In business, email marketing isn’t a thing of the past. Social media may be taking over when it comes to customer engagement. When it comes to email though, businesses are able to provide something social media can’t: more in-depth and customer segment-driven content. According to Hubspot, email marketing databases degrade by about 25% every year. It’s important to keep adding to and refreshing your database so your business’s email marketing campaigns are more successful and are reaching the right people. When email continues to be used each day by 93% of consumers, it’s important for your business to have a presence in the space and one that performs well. Here are three ways you can grow your database.

Your Website

Your website needs to be optimized for driving customers to take action, though this is a no brainer. Have email registration forms on every main page and those of popular products or services. Use your blog, guides and other content marketing-driven pages to encourage visitors on your website to opt-in to your business’s email messages. Having a widget in the sidebar that plays up the page the customer is on and how they can receive similar content via email is one way to get started. You can also:

  • Offer an incentive. Provide those who register their emails with your site a coupon or a code for a discount off their next online purchase.
  • Host a webinar or live podcast and ask for emails when people register or want to view the production.
  • Ask for friend referrals. Referral programs allow you to build your email database. Ask current customers to invite friends to your site using incentivizes such as discounts, free products or services.

Social Media

Use social media to reach new audiences. Stay up to date with trending topics and what your readers seem to value the most in your social media messages. Social media is a great way to encourage people to visit one of the outlets where they can sign-up to receive emails from your business. Just as you segment your email marketing messages, segment how you attract new registrations on social media. Spend some time analyzing what channels and calls to action are successful, and which are not. You can get started on social media by doing the following:

  • Create a Twitter campaign to promote an offer like an e-book, video or free whitepaper to your followers that requires an email address to redeem.
  • Use Pinterest to promote offers that require email signup. Be sure you use compelling images that encourage a click-through and have a call-to-action that prompts the reader to register.
  • Your business’s Facebook page is a great place to promote an offer that requires an email address submission. Same goes for your company’s Google+ and LinkedIn profiles.

On Location

Whether you’re at a trade show or run a brick and mortar store, you should be using in-person interactions to collect email addresses. Don’t be afraid to offer up promotional items from your business or give live-demos of your software.

  • Have your business host its own in-person events like meet-ups and conferences. Then, collect registrations online using email addresses.
  • Co-market an event. Ask the business, or businesses, you’re working with to promote your company’s email newsletters.
  • Any time you attend a networking event, ask for the contact information of people you come across. A follow-up email following the event that asks them if they wish to receive more information from your business establishes a connection and can get you a few more emails in the database.

They key to collecting email addresses is providing something valuable to your target audience, whether it is a coupon or an e-book, and requiring them to submit an email address in order to redeem that incentive. In order to decrease the number of people who opt-out of your campaigns and keep those who have opted-in interested, provide compelling email content. Have accurate, interesting calls to action that encourage people to see value in what you’re offering and enter their email, whether it’s online or in-person.Source: Social Media Today

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YouTube has released its new channel layout, YouTube One Channel. The updates give brands the opportunity to personalize and organize their page in ways that are very different from previous user capabilities.

Here are three tips for handling the new changes and optimizing the new options available:

1. Create a welcome video.

The new YouTube One Channel enables businesses to upload a welcome video geared toward viewers who don’t subscribe to the page. When making the welcome video, keep in mind that viewers don’t enjoy advertisements and tend to engage more with videos that have a personal element. Also, try to keep the videos short, between roughly 30 seconds and a minute, although if your content is compelling enough, you can certainly exceed that limit.

Here are some welcome video ideas in action from several large brands.

Impromptu or “man-on-the-street” interviews. For example, Intel’s “Mobile World Congress 2013: Out and About”:

What the company means to employees. For example: “GE Employees: What We Do at GE”:

A behind-the-scenes look at an important aspect of the company. For example, “Behind the Scenes Look at McDonald’s Photo Shoot”:

2. Personalize your channel.

The new YouTube One Channel is easier to personalize in some ways and more difficult to personalize in others. For instance, personalized backgrounds have been removed but there is now the option to add a large header image called “Channel Art.” This is a way for companies to present a well-branded page that is clean and does not detract from the videos.

