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Blabbing About Blab! New Video Marketing Tools

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Source: business2community.com
Author:
Brian Basilico


Back in the old days (1980’s and 1990’s), producing a video took a lot of technology and talent. Today, it still takes talent (maybe you and a guest), but the technology thing has gotten a whole lot easier. YouTube brought personal video into the mainstream, to the point that people have their own channels today. These people are called YouTubers – heck they are even ranked (yes that is a thing!).


Video has taken the internet by storm. You now have Periscope and Meerkat (personal broadcasting platforms based on mobile devices). Google hangouts were all the rage, because they auto post to YouTube (and Google owns YouTube). The newcomer is Blab.im.

What Is A Blab?

Blab is a live-streaming web and mobile-based platform that enables a public video chat with one to four participants at a time. It combines the best Periscope, Meerkat and Google Hangouts features into one very easy to use and relatively stable platform. Periscope and Meerkat are primarily mobile only based platforms. Google Hangouts has been known to be wonky and unreliable at times.

Viewers can watch the live stream and they can participate by Tweeting (sharing the Blab) on the left hand side of the desktop application or below on the mobile version. You can also leave comments for the hosts and participants (on the right hand side of the desktop application).

If one of the four seats is open, you can request to join in on the conversation, but it’s up to the host to accept you into the broadcast.


So Why Should I Care?

Interview, job, serious.

Tweet Chats, Google Hangouts, and Facebook groups have been around for years, but only Google had video. Facebook has started “Facebook Mentions”, but it is only open to the rich and famous. They can broadcast live-stream video into Facebook. I don’t know about you, but I am neither rich nor famous (yet), and neither are most of my Facebook friends (a few are and they have Mentions already).

I don’t know if you have noticed, but most people don’t schedule their lives around what’s on TV any more. DVR’s and on-demand video like Comcast, Hulu, Amazon, Apple TV and Roku, now own the viewing space, because it’s on your timeframe … on-demand. Heck, with most of the options above you can watch on-demand with your mobile devices. The keyword here is ON-DEMAND.

Other than live sports (in this house) all other programming is watched on-demand. People are leaving their cable and satellite boxes in droves, and the big companies are struggling to gain or even maintain their market share.

What Can I Do With This?

So, what if you could have your own TV channel? One that people receive alerts to through social media and email to come watch your messages rather than watching the “Bachelor” or “Survivor – Geriatric Island”? With a mic and a webcam, you can have the new reality TV. Except this time, you are educating or entertaining people in a way that will make them want to engage with you and your brand.

Here are some ideas for any business…

Start A Blab Show – Start a regular Blab. Find great guests to interview. Have a set time to broadcast and invite exciting, verbose, and non-camera shy guests. Quality is not a huge concern, but I suggest you Skype with your guests before your Blab to make sure they have some presence. You also should make sure that their technology is in working order. Nothing kills a show like a monologue where your guest can’t connect and you have nothing to say (trust me I have done that on podcasts and it’s not fun – video makes it even worse).

Do A Customer Q&A – Have two people from your company join in to moderate a customer Q&A. You can seed the Blab with a little training and then open it up for customers to ask questions and interact. Bonus points if you can find a customer that is using your product or service and has some unique tips for other customers. Make it entertaining and engaging.

Be A Guest – Find a Blabber (if that is a term?) and become a guest on their show. If not, find someone you admire and join a Blab they are involved with (as a guest or participant). Sometimes, just jumping into the hot seat and adding some good questions or advice is enough to have you invited back as a guest on their Blab. Keep in mind that Blabs can lead to interviews on podcasts, radio shows and magazine articles as well, so never under-estimate the power of being seen online!

Final Thoughts

Blab is a relatively new platform and relies on the internet. If you don’t have a very reliable high-speed internet connection, then you will have some glitches. As far as I have seen, it has been much more reliable than Google Hangouts , but it is young and in beta (not final software), so you have to be ready for technical difficulties. I had to sign in to an interview three times before I could get my audio to work.

You can’t control what your audience says. I was on a Blab where the last guest was dropping F-Bombs like a Blitzkrieg! There is not a ‘seven second delay’ like there is on live radio, so make sure your audience is prepped and ready for anything!

My suggestion is to sign up for an account and log into a few Blabs. Follow people you know to see what they are doing and how they are using it. It is new and cool … but only the beginning of the personal video broadcasting revolution. If you want to be relevant in this new personal brand internet world, you owe it to yourself to check this out!

