Conversation Builds Your Network

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Having conversations, being present, and engaging on social media are more important than Follower count and are the keys to success.  Tweetchats are a fantastic way to find great people to have these conversations with; this blog will discuss some of my favorite tweetchats.  Please give them a look, jump into a conversation, and build your network.

#ContentChat – Monday 3-4 pm EST hosted by Erika Heald @SFerika: This chat brings together content creators and content marketers to share their challenges and best practices for solving them.

#BufferChat – Wednesday 12-1 pm EST hosted by Buffer @buffer: Join this chat to discuss social strategy, platforms, and growing your audience.

#SproutChat – Wednesday 3-4 pm EST hosted by Sprout Social @SproutSocial and Vera Flores @sproutvera: Discussions around relevant topics and challenges that social media and community managers face.

#TwitterSmarter – Thursday 1-2 pm EST hosted by Madalyn Sklar @MadalynSklar: As the name suggests, this chat is about all things Twitter and Twitter marketing.

#HootChat – Thursday 3-4 pm EST hosted by Hootsuite @hootsuite: From tools, to strategy, and best practices – all things social media.

I participate in these chats because they are hosted and attended by knowledgeable people and relevant to my career.  If these do not interest you, don’t worry, there are many chats out there; do some research and find those that do.  No matter which one you choose, I recommend using TweetChat to follow and participate.  Hope to chat with you soon; I look forward to your comments and questions.

Best,

Toby

 

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#SproutChat: Manage & Amplify Social Media Content

Sproutchat

Good day community managers and social pros, this is my recap and answers I provided for the 10/25/2017 #SproutChat hosted by Rachael Samuels @RachaelSamuels  Join the conversation every Wednesday at 3pm EST.

Q1: What are some best practices for managing multimedia content for social media?

  • Ensure the content is sized and formatted to match each social media outlet
  • Build a library of content used
  • Use the right platform to reach the right audience
  • ALWAYS give credit to the content’s creator if it is not you or your firm

Q2: How do you manage visual content when you’re at a live event with a team? Or on the go?

  • Smartphone
  • Livestream
  • If I am going to attend a show, I let my audience know prior and what hashtag to follow
  • LiveTweet with pictures of yourself (and customers or fellow employees)
  • Ensure you enable geolocation and tag your location when on the go

Q3: What are ways that you can ensure that there isn’t crossover in posting if multiple people have access?

  • Have a plan with responsibilities
  • A social calendar keeps everyone organized: who does what, when
  • Scheduling posts through one dashboard gives visibility and helps prevent duplication

Q4: How do you organize or tag multimedia content for easy lookup?

  • Use the same hashtag as the event it covers
  • Hootsuite allows you to create a content library and you can catalog it there
  • Ensure the tag for the content matches utm code so you can easily track its success via Google Analytics

Q5: Share some best practices for sharing repurposed content for brands.

  • Ensure the content is important to your audience; not just you
  • Ensure the content tells a story

Q6: How do you amplify content among employees or advocates?

  • LinkedIn Elevate is a great way to share content internally
  • Feature customer created community content in Twitter feeds
  • I always let the employee or customers know I am going to feature them
  • Ask employees or customers to lead a discussion in your community
  • Ask employees or customers for content they would like to see on your Instagram
  • Feature customer Tweets or Instagram posts on your account

If you work in social media, #SproutChat is a must attend.  I hope to see you there and welcome your comments.

Cheers,

Toby

 

Twitter is a Community

Illustration of social people network community

Online communities are still misunderstood: people narrowly define them by network or platform in which they live rather than the conversations themselves.  A company’s support community, a LinkedIn or Facebook group, are obvious communities, but Community is more than location: communities are places where people meet to discuss common interests, share knowledge, and help others with their problems.

Twitter is my favorite social network and is teeming with communities.

  1. Lists help me organize people by what I learn from them.   For example, I can open my list of Community Mangers to see what they are taking about – within this community, I can search for answers, ask a question to a specific person, and answer a question someone else may have asked.  This link will take you to my Twitter lists by topic: https://twitter.com/Toby_Metcalf/lists
  2. Tweetchats are weekly discussions that focus on specific topics.  I join these to listen to and network with thought leaders and judge the success of the chat by the amount of side conversations I have going.  I have made some of my strongest and most helpful networks through tweetchats.  Some of my favorites are: #Custserv #Bufferchat #Sproutchat #Twittersmarter #Hootchat – I hope to see you there.

