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By Joel Goldstein.

In today’s competitive landscape, companies need to use every available method to increase their earnings. However, many neglect to maximize the value of their social media accounts. In my experience, platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn offer massive upsides to businesses across all sectors. When leveraged properly, they can be an almost limitless source of lead generation. Here’s how to maximize social media’s income-generating potential.

Building a social media following.

The first step toward turning your social media into a revenue stream is building a social media presence and follower base. There are certainly plenty of users to attract on the most active social media websites. Twitter reportedly has approximately 330 million users, while Facebook has an astonishing 2.7 billion users. Even if only a tiny fraction of these users are interested in your industry, that’s still a massive audience for your business.

Companies who implement a comprehensive social media strategy typically do better than ones that approach their social media activity without foresight. If you’d like to develop a better strategy for building your social media following, you should start with an understanding of your desired audience. Who are they? What do they like? What platforms are they on? Answering these questions will give you the information you need to get started.

Once you understand your target audience, you can begin reaching out to them in an attempt to win their attention. The best way to do this is by regularly posting content they find relevant. This may include interesting statistics, contests and giveaways, engaging videos, and company news. Provide your audience with high-quality content consistently to start growing your social media following.

Use social media to increase web traffic.

As you build your social media following, you’ll want to start implementing strategies that allow you to profit on the increased attention. The first step in this process is getting users to move from the social media platform you found them on to your website. They aren’t going to do this on their own, so your company needs to come up with ways to incentivize their click.

One of the most proven ways to achieve this is with blog content. Posts with snappy titles and the promise of engaging content give social media users a real reason to visit your website. You may even want to consider promoting your blog posts via social media ads to get more eyes on them. Not sure how often you should be blogging? It depends on your goals, and experts suggest experimenting with your publishing frequency to find your “sweet spot.”

Optimize your landing pages.

Once a user has reached your company’s website, it should be extremely easy for them to take the next step in the conversion process. Marketers refer to this as a sales funnel. Essentially, you want to move the users who visit your company’s website toward your ultimate sales goal, which could be signing up for your service or purchasing one of your products. To accomplish this, you’ll need to optimize your website’s landing pages.

Landing page optimization means enhancing each element on your landing page in order to increase conversions. There are a few different ways you can accomplish this. For example, you may want to use a heat map to show you where users are clicking on your website. Or, maybe you want to track each visitor’s behaviour to see why conversions either succeed or fail.

Additionally, you can optimize your landing pages by completing the following steps:

• Make your offer clear.

• Simplify your page.

• Introduce clear call-to-action buttons.

• Add contact information.

• Add testimonials from satisfied customers.

• Utilize search engine optimization tools.

Utilize social media as a public relations tool. 

According to the industry report from RepResearch, sales reps value a brand’s reputation above all when deciding whether to take on a new line. Your company should also explore how social media can be used as a tool for public relations.

PR is something that every company does in one way or another. It involves deliberately managing the release and spread of information between a business and the public. Put another way, it is a strategic communications process that should allow for a mutually beneficial relationship between a company and its clients.

Social media has made PR more accessible. This presents its own benefits and challenges. When done well, PR on social media can be used to get more people interested in your business, define your brand’s image and drive more traffic to your website. These are all outcomes that have the potential to increase your company’s revenue.

One of the most effective methods of PR on social media is collaborations with other brands. This may involve curating content for other companies in your industry, or even guest posting on their blogs. Another opportunity you may want to consider here is asking C-level executives and social media influencers to publish posts that serve as PR for your company.

Remember that a new revenue stream is the end goal. 

Social media presents companies with exciting ways to generate new leads and increase revenue. The most effective way to accomplish this is by using your social media posts to attract users to your website. Your business can achieve this by regularly posting engaging and industry-specific content to its feeds, as well as by engaging in PR efforts on its social media accounts.

Once a user has reached your website, continue the conversion process by optimizing your landing pages and making it obvious what you want the visitor to do. Following these steps could be just what your company needs to turn its social media into a new stream of revenue.

Feature Image Credit: GETTY

By Joel Goldstein.

Joel Goldstein is the President of Mr. Checkout Distributors. Read Joel Goldstein’s full executive profile here.

Sourced from Forbes

By Thomas Glare.

Description: Despite the constant traffic in social media, some businesses still think they are better off not using this amazing and largely low-cost resource for advertisement. We have a few reasons why they might want to reconsider that opinion.

Introduction: Social media platforms are everywhere. If you have a smartphone and Wi-Fi, you have access to everyone you know and everyone they know every second of the day. And, while using it to reconnect with old friends is a pretty solid way to utilize such a versatile medium, it can also be a great resource for marketing.

These days, it seems like everyone has social media accounts. From toddlers to grandparents, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have kept us connected, for better or worse, and allowed us to know everything about everyone. It is even possible to win real money by clicking on an ad or doing a social media quiz.

Marketing in the Age of Social Media

In the past, ad traffic was expensive and could only come from television, radio, and newspapers. Promos run maybe once an hour to as little as once a week, and the target audience was only listeners, watchers, or subscribers. And advertisers hoped their target market was tuned at just the right time, but it was essentially a gamble.

These days, social media advertising has almost overtaken all other forms of marketing. As a matter of fact, when a marketing firm lists their services, if the phrase “social media campaign” isn’t mentioned, a lot of businesses will move on. It isn’t the niche market of ten years ago, but a living, breathing animal of its own.

