23 Aug

What is Lead Generation?

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media on 23.08.16 by John Meloche

A couple of blogs ago we mentioned lead generation. What is lead generation? Well it’s something all businesses are becoming familiar with. Leads are potential customers you believe will be interested in your business’ services/products. It’s the contact information of likely customers. Usually they’re people you believe would be a part of your target audience. So lead generation is merely the acquisition of the contact information of potential customers. It’s the process of converting strangers on the web into legitimate leads for your business.

There are many ways to get these contacts. Essentially it comes down to whether or not you want lead generation to be a part of your internal operations. Lead generation can be done internally, where you have employees searching the web for potential customers. Or you can do it externally as you can buy lists from other businesses. The lead generation industry is growing rapidly as businesses are trying desperately to connect to new customers digitally. This digital interdependence so to speak, is becoming a crucial theme in the 21st century.

Lead generation is becoming a crucial process in many business’ internal operations. Our world is becoming increasingly connected through digital marketing, whether that be through email marketing, content marketing, or social commerce. To conclude the digital divide is slowly disappearing and we’re observing a greater digital connection being formed in the business world.

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11 Aug

3 Ways To Use Snapchat for Your Business

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media on 11.08.16 by John Meloche

We’ve discussed how Snapchat can be valuable to a business. Most apps with a user base of over 100 million people typically tend to be of use for businesses. How do you unlock that value though? Here are 3 ways you can use Snapchat to help your business.

  1. Live Events. If your business is having a big event, Snapchat is a great way to broadcast it. Stories of live events are a great way to share your message and increase your publicity. Not only that but these stories are completely available to all of your followers and they won’t go away for a certain period of time. Either way this is a great way to get people excited for events as it brings forth a more authentic and exclusive view of everything going on.
  2. Behind the Scenes. People want to know more about your business. They want to know what your office looks like, what your employees are like, and what the office atmosphere is like. Showing everyone the fun stuff you do at the office can help you create a strong and loyal following. This is just a great way to show off the internal operations of your company to the public. The best part about this is that you can be creative with it. Creating certain events for office employees, filming birthdays, employee of the month announcements, you really can publicize your office in so many great ways!
  3. Contests/Promotions. Snapchat is a great place for promotion. It’s extremely easy to start fun new initiatives over the platform. So many fun campaigns have been started over Snapchat. So it’s easy to jump aboard and get your business’ name known across the forum. Not only that, but it’s a great place for contests. Posting stories about exclusive offers on products is a great way to get your name out there and generate more business.

 

Snapchat can be great for businesses. It’s very easy to create a loyal and engaged following for your company. The main characteristic pertaining to Snapchat is sharing. Well sharing is the main characteristic of any social media platform, but even more so for Snapchat. Snapchat helps you do something other mediums can’t do: share your internal efficiency. Snapchat, unlike other social media outlets, is an excellent means of revealing your office life and showing all the behind the scenes action of your business. That is something cherished by a lot of people and thus enables you to expand your fan base. So start snapping, make some fans and see your business grow!

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10 Aug

How Do Instagram Stories Affect Your Business

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media on 10.08.16 by John Meloche

Recently Instagram released a new feature called “stories”, where people can post photos that only last 10 seconds on their profile. These photos are available for all of one’s followers to see. This feature has become extremely controversial due to it’s striking resemblance to another social media app: Snapchat. Yesterday we talked about Snapchat and how it could help your business, today we’re going to look at the Instagram story feature and determine where it should stand in your business.

There are currently a lot of mixed views surrounding the feature. A lot of dedicated Snapchat users aren’t happy with the duplication of the Story feature. Due to this mixed reaction, it would be safe to avoid the stories option on Instagram for a bit. Just maybe another week to let the tension die down. Another note, if your business doesn’t have Snapchat then you might want to use the Instagram Story feature as a trial for Snapchat. If you’re getting good engagement numbers on Instagram, then getting Snapchat might further help your business.

Now if your business is on Snapchat, and you’re deciding whether or not you should post more frequently on Snapchat or Instagram, or even if you should use the Instagram feature, then do a test run. Post on Instagram stories and evaluate your engagement, keep track of how many people saw your story and replied to it. After you’ve done this, do the same on Snapchat. Finally compare the two numbers, whichever platform is receiving the most engagement is the platform you should be using more frequently.

Now the Instagram Story feud is still at large. So waiting a couple of days before making your Instagram story debut would be ideal. That being said, Instagram stories do have the ability to bring a Snapchat-like vibe to Instagram, and thus gives the app an increased potential for success.

