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The State of Social Media Marketing – August 2014 Edition

state of social media marketing2014

Do you struggle to keep up with the latest social media changes? With the rapidly evolving world of social media, it’s easy to feel like your head is spinning just to keep track of all the new features that are always coming into the mix. LinkedIn has grown immensely in the past 18 months, Facebook seems to go through a complete shift once a year and Twitter had some big changes we saw earlier this year. In May we began a new segment on our blog called The State of Social Media Marketing that is intended to encapsulate the most significant changes you should be aware of in the industry. LinkedIn Is Changing Their Search Algorithm Although we are still getting the full details on this development, one thing is certain: LinkedIn is making big changes to their search algorithm. One career expert wrote about some changes she noticed happening back in April and we’ve also been noticing big differences in how various terms are ranking individuals but have yet to determine exactly what is going on. We will keep you posted! LinkedIn Debuts Job Search App For iPhone We spend a lot of time talking about how to find [...]

5 Easy Steps To Organize Your Prospects & Build Relationships Using LinkedIn’s Relationship Tab [Infographic]

linkedin relationships tab

Have you ever wondered how many of your connections are clients, leads or potential prospects? Do you forget to send follow up emails to some of your prospects? Perhaps you regularly lose the notes that you have collected on your hottest leads? Or have you ever wished you remembered how you met a particular prospect? If any of these situations are true for you, then you would find great value from LinkedIn’s built in organizational tool, the Relationship Tab, available to both free and paid members. Even if you have not yet experienced these issues, the larger your network grows, the more valuable you will find this feature to help you keep organized and stay on top of your networking and lead generation efforts. The feature also allows you save and record information on contacts in your network that you are not yet connected to (2nd, 3rd, and group connections). The benefit of this is that you can create a list of potential prospects that you would like to connect with, record information that you want to keep handy about them and then track your efforts to connect with them. You don’t need to worry about the information that you [...]

19 LinkedIn Mistakes That Make Me Pull My Hair Out

linkedin mistakes

If you aren’t getting the results you are looking for, it’s highly possible you’re making one (or several) LinkedIn mistakes that are turning off potential clients. Turning people off doesn’t always have to provoke a dramatic response that involves the other person slandering your business on Yelp but even in its most harmless form, it hurts your bottom line. You only get one chance to make a good first impression and when you waste it on making rookie LinkedIn mistakes, you’ve already shut the door on what could have been a mutually beneficial relationship. Take a few minutes to review the 19 most common LinkedIn mistakes I see to make sure you aren’t making any of them. It could be the difference between making or breaking your next sale. 1. Your Profile Is Incomplete An incomplete profile does nothing to build your credibility with prospects on LinkedIn, so why even bother? Yes, it’s no small task to thoughtfully fill out your entire profile and ensure it has impact in a way that speaks to your specific target market but it’s important. If you want a simple way to get to a complete and optimized profile, check out the 21 Steps [...]

5-Step Content Marketing Checklist

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Do you have a content marketing plan for your business? Would you like to create blog posts people get value from and will share? Blogging for business is so much more than writing an article and throwing it up on your website. It encompasses a lot of planning, preparing, research, writing and editing until you get something that truly resonates with the audience you’re trying to reach. In an effort to organize this process for myself, I created a content marketing checklist that you might find useful when creating and promoting content for your business. I’ve distilled it down into five key steps: Planning & Research Writing Optimization Making It “Shareable” Promotion Even though there are several points for each step, there are still many more that weren’t covered in my attempt to be concise. If you feel something important is missing, let us know in the comments below. Make sure you scroll past the infographic for more detailed explanations of each step. Your 5 Step Content Marketing Checklist [INFOGRAPHIC] Feel free to share this infographic without modifications on your blog or anywhere you like with credit to Top Dog Social Media and a link back to this page. 1. [...]

5 Ways To Maximize Reach With Content Marketing & LinkedIn

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I often have people tell me at speaking events, “Melonie I just haven’t got any business from LinkedIn.” Do you struggle with trying to figure out how to actually build relationships or get results on LinkedIn? One of the keys to a successful LinkedIn or social selling campaign is content marketing. The beauty about content marketing and social selling is that it will always help you build a relationship, as long as it has context and relevance to the person you’re trying to reach. The problem with most peoples’ strategy is that do not invest the time to learn how to communicate via LinkedIn (or social media) in a way that speaks to their target audience. Instead, many push a selfish agenda that turns off prospects faster than a power outage in a busy nightclub. Content is more than just an article that you send to someone you want to sell something to, it’s offers you so many advantages that can’t be acquired otherwise. Here are just a few of the benefits of integrating content marketing with your social selling and LinkedIn efforts: Provides Value. It’s a lot easier to get your foot in the door with a new connection [...]

