Retweet After Me: Dec. 16, 2014

Learn When to Use JPEG, GIF, or PNG with This Graphic by Melanie Pinola

When working with images, certain file formats may be better than others, depending on what your goals are. This infographic showcases the best uses for JPEG, GIF, and PNG file formats. [Read More]

6 Social Media Templates to Save You Hours of Work by Evan LePage

Social media is a relatively new tool for most businesses. This means that, unlike many other marketing tools, when people begin to build out social media for their business, they’re starting from scratch. They haven’t created social media strategies before or they don’t know what questions to ask for a social media audit, and finding out can be both difficult and time consuming. [Read More]

5 Steps to Kickstarting Your Content Marketing Strategy, Now by Andra Mircioiu

You might already know that content marketing is an essential part of your overall strategy. But do you know what content marketing is—and how it can help you grow your business? [Read More]

Can I really take a social media vacation? by Lance Ulanoff

Stories about unplugging for the holidays abound at this time of year. Most deal with shutting down email and counsel leaving the computer behind. They also tend to skirt the whole issue of social media. It’s attached to your mobile devices, after all, so it’s pretty hard to leave it all behind. [Read More]

A New Yorker’s Take On Swarm by Jordan Crook

When foursquare split its app into two and launched Swarm, I decided to take some time to get to know it before sharing some thoughts. As a New Yorker who has never been sold on social location apps, I’m pleasantly surprised by its ability to make me act, remember to use it, and to create the possibility for great experiences. That goes far beyond what any app like it has managed to do — for me at least. [Read More]

Retweet After Me: Week of Oct. 14

This Week in Social: Expiration Dates for Social Media by Olsy Sorokina

Does the saying “The Internet never forgets” still hold up? This reverse amnesia of the Information Age has sparked many global discussions on privacy and online reputation, and it is reflected more and more in the changes made by those in charge of our online information, like social networks and ISPs. [Read More]

The Best (And Worst) Times to Post on Social Media (Infographic) by Rachel Gillett

We get it, managing your business’s social media accounts can be daunting: from tweaking tweet lengths to mastering Facebook tone, to using the right hashtags at the right times. But what savvy social media users know is that there’s a science to getting it right–if you follow certain parameters, you’re almost guaranteed to get the results you were working toward. All it takes is some knowledge and forethought, and anyone can be well on their way to posting engaging content. [Read More]

Provocative Ad Campaign On Pause by Kaitlin Mulhere

A Boston-area university has pressed pause on an ad campaign launched this summer that was described as bold and provocative. Suffolk University made noise in July when it began a campaign that described the small, private university as anti-elite and a haven for hard-working students. It was the university’s first broad campaign in eight years. [Read More]

Pinterest to Offer Targeted Pins, Tracking for Advertisers by Kevin Allen

Pinterest is stepping a bit closer to helping its retail advertisers understand their actual ROI. Publications have inferred the social media platform’s revamped advertising plan through some of its updated privacy policy documents; chief among these updates will be the ability for advertisers to directly target those Pinterest users who are already customers. [Read More]

Could Ello be the next Facebook rival? by Kevin Allen

Tired of being shown all those spammy ads on Facebook when you’re trying to figure out what your friends’ kids are up to? Do you wish there were a social platform that didn’t treat you like a piece of metadata? You’re not alone. Ello has been getting considerable attention recently, and we can almost guarantee your parents won’t use it. The service is opening to new members by invitation only. Invites for the service have been sold on eBay for up to $500, according to several reports. [Read More]

Turn Marketing Negatives into Positives

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Stuff happens. We can’t control it, and even when everything has been planned out, things will still go wrong at times. And we can use these situations to our advantage.

Negative Comments

People will have negative things to say from time to time, whether it be because a student got a parking ticket, or a student wanted to give feedback about programs at the university, you will hear opinions. Turn these negative comments into positive ones by helping your audience members understand things and fix situations.

A student who feels they’re not represented well on campus provides the chance to set that student up with a meeting with the president to make sure he’s heard. By helping each individual person who tweets or posts, you are changing their relationship with the university, and once you do that, they’ll feel more connected. The bigger the brand advocate, the more they’ll sing your praises.

Mistakes

We’re all human, and we make mistakes, so when they happen, own up to it. Apologize, and make the situation right. As the social media or community manager, a lot of times these mistakes may have nothing to do with you, but your audience member doesn’t care if it was your department or another one. They just want a solution, and to know that someone cares about making it right. So do just that. Make it your problem, find the solution and make it right, even though you didn’t have anything to do with the original issue.

