5 Social Media Trends for 2014

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* Click the infographic for more info.

The Top 5 key points you need to know for 2014…. are right here!
We know Social Media, as an industry, is about to EXPLODE so why not get ahead of the game in 2014 and pick up on the useful trends.
Facebook? Google +? Twitter? LinkedIn? Don’t worry, we have it all covered for you.

With Social Media being such a new industry, you ARE going to get things wrong. Businesses struggle. It’s a fact.
They may try, but give up and think that it’s not worth their time.
Wrong!
If you’re doing it wrong, then you’re doing it the wrong way.

We hope these trends will help you.

Produced Social Media Buz

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How To Build You Profile on LinkedIn [Infographic]

LinkedIn is the most popular social networking platform for business professionals. There are endless opportunities to help you succeed in the professional world, from motivational articles to new career opportunities, you can find it all on LinkedIn. Whether you are new member or a veteran you should always be updating your profile and if you haven’t touched it in months, now is the time to step up and give your profile a makeover! But what makes a perfect profile? I have put together a few tips for your to revamp your professional profiles and be the new, digital you!

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By Heather Wong

5 Tips On Using Social Media To Land That Dream Job [Infographic]

I recently watched ‘The Start Up Kids’, a documentary about young entrepreneurs and their journeys to evolving their companies. There was one guy that stood out to me, Brian Wong.

He is one of the founders of ‘Kiip’ a mobile network in which you can gain real rewards for virtual achievements.

He is also the youngest person ever to receive venture capital funding, beating Mark Zuckerberg by a year! In his interview he says how he started off by emailing and how with the use of this was able to reach the unreachable. Wong got the attention of people who without social platforms would not have been able to get in contact with and through hard work and dedication, Wong eventually got offered a job. I think this just goes to show the importance of social media.

Did you know 94% of recruiters rely on social media for their process? In this day and age, it is vital whether we are contacting old friends or reaching out for that new golden opportunity, the world is now at your fingertips. As Wong said, ‘This is the Culture of Listening’ with this in mind Wong has inspired me to share with you my top 5 tips on using social media to land that dream job.

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By Heather Wong

5 Types Of Blog Posts That Will Promote Engagement

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1. The did you know post

Blogs always try to hit you with an amazing new fact or bit of information that they think no one else in the world has heard before!
E.g. Did you that that Wednesday comes after Tuesday!
And you have to try and make out that you are totally blown away by this next exciting fact that you have just saw.
Come on! We all know that this is just a plea to try and get the viewer to carry on looking at the ret of your blog. If they succeeded then you fell for it!

2. The issue post

A lot of blogs take the oppositional view, just to get some kind of interaction from viewers.
E.g. Margret Thatcher was an amazing Prime-Minister and done great things for the country.
This is a highly controversial topic and is likely to get people to argue against it. This is one great way to get people to talk on your blog. But the things they might be saying, is something you might not be too fond of!

3. The question post

Ask your blog some questions!
If you want to get someone to talk in a normal conversation, you’d usually ask them a question because you want to hear some answers. It should be no different in a blog. You are trying to get people to talk on it, you want interaction, you want engagement, and you want people to be talking about it. What greater way is there than to ask questions to your audience and receive some answers!

4. The top 100 list

Everyone loves a good list! Whether it is a list of the best looking celebrities, or the best football players of all time!
When we look at top 100 lists we all go from the worst to the best, and we do take note. And there is always a talking point in there. Tulisa Contostavlos was a massive talking point last year when she got voted sexiest woman of the year. Likewise, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo is always a massive talking point amongst sports fans of who is the best. So there is always an element of debate which is exactly what you want when you are trying to attract engagement.

5. The giveaway post

People of the UK love a freebee. In fact, scrap that, everyone loves a freebee. Whether that is moisturiser or a little spray of aftershave, if it’s free, we’re there!
We’re are instantly more attracted to a magazine if it’s in a plastic case and you can see that there something in there that you get free. Even if you are not the slightest bit interested in what the magazine or about, or interested in what the free item actually is, we are 100% more drawn to it if we know we are going to take it home having not paid for it.