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09 Aug

Should Your Business Be On Snapchat?

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media on 09.08.16 by John Meloche

We’ve discussed the benefits of social media and how social commerce is becoming more and more prominent within our business world. We’ve talked about the major social media outlets; however, we’ve neglected one: Snapchat. Snapchat is a medium through which people can send photos to each other. These photos can contain small messages and disappear in 10 seconds. In addition to this, people can post “stories,” 10 second photos that appear to all of one’s Snapchat friends. Now Snapchat is a very tricky option as it has a certain youthfulness to it that many businesses find hard to duplicate. The debate for businesses to have Snapchat is a contentious one but when managed properly, Snapchat can be a great asset for your business.

As I mentioned before Snapchat has a youthful aspect to it in the fact that messages literally disappear in 10 seconds or less. In addition to this, Snapchat has a very young audience. According to Statista, 60% of Snapchat’s audience are between the ages of 13-24. So what does that mean? It means that you can reach a younger audience over Snapchat. If your company targets people within that age group, then your marketing efforts can be intensified by promoting over snapchat. Snapchat is a great marketing tool that enables you to improve the selectivity of your promotional efforts as it essentially brings you right to a younger audience.

Another key Snapchat benefit is ease of communicati0n. Snapchat provides optimal means of one-on-one engagement. With Snapchat, it’s very easy to talk to individual followers. Not only that, but the pictures bring forth a more customized and reliable means of conversation. You can see when someone’s received a message and seen it too. You can develop more personalized messages as it’s easier to communicate with individual followers. What Snapchat really does is make you become more creative with your communication. It makes you become more people-friendly and better enables you to cater to someone’s individual likes/needs.

Snapchat is a very tricky medium, but when you take advantage of its key features, then you can claim a larger and more devoted user-base. Personalization is a characteristic cherished across any medium, Snapchat provides optimal customization and thus provides ample opportunity for success.

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02 Aug

Are Online Markets The New Norm?

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media, Synergy Suggestions on 02.08.16 by John Meloche

Over the past couple of years, we have seen an emergence of online transactions and E-commerce. It appears as though those fears people once had about online shopping have vanished. This sudden spike in E-commerce demand has sparked the debate over whether or not online markets are the new norm. So today we really look at the question: are online markets the new marketplace?

Let’s start this debate by looking at the facts. The U.S. Department of Commerce estimates that there will be $92,801 million in sales strictly from online shopping in the first quarter of 2016. Compared to $80,569 million from the first quarter of 2015. This is definitely a sign of prosperity for online shopping however these numbers are small when comparing it to the total market. Those numbers only represent 8 and 7 percent of total sales respectively. It’s clear online shopping is on the rise but when you look at the market as a whole it only represents a tiny sliver of all sales.

Now let’s look at some other compelling facts. But instead of looking at North America, let’s analyze different markets across the globe. Specifically let’s look at the major markets that impact the global economy the most. China is a huge country that’s a compelling figure in the global economic scene. Online shopping is practically the norm in China now. According to Statista, China had 46 million online shoppers in 2007, now they have over 400 million. Almost ten times as many people shop online compared to the number from 9 years ago. This trend is expected to continue at an even more exponential rate. It’s fair to say online shopping has skyrocketed in popularity in China. So with this information being present, it begs the question: If such a giant like China focuses on online shopping, then is it just a matter of time before online shopping really hits the North American market?

The debate of E-commerce becoming the primary marketplace is a good one. It’s very easy to argue on behalf of both sides. But do you actually see the North American markets adopting E-commerce? If so, when do you think that would happen? Let us know what you think. You can tweet us at @synergymkt or you can check us out on Facebook (just Synergy Marketing), and we’re on Instagram @synergymkt.

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28 Jul

5 Ways to Increase Your Instagram Reach Without Paying

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media on 28.07.16 by John Meloche

Concluding the big three with the most photogenic social media outlet, today we’re looking at Instagram. While this is the last of the big three social media mediums that we are covering, it certainly isn’t the smallest. According to DMR stats, Instagram has around 500 million monthly active users and 300 million daily active users. Instagram has become a cherished social media outlet over the years as people admire that there’s a true place to show their photographic memories. Despite this, businesses are struggling with their Instagram reach. There are easy and free ways to counteract these struggles. Here are 5 free things you can do to improve your Instagram reach:

