Tag Archives: Twitter

Keeping the Words Fresh in a 24/7 World

Factoring in both personally and professionally, I wrote and posted over 6,000 updates on Facebook and Twitter in 2010. It’s hard to stay creative and interesting on a daily basis, week after week. I often fell short, but fortunately, I have cohorts to act as sounding boards to get me back on track.

I admit to a tiny bit of fear every time I write an update. What if I get crickets after I post a new update? Every time you create a tweet or post an update, it’s like throwing a party. You want people to show up. You’re playing the music, but sometimes, no one wants to dance. Worse, they don’t like your song choice. Like the host at a party, you sometimes struggle to keep the conversation lively and interesting. So what do you do to make sure you’re not a huge yawn to your guests? Throwing a lampshade on your head and doing the mambo is not an option–truly, not in the online world or real one.

After speaking to a few of my colleagues about what they do to keep their postings interesting, and ruminating over my own best practices, here’s a few power tips I’ve come up with from social media marketers, who, on a daily basis, numerous times a day, have to summon the muses.

1. Research is your best friend. One of the many reasons I like Hootsuite is because I get to organize my Twitter lists and see them all with a dashboard view. Let’s take one of my diamond industry clients, I’ve categorized the people they follow on Twitter into the following categories: Bridal, Jewelers, Fashion, Celebrity, Engagements. These are all shorthand terms that mean something to me. For example, take engagements. I have set up Twitter keywords to follow videos people post of proposals, whether they are funny or romantic. If a celeb gets engaged and it hits Twitter, it will show up in the stream for this list. In the celeb list, I have some intended redundancy to not only capture a newly announced engagement, but in case someone has posted a photo of a celeb wearing some jewelry that may be of interest to the members of the client’s Facebook page. Basically, Twitter is my research mine field for not only my tweets for this client, but for their Facebook page, too.
2. Write a weekly content schedule. Once a week, I sit down and create a schedule of what my weekly Facebook Page status updates will be. I do this for each and every client. It’s the best way to go over recent news and think about what to write about. To save time, I also collect ideas and info throughout the week so that I often have half the work already done.
3. Like any other writing, you have to write and rewrite. One of my clients once told me that he’s not satisfied with a press release unless it’s been edited at least nine times. I didn’t blink an eye. I get it. Every writer knows that writing is the fun part, but the editing is where goods words are sculpted into great ones. Right. I’m talking about Tweets, I know. While we’re not aiming for poetry, we do want to capture a conversational tone with a consistent voice, unique to each client. We also want those tweets to be interesting and fun. So tweak those tweets.
4. Mix it up. You are not writing a Dan Brown novel. There is not a tried and true formula for success. What works in your updates and tweets this week may get tiring after three weeks. So watch your sentence patterns, and mix up the topics a bit. Keep it lively and never, ever be satisfied with the status quo. Look for words that you use a lot and take a vacation from them. Make friends with words you don’t normally use—but, of course, be true to the voice of the brand.

Quick Twitter Tips

I have a confession to make: My Klout is not that great. I’m talking my Twitter Klout, of course. What other kind of klout is there?

When your Twitter Klout is pansy, there is only one thing to do. Tweet. A lot. You gotta tweet and retweet and reply and engage. You know, all that stuff I tell my clients to do and that thing I preach in my seminars? Yeah. I’m a Twit Hypocrite, or as it’s probably called in the Twitterverse, a Twypocrite.

I’ve learned a thing or two trying to get my Klout up: there are a lot of people making some pretty basic mistakes. Naturally, l laugh at them, because I’m insecure about my Klout and that’s what insecure people, or tweeple, do. But as I get ready for increased Klout, I need to be a better person (or, you got it: Twerson). So I’m going to share some key Twitter tips that I’ve learned.

