Posts Tagged ‘facebook’

Put your social media Sombrero on!

January 31, 2016

You will probably recognize the following scenario.  You enroll for a training or webinar to learn new things.  During the session there are a lot’s of tips and tricks you think you should implement but as you are keeping up with the pace, they get lost.  And then we all suffer from the “I will do it tomorrow” syndrome.  However, the next day we either forget or fall victim to our hectic business-as-usual where other fires have to be put out. Finally, we only implement less than 10% of what we learned.

I see this happening to too when people who learn all about LinkedIn or Social Media in trainings.  As a trainer it is frustrating that all your good tips & tricks were no implemented (in the spur on the moment).

sombreroRecently, I came across an interesting app called Sombrero which actually starts where you left of in your social media training.  This app acts as you guide and teacher but in small bits on a daily basis.  I tried the app myself first and then spoke with the people from Sotrender, the company behind this app.

 

Getting started is simple!

Installing the app is easy and so is setting it up.  Register your social media profiles like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and the small tasks start rolling in.  The nice thing is that the app takes babysteps as the task are simple and take very short time to complete.  The app gives you a real sense of accomplishment but still you are moving forward to professionalizing your social media presence.  True, if you are already active the first days/week might be boring but it provides some good benchmarking on where you are.

sombrero app

As you move along the timeline, tasks become a bit more challenging but reflect how you should be running your social media.  I found a great complement to my training program.

It is not all sunshine, of course!

What caught my attention is that there is bit of confusion around the target profiles: personal vs company profiles.  The app wants to serve both and it is not always clear which way it tilts.

Since I mostly focus on B2B, LinkedIn is a major component.  Unfortunately, this bit is missing today.   I understand it will be coming in next versions.

Another little drawback is the fact that it is an English-only version and my feeling tells me that the audience best served is not always used to work in English.

Must-do!

Since this app is free (and there is no catch) and very educational, I think you try it on your smartphone or tablet.  I am convinced that you will learn a thing or two even if you have some experience.  The app really delivers when it comes pushing your boundaries and boosting your online performance.

Let me know what you think!

 

Employee Advocacy in 9 questions?

November 27, 2015

I recently organized an event together with “ADM – Where Business meets ICT” on the subject of Employee Advocacy.  It is a hot topic for many companies as the low hanging fruit for brand ambassadors has not been picked yet.

Here is what members of ADM taught us.  The full list of questions are below in the appendix

Q1: What words come to mind when you hear the word “Employee Advocacy”?

Here is what the audience thought….

EA - 11

We all know that Employee advocacy” is a term used to describe the exposure that employees generate for brands & company using both their own online and offline assets.

Q2 – Q4 pertained to current Employee Advocacy

About 2 out 3 companies that took part in the on line survey during the event had a program in shape or form for EA.  Most of the Advocacy seemed to happen on LinkedIn (45%) while Twitter and Facebook came in 2nd with about 23%.   In most companies between 15% and 25% of employees are being advocates.

Q5: What Employee Advocacy programs do you know?

One thing that is clear is that even though there are many platforms out there, people seem to know few of them.

EA - 12

Q6 – Q8 pertained to who drives the EA initiative

Though marketing seems to be the biggest driver (46%), HR and communications are close seconds.  Even though we seem to hear that incentives are the key to successful EA, most of the companies in the survey disagreed.  Less than 30% offer incentives to their employees.

EA - 14

Now with Employee Advocacy comes the danger of having things go wrong so having a clear up to date social media policy is key.  As my other research has shown about 50% of companies are not paying attention and have no or an outdated social media policy.

Q9: Who is responsible for the content that will be shared through Employee Advocacy?

The obvious answer seems to be marketing but stories from and by employees seem to be the trick to successful EA.