The Channel Art will also serve as a background for the brand’s logo and social media buttons. This is great for brands looking to drive traffic from their YouTube page to their other social media environments because the buttons are displayed in a format that viewers are guaranteed to notice.

3. Organize your content.

YouTube also enables users to re-organize their content. Businesses can optimize this feature by categorizing their videos and organizing them into playlists. By organizing videos into playlists businesses are making it easy for viewers to find a collection of videos on a topic of their interest and helping to increase the amount of time users spend on the business’ YouTube channel.

Companies without the resources to develop multiple new videos will also be able to use this new feature to highlight their older videos. This is a great way to keep a YouTube page looking fresh and updated even if there is a long period between video uploads.Source: Ragan’s PRDaily

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Millions of people are using Twitter to connect with family and friends. Others use it as a news outlet; Twitter is usually the first place that relevant news “hits” and many are using Twitter very successfully to build their brand and their business.

Many people don’t get Twitter. I have to admit, I was one of those people just six months ago. You may have an account but simply don’t understand how to use it your advantage. So many that are newbies to social media are doing nothing but spamming a link to their website or pitching their business constantly. Have you ever been approached by someone who wants to share a fabulous way to solve all your financial problems?  All you have to do is become involved in their “business opportunity” and you will be a millionaire by week’s end? Really? Do you avoid people like this? Mind you, I am not knocking business opportunities but the approach some take to sharing their business with others.

Moral to the story…don’t be that person!

When using Twitter for building your business, you want to make sure you are not the person everyone tunes out because all you do is spam your business.

Twitter challenges personal brands to reach out to their audience differently than they would in traditional marketing and/or on other social media platforms. Twitter forces brands to stop using their megaphone and start listening to their customer. Customers are no longer looking to be sold; they want to trust the brand that they are doing business with.  Twitter can be used to gain immediate response to customer requests, drive sales and add the personal touch to your brand’s relationship with the customer. Without all the fancy trappings of traditional marketing packages, how can personal brands spark an emotional connection and build relationships with just 140 characters?

1. The Honesty – people may love or hate what you have to say but it still creates a strong emotional response.  For example: “I hate people who just fish for compliments ugh.”

2. The Feeling – remember, the point of Twitter is to engage your audience. An example of a “feeling tweet” might be something like this…”Feeling tweet-ledee or tweet-ledumb?”

3. The Have You Ever – people love to talk about themselves! Give them an opportunity to do so and watch what happens!  Have you ever is an opened ended scenario that can be approached from almost any subject! Lead with a question and see where it takes you. 4. The What’s Best – again, another tweet that is asking for a response. Great way to see what your audience is tuned into as far as different products, services, etc.

 5. The That’s Just Funny – as with the honesty tweet, this one is subjective but will always illicit an emotional response. What you feel is funny may not appeal to all but it will certainly connect you with others that do think your tweet is funny.

 6. The Quotable – one of my personal favorites! This one speaks for itself.

 7. The Resource Sharing – find a great article or a resource that you know your target audience could benefit from?  Share it! People will love you for it!

 8. The Venting – everyone needs to let off steam once in a while and; chances are, if you are going through some frustration, someone out there has been there. Again, this type of tweet will encourage people to sympathize with what is going on with you.

 9. The Opportunity – share your opportunity sporadically so that your audience will know what you do. The key to this type of tweet is to merge it with other types of tweets throughout the day so that you are not constantly plugging your business.

 10. The Tip of The Day – great way to provide relevant content to your target audience by providing them a valuable piece of info that they can use either personally or professionally. This also builds value for you as an expert within your niche.

Social Media is just that, S O C I A L. It is a great tool to brand you and your business. Consider this, when successful people attend a party they don’t spend the entire event talking about business. No one wants to talk to someone who is constantly shoving business at them. Share the fun things in your life, the people you enjoy spending time with and let your audience get to know YOU!

