Yesterday, a live Twitter session that the National Football League hosted directly with their commissioner, Roger Goodell, certainly created a lot of interest. With the NFL draft only days away, the notion of stirring up some buzz likely motivated the NFL to “expose” Goodell to the millions of fans waiting with questions.

As one would expect, Goodell was barraged with an array of legitimate questions but also a large amount of complete nonsense. #AskCommish provided some extensive humor at the expense of Goodell, and likely set the path for other public figures to avoid such an open conversation with the masses.

 

(An example of the quick wit of Goodell)

I think these sort of “good” ideas are going to start to fade out as someone with the stature of Goodell may not want to be subject to the public bashing that can come with an open forum. To his credit, Goodell came off as quick witted and funny in many of his responses. I am sure he thought he was going to answer real hardcore football questions, but he was a good sport and did a nice job dealing with some of the nonsense that was thrown his way. The NFL, while a big business, is still entertainment.  And this format was entertaining for the fans, but I’m not so sure it was the type of entertainment Goodell was looking for. As we saw a few weeks back in the response to the NYPD’s desire to upgrade their social media engagement, sometimes the best ideas can go terribly wrong.

My favorite Tweet from yesterday is below:

Is Snapchat a true marketing opportunity?While social media has dominated discussions related to marketing, the question that often arises is how to effectively leverage social media for a strong return on investment. The ability to see value has been harnessed and realized through Facebook, Twitter, and to some degree LinkedIn and Instagram, but the platform that has Internet marketing experts currently buzzing is Snapchat.

Sure, it’s gained a large amount of popularity amongst the high school to college age demographic and it’s famous for turning down a huge payoff to continue to push forward as “the next big thing,” but how can it really be used as a tool for marketing?

Since it is still gaining steam, it’s only really prevalent amongst the younger generation. Savvy marketers like McDonald’s and Taco Bell have begun to promote Snapchat videos which they migrate from their other social media channels. This sort of marketing is effective because it furthers their brand, and marketing powerhouses like McDonald’s can afford to have LeBron James in their ads…which your average business has no chance of accomplishing. These ads are low-cost to promote and the only real cost is likely to pay LeBron whatever sort of unreal payday he receives for being in the ads. But this still leads to the same question, can your everyday business benefit from Snapchat marketing?

It’s not a simple answer, but I would say that Snapchat can be an effective marketing tool for businesses that are targeting a younger clientele. These businesses can promote specific products, offer discounts, and utilize the Snapchat “Stories” feature to entice their audience to engage their brand.

For marketers that cater to an “older” demographic, Snapchat isn’t going to provide them with the sort of value they need to make their marketing efforts worthwhile. Over time, this may change as there was once a time when Facebook was viewed only as a platform “younger people” used…and we all saw how quickly that opinion changed.

The Great GatsbyFilm director Baz Lurhmann is nobody’s fool. When he took the classic text “The Great Gatsby” and adopted it to the screen, he knew that there was no great film version of this beloved book. It had been attempted in the past but never done very well, so when Lurhmann took “The Great Gatsby” and brought 1922 into 2013, he used every avenue available to him – including social media marketing. Here are some ways that 2013’s “The Great Gatsby” film used social media marketing to drive home the experience.

Facebook

Cover Photo
The cover photo on “The Great Gatsby” Facebook page sets the tone for the film. The classy, wide shot shows all the principal players and really drives home the style that Lurhmann was going for.

The Great Gatsby - Facebook Cover Photo
Custom Tabs
“The Great Gatsby” has custom tabs to help drive fans to the movie theaters. This is nothing all that original, but the fact that fans of the film could simply click to “like” or “buy tickets now” made the transition from computer screen to movie screen seamless.

The Great Gatsby - Facebook Tabs
Shareable Content
The volume and quality of material available on “The Great Gatsby” Facebook page makes for great shareable content. There are photos, quotes, videos, behind the scenes information on the making of the movie, and so much more, which allows  fans to really see what this film is all about. Content like this went viral on the movie’s Facebook page, which created even more buzz for the film.

Video
There was no shortage of video clips posted online to promote “The Great Gatsby”. Filmmakers need to realize that as soon as they put their films out into the world, they will be available for viewing online, so the key is to provide impactful clips to catch the interest of the online audience before others do. The producers of this movie certainly understood that, and the fact that they offered so much in terms of video clips on all platforms kept fans engaged and wanting to see more on the movie screen.


Twitter

The Great Gatsby - TwitterIn the Twitter universe, “The Great Gatsby’s” social media presence also scored big. The use of hashtags for fans to connect and share pictures (#GatsbyPics) made the social media marketing experience interactive, inclusive, and effortless. The marketing team continues to engage with those who mention the film on Twitter, which increases the fans’ enthusiasm for the film. Here is an example of fans on Twitter showing off their Gatsby-inspired outfits before attending the film and sharing it using the hashtag #GatsbyPics. This was later retweeted by “The Great Gatsby” Twitter account.

