Your Favorite Criminals Coming to a Pinterest Feed Near You!!

When I’m on Pinterest, I’m usually prepared to see lamps made from sea shells and mason jars, the season’s latest make-up trend and some cool home decor.  However, there’s a new trend for Pinterest on the horizon…  Be prepared to see your favorite wanted criminals in your feed!

Social Media Wanted Poster

I was scrolling through my Twitter news feed the other day when I came across a post by my local police department…

Joliet Police (JolietPolice) on Twitter

The police department is using Pinterest to highlight their wanted criminals!!  Brilliant!

I did a little more digging and found an article in the Chicago Tribune that talks about the progressive move by the Joliet Police Department.  The Joliet Police Department regard their Pinterest Board for Wanted Criminals their own most wanted list.  They also have boards for missing persons and a board for people they’re trying to identify.  Check out all their boards here.  While you’re at it, check out our Pinterest Boards!!

Can you think of a new way to start using social media sites??  We’ve got our thinking caps on…

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Zombie is the New Vampire

With the popularity of The Walking Dead and the Zombie movie Warm Bodies and no decent vampire series on t.v., Zombie’s and a potential Zombie Apocolypse are all the rage!!  Social Media has taken notice and so has Socialty!!  Here’s a nifty info-graphic to feed your Zombie need.  Personally, I’m on the hunt for a vampire info-graphic, but I digress…

 

zombie-infographic

Who’s your favorite Zombie to avoid?  I do my best to avoid the Zombie Bride…  scariest of the all!!  brrr…gives me the shivers!!!

Rules to Live by, When You’re Making Up the Rules as You Go Along

Before the Jaws theme plays us off the stage and before I fall into a blissful slumber, we wanted to post a short blog about the “Rules of Social Media.”  Well, really an info graphic about it…  Because, well, you know at Socialty, we LOVE, and I mean LOVE, a good info graphic.

<<Pause to watch Adele sing>>

As I post this blog, I’ve been re-reading the info graphic and thinking about the rules listed on the graphic.  These are not just “rules,” these are solid business practices that are habit.  There are no second thoughts about any of the rules below.  Remember, they are not suggestions, they’re Rules to Live by, when we’re still making up the Rules as we go along.

Social Media is a constantly changing beast.  What’s your favorite rule blow?  If you could add a rule,what would it be?  We want to hear from you!!

Rules of Social Media Graphic

Hey, Small Businesses!! Are you sure about that??

Socialty loves info graphics!!  So much so, that we have a whole board dedicated to info graphics on Pinterest!!  I recently found this info graphic about social media that I found interesting.  Many small business owners know “just enough” when it comes to social media.  However, they may miss their target audience by focusing on the wrong social media outlet.

The following info graphic may point you to the correct site, but navigating the site and using it properly takes a skilled hand, like Socialty.  You all know what we do, right?  We handle all your online marketing and reputation management for your small business.  When you’re ready for the next level, contact us, we know what you need!

Follow us – Like Us – Plus Us – Stalk Us – We dare you!!!

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infographic-how-to-brand-yourself-an-expert-on-social-media

2013 and Socialty – Social Media Resolutions for a New Year

As Socialty looks back at 2012, let’s discuss some New Year’s resolutions for your small business social media on Google+, Pinterest, Twitter and more.

It’s a blogging tradition at New Year’s – looking back at what happened last year and using your first blog to try and make sense out of what’s to come. Honestly, it’s probably also a way for bloggers to be productive while recovering from all that New Year’s celebrating! So as Socialty looks back at 2012, let’s also talk about what to do in 2013!

Here are some suggestions for your small business New Year’s resolutions. While many so-called resolutions are ignored or forgotten within a few weeks, you shouldn’t turn your back on these! Start with a vow to make the most out of your social media marketing efforts. While catching up on the college football championship game and putting away those holiday decorations, take a minute today to review your social media accounts. Here are a few things you can change to make a world of difference this year …

If your business has a corporate website, you may qualify for a Verified Google+ Page. Check out http://bit.ly/QvXPhT and consider making a request to have Google verify your page. It isn’t very complicated, if your page meets the qualifications – the most important of which is probably, “Your Google+ page must already have a meaningful number of followers.” Rumor has it they mean hundreds of followers (not just 4 or 5, like your Uncle Marty’s crab wine distillery).

Pinterest rolled out official business pages back in November. Previously, individuals and corporations shared the same features on Pinterest. But now, your business can have a page with a suite of additional features. If your company has a Pinterest page, take a few minutes this New Year and change it to a business account (if you haven’t done so).

