There is a new Twitter worm that surfaced and is being spread via direct message on Twitter. To read more about the worm and how to protect yourself, click here.
Sorry it’s been a few days but there was some important security news yesterday so I needed to break from the online branding theme and talk about security for a day.
Although Twitter only allows you to input 140 characters, you can say a lot in that little space. Twitter is a great way to promote your website or your blog. If you post a new article on your website or write a new blog post, you can tweet a tag line and then link to your blog or site using a tinyurl. A tinyurl takes your website address or blog address and shortens it to take up less space on your tweet. By finding people in your industry or organizations that relate to your business on Twitter, you can get up to the minute news before you are able to receive it from traditional media outlets.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my mini series on online branding and promoting your company using new social media outlets. If you have anymore questions, feel free to comment or shoot me an e-mail.
Up to this point, we’ve talked about the importance of a website and a blog but now that I’m sure you’ve set those both up, how do you get people there. You can spend a bunch of money building a website and a lot of time writing a blog but if no one visits it, it’s pointless. One of the most effective way to direct people to your content is by using facebook. There are ways you can direct people for free and there are also paid advertising options you can use.
There are many different ways you can share your blog or website with people on facebook. Whether you share a blurb of a blog post on your status and link people to your blog or someone else shares a story that they find interesting, you can experience a spike in traffic if your blog is linked somewhere on the news feed. You can also create a group or a fan page for your business and use the group message feature to let everyone know about something new on your website. If your content is intriguing enough, facebook is a great way for you to grow exponentially. Facebook makes it very easy for you to share something with your friend and he or she to share it with their friends and on down the line. Make sure to friend all of your friends as well as business associates so when you do send out a message or change your status, a larger group of people are seeing that.
On the paid side, facebook ads is similar to Google Adwords but you can target your ads much more effectively. Whether you want to target high school kids who list music as one of their interests or you want to target people 25-40 who list traveling as an interest, you can do this on facebook. You can pay per click and it will allow you to easily track how many people you are directing to your website or blog through each specific advertising campaign. In my eyes, the main advantage of the paid ads is that you’re reaching everyone on facebook, not just the people you’re friends with.
Coming next: Promoting your brand using twitter
Blogs can be used for many purposes, humor, diaries, entertainment, news, or business. In this case, we’re only going to discuss how to use your blog to improve your business. By creating a blog and updating it with events you attend, new articles relevant to your customers, awards you win, or anything else you want your customers to know about, you create a central place for your customers and prospects to read your content. You can also start to establish yourself as an expert in your field by writing your own articles and distributing them via a blog. While blogging, it’s important to tag your blog and to link to any articles you quote. However, all of this is only worthwhile if people are reading your blog. In your overall online marketing strategy, you should plan on using e-mail, twitter and facebook to promote your blog. My next few blog posts will go into more depth about how to market your blog and website using facebook and twitter.
Coming Next: Using facebook to promote your brand
The first thing your company can do to establish your online brand is build a website. The most important thing to do when creating a website is determine who you are targeting and make it as easy as possible for that target to do what they want to do. If you are wanting to collect information from your user, don’t make them go to a back page to submit information, let them do that from the home page. If you want to deliver content to your user, let them get that easily. We have trained web surfers to be able to have information at their fingertips. If they go to your website and the information isn’t easily accessible, they will go somewhere else.
Many people think building a website or rebuilding an existing site is a huge expense and time consuming project. Although it is important to do it well, there are ways to do it inexpensively and without distracting you from your day to day operations. A personal favorite of mine is elance. Elance allows you to put a project out for bid and collect bids from freelance designers all over the world. This is a great way to find someone to create a website for you quickly and cost effectively.
Coming tomorrow: The Blog
I’m going to stray away from the “protecting your data” theme and and talk about how a business can control it’s image online and protect your brand identity. Recently we’ve seen businesses like Spiral 16 become extremely busy as companies become more concerned about what their clients and prospects are saying online. There are many things that contribute to your online brand and online marketing strategy but the most important in my eyes are a website, facebook, twitter, and a blog. It is important to use all of these tools to push your users to content and articles that you want them to read. If you aren’t actively marketing yourself or your product online, you rely on what others say and write to be what your customers and prospects read when they search for you online. Over the next few days, I’ll spend a few minutes writing a post about each one of the previously mentioned avenues of distribution and how you can use them to promote your company.