Conclusion

If your company want to start with an Employee advocacy plan a few steps need to taken:

  1. Make sure you have a culture of sharing and openness
  2. Update your social media policy
  3. Have your employee create content
  4. Implement an employee advocacy platform
  5. Encourage sharing through a smart incentive plan

What are your thoughts, feedback and experiences? Love to hear from you

EA - 13

Appendix: questions asked to about 70 companies during the event

  1. What words come to mind when you hear the word “Employee Advocacy”?
  2. Does your company have an Employee Advocacy program?
  3. On what platforms is your advocacy happing?
  4. What % of your employees participate in advocacy?
  5. What EA platform are you using or know of?
  6. Which department drives EA?
  7. Are people incentivized for being an advocate?
  8. Do you have an updated social media policy?
  9. Who is responsible for creating content to be shared via EA?

When the whale washes up on the beach…

November 5, 2015

The last few weeks it has been raining negative messages around Twitter.  But what if the Twitter whale really washed up on the beach what would the consequences?

twitter whale

Loss of employment

The first group of people impacted are those companies that make tools to slice and dice Twitter.  There will be a lot of blood flowing on the floor.  From monitoring platforms to posting platform and tools of all other kinds.  I see you thinking: “It is only startups and who cares? But it is not only a large number of startups that would go out of business overnight but also some of the big players would get hurt and have to let go of people.  Not to mention companies using these tools.

klout

OMG! The Klout score could really disappear for real.

Companies and Organizations

Twitter has been the tool that many companies have used to provide customer service and/or get close to the r customers.  All of a sudden they would lose their eyes and ears on their community,  Back to phone canvassing or trying to move the communities to one of the remaining platforms.  Let’s be honest, you don’t want the twitter type conversations on LinkedIn or even Facebook as a company.

Twitter users

people tweetingAnd how about the users of Twitter.  They would have so much time on their hands.  No more checking their influencers (an retweeting or pressing like), no more content curation, no more personal branding tweets to be sent, no more customer service complaints, etc. just to name a few.  What would they do with all this regained time?

Let’s be real, Twitter washing up on the beach would mean that we are left with only 2 real networks.  Google+ has been catching rays on the beach for a while now.  Would Tweeps really move to LinkedIn and/or Facebook with their content and messages?

What a nightmare that would be for both the platforms, companies and users.  I can’t image what messages on LinkedIn will look like or how the amount of spam in LinkedIn groups will spiral as the (professional) influencers from Twitter flock to LinkedIn.  What if more people started to complain about company services  and products on Facebook (or LinkedIn for that matter)…  Could customer service really move to Facebook? I guess Not!

Conclusion

twoogleThe long and short is that Twitter is likely not to disappear, so stop whining and spreading negative news.  I kind of want to  come back to my predictions for 2015 in the sense that if Google with Google+ (They have the users) and Twitter (they have the content) should team up (Twoogle?) they can be a counterweight to the two protagonists.  I wonder…

The Renaissance of the social media policy

October 15, 2015

Let’s start in 2009

2009 is the year that social media breaks through on a large scale.  Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and the likes are adding members quickly.  I would like to call this the age of “consumersation of Social Media”.

social media errorsBut 2009 is also the year that we start seeing how naif people are.  They post anything and everything on social media.  They tarnish not only their own reputation but also that of the companies they work for.  Some even get fired for their behavior.  But also companies make mistakes with this young and new medium.  And then companies do what companies do best: the lock down and lockout social media on the work floor!

They did however not count on the fact that mobile was also becoming a  commodity. People creative as they are fled to these mobile devices to take part in social media during work hours.   Companies had to do something: The social media policy was born!

2011 – 2012

one in fiveWhen I did my survey about social media policies in companies, I found that only 1 in 5 companies had one.  Even worse: within those companies less than 10% of the employees knew about it.  This still holds true today.  Social Media policies were merely a tick in the box.

Companies only made one when disaster struck.  They created them as insurance policies.

2015:  Time for a social media policy renaissance

We are now 2015 and there 3 important reasons why companies should revisit their social media policy or create one.

3 reasons socmedpol

Reason #1: We all know that 2015 is the year of the video more specifically live-streaming.  Apps such as Meerkat, Periscope or even Blab give every employee a live camera in their hand.  What if they start live streaming your production process?  What if they stream paying events?  And this is just the beginning.