By Mitchell Perry

6 Tips For New LinkedIn Users

Are you wondering whether LinkedIn is the way forward for you? Well whether you’re considering LinkedIn for your own personal use or for your business, there are plenty of reason why LinkedIn can be a great and useful tool for you. Whether you’re looking for a new opportunity or just looking to broaden your business connection. If you have already decided LinkedIn is the right step for you but don’t know where to begin here’s a few tips to get you on your way to the LinkedIn perfection.

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1. Asking for Recommendations

Recommendations are often an element of a LinkedIn profile overlooked by newbies to the platform. However, Recommendations are key! Just like business in any other form repetition is important. A potential client who has no previous experience with you or your company will look at your Recommendations. Clearly the more recommendations you have the better you seem to potential customers.

While some may argue the best course of action is to wait for other to recommend you for your skills. A more proactive and faster way is to gather recommendations is as simple as give and take. In most cases if you recommend others for their skills they will return the favour.

2. Add The Personal Touch

LinkedIn does offer a pre-complete template for you to request recommendations however it is more effective if you personalize these. It will increase the likelihood of getting positive responses and possibly improve the quality of the recommendations you receive.

3. Add your Skills and Experience

Adding your skills and previous experience is very important as the more information you give the more reasons there are for other users to connect with you therefore expanding your social media presence which could later be converted into paying customers.

4. Promote your Profile Online and Print

Adding your profile URL to your email signature, website alongside your business cards, letterheads and other print material can easily expand your profiles audience without too much work. Making sure your profile URL is distinctive is also a huge factor when taking this step as you want it to be short and memorable for your audience.

5. Connecting With Others

                          

Building up your connections is extremely important within the LinkedIn world. Start of connecting to people you already know and follow this up by connecting to people who are connected to more than one other person you know. This is a great way to easily widen your audience without adding random users. This is important as is the LinkedIn world, it’s all about making appropriate connections that are deemed useful for both parties involved. If you’re a business it’s also incredibly important to connect to other companies that you have or still do have a working relationship with as this shows support for their company which will more than likely be returned in the form of engagement or recommendations.

The next step when connecting to other users is to connect the potentially beneficial people or companies in your sector. The whole point of LinkedIn is to connect to other businesses and professionals to create business opportunities so use it! LinkedIn is a great tool in order to connect directly to the decision makers of a business to create opportunities so don’t be afraid to message them. We recommend to connect to other users around your business target before connecting to them. We suggest this as when you do connect to them it looks more natural and gives your a foundation to build a working relationship on. The last tip is to always create a personalized message tailored to the user you are connecting with. This is a good idea as it give the user a sense that you care about them as an individual. It also suggested a sense of professionalism and it is much more likely the user will reply.

6. Sharing Interesting Content

Like any other social media platform content is king! One thing that has to be remembered whilst posting on LinkedIn is that it’s a professionals social platform so the content must be in keeping with this. Ask yourself every time before posting ‘would i want your boss to see this?’Great forms of content include news or blogs concerning your industry, general business news and top tips involving your industry. These forms of content are easy ways to generate engagement on your profile. Asking a question or asking for peoples opinion alongside the content can encourage users to get involved and comment on the post. Remember LinkedIn is full of strong business personalities it should be too hard to get opinion out of one or two of them.

By Thomas Parker

Beginners Guide To Social Media For Business

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How often do you hear about something “online”? Or how often do you look around to see somebody in the street or on the train on their phones networking their friends “online”? Now take a moment to realise the online world is physically nothing but yet it theoretically holds everything? Weird huh? And you question how your business can make an impact on just one of the billions of sites out there if you’re only just starting up? Well you can. So here’s just a couple tips to help you out.

You’re not going to get far if its all about you

If you’re only posting content about your own business and possibly yourself then consumers aren’t going to be willing to take time out of their day to read about you. Share other peoples content. By sharing other peoples content and showing interest then they will most likely be intrigued to know about what you do. This way you will build a brand and an audience who are more likely to trust you and your business.

Know your audience.

Lets face it, you wouldn’t go to France and try to speak fluent French, so why would you try to sell when you have no idea who its too? In other words you may as well be speaking a different language. You’ve got to make sure you know every spot of information you can, because you can’t expect to find an audience if you don’t know the product or service you’re offering. Therefore, you have to believe in it as much as you would expect somebody else too.

You can’t put all your eggs in one basket.