  1. Twitter and Facebook Shout-outs. Just because you’re operating on all these mediums, doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to connect them. If you have a lot of likers on your Facebook page, or a lot of followers on Twitter, then use them to your advantage. A simple reminder to follow your Instagram page could go a long way. Essentially you’re just reaching out to different fans of yours across social media and trying to bring them all together.
  2. Post at the Right Time. Timing is extremely important on Instagram. You have to identify peak times for Instagram audiences. Typically, mornings aren’t too great because people are working, however, late afternoon/early night time is great for posting. Right after work people will go through their phone and check their Instagram feed. Maybe scroll through Instagram on their commute back from work. At night, you can catch audiences scrolling through their phones before bed time. Posting between 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. is ideal for optimizing the reach on your Instagram posts.
  3. Engage your Fans. The whole point of social media is to get your fans further involved in your business. You want them to garner support for your company and act as if they’re in it. So how do you do that? Well, you ask them questions. Comments are your best friend in this case. Get people to comment and share their opinions on your posts. Not only does this get your fans more involved with your business, but it allows you to develop a greater bond with them as well.
  4. Like Others’ Content. We’ve mentioned this before in previous blogs. People love it when you notice their posts. A subtle like or comment can result in another follower. Neil Patel from Quicksprout implemented this strategy and found that for every 100 likes he did of random pictures, he received 6.1 more followers.
  5. Be Careful with your Hashtags. Hashtags are a very contentious matter on social media, especially Instagram. According to Buffer Social, interactions are highest on Instagram posts with 11+ hashtags. Others would argue that you shouldn’t use that many hashtags. Sarah Dawley from Hootsuite, advises against the overuse of hashtags as too many can distract your audience and take away from your message. So what’s a safe number? 5-7 is a safe bet for getting a good reach while at the same time preventing the dilution of your core message.

 

There are a lot of small details, that when considered, can greatly increase your reach. Simply fine-tuning some minor things on your post can help you reach thousands, maybe even millions more people. So get on Instagram, tell your story, and make some friends.

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27 Jul

5 Ways to Gain Twitter Followers Without Paying

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media, Synergy Suggestions on 27.07.16 by John Meloche

Going along with our social commerce theme, we are now looking at another huge social media outlet: Twitter. Twitter is extremely popular and is still growing in size. According to DMR stats, 310 million people use Twitter and 100 million people are active daily users. What does that mean? Well just like Facebook, there’s a large crowd of people you don’t want to miss out on. Even with the enormous audience, businesses still struggle to expand their reach and connect with potential clientele. So today we’re looking at 5 free things you can do to increase your Twitter following:

  1. Post a lot. This is consistent across all social media outlets. You have to actively post in order to catch and keep the attention of new fans. Just make sure you’re actually posting consistent quality material.
  2. Connect with Similar Accounts.  Go out and explore Twitter and search for similar accounts like yours. Or even search for people who are interested in your industry’s work. Retweet, favorite, or comment on posts relevant to your company and start conversations. Not only is this a great way to bring people to your account, but it’s ideal for starting new relationships with fans over social media.
  3. Follow more people. This could be the simplest thing you can do. People take notice to new followers and occasionally you’ll get a follow back.
  4. Make Sure your Bio is good. Your bio is often the first thing a customer will see when they see your Twitter page. Not only that but it’s the first piece of info they will receive about your company. That little blurb of text is your businesses’ first impression. First impressions definitely matter, so make sure your bio is professional, informative, and intriguing. Don’t go on about your business; people don’t want to read a long paragraph and there’s a limit to your text.  Include all the info you believe is necessary for the twitter user to know. Again, I want to emphasize that a short bio is more effective; people have a short attention span and that attention span is even shorter on social media.
  5. Control your Hashtags. Although Twitter is the origin of hashtags, it’s not the most hashtag-friendly social media medium. It’s been proven that tweets with hashtags are more effective in terms of reach. however, too many can reverse that effect. How many is too many? Well according to Buddy Media, a tweet with one or two hashtags has 21% higher engagement than tweets with three or more hashtags. Not only this. but tweets with three or more hashtags have actually shown a 17% drop in engagement. It’s actually crazy to think that an additional hashtag can cost the reach of thousands of people. So your ideal tweet should contain one or two hashtags in order to optimize the reach on your posts.

 

While there is a lot of meticulous details with tweeting, it can open so many doors for your business. According to Jayson DeMers from Forbes, 36% of marketers say they have gained a customer by using Twitter. There is so much potential in social media and Twitter is just one of many social commerce opportunities for an expanded clientele base. So get on Twitter, follow these steps, and see your followers number and user base increase.

