Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Exciting New Instagram Features!

Prepare yourself for a new Instagram! According to a blog post by the social media company last Friday, Instagram will be unveiling a new algorithmic timeline. Your new Instagram timeline will feature what the company thinks you're most interested in rather than just ordering your feed chronologically.
These changes are already live for many users, and should be coming to the rest of the Instagram nation "soon" says the company. Users may worry that their posts will become less relevant to their followers, but Instagram reassures that won't be the case as users who have had access to the new timeline have already been more engaged with posts than the timeline using the old chronological algorithm. 
According to the aforementioned blog post that the company posted on Friday, "With this new ordering you won't miss any of your favorite bands' videos after their concerts, even if it took place across the world in a different time zone. And no matter how many accounts you follow, you should see your best friend's latest posts". So love it or loathe it, prepare yourself for a brand new style of Instagram feed.
Want to have the ability to manage your social media accounts while working on the go, but don't want to pay the full price? Why not rent a tablet?

Thursday, June 02, 2016

Instagram Announces New Tools For Business Accounts

 The most notable feature is going to be a contact button added to the profiles of businesses. This feature will make it easier for consumers to interact with businesses outside of Instagram. In addition, companies will also be able to add an email address, phone contact, and even an address with directions (for businesses in which a physical location is important).

In the past, many Instagram users (businesses and consumers alike) have relied on sifting through comment after comment to connect with their customers on the platform.
However, in the new update, Instagram will try to refocus businesses to the private messaging feature that is already available.

Furthermore, users whom have business profiles will have access to detailed analytics -- a first for the Instagram platform. These analytics will be much like the view available to current businesses on Facebook.

For example, the analytics will show a detailed view at post engagement audience and follower demographics.

Small business users will find the platform's overhaul particularly appealing. Whereas large companies have been advertising on the platform for some time, many small business users also rely on the app to drum up new business.

With the platform's new promotional tools, small and large businesses alike will be able to reach beyond their current followers via sponsored posts. Much like Facebook, Instagram users will be able to select a target audience and call to action for their advertisements.

Though the already 400 million user-strong platform has had advertising for quite awhile, the new overhaul will give business users a much better mobile experience to broadcast to the customer as well as to optimize their information.

Furthermore, Instagram promises that these changes are only the tip of the iceberg for business application of their platform.

Content originally posted here

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Google Parent Company Alphabet Making Moonshot Projects Pay For Themselves

You know Google's Moonshot projects that have become so famous lately? Well, they are about to become a lot more financially responsible here soon. Alphabet, which is the new parent company over Google, has plans to make some of the most ambitious (or unrealistic) divisions more fiscally responsible. How you might ask? Well by requiring them to front the bill for things like recruiting, finance, marketing and other "backoffice" corporate necessities instead of letting their mommy pay for them.

Alphabet has a wide range of standalone moonshot companies that include Google X and Google Life Sciences. Google X is a super secret evil lair lab that developed projects like self-driving cars and Google Glass back in the day. Google Life Sciences was a very ambitious health care research branch. Naturally the overlords at Google are keeping tight-lipped about all of this and refusing to comment on the subject.

However, this arrangement keeps in line with what Google has been trying to do over the past couple months, trying to show Wall Street that it has the ability to corral some of its high costs for areas outside of its core online advertising business while also offering a more sustainable goal for innovation in the future.

In the beginning of the year, former Morgan Stanley CFO Ruth Porat was hired as Google's new CFO in order to help the company improve its relationship with its investors on Wall Street. Porat has been touting the need for "ongoing expense discipline" for a while now, which could sound boring to Google users but is basically the sweetest thing an investor can hear.

During her time at Google, the company has surpassed Wall Street estimates for profits twice in a row after being on a losing streak for six straight quarters. In addition to that, Google has also decided to push forward with its long-awaited plan to create its own holding company (Alphabet) which is expected to provide the company more transparency for the financials of Google's cornucopia of investments.

What people need to understand is that this new decision isn't one that was made to cripple the most ambitious projects at Google but is, in fact, designed to ensure that each one of these projects is self-sufficient and able to stand alone as its own business while surviving independently. This could also mean that each of these Moonshot businesses could be spun off at a later date.

There is definitely a lot of interesting things happening over in the Google camp, but they all seem to be pretty positive. Hopefully, this move by Google appeases investors and allows the company to really start innovating and creating even more things for the future.

Content originally published here
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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Starting Your Business On Social Media

Are you trying to launch a presence for your business in the world of social media? It's not as easy as some might have you believe. Creating a strong foundation on social media will assist you in building visibility and connections for your business. The world revolves around social media and the platforms we have today are some of the best ways to interact with customers and really understand what they want and how you can give it to them. So what are you supposed to do and how are you supposed to do it? Come with me and I'll show you.

