Posts Tagged ‘linkedin’

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?

50 Shades of Content for your LinkedIn Company Profile

March 15, 2015

linkedin compWhether you like it or not sharing content on your LinkedIn company profile will help your company’s visibility and allow its employees to share valuable company approved content via their personal profile.  However, most companies and people have no idea what to share.  Therefore I have brought together these 50 posts from 33 companies and organisations as a source of inspiration on what to share on LinkedIn.  When you take a look at this list, I am convinced you will not be able to say that you have no content to share anymore.

LinkedIn company pages are essential for branding and for building and sustaining a following and community. LinkedIn is providing B2B companies with a unique opportunity to present themselves as thought leaders and generate meaningful conversation about their businesses. Sharing the above content will increase readership, create visibility and encourage employees to share the content in their professional network.

So what are you waiting for to post every day on your LinkedIn company profile?

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.

You really want me to pay for LinkedIn?

November 15, 2014

paying for Linkedin I recently read yet another article about 8 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade To LinkedIn Premium.

Though I am not against paying for LinkedIn I believe you should be stretching it first to its limits before you do pay.  I find that a lot of people are paying where they shouldn’t or as they are not using the extra functionality.  Let me give you some insight into why I think you should not pay…

Additional Filters

I agree with the fact that the advanced search of LinkedIn is very powerful.  If and when you are working in a smaller type market (Belgium with 2.3 million members), these extra parameters are of no value.

Tip : just use the keyword search to get better results.  You will not be disappointed.

More Search Results

Okay, you can see more than 100 profiles which means that your search is not specific enough.  Let’s be honest you do not have the time or even energy to scroll through 30 screens.  You are not doing this on Google search so why would you do it on LinkedIn.

Tip: Be more specific in your search criteria.

More saved searches

There is something to be said about that were it not that few people (that I know or  have been in my classes) even know about this function.  It is very powerful to detect who in your network has changed his/her profile and now falls into your “target audience”.

Tip: set up your 3 saved searches

Do more reference searches

To my knowledge few people are even coming close to using this function.  Heck, most of them have not even discovered where this button is.  And let’s be real, in my neck of the world people ask you who to contact as reference.

Tip: Get some recommendations and endorsements of your skills. You could add to your summary that you are willing to provide references (if needed).

Inmails

Of course, this is one of the high flyers when it comes to paying for LinkedIn.  Is sending emails to someone you do not know really such a good idea or practice? And by-the-way, did you know that you can send an email to anyone for free?

Tip: Just join one of the groups that person belongs to and your email is free!

More Introductions

Yet another one of LinkedIn’s biggest secrets.  Like in real life you can be introduced by someone you mutually know.  The quality of the network of many LinkedIn members is very good so they can do this type of introductions. Great feature but rarely used.  I rarely get a request (which I gladly pass along – try me!) even though I do have a large network.   Since this feature is hardly known few use up the 3 introductions.

Tip: Use your monthly 3 free introductions and be open to pass introduction.

Free subscription

See full profiles of 1st, 2nd and 3rd degree contact

Yes, it can be frustrating not to see the details of your 3rd degree contacts.  However, these people have a public profile which can be easily found back through a simple google search.  All you have to do is enter the First name, initial and company and Google will give you the public LinkedIn profile.  Here you will find the full story.  Have you ever tried?

Tip:  Try a Google Search on one of your 3rd degree contacts.

Who viewed your profile

Yet another top reason to pay for LinkedIn.  You can see everyone who visited your profile in the last 90 days.  Do you have any idea how many people visit your profile on a daily?  I dare to tell me it is over 5 which is what you see when you have a free subscription.  And no, you will nog see more from the anonymous people who view your profile.

Tip: Check your “Who viewed your profile” daily and you will catch all viewers.

Open profile

Are you really waiting for unknown people to send you emails on LinkedIn?

Tip: Just mention you email address in your summary or make visual on your public profile

The gold Badge (Premium)

Well, what a vain person are you?

Tip: Be less vain!

