Post by Adi Englander

adi-englander

The Internet is undergoing another major transformation. Video is utterly and completely taking over, and live streams are the bells of the digital ball. Digital video’s extreme popularity is not isolated to YouTube and live broadcasts, however, as webinars are also proving to be an increasingly prominent tool.

In a recent 2016 benchmark report conducted by custom webinar service provider, ClickMeeting, it was uncovered that more than 554,000 webinars were held in 2016; a 35% increase over the previous year.

What makes platforms like ClickMeeting, and webinars as a whole, so powerful is not only the popularity and intimacy touted in live video, but also the reuse value obtained from recorded versions as each has the potential to acquire emails, drive traffic, conversions, sales, and more.

Using such solutions allows users to create highly-personalized experiences with polls and surveys, branding elements, waiting room agendas, and other features that audiences adore.

Before we expose how to effectively leverage social media marketing for your next webinar, let’s first discuss the core elements that keep attendees engaged.

Webinar best practices

In the previously mentioned ClickMeeting report, it was noted that roughly 49% of a webinar’s registrants will actually attend. The average number of attendees per webinar was about 26 over the course of 2016, meaning that a brand needs to know when to promote their upcoming lesson in order to drive the highest number of attendees possible.

ClickMeeting’s research reveals that the best time to promote and broadcast webinars is on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays as these are the days when most folks are not busy planning their week ahead or are engrossed in weekend activities. Additionally, broadcasting the webinar between 10 am and 2pm is most advantageous as it caters to east and west coast prospects.

No matter what time you hold the broadcast, you need to keep your audience’s attention. This means that the webinar cannot be too long and needs to be structured correctly.

Most viewers will tune out at the beginning of a webinar if it doesn’t captivate them, meaning that the most important info should be towards the beginning. Additionally, keep the webinar to an hour or less so as to not test people’s perseverance.

It is also wise to announce there will be a Q&A session at the end to try and get folks to stick around for the entire presentation.

And since mobile is one of the driving forces behind the demand for online video, your webinar solution needs to be optimized for mobile; an average of 25% of webinar attendees tune in from a mobile device. This also means that you should optimize your materials for mobile as well by using large images and avoiding small text.

With this knowledge under your belt, it’s time to start using social media’s reach to drive a sizable crowd.

The social spotlight

Before you actually begin promoting your webinar, it is best to start creating some hype around its topic. Start by posting questions to your audience and engaging in the comments section as well as publishing and sharing blog posts that show your intimate understanding of the problem. These can also be used as a promotional vehicle by including a webinar signup CTA at the end.

After generating a bit of buzz, start creating and publishing social posts across all of your existing accounts that let your followers know about the event. Be sure to include a shortened URL by using Bit.ly. This will make it easier for Twitter followers to share the post as well as provide analytics around the clicks driven from each social network so that you can find out which are most prosperous. You will need to create a unique URL to be shared on each platform for this to work.

To help increase the discoverability of your posts, craft and include a unique and relevant hashtag on your Twitter and Instagram posts; hashtags are not as beneficial on Facebook.

Additionally, your posts need to include a compelling and applicable image. It is important to note, however, that image size optimization varies from platform to platform. Here are the dimensions you will want to apply to avoid image distortion:

  • Facebook: 1,200 x 628 pixels
  • Instagram: 1,080 x 1,080 pixels
  • Twitter: 1,024 x 512 pixels
  • LinkedIn: 700 x 400 pixels

To help increase the visibility and number of signups your webinar generates, paid social ads are a powerful and effective solution. Using this method, you can reach people who would be most interested by targeting them based on age, location, interests, and various other options.

Moreover, Facebook provides custom and lookalike audiences so that you can direct your efforts towards people who recently visited your website, are on your email list or are similar to people who are already interested in your brand.

When creating social media ads, you will want to include all of the aforementioned elements. It is also necessary to structure your promotion in a way that will be most beneficial for driving registrations.

Use the ad’s intro text (above the image) to briefly address the webinar’s topic, the benefits attendees will receive, guest speakers that will be involved (if applicable), and what folks need to do to sign up.

Using the allotted space below the image, be sure to highlight the main benefits using lines like “FREE webinar training on XXX,” “Learn how to XXX with this FREE webinar,” or something similar.

Webinars can be monstrously effective at building email lists, driving conversions and sales, along with other digitally-focused goals when they are structured and promoted correctly. Using these guidelines, you should be able to craft a compelling webinar that drives tons of signups and helps you reach your designated KPIs.

Source: Social Media

content
Chris Dlugosz / Creative Commons BY

Attract customers by building a relationship with your audience

Target audience: Businesses, brands, digital marketers, advertising agencies, SEO specialists, entrepreneurs, Web publishers, video producers, freelance journalists.

Post by Megan Totka
ChamberofCommerce.com

MeganTotkaAfew years ago, the catchphrase “content is king” sprouted up, sending marketers into a content creation frenzy. Now, there’s more than enough content available online to take us through the next eon! So marketers have to find other ways to interact with that content.

