Social Media

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Phil Aston’s Three Rules For Content Marketing on Social Media

My three rules for content marketing on Social Media

  1. Does it help?
  2. Will it make people smile?
  3. Will it inspire?
If you are unsure – don’t postThese are the three rules I use for all my social media posts for myself and my clients.
If I was to expand on this it would be on point number 1, to also ensure that what you are going to post not only helps but does not cause harm to anyone.

Phil Aston
Genius Loci Media

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How Social Media Can Drive Social Mobility

This is a video chat I did with Timothy Hughes from Digital Leadership Associates

During the video I talk about our move to Cornwall, with no job, no way of supporting ourselves and only 9 months of money.

It is a story about perseverance and the power of Social Media.

I talk about my journey as well as how anybody (from wherever background) can start and run a global company using social media.

Phil

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You Don’t Need To Be Authentic – You Just Need to Be Yourself

(Video Duration 2.28 mins – Transcript Below)

I saw a video today about telling everyone to be authentic with their business.

There’s a lot of this about now and I think the word authentic has been around,
since Google Plus was, everyone’s saying how important it is to be yourself.

I want to go a bit further than that and actually say, be nice. Be nice to people.
Think about the words you are going to use on social media, about do they help?

Will they make somebody smile? They’re not going to make anyone feel worse,
or upset somebody or make them feel insecure about anything?

That to me, is the baseline of what you should be doing on social media.
As Metallica would say ‘Nothing else really matters’.

I think one of the problems I see with anything to do with marketing,
is all these lead generation stuff, and if you do this, people will buy your stuff,
and if you do this, people will enter your sales funnel or something.

They’re all things that you yourself probably wouldn’t do,
because you’d think “Oh, I’m not going to do that.” The people you’re doing that to are you.
They’re just like you. So if you wouldn’t fall for it, why do you think someone else will?

I think the whole point of social media or online marketing really is not just being authentic,
you’ve just got to be yourself, so you’re going to be authentic anyway.

I think if you’re looking for someone else to tell you how to be authentic,
I think you’re a bit lost. And no one else can teach you this,
because they’re trying to teach you how to be you. You are already that person.

Be nice, and I know people think the word nice doesn’t sound strong enough, it is.
Empathy, connecting with people is Social Media.
Social media’s going to go through some massive changes soon,
and a lot of people are going to start to probably question how much time they spend here,
so it’s about connections, it’s about taking care of the people you connect with,
and listening to them

Thinking how you can help people, how you can learn from people,
how you can create things that help others.

That is social media and that is running a business online.

Thank you

Phil

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

The Day I Deleted Ten Thousand Followers on Twitter

The last few days I’ve done something which might be seen to be a bit mad on social media. On Twitter, I’ve stopped following thousands and thousands of accounts. And I’ve also done that for Sue as well.
Now this might be seen as an absolutely crazy thing to do. Both of us have got accounts which have thousands and thousands of followers so why would we get rid of so many of them?

I just felt that in 2019 our social media activity should be about being ourselves, being authentic, having our own voice. And although on Twitter you can use lists so that you can make sure that what you look at looks sensible. Why should you have to do that?

When I look at my news feed on Twitter it was just crazy, there’s tens of thousands of accounts in there and I have no connection to them apart from the fact that I follow them and they follow me back. I don’t interact with them, I don’t get work from them, so what is the point? And many of those accounts just retweet other people’s tweets with no explanation of why they’re doing it, or any added perspective, they just retweet everything.
So I see multiple things multiple times. So I’ve made the decision to almost start again.

So I’ve unfollowed thousands of accounts, yes, I have had some feedback from people saying, I am a bot, and I’ve just got to a certain point and now I’ve decided just to unfollow everyone. I haven’t, it has taken hours / days to do this, and if people interact with me, then I’ll follow them back. But I think you shouldn’t have a news feed that you’re scared to look at.

I see a lot of successful (or so-called successful Twitter accounts) which have 100,000 followers and they follow 100,000 back and you think, where is the fun in that? What do they get out of that?

