Friday, November 2, 2012
Monday, July 23, 2012
We love when we get testimonials, and we do get quite a bit. But when someone takes the time to actually sit and make an unsolicited video testimonial, what can you say? A huge thanks to Lance Lubin of St. Petersburg Real Estate for such a great video!
You can find out more about Lance and his real estate company on his Facebook Page.
Thanks again, Lance.
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
All images have been "modified" slightly to protect the guilty.
Its been a long time since I went off on a rant but I have the need to explode after seeing this last Facebook page of a company that claims to do Social Media Marketing...sorry but here I go........
So I land on the page and I immediately start to see good and bad things everywhere...things that a person who "knows" Facebook should know better NOT TO DO. Without giving away all the details, I am seeing posts that are ineffective/there is a way better way to make them. I am also reading their posts about what to do and not to do on Social Media and they are COMPLETELY IGNORING their own statements!!! This is the equivalent of calling your dog "Stay".
NOW, for the rest of you who are still here, this is the answer.
Monday, June 18, 2012
Thursday, May 31, 2012
Your website is becoming less important every year. What was once considered the holy grail of your online presence is diminishing in its importance year by year. I will go out on the proverbial limb and say that in five years, it will be an ancillary piece that will have only specific core functions. I would never say that it will disappear completely as there are still a few things you will always need it for. Let's dig into the reasons you will always need a great website first.
It is the only place on the web you actually own. Facebook, YouTube, Google+...all of these online platforms are owned by someone else. Their playground, their rules. Changes are made at their discretion. Your website on the other hand is an online entity that is branded specifically to your business. It is set up and functions exactly how you want it and remains so until you decide to change it.
I also believe e-commerce will remain on your website for many years to come. With privacy and security an issue on social platforms, people simply don't trust most purchases via a social shopping cart. We should know. Out of the many shopping carts we have installed on Facebook, not one has garnered many transactions. In fact, compared to a websites shopping cart, the social shopping cart produces less than 1% of what a website based shopping cart does.
Your website will also remain the place for facts and figures that would be a hindrance on a social platform. For example, while Ford motor company has a great social presence, nowhere on YouTube can I get the miles per gallon or other specifications about a car that I need. That would bog down user experience.
I also believe it will also remain important to have a professionally designed and optimized website. Since it is the only place branded for your business, hiring a professional who can give you the best face is well worth it. SEO in my opinion is going away, but most good web designers have stayed with the times and understand the newer algorithms to get you found for when people make that search. There will always be a segment of society that will never participate on a social network.
So why do I say websites are becoming ancillary? People spend so much time on social platforms in discovery mode. Think about the trends: The news finds us. Our friends recommend products and services which appear in our home feeds. We hear about a restaurant in almost real time when someone posts up on their social profile. Foursquare tells you where your friends are. Pictures are posted up everywhere and tagged for a location. Information has shifted from people actively searching to information finding us. Even television commercials have shifted to include their Facebook, Twitter or YouTube assets in place of websites.
While Facebook search currently lacks the robust algorithms to pinpoint a businesses page, the rumor has it that this is a product they will be diligently improving over the next year. When this happens, you will see an even more drastic shift in consumer search.
Word of mouth is always going to be the most powerful form of advertising and marketing. Social platforms are becoming the go to place for this online. It is word of mouth on steroids. Smart marketers monitor the social platforms for the keywords and phrases that relate to their business to see what people say. And while discussion boards are a great place to monitor, often times these are "planned" posts by consumers. On social platforms they are typically in conversational mode and post off the cuff in real time. Social platforms will become the place where a buying decision is made. What friend says about a product or service far outweighs what a company says about themselves. This happens continually, every second on the social platforms.
We look to the youth often times to seek out and discover fundamental shifts in the next generation's use of technology and communication which invariably leads to creating ways in which to market to this new generation of consumers. When I see my teens and their friends and the way the seek information out, it relies heavily on the seemingly minutia of simple posts to Facebook, or a late night tweet. What their friends say about a new pair of jeans on Facebook resonates throughout their tremendous number of friends. While the average Facebook user has 230 friends or so, when broken down demographically, the youth under 25 typically average closer to 750 friends. Whether you think these are actual friends or not, they still hold mass audiences at their disposal. What Alyssa or Allison say about your product can reach thousands viral. In minutes.
They are also relying less and less on searching Google for a website. I continually see Generation Y search Google, but they will use the word "Facebook" or "YouTube" as one of the keywords when searching. While they used to search "Gap jeans" they now search "Facebook Gap jeans".
Your website will always have a place. However, if you continue to rely on this for your online presence without adding the social networks to support it, be prepared to lose market share.
What are your thoughts? Post them up on our Facebook Wall now!
Thursday, April 26, 2012
- 44% of people check their social networking websites on their mobile device while watching a television program
- Facebook captures 14.6% of a user's total internet time
- Tumblr and Pinterest are the only second tier sites to capture a user's attention for more than 60 minutes each month.
- 38.5% of females check their social networks through their mobile phone
- 34.4% of males check their social networks through their mobile phone
Friday, April 6, 2012
I was in my English Class the other day and we were discussing social media. My professor told our class that we would be having a group paper for our next project. One group would be against Social Media and one group would be for Social Media. Obviously I chose to be for Social Media. I brought up the fact that Social Media is stimulating for our economy by creating more buzz for small and larger businesses. A lot of the students in my class had never really thought about that. I informed them that most Social Media Platforms are more business friendly today.