Your Next Marketing Strategy

White pages do work, and emails are still a heavy hitter in the marketing game. But if you want to get the most eyes on your product or service, you can’t beat the endless traffic of the big three. These social media networks have made a killing based on this knowledge. So, why shouldn’t you?

Here’s how:

1.    Ready and Waiting

Your customers are on social media. You want to connect with them. So, like AT&T used to say, “Reach out and touch someone.” They are waiting for you to tell them what you have to offer. Don’t leave them in suspense.

2.    Branding

You aren’t just a business but a brand. And your brand is the face of your company. People recognize big brands because they stand out, and there is something special about them. Get your brand out there and introduce yourself!

3.    Improving Relationships

Online reviews have replaced comment cards, and access to business owners has become commonplace. Using social media to stay connected with your customers is the best way to know whether your business is doing well, and what to do to fix it if something is wrong. Instantly.

4.    A Wider Net

Any social media manager will tell you not to aim at small but launch a large campaign to draw big attention. As far as social media plans go, this is a valid idea. You may inspire new business just because you took a chance on an untapped market for your niche.

5.    Low Money Down

Let’s say you are a casino. Your business is to bring in people with money to spend. But how? Free coupons! You put a free coupon for slots free spins on Twitter, and the traffic flows into your site. And you paid next to nothing for it. Social media marketing is the most cost-effective medium for product promotion.

img alt: social media marketing

6.    Competition

Everyone has a business out in the world that is trying to take your customers and your dollars. And guess what? They already have a website and tons of followers, subscribers, and valued customers. They aren’t taking your business; you are giving it to them by not having a social media strategy.

7.    Loyalty

People like to know who they are buying from. A bad social media brand can kill a business, just because of the owner’s improprieties. But if your customers are aware of your story, and it garners trust and makes you seem like a quality human-being, they instinctively want to support you.

8.    Drawing a Bullseye

While you can throw out a huge campaign that blankets the entirety of social media, you can also target specific people, catering to your most fervent customer base only. It is similar to fishing with a bait that only certain fish like. Sure, you will get some outsider nibbles, but you will hook what you came for.

9.    Up the Ladder

Along with knowledge of SEO, traffic algorithms have a hand in search engine rankings. The more people visit you, the higher you are on the list when customers search for your business. Typically, the average web surfer will pick one of the top five links when looking for just about anything.

10.Reaching and Grasping

Just like the Internet is global, so is social media. And that means you can now advertise all over the world from one or more platforms with ease and speed. Customers in Estonia can buy your product, receive it, and give you feedback in a matter of days, not months like in the past. It has connected the commerce of the world.

Conclusion

Social media management may seem a little odd to those with old school marketing ideas, and that makes sense. So many advertising fads have come and gone, it can be puzzling if getting an account for your business might just end up as a waste of time. But the upshot is that advertising on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are so quick and easy that you’re actually wasting more time trying to come up with reasons not to.  Do you advertise your business on social media? Has it helped your bottom line and customer traffic?

By Thomas Glare

Thomas Glare runs a marketing firm and believes in the power of advertising through social media platforms. He recognizes it as a vital tool in promotional mediums and uses it on a regular basis for his clients to promote his own business interests.

By Trevor Clawson

Suddenly, we’re all stars of the small screen.

OK, perhaps that’s over-egging the pudding but it’s certainly true that increasing numbers of us are having to get used to the sight of our pixelated faces staring back at us from laptop and tablet screens as we communicate with peers, talk to our bosses and pitch to clients via video conferencing tools.

And the rise of the Zoom/Teams/Skype meeting has come as something of a culture shock. Once upon a time, you either connected face-to-face or on the phone. Ahead of face-to-face situations you probably took time to prepare, if only by dressing for the occasion. On the phone, dress didn’t matter so much, if at all. You could talk to the CEO of a multinational corporation and potential customer while dressed only in jeans, t-shirt, and your favourite baseball cap. Only you would know. This is why, of course, employees in call-centres aren’t always noted for their sartorial elegance.

And here’s the thing. When video conferencing began to pick up traction at the beginning of the pandemic, it was essentially replacing meetings that would otherwise have taken place in person. Now – in some cases at least – it’s becoming a default. For instance, until fairly recently when I arranged to interview an entrepreneur, it was usually done on the phone. Today, more than 50 percent of my interviews are done via Zoom or Teams. Consequently, I get to see my interlocutors. I see how they are dressed, what their offices look like, and whether they look relaxed and confident when answering questions. As such, maybe I’m getting a better sense of their personal brand – and, worryingly, they of mine.

Upsides and Downsides

If you happen to run an entrepreneurial business, there are upsides and downsides to this new visibility. If your staff come across well, a video conference – say, with a customer –  can enhance the brand of the business. If on the other hand, members of your team look uncomfortable, haven’t dressed for the meeting and are shrouded in shadow due to poor lighting, an audio/visual encounter can have a negative impact.

The same is true on social media. If you use Facebook, Linkedin or Instagram to interact with stakeholders, then a lot depends on the perception that you and your team create. Get it right and social media pays dividends. Get it wrong and you, potentially at least,  have problems.