The result? Content curation. It’s the perfect counterpart to creating content: by sharing other useful articles, videos, and blog posts with your audience, you build a relationship with them that isn’t 100% all about your brand. And that, in turn, helps you build trust and connections with your audience.

Find the balance

1So we have content creation (writing blog articles, creating videos, etc.) and we have content curation (sharing others’ articles, videos, etc.). How do you find the balance between the two?

There’s no precise ratio of created to curated content. For many, it’s simply easier to curate content, since all you have to do is scour your social stream or find great content in your own research and share it. Also, sharing other people’s content shows you’re not all about self-promotion, and care about your followers’ interests.

Know what to curate

2Just as you want to have a variety of types of content on your own blog or social media stream, you also want to vary what you share.

  • Blog content: Other individuals and brands are writing phenomenal content on your industry or areas of interest, and your social media followers want access to the best. Spend time each week reading articles and posts, and then share what resonates.
  • Videos: Some people engage better with video than text, so appeal to them by sharing videos. (Bonus tip: Facebook is a great place to share videos, since 8 billion videos are being viewed there a day!)
  • Infographics: Get the best of both worlds with infographics, which offer a visual interpretation of data.
  • Poignant social updates: Sometimes people just share good information on social media without linking elsewhere. Conferences are great fodder for material to share with your audience. Just follow the hashtag people are using for the event and curate the best tidbits.

Know where to curate

3You can also diversify where you curate and share content:

  • Your blog: Try a weekly roundup of the best content on a given topic relevant to your audience.
  • Your social stream: Share what others on social media are sharing to help it get a wider reach. When sharing content directly from a website, be sure to include author’s Twitter or other social media handle so they know you’re sharing it.
  • Content curation tools: There are websites like Scoop.it where you can share the content you love with your social audience.
  • Your video channels: Videos, too, can be curated. If you use YouTube, create a channel for a particular topic and include both your videos and others’. Remember: effective storytelling, including videos, can help you reach even more people. And curating others’ videos is easy; you don’t even have to create your own!
  • Your email newsletter: If you send a monthly newsletter, the content in it doesn’t all have to be sourced from your blog. Add links from around the Web to enhance what you share with subscribers.

Both content creation and content curation help you build a relationship with your audience. Find the balance between the two, and you’ll have the winning formula to attracting more customers!

Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources and business news. Megan has several years of experience on the topics of small business marketing, copywriting, SEO, online conversions and social media. Megan spends much of her time establishing new relationships for ChamberofCommerce.com, publishing weekly newsletters educating small business on the importance of web presence, and contributing to a number of publications on the web. Megan can be reached at megan@chamberofcommerce.com.

 

Source: Social Media

In 1993, at the very dawn of the World Wide Web, Peter Steiner, an illustrator at The New Yorker, created an iconic cartoon. It featured two dogs in front of a computer. One of them said to the other, “On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.” It was an instant smash, pinned on office […]

The post How to Create an Awesome About Page appeared first on Who Is Hosting This: The Blog.

Source: Web Hosting

How Accelerated Mobile Pages can fuel your mobile marketing strategy

Target audience: Businesses, brands, mobile marketers, digital marketers, advertising agencies, SEO specialists, entrepreneurs, educators, journalists, Web publishers.

Post by Anna Rodriguez

annaA lot has been said about Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) and how it affects business owners, startups and digital marketers. AMP is a Google-backed open-source project that launched last February as an open standard to make it easier for any publisher to have pages load quickly on mobile devices.

In an increasingly mobile world, AMP is a tool or open source framework that speeds up browsing when you’re using a mobile phone or or tablets. Think of it an easy way to build lightweight web pages.

canyon

Photo courtesy of Unsplash via Pexels

The wonders of AMP

AMP, like Facebook’s Instant Articles and Apple’s Apple News, is designed to reduce bounce rates and improve users’ social media experience. With this framework, publishers need not worry that their target audience is ignoring their content because it’s too cumbersome to read on a smartphone. AMP boosts loading speed by as much as 85%, significantly cutting bounce rates.

Google is placing more and more emphasis on speed and mobile friendliness. AMP helps with that.

Google’s new framework is not yet considered a factor in page ranking, but its indirect impact cannot be understated. Some of the most influential ranking factors are content quality, content length, image optimization and multimedia. Google is also placing more and more emphasis on speed and mobile friendliness. An AMP-optimized page with quality content will increase its chances of making it to the top of research results. Thus, AMP improves ranking albeit incidentally.

