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Using Klout to Measure Your Social Media Influence

Using Klout to Measure Your Social Media Influence:
How Reliable Is It?

Have you heard of Klout? It’s a tool that measures your influence on customers, clients, or anyone else who follows you through social media. It has its flaws—we’ll discuss those in a moment—but it’s useful because it offers yet another way to measure your ROI. Whether you’re a marketer or business owner, you want to be sure you’re spending your time and money wisely, and using strategies and tools that accomplish your social networking goals. Klout can help you do that, although we don’t recommend you reliably on it to the exclusion of other tools—at least, not yet.

Currently, Klout is being used to: 

Generate guest lists for special events. Last year, Virgin America used Klout scores to find and invite guests to their Toronto Launch Event. Qualified “influencers” were flown free to the party. [1] To their credit, Virgin America told guests that they were not obligated to Tweet or blog about the event if they accepted the invitation. They also asked guests to disclose their free flights if and when mentioned the event or company.[2]

Offer product samples for review. Popchips, a company that makes all-natural snacks, has used Klout to find snack-food “influencers.” Those people received free samples of Popchips when the company started marketing their products in new cities.

Research and find bloggers. Services like Blogdash help companies find individual bloggers who have influence regarding their products or services. The Huffington Post has started putting a widget below each of its article, so readers looking for more information on the topic can find the top influential bloggers. [3]

Klout isn’t perfect. One objection users raise is that it leans too heavily on Twitter, even though it’s integrated into Facebook. Some users also criticize its algorithmic formula, saying human analysis is still needed to determine exactly how we influence each other, and why. [4] Others are already figuring out ways to “game the system,” or persuade followers to cite them as influential about certain desired topics. That kind of misuse turns Klout into a popularity contest, and skews results, rather than allowing it to work as a genuine analytical device.

Will Klout address these and other issues, and emerge as a worthy competitor to other ways of measuring your social networking outreach? Can Klout eliminate its current potential for abuse and bias? A new report says that Facebook lost about 6 million U.S. users in May, although it continues to grow overseas. Will new players like Klout move in to claim the social networking field? We’ll be watching to find out, and we’ll keep you posted.

 

 

If you’d like to know more about Professional Mojo, give us a call at 678-561-6656 or email us at Info@ProfessionalMojo.com.

Facebook Makes Big, Beneficial Changes – What You Need to Know

Facebook Makes Business Page Changes

Facebook Makes Business Page Changes

Facebook has rolled out several new changes to the way we can interact and administer business pages, both improving access to metrics, improving ease of admin and improving search engine results.

1) You can now access all of your pages from a new location. Click Home, then Pages. You can now see ALL of your pages listed along with last update, activity and more. It’s a great and convenient way to look at the high-level engagement metrics for your pages.

2) TAG – You’re It for People: It’s even easier to tag friends in posts. No longer is the @ sign required. Just start typing and the list will pop up. choose from there.

3) TAG – You’re It! for Business: Starting today (5/12), Facebook will allow you to tag business pages in photos. This is a huge step to again improve the engagement between your business and the customer. By tagging, your search engine optimization could be very positively impacted. Right now, Facebook only allows this for pages that are in the brand, product or people category, but will likely roll it out to other categories over time. (http://www.facebook.com/notes/facebook-pages/feature-launch-photo-tagging-for-pages/10150168953654822)

How Does This Affect Photo Privacy?

Just remember that your privacy is your responsibility and is reliant on which settings you choose for your account. If a photo post is enabled to “everyone,” then it can appear publicly on the Photos tab of the Page and the Page admins can see it. If it is, published for “only friends”, than the permission will only be granted to your friends to view your photos.

So You’re Not Steven Spielberg

YouTube and Social Media

Get Started on YouTube

Let’s say you’re not Steven Spielberg, award-winning director and producer of Saving Private Ryan, Schindler’s List, and over a hundred more memorable, entertaining films. (That is, unless you really are Spielberg, in which case you’ve just proved, by reading this, that you’re also a savvy marketing strategist). We at Professional Mojo aren’t Mr. Spielberg either (in case you were wondering).

But you’re probably not Mr. Spielberg, and maybe you don’t know your way around today’s video cameras. Technology changes fast, and many of the new cameras offer features that can seem unfamiliar and confusing.

