Posted in Bite Sized Social Media

How To Begin Developing Your Social Media Action Plan

From my Bite Sized Social Media series


According to the “Social Media Fact Sheet” put out by the Pew Research Center Internet & Technology,

“…seven in ten Americans use social media to connect with one another, engage with news content, share information and entertain themselves.” 

(Though not directly related to social media and a business’ need to have a presence, they go on to note that “nearly nine in ten Americans today are online” for one reason or another.)

From a business standpoint, then, it seems like a no-brainer that you really need a well-defined, closely managed social media presence so that you can harness the power of  large numbers to target your ideal customers.  To solidify my point on this, let’s look at some of the research numbers the Pew Institute has collected:

  • Of those Americans who use social media, research shows that:
    • 86% of 18 – 29 year olds use social media
    • 80% of  30 – 49 year olds use social media
    • 64% of 50 – 64 year olds use social media
    • 34% of those aged 65+ use social media (a figure that continues to climb)
  • Of those Americans who access social media or the internet, in general, 77% own a smartphone and 51% own a tablet.

Now, we could continue to rehash what statistics show or we could cut right to the nitty gritty and talk about what these numbers mean to the big picture of social media marketing for your business.  So let’s do that, shall we?

First of all, a healthy respect for the numbers is absolutely necessary.  Without knowing who is doing what and from where, we can’t focus in on how to reach your ideal client.  So we always want and need to know the numbers!

But the numbers don’t really help if you can’t or don’t use them to your advantage.  So what do we actually DO with this new information?

We begin creating a framework for your social media action plan.

How, you ask?  Simple, I say!

For example, if we know that your business is targeting 18 – 29 year olds (which encompasses the most social media oriented and technologically savvy consumers) then we already know two important things about your social media needs:

  1. You need a solid social media presence
  2. You need responsive, mobile-friendly design

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 You have a basic framework for your social media marketing campaign!

 Obviously, there are a few more things to consider when planning your business’ social media presence.  But knowing who your target is and how they’re using the internet is definitely one of the first things to consider. Without that information, your social media campaign could end up being a complete waste of time.

Contact me

for a no-obligation chat about my Social Media and Content Management services!

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Posted in Blogging Tips, Business Motivation, Copywriting Tips, SEO, Writing in General

SEO 101: 3 Search Engine Optimization Tips For Getting Found in Tucson (And Anywhere Else!)

After my recent move, I was in the market for some new furniture.  Actually, I was in the market for a lot of new furniture:  a couch, chair, kitchen table, coffee tables, beds, lamps…everything.  And as much as I wish I could tell you that I’m absolutely made of money and can afford anything I want at any time, the truth is that I am your typical middle-class American living in your typically expensive city of Tucson, Arizona.  Budgeting is always a concern.  So I needed furniture that was quality, yet budget-friendly, and that could be delivered soon.  That ruled out the big name stores, for sure.

Anyway, in my attempt to plan my furniture shopping trips, I took to the internet to find stores here in Tucson that might sell what I was looking for at prices I wanted to pay.  Considering search engine optimization (SEO) is a huge part of what I do in my business, I felt pretty confident that I’d find what I was looking for with relative ease.  But guess what?  I was WRONG, WRONG, WRONG!

Ladies and gentlemen, if you are a business person and you have any sort of online presence…and especially if  you’re targeting local customers and clients…you MUST focus on local search engine optimization!  Let’s face it:  not every business can/is/wants to compete in the national or international marketplace.  And that’s perfectly fine.  But if you ARE competing for local customers then here are some things to keep in mind:

 

  • Use the name of your city, town, county, or state in your keywords:  In my situation (above), I needed quality, affordable furniture in the Tucson market.  So naturally I searched for keywords that included “Tucson” in the description.  Otherwise, my results were worthless for meeting my particular needs.

 

  • Include words that your customers would use:  Nobody wants to equate the word “cheap” with their business products or services.  But if your customers are looking to save money, there’s a very good chance they’ll use it in their search query.  So put away your pride and use the language of your people.  It’s the difference between being found online…and not.

 

  • Provide  useful, targeted content to read:  Maybe it’s just a pet peeve of mine, but I just don’t understand the concept of throwing a bunch of photos up on a site and calling it a day.  Is there anything worse than going through the hassle of actually finding a business’ website only to see that there’s absolutely no useful information on it to help you decide whether you even want to make the drive to visit??  I don’t think so…So write something.  Describe your product or service.  And don’t forget to use words that your customers would use!

 

Think like a consumer.  What would you, as someone looking to make a purchase, type into that little box on your computer screen?  Keep in mind that YOU know your business products and services better than your customers or clients, so keep it simple.  And if you’re targeting the local consumer, don’t forget to throw in a few mentions of where you are–city, county, state…whatever your idea of “local” may be.

 

And remember, if you need help…I might know someone who can get your website up to speed and getting found–in Tucson and beyond.  *ahem*  🙂

 

 

Posted in Blogging Tips, Copywriting Tips, Writing in General

Copywriting Concepts: Fun With Phonetics

sound
Photo Credit:  http://velodyne.com

Let’s talk about sounds, baby.

Let’s talk about you and me.

Let’s talk about all the good things and the bad things that may be.

Let’s talk about sounds…

[That’s how the song goes, right??  (Where are my early 90s people at?)]

Anyway, I have Salt-N-Pepa stuck in my head today and I have no idea why.

Actually, it’s probably because I came across a nifty website today (www.copywritingtipsguide.com) that had an article on phonetics and how to use it to write copy that speaks to the reader at a subconscious level.

Here’s a quick snippet from that article, “Sound and Fury–The Impact of Phonetics.”

How to Apply Phonetics as a Copywriting Trick

Before you start to brainstorm potential names, phrases or words you would like to use, think about what sounds best convey the idea you are trying to communicate.

If you’re working on a name for a modern, edgy brand, then you may want to brainstorm around hard, edgy sounds like “z”, “q”, “k”.

If you’re creating a feeling of serenity, use flowing sounds and consonant clusters with glides – “s”, “l”, “w”, “fl”, “sl”,  “sw”, etc.

To create more energy, use sharp vowels sound. For a softer feeling or more subtlety, use softer vowel sounds.

All of the above are merely examples – the possibilities are numerous. Where the sound falls within a word – beginning, middle or end – also plays a role in the feeling communicated. Compare an initial “z”, such as “zap” or “zam”, which feels very active and decisive, to a final “z”, which gives the feeling of sustained vibration, e.g. “buzz”, “fizz”, “wheeze”.

The article itself was fairly long and technical, but there’s some really thought provoking ideas in it.  And the point of the above snippet is absolutely spot on:  every word you choose when writing copy has an effect on every other word which has an effect on the person reading it.

Skillful word choice is an important element to successful copywriting.  Because even though copywriting, at its absolute core, is just a string of words that convey a message, it’s much, much more.

Copywriting is about creating an energy–a feeling–within the reader.  It’s about leading your reader to a desired action.

Anger, sadness, joy, excitement, curiosity…

Words have power.

But don’t overthink it.  Write conversationally, use words that give YOU the energy or feeling that you want your reader to have, and have some dang fun!  There are just too many great words out there to create boring copy…

Until laters, gators!