Top 5 Social Media Recomendations for your business.

So what were Social Bakers recommendations?

  1. Monitor and measure your activity DAILY. This will give you real time analytics.
  2. Drive the industry and invest in innovations. i.e redbull space jump.
  3. Devote resources with social media customer service
  4. Post only local and relevant content in a timly manner.
  5. Make sure you get into the newsfeed. Look into when your competitors post, just schedule before them, steal their thunder!

Top 5 social media recommendations image by Think Big Online

 


7 Great Ways your Business Could Benefit from Twitter Vine

Twitter Vine as Business Marketing Solution?

 

7 great ways to benefit from twitter vines image by Think Big OnlineEver heard of Twitter Vine and wondering how it could actually benefit your business? If you’re always on the lookout for the latest in great social media marketing and video marketing solutions, you’ve most probably had! You can think of Vine Twitter as a mobile application that enables its users to take extremely short and looping 6 second videos that they can share with their Twitter and Facebook contacts. It’s similar to Instagram except that you are dealing with videos and not pictures.

 

 

 

Let’s go ahead and check out 7 great and effective uses of Twitter Vine for your business

 

1. Social media engagement and branding

Vine can act as an excellent supplement to your video marketing campaign and boost engagement in social networks. You can do this simply asking prospects what they think about your products or services and the things that they are looking forward to. For instance, if your business is all about selling books you can ask prospects to share which books are their favorites and with Twitter Vine, you can give them visual suggestions on books that they may like and get them to purchase those books from you.

What’s more is that you can use Vine to get your social media fans and followers to advertise your products or services for you. Mobile devices are extremely popular now days and all you have to do is ask them to create a short video of your services in action or how much they are enjoying a certain product of yours. You can then acknowledge your fans and attach the video to your business hash tag on Twitter.

2. Exhibit your portfolio and get your fans and followers excited about a new product or service

Why settle having your business portfolio on your website when you have it on video and share it on Vine Twitter? It is how even small-scale businesses can benefit from Vine. Show off your product packaging and samples to gain some momentum for your business.

As a video marketing strategy, Vine can provide much needed visual inspiration for businesses to create excitement among social media fans and followers whenever they have an upcoming product on the Pipeline. Businesses can use Vine to reveal new products or show case teasers that their target audience can all look forward to.

3. Share a trivia and relevant information or celebrate holidays

Keep in mind – not everything has to be about business! It will only make your business appear uninteresting. You can share trivia and news relevant to your business that your prospects may be interested in. It’s always a good way of generating valuable social media engagement!

Also you might want to make sure your business branding keeps up with all the significant holidays throughout the year and Vine can certainly help you easily do just that by sharing short holiday-themed 6 second promotional videos. Fans and followers enthusiastic about getting into the holiday spirit are bound to appreciate it and favor your business over others that are unmindful of it.

4. Give fans and followers the “Inside Look”

Twitter Vine give businesses ample opportunity to leverage the human element in their video marketing and social media marketing campaign. Once can’t think of a better way of doing that other than giving people the inside look at your office or store with a short video showing what an amazing place it is and how happy your customers and employees are during their downtimes.

5. Educate and impress prospects

Vine is a good way to educate your fans and followers with fascinating and relevant facts about your business. For example, if your business deals in pet trade you can exhibit some of the animals you have for sale along with some interesting information about them on a short vine Video

6. Share your story

You can use Vine for a quick and innovative solution in summing up your business from day one until the present! It’s a great way to share your history with fans and followers throughout the years and inspire consumer confidence! One great idea is to feature older versions of your products up to the most current ones.

7. Contest, promotions and presentations

It can be difficult for businesses to generate excitement among fans and followers during a certain promotion or contest. In many cases, these people simply don’t know your product or service well enough to want or need it. That can all change with Twitter Vine as it’s a great way to quickly show off your products and invite people to participate in contests to win prizes like exclusive content and product samples.

Vine can also be a great boost to your presentations such as webinars and podcasts! All there is to do is take a short video relevant to your presentations.

Wondering how you can get started on Twitter Vine?

It’s easy and can be done in 5 simple steps:

  • Get the Vine mobile application from iTunes for your supported mobile device
  • Set up your own account on Vine with your e-mail address or existing account on Twitter
  • Seek out users that you can follow by accessing your profile page and selecting the “person” icon located on the top right section of the page. You can also connect Vine to your Facebook account and share it with friends although this option is restricted to personal accounts only.
  • Simply select the camera button to begin a video recording. Just press the screen with your finger and hold it until you’ve finished recording your video
  • After you are done recording, press continue to share your video with fans and followers!

