Twitter Marketing- The Best Tool To Promote Your Business

Twitter is one of the most popular social platforms in the recent years. It has more than 300 million active monthly users and is a great tool for marketing your business. We all know LinkedIn is the main place where businesses and professionals connect and promote their companies; however, Twitter provides a much more personal approach and, in my opinion, a better networking environment. Moreover, it’s easier as well as quicker to grow your followers on Twitter than on most of the other social media platforms. This way you have a much bigger audience to share your updates with. Facebook, for instance, is limiting the visibility of your posts, which means just a certain percentage of your fans will actually see them. Twitter, on the other hand, does not, which means your tweets could potentially be seen by all your followers.

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Now, that we defined Twitter is an amazing marketing tool above others, we need to figure out how to reveal its full potential in order to achieve optimal results. First of all, you need to start by modifying your profile. If you’re a company or a freelancer, you need to have your logo as a profile picture. If you’re a professional, you need a professional photo of yourself. Your bio is crucial as well. This and your profile picture are the things people see first. This is the so called ‘first impression’ about you, so make sure it rocks! Second step in building up your Twitter presence is to find relevant people/businesses to connect with. Don’t just follow random profiles, be selective. This way you show you have a strategy and you have clearly defined your goals. For instance, I use my Twitter profile for three main things: 1) to promote my website/blog posts, 2) to promote my services and myself as a freelancer and 3) to connect and engage with key people within the industry.

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It’s very important to have links re-directing to your website/blog in the little field under your bio. As I mentioned earlier, this section is the first thing people see in your profile, so make sure you embed all your important links in there. Now, that you are ready to start your Twitter marketing, you need to make sure you have valuable content to share. Your content is what builds your reputation among your audience, so you need to provide quality. Another important thing in terms of networking is when you start your tweeting activity, don’t just share your own content and nothing else. Re-tweeting your audience’s updates is an excellent way to engage. This way you show you value their work and encourage them to share yours as well; plus is a good way to win more followers. And don’t forget to add relevant hashtags. This way you make it easier for people with the same interests as you to find you and follow your updates. Favouriting your audience’s tweets is another good networking method, so whenever you spot a decent piece of content, just hit the star button!

Twitter-Marketing

Now you’re ready to start your Twitter marketing, so start experimenting with it to see what works best for you. Hope my little guide helps you identify the benefits of Twitter as a social media marketing tool and gives you a general idea on where to start from. However, social media is very time-consuming, so if you don’t have time to build your profile and manage it yourself, contact me and I will give you advice or build it for yourself. For more information, visit my website: www.worldofcreativecomms.com and let’s achieve decent results together!

Lidiya Kirilova

Is PR More Aligned With Marketing Than It Used To Be

Today I read an article by B2B Marketing on the connection between marketing and public relations nowadays. The results revealed in the B2B PR Agencies Repot 2015, suggest that 96 per cent of PR agencies think ‘PR is more mixed in with marketing than it used to be’ as the result of rapid digitisation. Moreover, 74 per cent said that nowadays ‘PR agencies are competing with marketing agencies much more.’ In this post I will attempt to analyse these results and explain why the border between marketing and PR is fading and will become even more blurred in the future.

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Originally, public relations (PR) is part of the marketing communications mix. However, PR evolved a lot by itself and became a whole new discipline. While marketing is more associated with sales, PR is focusing on communicating and building relationship with its various publics. At the end of the day, both marketing and PR aim to increase profit, but where the real difference comes from is in the means they use to achieve it. 

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Nowadays, things are completely different than they used to be, say about 5 years ago. This is when I started my first year at university and what I remember is social media was still at its dawn, marketing was all about sales and profit, and PR was mainly associated with press releases and the traditional media. During these years we have witnessed the dramatic changes PR and marketing have gone through, and their transition from traditional to digital. Originally, social media was rather associated as part of PR than marketing since it’s all about media and communication. But soon marketers also started seeing the huge potential social media has, and the opportunities it provides. And this is how the border started fading away.