So maybe it’s time for relatively small businesses to pay attention to personal brands. Certainly, that’s the view of  Carlene Jackson, founder of Cloud9 Insight, a cloud CRM provider based in Brighton, England. Although the company is relatively small – around 35 staff – Jackson is encouraging everyone, regardless of role, to develop their own, visible, personal brands.

As Jackson explains it all started with an assessment of her own role as company CEO.  “A lot of organizations are headed by guru brands – people like Richard Branson and Elon Musk. I realized that as a business owner, I needed a personal brand.”

Everyone Has a Brand

A lot of company owners probably feel the same way. As leaders, they are the faces of their businesses, attending networking events, talking to major customers, and perhaps also doing some public speaking.

But owners and founders are by no means the only people who represent their companies. Sales staff certainly interact with customers on a daily basis, but even in the so-called back-office departments, individuals have a profile. “My lightbulb moment was that everyone has their own personal brand,” says  Jackson.

What does that mean in practice? As Jackson sees it, the brand of employees is manifest in their networks,  their presentation and how well (or badly) they are thought of by those who interact with them. Often, however, an individual’s brand has quite a limited reach – maybe only colleagues are aware of it and, to be honest, they probably don’t think of it as a brand.

But this is the age of social media. There is scope to build the brand of the company by leveraging the personal profiles of employees. “I thought it would be amazing if everyone had a voice. If they could tell stories,” says Jackson.

So Cloud9 Insight brought in consultants to teach staff how to develop their personal brands. Teams have been coached in using social media, how to present themselves on video, and how to dress. Equally important, they are encouraged to share stories. For instance, employees make videos. These are passed onto the marketing team, who in turn create blogs around them.

Social media is an important element – not just the usual suspects of Twitter and LinkedIn but also Instagram and personal Facebook accounts.

The latter is potentially tricky. We all have work and play personas. How we present ourselves to colleagues and stakeholders in a work situation is often fundamentally different from how we talk to friends about hobbies and(ahem) wild nights out. So isn’t there a risk that that work version of a personal brand will be at odds with the image an individual presents in a non-professional situation?

Jackson says some staff members could create separate Facebook accounts for work and play – but more generally she argues that anything posted on social media should be informed by the knowledge that future employers may well look at it and make hiring decisions accordingly. Thus, she says, there should be no inconsistency between the work and play brands. That’s possibly true but it has to be said that it could make Facebook a very dull place.

Why Invest? 

Personal branding coaches are familiar figures in big companies, but perhaps not so much in small organizations. Jackson says, there are good commercial reasons for investing in training.

“People buy from people,” she says. “On the delivery side of the business, people will always look up your employees, so it’s important that they have accurate profiles on LinkedIn. At the same time, there are opportunities to share thought leadership.” This creates opportunities to boost sales. Since June, the business – which serves more than 600 customers – has grown 70 percent, with referrals playing a major role in driving new business.

“It has also been fantastic in HR,” Jackson adds. “On the recruitment side of things, candidates are coming directly to HR.”

All of this begs a question. What is a good personal brand?. “It should be authentic and shouldn’t come across as too scripted. And the brand should be relatable” says Jackson. On the technical side photography (on social media) should be high quality as should the cameras and lighting used for video conferencing.

Jackson acknowledges that some employees were nervous at first and the training sessions (which have included a private Facebook group) have involved out of hours “homework.” With coaching, however, confidence has grown. And as Jackson sees it, marketing has become more crucial than ever during the lockdown. personal branding plays an important role.

Feature Image Credit: Carlene Jackson, 2019 ANDREW HASSON

By Trevor Clawson

Sourced from Forbes

By Eric J. Savitz

Social-media stocks are getting a boost from Deutsche Bank analyst Lloyd Walmsley, who raised his rating on Twitter and lifted his price targets on Facebook, Alphabet, Snap, and Pinterest.

For Twitter (ticker: TWTR), he went to Buy from Hold, with a price target of $56, up from $36. The call is part of a broader bullish report on the social-media stocks, which he thinks are positioned to benefit from a coming rebound in online advertising demand.

The analyst lifted his price targets on Facebook (FB), to $325 from $305; Alphabet, Google’s parent (GOOGL), to $2,020 from $1,975; Pinterest (PINS), to $55 from $43; and Snap (SNAP), to $32 from $28. He repeated Buy ratings on all of them.

“We are bullish on the ad names into Q3 results given a continued ad recovery through Q3 and a strong outlook for Q4 based on our industry conversations,” he said. “We are bullish on the space into 2021, where a continued cyclical recovery and easy comps will drive accelerating growth and margin recovery, with potential for more share gains across online advertising.”

He cited the large-cap companies in the group—Google and Facebook—as having a better balance of risks and potential rewards, given that investors are less enthusiastic about their prospects than they are for the midcap firms in the group: Snap and Pinterest. Walmsley said he is positive about Snap and Pinterest’s fundamentals, but noted “positive sentiment” about those stocks.

Twitter, he said, can continue to rally, driven by improving growth in the second half. and “a compelling bull case for 2021.”

“In our view, Twitter is well positioned to benefit from a big event landscape in 2021, expansion into more performance advertising on the back of its ad server rebuild and new MAP [mobile app promotion] product, and an eventual high-margin subscription product,” he wrote.

“We have been excited about the medium-term prospects for Twitter but unable to get more bullish given weak advertising channel feedback. We are now starting to hear more positive feedback in the ad channel and would take advantage of the opportunity to build a position now before a stronger ad recovery takes hold and we get into the period of 2021 excitement.”