1. Don’t Give a #FollowFriday recommendation to someone you do not follow. I’m stunned at how often this happens. If you want us to follow a person, you should follow them yourself.
2. If someone is graciously retweeting your tweets and replying to your tweets, follow them. It’s polite.
3. Don’t hit “reply” and respond to a tweet from hours ago unless you add some sort of reference to what you are saying. The Twitter stream turns over quickly, so that old tweet may not be the most recent a person has. We do not know what you mean when you say “LOL” and our last tweet was, “My cat died.”
4. If you want to retweet a fascinating tweet, but need to edit it to fit the character limit, use Hootsuite to edit down the tweet. Don’t change the meaning, just give the bare bones as needed. If it’s a heavily retweeted tweet, which credits a bunch of people, like “@Tweeple1, @Tweeple2 and @Tweeple3, always keep the original person’s name who retweeted it and delete the others.
5. You can also shrink links in Hootsuite, something you can’t do in basic twitter. Shrink the link and get more Characters. No, this is not a metaphor.

Tweet on, Klout-climbers.

Whole Foods’ Twitter Experiment

I love wine. I love Twitter. I love Whole Foods. My head almost exploded with happiness when I saw that Whole Foods was running a Twitter Wine Tasting. The detail that caught my eye though was exactly that, the detail of the details. Read how they are hosting it. It’s a great how-to manual for a Twitter event. Not only are they giving wine-loving tweeple something to tweet, they are giving marketers the blue print to having their own event. It’s a very well-thought out plan. Kudos, Whole Foods, and cheers.

Tricky Signatures

What do you do when you have a slew of social media addresses and want to include at least some of them on your email signature?

A few weeks ago, I received an email from a new client. I noticed his signature included a half dozen (or more) links to his social media sites.

At first, I thought this was great. I felt I had dropped the ball on this great tactic. It’s a simple way to let people know not only that you are connected online, but where they can connect with you, too. And if you are a social media marketer, which he was, it’s a crucial move.

So I went to my settings and loaded up my signature with my links. I was like a kid ripping through the gifts under the tree on Christmas morning. I went a little crazy. I had the standards, my website–I have two (watch where this goes)–then I put down my blog, my LinkedIn, my personal and business Twitter, my Delicious, my Slideshare . . .

It got crazy. If this actually had been Christmas, the floor would have been covered in torn wrapping paper. I would have been sitting cross-legged on the floor, panting and breathless from the frenzy.

I lived with this for a few days, but found myself deleting the addresses whenever I sent emails to friends or to clients who knew me well.

Then I modified it to what I felt were just the essentials. The problem is, as a social media nerd/marketer, they all seem essential to me. I felt bad enough I had left off my Foursquare, Gowalla, Plaxo, Squidoo and Tumblr addresses. Like anyone else, I didn’t care so much about the Friendster, My Space, and there was no way I was going to put down my Facebook address–like everyone else, I have enough strangers trying to friend me as it is.

So then I had an epiphany. What do I really want people to see? You’d think the two websites would be an obvious, but while they are both business, one is really about my career highlights, the other is for business. I realized, also, that who I send those addresses to depends on what context we are doing business. Plus the business website really isn’t ready so . . . I deleted all of my email signatures except for two: the blog and my LinkedIn, which has everything any prospective client or reporter needs to see.

It may be a short-sighted move, but I no longer cringe when I see my signature, feeling like I look like the poster girl for a social media nerd club. I also don’t feel the need to delete it whenever I send emails to friends. What links do you include in your email signatures? It’s worth reviewing, but don’t go crazy like me.

Mad Men’s Old School vs. New School Power Scene

I’ve been thinking all week about a scene in Mad Men’s last episode: at the end, hip-chick copywriter Peggy goes out into the lobby to meet her hipster pals who have come to take her to lunch. Peter, Roger, Don et al are in the lobby, ready to wheel and deal with some clients from Vicks. The hipsters are just outside the glass lobby wall; the old school is inside. I reserve the phrase “breathtaking” for Bruce Springsteen concerts, but this was a breathtaking moment in TV. It was Show, Don’t Tell at its finest. The hipsters, or the new school (for that time) were at the gates, and they were on the brink of invading, as the old school, as they are apt to do, didn’t notice.

