Social Media

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Why Social Media Should Be Part of Your Marketing Strategy

I had an interesting meeting with a new client yesterday and we were talking about the importance of Social Media and do they do it!

The answer was they had a young apprentice who did this for them but they had since left and now stopped all activity.

This is very common, people think social should be carried out by the youngest person in the office, because they will understand it.  The facts are that Social Media is Marketing and should be taken just as seriously

I have been involved in marketing for over 30 years so technically I am not a young person! But all the marketing I do is through Social Media.

The rules of marketing are exactly the same It is just the tools we use have changed, they are faster and more efficient and actually more exciting.  So not to have a social media strategy and to think we need a young person in to do that is flawed thinking.  Just the same as saying I don’t know anyone on Twitter so I cannot see a reason to use it.  However, millions of people are. Twitter is great for late availability if you are in Tourism.  Just as with Facebook advertising you can easily target people who are interested in what you are actually doing

My core skill when I started Genius Loci Media was SEO.  I still do SEO, but it has changed and social media is now part of that mix.  It is important to realise that social media is now part of your marketing mix.

If you want help with social media please get in touch.

Phil Aston

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

How Many Hashtags Should You use in Twitter?

Twitter Hashtag Tip 1

You should use hashtags in Twitter (This is where they gained their influence). but do not use too many.
Use one or two at the most. If you use more than two your reach could go down between 17-20%.

Twitter is not Instagram where you can use more. I am seeing people on Twitter use four or more hashtags, this will mean your tweet is seen even less by your followers not more.

Twitter Hashtag Tip 2

Another tip is use hashtags for text you have not used in your tweet. So for example if you are telling people about your ‘hotel breaks in Cornwall’ there is no need to use #cornwall as a hashtag because Twitter will pick that up. Use #weekendplans or #holiday which will extend your reach.

Thanks, Phil

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Latest Facebook Updates must be making Google very nervous.

Social Media is SEO

A couple of years ago Google experimented with making its own attempt as a social media platform ‘Google Plus’ the centre of its universe. Some people even said Google Plus was google and that once logged in you did not need to leave. The platform offered everything from setting up scheduled video events to the added benefits of SEO for local search.
With the formation of Alphabet Google has dismantled much of this and put it under different headings.

Last week Facebook made an announcement which bring much of what Google promised under one roof with the added advantages of real time recommendations and sharing capabilities’.

The real game changer for local businesses is as follows:-

New Call To Action Buttons

  • Order food: You can now order food from restaurants directly from Facebook Pages. Simply click “Start Order” on any restaurant’s Facebook Page that uses Delivery.com or Slice.
  • Request an appointment: For local businesses that require you to book an appointment, such as spas and salons, you can now request a time via the business’ Facebook Page and view their entire range of services and offerings. They’ll then get back to you on Messenger to confirm your appointment.
  • Get a quote: Some local business Pages will now have a “Get Quote” button at the top that lets you easily and quickly request a quote from the business.
  • Get tickets to movies and events: For many new movies, you can buy movie tickets straight from their Facebook Pages via Fandango. In partnership with Ticketmaster and Eventbrite, Facebook are also making it possible for people to get tickets to other events — free or paid — directly from the event page.

There is no doubt that these new initiatives will affect Google AdWords revenue and Google search as people will have the option to search for a restaurant, read reviews, book a table and order their food without using Google.

If you want help with your Social Media Strategy or want advice with Facebook Advertising please get in touch.

Phil Aston

01736 719342

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Social Media Trends Tourism – One to One Communication

 

social media tourism news

Although there are many benefits of outsourcing elements of your social media activities, especially relating to advertising, video editing, graphics etc.

There is one growing area where it is best handled in house.

This is with ‘one to one’ engagement. We tend to think of social media about broadcasting to all your followers. For your followers the benefits of social media are being able to get hold of a business directly and expect a response in real time.

In 2015 98% of tweets to Airlines were in response to a customer question or issue. In 2016 that trend is turning towards hotels and accommodation providers.
In January 2016, the 1:1 percentage for Hotel/ Accommodation brands was close to 88 percent; by July 2016, that number had risen to 91 percent. Source: Marketing Land.

This increase in ‘one to one’ communication is growing as guest expectations rise when using social media to communicate. Social media is now the go to medium for asking questions and getting advice. With many people continually logged into their social media channels and always having their phone with them the expectations of getting a timely response have never been higher.

The other trend is people much prefer to use social media to get in touch than pick up the phone.
The response they get from this ‘one to one’ engagement can obviously be shared with their own networks. Facebook now awards brand pages with more reach if they do respond more quickly.