Conclusion

Unless you are a recruiter or salesperson working in a very large community, it makes no sense to pay for LinkedIn.  Stretch the free version of LinkedIn to its limits  before you decide to pay.  Yes, I have recently signed up for a premium account for Sales Navigator.  As part of my social selling practice, I need to appraised of its functionality.  The jury is out whether this will actually bring me the so much awaited ROI.  Will keep you posted on my results!

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)

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?

Why “Who viewed my profile” on LinkedIn is crap!

March 13, 2014

When you use linkedIn we all love the feature “Who has viewed our profile”.  Though this is a key feature on LinkedIn and in a social selling approach, it is also a great source of frustration.

But first something else I am wondering about connected to “Who has viewed your profile”.  Recently I saw a post that someone who completes their “Summary” get 10x more views on LinkedIn.  Watch out there is a catch which I will come to later.  For now, no one nor any article can explain me if this is true or why?  Of course, I believe you need to complete this section in your profile since it is your evelator pitch.  But what the effect is on being found, I do not really get.  Well secretly, I do.  Anyone (from LinkedIn) care to comment and back it up with proof?

And now for my catches.

LI - profile view

LinkedIn is all  about networking.  And still people decide they want to remain semi-anonymous or anonymous.  It is my experience these people are either my competitors or recruiters.  I can’t t get my head around the fact they are not open to being identified.  I wonder if they go to real life network meetings with a bag over their head or hand you a business card from someone else?  Strange!  I guess they have a good reason which I fail to understand, but that is my problem and yes, my frustration.  Let me tell you I will let you know if I viewed your profile and who knows maybe we can help eachother!  That is the true nature of networking and LinkedIn.

LI anonymous

But recently I ran across another interesting  issue.  The count of people who viewed my profile seems to be different depending on the language interface I use.  Below is a screenshot of my profile views using the english (342) and dutch (559) interface.  Very strange indeed.  It seems LinkedIn makes me more popular in NL than EN. And yes, they are the same people.   Out goes my trust in LinkedIn statistics!  Anyone care to enlighten me?

LI - EN-NL views

Let me be clear, I am a LinkedIn addict and believer but sometimes we need to step back to put it all into perspective.  Of course, I will continue to use the “who viewed my profile” to reach out to people and conduct business.  I love to hear your views and comments!

6 Social Media things to do before breakfast

January 25, 2014

When you get involved in social media, you quickly learn that it requires regularity and discipline.  Creating a daily routine is of course one of the best ways to approach this.  Over time I have together a 30-minute routine.

Source: www.socialbel.com

Here are the things I do before breakfast:

  1. Email
    1. Delete uninteresting/unwanted emails.
    2. Mark emails to be treated during the workday.
    3. Answer urgent emails.
    4. Check emails from LinkedIn groups for good content and mark for later reading.
    5. Review Google Alerts and mark interesting items with GetPocket.
  2. Social media monitoring
    1. Review social media monitoring dashboard and react appropriately.
    2. Go to Hootsuite and review monitoring columns and react appropriately.
  3. LinkedIn
    1. People Who viewed your profile is a perfect opportunity to start a conversation or even get connected (selectively).
    2. Contacts show people that have a New job, Birthday or Work Anniversary.  This again is a great opportunity to start a conversation.
    3. Review LinkedIn Inbox for messages and connection requests.
  4. Twitter
    1. Check tweets that mention me and act appropriately
    2. Check new followers out
    3. Check who unfollowed me and decide on course of action (recapture or accept)
    4. Quickly review the recent Tweet stream
  5. Facebook & Google+
    1. Check personal and company timelines for posts from friends and fans
    2. Wish friends a Happy Birthday
    3. Check messages and take action if needed
  6. Content sharing
    1. Share my quote of the day or content from others across a number of platforms
    2. Contribute and share content through my Tumblr blog on Social Media tools

Having created this routine, I am able to start my day informed, organized and inspired.   Since I have created this morning, I have also developed a similar approach for the evening routine.  The evening routine focuses more on content generation but I will discuss this in another blog post.