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26 Jul

5 Ways To Increase Your Facebook Reach Without Paying

Posted in Social Media, Synergy Suggestions on 26.07.16 by John Meloche

This week we are dedicating our blog to social commerce. We are finding ways to improve your presence across all the major social media mediums. First we are starting with one of the most famed and biggest social media outlets: Facebook. Right now more than 1 billion people are on Facebook. It is one of the most popular mediums, if not the most popular. With the immense audience present, you want to make sure you’re getting the most out of your posts. So here are 5 ways to help you increase the reach on your Facebook posts.

  1. Create a lot of Content. This just makes sense. You have to post a lot to actually get people’s attention. If you constantly create quality content, then expect the number of likes you have on your page to increase.
  2. Mix it up. Don’t just post pure text all the time. Include some pictures, links, interesting graphics, etc. Posting interesting content coupled with eye catching graphics can be critical for reaching new audiences.
  3. Incite Comments. A great way to get people on board with your Facebook page is to get them involved. Encourage your followers to comment on your posts; ask for their opinions. A great way to achieve this is by starting your posts off with a question to your followers.
  4. Get involved with Other People’s Pages. This is a great way to build social media relationships with fans. People and other pages love it when you notice and share their material. So when you do stuff like that, people appreciate it and are more inclined to return the favor.
  5. Don’t use Hashtags. This might come as a shock to you, but believe it or not hashtags aren’t too effective on Facebook. In fact, they’ve been proven to be the opposite. According to research from EdgeRank Checker, hashtags on Facebook have no positive effects on your posts’ reach. Posts without hashtags have actually been found to have a better reach than those containing hashtags. While hashtags may be ideal for other social media sites, it has not yet found its place on Facebook.

Reaching audiences on Facebook can be difficult but when it comes down to it, it’s all about building relationships with your fans. Showing them love will only lead to them doing the same.

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20 Jul

#Hashtag 2: How Do You Use Hashtags?

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media on 20.07.16 by John Meloche

Now that we know what hashtags are, and how they work. Our attention now shifts as to how we can use them to optimize our posts’ reach. Let’s look at how we can use hashtags in an effective manner:

  1. Posting Relevant Hashtags. We mentioned before hashtags categorize tweets. They act as a social media organizer. Well when you make a post with an irrelevant hashtag, you’re essentially putting it in the wrong category. All that does is create confusion within the audience you’d like to reach. A disengagement is formed between your posts and your audience, and as a result you harm your reach. Moral of the story is, when your posting something, make sure you use appropriate and relevant hashtags. You’ll create more genuine interest that way and increase your reach.
  2. Not overusing Hashtags. While it may seem like it’s beneficial to use a lot of hashtags, it’s actually been proven to be detrimental to a post’s reach. Too many hashtags can send a poor vibe to your audience. Sometimes when people see an absurd amount of hashtags, they see it as a pathetic or desperate attempt to reach a lot of people. It can reflect poorly on your social media efforts and company.
  3. Use Hashtag tracking tools. There are now websites and apps dedicated to determining the effectiveness of your hashtags. These tools are designed to allow you to pick the most relevant and popular hashtags. They allow you to be more efficient and effective with your hashtags. Some examples of hashtag tracking tools are hashtagify.me, RiteTag, Tagboard, etc.

Hashtags can be extremely effective when used properly. There a couple of blatantly obvious things that you should avoid when using hashtags. However, with all the advanced social media tools present today, #hashtag optimization has become more realistic and easy to achieve.

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18 Jul

Why Do #hashtags Matter To Your Business?

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Social Media on 18.07.16 by John Meloche

One of the most amazing things about social media is that you have the ability to reach millions simply by typing one word. Of course that word would have to proceed a pound sign, or hashtag. But how do hashtags allow you to reach these people? Let’s take a look at how hashtags can amplify your posts’ reach.

Hashtags start by making your posts more searchable and easier to find. When you enter a hashtag on your posts you’re essentially opening up your post to a variety of people. Hashtags are used to categorize tweets and let people see all the tweets pertaining to a particular category. Usually you’ll cover a major topic relevant to your post. Ideally you’ll use a hashtag that’s covering something that’s trending and thus will open your posts to an immense audience. When these stories become trendy, people then become more interested and want to know as much as possible. This means that they’ll look at every post that relates to that popular topic and hence will look at all the posts using that trendy hashtag.

Hashtags are even more powerful now as users can now look up hashtags. This allows users to have easier access to posts about new, trendy topics. Before these posts would be revealed after clicking a hashtag from a post, but now it is much easier to deeply explore prominent topics.

Hashtags are a very powerful tool; they can help open doors to millions of people. When used properly, they can be your best friend. So keep the #hashtags rolling, and amp up your social media presence.

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