Category Archives: Twitter

Fun Fact Fridays: Three Tips to Get More Twitter Followers

Like most folks who are new to new Twitter ask the common question : How do I get more followers?

While this question seems easy, getting more followers is a daunting task for folks who are unfamiliar with Twitter and its quirks. I decided to write this quick post after helping one of my team members the other day outline some keys to success.

1) Consider Your Purpose

This should be the first step in any social media experiment. In my previous role of leading my organization’s social media efforts, I followed a simple formula for success: P.O.S.T (People, Objective, Strategy, and Technology). Too many folks focus on the “T” and not enough on “O” or “S.” Sound familiar? This is one of the central themes in Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff’s book, Groundswell

If you join Twitter, what are you plans? What will you share with others? Why should other people care? By defining what you want to get out of participating in social media, you will be successful. This is not a shocking secret, however, many people fail to outline their goals. Social media is not about throwing things on the wall to see if it will stick, it is about having a plan and what you expect to get out of it. Plan and simple.

2) Careful Craft Your Bio

One of the first things I look for when following someone is the person’s profile. Why? I want to know what can I expect from following them. Your bio should tell a little about you. Maybe you like cooking or dancing cats.If you don’t have a profile set up with what your interest are, what you plan to share, you are making it harder for people to want to follow you.

Secondly, are your putting hashtags in your profile? The reason for the hashtag is so anyone who is interested in let’s say #PR, can perform a search and potentially find you. Hashtags are an easy way to let folks find your profile and want information you will share with them.

Bonus: please, please use a photo of yourself. No eggheads. People want to see who behind all those awesome nuggets and great information.

3)  Are you posting your handle on other social networks?

In every industry there are several groups that you can join to promote your personal brand. For example, in higher education, I follow and participate in several chats to learn about the trends in the industry. Here is one example of a directory or chat to follow:

Example of industry group

EDUtweetups is a great example of an industry group that hosts tweet chats to participate in.

Looking for your groups is fairly simple by just typing into Google. 

Additional you should be promoting your handle on LinkedIn, Google +,etc.  Don’t assume the people who are connected with you on LinkedIn are the same folks who follow you on Twitter. The whole premise behind Twitter is to share, in real time, your ideas, thoughts, and comments about current events, trends in your industry, and perhaps your opinion or position on hot topics. Sending tweets is not like status updates.

Bonus: You got this far so here’s an additional tip. Make sure your are sharing information multiple times in a day. Twitter is not like Facebook or LinkedIn where your status stays in someone feed. Your Twitter followers have their feeds constantly updating so make sure you are spreading out your tweets to maximize your exposure.

Seven #SocialMedia Tips in Less than Eight Clicks

Happy Tuesday. Thinking about sharing practical advice in social media, I decided to do a top list of articles from my past posting. One of the reasons I decided to start writing this blog was to share my past experiences and provide solid advice to folks looking for ways to use social media. I don’t believe it is difficult, I think it’s hard to change the norm and get people to try new things. I want to share advice without the hype and ra ra. We all know we should be doing more with social, but often don’t know how.

Seven Tips in Eight ClicksSo, here is my attempt to provide solid advice for the folks who are looking for real tactics. Practical tips for the pragmatic professional.

Happy reading.

Holy Grail of Gaining More Followers on Twitter

Part 1: 4 Things I Learned during My First Year of Implementing a Global Social Media Strategy

Part 2: Everyone else is an expert

Part 3: You Need an Executive Champion

Part 4:  Social Media Needs to Involve Others, but There’s a Catch

When Tactics, Not Strategy Drives Your Social Media

Who is Driving Your Social Media Bus

The “Me” Show In Social Media Never Works Out

I was reminded how “me” doesn’t work in social media again after reading an article about what really contributes to increases in Twitter followers. Folks who increase their followership generally do three things:

  • Have a positive tone. Being nice helps on social media.
  • Sharing content that is relevant, informative, and interesting. It’s not about you.
  • Engaged and Interactive with other followers. Sharing is caring.

If you think about this in your face-to-face life, none of the above is surprising. If you always talk about yourself, what you are doing, how amazing you are, no one will stick around long. Think about networking events, Chatty Kathy is going on and on about her amazing abilities and all I keep thinking is, “ Where’s the escape route?”

Don’t be a ‘meinformer.’ 

Looking for the right mix of content in your social media?

Looking for the right mix of content in your social media?

I mentioned in a past Twitter post, The Holy Grail: Getting More Twitter Followers, that the key is knowing why you’re on Twitter and making sure you know what you want to share, hello P.O.S.T.

Don’t forget the social media is about social connections, not about broadcasting your news. There is a right and wrong way to share your news.

At the end of the day, there is no difference between social norms in person or online. It pays to be a good listener, be kind, and be informative.

What the Super Bowl Blackout Brought to Light

Update: BuzzFeed article highlights the pragmatic approach of the Oreo’s brand team and their social agency, 360i. Another trend I noticed in the article and worth mentioning is the concept of the “social command center.”

If you were watching the Twitterverse during the game, you noticed that there was a few clever ads that pocked fun at last night’s Super Bowl blackout.