Negatives Turn Into Positives

It’s amazing how the smallest things can make negatives turn into positives. Fixing situations, understanding and listening to your audience members can have just that effect.

Quotables: Brian Solis

“Social media spark a revelation that we, the people, have a voice, and through the democratization of content and ideas we can once again unite around common passions, inspire movements, and ignite change.”

-Brian Solis, Engage!

 

Growing and Nurturing an Audience

social media flowers

Recently, I’ve experienced a recurring theme of people asking about how they can use social media to inform people, to promote their event, or because they just need a Facebook or Twitter page. And yes, social media can be used to inform people and promote events and programs, but that’s is not what they are about. They are about conversations and relationships. And don’t even get me started on having social media channels just for the sake of having them. But your audience members take some nurturing to grow, so give them a little water and sunlight and they’ll grow into thriving, engaging members of your community.

Take the Time

Just like an taking the time to pick up the phone and call an old friend, you need to take the time to find out how your audience is doing! This can be accomplished by asking them, monitoring relevant hashtags, or by listening to what they’re flat out telling you. You can then gauge their feelings and talk to them appropriately. Talking to students during the summer is different than during finals week.

Truly Listen

I’ve talked about truly listening to your audience before, but I’m going for it again. Sometimes you think you know what a problem is, or what an audience member is referencing, but if you jump to conclusions you could miss someone’s point quite easily, especially if you’re on Twitter and have a 140-character post to work with. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, or take the conversation to email if you need more information to understand what your audience member is trying to tell you.

Engage

Your audience wants to know you care. In higher education, that can be as simple as congratulating newly admitted students, answering questions about when food locations are open during spring break, or offering to answer questions of prospective students. Tell your audience you’re there for them in whatever capacity they need.

Story Time

I heard University of Cincinnati’s @PrezOno speak at EduWeb last year, and he told a story about a student who was upset that the vending machine was out of Cheez its. He listened to the complaint, and said he would find out why the vending machine was empty. And he followed through. His audience understands that he’s there for them, and reaches out regularly. He provides a perfect example of how to listen and engage with your audience. You can see this and more of Santa Ono’s presentation in the SlideShare below:

 

Retweet After Me: Week of Feb. 25, 2014

Top 2014 #highered Web and Social Conferences & Events by Karine Joly

Every year I publish a post with my selection of top higher ed conferences and events. Since 2006 I’ve spent a lot time thinking, reviewing, attending and some time presenting at higher ed conferences. When you run a professional school like Higher Ed Experts, it’s important to stay on top of what happened in the conference world. As many of you only get to go to one conference per year due to limited budgets, many often ask me for recommendations about the best fit for their specific professional development needs. [Read More]

How to Do Holidays on Social Media Right by Elizabeth Harper

Every time a holiday or big event rolls around, we see companies trying to make holiday social-media tie-ins that can range from successful to strange. While it’s easy to make social blunders by trying to appropriate a holiday into a promotion, this doesn’t mean you need to stay quiet during any holiday season. As long as you know the holiday and your customer base, you can jump into the holiday chatter without making a mess — whether it’s Valentine’s Day this week or something else. [Read More]

14 Tools To Help You Add Images For Your Social Media Posts by Belle Beth Cooper

It wasn’t long ago that Twitter added inline image previews to its official apps, including the web view. Now, Twitter is including more image focus in the latest redesign, as you can see above. On the left-hand side of Twitter’s new web view, your profile and header images are now visible. [Read More]

Why and how to get access to Twitter Analytics for your #highered account by Karine Joly

Last week in the online course I teach about social media marketing for higher ed we discussed social media analytics strategy and practices with our class composed of professionals working in universities and colleges in the US, Canada and France. I’ve had updated the course module materials – as I always do before a session – to include the latest news and features my students should know about. And, I had decided to add, at the last minute, a link to Twitter Analytics. [Read More]

Good News for Creepers: LinkedIn Upgrades “Who Viewed Your Profile” Feature by Corey Eridon

I mean creepers in the most loving way. Some of my best friends are creepers. (Ask her, she won’t deny it.) We all know the “Who Viewed Your Profile” LinkedIn feature. It’s part of a little ego-exercise we take part in each week where we validate just how important we already know we are, and bask in the glory of being stalked by higher-ups that are definitely messaging us right now to offer us the job of a lifetime. [Read More]

Quotables: Zoe Barnes

With the release of season 2 of House of Cards, I thought a quote from the show would be a perfect fit. Don’t worry though, no spoilers here. But Zoe Barnes knows that social media can spread a message like wildfire, which is always a good thing to remember!

