Research Shows Blogging a Top Focus for Marketers

social media researchDo you ever wonder what tactics, tools and strategies other social media marketers are using?

Regardless of how long you’ve been involved in social media, chances are you have some questions that you’d like answered.

Questions such as, “What are the best social management tools?” or “What are the best ways to engage my audience with social media?”

These and many more questions were answered in the 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report, which surveyed over 3000 marketers with the goal of understanding how they use social media to grow and promote their businesses.

Here are some interesting findings from the survey:

#1: Marketers Want Most to Learn About Blogging

When asked what social media platform they wanted most to master, 62% of marketers said blogging, putting it in first place slightly ahead of Google+. This answer is consistent with other studies, which show that the appetite for blogging education is growing.

An important trend to consider is that 28% of marketers now have mobile-optimized blogs. This is highly significant when you consider that the number of smartphone subscribers in the world has broken the 1 billion mark.

blogging takes first place graph

Blogging takes first place as the social media platform most marketers want to learn about.

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3 Ways Social Media Creates a Social Local Community

social media case studiesAre you looking for ways to engage with your employees and your local community?

Are you using social media to create awareness for the services you offer?

Keep reading as I reveal how a nursing home used social media to build a loyal local community.

Nursing Homes and Social Media?

Nursing homes, assisted-living facilities and rehab communities are not known for being active in social media—yet.

But changes in Medicare mean communication with patients and families and the employees who care for them is more important than ever.

wapakoneta activities

Wapakoneta Manor is one of 24 HCF Management facilities on Facebook.

“The way that we’re going to be paid and the way we’re going to be gauged is changing; it’s evolving as we speak,” said Scott Unverferth, director of operations at HCF Management in Lima, Ohio.

New pay-for-performance models are on the horizon for managed care companies such as HCF.

HCF has 27 facilities throughout Ohio and Pennsylvania that provide skilled nursing care, rehab care and assisted living. They have approximately 3,200 employees and have been in business since 1968.

In April 2012 they made the leap into social media and haven’t looked back.

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26 Ways to Create Engaging Content

social media how toAre you looking to create content that engages?

Does your content connect with people and encourage them to engage?

In this article I’ll show you 26 ways to make content that engages people, in an A-Z guide of tips.

#1: Authors Matter

Written content doesn’t exist without authors, whether constructing 140-character posts or 1000-word articles.  Not only do you want people who can write well (e.g., clear points, proper spelling and grammar, active voice), you need writers and team members who can think strategically about the content that will resonate most with your audience.

content creation

Creating good content is important for social media engagement.

We’ll talk about more specifics as we go down the list. For now, think strategy.

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How to Network Using LinkedIn Groups

social media how toAre you a member of a LinkedIn Group?

Do you spend time networking in LinkedIn Groups?

LinkedIn Groups are great way to build credibility and make new connections that can ultimately help grow your business.

With over 1.5 million LinkedIn Groups, it can be difficult to find relevant Groups and determine which ones might be the best for you to join. It’s also important to find Groups that are well-managed.

Unfortunately there are many LinkedIn Groups that are not well-managed, which makes the experience within these Groups less than optimal.

linkedin groups directory

You are sure to find a LinkedIn Group of interest to you.

Not to worry, I’m going to give you some insights on how to find the quality groups you can leverage most for your LinkedIn strategy!

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How to Generate More Leads With Your Blog: 5 Tips

social media how toDoes your business have a blog?

Would you like your blog to bring in more leads for your business?

You already know you need to create awesome blog content, but there’s more to business blogging than just that.

You also need to include a few tactics to help you bring in the leads you want.

Here are some useful tactics to entice and capture leads used by top marketing business blogs!

#1: Place Opt-In Forms Around Your Blog Content

There are several areas on your blog that you can use to introduce visitors to calls to action such as free trials, free consultations or a simple mailing list opt-in form. These areas include your header, sidebar, the end of blog posts, your About page and your footer.

Unbounce, a landing page software creator, encourages people to try their software or sign up for their mailing list in their sidebar and post footers.

unbounce options

Unbounce has lead generating calls to action in their sidebar.

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26 Social Media Marketing Tips from the Pros

social media how toAre you looking for actionable tips to improve your social media marketing?

Are you wondering what the common themes of social media experts are these days?

This April, 1,100 passionate marketers from every corner of the world traveled to San Diego for Social Media Marketing World (#SMMW13), to find out.

The number of conference takeaways and buzz was immense.

For this article, I’ve focused on 26 takeaways from SMMW13, including notable quotes by presenters and their session titles.

CATEGORY: Calls to Action

#1: Get More Leads With Calls to Action

Throughout the conference, the topic of calls to action (CTAs) came up in numerous sessions. What is a CTA?

social media call to action is an integral and often overlooked element of an effective social media strategy. Social media gets prospects, customers and the public primed to want to find out more about your offering or to engage with you further, but you must lead them to the next step in your sales or other conversion process.

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7 Ways to Improve Your Social Media Engagement

social media how toIs your company’s social media as stale as last month’s bread?

Would you like to get more people-to-people interaction and begin a real conversation with your audience on social media?

No matter your company’s industry or size, you can encourage these deeper connections and improve your social media engagement.

Here are some tips to help you encourage people-to-people interaction, whether you are on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Foursquare or Instagram.

#1: Use Facebook to Highlight Employees and Reach Out to Fans

Your company is only as good as your hardworking employees—so don’t be afraid to highlight them.

SEOmoz uses Facebook photo albums to highlight their employees.

The SEOmoz Facebook Page does an excellent job of this. Two examples in particular really jump out.

The “Then and Now” photo album: Employees provided photos from their youth along with recent photos of themselves. This is a great way to show fans the human side of SEOmoz. Plus, the baby pictures are adorable.

facebook seomoz employees

SEOmoz does a wonderful job of featuring employees, like in this “Then and Now” photo album.

The “What are Mozzers listening to?” photo album: All it took was snapping photos of employees with their headphones on and asking them what they were listening to. The result is an inside look at company culture.

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How to Improve Your Social Media Calls to Action

social media how toIs your audience responding to your social activities?

Have you integrated the right calls to action into your social media strategy?

A call to action is a way for you to entice your social media audience to focus their attention on the next action you want them to take.

Here are seven steps for crafting calls to action to get your social community to do what you’d like them to and transform your social media marketing to get the results you want.

#1: Determine What You Want Prospects to Do

Your call to action should encourage readers to engage with you further.

You’ll want to break the activity into smaller steps that make sense to your audience. You can lose prospects at each step of the process, so you want to make it very easy for them.

Make readers an offer they want. What will get prospects to commit now? Your offer will vary based on your business and where the prospect is in the sales process. You can consider offering white paper downloads, ebooks, ongoing emails, discount coupons and/or free consultations.

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5 Mobile Video Apps to Boost Online Engagement

social media toolsDo you want to use videos to market your business?

Are you wondering if there are simple mobile apps to make this possible?

In this article I’ll review five mobile video apps and share how they can boost your online engagement.

Why Mobile Video?

Vine, Twitter’s mobile video app, has business and marketing professionals considering the numerous ways video apps can be used to increase engagement.

Ekaterina Walter, social innovator at Intel and author of Think Like Zuck, recently predicted that “2013 will be the year of visual marketing”. Walter based this prediction, in part, on the fact that “…visuals and video done right are highly effective in cutting through the noise.”

This prediction has already proven true with a burst of new video apps and upgrades hitting the market. And some of these offer unique opportunities for savvy marketers.

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