 

There you have it – some great ways your business can greatly benefit from Vine. In what other ways can Twitter Vine help you with your business?


2013 Social Media Predictions Part 2

Part 2 of our 2013 social media predictions include the top social platform in 2012 and our picks for 2013 and a hot tip to maximise your results. These all came from our 2012 online marketing insights and 2013 predictions report.

See part 1 one of social media predictions here.


And The Winner Is...

Thank you to all who participated in our survey!

32 GB Ipad Mini prize image by Think Big Online

We have collected the data from business owners, managers and heads of marketing and have come across some amazing statistics.

In an industry that is constantly changing and updating its great to know the latest news and to gain an insight to what other businesses are doing with their Online Marketing. This is what we are going to offer you in our 2013 Online Marketing report!

Now for the part everyone has been waiting for (drumroll please)

The winner of the 32gb iPad mini is……….

  • Martin Whelan!!

 

Congratulations also  to our surprise second  draw winners who will receive a bottle of TBO wine! 

  • Kathryn Crofts
  • Chris Moses
  • Mark Costello
  • Melinda Wood
  • Jesse Stephens

 

We are very excited to share the report with all of you, it is full of data that may change the way you plan to structure your Online Marketing for 2013! 

Jump over and see the full results Here.


2012 Online Marketing Insights & 2013 Predictions

To better understand where online marketing is currently at and where it is going in 2013 we conducted a survey across all the main areas of online marketing in Australia and have decoded the findings into a compact report.

Some key findings included in this report:

  • Where The Easy Money Is
  • Businesses Main Goals For Online Marketing 
  • Which Social Media Works Best 
  • How To Get A Great ROI     
  • Biggest Problems With Online Marketing
  • How To Measure Results                          
  • What Makes The Biggest Impact          
  • What’s Happening in 2013
  • Biggest Frustrations
  • Most Satisfying Results

 

This survey of Australian businesses was conducted during the end of November to the first week in December 2012 in an effort to understand how businesses are using the online marketing.

The survey is made up of small and large businesses that sell B2B (business to business) and B2C (Business to consumer).  It involved hundreds of businesses from many different sectors of various sizes, driven from a range of sources including, email marketing, social media, search engines and phone contact.

Grab Your Copy Below Now

We believe in fair exchange and so in exchange for the dozens of hours our team has put into delivering this report to you, all we ask is that you share it to get instant access to the report.

Once you click share below the page will open so you have instant access to the report.

[pwal id="103098761" description="2013 Online Marketing Predictions"][wpdm_file id=2] [/pwal]

 

 


If I’ve Said It Once I’ve Said It A Million Times…

Google image by Think Big OnlineOver the last few weeks I've been amazed by all the announcements coming out by Google and the industry commentary.  Amazed not because Google’s making changes, rather because it’s the same thing I've been saying for years.

You see, often I talk to companies and they tell me about how other SEO professionals have told them they need high PR back links and keyword loaded pages to rank.  When I hear this I immediately cringe and grow angry with the people they’ve been talking to.

Sure these kind of tactics will work for a little while as you game the system but in the long term the site will get slapped and rankings will drop.  Then the website owner will come and ask us why they got penalized, the answer is because they were stupid.

I saw this with the deepest respect, but it’s foolish to think that you can beat Google.  Let me explain, in Australia it’s illegal to drive with an Alcohol Blood Limit above 0.05 so if you have more than 2 beers you need to take a taxi home.

Now I know some people who think they are invincible so they drink more then they should and then drive home.  Maybe the first time they do this they don’t get caught, or even the second time they slip by unnoticed, but the more they do it the more likely they are to get caught.

It’s ignorant to believe that you can break the law and get away with it forever, at some point you’re going to get caught, fined or even have your license suspended.  This same thing applies to Google, while for some time you may get away with it ultimately you are going to get caught.

When you get caught you’re not going to like the consequences so you need to be smart about your SEO.  Make sure you are doing the right things, and not trying to game the system.

Seriously, do you think that you’re smarter than the whole engineering team at Google?  If you do then you need a reality check.

If you want good rankings in Google consistently then present a quality website with a quality user experience.  It’s the same thing I’ve been doing since I started online marketing and it’s never failed to work.

Put out good content regularly and promote the content to relevant markets, it’s that simple.


Video Marketing Essentials

Starting out with video marketing

Looking to start out with video marketing as a means of promoting your company/business and the products or services that you offer?

