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Laura B. Poindexter is a renowned thought leader, guiding clients through the changing electronic marketing and social media environment. Her public seminars have helped thousands of business owners learn and employ affordable marketing solutions. Since 2000, her company, Queenb Creative (formerly laura b creative), has managed clients’ online presence, maximized their social media and electronic marketing to positively impact their bottom line and enhance audience engagement.

07 June 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Should I Use the Latest Social Media Platform?

5 Tips to Decide

There are so many social media platforms available for businesses and it’s often hard to decide which platforms you should use. You are hearing advice from all over that you HAVE to be on this platform or that. With my clients, I utilize my 3 Cs of Social Media to determine which platforms to utilize in the custom social media strategy I design for them, but what do we do to evaluate the latest and greatest, in-the-news platforms?

    1. Initially, you want to do some general research on what type of platform it is. Why was it built? What type of content is shared? Who were the early adopters? Make a note of those influencers who are quoted in the articles, we will need them for step 3. This should give you a general idea of what is going on with a platform. Once you decide from this initial review that it may be a platform your business should consider, I recommend these steps:

      Snapchat Snapcode for @laurabcreative

      My Snapchat Snapcode

    2. Secure Your Handle. Download the app, create an account, and secure your handle. Remember we want a consistent handle across all platforms so try to match your existing social media handles. The advantage of jumping on early is that you should be able to secure your handle. I’m @laurabcreative everywhere.
    3. Complete Your Profile. Now, upload your profile image or logo and complete your profile including your website URL and any other pertinent info. Make sure it matches the imagery, logo, and branding of your other profiles.
    4. Listen. This is the biggest step. Don’t jump on and start pushing out content. First, find influencers in your industry or just early adopters on the platform and see what they are doing. Make sure you choose people who are using the platform well – remember any influencers mentioned in your initial research. Find brands that are doing well that speak to your same target audience so you are seeing both individuals and brand voices. Be sure to follow more than one or two. You may find you just don’t like the style of some of the people and need to find others to follow. There are some bloggers/authors that I love but I don’t enjoy their Snapchat stories, for example, so I don’t follow them there.The benefit of listening is not just to see what other people are doing but also to get an idea of the culture of the platform so when you start producing content (if that is what you decide), you will be up to speed.
    5. Decision Time. Does this new platform make sense for your business and your audience?
      1. If the answer is yes, now you need to integrate this new platform into your existing social media strategy. What type of content are you going to share? What is the goal of the platform for your business? Is this something you can do well? Remember we are not just going to start autoposting our content here. For more, read Friends Don’t Let Friends Autopost.
      2. If the answer is no, this platform doesn’t make sense for your business right now. That’s okay. Be sure not to add this profile link to your website, email signature, or anything else. If you are not participating, you don’t want to be driving people there. But, you should leave your completed profile up for SEO reasons and so you will be well-positioned should this platform make sense for your social media strategy in the future.

I hope these tips will help you make sense of the ever-changing online world. Did this process help you to choose or disqualify any platform? Let me know in the comments.

29 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Generating Immediate Audience Feedback with a Faux Survey

Do you want to know what your audience wants? You should ask them.

But, you may have reservations about conducting a survey even if it’s just a few questions.

Over the past year, I have gained incredible insight into my audience by using a simple technique I call the faux survey (H/T to Digital Marketer for the term).

What’s a faux survey? It’s one question in the text of an email with multiple choice answers.

[We should note that Constant Contact does have a great survey tool that I use with my clients as well but sometimes I only have one question or I want immediate results. When that is the case, I use the faux survey.]

I ask one question in the text of an email and then list the multiple choice answers. I create different hyperlinks for each of the answers. This not only makes the survey results as easy as checking my click through rates but it also gives me added marketing exposure because my audience is now going where I want them to go.

You can also create a simple 2 or 3 answer faux survey using images like this example for a restaurant:

How was your meal?
Thumbs-Up-Circle Thumbs-Down-Circle

 

Sounds easy, right? But does it work? Of course, or I wouldn’t be writing about it.

Here are a few case studies for you:

Case Study 1: Content Consumption by Laura B. Poindexter

I wanted to know how my audience consumed content. I really wanted to start a podcast. I listen to podcasts. I love them. I started out my career in radio. I love to talk. I really thought podcasting was for me. So, I asked my audience.

Here’s the email:

My Faux Survey #1

Curious about my results? Considering I speak a lot both at live events and through webinars, I knew those 2 would score well. That is how I have built my list so it makes sense. The only result that really surprised me was the answer for podcasting. Can you guess how many people listen to podcasts? 1.92% That’s it. I was so sad. I mean there are always arguments for why I might want to podcast like to reach a new/different audience, but this is MY audience. This list is how I have built my business over the last 16 years. Surely I should start with what they are telling me.

The good news: think of all the time and money I didn’t waste on launching my own podcast. Now, I still love podcasts and it’s not off the table forever, just for right now. However, I am happy to dip my toe in the water (with little investment on my part) by being a guest on other people’s podcasts.

Added Benefit

The added benefit of this strategy is in the link locations. Not only are you training your audience to click on your emails but you can also send them wherever you want through the link, just be sure it’s relevant. For the survey above, answering “I like to read blog posts” would take you here:

Sniply to Blog

See the note at the bottom? I used Sniply to add the note at the bottom which helped to explain why they were redirected.

But wait, there’s more…after a few weeks, I went back into the email reporting and segmented the respondents into new lists based on their answers. If I ever launch a podcast, you can bet that handful of people will be the first to know.