From Social Media to Social Care

This ‘one to one’ engagement on social media is also an important part of the selling process and a way to build lasting relationships with your guests.
A well-planned social customer care strategy is now an important necessity for all tourism brands, especially as every guest has a device in their pocket which can broadcast, record and talk to everyone they know in seconds.

Phil Aston
Genius Loci Media
01736 719342 | www.geniusloci.co.uk
by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Should I Upload My Video to YouTube or Facebook?

I get asked this question a lot.

The answer is you should upload your video to wherever you have an audience.

Some Examples

YouTube

  • The second largest search engine next to Google and owned by them.
  • This should be your first port of call for uploading your video.
  • You can also promote your videos more cheaply than Google Adwords
  • Easy to share and embed
  • Set up cards for links to your offers, website or funding websites
  • You can also broadcast live from YouTube

Facebook

  • You should always upload your video directly to Facebook as well as YouTube
  • Videos play automatically in Facebook newsfeeds
  • You can add a link or call to action to your website
  • Very easy for people to share and comment

Twitter

  • You can upload up to 140 seconds of video footage
  • Video plays within the newsfeed

Instagram

  • You can upload up to 60 seconds of video footage

Vimeo

  • The benefits are no Ads and you can control what video comes up next.  However, you are missing out on the discoverability of the other platforms

Editing and Branding

A while back all you needed to do was publish your video on YouTube.  What I am suggesting is a bit more work and involves different edits and ensuring you add your branding at each stage. However, this approach will ensure you respect each audience and optimise your video for each platform.

You can also tailor the message for each audience.  Remember that you can re-position your video for other campaigns.

We offer video editing and support via our Digital Marketing and SEO packages – please get in touch if you need any help.

Phil Aston

Genius Loci Media

 

 

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Do You Really Want to Compete with Facebook?

snapchat-instagram

The Social Media and App space is crowded and every time a new name emerges people like me will advise clients to register their name and set up an account.
However, what is becoming apparent is any idea that gains traction is being watched by Facebook and with their resources and very deep pockets you have to be very brave to take them on.

Recent Casualties and Pivots
Blab – The live streaming app has decided to change it whole business model since the launch of Facebook Live

SnapChat – You may remember that Facebook tried to buy Snapchat for 3 Billion dollars but they refused. Not to be put off Facebook simply developed their own version and attached it to Instagram on August 5th. Instagram has 300 million users compared to SnapChats 150 million and early reports suggest that Instagram’s story telling options are far easier to use than SnapChat.
Advertisers are also seeing a 100 times more engagement on Instagram stories than SnapChat. Should SnapChat be very worried…

Facebook are very keen to tempt back the younger demographic to its social space and with many old users struggling to really ‘get’ SnapChat, the new ‘Stories’ feature on Instagram could do just that.
To further put the pressure on SnapChat Facebook has announced on August 8th new SnapChat styled filters which can be used to jazz up photos in various ways, such as turning faces into animations. Snapchat features a wide range of these filters, and they are increasingly being used as sponsorship opportunities for brand partners.

Phil Aston
Genius Loci Media
01736 719342 | www.geniusloci.co.uk

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

SEO / Social Media – Predictions for the rest of 2016

Genius INSIGHTS | Digital marketing news

Social Media is now a big part of SEO, just as Blogging is part of your content strategy.
Here are my thoughts for rest of the year.

The Social Media News Feed

This is now where everyone is hanging out (and on Mobile). If one of your guests has 500 friends who each have 500 friends, then you have access to 250,000 leads who will take more notice if a post is recommended by someone they know and trust.
The news feed is where people go to for latest news in their community, their interests and their friends.
Social Media shows you what you want before you think to ask (i.e. use Google Search).

Tone of Voice

Professional and corporate accounts are not going to dominate news feeds – you need to ensure you develop representative personalities for your brands.
Users trust the people providing information in their feeds, especially if they can interact and feel they know the face behind the logo.

Google

Google Search will not be the platform to deliver quality viewers in the future. Quality viewers will come to your website via social media news feeds and online word of mouth as people scan theirs feeds and friends.
When people find you via Google you still have to prove you are the best choice. A popular social media post with good interaction and shares can tell people immediately that you are worth it.

Content is King (Not Anymore)

Information is no longer valuable and we have to accept that unless you are a scientist on the verge of a major discovery that what we say on our website is being said in a similar way by others in our field. So your focus has to be on context and how we position ourselves.

