Effective Use Of Social Media

Social media, vero beach,Orange county, sebastian, melbourne, palm bayPosting to Facebook and LinkedIn

I am in a great BNI group, and most of my BNI team members have heard my pitch for well over a year now. I tell them every week some version of this, Bill Fletcher at social-cindy.com builds gorgeous, high functioning websites. They are beautifully designed, but they also take into account the look and feel that the end user wants. They are for the most part SEO optimized and they perform well in the search engines.

I would love to say that because of all these features he builds into the sites they will rise to the top of Google and stay there forever. But it just ain’t so. The search engines, Google in particular, pay attention to how much effort you put into your web presence. If you aren’t also promoting your site with a blog and the various social media outlets, they lower your search rankings. I don’t think most people understand that no matter how good a business yours is, if you do nothing to establish a strong web presence, it is going to be difficult for people to find your business on the internet.

I am lucky that most of my fellow BNI members are “getting it”, and they have built Facebook Pages, gone on and signed up on LinkedIn, and they now have a Google + presence. I have LIKED their pages, and I promote their Facebook and LinkedIn posts at no cost, I am proud to know they are listening to my advice. There is just one more thing I want to let them know.

The very best way to gather Google juice on the web is to do this:

Post your activities and your business advice on YOUR BLOG

Put a link to that post on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google + and Pinterest if applicable.

Share your blog post on your personal Facebook page as well.

That is the most bang for your buck method for sharing. Not only does posting to your blog, which is hopefully on your website, let Google know you are serious, but it causes activity on all of your other social media outlets when you push those posts out.

It’s killing three birds with one stone!! Only, please don’t tweet me about this, no actual birds were harmed in the making of this post.

If you are like several members of my BNI group, and Bill’s BNI group and all of these words sound like just so much gobledy gook, call me, and we can work out a price and a posting schedule that works for your budget!!

Over and out…

Social Cindy

Congratulations Officer Craig Urbanczyk,

How Many Likes Do You Need?

Facebook LIKES are all the rage. It reminds me of when teenagers first got on Facebook, they friended everyone who asked. They friended friends of friends, and Facebook Likestotal strangers, because why? Because it’s cool to have a thousand friends, right? After a while a pattern emerged and they realized having a 1000 friends was maybe not so much fun, and they really only wanted to engage with 50 of those who were connected to them on Facebook.

The same goes with Likes for your Facebook Page. You can promote your Facebook Page, place Ads for them and you can hire companies to get you a slew of likes.  It’s fun to see 1000 likes on your Facebook page, but I watch social media sites very carefully. Likes don’t equal engagement. In fact it sometimes seems like the more likes you see on a page, the less engagement there is. As I say that, I will qualify that on some sites, where the LIKES are truly people who are engaged in a converstation on your page, those are very productive.

Likes, to our way of thinking are usually the most fruitful when you have a clientele that is between the ages of 30 and 50. These are the people who are most active on Facebook and use it to share with their friends.  If you have a product line, and you run promotions, those are the best use of Facebook pages and likes. Your clients will share your Facebook page and help to get likes for you. That’s not to say that every type of business doesn’t benefit from Facebook pages, LinkedIn, Yelp and Pinterest. For many of our clients, Facebook engagement equates to ranking on the internet. Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest, Google+, plus blogging can take your website from nowhere to the first few pages of the search engines in a relatively short period of time.

We know that LIKES are important, but the way we use Facebook and other social media is as a tool to drive up search engine rankings. There are some customers who get regular referrals from their Facebook and LinkedIn pages, and we love that. But for others, it’s the power of the combined social media and blogging that ultimately drives traffic to their site and prompts people to call for their services or order from their website.

I love it when I ask my customers how it’s going and they tell me with excitement, Cindy tell Bill I got another call off my website today. Would you like calls from your site? Call us and see if we can help.

 

social cindy, over and out…

 

Congratulations Officer Craig Urbanczyk,

Who Hires Someone to do Social Media?

ISocial media, vero beach, sebastian, melbourne, palm bay must tell you that I think some of the best social media comes from within companies who do it themselves. I’ve watched sites where they have a person or persons on staff, who understands how to use social media and knows their audience. Over time they learn just what to share and when to share it in order to give potential customers a better vision of who they are as a company.