It reminds me of an elderly executive I worked with a few years ago, who told me that Web 2.0 was over-rated, and that social media would be a passing fad. He was laid off about a two years ago, and has been unable to find a job since. His skills are of the Mad Men variety, and no doubt, in his hey day, he was a bright shining star. Unfortunately, he didn’t grow and adapt his skills to the market, and worse, he was obstinate about any new marketing change, preferring instead, to strictly adhering to the basic 4Ps of marketing–which have grown to 7ps to include People, Process and Physical Evidence.

People refers to, in a vague way, the social networks. Marketing used to be about you and your customer, but now it’s about you, your employees, the media, the customers–and a whole myriad of people. The opportunity is that you have forums to provide rich messages that delivers more value to your customers.

Process is really all about relationship building. It’s the added value–the experience. Think about your day spa. They probably offer you cool water with lemon slices or mint in a beautiful glass. Somehow the water at my spa is just better than when I try to do the same cocktail at home. When I make an appointment at the spa, I look forward to going, for little reasons just like that. It’s part of the process.

Physical Evidence refers to what a customer sees and knows about your brand before they are ever a customer. I have never owned a Rolls Royce. I’d like to own one, because it’s a big, lumbering, fancy car with nice-smelling leather. Call that my physical evidence of the brand. If I go to a Rolls Royce dealer with a wad of cash to buy the car, they will treat me like I’m the Queen of England. That will be my new physical Evidence of the brand.

Like any respectable Mad Men crazed fan, I love Don Draper. It’s interesting to see the barbarians approaching the gate, though, and the ways they are going to rock his world. I think often about the senior executive I once knew, and how I’d like to connect with him and talk about the show, to see what he thinks. Hmmm, if only he were on Facebook or Twitter. . .

Addicted to HootSuite

Hello. My name is “Audacious I” and I’m addicted to HootSuite.

This is your cue. You say, “Hello Audacious I.”

My God, is there a rehab for people like me? The last thought I had before I drifted off into dreamland last night was HootSuite. I then dreamed that an owl with a larger -than-usual head flew through the window and lifted me away to a giant HootSuite dashboard, where I managed all my client accounts with my feet, like the scene with Tom Hanks in “Big” at the FAO Schwartz. I have a problem, folks. I am in love with an app. It’s a disease.

HootSuite has made my life easier, and like most things designed to make your life easier, it has–in ways–taken up more time because I’m always on HootSuite. I feel like a deity with a little “g,” a god of social media management tools. At one glance, I can see who is mentioning my clients in Tweets, who has sent a direct message, who is tweeting what in the different category lists I’ve set up: Bridal, Luxury, Photographers, Trends, etc. It’s too wonderful. I can schedule Tweets and then walk away from my computer (but I never do). I can manage the previously hot mess of my massive Twitter stream.

I can even manage Facebook pages from the HootSuite Dashboard.

No, they are not paying me for this. It’s true love. It’s a true endorsement. Dare I ask this, if you find something you think is even better than HootSuite (and don’t say, “Getting a life”) let me know.

Hearts On Fire Launches Facebook Promotion to Celebrate Life’s Perfect Moments

Yesterday, one of my clients, Hearts On Fire, launched The Perfect Moment, a photo contest that will take place exclusively on Facebook. You might say I’m biased, and I am, but nonetheless, this is a very unique contest worth talking about. To be clear, the idea was not mine; file it under “Things I wish I had thought of,” along with a search engine named Google, an online auction named eBay and an online book + everything retailer named Amazon.

Hearts On Fire has long associated their brand with celebrating love and the emotion that diamonds symbolize. It’s fitting, then, that they would create a promotion that ties into that, be it a romantic moment, a night out with your friends, capturing your child in her own perfect moment, or if you are me, snapping endless photos of your Boston Terrier. As a marketer, I see it as a way to extend the brand and really connect with your community on a deeper level. As a lover of sparkling things, I wish I were eligible to enter. I’m not, but you are so please check it out. Here’s some excerpts from the release, with details on how to enter:

Any Facebook user can enter the contest simply by posting a photo that best captures one of life’s perfect moments. Users can share their entry and vote for their favorite photos today through June 20th. The winning entry will receive Hearts On Fire diamond jewelry valued at up to $10,000 retail.