No matter the platform, it is the people and the conversations within the platform that makes the community.  Please let me know if you have questions about Twitter or Tweetchats.

Best,

Toby

#TwitterSmarter: Mastering Real-Time Content Curation with Twitter

My recap and answers I have provided for the 9/28/2017 #TwitterSmarter chat hosted by @MadalynSklar and guest @Ross_Quintana.  Join the conversation every Thursday at 1pm EST.

twittersmarter

Q1: What Makes Twitter Important as a Social Platform for Brands?

  • Twitter makes it easy to find and connect with thought leaders & customers
  • Twitter will aid with SEO and drive traffic to your site or community
  • lists & a dashboard makes is so easy to socially listen and engage

Q2: How has Content Curation Evolved on Twitter?

  • You only have 140: be efficient, use graphics or video, & URLs with utm codes
  • Using lists makes it easy to send the right content to the right audience

Q3: Why does the Real-time Nature of Twitter Matter to Your Content Strategy?

  • Real time is great when attending conferences and trade shows – helps create a buzz
  • Twitter makes it easy to engage with customers when they reach out to you

Q4: What are Many Businesses Failing on Twitter and Why?

  • Business fails on twitter: 1) Too much brand talk 2) Not engaging customers 3) Not relevant tweets
  • Twitter fails: 1) Not measuring via utm codes 2) Tweeting too often 3) Arguing in public
  • Not using pictures, graphics, or video in tweets

Q5: What Types of Content Should I Curate and What Format Works Best?

  • Depends on your audience. For example, a B2B – best practices & how-to’s can work best
  • If you are a restaurant: what are your daily specials? Include pictures
  • Experiment and measure – keep what works, change what is not

Q6: What is Anchor Content and How Can I Use It?

  • Anchor Content = a custom url with your brand name in it
  • Anchor content is your brand’s tweeting backbone – what will help your customer / audience the most

Q7: How Much Self-promotion Should I Do and What are the Best Ways to Do It?

  • Brands do need to promote & show thought leadership, but 70% should be customer-centric
  • Write a blog with a customer who uses your product – about you, but with a trusted endorsement
  • If you are providing trusted, customer valued content, THEY will promote it for you

Q8: How Can I Optimize My Content Curation Efforts and Be Data-Driven?

  • Add utm codes to your url and let Google Analytics tell the story

If #Twitter is part of your business, and it better be, please join #twittersmarter to interact with fellow professionals and learn some great Twitter tips.  I look forward to your questions and comments.

Best,

Toby

#TwitterSmarter: Manage Your Productivity and Time on Twitter

My recap and answers I have provided for the 9/1542017 #TwitterSmarter chat hosted by @MadalynSklar and guest @WriteOnLinline.  Join the conversation every Thursday at 1pm EST.

twittersmarter

Q1: How important is setting time for content creation, blogging and networking on Social Media, including Twitter?

  • A social calendar is priority one – too much is going on during the day to “wing it”
  • Setting times for content creation and publishing must be build into your content / social media strategy

Q2: What are steps to consider when setting goals for your Twitter activities (content creation, promotion, engagement)?

  • What % is Twitter in your overall plan? Is it the top, do you also manage a community?
  • How are you using Twitter? Social listening, customer service, blog / community promotion
  • How are you managing twitter – Hootsuite, Sprout, TweetDeck – How many on your team
  • What is your triage plan for questions

Q3: What are your best tips for managing your time on Twitter and staying on top of your Social efforts?

  • Build dashboards () from your lists
  • Set notifications

Q4: How can you build a Twitter Strategy that maximizes your efforts, your time and drives results?

  • Ensure you are measuring your efforts to know what works, what needs to be improved. UTM codes – Google Analytics

Q5: What are some tools that can help you manage your time and be productive on Twitter?

Q6: What are your favorite hacks to stay committed to keep consistent with execution and engagement on Twitter?

  • Twitter lists of people by specialty.
  • Social done well is about engagement and building trust, not something you “do.”
  • Define success and measure your efforts
  • Tweetchats

Q7: What are some simple techniques to balance real-time conversations and scheduling?