They will take photos and post them to Instagram and Pinterest, put those on their blog and give their viewers an inside look at how the company runs, as well as give it a more human aspect. They pay attention to what their client base responds to. It helps to be an outgoing person, who doesn’t mind or even likes writing and spending hours a day combing the internet for interesting stories that pertain to your business, or to the keywords you want your site to be found for.

If doing social media in house is such a good thing, who would hire social cindy? The kinds of companies we usually work for are those that understand the need for social media and know that they just don’t have the resources to hire someone within the company. Those people hire us and stick with us. Then are those who really do try to do it themselves. They have us set up their social media presence, train them on how to use everything, and for a month or so all is well. Their site starts to get noticed, they hit a busy spell, and the words “I will do it tomorrow” come out of their mouth. And then tomorrow is next week, and next week is next month.  More important projects are going to come up, and it still won’t get done unless you are devoted to your web presence. Those are the next set of people who will become our social cindy customers.

A social media company can provide you with a consistent, persistent and engaging social media presence. If you still want to do it yourself, hire us to train you to be your own social media coach. We can check up on your social media and blog, give you ideas, and help you keep it consistent.

Thanks for stopping by…come again.

Mobile Responsive Website Design and Social Media Services from Social-Cindy.comg piece of your marketing puzzle

 

 

 

Social Cindy’s Advice

Social Media - Orange County & Vero Beach

Spread the word..

Social Cindy has been busy lately. We are building 9 new websites and we have given several presentations about social media over the past couple of months. I think the one that was the most fun was talking to the Marketing Class at IRC Vero Beach.  It is an honor that people ask us to share what we do with them.

For those of you who aren’t ready to hire us, the question of how to build a social media plan is one I thought I could give you some answers to here in our blog. This is not a thorough step by step process, if you need that, read this first, then leave me a comment and I will make something more detailed for you depending upon your needs.

If you are one of the amazing students at Indian River College here in Vero, my number is on the website here, if you need help, give us a call.

How to build a Social Media Campaign:

  • First, decide who your target audience will be:
  • Example:  Are businesses your target?
  • Is your audience interested in a sport?
  • What is your target demographic?

Choose a name for your Blog or Website that has something to do with your topic or interest.

  • If you want to build a blog about cooking, naming the blog “Cindy Fletcher” is not going to help people find you. A blog title such as “Cookies by Cindy” will do much better. People always want to use their names or something really “catchy”, but remember that you must think about what words people will be using in their search. If they are trying to find a great cookie recipe, they won’t be searching for your name but will be searching for great cookie recipes.

Build a visually pleasing Website or Blog.  We prefer to use “Wordpress”, but there are many sites available.

  • It doesn’t have to be full of fancy effects.  But, it needs to be visually pleasing, easy to navigate, and show your contact information right up-front.  And, it is so important to use categories and tags on all of your blog or web posts.

Search engines will scan your site and blog posts and it’s important to make it easy for them to know what you are all about. My posts will often have several categories, as they will have information that applies to more than one subject. What are categories? They are words or a combination of words that clearly tell the search engines what your blog post is about. For example this post will probably have the “Social Cindy” blog as a category, as well as “social media” as a category.  I will probably use Facebook, LinkedIN, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube as categories as well because I am discussing all of these things in this blog post.

Pick Three Major Social Media Outlets to start with:

1. Blogs with Key Words

2. Facebook Pages

3. Twitter or Pinterest

4. OR for your project would a series of YouTube videos be more engaging?

 

Building a Content Calendar

Those who don’t plan, plan to fail.  Even if your plan goes off in some other direction you are planning for success.  Your plan does not have to be “set in stone” or rigid.  In fact, it is important that it be flexible due to directional changes and, most importantly, you will need to change your content if you do not get the results that you want.

1. What should you write about?  Don’t be too serious about this.  Just because I do social media, that’s not all I am interested in. And, if I blog about something a little different, I could attract someone new.

2. Content rules.  We need to think about how we build our content as it will affect everything.

3. The most important thing with a blog or website is to get people to know, like and trust you…TRUST being the primary keyword.

4. Make time to listen.

5. Put something fun and whimsical into your content calendar

6. Pick photos that match your content; “visual” is important online

You will need content that builds trust and it  is:

1. Educational

2. Valuable

3. Entertaining

4. Testimonials

5. Videos

Remember, you can curate from other sources. Not every single post has to be original, find things you think are interesting and use them.   Just be careful to credit those sources, put contents in quotes and include a link to their site at the end or within your posts

Engage but don’t sell!

