Welcome Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

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Barbara Gabogrecan
President

Welcome Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:48 am

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OUR FIRST EXPERT FOR 2013!
I am so pleased to be able to introduce Irma Zimmermann to you, as she shares valuable information to help you in your business. Her topic ‘SIZZLING SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS FOR BUSINESS’ is sure to capture the attention of many business owners. I am constantly asked “How can social media help my business?” It often seems as though the time and effort one has to put into social media does not show the rewards that businesses want. IRMA WILL COMMENCE HER POSTS ON 11TH FEBRUARY

Irma works on the principle of the ‘Left brain, Right brain’ and even though she also specialises in graphic design, she believes that design alone is not enough. She knows that effective communication also requires the creative use of technology.

Via her company, ‘Tell IT Media’ she embraces new technology; balancing functionality with creativity and technical 'bells & whistles', to convey her client’s unique messages to make their businesses stand out from their competitors.

Join in this week and gain some really COOL information and ask questions in this, our last Forum topic for the year. 8-)

Warm wishes
Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
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Re: Welcom Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby IrmaZimmermann » Mon Feb 11, 2013 8:06 am

Good morning and thank you Barbara for inviting me to talk about the Sizzling Subject of Social Media.


EVEN THE BEST ADVENTURES NEED MAPS … WHY PLANNING WILL IMPROVE YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA JOURNEY

When visiting a foreign city, you stand a far better chance of surviving for a day or two if you take a map. We all know that. Whether travelling on foot or by rail, bus or road, you probably wouldn’t dream of setting off without knowing where you were going.

And so it is with Social Media. At the start of your journey into using it for your business, you’re faced with a range of different platforms, and you have next-to-no experience in using any of them. It can be quite overwhelming – how are you going to learn to use them, never mind find the time to keep your sites up and running?

For most business owners, time is the greatest investment. Indeed, it’s often the only investment you can make. And yet this is why Social Media, with its freedom of access, offers you such amazing opportunities.

“All one needs is a computer, a network connection, and a bright spark of initiative and creativity to join the economy.” - Don Tapscott

The benefits are there for the taking, if only you can use your limited time to its greatest potential. This means ensuring your Social Media activity has a strategic focus and conforms to a plan.


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KNOW YOUR DESTINATION
What can make this journey easier is putting together some kind of route plan. First, you need to identify where you’re going, so ask yourself these questions.

What do you want to achieve by using Social Media? Your goals should reflect your type of business. If you deliver a local service, your Social Media presence needs to achieve different outcomes to that of a company that sells online. For example, a local retailer would require a very different strategy to that of an online business selling their products or services internationally.

Next, What are your marketing goals in using Social Media? You might want to:
• achieve direct sales, quickly,
• achieve great PR by establishing a social connection with your clients,
• create a positive enough impression to attract new clients,
• build general awareness or promote your brand,
• increase the overall number of customers your business has, or
• identify and attract into new business opportunities.

Be aware that the more personal nature of Social Media interaction means that blatant selling often doesn’t go down well. More subtle approaches are needed, along with – dare we say it – a sense of integrity.

The safest goals to work towards when you’re starting out are those relating to PR and brand promotion. Letting customers know who you are, what you’re like and what you stand for will help to build increased sales over time, even if not immediately.

“The goal of Social Media is to turn customers into your personal evangelist.” - Jane Barker


THINK ABOUT PLATFORMS
As you can see, your Social Media plan needs to both reflect and fit into your ‘marketing mix’. It’s easier if you think of the Social Media platforms as additional communication channels, which you can use in different ways.

In these posts, we’ll be looking at the ‘awesome foursome’: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest. You’ll see how they have different strengths and learn how these will help you to achieve different outcomes. They need to be approached in different ways, but as with our analogy at the start of this post, each can take you to your destination.

The beauty of starting on Social Media is that you can take a look around first, seeing how it all works and watching how other people do things. When you’ve finished planning, you can set up an account and start at a steady pace, learning the ropes by using them, and playing it safe until you feel ready to really get out there.


INTEGRATING SOCIAL MEDIA
What’s important to remember is that all the elements of your marketing plan should be integrated, so that the ‘whole is greater than the sum of its parts’. Social Media should slot right in there. Your website should always remain the hub of your business – it’s a central reference point for your customers and, unlike Social Media sites, isn’t subject to sudden changes that you can’t control.

Despite this integration, Social Media does require that you communicate with your customers in a different way. By entering into direct conversation, you are starting to change their expectations of you – and your relationship may never be the same again.

Are you ready to embark on this exciting Journey?