Tags:  live streaming  marketing  Social media marketing  video 

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Facebook Power Editor: The Breakdown You’ve Been Waiting For

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-09-02 at 11.28.14 AM.png


Facebook advertising has become huge in the marketing world, and that’s only one of the reasons our team at
Loud Rumor loves this strategy. It’s an awesome marketing tool for small businesses, but unless you understand how Facebook advertising works, this can seem like a monster.


We’re here to help break it down. The Facebook Power Editor is a tool that allows you to create, analyze, and edit your campaigns, ad sets, and ads in one very simple and convenient place.


So whether you want to start Facebook advertising or learn how to optimize your social media marketing, here’s a bit of insight to get you started!

1 - You don’t have to worry about text limitations

When you use the Facebook Power Editor, you’ll notice that you have a lot more freedom than with the Ads Manager. So essentially you’re able to express your message with more room - and that’s awesome. Although there is still a character limit, it’s so drastically increased that marketers rarely hit it.

2 - Keep track of your results with exported reports

Whether you want to create reports for the clients you manage or for your own personal analysis, Facebook Power Editor allows you to create reports for your campaigns. From there, you can event export the data into external programs like Excel. This allows for easy reading.

3 - Manage all your ads in one place

Chances are that you’ll have one campaign running with multiple ads. So you want to be able to check these easily. Power Editor allows you to do that. You can open different ads without it taking you to a whole separate window (like Ads Manager does). It’s super user friendly and allows you to switch between ads at the click of a button. Everything is under one roof. This way, you should be more relaxed managing your ads… like this:

relaxed.gif

4 - Review more than just your ad results

Facebook Power Editor is awesome because not only does it provide analytics for your ads, but for your posts as well. When you go to “Page Posts,” you’ll see the numbers of your status’ reach, engaged users, and people who are talking about your content. This information is super useful as it can be incorporated into your other marketing efforts. Take note of which posts do really well, and expand on them.

5 - Super targeted audience settings

If you want to target people who have already engaged with your business on Facebook and shown interest, you can do that. Or you can start from scratch and create an audience for your ads based on people’s age, interests, behavior, and so on. It’s pretty awesome - you can get super specific so that your ads only target people who would potentially want your product or services.


If you haven’t tapped into the Facebook Power Editor yet, we can help. As you can see, there are a ton of benefits to using this tool for your social media marketing. Not only do you have more advertising freedom, but it’s very convenient and targeted. Let us know if you have any questions!

Tags:  facebook  facebook advertising  Power Editor  Small Business  social media  Social media marketing 

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Google’s look, evolved

Posted By Gabriel Salcido, Arizona Small Business Association, Tuesday, September 1, 2015

  Source: Google Blog

Google has changed a lot over the past 17 years—from the range of our products to the evolution of their look and feel. And today we’re changing things up once again:



So why are we doing this now? Once upon a time, Google was one destination that you reached from one device: a desktop PC. These days, people interact with Google products across many different platforms, apps and devices—sometimes all in a single day. You expect Google to help you whenever and wherever you need it, whether it’s on your mobile phone, TV, watch, the dashboard in your car, and yes, even a desktop!

  

Today we’re introducing a new logo and identity family that reflects this reality and shows you when the Google magic is working for you, even on the tiniest screens. As you’ll see, we’ve taken the Google logo and branding, which were originally built for a single desktop browser page, and updated them for a world of seamless computing across an endless number of devices and different kinds of inputs (such as tap, type and talk).

 

It doesn’t simply tell you that you’re using Google, but also shows you how Google is working for you. For example, new elements like a colorful Google mic help you identify and interact with Google whether you’re talking, tapping or typing. Meanwhile, we’re bidding adieu to the little blue “g” icon and replacing it with a four-color “G” that matches the logo.

This isn’t the first time we’ve changed our look and it probably won’t be the last, but we think today’s update is a great reflection of all the ways Google works for you across Search, Maps, Gmail, Chrome and many others. We think we’ve taken the best of Google (simple, uncluttered, colorful, friendly), and recast it not just for the Google of today, but for the Google of the future. You’ll see the new design roll out across our products soon. Hope you enjoy it!

Tags:  branding  marketing 

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Up Your Conversion Rate With These Awesome Website Features

Posted By Michael Arce, Loud Rumor, Wednesday, August 19, 2015

awesome.jpg


As a small business, your website is the heart of your online marketing. It’s the face of your company. So you want it to be awesome.


That being said, you want your website to go above and beyond so that it really stands out amongst competitors. Not only does it need to be optimized for SEO and mobile friendliness, but it also needs to have features that will really help increase your conversion rate.