All over the media outlets was the success of the Oreo’s social media ad of “You can Still Dunk them in the Dark.” While the campaign is funny and on point, I think it highlights an even bigger win: the social media team reacted, in real time, to an opportunity. I don’t know if their team floated the idea to their executive chain, but I do know that in a matter of minutes they were able to use the opportunity to their advantage. This should be a lesson to executives on how to use social media:

1)   Give your team space to make choices right or wrong. Last night proved that with quick action, the team was able to react and be on point. They knew their limits and took a risk that paid off handsomely.

2)   No executive approval needed. At least from what the audience can see. There was no time to debate, or check with legal. Oreo trusted their team to make the right call and gave the creative license.

3)   Real time = Real Engagement. That is what social media is all about. The team took advantage of this and the results were amazing. I don’t think the numbers are out yet on the campaign, but I can tell you if you aren’t thinking about Oreos this morning, you sure are hearing a whole lot about them now! From what I saw last night, everyone loved the creative, funny ad that made fun of a very unexpected event.

Kudos to the team for their courage because let’s be honest it was a risk. It could have gone over like a lead balloon, but because the team was tapped into the audience it was a huge success. It was timely and relevant. Two huge factors that you must know in order to master the Twitter game.

Who is Driving Your Social Media Bus?

Who is Driving Your Social Media Bus?

I don’t know about you, but in the many articles I read, I don’t see anything about who is managing the social media channels. I see plenty of articles on how to to use social media, but nothing on advice on how best to manage. So, here is my advice. Don’t forget about the human element to social media. I think there is a huge error in undervaluing the human element to social media.

Any successful program needs a point person. As the communication point person at my company, I led our social media efforts during the foundation-building stage. I partnered with different groups cross-divisionally to find interesting industry nuggets in addition to sharing our “corporate news.” Key stakeholders included policy, sales, marketing, and senior leaders. However, your most important asset will be employees (your front-line brand ambassadors and have their ear to the ground to what is relevant).  In other words, what people do you plan to use in order to implement your social media attack plan.

Danger, Danger Will Robinson. Do not confuse people who want to review social media as collaborators. You need folks who are willing and able to roll up their sleeves and get involved.

This is not a one-person show if you plan to be around for the next act. It must be a collaborative effort, but collaborative efforts can be challenging if everyone is not on the same page.

Don’t forget it about the human element. Don’t forget the “social.”

Who Should Monitor Your Social Media?

Your first response might be marketing or customer support. But I think the question really needs to focus on what is your goal with social media. If you goal is brand management then marketing might make sense. If you goal is to decrease customer support then your support team, maybe. What if it was a collective effort versus a silo approach? Where each group had folks not dedicated, but individuals interested in connect with the community and sharing their knowledge.

Now that would be interesting. Could that actually occur in an organization or would it driven by one department fighting for control?

When Tactics, Not Strategy Drives Your Social Media

This topic is top of mind after a discussion I had the other day with colleagues. Many times in organizations internal stakeholders discuss tactics rather than strategies. Who is going to post this to Facebook? We should tweet this out from the corporate versus the product handle. This is a waste of energy for one simple reason: without a comprehensive, clear objective your tactics will never substitute a strategy.

I run into this often in my current role. Many folks want to change the conversation from “what’s the ultimate goal of using social media” to “I think we should be on Pinterest?” Bad move. Without a clear goal on why you want to use social media, whether it is to increase brand awareness, client engagement, or decrease customer support inquiries you will never get beyond tactical conversation that yield boo. Yeah, I said boo. This is a circular conversation that is like a rocking chair. Everyone feels great that they are “accomplishing a task,” but it is going nowhere.

How can you change the tide to be more productive?

1)   Figure out whether your social efforts will be driven by product or brand. Both have plusses and minuses. Personally, I think brand should be running the social media show in order to ensure one voice, one message. Doesn’t mean brand is the only stakeholder, but whomever in your group/ organizations manages the company’s message should be the ringleader. Then involve stakeholders throughout the organization: sales, services, HR, your senior leaders, and most importantly employees. In other words, what people do you plan to use in order to implement your social media attack plan.

2)   Write down your objectives. Please. How can you be “successfully” running or maintain social media without planning out what you plan to achieve? Without a plan you are just “posting” or “tweeting” for the sake of doing it. Pointless and will not yield anything other than you feel good about yourself. Hi-five for you.

3)   Once you have objectives, wait for the dirty word, what “Strategy” will you implement. By definition the word strategy (I used Wikipedia), is plan of action designed to achieve a specific goal. Strategy is all about gaining (or being prepared to gain) a position of advantage over adversaries or best exploiting emerging possibilities. There is it is kids, a plan. Just because you are posting to Facebook or using Twitter doesn’t mean you have a social media strategy. Don’t embarrass yourself by thinking otherwise.

4)   After the groundwork is built, then you figure out where your audience is. Are they on Twitter? Facebook? Pinterest. If so then how many? Is it worth your effort to reach this audience?

5)   Now that you did this amazing work, how will you measure it? For me, I measured our work based on metrics tied to awareness (transactional data, i.e. followership), engagement (social shares, website traffic, time on site) and alignment (with corporate and department goals). I had monthly reports on this and then completed six-month report to our senior folks.

Overall, changing from tactic is more than words. It’s about establishing your business as a social business, not just a social brand. It’s about the action, but about the thought and reason why you are participating in social media. In order to build a social business there must be buy-in at both the employee and senior leader.   More to come on building a social business, not just brand.