Do you have a similar routine? Why not share it through the comments below.  Or do you want details about any of the steps mentioned in my routine, send me a mail (mic@vanguard-leadership.be)

13 Social Media Tools you should use as a consultant in 2014

December 27, 2013

Social-Media-ToolsOver the course of the years we have seen an explosion of social media networks and tools.  Though most of these tools come in Freemium, most of us continue with the free version.   Here is a list of tools  – and I will exclude Twitter and LinkedIn since most of you are using these anyway-  you should be using if you are trying to make your life simpler while using social media.

1. Hootsuite (www.hootsuite.com )

Whether you are managing, monitoring or posting (planning) messages, Hootsuite is the tool that allows you to manage 5 profile for free (my suggestions: personal Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn accounts plus your Facebook page and LinkedIn Company page).

2. Google Alerts (www.google.com/alerts )

To complete your social media monitor you could set up a number of Google Alerts to get informed when Google has indexed more articles within your search criteria (your area of expertise, News, Video’s, etc.) . This is an ideal source to find content to share with your audience or leads

3. Buffer (www.bufferapp.com )

As a consultant you are probably reading a lot of blogs or articles.  Posting and sharing this information all at the same time is not a good idea.  Buffer will help you out by allowing you to schedule posts from theses articles themselves over 10 time slots during the course of the day on 3 social media platforms for free.

4. Commun.it (www.commun.it )

If you are a Twitter user, understanding and managing your audience is key.  Keep track of your new followers, who to unfollow, who to engage, etc. is good to know but what really stands out is to know who is no longer following you.  Commun.it and some other tools will provide you with the answer.  You can re-engage them and recapture your unfollowers.

5. WordPress (www.wordpress.com )

Consultants have  a lot of knowledge which could position themselves as a thought leaders.  You are probably trying to get into the press to get visibility with your target audience and it does not always work out every month.  So why not auto-publish and start your own blog.  Sharing your views, best practices, tips and tricks are great ways to get recognized for your knowledge.

6. Slideshare (www.slideshare.net)

Giving presentations and training sessions are part of your life.  Uploading your presentations to Slideshare will not only boost your SEO, but also create thought leadership and even generate leads.  It is also a great source to find information about your area of expertise or about your clients.

7. YouTube (www.youtube.com )

People like to see their consultants at work. Nothing works better than videos.  Using Instagram, Vine or just your smartphone you can create a good sample of what you do.  Posting these videos of presentations, training sessions or workshops will create the necessary trust to get invited for a sales pitch.

8. Google+ (www.googleplus.com )

You are for or against G+.  I am all in favor because the Hangouts are a powerful tool for communicating with clients.  Using these Hangouts you can not only save yourself from driving a lot of miles to visit your clients but also have face to face contacts and share data/presentations/et al from your PC in a streamlined way.  It can also be a great collaboration platform between fellow consultants working on the same projects.  A wonderful timesaver

9. Doodle (www.doodle.com )

Setting up meetings via email and/or phone can be very time consuming, so let Doodle help you find the ideal time to meet.  Yet another timesaver.

10. Dropbox (www.dropbox.com )

Sharing files has never been easier, using Dropbox you can share files between your own devices (PC/Smartphone/Tablet) but also between clients or peers.  There are of course alternatives such as Google Doc, Skydrive, Googgle Drive, etc.  These applications can also be used for making a backup of your data.

11. Evernote (www.evernote.com)

One of the apps I have come to appreciate over the course of the last year is Evernote.  Taking notes has never been easier.  The notes are synchronized between your devices so which ever device your bring to the meeting you have the latest meeting report on you.

12. Zapier/IFTTT (www.zapier.com & www.ifttt.com)

Though I am not a big fan of automating my social media activity, I have found that Zapier and IFTTT do have a place in my modus operandi.  It can automate the repetitive tasks I would do anyway.  And yes, they are people who are against this

13. Wunderlist (www.wunderlist.com)

If you are a bit like me you have a number of to do lists, As with Evernote, I have come to appreciate Wunderlist as a cross-device platform to keep track of all those tasks I need to accomplish.

Of course, the list does not end here.  There is always a bit of a trade-off between how much time you need to spend using the tool and how much ROI it provides.  Which other one’s are you using to make your social media life simpler or more complete.


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