Also last Fall, the social media service Twitter introduced cover photos for profile pages. You can personalize your page with any header image you choose. From the “settings” menu icon, click “design” and then “change header” to do so. In the New Year, resolve to freshen up your Twitter page with a new cover photo every month – it makes the virtual “place” look a little nicer for your followers!

Another quick idea: review your business’ Facebook page, because it’s often easy to forget to keep the details updated when you’re “liking” and replying to status updates; check and update your privacy settings on Twitter, Google+ and Facebook.

Finally, let’s look forward to February. Twitter users beware! Your social media outbursts and shares will have to deal with a change to Twitter’s URL shortener – the short links will now be two spaces longer. This means a tweet’s content will have to be two characters shorter. But thankfully this also means that every month, followers will receive 2,000 less characters from Justin Bieber and Kim Kardashian!

So now you have a few social media resolutions for the New Year. Remember that at Socialty, it’s our pleasure to make your social media accounts thrive and prosper every year! Contact us today and find out how Socialty can help you and your business. We mean it when we say that in 2013, “Keep social and carry on!”

Tags: social media,Twitter,Facebook,Google+,social media positioning,Socialty Inc.,Pinterest,social media marketing

The Good, The OK and The Bad….

Which social media sites are right for you and your business?  We recognize that a single approach to marketing will never fit all situations because every business is different. The greatest benefit of letting Socialty fulfill your online needs is that we can use our knowledge, skill, experience and talent to determine if certain sites do or don’t match your needs!

Several months ago, the online site CMO.com published its annual Guide To the Social Landscape. Each year the guide, which is published as a downloadable infographic, lists the major players in online social media and grades them on strengths and weaknesses that are important to companies wanting to leverage social media for advertising and marketing.

The 2012 guide features 14 social media sites – from heavy hitters such as Facebook and Twitter to lesser knowns like Quora – and grades them in four categories: customer communication, brand exposure, traffic to your site, and search engine optimization. To explain further, CMO’s list looks at the potential for a company to build business utilizing a site in each of those four ways, and then uses the simple grading scale of “good,” “ok,” or “bad.”

First I thought we might take a look at the sites that were graded “good” across the board. To my surprise, none of the 14 social media sites achieved that spread! That’s probably a great sign that CMO’s list is trying for fairness. While leveraging these sites can be good for your business, the use of each social media site has limitations when trying to manage your online marketing activities.

Four sites did achieve the high grades of “good” in three areas and “ok” in one. These are Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and YouTube. All four scored high marks in regard to customer communication and brand exposure. Facebook and Twitter were stronger in building traffic to your site, while Google+ and YouTube were more useful for search engine optimization.

I don’t think the high marks for those well known and recognizable names are shocking to anyone. A mild surprise was SlideShare – a site that’s rated very highly by CMO’s Guide To the Social Landscape. In its first year on the guide, SlideShare (which has been around since 2006) is called “an awesome communication method for companies” and “a great place to promote your brand.” It’s rated “good” for customer communication and brand exposure and “ok” for building web traffic and for search engines. Subsequent to the release of this year’s guide, SlideShare announced on May 3 that it was being acquired by LinkedIn. Business Insider reported it to be a cash and stock deal worth $119 million.

So far, the social media sites we’ve been discussing have all had two category strengths (communication and branding) in common. StumbleUpon comes from the other direction. In fact, it’s rated “bad” for customer communication. The guide states “reaching existing customers can be random and costly.” For branding, it’s “ok” with the site’s targeting praised for its accuracy. Cost, however, is a drawback. According to the guide, StumbleUpon is “good” for both building traffic to your site and for search engines. StumbleUpon is among those sites that are a bit hard to explain to non-users. According to Wikipedia, “StumbleUpon uses collaborative filtering (an automated process combining human opinions with machine learning of personal preference) to create virtual communities of like-minded Web surfers.”

Similarly, Digg is a social media site where its users submit an outside webpage, and then vote the page up or down (called “digg”ing or “bury”ing, respectively). This is done through voting on digg.com or by websites adding “digg” buttons to their pages. CMO’s Guide To the Social Landscape ranked it generally “ok,” but “good” for brand exposure, which is attributed to the opportunity for promoting articles via Digg. The guide pointed to declining traffic across Digg as its primary weakness.

