Thanks for joining me for the third week of Ask Me Monday! I have had a lot of fun looking through questions and preparing the answers. This week I am also really happy to say that a few of the questions are from my family members! I did not encourage them in the slightest way to ask me questions; they asked on their own! My sister, in particular, asked a great question which I cannot wait to share and then answer for you all! Her question came about when the two of us were in the car together. I was playing with my phone, my sister looked over at me and said, “Ooh, I have an Ask Me Monday question.” I was pretty shocked and impressed!
Q: What is Instagram? (This is my sister’s question.)
A: I love this question! I am a fairly new Instagram user but I am really hooked on the network. A friend of mine encouraged me to start using it as a way to connect with people who like taking similar types of photos as I do. Additionally, I use it for my dog, Raegan, and it has been very helpful in building HER social media network. It has been very easy for us to find photos of other dogs and to connect via photography instead of by content such as tweets. The app can be installed on the iPhone and with the click of a button, fun and quirky photos can be shared instantaneously to Flickr, Facebook and Twitter. The app currently has over a dozen filters. After you take your photo, you can click on a filter (or share it as normal) to make your photo a little more unique and artistic. You can do searches for specific types of photos. If, for instance, you work in the fashion industry, you can do searches for photos that have the keyword “fashion” when the photo was uploaded. For this reason, I try to use strong keywords (such as Labradoodle) in my photo uploads. This way, I will draw followers who have an interest in Labradoodles and will be likely to interact and connect. If you sign up for Instragram, be sure to connect with me!
Q: How long does it usually take to assess whether or not a social media strategy is working? (This is my DAD’S question!)
A: I would always give a social media strategy at least six months. Strategies involve a lot of trial and error and no two campaigns are exactly the same. A factor to keep in mind is that different brands have a different standard for what they consider social media “success.” Some only want to see more sales but others define success as having a consistently growing number of Facebook fan page likers or Twitter followers because, to them, this means that the content is being seen by more eyeballs. Overall, I would not make any decisions about success before the six to nine month mark.
Q: I want to use Twitter more often, but sometimes find it more trouble than it’s worth trying to figure it out! How do you link your tweets to your Facebook so that you don’t have to post in both places?
A: Do not be overwhelmed; linking is very easy. I MUST caution you, though. If you are going to become a frequent Twitter user, I would not link ALL of your tweets to Facebook because this might flood your friends’ news feeds. I definitely post more on Twitter than I do on Facebook and I cannot even imagine what my news feed would look like if I saw all of my contacts’ tweets there. There is a good chance that I would block the Twitter app which is something that I REALY would not want to do and it would defeat the purpose. Check out Twitter’s page on how to add Twitter to Facebook. The steps are fairly easy. If you get stuck, please let me know. There is another way that you can connect Twitter to Facebook via an application called Selective Tweets. This app allows you to specify which tweets you want shared on Facebook. I would recommend using this if you are going to tweet regularly. Again, if you need guidance, please let me know!
Q: What has been your most valuable network for finding new clients?
A: I love all social media but I have to say that a bulk of my focus is with Facebook. I have done the most consulting projects through connections that I have made on Facebook. I think that Facebook is an extremely valuable platform and the opportunities on it are endless. Facebook was designed for relationship-building and while the paid contracts might not be generated within a day or two of meeting someone, it is an excellent platform for establishing yourself as a professional who people will know, like and trust. THIS is what leads to sales. I have also connected with great people on Twitter but as far as paying clients go, Facebook has been the magic bullet for me!
Again, thank you for your questions. I have a lot of fun answering them and I hope that the answers help you with your understanding of social media. Next week, as usual, will feature another Ask Me Monday so please submit your questions! What do YOU want to know about social media and online branding?