Perhaps the most important benefit of AMP to businesses and publishers is increased advertising revenue. AMP “seeks simultaneously to create a great user experience, to give more autonomy to publishers to deliver that and to develop effective advertising for the mobile Web,” according to Tony Danker, chief strategy officer at Guardian News & Media. Google’s new framework restricts pop-ups widely used for online ads. However, there are ad technologies such as Google AdSense, Amazon A9 and AdTech that businesses and publishers can use in concert with AMP. Developers are also working on more AMP extensions to enable paywalls and subscriptions.

relay race

Photo courtesy of Pixabay via Pexels

AMP leads mobile publishing

In May 2015, Facebook launched Instant Articles. Apple’s Apple News was released a month later. Facebook allows users to open pages without leaving the Facebook environment. Publishers may import their content with the Instant Articles API, an RSS feed or use a third-party platform like WordPress. Apple News enables publishers to create articles directly in its News Publisher or import articles through the Apple News API.

In October 2015, Google’s AMP offered an easier alternative for publishers to distribute content. By adding HTML extensions, a Web page is optimized without needing to go through an app or third-party platform. Businesses are also spared the extra task of re-creating articles.

“If there’s one partner to get in bed with, it’s Google, because they’re always on the up-and-up,” Noah Szubski, chief product officer at the Daily Mail in London, said recently. He commends Google’s collaborative approach and easy access to leadership and engineers. “You get all the tracking, you get the ability to monetize, your AMP pages look the way you want them to look,” he says.

The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, BBC, Financial Times and the Daily Mail are a few of the publishers that tip their hat to AMP’s positive effect on their social media sharing, and they’re effectively use AMP to expand their readership.

blur

Photo courtesy of Unsplash via Pexels

The international cast of social media mobile businesses

The future of the Internet is in mobile. More than half of the world’s population consists of active mobile phone users. This rate has been increasing at an average rate of 16% annually. Social media is the new battlefield for information and online business. Instagram is more than a photo-sharing site for many Asian users. The Facebook-owned site is a top shopping venue for Asian consumers.

A recent poll suggests that about 30% of online sales in Southeast Asia occurred via social media sites in 2016. This dwarfs the 7% rate in the US. Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam are among Facebook Shop’s 10 largest markets in the world. These emerging markets are projected to help propel the global economy in the decades to come.

With AMP and Instant Articles, businesses are able to market products better and reach more consumers through a faster browsing experience.

smartphone

Photo courtesy of Clem Onojeghuo via Pexels

AMP & interactions in social networks

According to a Google study, 40% of users abandon pages that take more than 3 seconds to load

How does AMP affect mobile interactions? “A better, faster mobile web is better for everyone, including users, platforms like Pinterest, and publishers,” Jon Parise, product engineer at Pinterest, wrote on the Pinterest blog. According to a Google study, 40% of users abandon pages that take more than 3 seconds to load. This is alarming for publishers and online businesses.

Before AMP, Nuzzel’s founder Jonathan Abrams tried various ways to improve website speed from reducing server response time to optimizing images. “A page loads in less than half a second when Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages is enabled,” he said recently.

Evidently, AMP improves social media interactions. Publishers can concentrate on producing quality content, including multimedia that can make message delivery more effective. AMP fuels content marketing strategies.

iris

Photo courtesy of Lisa Fotios via Pexels

Improving social media interactions via AMP

AMP offers businesses and publishers an overview of relevant data via its analytics tools. By adding the amp-analytics element to the body of the web page, developers can enable page, event and social tracking. Page tracking monitors the number of visitors on a particular page while event tracking measures user interactions with content. The latter can be tracked independently from a page. To know when a user clicks on a piece of social media content, the social interactions analytics captures the number of times users “tweet,” “like,” “share” or perform other social network-related actions. Developers can also create their own configuration to monitor and extract data they need from their social media sites.

With this data, businesses and publishers are guided as they develop more refined mobile and social media marketing strategies. They’re able to define the type of content to produce, the multimedia to use and ways to improve social media interactions.

race

Photo courtesy of Unsplash via Pexels

AMP needs to accelerate further

Publisher Thrillist reported that 15% of its search traffic is generated from AMP while USA News Network attributes 12% of all mobile page views to Google’s open source framework. Now, businesses and publishers want Google to step up the game.

“I’d like to see them offer more advertising options, but the whole premise is speed,” John Potter, chief tech officer at Purch, said recently. Michael Kuntz of USA Today Network adds that they want AMP to be “more about video, branded content, richer opportunities.”

The world’s largest tech companies are seeing the trend in Internet browsing and online business. The future is in social media and mobile browsing. Facebook, Apple, and Google launched platforms in an effort to improve users’ browsing experience and accommodate companies’ business pursuits. Today, Google’s AMP is leading the mobile publishing race.

Are you using AMP on your business’s website?

Anna Rodriguez is a content writer, digital marketer and real estate manager. Connect with her on LinkedIn.

Source: Social Media

Intranets allow employees to access business information on a closed system. The system is accessed via a web browser, but it’s locked down so that non-employees can’t access it. Some intranets consist of ‘read only’ information, like company policies, while others include sharing features and team working tools. For the purposes of this guide, we’re […]

The post Create a Great Business Intranet With WordPress appeared first on Who Is Hosting This: The Blog.

Source: Web Hosting