Also among the social media sites that received mixed ratings:

  • Flickr was “good” for SEO. The guide points out that “proper optimization can rank well in Google Images.” Unfortunately “even with tens of thousands of views” very low click-through to your site earned a “bad” rating.
  • LinkedIn was also “unlikely to drive any significant traffic to your site” (a “bad”) but received a “good” for brand exposure, especially if utilizing its company page features.
  • Pinterest was rated “good” for brand exposure and driving traffic to your site. The guide suggests “Contests” for the former and adding “Pin It” buttons to your pages for the latter. However, this social media service was rated “bad” for both communicating with customers and link values decreasing, stating “Pinterest recently n0-followed its links.”
  • Quora was “excellent for communication with high-level customers” and sharing your expertise (a “good”) but the drawbacks include most traffic staying put on the Quora site and no-follow links (a “bad” and an “ok”).
  • Reddit was “good” for driving traffic to your site but the guide mentioned not to “try too hard and get banned.” It was rated “bad” for increasing your brand exposure as most of the content is from major news organizations. Plus there’s a problem with image attribution which knocked Reddit down to an “ok” for SEO.

Only two social media sites received fairly negative ratings in this year’s Guide To the Social Landscape: Delicious (“Not enough brand recognition to make [it] worth your time”) and Instagram (which received a “good” for brand exposure but literally doesn’t have ways to communicate with customers, drive traffic to your site, or a way to incorporate SEO).

Visit the Guide To the Social Landscape at:

http://www.cmo.com/social-media/2012-cmos-guide-social-landscape

Keywords: social media, online traffic, brand exposure, websites, communication, ratings, socialty, search engines, marketing, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, YouTube, SlideShare, StumbleUpon, Digg, Flickr, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Quora, Reddit, Delicious, Instagram

Your Small Business Should Be On Pinterest!!

On November 14th, Pinterest announced a potentially game-changing addition to the three-year-old photo sharing social website. Businesses are now able to register accounts that have been designed with features for businesses, instead of for individual users. Companies that already have a Pinterest account can easily convert it into a new business account.

“Thousands of businesses have become part of our community, giving great ideas, content and inspiration to people on Pinterest,” wrote Product Manager Cat Lee on Pinterest’s official blog. “Whether it’s Anthropologie sharing awesome clothes, Whole Foods sharing tasty recipes, the Smithsonian sharing fascinating collections, or Amazon making products easy to pin, many of us have been inspired on Pinterest by businesses. We want to help more businesses provide great content on Pinterest and make it easy to pin from their websites.”

If you’re unfamiliar with Pinterest, try to imagine what would happen if you gave an old-fashioned bulletin board with “SHARE ALL YOUR GOOD IDEAS!” written on it to Martha Stewart, then locked her inside an empty room. According to one study by Experian, Pinterest had 104 million visits in March, ranking it behind only Facebook and Twitter as the third most popular social media site. Time magazine had called it one of the “50 Best Websites of 2011,” but one of its drawbacks was a lack of functionality for business owners. Sure, visiting Pinterest had become an integral part of the day for many Facebook users and iPhone owners, but for those who wanted to harness its social media popularity as a marketing and promotional tool, it was less than ideal.

Now a business can link to its official website so it’s listed on its Pinterest profile. For example, K-Swiss can now verify that its Pinterest page is company-operated and linked to http://www.kswiss.com/ . A company can also add buttons on its own web pages to make it easier for visitors to “pin” items on Pinterest or follow their feeds on Pinterest.

Pinterest users (or “pinners”) have been praising the addition of business accounts. The move has been received as both an example of listening to user requests and as a shrewd tactic to keep growth strong for the social media channel. Other social media sites have differentiated between people and institutional users. In 2007, Facebook introduced pages for corporations, schools and sports teams that others could “like.”

The benefits of creating this social media presence for your business are numerous. First of all, it’s neither expensive nor very difficult. Second, now you can register pretty much any unusual business name (such as Se7entyse7en – and yes, I just made that one up) instead of just a first and last name combination. Third, more businesses using Pinterest means more content created, repinned and shared. This increases the user base and that increases the number of people your small business can subsequently reach!

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Another cool feature was launched recently. On November 10th Pinterest co-founder and CEO Ben Silbermann e-mailed pinners worldwide to announce that a user can now create up to three “secret boards.” Items pinned to a secret board can be repinned to public boards, but the repin won’t link back to the secret board. Got that? As a simple example, a Pinterest user can now create a secret board to share pictures or designs in-house with co-workers, allowing easy communication with the rest of a project team. In many cases, this could make sharing parts of a project more simple than typing out e-mails and making sure all the right co-worker addresses are included.

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tags: Pinterest, social media, business websites, idea sharing, Cat Lee, Ben Silbermann

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