Be Authentic and Build Trust

Social Media posts should not just be about your offers or brand, you should also;

  • Talk about your passions – location – food – people etc.
  • Talk about other things that your fans might like
  • Promote other people / businesses in your area
  • Post tips and advice
  • Know who your posts are for
  • Start with the benefits – (endless scrolling does not work)
  • Let your fans share their photos and experiences

Facebook Ads

Now a key part of any marketing strategy. The targeting on Facebook is fantastic and Ads can be shown to separate audiences as you experiment with different posts. So if you want to target women living within 40km of Truro on their mobiles who like eating out, you can.
Facebook Ads work better than promoted posts.

Google Ads

If you want to be on the 1st page on Google on a mobile, then these are essential as the 1st page of results are now all Ads. People still tend to avoid ads on a desktop but on mobile they just want the fastest results.

Video Marketing

As I have mentioned many times, video is the best way to gain trust and get shares and interaction. What is also happening this year is that people are watching more video on their mobiles with the sound off. So adding sub-titles or text is now very important. Facebook make it easy to add a link.

Hashtags / Links in Facebook

All social media platforms have a search facility and Facebook search is certainly improving. I would recommend adding a maximum number of three hashtags and always a link back to a Blog post or the main website.
Should you use your own Hashtags? Unless it’s a household name or you are a TV program I would say not. Use Hashtags that people are actually searching for. The whole point of any hashtag is to get discovered.

If you need any help or advice for your business please get in touch.

Phil Aston

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Hashtags in Facebook

hashtags

All social media platforms have a search facility and Facebook search is certainly improving.  I would recommend adding a maximum number of three hashtags and always a link back to a Blog post or your main website.

Should you use your own Hashtags?  Unless it’s a household name or you are a TV program I would say not.  Use Hashtags that people are actually searching for.  The whole point of any hashtag is to get discovered.

I would recommend trying Facebook search yourself, I have found that one #hashtag can work very well.

Facebook will give the option of search results via;

  • Top Posts
  • Latest People
  • Photos
  • Videos
  • Places
  • Apps
  • Groups
  • Events

 

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Twitter Increases Video Length to 140 Seconds

Social Media Tips : Twitter Update

You can now upload up to 140 seconds of video direct to Twitter. This is up from the previous limit of 30 seconds.

It is very easy to edit your clip within Twitter if you want to make it shorter. You can do this via your desktop or the mobile App. Videos play automatically and this is a much better option than sharing from YouTube.

In other news you can now also Re-Tweet you own tweets. This is also a good move, especially if you have an offer running and you want to promote it again the following week.

If you need any help with your social media strategy then please get in touch

Phil Aston
Genius Loci Media

by Phil Aston Phil Aston No Comments

Social Media Marketing – Choosing An Agency

social media marketing - choosing an agency

Social media is now an every day part of any business’ marketing strategy and most people still don’t know how to to use it properly.

This period of time reminds me of the early days of SEO with agencies popping up everywhere making promises which are not only unsustainable but offer very little ROI.

There is a misconception that social media is free – it is not.  Even if you do it yourself, your time is your most important asset so are you achieving your goals and getting a return on your social media activities? I see many businesses delegating Social Media tasks to the younger member of the team (because they get it), or automating their social media and cross posting thinking that will work!

It is after many people have watched with dismay their follower counts stagnate or get little interaction with their posts that they either pull back their social media activities (big mistake) or look for a way or outsourcing their social media marketing to an agency.

Choosing an agency for your social media marketing is a very good idea.  However, in a world where everyone is now a social expert or pivoting from the old world of marketing there are some things to look out for:

The Agency you don’t want can fall into the following camps:

  1. The over complicated approach – This agency will put 10 people in a meeting room to discuss brand voice and then ask for 30 days to compose a tweet for your approval.
  2. The Social Media Experts Agency – This agency possibly started less than a year ago, has a few hundred followers and posts once a month.
  3. The Cheap Seats – This agency will offer to send 15 + tweets a day for £20 per month.
  4. The offer of 5000 new followers for £10…..just walk away from this and don’t look back.
  5. Delegate the task to their junior staff or cross post to several platforms at once.

As a general rule ‘never take advice from someone who has fewer followers than you’.

The Agency you do want will do this:

  1. Target your audience on the platforms where your customers hang out.
  2. Build a following with people interested in your product / service.
  3. Target keywords, users and brands.
  4. Share your content with their own network (Look for how much interaction their own posts get).
  5. Grow your audience with real followers.
  6. Set up and manage targeted Ads as required.
  7. Bring more traffic to your website and increase enquiries (verified via analytics).
  8. Design graphical posts using images and video as required.
  9. Have a background in SEO as Social Media is a key part of Search.
  10. Offer advice on new Social Media tools such as live streaming and use them themselves.

Here is a snapshot of our Twitter activity for the first 7 days of July 2016.

If you would like help with your social media strategy please get in touch.

Our achieved Social Media reach is over 165,000 (May 2016)

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