7 Steps To Creating A Social Media Strategy For Your Business

how to create a social media strategy

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry once stated that “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” Basically this is a nice way of saying that if you don’t have a plan to follow through on your goals, you are wasting your time. This was never truer than in the case of using social media for business. I cannot tell you how many people have shared with me that they have spent a huge amount of time and/or money using social media for their business and have seen little to no return. They are completely disillusioned with social media and many think it was a complete waste of their time and money. The truth is, in most cases they were absolutely right! This doesn’t mean that social media can’t be one of the best tools that you have at your disposal to reach out to your potential prospects or customers and turn them into brand advocates or customers. Because it is. But you can’t just jump into social media without a plan or you will just be wasting your time. I am going to share with you 7 steps to create a social media strategy that will provide you with real and [...]

LinkedIn Company Page Vs Personal Profile: Which Is Better?

linkedin company page vs profile, which is better?

By far, one of the most popular questions I get from people is, “How do I get more leverage from my LinkedIn company page?” Many “social media experts” will jump at every chance to defend any aspect of the online social world but I’m going to tell you exactly what I believe. Company pages are not a big deal and they often don’t generate tangible results. There, I said it! Yes, it might come as a shock to many of you that I would ever suggest any aspect of LinkedIn is irrelevant but company pages aren’t where I’ve found success that produces sales. Company pages do provide a unique opportunity for exposure that wasn’t previously available to personal profiles though: Sponsored Updates. Does this mean you shouldn’t have a LinkedIn Company Page? If you have a business you definitely should have one but the real results always come from building relationships on your personal LinkedIn Profile. 3 Reasons Why Your Personal LinkedIn Profile Will Generate More Results Than a LinkedIn Company Page 1. People Want To Deal With People, Not Logos When you’re on social media, whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or any other network, do you prefer to interact [...]

What Is Social Selling and Will It Work For You?

what is social selling

Are you interested in generating more leads, prospects and sales using social media but don’t know where to start? Have you invested time and maybe even money into marketing on social media, but just have seen the kind of results you hoped for? Social selling may be the solution you have been looking for! Social selling will not only add new leads in your sales funnel but it will also enable you to actively engage and build relationships with these same leads, moving them further through the buying process. When done correctly, social selling can help you to outperform your non-social media using competitors.  In fact, 72.6% of salespeople who use social media outperform their colleagues who aren’t using it. This article will outline why social selling works, five things your company needs to do before attempting to socially sell and five daily social selling activities to improve your online presence.  Why use social selling? Cold calling is not nearly as effective as it used to be. This once popular sales approach worked for businesses in the past, but now comes off as intrusive and can turn off prospective clients. In fact, over 90% of decision makers are saying they [...]

LinkedIn History: The Road To 300+ Million Members

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Watching the rise of social networks replicates a lot of the excitement that surrounded the dot com bubble but without the burst, at least not yet. It almost seems like to be a billion dollar company, you have to have started in your parent’s garage or basement and shacked up with a few other people just crazy enough to stand the marathon coding sessions. LinkedIn history definitely does not stray too far from this story. Reid Hoffman, the founder of LinkedIn, is at the center of the critical parts of LinkedIn history that were pivotal in defining the path to becoming a billion dollar company. Hailed as a business and tech genius, Hoffman has worn every hat along the corporate ladder and is a prominent angel investor for promising startups. A Tour Through LinkedIn History (2002-Present) 2002 Reid Hoffman recruits a team of old colleagues from SocialNet and PayPal to work on a new idea. They setup office in Reid’s 1-bedroom apartment. 2003 Six months after Reid assembles “the dream team”, LinkedIn officially launches on May 5, 2003. Growth starts out slow with as little as 20 new registered users on the worst days. Reid Hoffman and his team manage [...]

The Guide To Social Media Time Management

theGuide to SocMed Time

Do you struggle with social media time management? Are you spending more time than necessary and not getting the results you want? Most people tend to waste a lot of time on social media because the process they have to complete those tasks takes much more time than necessary. Even worse, I find they spend a lot of time on tasks that create little long-term value while missing out on the most important high leveraging tasks. I considered writing this article in a way that would set specific times for specific tasks but I quickly realized that wasn’t going to make sense for everybody. Instead, I tried to uncover some of the major reasons why inefficiency in social media occurs, how to identify where you could be wasting time and some simple guidelines that will help you make the right decisions to become highly productive. Top 5 Reasons You Are Wasting Time on Social Media Spending time on tasks that don’t produce results. It’s so easy to waste hours a day just looking at your Facebook insights or seeing how many shares you got on your last post. You can’t question the efficacy of your social efforts if you aren’t [...]