The purpose of Twitter, and all social media, is not to make money, but to brand YOU and your business AND build relationships with potential and existing customers. The money will follow if you put your customers FIRST. With all social media just remember to mix your “business” talk with your “life” talk.

Start implementing these tips on Twitter and you will be on your way to becoming a Twitter rockstar!by Kim Garst

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Tuesday, December 11, 2012 (11/12/12) was an history making day in the Nigeria twitter sphere as Jobberman.Com, Nigerian’s No 1 Jobs Website, hosted a tweet-meet tilted “Jobberman.Com Career Counselling Day on Twitter”.

This twitter driven career counselling day was hosted by @Jobbermandotcom with two main facilitators @KunleOlaifa and @segunakiode (yours truly ) with supports from @OloriSupergal and @ForMyArea. The tweet-meet lasted for about 2 hours between 2pm – 4pm and it was simply insightful, I must add 

The event gave me great joy because it came weeks after I wrote an earlier post titled – “How To Use Twitter In Your Job Search” and in that post I posited that one of the ways to use twitter in your job search was “Be an active participant of twitter chat” and that was what the “Jobberman.Com Career Couselling Day on Twitter” made a reality!

In the event, job-seekers had the opportunity to ask questions and get answers in real-time. If you missed this twitter event, not to worry, check the Storified form here…

Before I go for today, permit me to recap this phrase “Value is the rule of the game on twitter. So in order to stand out of the crowd of tweeps, endeavour to share valuable tweets and not trash.”

Till next time, we are all work in progress…

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Twitter is becoming more important to both individuals and companies at large. Let’s take a quick look at this micro-blogging platform using the letter I in what I’ve dubbed: ‘The three Is of Twitter’.

  • Interact: First and clearly, Get on twitter to interact. Among other things, you are supposed to tweet conversationally. This means that you must be ready to defend or at least comment about your tweets when tweeps request such. Not just those, some of your followers are going to tweet at you. While it’s not your duty to respond to all (especially those with thousands of followers), do your best to respond to most of them as you get notified of their tweets. Don’t join the wagon of those who only interact with those they know offline. Interaction here means, you hold conversations (as much as you can) even with those followers you’ve never met offline. That’s the real essence of NETworking.
  • Inform: If you’re already on twitter, ain’t you tired of tweeps who only tweet about how their dogs are doing, how they couldn’t get a cab and how girls snubbed them all through the day? Am sure you’ve come across those kinds of tweets. It could be tempting to tweet such too but ensure such tweets are reduced to the barest minimum on your TL. What’s your expertise? Get your followers informed. For effective personal branding on twitter, ensure you’re a master of a certain cause. Tweet links to articles you find interestingly useful in that same direction. It’s good to be focused on twitter. It has advantages for you and your followers. For instance, I know who to tweet at if I need information about Social Media. Remember that the primary aim of twitter is Information broadcast. Let it be a meaningful one, though.

Inspire: This combines the first two (interact and inform). Just like every word you let out of your mouth, your tweets have effects on your followers, whether positive or negative. So, let your tweets be as inspiring as they can be. Resist from using questionable words. On this, do understand that SUBs are not inspiring in any way, reasons notwithstanding. I bet your followers want to wake up in the morning and get lifted by your tweets even if it means referring to them to an online post.

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This is the era of new job titles and with it come new responsibilities. A leading Media Content and Communication Company in Lagos is currently in search of a social media professional.

Job Summary:

The successful candidate will join our online team, oversee and contribute recurrent content to holistically support our strategic online communication objectives.