So, I’m not going down that route. So, this is an experiment and I shall report back on how things go. But at the moment, it’s early days, but my news feed is great again, I’m seeing people I haven’t seen for years. I’m seeing people I care about and I’m interacting with them and it feels absolutely fantastic so, that’s my thing for 2019 social media it’s having your own voice and not whispering behind someone else’s louder voice.

Phil Aston

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Facebook Announces Record Profits – But Are Habits Changing?

Facebook 2019

For a company in a so-called crisis, Facebook has just announced record profits.

It has seen revenue soar to $16.91 billion, with year on year growth of 30.4 per cent.
The net income of $6.88 billion for the quarter was Facebook’s best ever result.

Even with all the news of people leaving Facebook they have still increased users around the world.

In Europe, user numbers crept up from 377 Million to 381 million. This pales in comparison to the jump from 873 million to 947 million in Asia / Pacific.

However, to maintain this growth and profitability it depends on people sharing more stuff and being able to access that data for its advertisers.
This is where a change of habit is emerging which could threaten this growth.

How many of you now share photos and news via a messenger app?

In the Aston household we tend to do this more and for other groups of people, we have messenger groups so we can keep up to date but don’t share it on Facebook for all the world to see.

We are not alone and more and more people are taking their activity off facebook and communicating via messenger apps. You can see why Facebook want to combine What’s App, Messenger and Instagram Messages.

However, the biggest threat is from iMessage and the iPhone with more people avoiding Facebook altogether using Apple software.

This is a problem for Facebook as this kind of sharing, where we talk about family, restaurants, life events etc is a valuable source of Ad targeting data.

A Question To You

Are you finding yourself sharing more content via messenger Apps that you used to?

Thanks
Phil

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Internet Marketing Has Changed Forever

 

Once upon a time, Your online business was your website. Now your website is part of your online business.

Here is a recent question I received from a potential client:

I want more traffic to my website, I understand you do SEO? I don’t really do Social so just want more organic visitors – thanks (client enquiry).

This question is not as uncommon as you might think so it is important to realise how the world of internet marketing has changed and how we got here.

SEO

I started in SEO in 1998. Back then it was an exciting field to be in because you could see the results of your work within hours.

Having your own website in the late 90s was quite new and web developers were seen as wizards (or webmasters at the very least).

A few changes to the title tag and keywords and you could be number one in Google within 24 hours.

Also, there were NO social media channels, internet connections were dial-up so no one watched a video and all your traffic came from search.

Social Media

Social Media arrived in 2006 but it took the next 5 years to really gain momentum. I remember being in a meeting with a very large and successful hotel and them saying ‘ Why would anyone want to be friends with a hotel?’ Also, the idea of looking at a website on your phone seemed ridiculous.

During the first years of social media, people liked pages very quickly and building a following was fairly easy and quick. This is no longer the case.

Google Ads / Facebook Ads

For a long time people ignored this, organic search and getting people to click on your links from social media seemed the way to go.

However, as every market became crowded, if you wanted to get in front of people’s eyes you needed to advertise.

In fact, on Facebook with exposure to your own following being down to less than 2% – advertising is the only real way to grow your business.

Mobile

Who could have imagined a world where everyone is on their mobile devices at work, home or out with friends? If you look at what they are doing most of them are not searching on google but communicating via social media and message apps. They are sharing their lives and interests with people they have never met.

Video

That same mobile device is now a movie camera able to stream live and share memories and thoughts with anyone in the world. Video is also the biggest growth area for consuming content.

Internet Marketing Has Changed

Back in 1998 the internet was still new, going online was exciting. People would wait for info to load because it was a new experience.

Now in late 2018, it’s not new, for many it has speeded up life beyond recognition. People are less patient, get irritated more easily and share their thoughts whether negative or positive with potentially 1000s of people.

Once upon a time, your online business was your website. Now your website is part of your online business.

