4 Reasons Why You Should Be Tweeting

4 Reasons You Should Be Tweeting

Have you ever attended a networking event where you felt the excitement in the air? You eagerly moved around the room making small talk and swapping business cards. You made the most of your time introducing yourself and your services. You hopefully also did a lot of listening.

This process is similar to the excitement I experience daily on Twitter, but without the business attire and handshake.

Following thought leaders, starting or jumping in conversations, listening, sharing knowledge, and taking action are key strategies to successfully networking on Twitter. Like any in-person cocktail party or conference, you can use Twitter to get ahead in your career.

Yes, Twitter can be a powerful and exciting space if you understand its benefits and how to harness its potential. Everyone should carve out time to tweet.

Every second, on average, around 6,000 tweets are tweeted on Twitter, which corresponds to over 350,000 tweets sent per minute, 500 million tweets per day and around 200 billion tweets per year. Surely, a few of these tweets resonate with you and can help you to succeed in business?

In order to tweet with a target, set goals for your time tweeting and have a purpose for spending the 20 minutes to one-hour a day on the social networking site. At a cocktail party, you wouldn’t watch from afar as people communicated, so don’t waste your precious time on Twitter pushing out content without purpose or watching from the sidelines.

Here are some questions to ask yourself before getting started.

Do you have a story or recent news to share? Then you’ll want to focus your efforts on getting to know the media on Twitter and connecting with them. Read our blog for more on this topic.

Maybe you’re looking to connect with like-minded experts in your industry and learn how to position your business or organization? Twitter is a great resource for research.

Or maybe you want to grow revenue via Twitter. Yes, it can be done. You need to be strategic when tweeting like any marketing campaign. Attract others with professional content in the form of blogs, infographics, pictures, special offers and contests. People relate to a good story, creativity and an approach that resonate on personal and emotional levels, not hard sales tactics. Same goes for your approach in person or on social media.

No matter how you use the tool, connect with people who add value to your life and help you to further your professional or personal goals.

Here are four reasons you should be tweeting.

1. TO KEEP UP WITH LATEST INDUSTRY TRENDS

Twitter is a great place to stay on top of relevant news and trends in your industry. Follow thought leaders, trade publications, groups, reporters, editors and news sites for updates that can help you gain a sense of your relevance in the world. You won’t know what you have to offer others until you know their wants and needs.

2. TO INCREASE SEARCH RANKINGS

Social media marketing and SEO are two tightly integrated strategies for increasing your search rankings. Both are organic, inbound strategies that focus on building an appealing identity that naturally attract visitors. Since social media relies on high-quality content and a visible, strong brand presence, the efforts you spend on SEO can improve your social media reach.

The total number of followers and connections your social media profiles contain does have a significant influence on your rankings. A company with 100 Twitter followers won’t receive nearly the ranking bonus of a mega-corporation with a million Facebook likes and a million Twitter followers.

Don’t despair if you have a low number of followers on Twitter though because by participating in the conversation on the site and using it as a networking and sales tool are more important. Concentrate less on numbers and communicate more with your Twitter followers.

3. TO ENGAGE THE MEDIA

According to ING’s 2014 Social Media Impact survey, 57% of journalists consider social media to be ideal for contacting PR professionals and vice versa. Use Twitter to build relationships with journalists and bloggers to gain a better understanding of what they write about, when they need resources, and how they prefer to work with you.

According to a 2014 report from the Indiana University School of Journalism, 40% of journalists said social media networks are very important to their work. Twitter was the most popular type of social media used by journalists, and over half of those surveyed said they regularly use the platform for gathering information and reporting stories.

 4. SELF-PROMOTION

Although you shouldn’t excessively tweet about yourself, Twitter is a great tool to promote your blog content, news, videos and events every so often. When you tweet about yourself or your business, do it in a way that entertains and educates. If it’s your latest blog post, avoid saying things like “Check out my latest blog post about……” or “My business is hosting this great event next week – you should check it out.” Let them know what you’re tweeting about and how it will benefit them, then link to your post or event.