Qualifications and Experience:

  • Excels at research, possesses excellent writing skills and the ability to crank editorial and technical writing output without brooding.
  • Has work experience or training in advertising, PR, online marketing or a similar field.
  • Proficient with Microsoft Office products.
  • Dedicated to blogging and use of Twitter and Facebook and understands the power of social media marketing.
  • Demonstrated creativity and documented immersion in social media.
  • Demonstrated ability to map out a social media marketing strategy and then drive that strategy proven by testing and metrics.
  • Experience sourcing and managing content development and publishing.
  • Ability to jump from the creative side of marketing to analytical side, able to demonstrate why their ideas are analytically sound.
  • Discretion to identify threats and opportunities in user generated content.
  • Understands social media universe including YouTube, StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit, Flickr, forums, Twitter, Wikis, blogs, etc…We’re looking for a social media addict who maintains a personal mix of participatory expertise from among these channels.
  • Knowledge of search engine optimization-think including basic keyword research.
  • Has excellent verbal and written communication skills and an ability to work individually on a project or in a team environment.
  • Is eager to meet and exceed objectives and take on more responsibility.
  • Brings to the position outstanding organizational skills and the ability to handle multiple projects simultaneously while meeting deadlines.
  • Ability to communicate results to management and can be effective in a fast-pace environment.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Interact with our customers to align their needs, with our corporate objectives.
  • Be the eyes and ears of our brand and our clients’ brands as if your own reputation depended on it.
  • Build and maintain our content distribution network by way of social media channels.
  • Minute by minute participation in conversations that surround our content and brand, answer comments and be a mediator.
  • Identify threats and opportunities in user generated content surrounding our brand, report to appropriate parties.
  • Create content for feeds and snippets in various social media sites.
  • Conduct keyword research including cataloging and indexing target keyword phrases.
  • Optimizing tags, on our feeds, sharing sites like YouTube/Flickr and search engines through copy-writing, creative & keyword optimization & buzz pocket mining.
  • Create and update daily, weekly and monthly reports.
  • Analyze campaigns and translate anecdotal or qualitative data into recommendations and plans for revising the social media campaigns.

Interested candidates should forward their CVs to jobs@ashwellandwhite.com

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Going through the hustle in the city of Lagos, I get handed about 2 different flyers a day, seconds later, I squeeze and dump then in a nearby bin, not on the floor. Lol, one day, I took time to analyze how many people actually read these flyers, about 90% are overloaded with work for that day and may not be interested, the remaining 10% may actually need the information and at that particular point the environment is too noisy to place a call, at the end of it all, some lose the flyers. So I ask my SME owners and others that still believe in sharing flyers, is it a waste of money or a waste of money?

Now some are thinking what the alternative is but some already know but have ignored because they don’t believe. With this medium I’m about to tell you, you have to promise not to tell anyone. It’s going to give you an advantage over your competitors, It is FREE, measurable and information about what your company offers can be posted and reposted, shared and “liked”, Followed and “favorited”.  This is what I’ve been preaching, online gospel for your business; Social media.

Rather than go in to gibberish that you the reader won’t understand, its better to use an example to illustrate my point.

Tolani makes all sorts of cakes for weddings, birthdays, cupcakes and so on. She shares flyers and complains because she gets one call after 500 flyers. Now, let’s take her on social media. Outlining the top social media sites in Nigeria, we have Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram.  Firstly, we open a Facebook Fan Page , fully describing her work, experience and display of photographs of cakes made by her. She goes further by inviting a couple of people through email or suggestions to “Like” the page. Tolani’s first goal is to increase her fan base by engaging her current fans, most times, family and friends. With engaging content like talking about the concept behind every cake and the inspiration, her fans like and reshare, she gains more fans on that platform. She also listens to her fans on their opinions, questions and suggestions.

Tolani opens a twitter, G+ and instagram, using all three mediums to promote her brand by being informative and consistent.

Result of this, Tolani builds a network of over 40,000 people, gets job from these connections.  The question is, with a flyer can you achieve this? Her connections/Fans on social media will always be there and with good management continue to expand.

Fit your Business into this profile. Build a brand. Create connections. Don’t be limited. Embrace social!

If you want to see a particular topic in this space, you could send a mail or drop a comment.

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Discover how using Social Media Marketing to promote your business can keep you top of mind with your prospects. Use Social Media to position yourself as an expert in your field, teach people how to solve their problems with your product or service and develop a lasting relationship. After all, we all know people buy from people they know like and trust.