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These days every business, as well as practitioner from any industry that pretends to be successful, is supposed to have well developed social profiles. A website, Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook profiles are a must. Digital marketing, content marketing, visual marketing, infographics, etc. are all innovative means of reaching the customer who has become much smarter and informed than they used to be. Technology and digital media are the things that are uniting marketing and PR nowadays and they are likely to make them bond with each other even more.

Lidiya Kirilova

Having Great Blog Content- Now What?

Blogging is very important part of social media nowadays. Most businesses have company blogs, most professionals have professional blogs, and many people have personal blogs, where they share opinion and information on different topics. There are so many good blogs out there but the one thing in common they all have is the challenge to stand out of the crowd and make their target audience get an interest in what they have to say and most important- make it engage. But how do you achieve this, especially if your blog is new?

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I’ve read recently in a post by Blog Marketing Academy that in order to achieve success with your blog, you have to do it all- be the ideas person, the executive, the designer, the writer, the researcher, the business person and so on- you have to wear all these hats at the same time. However, no one is good at everything so people are doing only what they enjoy in a blog- some love writing so they will have great content but presented in a boring way, others love design so they will have an attractive and eye-catchy blog, which, however, is not worth reading. That is why most people don’t get the desired results and give up too quickly. Patience and consistency are two virtues you must possess, if you want to have a great blog. It takes time and a lot of hard work before you get the results you want.

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Networking with other bloggers in your field is essential in order to increase your visitors’ number. This is one of the most effective ways to get noticed. Comment on other blogs, topics you are discussing in your blog as well and never forget to link to your blog. Follow other bloggers too as some of them will follow you back (You follow, I follow) and this way you will expand your network. Another very important thing is to link your blog to other social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. Create Facebook and Twitter pages for your blog and expand them as well. Also don’t forget to attach it to your LinkedIn profile. Promote all new posts you produce and try to engage relevant people to discuss them on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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To summerise, these are the steps you need to follow if you want to have a successful blog:

  • Come up with a great idea for a blog, create stunning design and write engaging content (don’t forget to do a proper research on the topics you’re discussing).
  • Brand yourself, create your own logo and unique style that is recognisable and memorable.
  • Be patient and consistent, don’t expect immediate results; if you work hard, you will achieve great results.
  • Prepare weekly plans with the activities you’re going to have on your blog.
  • Once your blog looks great and have a few posts (3-5) you find interesting and engaging, start promoting it.
  • Follow other relevant bloggers and engage on their blogs.
  • Create Facebook and Twitter pages for your blog and link it to your LinkedIn profile too.

With these simple tips you can achieve amazing results and make your blog popular among your target audience. And don’t forget simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication.

Lidiya Kirilova

Three Things That Will Boost Your Social Media Presence

Social media is gaining more and more popularity every day. There are thousands of new platforms and applications out there where you can share photos, videos, opinion on different topics etc. However, the challenge is to know how to use these effectively.

Many people still underestimate the power of social media and if I have to be honest, a few years ago I was one of them. I thought it was a waste of time and money and couldn’t understand how anyone, especially small businesses, could invest in it. However, last year I happened to start an internship in a small tourism company as a Social Media Executive (which I was quite sceptical about), and I have to admit I loved it from day one. After that I continued my career development in the social media field working as a freelancer for different clients. And three months earlier I was hired for the role of Social Media Account Executive. For this period I learnt so many things about social media, I could hardly list them all. That’s why I decided to pick three of them, which are quite key and if used in the right way, they can perform miracles.

engagementEngagement: Social media is about engagement with your key publics, no matter whether you use it for personal or business purposes. If you start interacting with relevant people (influencers and even potential clients and partners) through conversations on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, your Social Media presence is likely to blossom and your business to increase its revenue (remember how Obama won the elections in 2008).