Well videos can certainly come a long way as an internet marketing solution but the process itself can be quite daunting especially for those who don’t have the slightest clue about what’s important and where to start.

Read on for some great tips that aim to cover everything from producing your marketing videos to optimizing and promoting it online.

First off, you need to ask yourself whether you are willing to produce such videos yourself for your business or outsource the task entirely. The rest of this post will of course assume that you’ve decided to take on the task yourself which brings us to the next step – deciding what type of videos to make in web marketing. Options include Q&A formats and product demonstrations just to mention a few.

Starting out with Q&A comes highly recommended and should be fairly easy to produce than others. Customers and prospects had probably sent you a couple of questions about your products or services. Marketing with videos through the Q&A format presents an engaging and effective way to address such questions and raise brand awareness.

The video marketing process

Now in order to produce videos for web marketing, you will of course need the necessary equipment to do so. If you’re only starting out in video marketing, it would be best to stick with the basics and get a grasp on the fundamentals of producing quality videos which often only comes with experience working with such equipment. You can then invest on additional features and set up should you find the need for them

Here are a couple of things that you will need for basic setup in producing videos for your internet marketing strategy:

  • You will of course need a good camera – you don’t really need to get the most expensive ones as they often come with features that you don’t really need. A simple flip camera will often suffice although you may want to opt for an HD camera for the best quality. It would be best to get the ones that have automatic smart video capturing functions as it eliminates all the guesswork involved in its operation.
  • Microphones – audio clarity is just as important as video quality and oftentimes camera integrated cameras won’t suffice. It would be best to get a boom mic or any external microphone that can be placed near the subject without causing unwanted distractions.
  • Lights – you’ll need a lot more than simple indoor lights if you want to produce good quality videos. Umbrellas and a simple light box setup should suffice and eliminate shadows for well balanced and great looking results.
  • A good choice of background – when marketing with videos, you will want something plain and professional perhaps anything of dark color with your business logo on it. Backgrounds that are too colorful or diverts focus away from the subject won’t do you any good.

Preparations

Have the questions carefully picked out and prepared along with your best answers for it. These questions should be right up your ally since it’s all about your business after all. Q&A marketing videos are often non-scripted but take the time to write down and practice your answers for the best results and smooth flow of information. Remember that with enough practice, anything can be done better!

Shooting your marketing videos

Now for most people, being in front of a camera can be quite an uncomfortable experience. Here are a couple of tips that should help you take on the task of being the subject of your marketing videos:

First and most importantly, just be yourself. Speak and behave as you normally would while enunciating each word as clearly as possible

Smile and relax – how can you expect to get your viewers to trust you and be interested with what you have to say when your video wreaks of nervousness and low self-confidence? Just relax and try to enjoy it. After all, you’ve made your preparations and practiced well so what’s left is to pull everything off and make it look easy which will certainly help you gain the confidence and interest of viewers.

Look straight to the camera as if you are actually conversing with it

Post-production and optimization

Okay so you already have your raw web marketing videos taken, so what now? Well the next step is the post-production phase which includes among other things, creating video intros and outros. You can’t expect to just put up the raw video online for you prospects to see do you?

Now there are tons of video production programs that you can use for your marketing videos. These programs can be as cheap or expensive as you need them to be. You can use the basic video editing software often comes preloaded on Mac and Windows computers (iMovie and Movie Maker) or go for premium ones that produce high quality and professional looking results.

Last but certainly not least is optimization! Regardless how amazing your video marketing content is, it’s not going to amount to anything if you can’t get your targeted prospects to actually see it. We recommend producing a transcript for your marketing videos and publishing it along with the video of course.

That way, viewers can also check on the transcripts as they watch your video should they have trouble hearing or understanding whatever point you are making on your video.

Don’t forget the title, category and description tags as well! The idea is to provide everything the search engines need to seek out, index and rank your video. Optimize everything you can with relevant and target keywords as you would any web content.

If you have your video marketing efforts hosted towards video sharing platforms such as Youtube, it pays to have your video optimized there as well by again setting appropriate keyword and description tags as well as selecting the right category for your videos.

So there it is! Basic guide and tips to video marketing from the ground up! Think that we left anything out?


Dealing With Anchor Text Over Optimisation

What is anchor text over optimization?

For many people in the internet marketing business, this is probably the first time you’ve actually heard about. In the post Panda and Penguin world of SEO though, it’s a problem that needs to be rectified and rectified quickly!

Now to get a good grasp on this particular problem, we need to better understand what anchor text is. Anchor text is basically words that you’ll often find highlighted and underscored within a particular web content that when clicked, takes users to a certain web page. Search engines use it to determine what they are likely to see as they follow and crawl over the set web page and the kind of content it offers.