I also took this opportunity to ask a bonus question for those not in the Washington DC area and sent them to my webinar calendar. I also then removed them from my local events list.

sniply not DC

I like to say marketing is just about staying in front of your audience until they are ready to buy your product or service. (click on the bird to tweet that)Tweet: Marketing is staying in front of your audience until they are ready to buy your product or service @laurabcreative http://ctt.ec/cLH0O+

This email received an initial 25% open rate and a 16% click through rate. And to improve results, I used this strategy to Increase My Open Rate by 30% (which it did) bringing the total open rate to over 30%.

I’d say that’s LOTS of positives above and beyond the info I gained, just by strategically asking one question.

Case Study 2: Net Promoter Score, Data Services Company

My client wanted to implement a Net Promoter Score survey and track their results with clients post contract completion.

So we implemented a simple faux survey that asked if they were likely to recommend the business to anyone. As per Net Promoter Score standard, scores between 0-6 are Detractors (so there was a problem), 7-8 are labeled Passives (they are happy but not likely to promote), 9-10 are Promoters (also know as your raving fans). We set up 3 landing pages with the following messaging:

Scores 9-10: Thank you so much, here’s how you can recommend us with clickable links

Scores 7-8: Thank you for your business. Let us know if we can help you in the future.

Scores 0-6: We are sorry to hear that we did not exceed your expectations, please contact us if there is anyway for us to serve you better. This page included a link t0 book a phone call directly with the CEO.

 

So you can see how powerful this simple strategy can be for your organization.

I’d love to know how you plan to implement a faux survey in your organization and if you felt this was helpful, please let me know in the comments below.

If you’d like more helpful tips like this and access to me to answer your questions, please join my free Facebook Group for small businesses and nonprofit marketers at www.marketing-hive.com.

 

 

11 March 2016 ~ 1 Comment

Create a Facebook Your Business Video in 5 minutes or Less

Have you created your Facebook Your Business Story video yet?

This new feature was just released by Facebook and allows you to make a quick showcase video of for your business page.

Laura's Facebook My Business VideoHere’s how you do it:

1. Log in to Facebook.

2. Go to yourbusinessstory.fb.com

3. Watch a few videos to get a feel for the format. Then choose “Create Video”

3. Choose and arrange 8 photos from your business page

4. Complete the sentence “We’re in the business of…” You’ve got 90 characters.

5. Choose one of the 4 options for music.

6. Review your video. Edit if necessary.

7. Post to your page.

8. After the video posts you can edit the title, add video tags, and add the call to action at the end just like all other Facebook videos.

9. The video is 15 seconds so it’s perfect for Instagram. So post it to your Instagram.

Check out this video tutorial of me creating the Facebook Your Story video for Social Media Day DC. Isn’t the last image cool?

 

Okay, what are you waiting for? Go create your video, then share it below so I can check it out.

07 March 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Repurposing Instagram Content without Autoposting

Repurpose Instagram Title ImageYou many know I’m not a fan of autoposting from one social media platform to another. Every platform has a different culture and different norms in terms of content. This practice of autoposting also defeats the entire social aspect of social media. You should be engaging in conversation with your audience, not just pushing your updates on them.

There are, however, best practices to repurpose your content across platforms to avoid many of the pitfalls of autoposting. Here I tackle how to repurpose your Instagram content on Twitter and Facebook along with step-by-step instructions below this how to video.


I apologize for the vertical nature of this video. I couldn’t screencast from my phone horizontally. I suggest you click on the Full Screen button on the bottom right of the video to make it bigger.

I wrote in Friends Do Not Let Friends Autopost why you should not autopost your Instagram to Twitter. Here’s what I said…

Instagram makes it easy to post to other platforms when you publish your photo. However, when you post from Instagram to Twitter, the image does not carry over; instead it is converted to a link. So create that Instagram image and publish on Instagram, then go into Twitter or an app that posts images to Twitter and upload the photo.

Here are some more reasons not to publish from Instagram to Twitter:

  • The hashtag conventions on Twitter and Instagram are different.
  • The number of characters allowed on Twitter is limited.
  • Links do not hyperlink in Instagram updates so should not be included. However, Twitter is all about links so you definitely want to include them in your updates.
  • Are the people you are tagging on Instagram using the same handle on Twitter? They should be but if they don’t you may be tagging someone else.

Repurposing Instagram images on Twitter

But what if you want to use that same image on Twitter? Here’s the easiest way to do that.

  1. Post your update to Instagram.
  2. Go to Instagram and select the share option which is found in the menu just below the image on the right.
  3. The post will open up and you can select the text from your update. Select all and Copy.
  4. Compose a new tweet in Twitter.
  5. Paste your text and edit for space and Twitter conventions including links and hashtags.
  6. Select the camera icon to add media. Navigate to the Instagram image and add it to your update.
  7. Publish

It only takes a minute or two, but it is worth it to share your image on Twitter as an image instead of a link.

Repurposing Instagram images on Facebook

In that same article, I said…

I do sometimes (not all the time) post from Instagram to Facebook. After publishing on Instagram, I go back to the image and choose SHARE, choose Facebook, and edit the update removing the tagging and hashtags. I most often do this when I am at an event. This can also help build your Instagram audience from Facebook because the image will have a link to your Instagram profile. The images are perfectly square which works great on Facebook especially on mobile. I tend to share a wider variety of images on Instagram so I definitely do not just post all my Instagram photos to Facebook. I pick and choose a few choice images to share to Facebook.

Here’s the best way to post your Instagram images to Facebook.

  1. Post your update to Instagram.
  2. Go to Instagram and select the share option which is found in the menu just below the image on the right.
  3. The post will open up and you edit the text from your update.
  4. Select Facebook underneath the update.
  5. Publish

Please note: You won’t be able to tag other pages but you can post this update and then go to Facebook to edit the update and tag as needed.

Did you find this post helpful? Let me know below in the comments.