Reason #2: For years companies have been looking for ambassadors.  They kept looking outside the company and forgot their biggest assets, the employees.  Today Employee Advocacy is stepping into the limelight.  Employees can amplify company approved content and get a higher organic reach.  Today companies are using a number of tools from rFactr, over GaggleAmp to Sociabble or Smarpshare just to name a few.  But what if your employee add comments to post that are not appropriate?

Reason #3: More and more companies are embracing Social Selling (aka the use of social media by sales to find leads and build relationships).  We all know how disciplined sales people are and things can go wrong very quickly (and yes, this is black & white).  You really need a policy to help this people with their social media.

And finally, people are still naif in this day and age.  They are still being fired for posting stupid stuff.

So time for the renaissance of the social media policy.  If yours is more than 2 years old, it is time for a revision.

Conclusion

From my current research, it looks like about 50% of the companies have as policy of which some are more than 2 years old.  With social election in many companies coming up, it might be a good idea to include some paragraphs about union behavior and use  of social within your enterprise.

In my next article I will focus on the how you make/update your current social media policy.

What you always wanted to know about when to post on Facebook and LinkedIn

April 9, 2015

One of the biggest challenges on social media is when to post  to get maximum reach.  There is maybe one simple trick that will tell you when your connections and contacts are online: your birthday!  Or better, when people wish you a happy birthday which means they are online.  Time for me to do an experiment…

experiment

A few days ago (April 7th) it was my birthday. I took this opportunity to get an insight into when my contacts, friends and followers posted and mailed their best wishes.  The sample size is a few hundred messages (about a third of my complete network) which is representative for my network on LinkedIn and Facebook.  Twitter is the odd one out.

Here is what I observed:

LinkedIn

On LinkedIn messages started as of 2.21AM (A late night worker?).  However the real stream started at 5.54 AM but with a first peak between 8AM and 9AM.  The next burst came between 10 AM and noon.  As of lunch the mails dropped down considerably but evened out over the afternoon and evening.

linkedin posts

2 conclusions from these statistics and the fact that my network is evenly spread between Europe and the USA,

  • I can conclude that far more Belgians and Europeans than Americans use the tab “Keep in Touch”.
  • Also, my European network is stronger than my US network.

Facebook

On Facebook it started at 1AM (okay, that was someone who was up late😉 ) but the real postings in Belgium started at 6AM.  The first strong push was between 7AM  and 8 AM slowly dropping down towards 9AM. However, my Spanish contacts got active at after 9AM.

facebook post

The highest activity was measured in the afternoon starting at noon and going up from there.  Things slowed down after 5PM.  Here, I must admit, my network is more Belgian based than internationally.

Twitter

Amazingly enough, twitter only started at 9AM but that is because Twitter does not send people messages when it is your birthday.  Here too the biggest number (how few those were) happened in the 2PM -5PM timeslot. But the number of messages is too small to make any real statement about when to post.

Conclusion

It is clear that if I want to reach my target audience posting between 7AM and 8AM (before work) and/or Noon – 5PM (at work?) are good times on Facebook.  LinkedIn seems to be used by my contacts in the morning  between 8 and noon.  As far as Twitter is concerned I have no conclusive data to make any recommendation.

What do you think? Does this hold true for you too?  How do you really know?

I can do it too! 3 outrageous prediction for 2015.

January 2, 2015

madame soleilAs one year comes to and end and the new year is about to start, we find ourselves in the time when annual reviews and 2015 predictions are plenty.  I am slowly getting fed up with large number of posts about the future.  BTW, which of the 2014 prediction come true?  No one really checks.

It seems everyone has a crystal ball and is a futurologist or trend watcher.  Where did the time go when Madame Soleil was the person to go to to get predictions for the new year.  Nostalgia… I guess I must be a romantic.

Enough of “Video will be the preferred content form” or “Content Marketing finally matures” or “Everything mobile”!  I do not want to hear this anymore, but under the mantra “if you can’t beat them, join them”, here is my spin on the predictions for 2015:

My 3 outrageous predictions for 2015!

crystal-ball

Facebook will disappear this year!