Let’s say you’ve published a blog that talks about the significance of SEO or search engine optimisation. You got “SEO” highlighted and when clicked, it takes you to a business website offering professional SEO services – that is your anchor text.

So what is anchor text over optimisation then? Now it’s an emerging problem found to have been brought about by recent updates in search engine algorithms particularly the infamous Penguin update. The new algorithm essentially zeroes in on the presence of unusually large numbers of anchor text linking to a certain website – exact anchor text to be precise.

Let’s say your targeted anchor text for your link building strategy is “web design” and the term web design isn’t actually found on the domain name, brand or content on the web page that it points to then that’s anchor text over optimisation right there!

It's much more so if you have hundreds of such links with the same "anchor text" pointing to the same page. Google has a birds eye view of all the websites on the internet and knows what is natural and what isn't and if they find that the links pointing to your site look too unnatural then it can lead to harsh penalties and your rankings will drop.

Anchor text over optimisation – how do you fix it?

Now the question remains; how do you check on and rectify such a problem?

Well your first step is to have a through back link building analysis done. Start by checking on a couple of your closets competitors that are ahead of you in search engine rankings. What SEO keywords are they using in their online marketing strategy and how does their anchor text profile appear in comparison to yours? Think that you can do a better job or at least match their internet marketing strategies up to par?

The ultimate goal here is to of course completely get rid of any troublesome backlinks on your website that may be read by current search engine algorithms as an offense towards anchor text over optimisation.  Work towards achieving an even mix of anchor text that points to your website. Out in the wild (of the internet) not every website is linked back using the exact keywords you want to rank for. 

They linked using all types of things like; website, click here, visit site, along with a rang of long words (possibly the name of the page or blog post). 

You also need to check on and remove any spam backlinks. 

Once you’ve got all those problematic links out of the way, you can then start creating more natural links back to your website (we’ll get to that soon).

Generating a link profile that appears natural with excellent use of mixed anchor text and its seamless integration in to your web content is certainly important. Ensure that your keywords are in that content which will certainly help boost the effectiveness of your SEO and link building strategies.

Last but not least is that you need to pay attention towards creating high quality and interesting content. Remember that content is king and it will certainly go a long way towards attracting high quality and natural links as you seek to develop more authority towards your business website.


Avoid Getting Banned in Social Media Marketing

Are you breaking any rules in social media marketing without even knowing it?

As you may already know, there are certain rules that businesses all need to adhere to in social media marketing. No it’s not the type that stops users from sharing pictures of what they had for dinner or anything like that.

Rather these are rules that are aimed at improving one’s experience with a certain social media community and stop practices like spamming, unethical marketing strategies and poor quality content.

Surprisingly, a lot of people in the social marketing business are breaking many of these rules without even knowing it.

It’s certainly important for businesses to know for certain that they are not breaking any of these rules so as not to be banned by whatever social media networks they are working with.

We are truly saddened by stories of marketers hard at work to earn their place in social networks suddenly get their business accounts banned without even knowing why.

What not to do in social media marketing

In order to help marketers keep up with the rules and regulations set by some of the most dominant social media networks online, we’ll cover some policies in social marketing that everyone should be well aware of. You’ll find that some networks enforce policies than that of others. If you somehow find that you are breaking any of them, least you can put the lid on it before the issue escalates any further. Let’s jump right to it then!

 

FACEBOOK

As the most dominant social media network online, businesses certainly have a lot to lose if they somehow get their business account banned on Facebook. Well it certainly can happen if they end up committing these violations in Facebook marketing

  • Inappropriate business page names – business names must be unique with proper grammar and capitalization.
  • Making and making use of fake accounts
  • Publishing any copyrighted material and attempting to pass it off as your own
  • Inappropriate collection of user data – always let your users know what information your business is collecting and seek their proper consent. Never misrepresent Facebook as the one gathering the information in any way.
  • Facebook marketing promotions or contests run outside that of the Facebook app. You can’t also solicit any action other than “Likes”, “Check In” and app connection as a basis or requirement for participation. Also winner notifications can only be done outside of Facebook.  As you can see, running a contest or any other promotional activity on Facebook isn’t as easy as you might think.
  • No CTA’s (Call to action) on cover photos which includes among other things, “Like” and “Share” requests and promotional or discount invitations.

