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Vincent Dignan at his “Growth Hack Your Sales” workshop in San Francisco (photo by JD Lasica).

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

JD LasicaLast month I attended one of the most eye-opening startup marketing/growth hacking talks I’ve seen in years, so I wanted to share some highlights for you in a short multi-part series. (I used to do this a lot more often before launching a startup!)

The event, called “Growth Hack Your Sales & Personal Branding!” and held at Galvanize in San Francisco’s SoMa, drew about 70 attendees. It was part of a multi-pronged series of presentations put on by digital marketing wunderkind Vincent Dignan, who proved his social chops by raising $95,516 on Indiegogo for the series of digital guides, “secret sauce” courses and client consultations he provides.

Vincent, who’s young enough to pass for a teenager (and may well be for all I know), is constantly online and his writings have garnered more than 150 million page views and 50 million visitors. The lad is British but has a serious case of Silicon Valley fever, so hopes to move to the U.S. next year. (He’s also available to speak at conferences, and I highly recommend him.)

This event promised “a step-by-step guide of growth hacking methods & tactics for getting users, traffic and revenue,” and who could resist that?

Vincent’s 148-slide presentation flew by too fast for the attendees to dive in too deeply, but he seemed to have his finger on the pulse of millennials and the next generation of post-mass media consumers. Here are some nuggets I thought you’d like especially valuable.

10 rules of personal branding

Vincent conveyed these 10 rules of “personal branding,” which is less about personal branding and more about building a brand for your startup, small business or client’s company:

  1. No one cares about you.
  2. People only care about what you give to them or do for them.
  3. Be everywhere but choose text, video, photos (or all three)
  4. Use influencers but don’t rely on them
  5. Building your brand is 10% content, 90% distribution
  6. 1 in 5 good posts is all you need for people to remember
  7. Copy until you develop your own style
  8. Never say no to public appearances
  9. Scale worldwide as soon as possible
  10. Be vulnerable: say what people are really feeling.

Vincent Dignan in San Francisco
Vincent at an earlier workshop in San Francisco.

The main takeaways here (and I’m extrapolating from what I remember of Vincent’s points) are that it’s easy to mistake personal storytelling and transparency for self-absorption. Don’t focus on the job you’re doing or how much you’re producing. Focus on your users or customers and how you’re going to improve their lives/save them time/help them meet their goals.

We live in a multimedia, multi-format, multi-screen world, so don’t just focus on writing a text-based blog. The next generation of users/customers (don’t call them consumers) are especially absorbed by rich visuals. Engage with people in their own (visual) language.

Influencers can help you spread your message. But a lot of campaigns that rely on social media influencers come up short because the A-listers don’t have sufficient and ongoing buy-in to your product, service or cause.

Don’t rely on the assumption, “If you create great content, they will come.” They may not. You have to work, work, work to get the word out across multiple distribution channels. Build your email list. Build a devoted following and show thought leadership on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Not every post you create has to be a home run. But don’t create one middling, muddled post after another on the theory that quantity is more important than quality. It’s not.

In a hat tip to Andy Warhol (to say nothing of Picasso and Steve Jobs), Vincent advised us to copy and steal at first. Your own voice and style will come in time.

You’re your brand’s best ambassador, so take advantage of opportunities to appear before relevant audiences. Be proactive and approach event and conference organizers six months or more before their next event in your sector.

I wouldn’t recommend this to every startup or business, especially if you haven’t achieved product-market fit yet, but Vincent’s advice is to try to scale globally sooner rather than later by using tools such as Twitter and Eventbrite.

And finally, I’ve been talking about the power of “being vulnerable” in my own public appearances for nearly a decade. Authenticity is the coin of the realm. Remove the mask, discard the filters, share what’s true and genuine.

Vincent Dignan in NYC
Vincent at a growth hacking/personal branding workshop in New York.

More growth hacking tips

You might also like Vincent’s presentation “How to Attract Humans” at Startup Britain in 2015.

And if you’re in the SF Bay Area, you should check out the outstanding talks available at Galvanize SF. I’ll be attending “How to Go from 0 to 4 Million Users in 1 Year” next Tuesday.

And Vincent will be speaking the same night at London Startup Marketing on “Let’s solve your startup marketing problems…50 Key Growth Hacks To Scale Your Business.”JD Lasica, founder of Socialmedia.biz, is now co-founder of the cruise discovery engine Cruiseable. See his About page, contact JD or follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.

Source: Social Media


Post by Megan Totka

MeganTotkaSmall businesses can support their online marketing activities through a presence on Facebook, such as a Facebook page. In fact, a survey by Hubspot found that 84 percent of respondents expect small businesses to have a presence on Facebook. If you don’t have a page for your small business yet, it’s past time. Don’t underestimate the importance of a Facebook page and growing your community — you can use Facebook to promote your business on a daily basis.

Growing your business does have its challenges, especially as more and more businesses are creating pages and competing for likes. There are many ways businesses fail on social media. Instead of letting that happen, take a look at these 7 ways to generate a Facebook following and convert likes into more business.

Add photos and videos

Facebook has an easy-to-use photo and video upload function – so take advantage of it. Show off your small business, the products you sell and the services you offer. Use it to connect with your fans, too, through videos of yourself and your team and answer common questions with video how-tos.

Ask a question

Use the status updates function to get your fans talking by asking a question. Consider true/false questions or ask for advice so people have the opportunity to chance and help or give their opinion.

Keep in relevant

It’s great to focus on your small business, yet it’s smart to inject some personality to your page by posting and sharing off-topic from time to time. Focus mostly on what is happening within your business and aim to share primarily relevant content for your audience.

Promote your small business Facebook page

Include your Facebook page URL on your website, blog, business cards and even your email signature. Add it to marketing materials you distribute, too. You need to tell people about your page and encourage them to visit it if you want to grow your following.

Be consistent

Have a consistent presence on Facebook; don’t disappear for weeks. This doesn’t mean you have to be logged on and engaging your followers 24/7, it just means your fans need to know that you are there. Take the time to answer questions and participate in conversations with your community. Set a schedule for posting and don’t sway away from it.

Blog about your Facebook page

Chances are you have a small business blog. Make sure you mention your Facebook page in a blog post. Explain the benefits of liking your page and joining your community. Whether you are promoting your business at a local level or targeting people around the country, consider offering incentives for people who like your page. Good ideas are a one-time coupon or special deal unique for your followers only.

Get involved

It’s smart to like other Facebook pages that are related to your industry. Take the time to join in discussions on those pages. It will get people who are interested in your industry to notice your business and likely head to your page and like it, too.

You may have a solid marketing strategy, but it’s really important to make sure you’re an effective Facebook marketer. Facebook is home to millions of active small-business pages, so it’s smart to take some steps to ensure your page doesn’t get lost in the shuffle.

How do you get your small business Facebook page noticed?

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

Small business owners often don’t know where to start when it comes to local link-building for SEO, so columnist Pratik Dholakiya shares his tips and suggestions.

The post 6 strategies to build links for your small business website in 2016 appeared first on Search Engine Land.

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

Source: SEO

Following in the footsteps of MapQuest last year, Yahoo Small Business is outsourcing local listings management to Yext. Late last week Yahoo notified customers of the impending change in email: Yahoo is thrilled to announce that we have partnered with Yext to manage your Local Basic Listing moving…

Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

Source: SEO