1.  Use the Blog posts to tell a story about you or your company

2. Facebook posts, to once again engage

3. Run contests

4. Ask questions

5. Solicit involvement and post

6. Create YouTube videos

FAQ’s:  People love being able to read answers to questions they might have and it is simple and direct without searching for content.  Also, it is something you can update regularly

Success stories:  It is really important to use these, as well as introduce yourself by telling a 30 second success story.

Why should you blog?

1. Websites that blog get 50% more visitors

2. Embrace being a publisher of content

3. Build momentum and create with intent

4. Speak in a “human” voice

5. Share or solve but, again, don’t sell

6. Do something unexpected

7. Play to your strengths

What makes good content?

In the case of the Green Home project, I would suggest:

A video diary of the process

How the home was originally conceived and designed

Why build a green home?

What makes it different or special?

Photos – lots of photos!  They tell a visual “story”

Hold events there and create momentum, as well as invite other members of the community to participate.

What are your ideas?

Don’t be afraid to post unexpected yet relevant information….a really good idea…

Vocabulary:

SEO:  Search Engine Optimization means using various internet resources to get your site noticed. Make certain your blog titles reflect your content, but are catchy and short

Make a point of seeking out other blogs, offer constructive, positive comments and link them to your site or social media

Bill, can tell you more (Does more more information need to be inserted here?)

Keywords:  Words that people may use to search for information you have using various search engines

Examples:  Homes, green homes, energy efficient homes, green homes in Vero Beach, Sheriff’s department, news in Vero Beach, charities supported by the Sheriff’s in Vero Beach, events in Vero Beach, what Sherriff’s do

Blog:  Think of it like an online diary or newspaper – it’s a way to put so many keywords into one place.

Example:  “Social Cindy” is a national organization that promotes small companies via blog posts, our Facebook page (links inserted here), LinkedIN and Twitter. (links to LinkedIN and Twitter inserted here)

Social-Cindy.com has been in business for several years now and we have found social media to be an effective tool for boosting the Google placement of the websites we build. Facebook pages only enhance the Google authority of our sites, and we often use our Social Cindy Pinterest page to go out and meet people who would not normally come to our www.socialcindy.com website.

 

So that’s all I can think of right now. Like I said before, if you need more, just ask me. My name is social cindy for a reason, I am, my staff is , easy to talk to and social. We like  what we do, and we don’t mind sharing.

Over and out..

Social cindy

Seacoast On-Line Marketing Event: Thank You!

A big thank you to all of you who took time out of your evening yesterday to join us for the On-line Marketing event presented by Seacoast National Bank.  I am afraid it was not possible in one evening to tell you everything there is to know about this important topic, but hopefully we were able to raise your interest level, and begin an ongoing discussion.

Several of you have asked where you might view the video again so for your viewing pleasure here it is:

If you would like to continue the discussion about how you can harness the power of on-line marketing in your business please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Social Cindy today.

We want to thank Seacoast National Bank, the evening’s sponsors, and my fellow panelists, for their willingness to bring us information to make our local businesses more successful.

Please take a minute, and say hi at the Seacoast Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/SeacoastNationalBankCommunity

 

When you  “like” the Seacoast Facebook page from your business page, and leave a nice comment,  Bill and I will follow the link back to your Facebook page and do the same.   We each began a relationship with over fifty people last evening.  Why not develop and strengthen those relationships even further  on Facebook.  After all, that is what social media is all about.

Sincerely,

Cindy & Bill Fletcher

Social-Cindy.com

(949) 813 3860

 

Social Cindy Opens East Coast HQ in Vero Beach, Florida

Social Cindy is proud to announce the establishment of our East Coast Headquarters in beautiful Vero Beach, Florida.

Located along the Treasure Coast roughly midway between Cape Canaveral, and the metropolitan Miami area, idyllic Vero Beach provides the perfect setting to offer our special blend of services.  Social Cindy is geared toward helping the small business operator squeeze more business from their existing web presence.

