Organic reach is dead. Literally. If you have managed a Facebook page from 2009 on, you have probably experience this first-hand. In the early days of Facebook business pages, life was good. You posted to your page and everyone who liked it saw the post and engaged with it. By 2014, things changed significantly. According to Hubspot, the average organic reach for a Facebook page dropped from 16 percent to 6.5 percent.
Flash forward to 2018 and life is not the same as it once was for business owners on Facebook. In January 2018, Facebook announced that they were ‘shift ranking’ to make News Feeds more about connecting with people and less about consuming media in isolation. So, what does that mean for you as a business owner with a Facebook page?
Are you ready to hire a social media manager to take on your accounts and elevate your company’s digital presence?
Congratulations! Hiring help is an important and necessary step when you are an entrepreneur. Taking the leap of faith to outsource your social media is an exciting time, however it’s not something that can be rushed. Hiring the wrong person can lead to brand disaster.
Here’s what you need to look for when hiring a company or individual to run your social media for you.
We live in a world of constant notifications and updates. Your friend is posting pictures of her glamorous holiday and you're sitting on the couch downing your second glass of wine, wondering why you can't afford to go on vacation or do anything fun.
The truth is we live in a FOMO world, and social media is making it harder for us to live in the moment and actually enjoy our lives. Instead, we obsess over what other people are doing and how many likes our last Instagram photo received. Did we lose you at FOMO? FOMO means "fear of missing out." Which is easy to feel when you constantly see your friends and family updates on social media.
I recently learned that the hashtag was actually invented by a Twitter user in 2007 and not the company itself. In fact, they initially rejected the idea, thinking it was for nerds! Since then, hashtags have become such an integral feature of the social media world that I suspect my future children won’t ever refer to the “#” symbol as a pound sign.
Although hashtags have been around for over a decade I still see people using them ineffectively all the time. I’ve put together some basic dos and don’ts so that you can be a #socialmediaqueen. Or at least someone who knows how to hashtag properly.
When you think of the word brand, you may associate it with a business or organization. However, a brand is much bigger than that. Brands not only represent large companies, such as Lululemon or Coca Cola, they represent people, like you and me.
One of the best quotes about branding that has continuously resonated with me is this:
“Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.” Jeff Bezos, CEO and Founder of Amazon
It's no surprise that social media is important as a business owner. If you are looking to market your business for a fraction of the cost compared to traditional advertising, look no further than social media.
Are you a business owner looking to capitalize on your social media? Are you ready to get serious about defining your social media strategy and goals in 2018? Join us for Social Media 101 for Business on February 10, 2018 at the ATB Entrepreneur Centre in Edmonton!
In this two hour interactive workshop we will cover the basics of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram, including what it takes to create a great social media strategy. We will also touch on the basics of setting up Facebook advertisements.
Participants will have the opportunity to apply their knowledge in group activities throughout the session. Participants will leave with workbooks to complete that will leave them feeling more confident than ever with social media.
Interested in attending? Tickets are only $49 + GST!
We say this every year, but it is truly hard to believe that another year is coming to a close. 2017 has been an amazing year filled with learning opportunities, growth and meeting new people. All of which we absolutely love!
While there are so many things we could talk about from the year, here are a few of our favourite memories and highlights from 2017:
What is the return on investment from social media? This is probably the number one question I get from any prospective or current client. And you're probably wondering it yourself, hence the reason you clicked on this blog.
What is the benefit of paying someone (like us) to manage your social media for you? Well, obviously if you have a business, the goal at the top of your mind on any given day is to increase sales and have more money coming into your bank account. That's what we all want. But it's not that easy!
Marketing is all about three things: know, like and trust.
Everywhere you look there are social media contests. Click like, tag two friends and share this post to be entered to win something awesome!
Contests are a popular way to drive engagement and build your brand. However, there are a few things to keep in mind before you kick-off your next social media contest. One very important item we should address right away is the rules. Yes, social media has rules. Facebook specifically has a list of rules on what you can and cannot do with contesting.
Is this ground-breaking information to you? It shouldn't be! Here's one of the most common rules that we see broken time and time again. Can you guess what it is?
Share this post to win! Tag two friends to enter!
*Insert eye-rolling here*
This is a big no-no on Facebook. Here's what they have to say about it:
"Promotions may be administered on Pages or within apps on Facebook. Personal Timelines and friend connections must not be used to administer promotions (ex: “share on your Timeline to enter” or “share on your friend's Timeline to get additional entries”, and "tag your friends in this post to enter" are not permitted)."
Did we just crush your contest ideas? Sorry!
Don't worry! There are still great (legal) alternatives to contesting. The main thing to keep in mind with any contest is that you need to keep your barriers to entry very low to drive engagement. Asking people to do a million things for one entry will result in less people entering your contest.
Instagram Contest Idea
Instagram is a great way to build organic content and user content. Poppy Barley does an amazing job of encouraging their customers to share their product photos with the hashtag #LuxuryForThePeople. When you click on this hashtag, over 1,100 images pop-up! This is marketing gold, people! Not only are you building a loyal social following, you're stocking your own content calendar with photos people actually care about. Not just non-stop stock photography!
Try creating a signature hashtag for your brand. Use that hashtag on everything and encourage your followers to use it. It might take a while to take off, but it's an easy contest idea and will guarantee you an endless supply of content if done properly!