Make Sure Your Profiles Are Filled Out

It is imperative that you take all of your social media profiles and fill them out completely. Incomplete or inactive social media business accounts give users little to no reason to like your page or follow you. In addition to that, inactivity will also probably have the same effect. It's amazing how many social profiles are out there that are incomplete or inactive for months and even years.

Make sure you keep these questions in mind when filling out your social media profiles: What will people gain from following? Do profile summaries and descriptions include Who, What, Where, and Why? Is your contact information clearly visible and up-to-date?

Share Buttons Are Critical

The easier it is for people to share your content on their own social media the more likely they are to actually do it. That is why you need to make sure that your blogs and pages have social media sharing buttons installed. Almost every single blogging platform out there these days has plugins and options for adding social media sharing buttons to your posts so there's really no excuse not to have them other than laziness.

Request Feedback From Customers

Customer reviews have a very real effect on consumers. How often do people read reviews on products they are buying off Amazon? How many times to people check out Yelp before going out to a restaurant? The answer is all the time. Research shows that people take online customer reviews and opinions into account when they have to make a purchase decision. If you're not getting a lot of reviews from customers then you should try asking people to post a review on Google, Facebook, or another social media channel that you are interested in. This is the perfect way to find out what customers think and how they feel about your products and/or services.

The More Profiles The Better

If you really want to succeed in social media for your business then making just a Facebook account or Twitter account won't cut it. You need to target as many social media platforms as possible, including LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and even Tumblr. All of these accounts may seem unnecessary at first, but it is absolutely critical to the success of your business and gets what you want to say out to as many people as possible. Heck even using Snapchat has started to become a thing for businesses.

Don't Block Blog Comments

Commenting systems, including Facebook, Livefyre, and Disqus, make it very easy for people to interact with your content through social media. Each of these systems has certain advantages to them as well. Livefyre is great if you are trying to encourage discussion and is used by sites like Hootsuite, CNET, and New York Magazine. Disqus offers very good moderating tools and requires users to make an account prior to posting comments. However, make sure you moderate your comments sections for things like spammers.

Make A Connection With Followers

Social media, believe it or not, is about being social! If you only make posts about your products and services in an attempt to generate sales then you will more than likely have all of those efforts fall on deaf ears. Unless you are actively speaking with people, your message won't get heard. You don't have to respond to every single comment, but you should try to start some type of interaction with your followers by responding to questions or giving out more information when and where it is needed. This lets people know that you are, in fact, a human being and not some autonomous robot.

Well, there you have it! If your business is new or just new to social media then these tips should help you get the ball rolling in no time! Remember, social media is the very best way to engage with your customers and really spread your company, your products, and your brand as far as possible!

Content originally published here
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Thursday, October 22, 2015

5 Tips For Repurposing Your Old Content

We can't deny the fact that we all have blogs on our sites that just seem to be gathering dust. Besides the random view or comment on an old post, our older content gets overlooked A LOT! Mainly because it's either outdated or Google tends to want to focus on more of the newer indexed material.

Your content should never go to waste, especially when there are numerous ways to repurpose your old content. You've already done the research needed, so just update, change the format and get more out of your blogs.

Refresh Your Old Material

The archives of your already existing blogs contain tons of info that you can easily reuse. You've already posted the content, so you know which blogs worked better than others. This gives you a good idea of what you can successfully reuse.

But this time, instead of using the exact same article, try adding a little more information here and there. Add small details in the blog, that you know has worked before.

Take into consideration, college textbooks. Their basic structure as a book doesn't change from year to year. New information just gets added to the pre-existing content. It gives the companies a quick turnaround and room to upcharge on the new textbook.

Turn Blog Posts Into SlideShare Presentations

If you take your old blog posts and turn them into SlideShare presentations, it will increase your traffic and may even get you new leads on clientele. SlideShare is only growing bigger and bigger, and having you share in that will get you, new viewers and potential customers. The best method to having great SlideShare posts is great imagery and well-presented information.

Keep in mind, when you save your infographics to SlideShare, it has to be saved in a one-page PDF format before you upload it. This will then have SlideShare automatically detect it as an infographic and list it in the infographic directory.

Create Top Ten Lists

Lists tend to do great on the Internet! Take some info from your most successful posts and create top ten lists out of them. Then you can link your original blog post with the clips in the list and draw traffic back to your site.

Start A Newsletter

By sending out newsletters to your clients, you can introduce them to content they might be intrigued by. If you use outside articles for the content of your newsletter, make sure you provide your sources, so you don't get in trouble for copy writing.

Use Small Clips From Old Posts

Some of the most powerful content doesn't come from long blogs. It's just snippets of those quality articles that gets you interested. Post clips with links back to your original blog and watch the traffic you draw in.

All in all, don't ignore your old content. Those old blogs can easily be brushed off, polished up, and reposted as new content, with very little effort. Aside from the examples provided, research some more ways you can get more value out of those old blogs. You'd be amazed at what you can do with all that content you've already worked hard on!