But no doubt you’ve also seen plenty of YouTube videos, so you know that people are using these cameras to shoot and upload footage. Some of the videos out there are simply intended to be cute and funny, like the ones with kids and kittens.

But there’s a lot more to YouTube than kittens.

Did you know that approximately 85% of the total US internet audience now watches online videos? Of those videos, about 43% come from YouTube. Think of it: when you create a video for your small business, YouTube gives you the potential to reach thousands or hundreds of thousands of consumers, customers, and clients.

Statistics show that YouTube hosts around 144 million—that’s so impressive, let’s say it again—144 million UNIQUE visitors each month. That’s about one-third of the U.S. population. Since Google purchased YouTube, YouTube has also overtaken Yahoo as the second most popular search engine, which is great for search engine optimization words.

See where we’re going with this? YouTube is a powerful, exciting marketing and social media tool.  If you aren’t using it, it’s time to start.

You don’t have to be a Spielberg to shoot a 30-second clip that promotes your product or service on YouTube, which is free, easily accessible, and unbelievably popular.

YouTube has features that allow you to cross-promote your small business and build communities. Users and viewers can share videos via Facebook, Twitter, Stumbleupon, and other networking platforms.

YouTube is instantaneous. With a few clicks, you can send a video promoting your business to all your contacts at once, immediately reaching your target audience and, if you wish, everyone in your personal, social network.

In our next post, we’ll tell you how to choose a video camera wisely, to get you on the way to recording your own YouTube content. As they say, see you at the movies.

 

 

Source for YouTube statistics:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFTHOkCj0-I

 

Social Media and the Snowpocalypse

Social media and the snowpocalypse

Digging out from under the ice.

One of Professional Mojo’s offices is in Douglasville, GA, right outside Atlanta. It’s probably no news to you, friends, that we have been in a deep freeze for almost a solid week. Our clients in Minnesota and Michigan may be prepared for something like this, but the state of Georgia? Not so much.

This snowpocalypse, as some have dubbed it, turned everything upside down. People were stranded on interstates, out of gas and out of food. Folks, like me, trapped in our homes, kids out of school for a week, power outages…you get the picture. Yet, in the midst of this, we have witnessed a perfect marriage: social media’s real-time communication and the public’s hunger for immediate information.

Here are a few of my take-aways about social media and the snowpocalypse:

  • Local, relevant information makes a difference: A good example of this is the Douglas County Happenings Facebook page. I’ve watched this page and it has been growing organically for some time, but not at a rapid rate. Thanks to the efforts of the folks there, it quickly became a clearinghouse of information for those in the local area. We may only be 30 minutes from Atlanta, but sometimes it seems like a million miles away, especially when the “major” outlets cover the larger counties. Community is essential in social media and this page delivered.
  • Community members expect answers – right now, please: If you are going to use any of the social media channels, be prepared for praise when you do well and for criticism when you don’t. Several pages did not have direct access to emergency divisions and were not able to provide quick answers. Even when they did have a direct line, decisions often take time. The people posting don’t want to hear excuses, they want to see answers. I saw a lot of frustration when answers weren’t immediately forthcoming. Most page admins did a good job of taking the snarks in stride. Others? Well, they snarked back, especially on the Twitter streams.
  • Multiple channels reach people where they are: 11Alive News did the best job of this throughout the snowpocalypse. I was impressed by their use of every available channel to distribute information to the widest audience possible. I interacted with them in the following ways:
    • Via their website where they posted DOT road updates, business closings, government closings, school closings and more
    • Via the live chat feature on their website, where I logged in and was able to ask questions, in real-time. I loved this, too, because I could see the ongoing stream from the other people in the room.
    • Via Twitter where they took questions, redirected folks to information and offered a steady stream of news.
    • Via Facebook where they continue to answer questions about mail, roads, heaters, and more.
    • Via their phone bank, which was the only one of its kind I saw during the snowpocalypse. Any one could call in and ask questions of the volunteers about weather, road closings, health issues, etc.
    • Via their ongoing newscast, which constantly reminded folks of every OTHER channel above.

In short, they did an extraordinary job of providing information in every way possible to meet the community where the community wanted to dialog. Me? I personally preferred Twitter and the chat room. My mom? She was stuck to Facebook.

If ever there was a time for social media, it is now. We were able to help our neighbors (because we saw them post), answer questions about the roads in our neighborhood, and offered route alternatives to people who ventured out.