Overall, your tweets should include a healthy mix of self-promotion, conversation, information sharing, etc. Make all your Twitter updates interesting and useful. Share links to articles and blog posts you enjoy. Retweet interesting updates. Join conversations and answer questions. Twitter success is rooted in conversations and reciprocal relationships.

If you need help managing your Twitter account, advice on what you should be tweeting or tips for building relationships on social networks, feel free to comment on this post. Connect with inBLOOM on Twitter @inBLOOMbuzz.

Resources:

6 Social Media Practices That Boost SEO, Forbes

Twitter Usage Statistics, Internet Live Stats

photo by Viktor Hanacek 

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4 Ways to Give Your Local News National Mileage

4 Ways to Give Your Local News National Mileage

Can a local story attract the attention of national media? It sure can! Local news has the power to resonate with a larger audience if it offers a greater level of relevance and importance to the media. The tricky thing is it’s hard to tell what’s on an editor, producer or reporter’s mind, unless you’re a full-time publicist.

There are, however, several reasons why the media prefers one story over another, and you can give your story more mileage by doing a few simple things. Let’s review four ways your local story can resonate nationally by attracting the media’s attention from the start:

1. ARRIVE ON TIME

Your story may arrive just in the nick of time for a source working on a related topic. Often, it’s better to send a story you know the media is looking for, rather than just pitching it to the wind and hoping it sticks. You can plan by reviewing editorial calendars, which are yearly coverage schedules used to organize advertising campaigns and editorial pitching efforts. Many magazine editors and bloggers publish annual calendars of the upcoming articles and topics they’ll be covering. Deadlines are typically 90 days prior to publication. You can contact each outlet for this information.

We also recommend signing up for HARO alerts. Help A Reporter Out connects news sources with journalists by sending daily alerts with the content reporters seek. If you spot someone with an interest in your story, respond fast because HARO has grown to gigantic subscriber proportions and many people have their eyeballs on the inquiries.

2. UPLIFT AND INSPIRE

Everybody loves a story that hits them on a personal or emotional level. You’ll find all kinds of inspirational stories featured in the media every day, whether it’s online, on television, in the newspaper or on the radio.

LifeBuzz, one of our favorite sites, is dedicated to inspiring, uplifting and fascinating content. Other news sites like Mashable and the Huffington Post also frequently cover social good and inspirational stories. Their stories all do the following:

  • showcase strength
  • trigger emotions
  • motivate action
  • resonate
  • leave an impact
  • empower to take action

Review your story, and if you have the goods listed above, you may just grab the attention of a widely read and circulated media outlet and be on your way to becoming tomorrow’s national news.

3. OFFER CREDIBLE SOURCES

The media are hungry for credible and authentic content from seasoned professionals. If you know your stuff and are well known for it, people are going to want to hear from you. Maybe you’re a professional dog trainer looking to share your expertise on positive reinforcement training and tools. Gather a list of national pet-related media and pitch away! Be sure to include your bio, links to pics and video, and the expertise you bring to the table.

If you have a story involving well-known people or organizations, there’s a good chance national media are going to take an interest as well. Make sure to include this exciting information in the subject line of your email in order to grab the source’s attention.

4. BE ON TREND AND EXCITE

Trends come and go, but when something is a hot topic, the media is eager for sources and content. Emerging trends are new, fresh ideas or products that are becoming increasingly popular. People like hearing about the latest and the greatest so naturally, emerging trends attract the media. Some of the emerging trends we’ve recently seen floating around the news are smart machines, wearable technology, millennial behavior, the wavy bob (adorable new hairstyle), and STEAM in schools.

With a little research online, you too can find out what’s being talked about and maybe you’re on target to be the next trend to sweep across the country.

Getting your local story covered by national media isn’t always easy, and sometimes it seems impossible if you don’t have the resources or time.  But, if you follow the above guidelines, you’ll have a better chance of getting the most media miles out of your local news.

If you have a story and are unsure if it has the goods to be picked up by national media, feel free to comment on this post. I’ll be checking in to answer your questions and look forward to hearing from you.