Monday morning, Twitter was up 4.5% to $47.99, Facebook rose 3.1% to $272.67, and Alphabet gained 2.7%, to $1,550.94. Snap rose 0.7% to $27.18, while Pinterest rallied 2.9% to $44.65.

By Eric J. Savitz

Write to Eric J. Savitz at eric.savitz@barrons.com

Sourced from BARRON’S

By Ralf Llanasas.

Given the growth of social media and content marketing, there has been a visible growth in online writing businesses. The demand for writers in today’s information age will keep on rising. The success that awaits is exciting, but admittedly, it can be challenging to deal with the day-to-day pressures of managing tasks and the business-side itself.

So here’s a good question to ask: What can you do to maximize your writing opportunities? How do you improve your writing business management? Here are five tools that you should incorporate into your activities to streamline your workflow.

  1. Simul

In a writing business, you don’t handle things on your own. Your success is dependent on other writers and editors. Having different people checking out write-ups would also entail having revisions and a little back-and-forth until the client is satisfied with your output

This is where Simul comes in. This software will allow you to compare Word documents and track the changes in the document. It also allows multiple people to collaborate in real-time, showing the changes made by each party, and allowing you to choose which one was better. With Simul, preparing documents and writing articles will be so much easier.

  1. Whitesmoke

No human writer is ever error-proof. Whether you are a native speaker or well-studied in the English language, you are bound to make mistakes, so you need software to do some checking for you. Whitesmoke provides these solutions, with features like spelling, grammar, punctuation, and style checks to help you correct and enhance all your written works.

  1. BPlans 

In building a business, advice from experts can help you achieve the goals yourself and boost the growth of your brand. Bplans is a resource filled with various business know-how that can help you set up and get ahead. They offer business plan templates, guides, marketing reports, pitch templates, and other tools you never knew you needed. From coming up with a business idea to learning how to be a business manager, Bplans has a wide selection of videos, blogs, and other pieces that will serve as your digital mentor and guide.

  1. Xmind 

Developing ideas is essential in gaining a competitive edge in your business.  More than that, your creativity must be at its best for you to be able to write better and offer something new to your clients. Xmind is an amazing software that will help you keep track of your ideas and opening you to the possibilities that can grow from them.

Xmind offers mind mapping features, with a version that offers a more modern design and another going with the traditional route. This is perfect for people who require more organization in their projects and for those who want to retain more information in the things they are trying to learn. You can create non-linear documents, organization charts, matrix, timelines, and other

  1. Daily Grammar

As a writer, improving your grammar skills is a vital part of the job. Expanding your vocabulary and learning about the different rules can help you produce topnotch work and set you apart from your competitors. Aside from reading books and watching video lessons, you can also explore the available resources from Daily Grammar.

Daily Grammar is a teaching tool for people of all ages and English proficiency levels. You can explore 440 grammar lessons and 88 quizzes to test your knowledge. They also have a daily newsletter that will give you tips and lesson reminders to keep you on the road towards the best writer you can be.

These five tools are just a few among the thousands of apps and programs out there, but they can be a good way to start. The key to succeeding in your writing business is to do this important thing: write. By continuously practicing this skill, you’ll learn more and you will be amazed at how far you can go!

By Ralf Llanasas

Ralf Llanasas is a content marketer at Simul docs specializing topics in business technology, SaaS, and automation. His writings can be read across different online publications.  He love’s taking photographs when free. Follow him on Twitter at @IamRalf12.

By John Turner.

You can grow your business in countless ways using social media. Influencers are one of the most common yet underutilized social media marketing tools at your disposal.

Influencers are internet personalities who promote your content to their audiences in exchange for cross-promotion, cash payment or a free sample of the product you want them to show. This strategy can help you generate more leads and sales. People who follow influencers trust them, so their recommendations are like getting a suggestion from a friend.

You may be thinking about reaching out to influencers to promote your business, or maybe you’ve been contacted by an influencer and want to know what you need to consider. Either way, we are going to take a look at several things you should think about before you sign a contract with an influencer.

Let’s get started!

Content Niche And Format

First, think about the niche and format of the influencer you want to hire. Both of these elements will play a role in deciding whether this person will be a good fit for your brand.

Always work with people who have a similar target audience to your own. It wouldn’t make sense to promote your email marketing firm with an influencer who plays video games. You would want to find someone who talks about finance or teaches subscribers about marketing.

If your product doesn’t resonate with the audience, there’s no chance that they will click your link in the description and buy your product. Your main goal should be to find influencers who work in a space where your target audience is likely to spend their time.

Format plays an essential part in the equation, too. You likely wouldn’t spend too much time promoting your email marketing business with Instagram because there are limitations due to not having a physical product to show off. But if your company sells items like clothing or pet supplies, there are countless Instagram influencers you can contact.

Audience Size

Social media influencers can be classified by their audience sizes. There are four types you should know:

• Nano: < 1,000 followers

• Micro: 1,000 to 100,000 followers

• Macro: 100,000 to 1 million followers

• Mega: > 1 million followers

Each size segment has a unique benefit that you can use to your advantage. For instance, macro-influencers don’t have the reach of a mega-influencer, but they tend to have more rapport with their audiences.