Obama social media campaign

Blogs:  Blogging is a must if you want a successful business. However, almost everyone has a blog nowadays. But many people make the mistake to believe it’s all about the content. Content is king they say but for me if you don’t know how to promote it, it’s rather a pawn- it’s there, but no one notices it. Why? Because it doesn’t stand out. And it doesn’t stand out because blogging is not about throwing a piece of content in the air and praying for someone to read it. It is about engagement (yes, the magical word ‘engagement’ again). If you want to increase your blog’s visitors and make them engage, well engage first. Go and find other similar blogs and topics, people are writing about and give your opinion (and don’t forget to link to your blog as well). You’ll see how in a few weeks your readers’ number will double. Give in order to receive, isn’t it so?

Visual content: Yes, package sells and in social media, visual materials are the package you sell content in. This includes infographics, charts, graphs, pictures and so on. But again, there is plenty of visual content out there, how do you make yours stand out? The only answer I can give you is: be creative. Think about what describes you best and how to present it to your audience in an interesting and innovative way. For example, one of my ex-colleagues was using Lego to represent how a typical day at the office looks like. Quite creative, don’t you think?

miniature-Lego-office-Yard-Digital-1Social media is like a newly discovered continent- full of resources but still unexamined. So in order to conquer it and make it work for you, be innovative, be brave and follow the cycle: produce (visual) content, promote it, engage.

Lidiya Kirilova

Why Social Media Should be Part of Crisis Communication

Social media is now appropriate for all sorts of communication- B2C, B2B, H2H, P2P etc. but is it any good for crisis communication? The answer is yes. Social media has initiated a change in the way crisis communication functions nowadays. The influence it has is highlighted in the following ways: speed, engagement, control of the message, interactivity, authenticity, visibility & transparency, crisis facilitation etc.

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The crisis life cycle has three stages- pre-crisis, crisis and post-crisis. The pre-crisis stage should normally be planning of the worst case scenario. In this stage, social media could be involved as a communication tool with some of the organisation’s stakeholder groups. Depending on the type of organisation and the type of the crisis, these could be affected customers, victims and the public in general. What is important for the crisis managers to recognise, is the right messages they need to address to their publics and the type of social platforms that would be most appropriate to use.

The crisis phase occurs when the actual crisis hits. I have actually participated in two crisis simulations, both of which were handled using social media. I had to manage one of the crisis communication teams and guide them throughout the whole period of the crisis. As mentioned earlier, social media is a perfect communication tool for the organisation in crisis, especially with the affected parties. In our case the organisation was a university and the crisis itself was a malware bug that had hit the system, deleting all files of a large group of students, meaning they would not have been able to graduate. So part of these students went on Facebook and Twitter, posting updates and comments, demanding answers to these rumours (nothing regarding the crisis was officially confirmed). So my team had to reply to the students in a polite way, giving them the information they were demanding, but not saying too much at the same time.

When talking to your target audience on social media, the tone of voice is the most important thing. Another thing of great importance is to make sure the message you are communicating is the most appropriate one. When a crisis hits, the first thing the affected parties will do sm-crisisis to panic. But you as a crisis communicator must not panic! If you act with composure, you will be able to calm your target audience down, at least to some extent. Why social media is very useful in a time of crisis is because you are able to communicate your message directly to your target audience without the need of an intermediary, which in 99,9% of the cases would be the traditional media (which sometimes results in the so called “broken phone”). Of course, the media will give its point of view (which in most cases is at the expense of the organisation in crisis- e.g. BP Gulf of Mexico crisis), but through social media, you have given yours as well.

The third stage of the crisis life cycle – post-crisis – occurs when/if the organisation survives the crisis. At this stage social media is also very useful because the audience wants to see, first of all, what lessons the organisation has learnt from the crisis and second of all, what steps it takes to prevent another.

Many crisis managers, especially those of smaller organisations, still underestimate the importance of social media, not recognising the need of two-way communication and engagement with their target audiences. However, as the popularity of social media is growing, it has the potential of becoming an integral part of crisis communication, providing organisations with the opportunity to “do things right”.

Lidiya Kirilova