  • I have never use auto tweets are replies – respond and make it personal
  • Be authentic and share who you are
  • Balance scheduled content with real-time interactions
  • Balance personal content with 3rd party content

Q8: What’s your advice for anyone who’s starting out with Twitter & finds it challenging to be productive on a daily basis?

  • Don’t try to read everything in your feed
  • Ask a few questions and remember to thank people for their answers
  • Join a tweetchat and network
  • Lists and dashboards help you organize, consume, and respond

If Twitter is part of your business, and it better be, please join #twittersmarter to interact with fellow professionals and learn some great Twitter tips.  I look forward to your questions and comments.

Best,

Toby

 

#Bufferchat: Social Media Analytics

Buffer

My recap of the 3/15/2017 #Bufferchat hosted by @buffer and @RivallQ.  Join the conversation every Wednesday at 12pm EST.

Let’s kick off with an icebreaker! If you’d like, share where you’re tweeting from… & where you wish you were tweeting from!

Icebreaker: Tweeting from Needham MA – I am the – would love to visit Australia (it’s summer there now)

Q1: Why track and measure social media analytics?

  • You cannot improve what you are not measuring
  • Analytics help you report the success of your efforts up the management chain
  • Analytics help you identify the content your customers love (and my not like so much)

Q2: If you could only pick one social media metric to capture, what would it be and why?

  • The ideal metric will depend on the Social Tool you are using
  • For Twitter: time on site – shows you directed them to content they like
  • For my community: questions asked – As this number increases, it shows my community is trusted by my customers
  • No matter a Social Media campaign or a Tweetchat – engagement is the Key

Q3: What tools work well for capturing analytics across your social media platforms?

Q4: How often do you (or should you) analyze your social media data?

  • Monthly, Quarterly, Annually
  • It can depend on the campaign: email, social, blogging, etc
  • Remember to compare year over year – how did you move the needle?

Q5: Have you ever made a big shift in your social media strategy because of analyzing data?

  • Have not made a major shift – thankfully small tweaks have made the difference
  • Always testing hashtags and content types

Q6: Where are the best resources for better understanding social media analytics?

  • tweetchats (like this one)
  • I would like to learn the best resources, but there are some easily sourced content via Google search
  • I network with other Community Managers – we trade best practices

Q7: If you could wave a magic wand and have any analytics feature you wanted, what would it be?

  • I would wish for the one perfect tool: easy to use, digs deep into the network, creates solid dashboards

Thanks for reading – I look forward to you comments and hope to see you at the next #bufferchat.

Cheers,

Toby

Employee and Brand Advocacy

Launch-Brand-Advocate-Program-01-1

Word of mouth marketing is potentially the most effective driver in a consumer’s purchase decision. Brands are figuring out ways to tap into the communities of happy employees and satisfied customers by encouraging advocacy.  This is my recap of the 1/20 #SproutChat hosted by @SproutSocial & @sprout_sarah

Q1: What is the potential impact that dedicated brand or employee advocates can have on an organization?

  • Increased customer awareness and trust
  • Before they are advocates, ensure the know your message and know how to engage
  • Make sure to build trust by having conversations and not just pushing contnet
  • Too much employee and company generated content can actually hurt you

Q2: What are the key components in setting up an advocacy program for success? And how do you measure success?

  • Your online community is the best place to start – Measure new visitors, members, question volume growth, answer rate
  • Ensure you have a clear message, and MANAGEMENT who live it
  • Encourage employees to blog
  • Encourage employee participation within your online community
  • Encourage employees to participate in tweetchats

Q3: Is it necessary to incentivize individuals for advocacy to happen?

  • Rather than trinkets, explain why you need their help
  • Trinkets are false thanks – tell them the goal & make them part of their process – collect their feedback
  • Employees want to know how they are contributing, show them why their participation matters (and thank them)

Q4: What are some potential negatives around employee or brand advocacy?

  • Talking only about the brand and not providing customer-centric content
  • Employee advocates “defend” the brand online – let it go
  • Too much fluff content devalues the message
  • The over-share of company info: Things not made public yet get accidentally communicated

Q5: Is it always necessary for advocates to publicly disclose any relation with an organization? Legally or morally?

  • ALWAYS disclose you are an employee
  • Transparency = trust

#SproutChat takes place every Wed at 3pm EST – stop by and join the conversation.

Cheers,

Toby