Your business now also has a facebook page, twitter account, YouTube channel and Linkedin. You might also have a facebook group or other online communities. You are also available via business listings and message apps.

In fact, some clients now find you via social media and conduct all their business/communications with you without even visiting your website.

So just wanting SEO on your website is not going to cut it.

Coming Out From Behind Your Logo

In ’98 you could remain mysterious and hide behind your logo with a PO Box number. Now people what to know who you are and get in touch with you as a person. This is where video and appearing in front of the camera is so important.

Nothing builds trust faster than video and being real. So no super slick video,  just you in front of your camera can be enough.

SEO On Its Own Does Not Cut It Anymore

So to answer my client enquiry, I do offer SEO, but only now as part of an integrated approach using all the disciplines mentioned above. So your website and landing pages need to be ready as do your social channels and the targeted Ads you run on them.

You also need to be consistent, so a few days of scheduled social media posts and then nothing, because you are too busy, is not going to work either.

Get Back To What You Do Best

People come to me now because they cannot keep up with all the activities they need to do to market their business online. Plus nothing stands still and many times I have to delete a methodology because a platform or algorithm has changed.

I can do this in a moment because it’s what I do. The number of clients I have helped out after damaging their business from outdated information is huge.

My World Has Changed As Well

Back when I started there were not many people doing SEO or social media (when it started to emerge). Now the digital landscape is awash with agencies and digital marketing people. I have seen many vanish as well especially when their business was built on a specific aspect of SEO or a social platform.

I have been doing this for a long time and have a wealth of experience in what works and what does not. I will explain in plain English what you need to do and if it will actually help your business grow.

If you want any help with online marketing please get in touch. We will work with you as part of your team and take away any worry that you’re missing out or getting left behind in your marketplace.

Follow the link for more information – SEO Search Engine Optimisation with Phil Aston 

Phil Aston

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

How Do You Get Started With Video?

So how do you start a video marketing campaign?
In fact, how do you even start doing video at all?

Do you have to get the right camera?
The best lighting?
Do you need a posh microphone?
Do you need more tech – perhaps a script?
What about what to wear or where you are?

The main thing you have to do is just start.
Just start by getting in front of a camera.

Like I am doing now in this video, I am simply in front of my phone. Simply talking on my phone.
Yes, I could have shaved a bit closer, my hair is not exactly tidy and I am not holding the phone as still as I could.
But does it really matter?

Somebody might criticise it and say it could be more professional. But does this really matter?

If I worry about what other people think all the time then it might prevent me from putting this content out there,
so stopping people from finding me and what I do.

The thing is with video is just to start and have a go.
Simply start recording, say something and don’t worry about ‘what have I got to say that’s special’ you have your own story to tell. Even if you provide the same services as someone down the road. The way you do it is your way.
It will be different, your experiences will be different and
your message and delivery will be yours.

So just have a go, start today, make a video.
It doesn’t have to be long.
Then put it out there and do it again and again and again.

Have fun.

Phil Aston
Genius Loci Media
www.geniusloci.co.uk

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Facebook to Allow Music in Video Uploads


This is great news – Many people will have noticed that Facebook will take down or even prevent videos being uploaded if it detects copyrighted music in a video.

This has affected everyone from commercial video producers and aspiring musicians who might have simply recorded a cover version of their favourite song in their bedroom.

Well not any more. After making deals with record labels and many indies, you can now do this. The other incentive for Facebook has been the growth in the social media platform Musical.ly. This is very popular with teenagers as somewhere they can record themselves miming to popular hits.

Facebook is going to struggle making itself hip with younger teenagers but I feel Musical.ly should worry. For everyone else, video just got more engaging.

Phil Aston

Read More – https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/05/facebook-lip-sync-live/

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

On Social Media, who should you be on each platform?

This is a question I got asked this morning and the answer is not as obvious as you think.

Let’s think about your website first of all. Your website is more corporate, It has your ‘about page’, your services, your products, your offers, latest news etc. It’s official, it is stating facts for people who find you and telling them how to contact you.  Your Blog is again information but it can be a bit less formal.