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TEDx Inspires 3 Lessons in Self-Promotion 

TEDx Inspires 3 Lessons in Self-Promotion

Looking to jump-start your career? Attend or organize a TEDx event in your community.

Started 26 years ago as a conference in California, TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. It has grown to support world-changing ideas with many initiatives. At a TED conference, the world’s leading thinkers and doers are asked to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes or less. Three major TED events are held each year: in Los Angeles, California; in Vancouver and Whistler, Canada; and in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Today, TED’s TEDx initiative grants free licenses to people around the world to organize TED-style events in their communities. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual events are self-organized. At these events, live speakers combined with TEDTalks video spark deep discussion and connection.

Since 2013, community members from across Monmouth County, N.J. have come together to organize the TEDxNavesink conference. Each year, a different theme is chosen to build the day of non-fiction theater. In 2015, speakers and attendees will explore how accelerators are shaping our emerging and upcoming future. TEDxNavesink: Accelerators will be held on Saturday, April 11, 2015, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, N.J.

For the past three years, inBLOOM has assisted TEDxNavesink with its public relations and co-marketing efforts. We love everything involved with promoting a TEDx event – the passionate conversations on and offline, meeting new and exciting entrepreneurs, sharing talk topics with media, and co-marketing with local organizations and thought leaders. Most importantly, it’s an energized event that motivates entrepreneurs and innovators of all ages to jump start their careers.

Here are inBLOOM’s three TEDx inspired lessons in self-promotion to inspire you to attend the conference of ideas worth spreading:

1. LEVERAGE A BUILT-IN SOCIAL NETWORK

TEDx presents a wonderful opportunity to leverage the social networks of others in order to bring awareness to your personal brand. Take a look through the speakers list and do some digging to see which people are social influencers and part of large networks. Get on Twitter and follow the speakers. Tweet before and during the event, mention speakers and use hashtags to initiate conversation with a broader audience.

Read our tips for tweeting.

2. GIVE THE TALK OF YOUR LIFE

Something you must know before getting involved with a TEDx event is that it’s not a typical conference. It’s a known fact that every speaker giving a TED Talk gives the talk of their life, which is why the audience always has high expectations. Not everyone can captivate an audience; it’s a skill that takes time to develop. However, there are ways to instantly improve your speaking and presentation skills, which you will learn by watching the TEDx Talks.

TED and TEDx speakers make a good impression through body language –something extremely important during any presentation. The way you stand, move on the stage and interact with the audience are all factors that determine whether or not you will give a successful talk.  Even your level of mental alertness and preparedness are key to keeping the audience’s interest.

Not only are TED speakers in tune with their body language, they also wear their heart on their sleeve. There’s no need to worry about listening to an emotionless monotone voice – the speakers let their emotions show. By doing this, they create a meaningful and lasting connection with the audience.

3. MAINTAIN AND STRENGTHEN RELATIONSHIPS 

One of the most rewarding things you get out of participating in a TEDx event are the connections you make with everyone involved: organizers, volunteers, speakers, and sponsors. Make time to establish relationships by conversing and connecting both on and offline.

Many of the people involved in TEDx events consistently blog, host podcasts, and communicate on social media. Stay in touch on social channels and comment and share their content regularly. This is an excellent way to stay top-of-mind and can open doors for potential work and collaborations. Most importantly, meet up every few months for coffee and conversation. These in-person meetings hold much value in a hurried, digital world.

 TEDx Inspires 3 Lessons in Self-Promotion

Make sure to reserve your spot at 2015 TEDxNavesink: Accelerators. Learn more about TEDxNavesink and purchase tickets here.

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8 Reasons To Work On Your Relationship with SEO

8 Reasons To Work On Your Relationship with SEO

Like an old boyfriend’s name, the term SEO pops up in conversation here and there. But unlike the old boyfriend, deep down you know you need to work on your relationship with SEO in order to improve your online ranking and reputation.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a way of indexing content on Internet search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo! SEO continues to play the starring role in any website development and content marketing plan.