Content originally published here
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Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Facebook's Instant Articles Wants To Replace All Your New Sources

Back in the day, people used to get their news from things called newspapers. Then the television was invented and people, while still getting most of their news from newspapers, started to get their news from news reporters on TV. Then the internet came along and people starting getting their news online. Well, now Facebook wants to be your new source of all things news.

The social media platform is launching its Instant Articles features for its mobile app to more users, which will allow them to browse headlines, read articles, and watch news videos directly on their smartphones, according to the company.

Instant Articles was released in a limited capacity five months ago and is designed specifically for Facebook's mobile readers. According to Facebook, the features loads news stories 10x faster than a standard website and also uses Facebook's advertising software, promising faster loading and more attractive layouts.

According to Manager of the Instant Articles Team Chris Cox, "The most important thing we pay attention to is providing daily value. Daily use is something we care about." Cox was recently at The Wall Street Journal's WSJDLive conference in Southern California.

Instant Articles is just the most recent venture by Facebook to be in every facet of our lives. Facebook has already replaced things like photo albums, blogs, and instant messenger and now it is ready to replace you news services by giving you instant access to news wherever you are. Facebook has already said that it plans to publish 1,000 articles per day via partnerships with magazines, websites, and daily newspapers, including National Geographic, Time, USA Today, and CNET.

Facebook also announced that the Instant Articles feature now works with all Apple iPhones and that they are running a public test of the feature on phones that use Google's Android operating system. The stories are published on your News Feed in the Facebook app and when you tap on them, the stories fill the screen almost instantly. The feature doesn't require you to check outside news sources, like The New York Times, though Facebook believes that this makes the service more appealing.

Facebook also says that Instant Articles is part of a years-long effort to revitalize the service to work better with mobile devices and in more situations. There are currently 1.31 billion people using the Facebook app at least once per month so Facebook is trying to ensure that it works anywhere in the world, even over poor wireless connections and on lower-end smartphones. To do this, Facebook made the app use less data and work faster.

The more people that use the app, the more ads Facebook will be able to show you. This means more money. Facebook is the second-largest internet destination for advertising revenue, generating over 18% of the ad dollars spent online last year. That number is expected to increase to more than 20% by 2017. Cox didn't elaborate on how many Instant Articles are being read or shared by users.

Content originally posted here
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Friday, October 09, 2015

Improve Your Social Media Posts With These 5 Psychology Tips

Social media is a vital part to any successful business. However, a lot of businesses seem to have trouble with this certain aspect. Some have problems engaging with their audience. Others have lackluster posts. Some just don't keep their social media up and running frequently enough. If you want to get more out of your social media, then you need to tailor your content specifically so that it appeals to your audience on an emotional level. But how do you do that you might ask? With these simple tips.

Colors Speak Louder Than Words

Making the most out of color choices will help you get the most engagement out of your audience. Before you start posting things on social media you need to choose a color that goes with your brand. This color choice will not only represent your business but also impact your followers on a psychological level. Rob Russo uses visually striking colors on his Twitter account that draws the attention of his followers. That's what you want to try to do. You want to make your content pop and separate itself from the other dribble that floods social media feeds.

Hit Them Right In The Feels

If you can connect with your audience on an emotional level, especially if that emotional level is happiness, then you can positively impact your social media posts. Sporting good companies, like Nike, Adidas, Reebok, etc... do this often by showing emotional moments in sports and putting captions on them that give you some sense of positivity. You may be unaware, but you are actually eliciting some type of emotion with all of your social media posts. Make the most of your posts by sharing good things with your followers.

Pictures Speak Louder Than Words...

The image you have on your social media posts is the window through which all your content is viewed, so it needs to have an impact. You need to pick an image that shows what you're trying to say in your post. You've heard of Red Bull I imagine? Well, Red Bull's Instagram account is always posting images that attempt to inspire their followers to enjoy life and look for new adventure. Good pictures also help your content stand out from everything else, which is what you should be trying to accomplish. However, you need to ensure that your images are relevant to your target audience. Never forget your target audience.

...But Words Are Still Important Too

After you create your post, your call to action, or whatever, you need to write a description. Did you know there's a Law of Attraction? Well, it states that "like attracts like", so it is probably a good idea to begin your description with words that you know people want to hear or like to hear. There are six words that usually work well: Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How. These words have a tendency to create an emotional response that really captures peoples' attention. There are other trigger words that you could use, though make sure you are using positive trigger words!

Conversation Starters Are Key

If you want people to open up then you have to find the right way to introduce conversation into your social media posts. The easiest way to do this is, simply, to ask for it. Start your post with a question or end it with a question or a statement that invites open discussion. If you establish communication with your followers then you will better discover what they need and want and how you can give it to them.

You need to really put some thought into each aspect of your social media posts. This includes images, colors, descriptions, emotional connections and more. The above tips will help you connect with your followers and really get the most out of your social media campaign.

Content originally published here
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