“The Perfect Moment is about recognizing and appreciating the meaningful moments in life, both big and small”, said Caryl Capeci, Marketing VP at Hearts On Fire. “It can be the perfect golf swing, the perfect bucket of popcorn at a great movie or that perfect smile on your baby’s face”. Fans are asked to capture these special moments on their phone as they happen and share them with the Hearts On Fire Facebook community. “Encourage your Facebook friends to vote for your photo, and you could be wearing the World’s Most Perfectly Cut Diamond”, says Capeci.

Enter the contest and find all details here.

Click here to learn more about Hearts On Fire. You can also follow them on Twitter.

Keeping Score of Your Social Media Success

I am fortunate to have kind clients. I’m not saying it’s always puppy dog kisses, but when they are happy, they let me know. When they are unhappy, I think they let me know, too. Notice I said, “Think.” I seriously doubt they tell me every single time they are unhappy, mainly because they probably weigh each situation and chose to let me know the big stuff.

If you are a marketer, and feel you are not getting the whole picture from your client or boss, seek it out, especially when it comes to social media. The whole social media arena is still a new marketing tool. We are the scientists beta testing the prototypes. Trial and error is sometimes the order of the day; and with that comes experimentation and tweaking. It’s like cleaning out your refrigerator: keep the good, throw out the bad.

If you are running a Twitter or Facebook fan page, create a spreadsheet with a calendar for each week. Write in your ideas for content. Then at the end of the week, go back and check how the content did after it was posted. Which post got the most interactions? Which was on-target for your market? The most original or unique? Did they add value to your community? Of course with that last question, you want to ask it before you even post it, but hindsight may show you that what you thought would add value, didn’t.

Social media is a forum for risk-taking. Don’t be crazy; use your judgement, but do experiment. It’s a way to let your creativity flourish, and show your company and brand in a different, more human light. As always, have some fun.

Marketing 0.0; or Why Old School Still Works

Ad Week posted this article today on men in chicken suits, and why sometimes, the old school techniques can work, given the right environment and message. It’s like any other marketing campaign: analyze the market, determine the message, and figure out the most cost effective–and effective–way to implement it all. Sometimes, you just have to kick it old school.

Take that, Twitter.

How Not To Be Annoying on Twitter, and How Twitter Can Annoy You

Recent Audacious Ink posts have focused on Facebook, so let’s show Twitter some attention for a change. Here’s a useful story from Open Forum on 5 Ways Not to Be Annoying On Twitter.

One of the points Open Forum makes is “Don’t Disappear.” They use the analogy of a gym membership. You join a gym, go for the first week in January, and then . . . crickets. Your thighs get larger and strangers start screaming at you on the street. Okay, the article doesn’t go into all that, but you get the idea. When you start promoting your company and brand on Twitter, keep it up. If you are consistent, you will build a following and if the content is engaging, people will respond.

I will confess though to being more of a fan of Facebook pages than Twitter. I think Twitter serves a purpose and is a good companion to a Fan Page (especially if you have your updates linked in to each other) but all-in-all, you get more quality interaction from Facebook. If you disagree and have some great examples of how you feel Twitter surpasses Facebook for old-fashion engagement and community building, let me know. I feel that the Twitter stream is too vast. If you have a few hundred followers, it only takes a few seconds for your Tweet to move in and out of the stream. Therefore, your message may be lost. Because people don’t usually amass as many connections on Facebook as they do Twitter (again, it’s more about quality than quantity) it is easier to see the updates.

Even if you are consistent with your tweets, you still may get missed, which means that to in order to build a presence, you need to be not only consistent, but frequent. Please, don’t start tweeting on the hour, but daily tweets are usually in order, and if you have the luxury of time and manpower, you may have to make that daily tweets a couple times a day. With Facebook you can relax a little. It usually takes 24 hours to get completely out of the newsfeed.