Related: 4 Design Trends That Can Blow up Your SEO Efforts

Chat

91% of people who use chat do so for information on a product they want to buy, to resolve an issue, or to find answers in a timely manner.” So clearly, chat is important. It’s a great way for potential customers to reach out to you without picking up their phone or emailing. Chat is fast and convenient. It’s also a great way to close the deal. There are a ton of chat features out there to choose from, but we use Olark at Loud Rumor and really love it.

Video

People love watching videos. This has become one of the more popular content marketing strategies, and for good reason… People spend on average 88% more time on a site that has video. So you definitely want to incorporate this into your website. Make your video short and sweet. If it’s too long, visitors won’t watch. You want the video on your website to give customers an idea of who you are, what you do, and your core values.

Picreel

This is a great way to increase conversions when people are on your site. Picreel is known as “powerful conversion rate optimization software.” Let’s say someone lands on your blog, reads the article, and is about to exit your site. As their mouse goes to leave, Picreel happens. A popup with a strong call-to-action takes over the screen. This gives visitors the chance to opt-in to something valuable, like an e-Book, guide, newsletter, event, and so on. Picreel encourages people to convert right before they leave your site...

leave.gif

Trust

It’s commonly known that customers want to invest in companies that they know, like, and trust. So you need to earn that trust through your website. There are two ways to do this. The first is to add reviews from your other clients. Before someone buys your product or services, they like to see what others have to say and think. Another way to build trust is by adding icons to your credible organizations, certificates, and so on. If you’re part of the BBB, show that on your site. If you’re Google certified, show that as well.


As you can tell, there’s a lot that goes into an incredible website. If you have any questions on how to optimize yours, contact us. These features will improve your results significantly. Get ready - the conversions are about to start rolling in!

Tags:  conversion rate  small business  web design  website 

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Why Does Social Media Cost so Much? (And How to Get a Good Deal)

Posted By Rhette Baughman, Arizona Small Business Association, Tuesday, August 18, 2015

I recently came across this great article written by long-time ASBA member, Jennifer Maggiore. I wanted to share it in case you are at a place in your business where you're seeing the need for your company to have social media engagement (which I hope you are!) and are starting to explore hiring someone to manage it for you.

Why does social media cost so much? (and how to get a good deal)

I am often asked some version of this question on a regular basis: “Why does social media cost so much?” I’m also often asked lots of follow up questions about how to get the best deal on social media services. I get it, everyone (especially entrepreneurs) are looking at how to save a buck and minimize expenses.

My team and I have offered social media consulting and management services since 2005, which means that for 10 years I’ve seen freelancers to big firms (and everything in between) who have done poor jobs, so-so jobs and great jobs on handling social media for friends, prospects and clients. I’ve also had a few situations in which a prospect has handed me someone else’s proposal and asked me to meet or beat the price, which is always an enlightening experience.

So, here is what I have learned about the cost of social media services and how to get a great deal on a good job.

1. You will get what you pay for. If you are on a limited budget because you’re just starting out, you are probably better off using the amazing resources at your fingertips and Googling some social media tutorials, and using one or two social media platforms that you can manage well.

Why? Because good (did you read that? I said good, you want good, effective social media right?) social media takes a LOT of time. If you’re just looking for the cheapest person to do your social media you will likely end up with A) someone totally inexperienced, B) someone who will cut corners to make it worth their while, or C) someone who isn’t really committed and will post sporadically at best.

How could you entrust your brand to people willing to work for peanuts? You may find that your posts are inconsistent or nonexistent, they could be full of errors, or even worse if you’re working with an inexperienced social media professional they may not understand your brand or audience and inadvertently piss people off with what they post.Don’t risk it, pay for a quality job or do it yourself until you can comfortably afford a professional.

2. Have a budget. Yep, social media costs money, unless you’re lucky enough to find someone willing to barter with you. Nothing makes it more difficult to work with someone than asking for a budget and being told they don’t have one. It tells your social media professional that you aren’t serious about your business or you are unwilling to be honest about how much you can spend (whether it’s a little or a lot).

Every real, established business has a marketing budget – social media should fall under that category. If you’re looking for some marketing dollars to throw at social media, look at what’s currently working under that category and cut what isn’t.

Be ready to shell out a (bare) minimum of $1000 a month to work with a freelancer on a very basic scope of work (and up from there depending on what you need and who you work with). There are a number of factors that are taken into account when determining your fees, including the amount of work you are asking for on a monthly basis, the expertise and resources of the professional or firm you are working with, and many people forget to factor in the fees the sites themselves charge for sponsored ads (which are a necessity these days).

If you’re working with a creative group you will likely be looking at 4 or 5 figures each month for effective social media that does what it’s supposed to do.