Facebook Contest Idea
And we are back to biggest criminal of them all, Facebook contests! So, you can't get people to share to their timeline, and you can't get them to tag two friends... so what can you do?
Keep it simple!
One really simple contest idea is to pose a question to your audience. Example:
"We've reached 1,000 followers on Facebook. To celebrate, we're giving away "x"! All you have to do to enter is like this post and comment with your favourite color of "x" to be eligible to win. Contest closes October 16, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. (MST).
Pretty easy, right?
Simplicity is your friend and it's legal :)
What are your pet peeves with social media contesting? Let us know in the comment section below.
Until next time friends,
P.S. If you're looking for help setting up your next contest, reach out to us! Simplified Social would love to help.
Wedding bells are ringing as I am preparing for my upcoming wedding this January (this is also why you have not seen a blog from Simplified Social in a while!). I am so excited for the big day, even though I am starting to get ancy about a few items!
As a social media consultant/addict, I have had a few friends and family ask me how I am going to incorporate social media on my big day. Am I going to let people Instagram me walking down the aisle? Do I have a hashtag? The answers are yes and obviously!
I really do not care about the no phone policy during the ceremony. I know some couples have opted out of letting their guests snap pictures, but let's be honest, people don't listen anyways. The last three weddings I have attended, the officiant has clearly stated no phones- yet I look around and see everyone sneaking pictures and blatantly disregarding the instructions. I know the overall ceremony pictures have a better look without phones, but that is not my main concern for the day.
And I mean let's be honest, I paid $2,000.00 for my dress and $250.00 for hair and makeup, I would love for you to Snapchat or Instagram me looking my finest.
As someone who has heavily utilized social media to engage guests and enhance event experiences, here are three ways I am incorporating social media into my wedding day.
1. A Signature Hashtag
This is cliché and not news to anyone. Almost every wedding I have attended in the last two years has a hashtag. Hashtags are a great way to get your guests engaged on social. It is also a great way to easily find photos in the days following the wedding by simply clicking on the hashtag itself.
The problems I have found with wedding hashtags in the past is the ease of use. If you are using a hashtag, make it simple enough for your guests to use- even after a few cocktails! Having an overly complicated hashtag will make it hard for guests to use, therefore no one will even use it.
Another important thing to keep in mind with hashtags is that it's better to start using them sooner rather than later. Use them on your engagement photos on Instagram, put the hashtag on your invitation, literally spam people with them. This will allow your guests to easily pick up on the trend on the day of the wedding instead of wondering, "what was their hashtag again?".
I have put my hashtag on my invitations, my wedding website and on literally every social media post about my wedding (although I am trying not to spam my Instagram followers with non-stop couple photos).
If you are really stuck with trying to think of a witty hashtag, I recommend checking out this hashtag generator from Wedding Wire. It get's the ball rolling for ideas.
Treat your hashtag like any marketing campaign. The sooner you start your marketing, the more posts you have, the more it will be utilized on your event day.
2. Ohhhhhh, Snap!
If you're like any other millennial in this world, you know Snapchat comes out in full force when you have had a few drinks. Those stories that you post under the influence of tequila shots, the ones that probably get deleted in a sober self-refelction in the morning, this is what I am talking about! I am making Snapchat geo-filter for my wedding. When my guests are pulling out the snapchat filters, they will be able to scroll and see a custom filter made for my wedding.
The beauty of this feature is that not only is it relatively inexpensive, Snapchat helps you design your filter which is a savior for those, like myself, who are not graphic designers.
Essentially, all you have to do is pick your design, pick your geo-fence location (which you can easily do by entering your venue address) and then set the amount of time that you want the filter to last. For my wedding, I chose the option where my filter will become active 30 minutes before my ceremony and stay active until 2:00 a.m. This was only $22.00 (USD). Not a bad price for an engaging, fun social media option for guests! I am pretty sure that more than half of my guests are on social media so I am hoping this option will be used, heavily!
3. #InstaFamous aka a Live Instagram Wall
Okay, this is by far my favourite part of my social media wedding strategy. I have been to many events where we set up live tweet walls. Live tweet walls are so much fun and a great way to engage your guests! I have had many events trending on Twitter just from implementing a live feed. Why? Because people like to feel noticed. Having a live wall encourages people to pick up their phone and post about the experience they are having at your event.
When planning my social strategy for my wedding, I thought heavily about this option. I want to find a way to encourage people to head to Instagram, use my hashtag but also feel noticed. Instead of running a PowerPoint in the background the entire night, I will instead be hosting a live Instagram wall. Anyone that uses the hashtag will have their photo displayed on the big screen.
This could get potentially messy as the night progresses, but there is also a great option where you can moderate the photos before they hit the big screen. To be honest, I am not overly concerned about this. As long as people keep it semi-pg and don't offend my Grandma, we're good!
I plan on using Wedding Hashtag Wall for this feature.
These are three very inexpensive, user-friendly social media options for your wedding. How have you utilized social media at weddings? I'd love to hear more in the comments section below!
Until next time,
Alex is the Founder and Lead Social Media Consultant of Simplified Social. Simplified Social is an Alberta-based organization dedicated to making social media easy and affordable for business owners.