This video highlights four simple steps to getting a hang of social media marketing. You won’t need to be a social media pro to understand the points discussed. Nuff said…just hit the play button now and find out yourself

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In the process of building up a social media empire, you are bound to make a gaffe or two. A simple mistake in how something is written or an emotional impulse can lead to disastrous consequences for your brand, website and product – depending on how you handle it. What may have been a simple slip-up has now turned into a catastrophe for public relations. How on earth can you smooth this all over and repair any damage done? We have compiled several tips that you must adhere to in the midst of a social networking bombshell that will help get your brand through this ordeal.

Being Emotional

Whenever you make a mistake online, the entire world can witness it. Because of this, you not only have to worry about the gaffe that sparked controversy but also the way in which you handle the aftermath. If you lash out or go into an emotional tirade over how people are responding, you are guaranteed to make the situation worse. You won’t have to worry about pinging backlinks because people from all over the world will be sharing your meltdown with others. Be nice, cordial and apologize for the mishap. When people use social media to lash out at those lashing out at them, it never ends well.

Ignoring Comments

You can use this opportunity as a chance to connect with people that you might not have otherwise. By being attentive, responsive and owning up to the mistake, you can demonstrate the values and virtues of your social media organization. Those who hide behind the veil of the internet may realize that countless new discoverers of your enterprise will use this as an opportunity to degrade and humiliate you. If you engage them right from the start, you have a better chance of diffusing the situation and preventing your already-viral mishap from getting any larger.

Arguing With Others

While you do not wish to ignore those negative comments, you also want to avoid responding with negativity. You may believe that your mistake was simply a mistake and that by apologizing, everything will be fine. The truth is that some people cannot be pleased no matter what you do – in this case, you do not need to argue with them over the initial intent or meaning. Even if you are right, you will never convince everyone of that. By being polite, you stand to gain much more ground than you do if you come swinging out of your corner.

Navigating The Situation

You have to realize that once a social mishap has occurred and the mistake is out there, you will have very little control over its spread. You can look at this as an opportunity – others who are pinging backlinks to your site and social media will increase your exposure in the long-run. Most of the discussion and framing of the argument will be done by those who are either on your side or against you. Be courteous, follow up with polite comments as best you can and keep a cool head above all else. This too shall pass.

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This week in Lagos, Nigeria is Social Media Week – #SMWLagos and various events has held to mark #SMWLagos. Wednessday, February 20, 2013 was Day 3 of the #SMWLagos and I was part of the panel at #SMWJobSearch organized by Jobberman.Com held at the Lagos E-learning Center.

This post is a promise based on my tweet after my speech at the event…

Gave a very short speech at #smwJobsearch #SMWLagos wld do a blog on it 2mrw 

— Segun Akiode (@segunakiode) February 20, 2013

Ok, lets have a recap of the highlights from the event and some #smwJobSearch tweets as well 

The Panel of Discussant: we had a panel of three – Opeyemi Awoyemi (Co-founder Jobberman.Com), Gideon Bello (Head, Client Services Jobberman.Com) and Segun Akiode (…short of an introduction o, check bio after the post).

The Main Event: Opeyemi Awoyemi gave the opening speech followed by a speech my yours truly and Gideon Bello. After all the speech, participants had their opportunity to ask questions. See some tweets below:

“No strait jacket way to get a job” #smwJobsearch #SMWLagos

— Segun Akiode (@segunakiode) February 20, 2013

“The traditional ways of getting a job are giving way to Unconventional ways of getting a job” #smwJobsearch#SMWLagos

— Segun Akiode (@segunakiode) February 20, 2013

“Build a Brand that is Attractive to Employers” – #uncoventionaljobsearch #smwJobsearch #SMWLagos

— Segun Akiode (@segunakiode) February 20, 2013

These are a few of the tweets from the event capturing the main thoughts shared, for more tweets, I Storified the event and you can check it here…  

Great way to participate in #SMWLagos and before I go, see me at the event…

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