 


Tumblr

The Great Gatsby - TumblrAnother really smart social media move was the Tumblr Fan Art Challenge.  Fans were asked to create an original piece of art from the “The Great Gatsby” film for a chance to win a trip to New York City for the film’s premier. This increased fan engagement, and, like so many of the other social media platforms, led to the fans doing the promoting for the film!  Something else to keep in mind is that “The Great Gatsby” took advantage of its other social platforms to promote the Tumblr contest. Below are some of the entries from the Tumblr Art Challenge displayed on Pinterest.

Instagram

People love seeing celebrities in their natural habitat, and “The Great Gatsby” definitely didn’t have a shortage of celebrities for fans to get excited about. There was major online interest in the flurry of Instagram photos showing actors and actresses from the film strutting their stuff on the red carpet.

Every Aspect of the Film’s Social Media Promotion was Great

From Facebook to Twitter to Tumblr to Instagram, “The Great Gatsby” took its social media marketing presence to the next level. By engaging the audience, allowing exclusive peeks behind the curtain, and giving like-minded movie goers a way to connect via social media, this film has certainly cast a new mold for future films to follow. Viewers of big blockbusters can expect plenty of chances to connect on social media going forward.

What did you think of “The Great Gatsby’s” social media marketing presence?

SEO 101 - WebiMax.com

In the early days of the Internet, text was the predominant medium through which information was shared with the masses.  In a time before broadband connections, HD videos and even Facebook, the Web was more about functionality than style.  While these technical limitations made for a lackluster user experience, they did create a solid blueprint for today’s Internet.

When the Web was ruled by text and rudimentary HTML code, pages had to be coded very efficiently in order to load quickly and images and videos were simply out of the question.  Although text still plays a crucial role in the modern Internet, technological advancements have placed multimedia and rich content front-and-center.

NCS Mosaic vs. Google Chrome - WebiMax.com
A Tale of Two Browsers: From Mosaic to Chrome – The Evolution of Digital Content

A Changing of the Guard
As YouTube, Pinterest and other popular sites geared toward images and videos continue to grow, the focus has begun to shift away from text as the primary form of content on the Internet.  Today, virtually every website utilizes extensive imagery or video content to engage audiences.  Social networks are certainly no exception.

In fact, social media posts or tweets containing images or videos are more likely to be shared or “liked” than those exclusively comprised of text.  The bottom line is – rich content is the key to a more effective Social Media marketing strategy.

How to Engage Your Audience with Photos & Videos
Though I specifically cited YouTube and Pinterest as “media-focused” networks, other social profiles can equally benefit from rich content.  Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn have all recently added enhanced video and photo integration capabilities for user and business profiles.  This functionality allows users to more easily display rich and engaging content.

However, it is always important to consider your audience.  When creating new rich content, first ask yourself if your consumers would find it helpful or intriguing.  Originality, creativity and even humor are all elements of successful content.  Keep it relevant, fun and informative.  Developing infographics, instructional videos, customer testimonials and new or upcoming product photos are all engaging ways to reach your social following.

Every successful Social Media Optimization and Marketing campaign begins with delivering quality content to your followers.  By offering up unique, captivating videos and images as part of your content strategy, you’re well on your way to Social Media success!


Want to learn how to get even more from your Social Media marketing campaign?  Ask our Experts or share your thoughts in the comments below!

I hope you brought a few extra cookies to the lunch table, because with the way SEO is evolving, you’re going to need to make some new friends – and those friends are Twitter and Pinterest.

WebiMax - Facebook
I’ve been SEO writing for several years, and the increasing overlap of the two circles in the Venn diagram of “content” and “social media” is the biggest change to which I’ve had to adapt. Now, there’s scarcely a time when I’m in the process of writing or posting a blog post, article, infographic, or what-have-you and I don’t visit one of these social media platforms. This is not to say that there isn’t a place in the SEO world for Facebook, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn, Yelp!, and the rest of the gang, because those provide a whole new slew of optimization opportunities. I’ve simply found that these two are a) largely accessible to content writers of any level of experience and/or expertise, and b) the ones that make it super easy to pigeonhole your audience.

Let’s delve further into how the writing and social media departments of SEO overlap, shall we?

Twitter
When deciding on a blog topic, we know how important it is to choose a title that’s attention-grabbing. One way to go about that is to make sure it’s current and relevant. We’re a culture of short attention spans – we’re so connected that there are constantly a million different things competing for readers’ attention, and that’s why you need to be strategic if you’re one of those competitors. For this reason, you want to make friends with Twitter and, more importantly, its ‘Trending’ and ‘Discover’ tabs. Twitter is your inside source, letting you know what people are talking about right now – it lets you know what already has people’s attention, so all you have to do is stay on-topic so social media users can’t resist a click.

