4 Ways to Use Social Media to Generate Leads

social media how toDo you use social media to generate inbound leads for your business?

Are you unsure about where and how to focus your efforts to meet your lead generation goals?

According to HubSpot’s Inbound Marketing Annual Report, social media produces almost double the marketing leads of trade shows, telemarketing, direct mail or PPC.

If you’re starting a lead generation campaign, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ are all excellent places to begin, but knowing how to pull leads from the conversations that happen on these platforms takes some knowledge and practice.

In this article, I’ll share 4 ways you can use social media to generate inbound marketing leads for your business.

#1: Twitter Chats

Twitter chats are frequently scheduled discussions hosted by a Twitter account. Each chat uses a particular hashtag so that other Twitter users can follow the conversation even though topics change with each discussion.

Because of the focused audience communities that participate in Twitter chats, they are a great place to generate leads for your business.

small biz chat

The #SmallBizChat is an example of a Twitter chat that successfully engages its community every week.

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How to Target Only Your Customers With Facebook

social media how toWhat if you could reach your existing customers while they’re on Facebook?

Does the idea of displaying a Facebook ad only to your prospects list sound interesting?

This could give your marketing a boost and help build your brand’s image on Facebook.

In this post, I’ll show you two ways to use Facebook’s Custom Audiences to connect with your customers and prospects on Facebook.

And I’ll also show you how to create and use your first custom audience.

build brand image

How do you build your brand's image on Facebook?

What’s a Custom Audience?

Your business undoubtedly has a database of customers. You may be using that database to keep email addresses, phone numbers, Facebook user IDs and app user IDs.

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How to Drive More Facebook Traffic to Your Website

social media how toAre you using Facebook ads to drive traffic to your website?

Did you know that when people share your website content on Facebook, you can turn that shared content into a Facebook ad?

You can do that with Domain Sponsored Stories.

Domain Sponsored Stories are inexpensive and easy to run, and you don’t need a Facebook Page to start a campaign.

In this blog post, you’ll learn what Domain Sponsored Stories are and how you can create your own today.

What Are Domain Sponsored Stories?

A domain is a website that you control.

A Sponsored Story is a Facebook ad that promotes the action performed by a Page or user’s friend, follower or fan.

A Domain Sponsored Story, then, is a Facebook ad that will promote a Facebook user’s interaction with a website that is under your control.

What Do Domain Sponsored Stories Look Like?

domain sponsored story

This Domain Sponsored Story came from my friend Emeric, but it could have just as easily come from a public figure I follow or from a Page that I like.

As you can see, the only difference between this Domain Sponsored Story and a typical post is the “Sponsored” tag at the end.

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Facebook Reduces Ad Options: This Week in Social Media

social media researchWelcome to our weekly edition of what’s hot in social media news. To help you stay up to date with social media, here are some of the news items that caught our attention.

What’s New This Week?

Facebook Streamlines Ad Offering: Facebook says they plan to “streamline the number of ad units from 27 to fewer than half of that” while mapping all of their ads to “the business objectives marketers care about—be it in-store sales, online conversions, app installs, etc.”

facebook ad

Facebook will eliminate redundant ads. "This includes removing the Questions product for Pages because marketers can simply ask a question in a post and get answers in comments."

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How to Convince Your Skeptical Boss That Facebook Marketing Works

social media how toIs your business on Facebook?

Do you need to convince your boss—or a client—that Facebook is a worthy marketing investment?

In this article I’ll show you 7 things you can do to convince decision-makers of the value Facebook.

#1: Assess Your Goals

Before you can convince anyone that they need to be on Facebook, you’ll need to understand what they want to accomplish.

Remember that not every business needs to be on Facebook.

If you are in a B2B that sells concrete to two or three huge companies, LinkedIn might be a better fit.

goal

Not all businesses need to be on Facebook. Assess your business goals first. Image source: iStockPhoto.

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How to Track Your Facebook Ad Conversions

social media how toDo you know how to measure your return on investment (ROI) on Facebook ads?

Do you know how to tell if your Facebook ad is accomplishing your objective?

In this article, I’ll cover what Facebook conversion tracking and offsite pixels are, why they matter and how to start tracking the conversions of your Facebook ads today.

Facebook Ad ROI?

You’ve probably heard the refrain that you can’t measure ROI on Facebook.

Let me be clear—measuring the ROI of all of your Facebook efforts is dangerous. You are performing more than just a sales role—one of customer service as well.

And you absolutely can measure the ROI of your Facebook advertising efforts, particularly when you’re looking to drive an action that can be assigned a value. This is done with conversion tracking and offsite pixels.

Return on investment is when you consider profits in relation to capital invested. Image: iStockPhoto

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How Your Business Can Use the New Facebook Cover Photos

social media how toAre you familiar with the new Facebook cover photo rules?  You are now able to put calls to action and your website or address information in your Facebook cover photo, but there are still text restrictions.

Would you like some inspiration for what your business can do with a cover photo?

Many people have not updated their cover photos to be in compliance.

In this article I’ll tell you what’s changed and show you 9 examples and how you can leverage the new rules to boost your business.

Facebook’s New Rules

As of March 6, Facebook’s rules state that cover photos may not include more than 20% text. But the previous restrictions that were in place were removed (i.e., no calls to action, no websites and no address information).

The maximum 20% text rule also applies to any photo in a Facebook ad as well, so keep that in mind with your next ad campaign.

There was some initial confusion about how the 20% text area was measured, so Facebook came out with a post that clarified how this area was calculated and what was acceptable.

cover compliance

Check your Facebook cover photo with the Cover Compliance Tool.

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How Marketers Are Using Paid Social Media: New Research

social media researchDo you use paid social media ads such as Facebook ads or promoted tweets?

Would you like to know how other marketers are using paid social media?

A recent survey (by Vizu, a Nielsen company) analyzed the opinions of digital marketers’ use of paid social media marketing.

This article will highlight seven key findings from the research.

#1: 65% of Marketers Increasing Paid Social Media Ad Budgets for 2013

The majority of advertisers surveyed revealed that they plan to increase their paid social media advertising budgets for 2013. As social media use continues to explode among U.S. users, marketers are following closely by investing heavily to stay in front of their customers.

consumer brand spending

When it comes to keeping up with consumers, brands are putting their money where their mouth is.

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How to Target Facebook Ads Based on Purchase History, Lifestyles and More

social media how toWould you like to get more out of your Facebook advertising?

Did you know you can now target Facebook ads based on people’s purchase history, job roles and other external insights from major data providers?

Facebook continues to roll out advertising tools that allow marketers to target their ideal customer in ways not seen before.

What Are Partner Categories?

Within the past year, Facebook has launched Custom Audiences, Conversion Tracking, Sponsored Results, Lookalike Audiences and a whole lot more.

Partner Categories is the latest tool added to your Facebook toolbox. Here’s what you need to know and how to use Facebook’s Partner Categories to reach the audience you want with your Facebook advertising.

Facebook partnered with Acxiom, Datalogix and Epsilon to make Partner Categories a reality. These partners provide data on Facebook users’ online and offline activities away from Facebook to create more refined targeting opportunities.

Up until recently, you could target ads to Facebook users based only on the information they provide in their profiles (age, gender, school, location, employer) and both precise and broad interests.

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