social media how toDo you need to raise funds to get your idea off the ground?

You’ve got a brilliant business idea, but your bank lacks your vision. (Or perhaps you lack the collateral.)

Maybe you reached out to friends and family, but you know they lost their shirts when your brother-in-law’s salmon-flavored energy drink flopped. Is this the death of your nascent business?

Not. So. Fast.

Social media is changing more than the way we market and communicate… It’s changing the way we raise capital.

Crowdfunding websites are popping up that connect entrepreneurs with investors, producers with patrons, and causes with contributors.

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social media how toAre you on YouTube? Are you getting the results you hoped for?

In this article I’ll share 8 actionable tips to enhance your YouTube marketing.

Why YouTube?

The most recent statistics on online video and YouTube are mind-blowing: Nielsen reported that Americans streamed 15 billion videos in the most recently recorded month (May 2011). While traditional TV viewing was up only 0.2% over last year, Internet video viewing was up 35% and mobile video viewing went up 20%.

Before you throw all your marketing dollars into YouTube, however, you might want to consider this other statistic: 35 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube… every minute. In the time it takes you to read this article, about two weeks of fresh content will be posted. Watch the video below and add another three days.

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social media how toIn the competitive world of search engine optimization (SEO), your business blog is a critical tool for your success.

Why is blogging so important to your search engine visibility? Because search engines serve up web pages—not websites—when people ask a question. And here’s the important part:

Every blog post is a new web page and every web page is another opportunity to rank well for another search term.

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social media viewpointsSocial media is transforming the way journalists break news.  Consider Robert Hernandez. He was searching for video on YouTube of the Bahrain protests.

He used filters to find videos from Bahrain and then sorted to find the most recent uploads. The top result had just been uploaded and had yet to be viewed. He watched it.

The shaky video was taken by someone in a crowd holding a cell phone. It shows a protester who gets shot and killed.

Record. Upload. View.

Without a news crew standing nearby, this death may have gone unnoticed and unrecorded, but through the power of a cell phone, the Internet and YouTube, this tragic event was captured forever.

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social media how toShould your website be social? Are you looking to turn that static website into an interesting social media–enabled destination?

Keep reading to discover how.

Should Your Site Be Social-Enabled?

There’s no doubt that social media is a powerful marketing and communication tool for businesses and non-profits that have embraced it.

Yet, for most of us, our websites are still where the rubber meets the road. It’s where you turn visitors into leads and prospects into customers. It’s where you build your lists and sell your goods.

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social media viewpointsHow will social media impact marketers and businesses in 2011? We sought expert opinions from a wide range of pros you’re likely familiar with.

Since we started Social Media Examiner in October 2009, we’ve published more than 280 articles. These original posts were written by dozens of social media professionals.

We decided to tap their knowledge and expertise to see what’s likely coming next year. Here are their predictions for where social media is headed in the next 12 months.

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social media how toDo you have a social media strategy? Does it involve content? Should it?

The other day I drove past a local convenience store that makes most of its profit from beer, Slush Puppies and beef jerky (not that there’s anything wrong with that). A big sign out front asked passers-by to Like them on Facebook.

“It’s official,” I thought. “Now every business in America has a Facebook page.”

Unfortunately, few businesses actually have a strategy for their Facebook page, or for the rest of their social media activity. They tweet, blog and set up a Facebook business page out of fear of being left behind, rather than as a way to engage their audience.

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social media how toLike their for-profit brethren, many non-profits understand that using social media can help them reach and engage their audience, create momentum and build community.

However, there’s uncertainty around how to create a sustainable social media campaign, although the tools are plentiful and often free.

Here are 21 ways non-profits can leverage social media:

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social media how toI’m always surprised at how few retail spaces take advantage of Twitter and Facebook (yes, there are exceptions). The costs are low, the risks are manageable and your customers are already using the platforms.

By engaging customers “where they live,” you can increase the foot traffic to your shop and grow your business.

Here are 5 steps to grow your retail business using Facebook and Twitter.

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