For the last year or so, we have heard more and more people saying they want to stop their Facebook account because of the ever changing privacy rules or abundant advertising .  But guess what?  Facebook is not stupid and saw this coming.  So they are launching Facebook for Business now.  More constant and better money flow? Great move on their behalf except that most people use Facebook for private use (not business) and are shutting down their account.  Why should companies get started on Facebook for Business. I guess death will quick.

Google+ finally gets off the ground

All those sleeping Google+ users (Gmail users, Android phone users, YouTube-ers, Bloggers, et al) finally realize they already have a Google+ account. Moreover, since they are running away from Facebook, Google+ becomes the next safe haven where their friends will be posting their personal updates.  And yes, privacy is much better and less advertising.  So getting to 1.6 billion members in 2015 will be a piece of cake.  Sorry Ello.co or seen.it.

Microsoft buys LinkedIn

I can see you shake your head but think about it.  Microsoft already owns the largest Enterprise Social Network (Yammer) which focusses on the intra-company social media so it make sense to add an external social media network to it.  Business meets Business.  And yes, Microsoft has the cash to burn.  A marriage made in heaven for professional social media and networking.  The benefit for LinkedIn will be that finally the company pages really get developed to create more value to the business users.

What do you think? Do you agree with any of these outrageous social media predictions? Do you have any you’d like to share? Please share your comments below.

How social is the CIO-of-the-Year 2014?

October 1, 2014

The end of the year is slowly on the horizon.  And with that come numerous competitions for “best in class”.  One of these is the Datanews “CIO of the Year” competition.

CIO of the yearSometime ago (august) the list of the top 10 nominees was published.  Each of the nominees was selected for having a good vision, strategic insight, leadership qualities and personality.  And then is was up to the the public to vote who will be in the top 3!  The winner will be crowned on November 20th in Brussels.

I started wondering how these CIO’s would go about promoting their candidacy for the top 3.  One great place to do this is social media.  Think of the success of #TVVV or #BGT.   Since I had some reasearch (blogpost of April 2011) a long while back, I decided to take another look on social media.  After all these years I expected the presence to be much improved.  But no, it was again (still?) staggering to see their presence is very limited.

LinkedIn

All CIO’s have a reasonable complete profile and good amount of contacts.  However, few have discovered the functionality of sharing a Status Update which could be formidable weapon in their quest to become one of the Top 3 CIO’s.

Only one CIO noticed that I visited their profile and wanted to connect.  The rest did not even click back.  Well I guess who will get my vote.

Twitter

7 out of the 10 do have a twitter account which  I think is great. When it comes to tweeting few have masterd the art.  They all remain under 300 tweets (all-time) and 50% have not tweeted at all.  I just wonder if they know who is following they.

Facebook

Half the CIOs are on facebook. And of those who are, none of them have protected their friends and/or pictures.  I would have thought they of all people would know something about privacy.

Google+

CIO’s seem not to missed Google+ completely.  I think 3 have discovered it probably by accident but their profile lack content and general information.  It is as good as empty.  But then again, Google+ is considered to be the desert among social media platforms.  Maybe CIO’s will move directly to ello.co?

Other platform

When it comes to leadership one would hope that CIO’s run a blog but unfortunately, I was not able to find one.  Neither do they have a slideshare account or YouTube channel.  But one could say this is only for marketing.

cio logo
CIO messages2

Conclusion

Even though their companies are using social media heavily, CIO’s themselves still have not discovered Social Media – the cloud applications that outrun any other application domain.  It is clear that Social Media will have a minimal bearing on the winning of votes to be among the top 3.  This was a sad conclusion on most of the profiles of the 10 CIO’s

 

How Often? When? And How Many?

August 31, 2014

social-media-crazyThere are all kinds of statistics around about when to post where and with what frequency in order to reach as many people as possible.  Over the course of the summer, I conducted a survey among my LinkedIn contacts, Twitter followers and Facebook friends to understand their social media behaviour.  Here are the results.

Twitter

Check Frequency: 45% check Twitter mulitple times per day.  Add another 17% that checks it daily.

Check Peak:  The prime moments for checking Twitter seems to be during and after work hours (over 70% for both categories).  The morning seems to show the lowest activity and so do breaks.