With Social Media, the key is in the word ‘Social’.

Facebook
Your Facebook page is less corporate than your website. So it is more chatty and friendly. So you do not just broadcast ‘we have this product at this price’ type of post. It is better to ask questions and interact with people.

Twitter
This is for news. It is like the social media version of busking. So if you have an offer or late availability, put it on Twitter with a couple of key hashtags.

Instagram
I like to see this as more behind the scenes. What people tend to do is get the same photos and put them on every platform. The thing is if you put stock photos on Instagram, you will get very little engagement. This is because the Instagram community expects all the images and videos to be from you – you did not just download them from another source.

For example, let’s say you are doing a short video for a new blog post or offer. You could show behinds the scenes photos from the shoot which are quite informal. Perhaps include these in your Instagram Story. This gives a chance for people to get to know you.
Then when the official video goes out via your website on YouTube you can have different edits/text for Facebook and Twitter and you have included your audience in the whole process.

So do not put the same thing on every platform. Think about each audience. Even if you have the same followers on each platform they are going to get a different aspect of who you are, as a person, or your brand.

Thank you.

Phil Aston

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Facebook Data Breach – Twitter Changes – Social Media in the news

Social Media is in the news, but not necessarily in the way it thought it would be. The recent news about the Data breach on Facebook is not helping Facebook or Social Media as a whole.  I imagine it is also making some Social Media Agencies a little nervous. Prior to this happening, we have also seen Twitter announcing it is not going to allow scheduled or bulk posting and it is all about being real and authentic.  I can also see this making some agencies worry as well.

Personally, I am not worried about this at all.  My background is in Marketing and SEO.  I started in SEO in 1998.  it was so easy back then. You could get people on the first page of Google for almost anything. As the years rolled by, lots of SEO Agencies sprang up and the whole focus seemed to be about gaming the system, whatever tricks could be applied were.  The biggest subject seemed to be Link Building.  Many people will remember being cold called from an SEO agency promising to build hundreds of backlinks with the idea this would increase your organic rankings and get you in front of the competition.

Then not that long ago Google introduced the Panda and Penguin Algorithm updates. Almost overnight it seemed like a lot of SEO Agencies just vanished. All of a sudden all of those agencies that employed dozens of Link Builders were being told it’s not about backlinks anymore it’s about content and they couldn’t do content.  This saw a lot of those agencies disappear.

The position we are now is similar to with some Social Media Agencies using automated software to build audiences, bulk following, unfollowing, multiple shared posts (using the same content). Some Agencies even use multiple accounts to share a client post, this games the system in making a hashtag seem to trend.  Even some influencer accounts have been shown up to made up of mainly false followers or bots.  All of this is coming to an end with the recent announcements in Twitter and the recent algorithm changes at Facebook where some businesses have seen their audiences fall off a cliff.

On Twitter, I have seen hundreds of accounts get suspended or blocked for using unethical practices. A lot of this seems to be coming from Social Media Agencies or related software.

So it is is a similar thing in a way and Social Media Agencies need to wise up and focus more on Marketing.

I am not worried because here at Genius Loci we have never used any of these practices. Our SEO practices have always been about content and always about the website user. It’s always been about increasing traffic and making the phone ring.   Social Media has always been about telling a story as authentically as we can, using a clients content and producing posts that fit in which their company culture and tone of voice.

So we are ready for the future and have been around a long time.  We started in 1998 and moved to Cornwall in 2004, so we have seen many things come along and pass.  Our strength is in the fact that we are specialists in SEO, WordPress, Hosting, Social Media, PPC and have the agility and flexibility to wipe the slate clean.  We can let go of what we did the year before and move ahead with the latest practices as they are announced.

So if you come on board with us, you will not need to worry about any part of this as we will look after it for you.

If you have any questions I will be with you every step of the way.

Phil Aston | 01736 719342

Social Media Management 

Digital Marketing Support 

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