When I meet with business owners, they often ask, “How can I improve my website ranking?” or “How can my business show up when people search the Web?” The answers to these questions have changed over the years as SEO experts have responded to the ways search engines value content and rank website authority.

Today, marketers and writers can access much of the same data used by SEO experts to create content that is loved by search engines and the people using them. Businesses can take control of their SEO with organic and paid marketing campaigns that include content marketing (blogs, podcasting, videos), Google analytics, and social media.

For years, web development companies have promised their clients better Google ranking with SEO tricks and schemes, but now the search engines have made it clear quality counts, not technology workarounds. Instead, marketers, writers, and publicists are drawing visitors to sites with consistent, optimized content, daily social media engagement, and inbound links from cross-marketing relationships, social influencers, and media coverage.

But please don’t disregard many of the helpful tools and resources available online, many for free, from SEO experts and software companies. We aren’t against a little help from the tech gurus. Together, the SEO community, marketers and publicists are helping their clients to share the most valuable and relevant content to attract site visitors and better rank results.

Here are a few of inBLOOM’s favorite SEO resources and tools:

Yoast WordPress SEO plugin

Yoast WordPress SEO plugin is the most complete SEO plugin available for WordPress. It offers everything you need to optimize your site. You can easily optimize your site’s titles and descriptions for Google and learn how to write better content with the built-in content analysis function.

Google Analytics

The SEO reports in Analytics provide Google Web Search performance data about the website that you have set up using Webmaster Tools. You can use this data to identify opportunities and prioritize efforts to increase the amount of traffic to your site. The Search Engine Optimization reports in Analytics use four metrics specific to Google Web Search data: impressions, clicks, average position and CTR (clickthrough rate).

KeywordSpy

Through this keyword tool and keyword software, you can perform advanced keyword research and keyword tracking to study what your competitors have been advertising in their adwords campaigns and other PPC campaigns. You can now get complete in-depth analysis, stats, budget, affiliates and ad copies of your competitors.

If you’re still finding it hard to fall in love with SEO, here are eight reasons why you need to work on the relationship:

  1. Businesses that focus on SEO without having a strong content plan in place will fail and will need to shift their focus to the creation and distribution of high-quality content in order to achieve significant search engine visibility.
  2. Search rankings will increasingly become more about building relationships and less about technical strategies. Businesses realize that focusing on merely creating content and optimizing its technical components for SEO just aren’t enough to achieve their goals. Businesses that humanize their brand are the ones who are standing out.
  3. High search rankings linked to blogger outreach campaigns, building relationships with brand advocates, reaching out to influencers and engaging on social media.
  4. Negative SEO will be a bigger threat than ever. Negative SEO is when dubious people build thousands of spammy links pointed at a competitors’ website with the intent of causing their search rankings to plummet.
  5. Inbound links are the most influential signal of trust and authority. This isn’t going to change — not in 2015 or anytime soon. The days of building links on irrelevant blogs and chasing large quantities of links to game the search results are over. Earning a single link on a high-quality relevant website is valuable for multiple reasons including SEO, attracting referral traffic, leads, sales and branding exposure. Look for traditional PR and SEO to work closer together in 2015.
  6. Studies suggest that the top organic and paid spots in the Google search results get about twice as many clicks as the second spots.
  7. Google Analytics is used by somewhere between 10 million and 25 million websites worldwide, and various surveys suggest over 50 percent of business websites (both large and small) use Google Analytics.
  8. Social media practices that boost SEO include growing your number of followers, encouraging external inbound links, optimizing your posts for searches, influencing social sharing, locally-optimized posts, and increasing brand awareness.

If you would like assistance running marketing and pr campaigns, contact us.

Resources:

The Top 7 SEO Trends That Will Dominate 2015 by Jayson DeMers, Forbe

20 Google Facts & Stats that Every Marketer Should Know by Andrew Garberson, LunaMetrics

6 Changes Your 2015 SEO Strategy Must Focus On by Jonathan Long, Entrepreneur

photo by Viktor Hanacek 

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