We learned about how others were coping, played online games with people on the other side of the world, and dreamed of warmer days.

The warmer days aren’t quite here yet, but the community I feel in a city of 5 million is quite astonishing. All because we are connected in amazing ways via social media.

Social Media 101: Why?

Social Media 101: Why?

Social Media isn't going anywhere.

I promised I’d be better about writing for Professional Mojo, not just for our clients <smile>, so let’s start 2011 off right with a series on the fundamentals. If you check the archives, you’ll see that we’ve talked about the fundamentals before, but it sure seems like folks are conveniently forgetting.

More than ever before we see random digital strategies cropping up like weeds in abandoned fields. This is caused in large part because companies, and their leaders, are beginning to “get it”. And by “get it” I mean understand that there is value to meeting their customers, prospects, vendors and partners where they are.

Unfortunately, with the stampede to adopt, strategy takes a backseat. Ask yourself a few questions before embarking on social media and online portfolio development:

  • Do you have a marketing strategy in place for your organization and, if so, how do you see online portfolio development fitting into it?
  • Do you have hard metrics in place for your other channels? How are they performing? How do you hope social media channels will work with those efforts?
  • What about your website? Is it performing?
  • What do you want from the social media effort? Be as concrete as possible.
  • Do you understand that it is about relationships and communication, not about fast cash?
  • How much time, effort and money are you willing to invest in doing this right?
  • What’s your timeline?
  • Who are your target audiences? What platforms do they use? How do they use them? What do they expect from being part of a community?

There are hundreds of other “qualifying” questions we ask our clients because like anything worth doing, developing a meaningful online portfolio is worth doing well.  The online portfolio significantly impacts your reputation in today’s world. Take the time to determine why you really want to do this and then seek out the information, knowledge and expertise to do it right.

Retweet Professional Mojo

Retweet Professional Mojo

Professional Mojo Marketing offers consulting, social media audits, training and full-service management for both for-profit and non-profit clients in almost every industry. Our print and websites rock, too. Contact us for more.

Social Media Entitlement Might Bite You

I logged into my personal Facebook account today (you know, the one where all of my weird high school friends and husband’s family lurk) and many of them had gone hog wild Liking every type of conceivable page: brands, products, services, events, and more. You name it and some were Liking 12-18 pages at a time.

So, I asked a few of them what was going on. Why the flurry of Likes and why were they spamming me begging me to Like the pages, too?  The answer: because they will get something for free. The following conversation ensued and was informative.

Social Media entitlement

You like us! You really, really do! (but for how long?)

Me: “How often do you expect a discount or a freebie when you Like a page?”

Jessica: “All the time. I should get something for being in the community just about every day. Honestly, that’s why I Liked them, right?”

Me: “But, what if they also gave you great news, articles, lifestyle tips and only the occasional coupon or discount?”

Jessica: “I don’t think I’d care. They promised me stuff, didn’t say anything about that. And if I don’t get something, I’ll Unlike them right away. In fact, if it’s a one-time special, after the special is over I’ll Unlike them probably so my stream doesn’t clutter up.”

Jessica wasn’t the only person I’ve talked to who says that they are solely prompted by something for nothing and will drop that page like a hot potato once the gravy-train ends.

What’s the moral of the story?

  • Luring people into Liking your page with a steady stream of contests, give-aways and freebies only feeds the need for more and bigger give-aways.
  • A community built on this type of strategy is not a community at all. Social media is about creating relationships and dialog. It’s become perverted by johnny-come-latelys who are pressured to increase numbers, not seek engagement.
  • Your metrics will be skewed because people will Unlike you at the blink of an eye as soon as their entitlement ends, yet you sure looked great while you were giving away stuff!
Look, it’s fine to run a contest, incite excitement, and we, too, manage communities where we use contests, discounts and coupons to reward members. However, these specials are only occasional and we ensure that we are engaging with them in many other ways: questions, articles, news, etc. How can you solve a problem for them today or improve their life?

So, what do they really receive for being a member of your community? If it’s only about getting something for free, then you are not creating evangelists for your brand. And you’ll be the hot potato they drop next.

In summary, focus on quality. Focus on targeted folks who really want to hear about what you do and how you do it. Focus on making their lives better. Then, surprise them once in a while with a really great reward.

 

Interested in growing communities who are suited to you and want to hear what you have to say? Contact Professional Mojo Marketing for more.

 

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