Just because you use Twitter does not mean you’re the next Alan Sugar. Yes, Twitter is a brilliant tool for creating new leads and is used every day to engage with customers and to even sell, BUT its just a fragment of the social media world. LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, jeez, the list is never ending! All offering the opportunity for you to create an impact and have your own say in the online social media world. So why limit yourself to just one or two? Jump on the bandwagon and make yourself known to everybody, it’s also great to be on the new and somewhat small social network platforms, because before you know it, it could blow up and be the next big thing, and if you’re on it from the start, you’re already making yourself look more credible.

BE ACTIVE.

You won’t make the magic happen by just sitting and waiting, you have to post, and regularly at that! You should be posting daily, on all of your profiles, even if the content is similar, as long as its relative and appropriate, you can’t really go wrong. But please do us all a favour and keep it concise, nobody wants to read for twenty minutes all about a toothpaste!

If you would like more free tips follow us on our LinkedIn company page.

By Georgia Tims

Setting Up An Account On Google+ For Business

Google+ is the second-largest social networking site in the world, having surpassed Twitter in January 2013. It is seen as Google’s “social layer” that integrates between their online services such as YouTube, GMail and Google Maps.

Google+ has 359 million active users and is tipped to the social platform to watch in 2014, this is a great time to establish your business on the platform and be ahead of the competition.

Here is some tips on how to set a page up for your business.

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If you would like more free tips follow us on our LinkedIn company page.

10 Questions To Ask Yourself Before You Start Your Social Media Strategy

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Social media is a growing sector on where you can really get in touch with your audience in an immediate and meaningful way but before you start using these platforms, here are 10 questions you should ask yourself before you start.

1. What should my company aim to achieve with social media?

The basis of any social media plan is to have a goal, 95% of businesses on social media do not have an end goal. The reason most businesses fail at social media is without a goal how do you measure the results? There are many aims you can have for your company from gaining exposure for your brand to more commerce, building and sticking to these goals is the basis of a successful social media campaign.

2. Who should set up and maintain my company’s social media accounts?

Would you let the intern go on radio or TV to be the spokesperson for your company? This should be an indication of who should be your spokesperson in the digital world, it depends on the size of your company but your social media platforms should be maintained by someone who knows the ins and outs of your company and industry.

3. Should my company have a presence on all of the popular social-media networks?

Unless you can produce consistent and meaningful content on a social platform then by all means be on as many networks as you can. Find the platforms that you get the most response on and focus on that by looking at your business and see what social media platforms are suited your audience.

4. What are the best social networks for small businesses?

Twitter is a very powerful platform to be on for any size company, it’s also a great place to feed content to and from other social media platforms. If your business needs a B2B presence then LinkedIn is the best network to focus on, Facebook is great to inform and engage consumers. Pinterest is the social platform for e-commerce and has a large female following and Google+ is a growing network which feeds into your search rankings.

5. How often should I post new content on my social networks?

Two to Five times a day is the recommended frequency to post across your social media platforms, this should be enough for your audience to see your message, staggering your posts throughout the day will also increase the chance of you audience seeing your message.

6. What types of content should I post on which social platforms?

Facebook, Pinterest, Google+ and Instagram are more visually based social networks so posts with pictures and videos are better suited to these while Twitter and LinkedIn to share and disseminate news. Make sure whatever you post is interesting and engaging to your audience as your goal should be to interact and add value to your brand.

7. Should I use social media to provide customer service?

Social media is a great way to get immediate feedback from your customers/clients, so providing customer service as a great way to use social media. If it becomes part of the conversation then make sure your company answers in a timely and informative manner even when it is criticisms.

8. How can I convert social-media followers into customers?

Trust, this is the main thing to remember when interacting on social media. If you can gain and retain trust from your audience, about your company they will be a higher likelihood of your social media followers becoming customers, it may sound counterintuitive but don’t try to sell on social media but try to add value to your audience and when the customer/client wants you product or services they will know it is from a trusted source.

9. How can I measure the success of my social-media marketing efforts?

A great measure of success should be if your social media campaign is aligned with your goals but remember the number of followers and likes are great but if there is no engagement with your audience this is for naught, interaction with your audience should be paramount.

10. What is the biggest mistake to avoid?

The biggest mistake in social media is not to be on social media, there is a conversation going on about your company or your sector so join in!

If you would like more free tips follow us on our LinkedIn company page

By Omar Johnson