Social Media Lessons to Learn from the Olympics

The world is currently head over heels in love with the Olympics, and who can blame them? Sports most people don’t see except for every four years, high stakes, and rooting for your country! And NBC has their social media team going full force on the NBC Olympics social media channels, with lots of good tips and ideas for the rest of us!

Photos Win Facebook

There is not a post on NBC Olympics’ Facebook page that doesn’t have a photo. According to this Fast Company article, 93% of the most engaging posts on Facebook have photos. Not only does NBC use photos, but they also brand every last one of them with their blue border and Sochi logo, making sure that when it’s shared, the branding is still just as evident.

Spur of the Moment

NBC Olympics has done a great job of taking advantage of situations as they arise. Obviously, the nature of the Olympics means they are waiting for the perfect moments, from announcing a Gold Medal to featuring athletes as they prepare to start competing, so they are set up already to use the random things that they aren’t anticipating.

User-Generated Content

It’s an easy tactic, but no doubt it’s effective. Asking for your audience to participate in the fun by answering a question, submitting a photo or filling in a blank is a great way to encourage engagement. Also, you can’t go wrong with using the unsolicited content, that’s the stuff social media dreams are made out of!

Create Your Own “Meme”

Normally, I hate when I see this. Most of the time, I just don’t think it’s a great fit for the brand or the content they have used. Now, I know this isn’t technically a meme, but it has a meme-like feel by using big, to-the-point words, and showing one subject in the photo. However, since NBC didn’t try to make their content fit into an already existing meme, I actually really like it!

Artsy Fartsy

NBC obviously understands that Instagram is a little bit artsier than Facebook and Twitter, and their content on the channel has been just that.

Diversified Content

One of the most noticeable things when I was looking through NBC’s Olympics social media channels is how very different the content is on each channel.

Twitter is very centered around news-like content, such as events starting soon announcements, medal counts and winners and feature stories. But just because it’s more news focused, doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a personality!

Facebook is probably the most fun content they have. While all the other channels they are utilizing defintiely have a feeling of fun and excitement, their Facebook content takes it to the next level. They are posting things that are easy to share and the most exciting or stunning moments of the Olympics.

Instagram, as I already pointed out, is much more artsy. Because of this, it makes you think you’re getting an inside look at the Olympics: how the courses look before an event and practice runs.

What is your favorite part of Olympics social media coverage so far?

YouTube Comments Make Google+ Pages Even More Important

youtube-googleplus-comments

YouTube comments recently received a big upgrade, and there are quite a few changes, and definitely some that may alter brand management. YouTube is now much more connected to Google+, and that has implications, and hopefully opportunities!

Top Comments

While there has been a top comments section on YouTube, the comments listed aren’t always the most relevant to the video. But now comments on YouTube are personalized to you! Comments that are moved to the top are those by the video creator, YouTube “celebrities,” engaging discussions, and people in your Google+ circles. This helps to bring the most relevant comments to the top, and push the others down.

I also discovered that when you post a video to Google+, it automatically adds it as a comment on YouTube. Talk about an easy way to increase your chances for more engagement! I can definitely see how this would help conversations grow. I’m excited to see if it works!

Moderating

YouTube has caught up with the times on this front. Comments can now have auto-block for certain words, there are new tools for reviewing comments before they’re posted, and you can pick certain people to have comments auto-posted. Many more options available, to hopefully make moderating a bit easier! The auto-block feature is probably the one I’ll be implementing first, it’s a no brainer to me.

Merging Accounts

The catch: you must have a Google+ profile or page attached to your YouTube account. You can make this change in the settings of your YouTube account. If you want to connect a Google+ page, you’ll need to make your YouTube account a manager of the Google+ Page. If both are under the same account, you should be good to just connect them. This is where I ran into issues, as Texas Tech’s Google+ and YouTube weren’t under the same account. I found a glitch while trying to connect the two accounts, and my awesome Google+ Education Team rep assisted with the merging.

So what do you think? Are you excited for the accounts to be merged, or do you want Google+ to stay out of your YouTube?