Post Frequency: There is a wide spread which is linked to the large number of lurkers on Twitter.  However, it seems that 43% tweet 1-3/week,.  27% do it between 1 and 3 times per day.  Less than 10% tweet more than 5 times per day.

LinkedIn

Check Frequency: The use of LinkedIn for more than HR purposes is driving up the frequency with which people check LinkedIn.  With over 35% checking multiple times/day and 29% daily we give LinkedIn a thumbs up. Amazingly enough 2% never visits their profile while the rest checks it once a month.

Check Peak: As can be expected with a “professional” networking platform, most people access it during the work day.  An amazing 80% do it during work hours.  Breaks, mornings and evenigs do not seem to be  so popular.  It si considered work.

Post Frequency: From experience I know people do not do many Status Updates on LinkedIn.  The survey confirmed this again with 27% never posting and 33% only once a month.  Less than 11% post daily on LinkedIn.

Facebook

Check Frequency: As expected over 65% check their Facebook multiple times per day.  Adding the 17% of daily checkers and we can conclude we are addicted to Facebook!

Check Peak: Here too, not many surprises except the fact that before breakfast does not do so well.  The highest peak lies in the evening after work.

Post Frequency: Since facebook has the highest degree of “lurkers” it is not surprising that weekly (42%) and daily (31%) post are the dominant numbers here.

Google what?

Yet again, Google+ demonstrates its ability to stay under the radar.  Even though there are so many accounts (gmail users, android users, picasa users, youtube user, etc.) few people are even aware they have a G+ account.  More that 60% never visit the account with another 10% that don’t even know they have such an account.

Conclusion

Though this research did not reveal anything dramatic, it confirms that LinkedIn is the professional tool of choice and tolerated in the workplace; Facebook the lurking tool into our realm of friends and brands; Twitter the platform no one really knows what to think of; and Google+ that special place in the desert!

How does your social media behaviour fit in with these results?

Here is the graphic representation of these survey results.

Social Media Access (1)

What is your Twitter clockspeed?

July 22, 2014

timer social mediaSalespeople are embracing social selling.  There are a lot of benefits to adding social to your traditional sales process which has been covered in many different articles.  These articles cover things such as researching your clients, content curation, relationship building and even lead generation.

After doing some research of where your target audience is , creating social (selling) profiles is easy.  Especially with all the good advice, tips and tricks you can find on the internet.  But then the next dilemma’s  arrive on the scene: what content to post where, how many posts and how much time will this take?

Of course, there is no unique and one answer to these questions.  There are some articles out there that say you will be spending 20 – 60 minutes per day, but is that realistic?  Looking at the forerunners of social selling might give us some more insight.  Where better to look for inspiration on the above questions than to the list with the Top 30 Social Salespeople.  Today, I will focus on what they do on Twitter.

Quantity

There are many posts about how many times you should tweet per day.  One thing that seems to jump out is that the quantity seems to be going up.  In the past it was once a day but today the number is likely going up to 3 to 8 tweets a day.  This includes of course your tweets, retweets and replies to others.

But how many are our experts averaging?  A quick analysis gives us a range between 4 and 36 tweets per DAY!  The average being 17.  One of the reasons why this number could high is because these experts are taking part in twitter chats and are much solicited by their “fans” but that could also be considered as social selling.

Digging a little deeper, it seems they are tweeting every day of the week with Saturday and Sunday at a 1/3 or less of the weekday volume.  And most tweet around the clock with a real dip around 2-5 AM.  I assume this has to do with their worldwide audience and their use of scheduling tools.

And then there is the lifespan of a tweet.  After some digging I found that this varies between 10 and 18 minutes.

Conclusion: There is, of course, no exact number but it seems that you need to tweet 10+ times/day or otherwise said “once every hour” during the workday. And possibly 3 times/day during the weekend.

Content Structure

How-To-Write-The-Perfect-TweetThere is no such thing as a perfect tweet, but common knowledge has it that every tweet should have a good text with a call to action, a link to more content and one or more hashtags.  To make the tweet complete, you might add a twitter handle as part of a reply or general mention.