Normally, you want to work with a mega-influencer because your goal is to spread brand awareness, which can help budding businesses. Macro-influencers can help you get more eyes on your website and improve your conversions. The slightly smaller audience means you have a better chance of reaching people interested in your product.

Micro- and nano-influencers are excellent for small-scale, targeted campaigns. If you want to promote a beta test of your software, put codes out to someone with less than 1,000 followers. Sending out the code to more people than that could cause the beta to break, which isn’t helpful for consumers or developer teams.

Tracking Progress

Progress drives every business. Successes and failures are often determined by how much we can accomplish over a specific period of time. Metrics across your website, email and social media all point to the progress you’re making as a company.

Social media influencers have their own metrics that you should track consistently. You need to know how many people are landing on your website from the influencer’s content. Create special short links that are connected to each influencer so you can track their progress over time.

Seeing their performance as it relates to your site is vital to fine-tune your campaign in the future. For example, you should know if an influencer posted sponsored content for your brand for three months, but still never managed to get a click-through. Knowing this information means you’ll have the option to swap out influencers, look for new opportunities and steadily grow your brand.

Your decisions should ultimately boil down to your goals. Think carefully about your goals and expectations. What do you hope to accomplish by hiring a social media influencer? Do you want to spread brand awareness, or is your goal more about securing sales? Maybe it’s a mixture of both. Once you determine your goals, you can start considering the points mentioned above.

Feature Image Credit: GETTY

By John Turner,

The founder of SeedProd, the most popular coming-soon page solution for WordPress used by over 800,000 websites

By Tim Hughes.

Another day, and another part of the old analogue world dies.  Digital transformation accelerated by Covid19.

Coupon clipping is on the way out according to this article and Argos, the stalwart of the catalogue world, has just killed it’s catalogue.

It looks like iOS14 will hammer another nail in the coffin of advertising.

We’ve already seen the demise of cold calling through the introduction of GDPR and iOS13.  GDPR also having an impact on email marketing.

So while it is a long time before “advertising”, “cold calling” and “email marketing” can be called dead.  We know that the results we get deminise each year.  The only way you can keep up the results is to spend more money on ads, send more emails and make more calls.

Which we know, adds (no pun intended) to the noise.  If every company makes the same increase, the cross industry noise just increases, which means more people will turn to ad-blockers, unsubscribe and turn on the cold calling blockers on their iPhone.

As advertising, email and cold calling go the same way as coupons and catalogues, is there an alternative?

We can present to your management team an alternative that world beating companies are turning to.

What would that look like?

Social Media Has Changed How We Live and Work

At DLA Ignite a presentation will consist of some context, so research that shows the way that social media has changed the way we live and the way we work.

We are not saying things have changed, the figures from the research show how the world has changed.  For example …

We Have Transformed In Work and Play on Social

In this report by Simon Kemp he outlines the extent that social media has become part of our lives.

Linkedin have just announced there are now 706 million people on Linkedin.

How You Can Make a Difference?

We then talk about how you can make a difference.

Using ourselves as a case study, we show you what we do to “social sell”.  We don’t advertise, we don’t cold call and we don’t send spam emails.  We social sell.

We always point out that we are presenting to the Board of the business, through our own use of social.

Explaining with examples, of how we use social, is a great case study.  Everybody who works for DLA Ignite has to be a “high water mark” of social. Why? Because if we are to stand up in front of your sales team and say “do this”, it will be a short conversation if we are not exhibiting those behaviours.

(Somebody just launched a social selling business this week by sending an email.  Would you really buy from a company that sold social selling, that didn’t use social selling?)

What are Your Competitors Doing on Social?

Next we show how your competitors are using social.  Everybody is interested in what their competitors are doing and we can show you an analysis of what your competitors are doing.  Most of them are invisible to the digital customer, so this allows you to see the competitive advantage and revenue potential.  If you move into the digital space, you are out manoeuvring and out selling the competition, which is a good thing, right?

Who’s Doing This? – Case Studies

We then walk you through the companies and the people that are doing this already.  The actual $ the people have achieved.

I often write about BMW, while this is B2C it is a considered purchase and they use LinkedIn to generate leads.  In November 2019, they got 28 pieces of inbound from Linkedin and converted 14 of them. Let’s assume a BMW is $50,000, then that’s an additional $700,000 of revenue for zero marketing spend.

This is in the same month that Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) complained they couldn’t make any sales and were closing down production.

My point being that even before Covid19 there was clear winners and losers.

We do have NDAs in place with all of our clients, as you can imagine this is a massive competitive advantage, but there are details, like the one above, we can share.

If anybody tells you there is no Return on Investment (ROI) from social selling, they don’t know what they are talking about.

Next we talk about the opportunity and show a list of target accounts … companies that you currently don’t have relationships with, you could sell to with social and digital.

Target List and Accounts and People

In this meeting it ended up with us giving a presentation on Sales Navigator.  Not a technical presentation, but focused on your business.  Using certain search criteria, we pulled up a list of 800 people all of whom are possible target people / companies.  They are all are people that could buy from you.  It surprised this business, that they were not connected to any of the people.  Again, this gives you some idea of the potential you have.

Where Do We Go From Here?

At the end of the meeting the MD stood up and thanked our person and said “We went into lockdown analogue, but we will come out of it digital”.

Obviously at this point a company needs to decide how they implement this.

