic.If you use a hashtag, your tweet will also appear on the results page with all the other tweets con-cerning that topic. Anyone interested in that topic will be able to see your tweet. If they like yourtweet, they may look at your Twitter profile. And from there, it all depends on your content and yourrelevance to that person. It’s a great way to attract new fans and clients and expand your market,your following and your social media presence.To make this seem less like unintelligible jargon, here’s a screenshot of the results page afterclicking on a hashtag (the hashtag was randomly chosen and does not represent any particu-lar affiliation with that topic);This also gives you a visual platform through which you can better understand the other Twitter-related features we’ll discuss shortly.The green highlighted word saying #REthinkMkting is the hashtag. As you can see, this ispresent in all the tweets shown on the page. If your company had said something about thistopic and included the hashtag in your tweet, the tweet would also be included on this pageand visible to any and all who choose to view it. It’s the most innovative way of holding discus-sions online without having to create a forum or having to tweet differently in order to partici-pate.Twitter automatically shows you the latest ‘trending topics’ in your region on the left-hand sideof your home page. Trending topics is the name Twitter uses for the list of hashtags that arebeing used the most at that particular point in time. This means your company doesn’t have towork to find what the public at large is discussing in real-time – you merely have to look to theleft of your screen and there they all are, organised and ready for your convenience. Again,don’t merely become involved in a popular discussion in order to let people know that yourTwitter account exists. Only become involved in discussions that are relevant and in some waymeaningful to your company, your company’s brand and your company’s online audience. 81
  12. 12. The icon at the top of the page that says ‘#Discover’ is another way for your company to keepup-to-date with current topics and conversations that aren’t necessarily restricted to your company’sregion or area. Once you click on the #Discover icon, you are taken to another results page thatdisplays the most popular topics on Twitter at the moment across the globe. Use it to becomeinvolved in international discussion regarding a topic that’s appropriate.TAGGINGTagging on Twitter works much the same way as tagging on Facebook. It enables you to ‘tag’another Twitter account in your tweet. This means people who are following your Twitter account cansee that you are in some way involved with this Twitter account. The tag also acts as an embeddedlink, therefore enabling people to click on the account name tagged in your tweet and be takendirectly to that account’s Twitter profile. Your tweet will also automatically appear on the taggedaccount’s Twitter profile, therefore opening your Twitter account up to anyone that views said Twitterprofile. It’s a great way to spread yourself across the network that is Twitter and expose your companyto an even larger online audience.In order to tag an account in your tweet, you need to be following that account on Twitter. Then, yousimply type in an‘@’ symbol and a list of all the Twitter accounts you follow automatically pops up. Asyou type in more of the account name, the list of the profiles your company is following lessensbased on account names that contain the letters and characters you are typing. Click on theaccount you want to tag and you’re done. It works exactly the same way on Facebook, so use thisfeature when your company is in partnership with another person or company for a certain competi-tion, event or drive in order to let your online audience know who’s involved and to let the partneringcompanies’/person’s online audience be exposed to your company. 9
  13. 13. YOUTUBEYoutube is a site dedicated to host video content. It has millions of registered accounts and evenmore people that view videos without registering first. It’s the perfect platform through which yourcompany can host visual content.There are a number of types of visual content you can host on Youtube. TV ADVERTS that your com-pany has released and created can go on your Youtube account – this is useful because even oncethe advert is no longer flighting on TV, it is still available for viewing on your Twitter account with notime-limit. Youtube can easily act as an archive for all visual content your company produces.Also look into uploading the video of the Vice President’s speech we spoke about earlier for yourviewer’s convenience as well as webinars.WEBINARSWebinars are the latest way to host seminars for people interested in your company without having toorganise a venue, pay for travel expenses and take time out of your daily life to attend. They can beorganised in a variety of different ways but they encourage user interaction, something your com-pany should be looking for in order to stay in touch with their market. You could host live webinars,where your market, clients and fans send in questions through various social media platforms inreal-time and a company representative answers them. Alternatively, you could plan a webinar andadvertise it extensively, asking people to send questions and queries in that are then addressed in therecorded webinar that is later posted. Webinars are a new way to keep your market informed and tolet them know exactly what your company’s views on certain topics are and where the company isgoing.MochumentariesAnother new content-creating technique that is starting to hit companies’ online presences world-wide is the ‘mocumentary’; a mock-documentary. Companies are pushing the content boundarieswith hilarious and engaging videos that make constructive fun of their industry. Humour is somethingpeople have responded to for centuries and has always proven effective (as long as it’s tasteful).Mocumentaries show people that your company acknowledges the humorous aspect of the field itis involved in, embraces it and in doing so, distances itself from that stereotype. Don’t shy away fromsomething daring if it will attract an audience. 1 10
  14. 14. Visual content is very rich content in terms of information so be careful not to upload and create toomuch and risk overwhelming the viewer. Don’t be a video shrew, though – visual content is some-thing that everyone loves to be a part of and watch so definitely consider it for your company andyour company’s online presence.VimeoYoutube is not the only video-hosting platform on the Internet – Vimeo is also quite a large name inthe video community and boasts an impressive following. Research the various video-hosting sites inorder to make an informed decision on which site you would like to represent the visual aspect ofyour company’s brand.CONCLUSIONSocial media is no longer a novelty in the professional world, yet many companies aren’t involved.It’s an ingenious and invaluable tool through which your company can easily CONNECT, SHARE andEXPAND its clients, market and online audience while gaining valuable insight into what makes thesepeople tick.If you want to give your company an edge, invest in an online presence that handles itself profes-sionally and intelligently while growing in leaps and bounds through interactive and engaging socialmedia usage.Contact UsWebsite: @DigitalbyDesigneBooks: 087 809 3221 11
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