Social Cindy believes every small business should enjoy the benefits of a consistent and persistent  social medial presence.  Being a small business owner  for many years Social Cindy recognize that many business owners are far too busy doing what they do best to maintain a social media services in Vero Beach, Floridacomprehensive web presence.  Social Cindy exists to provide  small business owners an affordable way to have a comprehensive web presence,  even  though they may lack the time, expertise, or desire, to manage one themselves.

Social Cindy can take care of everything  including strategic planning,  blogging (using the industry leading WordPress blog platform,) and  social media profile management.   How do we keep it affordable? Simple, we let you name your price.  You specify a comfortable monthly budget and Social Cindy will design a “best bang for the buck” social media campaign for you.

We at Social Cindy look forward to meeting our new neighbors and becoming part of the discussion about their web presence.   We can be reached at by email at cindy@social-cindy.com, or by phone at (949) 813 3860.

Sincerely,

“Social” Cindy Fletcher

(949) 813 3860
cindy@social-cindy.com

Social Media Services – Vero Beach, Florida

Pinterest?

Hey Sam, you do that online stuff, right? What the heck is this Pinterest thingy that people keep inviting me to join? I have enough trouble just keeping up with Twitter and Facebook, why would I want to do something else?

Have you ever heard of a website called Pinterest? If not, then you’ve been missing out. Pinterest is a free site that will allow you to connect with people who share your interests and explore new and exciting products, travel options, art and upcoming technology. Through Pinterest, you can also browse and buy items you find.  Or you can create a Pin board and keep your dreams on there for that someday trip or purchase. It also connects you to people who share your interests, but in a very subtle way.

See what they have to say:

                       

“Here’s how it works:

1) When someone likes an image on a website they can pin it back to a board they’ve created on the Pinterest site. These boards can be named anything but fall under categories designated by the Pinterest team, like weddings/events, home décor, travel, etc.

2) Individuals can see pins by people whose boards they are following, or by searching through the most popular pins (most repinned), by category, by search term, or by price. If a user has typed in the price of the object in the comment area it will also appear on the top left corner of the image (this only happens when the dollar sign is typed into the comment area. No other money symbol – like € or £ – makes the price appear on the pin).

3) Every image has a comment area, link, and options to like or repin. Viewers can visit the site that housed the original image by clicking on the image or on the URL in the top right corner of the image.”

Although it was probably not their intent, Pinterest’s ability to become a leader in referral traffic is already established. SEO professionals have also realized the potential this social site can provide for products or services. And if nothing else, it’s a great way to relax for a few minutes and just look at beautiful photos…

 

Guest Blogger for this week

Sam Fletcher

Featuring Local Artist-Kathy Shapiro

You never know who you are sitting next to at a volunteer organization meeting. When my son, Sam, attended Dana Hills High School, I was the epitome of the “soccer Mom.” I was Vice-President of the PTA, I volunteered on the Water Polo Team, organized text book collection and distribution, and for three years was a member of the Grad Nite and Taste of Dana Committees. What some people on those committees did not know about me is that I was also running a company at the same time.  Like most “soccer Mom’s” I had another life.

Kathy

When we took time from our busy schedules to find out more about each other’s lives we found that many of  these women in the ranks of volunteers also had other talents. Let me give you just one example. For two of those high school years I worked with Kathy Shapiro on Water Polo and Grad Nite. Now I knew she was smart, creative, and able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. Anyone who disses us “soccer Mom’s” has never actually had to raise in excess of $100,000 for Grad Nite, pull great raffle and auction prizes out of thin air, and get 700 students to and from an event safely. It takes a colossal amount of effort and coordination, and Kathy was the leader and planner for  the Taste of Dana events, and a big contributor for two other Grad Nites that I worked on.

I knew she was a great photographer because she was always taking photos at swim and water polo events and I was lucky enough to see her in action. What I did not know was that she had a great talent for taking photography and turning it into art. Since the time when our children graduated and we all moved on from Dana Hills, Kathy has started to exhibit her photos all over Southern California and other parts of the country.  I am impressed, to say the least.

