I’m sure you’ve noticed the big change over the weekend. As of March 30, Facebook has ported all of it’s pages into the new Timeline design, including business pages. While there are plenty of people who aren’t happy about the change, those who are business minded know how to accept, and most importantly, adapt to change. Properly used, Timeline has been shown to increase engagement by 46% on average. What does it mean for your business?
Unlike the old Facebook pages which took up to 2 days to provide insights and analytics, Timeline’s tools provide information within 5-10 minutes. New or enhanced metrics include virality, people talking about engagement, friends of friends and reach. What this does is give businesses the ability to monitor the popularity of their posts, the influence of their page, how far their posts are travelling, and even allows for adjustments to be made immediately. Tracking virality (the percentage of people who saw the page and “talked about it”) is now easy to do, which can help sellers tap into what’s being discussed amongst their fanbase and post accordingly.
Content, content, content
What is the most effective way to drive traffic to a storefront? Fresh content. Sure, it takes more work than the old Facebook Fanpages since Timeline encourages sellers to post new content frequently, but creating a daily posting plan rich with opportunities for customers to interact, through polls or thoughtful updates which engage the customer to participate in a discussion, will help businesses increase exposure.
Commonly known advertising tenants tell us that one of the best way to reach customers is through visual imagery (pictures and videos). With fully customizable features, like the 850 x 315 pixel cover, and 111 x 74 pixel picture icon (located just below the cover), businesses can focus on expressing their core brand message. Profile information has been moved from the left of page to the front and center, and have gained 310 pixels, which businesses can use to display more products or larger images in the most visually optimal spots on the page.
The real message here is that, while changing over to something new might be a hassle at first, Facebook’s Timeline provides an excellent opportunity for businesses to integrate themselves into the Facebook experience in ways that not only promote their products and services, but also create a social space where consumers can return for thoughtful interactions. Your business actually has the chance to become a regular Facebook “friend” for the fans, which will increase customer retention, and perhaps even opportunities for conversion (linking someone from Facebook to your own site where they can choose to become a member).
While it seems as though converting your model might take a little getting used to, the numbers indicate that it is a worthwhile investment. Some of the businesses involved in the preliminary launch of Timeline reported an increase in engagement by as much as 161%. The real question is, can you afford not to use Timeline?
Advertising agencies do put a considerable amount of effort into their advertising strategies, and now as online marketing is getting mainstream attention, we see them coming up with sophisticated and convincing strategies. A 3 letter Acronym is popular with online marketing. PPC (pay per click), which we know is very real, and SEO (search engine optimisation), and SMO (social media optimisation) and now we have SCO (social content optimisation). I have looked at their strategy and flow-chart extensively, and have worked in advertising for 10 years, along side many agencies, including the one that created this new one. The whole point of this new SCO is to show that search and social are not mutually exclusive, and a few added bonus points. Here is a look at the issues, and further points to consider.
Can we really say this is a new strategy? It is more like grandstanding and banner adding to something that should already be apart of sensible and step-by-step SEO (search engine optimisation) and social media strategy. Advertising agencies are very good at selling themselves to their clients, and then managing down their expectations – the words spoken directly to me by a major Asian director of a substantially sized ‘digital agency’.
Here is how you get customers from Google, Facebook, and YouTube in 2 steps. This video will show you how.
1. Make a Youtube Video
2. Ask to post on Facebook
No, I didn’t die. No, I didn’t fall off the edge of the planet. No, I didn’t get bored of this online stuff and go “offline”.
A New Year brings new changes to life and this year I decided to switch it all up. I challenged myself to make a YouTube video every day for the next year. This year I plan on focusing the mass majority of my energy on YouTube. I probably won’t be making blog posts or podcasts as much this year, but I can guarantee you will be able to see a video instead (which is much cooler)! 😉
Don’t worry, I’m still here. I may just be slow at times in responding to you. I assure you though that I read everything you send me and will respond to it.
To Your ULTIMATE SUCCESS,
If you’re a freelancer, you have to pay your dues and work your way up the ladder. The problem is that a lot of people are sitting on portfolio material which can make getting the better jobs a lot easier. Many freelancers do work like book printing jobs and don’t seem to realize how valuable this work actually is.
The fact is that some of the most basic work forms the basis of all jobs. Good work in these fields is a lot more useful than people think it is. If you’ve done work as a ghost writer, cover designer, or formatting work for a book print, you’ve also done the fundamental work required for some much higher paying jobs.
Contracts and employers are looking for skills. The better your skills, and the more value you can bring to a job or a contract, the more likely you are to get that job. You’ll also more than likely get more work and above all add to your portfolio some of this very valuable higher rate material.
The classic mistake when going for jobs is to be a bit too literal minded in interpreting what the job wants. It’s advisable to do your homework on any job which attracts your interest.
Start with the basics:
Check out the products, content and design issues: This is like a map of the realities of the job. It’s valuable information, and it can also show you how to approach getting the job.
What does the job really need? This is critical approach. Look for the strengths and weaknesses in the work. If the job lacks something you can do, you’ve got material to work with.
What additional values can you bring to the job? What would you say you can do that they’re not doing? Don’t get too modest about this issue, because your skills may be exactly what this job needs.
What materials can you use to give a really good presentation? What do you have in your portfolio that’s better than their existing work? Remember that you’re the expert in this case, and your skills need to prove that you know what you’re doing. If the contract sees good value, you’ve got the job.
What can you create to show the contract or the employer? This is a slightly sneakier approach, but it’s effective. Can you do something in their type of business as a mockup, which will act as a portfolio presentation, even if you don’t have direct experience? If so, you’ll at least get their interest, and quite possibly any extra outsourcing work they’ve got, as well.
The idea is to make yourself very clear:
A successful presentation has nothing to do with luck. It’s content that counts in getting the jobs as much as your designs and your content work. Keep that in mind, look for opportunities, and you’ll do very well.
What do you think?