One student complained that he didn't like the new Timeline Profiles for Facebook. He said that he did not opt into anything that allowed his Facebook to be changed. I jumped in and told him that Facebook rolled out Timeline on March 30, 2012 for all personal and business pages. I told my class not to worry because Timeline is a cool new way to show everyone who you are and what you are all about because of the new Cover Photo feature.
My professor eventually said, "how do you know all this stuff?" I replied by mentioning that I work for a Social Media Marketing Company called Talking Finger. Then my group members got excited to have me on board. It felt good to teach the class something I was well educated in by working here. And as always I told them to LIKE us on Facebook and check out our post on Timeline Help and Support!
By the way, here is a graphic template and infographic to help you get the best out of your Timeline profile that I created.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
Friday, March 9, 2012
I personally think the new cover photos for Facebook Business Pages are a good idea. Graphically to me it is a billboard in a sense. Another good place to show some new photos of your business or maybe some events you are doing to keep people interested and updated with what is going on. Changing the cover photo is as easy as a simple photo upload, no coding needed. One must know the correct dimensions of the cover photo canvas in order for it to function properly and get your image across to anyone who checks out your page. I like the idea of the new profile pictures layered over a portion of the cover photo. It creates a sense of dimension which is important in design. It may even be a good idea to match the colors in your profile picture to the cover photo so that it blends well and they brand off each other. If created by the right designer a cover photo can say many things, what you do, who you are, where you are, and what your future plans may be. For example I split the design up for my cover photo for my personal Facebook into 3 sections. One section would be somewhere on the cover photo that I am a graphic designer, another with a picture of me playing drums so people would know that is one of my main interests and another section I have a picture of me in a suit looking professional. So I created a look that told people what I am most passionate about and that I can be a rocker and be professional as well and people see that as something fun. If you can show more than just a business face and that your a human who has some fun and personality and you will be on the same page with the viewers.
Here is good example of one of my favorite bands using the Facebook Cover Photo correctly advertising that they have a new song out:
Thursday, March 1, 2012
You drive me crazy, but I still love you.
That's the short succinct letter I would send to Mark Zuckerberg if I had to put it into less than ten words. The latest changes on Facebook are not a simple new button or sorting tab...its a major interface update called Timeline. In addition, Facebook has or is in the process of releasing a ton of new tools or advertising programs to help pages get more visibility and better targeting for their content and ads. I like Timeline a lot and the direction Facebook is going. It would seem, on the surface at least, they are trying to make their platform more valuable for Page owners, and a better experience for the users.
The tough part for many page owners was the loss of a Landing page/Welcome tab. This was a fantastic place to tell people: who you are, what you do, "benefits" of why they would like your page, and a call to action ("Like" us...). It also had a pre-qualification component built in to let people decide based on your page description whether they really want to hit that Like button or not. And if you know about Edgerank, qualified engaged Likes are far more valuable than the Like itself. As well, it is a branded component of your page to really separate you from the pack. Finally, without a Landing page, people are typically just dumped into conversations on the Wall, and may not really know what your Page is all about.
The Timeline Cover Photo, while perfect for branding has a lot of restrictions, so this cannot make up for a properly built Landing page. Here are the rules for your cover photo:
So are the Landing pages/Welcome tabs gone? Nope…big misconception. How they work is a bit different, however.
Let's dig in.
What you see above are our metrics for external referrers to our facebook page from 1/31 - 2/2712. This shows how people outside of facebook found our page. In the past, they would have landed on our Landing page/Welcome Tab. Now they can't...or can they?
Click the link below:
Talking Finger On Facebook
Did you land on our Wall? Or our Landing page? Unless someone came in and edited my blog to mess with my head, it was the latter.
Every Landing page and most apps have a specific URL associated with them. Having people from anywhere outside of Facebook land on your Landing page/Welcome tab is actually quite easy!
1. Go to the Landing page
2. Copy the complete URL address
3. Paste it wherever you are creating a link
I already went around to all of our platforms (Google+, YouTube, Twitter, website, even my LinkedIn and email signatures) to change the URL's to point to the landing page. It didn't take too long, and now everyone will still go where I want them to on our Page. Walla.
As well, any Facebook ads you run can be pointed to that Landing Page. Just simply copy and paste the URL into the destination field. So any ads you run, drive them there!
While that covers all external referrers, internal to Facebook it isn't going to help (if anyone figures out how to do it within Facebook, please let us know!) but what you CAN do is make your Landing page/Welcome tab the second tab in. Such as we have on ours:
Note the "Welcome to TF" tab. Now while people within Facebook may not land on this anymore by default, it is still available and still useful within the platform. As people get used to the new interface, I guarantee they will start looking for the apps and tabs in this area. If you title it well (Im actually iffy now on "Welcome to TF" and may change description to "Learn More About TF" or something clever- suggestions welcome!) people will be curious.
While you may lose a small portion of people within Facebook actually landing on your Landing page, I hope we have shown you some ways in which these will still be valuable assets for your marketing. So if you have one, don't fret! Just change what you are doing. If you are in the process of making one, go for it!
One final note, once someone hits the "Like" button, the page will not flip as before to the Wall. So in your description, or your call to action, you may want to instruct them a bit. " 'Like' us, then click here to go to our Wall".
We are currently redoing our landing page to accommodate the new call to action, but we really wanted to get this info out to you asap! So check back in a day or two to see the updated, full size and rocking landing page we are working on.
And if you send a letter to Zuckerberg, tell him Talking Finger says hello.