We think that having being do this for 4 years, we are no fly by night company, it gives us a great track record.  We have a proven methodology and all our customers get results.  The methodology is repeatable and predictable as to the results.  We are giving people a life skill, so they and you get these results, forever.

And finally, it’s all we do.

If you went for knee surgery and found the best knee surgeon in the world, then that would be perfect.  If the knee surgeon said they were also a ini cab driver and a gardener.  In fact, the longer the list of “services” he provides the more likely you won’t use him.  The same goes for your “full service marketing agency”.  I’m sorry, but they are not experts on social.  But all you have to do is look at their social profiles and compare them with ours.

How We Experienced 10 years’ Worth of Digital Growth in Just Three Months

We all know the world has changed and the fact we have “experienced 10 years’ worth of digital growth in just three months” just proves you cannot be doing the same as you were, pre-covid.

You have to stand up in your organisation and tell people that things have to change.  You need to raise as sales meetings, management meetings, leadership meetings and board meetings that you need to be social selling.

And you need help from a reputable company that understands change and is totally focused on getting results, though social, for it’s clients.

By Tim Hughes.

I’m contactable here

https://www.linkedin.com/in/timothyhughessocialselling/

Sourced from dla

By Tony Pec.

Many people become known within their own communities. They establish a name for themselves and build an “offline brand,” something that benefits them and helps create local opportunity, influence, leverage and longevity. They may have built a successful and well-known brand offline, but times are changing, and it is important for every business and entrepreneur to build their brand online.

In today’s world, social media has become a platform for individuals and businesses to build a national or even international brand. There are no limitations to what you are able to build because of social media’s power and scope. You can connect with individuals all around the world with the click of a button and generate more leads and sales than ever before.

Although it sounds amazing and simple at first, it is not. Taking your offline brand online is one of the most difficult things you can do because it requires true authenticity, vulnerability and consistency. Many, if not all, are very comfortable with their offline brand because those around them know who they are and their story. When bringing it online, you are starting from the beginning because you are putting yourself out there to people who may not know anything about you at all. Therefore, you are completely leaving your comfort zone and putting yourself in an uncomfortable situation.

You must present your accolades you’ve achieved offline in your online presence. You should aim to showcase all of your reviews and testimonials to present your proven track record. Building an online brand requires you to be who you are offline. There is no changing your persona for the online public because if those who follow you meet you, they will be able to tell if you are the same person or not.

Trying to change who you are is one of the biggest things that can negatively impact your brand when taking it online — so much so that it could be a death sentence for your brand. You must be you always. Your audience is going to correlate who you are to your business, and authenticity is pivotal to the success of your online brand. Your goal should be that when people from online you meet you for the first time in person, they say, “You are exactly who you are online!” This confirms you are building a strong online brand that properly depicts your offline brand.

One major component to building that successful online brand is true vulnerability. This is something that most people and businesses struggle with. They are under the impression that they need to be closed off and keep it “strictly” business. Don’t be misinformed. The way you act with those around you, the things you like, your personality and the way you dress should all be portrayed on your online social media platforms. Talk about why you’re in business. Show why your company makes a difference. Detail what makes you different.

Think deeper, not wider. When you are your true self, you will build the audience you want and connect with those individuals deeper than if you put on a fake persona just to attract who you think you want to attract. Do not try to build an online brand by putting out content and information you think others will like. Put out content and information that is authentically you and your brand.

The best way a business can build their brand online is through consistency. Just as consistency in working out and eating healthy will get you the results you want on your fitness journey, the same applies when building a brand online: Businesses that stay consistent will win. In my experience, the Instagram algorithm also favors consistency on the platform and will reward you with more reach.

When building an online brand, it is paramount to consistently show up day in and day out. Business leaders need to show as much of their day-to-day as possible so consumers can feel part of the journey and process behind the brand’s products or services. Business leaders need to consistently put out content that is educational, shows the behind the scenes, tells a story, highlights the team, recognizes the customer and engages with their audience. You can create unique content, engage, grow your reach and audience, and have a strategy, but if you’re not consistent, you won’t build a brand.

Your offline brand must be the same as your online brand. No changes — strictly you.

Feature Image Credit: GETTY

By Tony Pec

Co-Founder of Y Not You Media, helping businesses and brands grow with content, strategy and attention. Read Tony Pec’s full executive profile here.

Sourced from Forbes

By Amanda Robinson.

The more people engage with your ad and post, the more likely it is to be seen by people outside your target audience.

The following excerpt is from Ultimate Guide to Social Media Marketing by Eric Butow, Jenn Herman, Stephanie Liu, Amanda Robinson and Mike Allton, available now via Entrepreneur Press. Order from Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books.

Boosting your  Advertising efforts is an investment you might want to consider if social media marketing is a big part of your overall marketing strategy.

When you decide to advertise with Facebook, you can either create a new ad or use a status update you’ve already shared.

The ad fee structure is similar to  in that you can set a daily budget, but you don’t set a bid per click. Instead, Facebook will begin showing your ads; the more interest people show, the less per click you’ll be charged. So it’s in everyone’s best interests to create Facebook ad posts that are interesting and compelling.

In addition to driving traffic, you can use Facebook ads for  and simply pay for engagement — in other words, likes, comments and shares. The more people engage with your ad and post, the more likely it is to be seen by people outside your target audience.