This past  April  her work was featured at Snap Flash 2012: CreateFixate All Photography Show, in Los Angeles, CA. Prior  to that Kathy put her art on display and in the permanent collection of Hoag Hospital in  Irvine, California. She has been in various juried exhibits from Los Angeles and Orange County to Middlebury, Vermont.  Press Releases state “Shapiro has received awards in each of the past two years’ Single Image Contest in B&W + Color photography magazine. “

Currently Kathy’s work is being shown at the Laguna Gallery of Contemporary Art. I intend to go and see it in person; in the meantime, I have been enjoying the pictures of her work posted on her Web site:www.KathyShapiro.com

Like I said, I knew Kathy as a warm and dynamic woman who took photos and worked hard alongside me to make our High School the best it could be. What I didn’t know was just  how talented she was in her art! Now I will be ever more careful with the labels I give to the people I meet..and happy to say I knew her when.

Go see her work… and tell her Cindy sent you.

Laguna Gallery of Contemporary Art | 611 South Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, CA 92651

 

 

Are You “Exporting” Your Social Media?

Have You Exported Your Social Media ? Are you sure of the answer? Maybe you have hired a company to perform your social media functions, if the price is very low, they are not doing your social media work themselves.

quality social media

When bidding on social media projects, although we have a good range of value pricing, we sometimes get underbid. While it’s always disappointing not to win in a competitive situation, I usually feel worse for the prospect than myself.

If you have been out on the web and you have read some of the blog posts that are out there,  many of those  posts  are truly of a poor quality. I would bet money on the fact that the worst of these posts are from blog mills, if you will. The bloggers, and I use that term loosely, will grab onto the latest headlines, and then they will put together a couple of paragraphs that mostly just string words together, and never actually address the topic they put in their headline.  Or they pick a catchy headline and list 10 reasons why you should, or should not do something, but it has little new information to impart. You hire what you think is a reputable company, then they “farm” out the work, pay $5 or $10 per blog and less for other social media while you are paying them  significantly more!!

It’s a joke. I suppose if your only objective is to fill your blog with keywords to push up the standing of your website that might be okay. But let me ask you this. What if, just by chance, you go out on a sales call, and the person you call on actually checks you out? He or she will go first to your Website, then to LinkedIn, maybe to your Facebook Page, and even Pinterest, and then your blog. You may have increased your web standing, but folks, this is not just about that, people are looking for the type of company you run, the type of person you are. If your company brand is one of honesty and integrity, and maybe you are an honest, hardworking person, what is a poorly written innocuous blog going to say about you and your services? And lest we forget, many of the blogs have automatic feeds in them that will post to your LinkedIn, Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter accounts every time you post.

If you are like most business owners, maybe you neglect to read your own blog regularly. How would it be to get all the way through a tough sales cycle, feel like you have clinched the deal, only to be told at the end that your company is not going to get their business?

Social media is like anything else for your business. All by itself, it will not be the whole solution to your marketing and PR, it is a tool in your arsenal. It’s always better to get the quality you may have to stretch a bit to afford, rather than to pay for something that won’t endure.  My Mom had a saying, she would say,” Cindy, in this life you get what you pay for”. She always shopped carefully for the best quality of food, clothing and furnishing that we could afford. We would look at the quality of the stitching in garments, of the construction in furniture, before we purchased anything.

I do the same thing in my life. What is the quality of construction that you want to represent your business? Don’t forget, once a post goes out with your company name on it, it is around on the web virtually forever. Make your decision based upon the value you will receive for the money, not just on the cost alone, and you will be much happier with the results.

social media practitioner, Cindy

www.social-cindy.com

Is Google Giving Priority to Google?

Something that we in the Web business have long suspected has come to light. It looks like Google has been putting its own interests above ours. There are allegations that the widely-known Web browser has been playing favorites when it comes to placement of certain sites within your search results; this was discovered only after the privacy policy on Apple’s Safari browser was breached. If you haven’t heard about that:

“Google (GOOGFortune 500) displays links to its own “vertical search services” differently than it does for links to competitors, the letter said. The commission said it is concerned that Google may be giving its own services preferential treatment over rivals.

Though the letter did not outline specifics, such Google services include local reviews, shopping listings and flight schedules, among others, which sometimes compete with companies like Yelp (YELP), Amazon (AMZNFortune 500), Priceline (PCLN) and Expedia (EXPE).”

 

Check it out at http://www.securitynewsdaily.com/1535-wsj-google-apple.html

 

http://money.cnn.com/2012/05/21/technology/google-antitrust/index.htm?iid=HP_LN

Guest Blogger sam fletcher