“How can you squander even one more day not taking advantage of the greatest shifts of our generation? How dare you settle for less when the world has made it so easy for you to be remarkable?” -Seth Godin
Irma Zimmermann
E-mail: info@tell-itmedia.com.au
Web: www.tell-itmedia.com.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/tell.itmedia


GRAPHIC DESIGN | WEB DESIGN l SOCIAL MEDIA
IrmaZimmermann
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:22 am

Re: Welcom Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby Barbara Gabogrecan » Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:15 am

WOW - what a fantastic start Irma. You have been so generous with your time and content. I usually advise experts not to make their content too long as members are so time poor that they tend to move on before they have completed reading the post. But this was not the case with what you have written. Even though I struggle with reading since my stroke, I got Peter to read it in full to me...it was awesome!

I love the idea of a map as opposed to a plan. The illustration says it all. Your quotes are great too. I am sure that some business owners do not think of social media as a marketing tool, so I thought it was really great that you brought that to a head right from the beginning. Likewise when you warn users not to try to sell through social media. If our readers simply take notice of all you have to say over the next week, I am sure they will have a better understanding of the purpose of social media and know how to get the best out of it.

I look forward to reading all your posts.
Cheers
Barb
Barbara Gabogrecan assists HBB's to market their business online
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org

Barbara is an artist specialising in silk painting; her video is on page one of You Tube http://youtu.be/1ZA9HObN_Go
http://www.SilkPaintingByGabogrecan.com/

Having survived a stroke and a brain tumour, Barbara wrote a book titled 'Thank God I Had a Stroke' to motivate and inspire others suffering from similar afflictions.
http://GabogrecanStrokeRecovery.com/
Barbara Gabogrecan
 
Posts: 341
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 12:57 pm

Re: Welcom Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby IrmaZimmermann » Mon Feb 11, 2013 1:21 pm

Hi Barbara, thanks for taking the time to read through my post. Yes, I do get a little carried away on the subject of Social Media and wanted to set the tone and direction on this initial post for the exciting journey that we're about to take. :D

I believe a bit of planning (mapping out and defining what you want out of Social Media) combined with a bit of exploring and experimentation (finding out what works and what doesn't) is certainly the way to go.

Here are a few things a business owner should think about:
- The main goals for using Social Media (i.e. building brand awareness/generating leads/marketing sales etc)
- Their Target Market (find out what Social Media Platforms are most popular with your customers or prospects)
- How much time one has to invest in Social Media (and who is going to manage your Social Media posts)
- Their Social Media style (i.e. Informative/Entertaining/ Innovative/Educational)
- What will they post? (how are you going to keep audience engaged)

I truly believe in being ‘Social’ and taking the time to learn and find out a bit more about your connections along the way is vital – after all it is called ‘Social’ Media. Consistency is important and don’t expect overnight success. I like the analogy that “Social Media is like gardening – it takes time to nurture and grow”!

Cheers, irma
Irma Zimmermann
E-mail: info@tell-itmedia.com.au
Web: www.tell-itmedia.com.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/tell.itmedia


GRAPHIC DESIGN | WEB DESIGN l SOCIAL MEDIA
IrmaZimmermann
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:22 am

Re: Welcom Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby IrmaZimmermann » Tue Feb 12, 2013 9:06 am

In our 2nd article we would like to share:


HOW TO WIN LIKES AND INFLUENCE PEOPLE WITH A FANTASTIC FACEBOOK PAGE

When it comes to Social Media platforms, Facebook seems to have it all. Comments and movies and pictures, fans and likes and sharing – and it seems that nearly everyone with a computer has signed up for a personal account. Facebook is indeed wonderful – if you use it carefully. This means following your own Social Media strategy and sticking to a plan.
Used in the right way, the platform can really get your brand out there.

First things first, though. The most important thing is to set up your page in the right way. When you start, you’ll see there are different page types available. Decide which suits your business best. Follow the rules concerning your timeline and profile pictures. This is a great opportunity to establish your brand’s visual representation, along with its description.
All this becomes easier if you have a marketing plan, which defines how you consistently project your brand in every area of your marketing activity, both written and visual.

Of course, the immediacy of Facebook brings different demands. You need to be conversational, which means listening and responding, as well as talking. And it means being very careful about the things you say (blatant selling doesn't work). That’s why it’s important to have a real sense of who your customers are.


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“Engage rather than sell … Work as a co-creator, not a marketer.” -Tom H. C. Anderson, market researcher

Luckily, Facebook provides good statistical feedback. Called Insights, this tells you how successful your page is in engaging with fans. It’s important to learn how to monitor this, as it reveals a lot.

Next, you can start helping people to find your page. You can include a link or even part of the news feed on your website. When you achieve 30 followers, you can change the page’s URL to better match your business name. This makes it even easier to add to all your promotional material, from your leaflets and business cards, right down to your email signature.