 

You can check out the Facebook Page Guidelines for the complete rule book on business pages and Facebook marketing

TWITTER

You can check out the complete Twitter marketing policies directly on their website which they fondly call - The Twitter Rules. Let’s briefly go over a couple of them which specifically concerns social media marketing professionals.

  • Stealing trademark usernames and logos – this includes creating usernames that resemble that of your competitors and using it to discredit them. Trademarked usernames are automatically retrieved by Twitter on behalf of its owner.
  • Impersonation – claiming to be somebody you’re not in order to misdirect others. Besides, nobody should have to stoop so low.
  • Long periods of inactivity and selling of usernames – registering a username and not using it for more than 6 months
  • Repeated and duplicate content – tweeting the same post over and over again is never going to get you anywhere in Twitter marketing well except for a one-way trip down suspension alley that is. This includes links and duplicate content targeted towards certain users.
  • Creating and using your own Twitter Badge – Twitter rewards verified accounts and promoted products with a special badge that recognizes them as reputable members of the social marketing community. Using false badges and using it in any way is a sure way to get your Twitter marketing campaign suspended.
  • Using bots to follow  and stop following a large number of users or simply behaving like one
  • Using unethical or underhanded tactics to secure a large number of followers on Twitter
  • Topic hijacking – don’t butt in on trending topics posting unrelated  promotional content about yourself or your business or else the cute little bird might just zero in on your account and take it far away where it’ll no longer bother anybody
  • Excessive use of links as sole content – there’s just no context to it so don’t be surprised if Twitter finds you account as outright annoying.
  • Community reports – It pays to be nice. If a lot of people are reporting a lot of complaints about you and blocked your account off their network. Twitter might just follow through with a permanent suspension of your account.

 

LINKEDIN

Compared to other social media networks, LinkedIn’s policies in social marketing is much less stringent. You can check out the LinkedIn User Agreement  straight from their website or briefly go through the following points outlined below which every social media marketer should know about so as not to get their business account banned:

 

  • Establishing connections with random people – you have to know the people you are trying to connect with in the LinkedIn social network. Otherwise, don’t be surprised if the network kicks you out.
  • Publishing copyrighted content anywhere on the network – this includes your company page, LinkedIn Answers and groups. Granted violating anybody’s intellectual property rights won’t get your account banned the first time but LinkedIn can shut down your group or company page which can be just as devastating for your social media marketing campaign.
  • Utilizing LinkedIn messages as a bulk e-mailing service is seen as a grave misuse of the LinkedIn social network
  • Selling your LinkedIn account or monetizing it any way
  • Creating fake accounts in an attempt to impersonate and discredit competitors – that’s a low blow
  • The use of bots to establish connections, members or flowers and grow one’s network artificially is strictly forbidden.

 

These are but a few of the social media marketing practices that can get you banned in 3 of the most dominant social media networks online. What do you think? Had you broken any of those rules or policies without even knowing it?


Internet Marketing – it’s a Date

Internet Marketing is just like Dating

 

Now this may sound strange but one of the best practical analogies that can be said about Internet marketing is that it’s practically just like dating. Now comparing something that seems to be as complicated as online marketing to dating may seem too far off but read on and we’ll tell you how exactly this is so.

 

 

The dating perspective on internet marketing

Well imagine that you’ve just met someone you really like and that you are on your first date. You don’t ask that someone right away to be your girlfriend/boyfriend or worse - ask them to marry you right? You are likely to freak that somebody out and have them running for the hills and out of your life. You have to spend some time together and actually get to know one another as well as meet each other’s family and friends.

If you like what you see, you can then wrap a ring around it so to speak.

In web marketing though, we see a lot of people and internet marketing services putting up call to actions like “Contact us” and “Buy Now” on most of their webpages and that’s practically just like asking someone you’ve only just meet in the dating scene to marry you – you just don’t do it. You are asking prospects to settle down too quickly! Why would they say yes to someone they don’t really know?

Keep things cool, such actions makes you look desperate and highly questionable. Much like in web marketing, you need to give your prospects a chance to get to know you first. You can put your best foot forward by say, sending them an eBook about your business and what you have to offer. If they like what they see then they are likely to express their interest and make an effort to know more about you.

Do you see where I’m going with this in regards to SEO and search engine marketing?

Only then can you begin stepping up your efforts and effectively fulfill your internet marketing goals by asking your prospects to commit with convincing webinars, product samples and demonstrations or perhaps a detailed case study? If everything goes according to plan and you manage to get them feeling warm and fuzzy inside, you can then seal the deal. Pretty much like dating right?

Don't you think internet marketing is pretty much like the dating scene as well?