3. Be a GREAT client. I am personally usually willing to make a small concession on pricing for a GREAT client. What makes a GREAT client? A terrific attitude, fun subject matter, realistic expectations, trusting us to take the lead, getting back to us in a timely manner and someone who values my time. Basically, make my job easier.

3B. I’d like to expand a bit more on valuing time. You wouldn’t want anyone to waste your time, so don’t waste your social media professional’s time. If you work with a firm that charges by the hour, you can save yourself a bundle of money by calling or emailing only when it’s important. I have had clients who have reached out to us about broken printers (I wish I was kidding), personal problems and company infighting on the client’s end (yes, really) and to ask us to send them the same graphic files over and over again because they weren’t organized enough to save the files where they could find them.

Don’t get me wrong, no one should nickel and dime you for pleasantries or short, simple interactions, but inconsiderate requests, inappropriate requests, or requests that take a lot of time to fulfill will cost you more money. Respecting your vendors’ time will get you the best deal.

4. Plan well. Our most organized and successful clients either have an editorial calendar or ask us to create one for them. They understand the ebbs and flows of their business, we plan sales promotions and special offers well in advance, and then for the most part the client sticks to it.

Last minute rush jobs, repeated changes or tinkering, and asking for the same explanation more than once adds up – if it costs someone time, it costs you money. Be organized and stick to your plan, avoid last minute changes and you’ll minimize your social media management fees.

5. Understand why it takes so much time. This will save you lots of heartache when it comes to billing. You will either be able to contain your fees to something you can live with OR you will understand what is going into your investment in social media services.

You MUST get a contract in writing (and read it) and ask questions if you aren’t clear on what the scope of work includes. It is not OK to ask for everything you need all month and then freak out on your vendor about the amount of fees you’ve racked up. A good social media professional will explain how much time they believe your project will take monthly, and why.

For example, we spend a good deal of time researching studies, trends and timely news articles each month when developing a client’s content. Next, a copy writer has to actually write up all that content (typically a minimum of a post a day X the number of social media platforms + other things like blog posts, newsletters, print and web ad copy) and then a copy editor proofs all that content for typos, grammatical errors and brand / voice. We also have to get a client to approve that content, we have to post the content and then we monitor for comments, leads, questions and complaints (and reply to them, which can get complicated and time / labor intensive), and if anyone is talking about your business outside of our posts.

We also keep an eye on trending topics, cooperative marketing opportunities and what your competition is up to. We pull reporting each month to make sure we are offering more of the content that your audience likes and less of the stuff that isn’t working, and use reporting to develop contests and promotions. If you are running sponsored posts, or requesting graphic design (which go through a similar lengthy process to ensure quality and effectiveness), or requesting meetings, phone calls, new or different services or training, the time for those requests can add up quickly.

6. Expertise will cost you more. There are a zillion people out there who claim to be social media professionals. The expertise is what separates the boys and girls from the men and the women. More than just being able to write some cute posts, you want someone (or a creative group) who understands strategy and has experience with designing plans that include tactics that achieve specific outcomes.

The better the proven track record, the more expense involved. But look – if you know you’re going to spend some money and you want a plan that will work, you are much more likely to achieve your goals working with experienced social media professionals than keeping it on the cheap by asking your 17 year old nephew to Facebook for you in exchange for gas money. Remember #1 on this list? You get what you pay for.

More Food for Thought

Keep in mind that I focused on keeping costs down in this post. It is not unusual to spend $5,000-$10,000 or more each month on social media services, especially if you require ’round the clock monitoring, have lots of engagement, spend a lot on ads or need multiple social media professionals working on your platforms (say to provide customer service for example). If you happen to work in healthcare, law, finance, insurance or another regulated industry you will also pay more to work with a professional who understands advertising regulations and compliance for your industry.

Is this freaking you out? It shouldn’t. You are paying money to make money in the form of great branding, increased engagement and eventually conversions. Think back to the crappy feeling you got the last time someone wanted something for nothing from you. Don’t do that to your social media professional – you are asking them to help you make money, and that costs money. Be honest about what you need and what you can offer.

Have questions? Shoot me an email at jennifer at red balloon inc dot com.

 

About Jennifer: Jennifer Maggiore is a nationally recognized social media consultant, author and speaker. She launched her company in 2005, quickly expanding her business as one of the country’s first social media consultants.

Today, she and her team work with public and private companies throughout the United States, offering social media management, strategy and training services, including a specialty in HIPAA and NLRA consulting for healthcare organizations.

red balloon was named a Top 10 Marketing Firm in her home state of Arizona, Jennifer was recognized as one of 35 Women Entrepreneurs in Arizona Under 35, and she was most recently interviewed for the show Roadtrip Nation.

Tags:  marketing  social media  Social media marketing 

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