Then it’s time to get posting! Be prepared to post every day, using a mixture of text, photos, video, shared material and posted URLs. Be imaginative, or you’ll run out of steam very quickly. Think about what is ‘on brand’ and, as you gain experience, stretch the limits a bit.

If you feel unsure about this, watch your competitor’s pages for a while before you get going. You can adapt their successful ideas. The best Facebook pages are usually those that start well and just keep growing stronger.

“Build it, and they will come” only works in the movies. Social Media is a “build it, nurture it, engage them, and they may come and stay.” Seth Godin
Irma Zimmermann
E-mail: info@tell-itmedia.com.au
Web: www.tell-itmedia.com.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/tell.itmedia


GRAPHIC DESIGN | WEB DESIGN l SOCIAL MEDIA
IrmaZimmermann
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:22 am

Re: Welcome Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby Peter O'Connor » Wed Feb 13, 2013 1:01 pm

Hi Irma

I must admit, I find Facebook totally confusing. I have looked at it more than a couple of times and have given up in disgust (at myself) each time.

Are you saying to post your information on Facebook, hoping that the right people will read it? Perhaps you could give me some simple steps to follow to resurrect my Facebook account to make it work for me.

Cheers

Peter
Peter O'Connor, is a retired accountant and is involved with teaching home based businesses how to build and manage their own websites.
http://www.HomeBasedBusinessAustralia.org
Peter O'Connor
 
Posts: 79
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Re: Welcome Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby IrmaZimmermann » Wed Feb 13, 2013 2:14 pm

Hi Peter,

Great too see you here Peter. A good place to start is with a profile page which has a group of people that you are already connected with. I think it's important to keep your personal and Facebook business pages quite separate. Inform those you're already connected with on your personal page that you have a business page and invite them over. Under 'Update Info' in your personal profile add your business and Business page URL under 'Work and Education'. This way if anyone happens to land on your personal page there's a link to your Business page for them to head over and choose to 'Like'.

BUILD A FAN BASE:
To build some more fans and a following make sure you share your Business page everywhere i.e. On all your business card, email signature, website, promotional material, banners and have the links wherever you can on all your other Social Media sites, Website and Blog. Make it real easy for people to find you!

ENGAGE WITH YOUR AUDIENCE:
Be creative and diversified with interesting posts in the form of Images, Video, Links to articles and Blogs etc. Make sure your post are relevant to your target audience and remember that Social Media is about being 'Social' so reply to comments and engage with those that arrive on your page.

IMPORTANCE OF CONSISTENCY
There is nothing worse than arriving on a page that has a post from a month back. Make a post at least once a day making you visible in peoples feed and to stay top of mind. Social Media is a little like gardening . . . it takes time to nurture and grow. So to see the benefits you need to keep it up :D

MY TOP TIPS: Be Helpful > Be present > Be Social > Be Yourself > Share the Love


Hope this helps Peter . . . let me now how you go. Feel free to share your Facebook Page with me!
Irma Zimmermann
E-mail: info@tell-itmedia.com.au
Web: www.tell-itmedia.com.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/tell.itmedia


GRAPHIC DESIGN | WEB DESIGN l SOCIAL MEDIA
IrmaZimmermann
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:22 am

Re: Welcome Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby IrmaZimmermann » Wed Feb 13, 2013 2:40 pm

Article 3 Talks about Twitter

STRAIGHT TO THE TOP! HOW TO CATCH BIG FISH WITH SMALL TALK ON TWITTER

At first glance, Twitter could be mistaken for a lightweight site. But don’t be fooled. This micro-blogging site, with its 140-character limit on posts, can be one of the most valuable business development tools at your hands.

Twitter’s magic rests in the very feature that can seem so off-putting – its transience. Yes, messages come and go with amazing speed, but this brings incredible directness. You can talk personally with your customers, night and day. You can quickly build new contacts and join discussions, simply by searching for hashtags (#) that relate to your business. And you can relay snippets of news to people who are interested in what you do.

Yet the outstanding feature emerges when you start networking, for Twitter gives you unparalleled access to thought leaders and industry players throughout the world. If you follow them, you can reply to their tweets and ask them questions. It’s a wonderful way to get yourself noticed and build new connections.

For this reason, a conversation on Twitter is anything but small. It’s conversation boiled down to the essentials, but conducted on a grand scale. There’s almost no limit to where you can go in the ‘Twitterverse’.


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“The qualities that make Twitter seem insane and half-baked are what makes it so powerful.” Jonathan Zittrain, Professor of Law at Harvard

However, you should proceed with care as you bring your business to this super-fast site. As with all the Social Media platforms, you will only get profound results if you put in the planning time and set it up properly.