Keep in mind that hashtags are the best thing to happen to social sharing since sliced bread. Once you’ve posted your blog post or infographic, tweet it and slap one of those trending hashtags on it. Just like that, you’re automatically visible to the millions of people browsing that hashtag.

Pinterest
People go to Pinterest for ideas. You’ve got ideas, don’t you? Otherwise, you wouldn’t be writing that article or blog post. The best way to make use of Pinterest is to be creative: write a lively how-to blog post, or create an infographic with wild and interesting facts. (Another helpful tip from me to you: try not to get sucked in in the process.)


Once you create a pin of your post and post it to the relevant category, the nature of Pinterest does the rest of the work for you. You never know when something might go viral – I once pinned a blog post on bridal showers, and it got over 800 re-pins.

On the flip-side, if you don’t have ideas, you can be one of those people who uses Pinterest for just that reason. Go to the relevant category and see what’s getting the most pins – what are people interested in right now? On my feed right now, I can tell you that an article on how to make an all-natural slug repellent (yum) has tons of re-pins. It makes sense, it’s springtime and this is a current issue. Play off the seasonal idea since that seems to be working.

As I said before, one could easily make the argument for other social platforms and their usefulness, but based on my experience, these have the fewest limitations for both resources and sharing. They require the lowest level of craftiness (and don’t ask for any money, which is always a plus) for making what you share visible to a large audience, and it’s easiest to search for what’s popular on any given topic.

How does your content socialize? Comment and let me know, or drop me a line at sklemowitz@webimax.com.

5WaysTwitterIMG NEW

From celebrities to grandmas, everyone is using Twitter to share content and links. As one of the most popular social networking sites in the world, Twitter boasts a huge following. By increasing social influence on Twitter, businesses and individuals can reach a huge amount of people with little effort. Here are five ways anyone can gain Twitter followers fast!

1.         Search for Keywords

Let’s say you have a business that sells picture frames online. By searching for keywords that other Twitter users post, for example the keyword “photo frames,” you can find Twitter users that might follow your account if you post about related content. Instead of simply typing “photo frames” into the search in Twitter, search for entire phrases that include your keywords or search for similar words like “picture frames” in order to have a more specific search result. Include words like “want” and “need’ photo frames to view who is interested in wanting your product in real time. After finding your targeted audience, reach out to them on Twitter and begin interacting with them by first following their account. Favorite their tweet and let them know what you offer, without overly self-promoting. Take it a step further and reply to them in a comedic way – they will appreciate it :)

Want Photo Frames

Here’s a perfect example of this idea in action:

James Candy Twitter Profile

2.         Analyze using Followerwonk’s Bio Cloud

By using Twitter analytics, you can find out more about followers and recognize trending data to gain more followers. The analytics app Followerwonk includes a bio cloud search tool that analyzes the bios of your current followers and displays the keywords most used. This feature will help you not only find other users to follow, but will map out and graph the demographics–age, gender, location and data related to your audience–so you can tailor your posts and interactions based on their Twitter activity.

 

PhotoFrames Bio Word

 

3.         Compare users with Followerwonk

By searching for information about your competition, you can strategize about how to grow your audience based on what other people in your industry are doing right. Using Followerwonk’s compare users feature, you can type in three Twitter handles of people or companies that are similar to you, whether they’re in your industry or sell the same type of products as you. The “compare users” search feature will show you which users follow two or three of the accounts. You should follow these users since they are obviously interested in the same product or niche that you are connected to.

Compare Users

4.         Suck Up to People & Ask Questions!

Tracking users, following them, and engaging in a conversation with them usually results in them following you back. You can praise people by tagging them with their Twitter handle, favoriting their Tweets, and asking questions based on their expertise. This starts a conversation in which the user thinks positively about you right away and will consider following you. To sum it up, people like to be recognized. Hopefully, after they follow you, they will retweet or reply to your post, which will have your handle appear on their Twitter feed, and will result in their followers follow you.

Here are examples of conversations I started with Twitter uses about picture frames:

Nick Twitter Blog 1

Nick Twitter Blog 2

5.         Use Twitter’s Advanced Search

Some users forget it even exists, but Twitter’s advanced search can be a valuable tool in finding more users to follow and be followed by as well as narrowing down exactly what you want to search for. This feature allows users to find Twitter handles, exact phrases, posts containing either or both search keywords, tweets sent to and from handles, keywords related to or near locations, tweets sent by a certain date, posts with links, and more.

Through user interaction and analysis, you will gain more followers and help increase your social media influence on Twitter. What tactics do you use in order to gain Twitter followers?