Unlike  ads, which are 100 percent text, Facebook ads can be links, images or even video. You can use a single image or a carousel of images. You can even upload multiple images and let Facebook test which one resonates best with your audience.

You can also set up a remarketing pixel (a snippet of code installed on your website) so that Facebook can track users who have been to your site and allow you to “remarket” to them with an ad specifically targeting them.

Here’s how remarketing works. Once you have a Facebook pixel installed on your site and are driving targeted traffic using Google Ads (and, of course, other means), you are equipped to amplify the illusion of frequency.

With a pixel in place, you can now create Facebook ads targeting people who have visited your site, or even specific pages or posts within your site. This is referred to as retargeting or remarketing.

You’ve doubtless experienced this yourself. Spend a couple of minutes looking at cars on an automotive site, and suddenly every site you go to is displaying ads for that brand of car. Because you showed interest in a brand or product by visiting their site, advertisers smartly wish to capitalize on that interest and keep themselves top of mind.

You can now do exactly the same thing!

When your Google ads effectively capture someone as they’re searching for you or information you have published, they register as a visitor with the Facebook pixel. If Facebook recognizes them as a user and you are running a remarketing campaign that includes someone like them, you can layer brand-awareness or added-benefit advertising on Facebook or , which will potentially be seen by someone who was already demonstrating search intent and is familiar with your brand. This is extraordinarily powerful and effective.

Couple this technique with problem-solving content, and you now have a means to reach people who you know have an issue and may need help to solve it. That help might include:

  • How-to guides.
  • Answers to frequently asked questions.
  • Case studies.

Let’s say you’re a local attorney specializing in family law. You can write a series of blog posts that answer common questions about divorce, child custody, estate planning and so on, and then use Google Ads to help people who are searching for those answers find your content. You can then place Facebook ads that encourage those people to call you for more information and assistance.

Or let’s imagine you own a wedding dress shop. Same scenario: Create content that answers common questions brides have about their special day, use Google Ads to drive intentional traffic, and then leverage Facebook to make sure those brides know about your gorgeous dresses by placing ads showcasing your latest offerings and retargeting your website traffic.

Whatever products or services you have to offer, this technique can be implemented, tested, refined and then scaled up.

Feature Image Credit: Image credit: Kornburut Woradee | EyeEm | Getty Images

By Amanda Robinson.

Sourced from Entrepreneur Europe

By 

Does marketing have the power to change the world? The year 2020 has forced us all to redress the net result of the industrial revolution, which spurred mass consumption and throw-away consumerism. So, can our industry – with the abundance of talent, skill and creativity- champion for a better future for all?

The Drum and Facebook have partnered to bring together teams from brands and agencies across the globe to provide some answers to this very challenging question. The idea is to get together experts from the industry to find solutions to business and societal challenges to help create value for the people and the communities it impacts.

The creative brief

Uniting three markets under the theme of ‘stakeholder capitalism’ – with attention to inclusion and diversity – three separate teams in North America, EMEA and APAC were put together to answer the brief that involves a rethink of how small-to-medium size enterprises (SMEs) that are run by minorities operate, and how as an industry we can help create more resilient businesses especially in these unprecedented times.

Each of the three regions were given three separate briefs – The US (North America) team’s brief is to focus on women run SMEs. So how to overcome systemic social and financial challenges while starting and sustaining female-led businesses? Do they need to approach entrepreneurship differently?

For the London, UK (EMEA) team the theme was immigrant-led small business. Are immigrant-owned businesses the untapped potential? What are the challenges and opportunities of migrant founders and their businesses?

The theme for the APAC team is silver start-ups. A growing number of over-65s are now delaying retirement by starting their own firm, fueling a ‘grey business’ boom. What are their challenges, can we identify the most pertinent ones and solve those problems?

The first meet-up

Each of the teams kicked off their first virtual brainstorm session to find a campaign solution that would positively impact the lives of minority groups operating in the SME market. Each of the teams were also given mentors to help guide through the process.

Following is the list of the three teams:

Team US

  • Tom Spaven, brand director, Bombay Sapphire, North America (mentor)
  • Stephanie Walker, innovation marketing manager, Pepsico
  • Cassie Begalle, strategy and innovation brand Manager – U by Kotex, Kimberly-Clark
  • Iyanni Callender, junior art director, Strawberry Frog
  • Paola Ortega, associate strategy director, DDB Chicago
  • Michael Rodriguez, content strategist, 3 Leches Creative

Team UK

  • Arjoon Bose, marketing head- culture & brand experience (Europe-Australasia), General Mills (mentor)
  • Andre Campbell, partnerships lead, Mercedes-Benz
  • Fatima Diez, head of marketing, MunchFit
  • Shannie Mears, co-founder & talent chief, The Elephant Room
  • Jade Nodinot, former creative associate, BlackBook London
  • Emma Luxton, former senior account executive, Avantgarde London

Team APAC

  • Erica Kerner, SVP, marketing strategy & partnerships, ONE Championship (mentor)
  • Triveni Rajagopal, global digital director, skin cleansing and BPC, Unilever
  • Chandini Malla, senior manager, Diageo
  • Bryan Martin, social media executive, Reprise Digital
  • Adrianne Pan, planner, Havas Singapore

Team US: A fact-finding mission

Gender equality is at risk of being set back decades in the current climate – not just minorities in general, but especially women in it. In the US, the focus is on women-owned SMEs, looking at how female-led businesses can overcome systemic social and financial challenges, as well as addressing the different approaches that this cohort might have to entrepreneurship in order to succeed.