Unfortunately, most tweets do not adhere to this scheme.  Our experts manage include a link to more content in about 15% to 90% of their tweets. The average being one tweet out of two having a link.  When it comes to the use of hashtags, we see a similar behavior.  The experts average between 0 and 4 hashtags per tweet.

Conclusion: Every tweet you send out should have at least one or possibly 2 hashtags.

Time investment

So how much time do you spend tweeting?  The 2 above topics can give us some indication on how much time you will be spending per day.  Since there is no real science to this, here are some of my thoughts

  • Tweet 12-15 x day
  • Every other tweet has a link to additional content and a good hashtag.
  • Average time to create and send out a tweet: 1 minute (and yes this can vary) but keep in mind that some thought needs to go into the text, call to action and hashtag(s) to use.
  • If you include a link in your tweet or you retweet a tweet with a link, you need make sure you have read the content of the link which I will count as 1 minute per link. Since half the tweets contain links this will consume some time.

Conclusion: Taking the above bullet points into account, you will spend 20 minutes or more per day on your outgoing tweets.

And there is more

Of course, sending out tweets (like sending out email content) is only the beginning of the integration of social into your sales process.  You will be investing time into listening, content reading /curation and actual relationship building.  More to follow in future posts.

So how much time do you think you invest into your social selling routine?

The 10-60-30 Rule of Social Selling

April 12, 2014

If Social Selling is all about Connecting, Listening and Content Sharing, then getting started on Social Media can be a daunting task. Have you ever wondered which tools you could/should be using? And more importantly, how much time you need to spend on it. Here is my take (and experience) on it.

connect - listen - share

Connecting
Social Networking platforms are made for connecting. Here you will find the obvious candidates such as LinkedIn and Twitter. However, Xing and Viadeo might be good alternatives in the German and French speaking markets. Not everyone is on LinkedIn. In a B2B situation, Facebook seems the last option social sellers jump on. But since so many people have a profile here, it might make sense to link here too but you need a clear strategy on what and how to share. The inevitable discussion between personal and professional lives.

Finding and connecting new prospects and clients are here clearly the marching orders. Nothing new so far. Make discovering new contacts part of your daily routine.

Listening
Here it becomes a little more complicated and time consuming. There are at least 2 reasons for monitoring: understanding what your contacts are saying/doing/interested in and finding interesting content to share in the content sharing stage.

Listening to what your contacts are saying can be done through Hootsuite and LinkedIn Saved Searches, while finding content could be done through Google Alerts, LinkedIn Pulse, Feedly or any other RSS feeder program.

How much time you will be spending on this part of your social selling routine will vary a lot depending on the number of contacts, the activity level of those contacts, the variety of topics you are following and how much reading you will be doing yourself.

Content Sharing
Content is everywhere on the internet but prime locations are Slideshare, YouTube (or Vimeo), Blogs and Forums. Once you have that content you will want to share it. Tools such as Buffer or Hootsuite.

Additionally to sharing interesting content from others (less than 40% of all your content) you will need to create. You might create presentations, blog posts and general status updates/tweets. Let me be clear that this is a time intensive task and thus easily postponed. Once you created your own content you will want to share this with your contacts via Status Updates and Tweets.

Finally, through the monitoring and listening programs you will also find more opportunities to engage with and help your clients and prospects. Your entrance ticket to become a trusted advisor.

Again, it is hard to put a number on this when it comes to time spent. Do not consider this lost time but think how much time you saved by not having to drive to your client to have a conversation.

10-60-30 Rule of Social Selling
Social Selling is more about the approach rather than the use of a number of tools (see above). Over the course of time, this has evolved into a daily routine. My experience has demonstrated that the different steps and tools must be interwoven with everything you do during the day.

Today I can say that I spend about 10% of my time working on the connecting bit. 60% reviewing what my listening tools unearth in terms of client conversations and content. And I must admit that most of the time goes to reading and qualifying whether this information can be shared to provide more value to the clients (and me, of course). Finally, 30% is the actual sharing and personal content creation.

So how does your social selling routine stack up?


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