You should first define what your goals are and how they fit into your marketing strategy and mix. Ask yourself: who do I want to speak with – and why? And what brand image do I wish to present?

You need to decide what to call yourself. The big brands use their name twice: business@business. But who wants to talk to a monolithic presence? If you wish to network and have real conversations with customers and prospects, it’s better to use your own name next to your business: yourname@business.

It follows that instead of a logo, you should also use a picture of yourself as a profile image – it’s another way of saying that you’re approachable. Your logo can form part of your profile page, which every follower will see at least once. Again, your images and text need to be part of your brand presentation. Your website URL should be there, along with other contact details.

Finally, as you start to Tweet, it’s important that you stay genuine. Your presence is a personal one, so don’t push your business – that would look crass and switch people off. Always avoid ‘marketing speak’, instead being informative and relevant, while posting interesting photos and links.

And most important of all: always, but always, think before you Tweet.

“Being yourself is the only way how to stand out in today’s crowded market. So what’s YOUR story?” - Magnetic Silvia
Last edited by IrmaZimmermann on Sat Feb 16, 2013 1:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Irma Zimmermann
E-mail: info@tell-itmedia.com.au
Web: www.tell-itmedia.com.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/tell.itmedia


GRAPHIC DESIGN | WEB DESIGN l SOCIAL MEDIA
IrmaZimmermann
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:22 am

Re: Welcome Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby Debra Jarvis » Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:23 pm

Hi Irma, Firstly I love the cartoons!!! You use them really well to illustrate your points.

I've been on Social Media for a while and confess I've just left it sit for the last few years. I accept friend requests and up until a couple of weeks ago rarely post. I've been given a few pointers on twitter, including the need to post and interact regularily and am making a point to be more engaged in these mediums (prinicipally facebook and twitter).

I got some interaction on G+ from a video I posted on youtube late last year and then G+ asked me to post it there (I don't really understand how that happened), however it stimulated discussion and encouraged me to put some effort (as opposed to none) into Social Media.

Your posts have come at an excellent time for me. I have been extremly unplanned in my SM strategy and this year am focusing on providing content on-line and driving traffic from SM. I have built relationships over the past 12 years (I've done a lot of speaking and article writing) and have been fortunate in that I've enjoyed Media exposure which is certainly helping.

Since I've been more active I've increased my likes of my book page to 57, might not sound like much but I'm stoked plus my reach went up to 219 and the demographic information is really interesting!!!

Twitter is an interesting medium, I want to make my tweets meaningful and it's challenged me to think about what I've done each day thats relevant to my audience. (side benfit is I realise how much progess I'm making towards my goal and that my focus is in the right place.)

Thanks for sharing your wisdom and encouaging me to continue my journey into the active and engaged world of SM. Debra :-)
Debra Jarvis
 
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 5:02 pm
Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Re: Welcome Irma Zimmermann - Social Media Tips for Business

Postby IrmaZimmermann » Wed Feb 13, 2013 9:33 pm

Hi Debra,

Thanks for your post Debra and glad you like the cartoons – this stems back from my earlier days in the advertising world before the digital era. I often use imagery or sketches - as images are my way to Tell-a-Story.

Great to hear you plan on a strategy to get your content online and are driving traffic in this way, especially if you already have content lined up such as articles, video etc. Social Media offers great communication channels to share your content and your message.

I had a look at your YouTube video and great to hear you got a good response from that on G+. Video is so powerful and after watching yours I already have an introduction to who you are and what you do. Unfortunately I won’t be touching on YouTube during this forum but believe that every business should explore the opportunities that exist with video.

Great to hear you Facebook likes have increased – I’ve just ‘liked’ your page and now it’s at 58 . . . keep it up and maybe look into getting a nifty Timeline cover design to round it off (don't forget to stick to the guidelines) :roll: I’m glad you see the value in Facebook insights. For instance I cans see that 58% of my fans are female and the larger proportion are between 35-54 not to mention what languages they speak and where they all reside around the world. Now that’s great marketing info for any business!

Twitter and all Social Media platform require the ‘learn by doing ‘ approach. Twitter has presented me with many surprises with the ability to tap into thought leaders and industry information. I also love the hashtag phenomenon and being able to follow ‘live events’ and the quick easy connections it allows –something which I found far more difficult to do on a Facebook business page.

I hope to see you online and connect further. At the very least Social Media made the world a smaller place by bringing us together.
Irma Zimmermann
E-mail: info@tell-itmedia.com.au
Web: www.tell-itmedia.com.au
Facebook: www.facebook.com/tell.itmedia


GRAPHIC DESIGN | WEB DESIGN l SOCIAL MEDIA
IrmaZimmermann
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 7:22 am

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