One such challenge was posed by keynote speaker Victoria Monsul Singolda, owner and creative director of Iris & Virgil, who discussed that though it might be true that for women-led businesses, their vulnerabilities as women and as small business owners are compounded, there needs to be a gender-smart approach because not all women-led businesses are the same.

“I never really thought of myself as a female business owner, I’m just a business owner. Maybe because my mother was very dominant in the household, she was a student, she was a business owner, she was a mum, we always saw her, we were always together. Maybe that’s why I never thought that there was something different or special being a girl.”

Headed up by mentor Tom Spaven from Bombay Sapphire, the team immediately honed into “resilience” and “impact” as the insights towards this gender-smart approach.

The team delved into discussions to align on common goals and objectives. The first step was to focus on the challenges in order to find the most creative solution – with three key take-aways that these women are lacking: Knowledge and resources to tap into; a community to help them venture into this new world; and platforms available to really share and have people learn more about.

The team then decided that the initial insight-led approach would begin with a fact-finding mission to assess the situation and the scale of the problem that the campaign needed to solve; followed by the consumer insight to understand the deep motivations and needs of the target to ultimately give the barrier they need to start to push against in order to solve the problem; and finally, culture listening around this topic – all of which would help to get a clear, sharpened brief about the real problem they are trying to solve.

Team EMEA: Move from ‘pivot to evolve’

On the other side of the Atlantic, Team EMEA, led by mentor Arjoon Bose from General Mills, tackled the untapped potential of ethnic minority and immigrant-owned founders, their challenges and opportunities.

“The last few months have been testing and I think we’ve all come up with a ton of learning. But I think we’re at that stage right now where we’re needing to move from pivot to evolve,” said Bose. “A growth mindset is what we’re going to have to need as we come out of this and prepare to get stronger and accelerate.”

After hearing from keynote speakers Sharon Jandu, director, Yorkshire Asian Business Association and director, Northern Asian Power List; and Steph Douglas, founder, Don’t Buy Her Flowers, it was clear that a heavy emphasis on networking, relationships and experiences, along with access to digital technologies, were key in bringing this community together.

“For an SME, they are so busy doing what they do that they don’t have the time or the capacity to think about what they can do – or they don’t have the networks to enable them to get the contacts to get investments or to get ideas. They are constantly running on a treadmill, trying to do and keep what they are doing alive. How can we stop them becoming so absorbed in their business that they can actually distance themselves and look at it from an aerial perspective?” asked Jandu.

The team identified the need to listen and learn directly from migrant-led business owners themselves to understand their experience, their struggles and challenges with direct feedback through focus groups and on-the-ground research. This would allow them to narrow down into one or two sectors that need the drive and support. They identified Facebook’s own small business community as a great place to start to create a questionnaire in order to gain invaluable insights to help shape their strategy.

“The opportunity that digital gives us to connect these immigrant-owned businesses with each other and provide each other with their own experience and their own knowledge can be a very valuable thing that we could leverage if it’s relevant to their challenge,” said Fatima Diez.

Team APAC: Reinventing and re-energising culture

With a growing number of over 65s now delaying retirement and fuelling a ‘grey business’ boom, the focus for Team APAC was on overcoming the challenges faced by the silver start-ups, particularly when it comes to navigating through the coronavirus pandemic.

Mentored by Erica Kerner from ONE Championship, the team was presented with a keynote talk by Jeremy Nguee, founder, Preparazzi Gourmet Catering; Batu Lesung Spice Company; who helped his mother set up Mrs. Kueh, a local sweet treat business. They touched upon some of the unique experiences and challenges of their business that they ran from home.

Hoping to learn from this experience and translate these lessons to help support silver entrepreneurs and home-based businesses through his volunteering role in the Hawkers United Facebook community, Nguee said: “I think this is going to be a very, very big market. There are a lot more home-based businesses coming up because of high unemployment in the market.”

Inspired by the talk, the team decided to focus on Singapore food culture and food service industry run by silver entrepreneurs, that has an international dimension throughout much of its history but continues to retain features firmly rooted in the locality so that the global and local are not always distinct. The team wanted to understand the different segments of businesses and the landscape in which they were working in.

“The complexities of Asia, the complexities of the segment, the types of digital, could become such a beast,” says Kerner. “My instinct is to start with the data. Starting a business now, no matter what your age is a challenge and a lot of small businesses are obviously struggling to survive. We’ve got a lot of things to think about. What aspect of this do we want to try to unbuckle?” asked Kerner. “In Singapore we are losing a lot of that Hawker culture and if we can find a way to re energise it, and bring more people back into it, it’s good for all of Singapore culture.”

The next steps

Over the upcoming weeks, the teams will continue to work on their campaign and then subsequently present the big idea for solving that problem.

The final ideas will be entered in The Drum Social Purpose Awards.

The Drum consulting editor, Sonoo Singh, said: I’m inspired to see the true power of marketing when used to promote issues that are critical to our societies, persuade a change in behaviours, and influence a positive shift in behavior that would benefit our environment. Having been involved with all the teams, I cannot wait to see the final outcome of this very challenging brief.”

By 

Sourced from The Drum