A Guide to Social Media Marketing for Beginner Designers
As the importance of social media marketing continuously increases, promoting yourself or your business in the online environment is becoming vital. But how do you do that as a beginner? Where do you start and what do you do? Let’s take a look at the major players in social media and their website and see how we can get you set up. We will go over the basics of what you need to know and keep in mind on your journey on each of these platforms ways to make your accommodation more pleasant. Once you are a master at social media marketing, you are going to want to master photoshop. Here is a collection of tutorials and ideas for beginners learning photoshop.
Twitter is a micro-blogging platform where users share their thoughts, news and updates in the form of 140 characters or less. It can be used for various things. From keeping your friends up to date with your latest adventures, promotion your personal brand, your business to customer service, Twitter can be the tool for you if you learn how to use it efficiently.
How to get started
Pick your Twitter ID. When doing this, remember @yourname is part of your personal brand. Try to avoid underscores and keep it plain, simple and suggestive. If it’s available, you may consider picking your actual name.
Who to follow
Now that you are here, you want to interact with people and don’t know how to start. For starters, you can follow people that you know. Keep in mind though that it’s perfectly normal on Twitter to “follow” people you’ve never met. It’s what you’re here to do. Look for people with common interests or professions. Once you have found a few, Twitter makes it easier for you and actually starts suggesting people you might want to follow. Don’t get overwhelmed and don’t get lazy!
Link your Twitter account to your other internet outlets. Post your information on Facebook, on your blog or on LinkedIn. This is a great way to advertise your newly created tool.
Make sure you create a bio and profile that attracts the type of followers you are aiming for. Depending on the purpose you plan on using your Twitter account, the options are quite varied so you’ll have to be careful that your content and bio appeal to the right audience.
In order to get followers you need to start tweeting. You can use apps to tweet your blog or Facebook posts or you can separately tweet each entry using the Twitter platform. Post pictures, ask questions, encourage interaction by sending @messages to users (the message will be posted on their page, for everyone who’s visiting them to see).
Founded by Mark Zuckerberg and his college roommates and a few fellow Hardvard University students, Facebook started off as Facemash, a site meant to serve as a “hot or not” game for the university’s students. Years later and after an unexpected and almost unbelievable evolution, Facebook is the world’s leading social network. It makes it easy to connect and share with the people in your life, whether it’s family, friends or customer and business partners.
Facebook is different than Twitter. It requires much more attention, lengthier posts and it’s harder to get attention and drive traffic.
If you are building a Facebook page to promote your personal brand, your business or keep in touch with your customers, carefully picked content is vital. Your posts should not only be easy to read, scannable, but they should be interesting, their content should be appropriate to the targeted audience. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, encouraging people to comment.
Promote your Facebook page or Twitter page by adding it to your email signature line, newsletters or updates sent to your site or blog followers.
Pinterest is an online pinboard, a visual take on social bookmarking. Content shared here is driven entirely by visual. No image, no go. You can share images you find online or just upload them directly. A “Pin It” button will allow you to share directly from a webpage.
Pinterest can be a great way of promoting yourself or your business by increasing traffic to your site. Clicking an image (a pin) leads the user to the source of the image, usually an external site. So having your content repinned can easily get people to your site by clicking on the nicely looking image.
In order to get pinned, make sure you have quality content. High resolution, original and interesting pictures are required. Encourage sharing and pinning by not adding a watermark to your images. Give your boards unique names. And last but not least, write detailed descriptions for your images if you want them to be noticed. Usage of keywords is, as usual, very important when trying to have more users drawn to your content.
Watch for trends. Clicking on the “Popular” link on your Pinterest home page will allow you to research for pins and pinners that are growing in popularity and give you a good idea of trends to integrate into your content strategy.
LinkedIn is a social network geared towards business. It’s very popular with those seeking to build their network of contacts and reach out to employers. It’s a huge database of professionals.
This is THE place to find and be found. I’m sure everyone is used to looking up old colleagues and friends on Facebook in order to reconnect with them. With detailed search functionality, LinkedIn is a great alternative to finding people and allowing them to find you. Standardized information used in the creation of profiles such as “Education”, “Company” or “Profile headline” greatly increase your chances of finding the person you are looking for and filtering out those who are irrelevant to your search.
LinkedIn is a great career management tool.
“Social Networking is a Career Insurance that you can never have enough of”– Neal Schaffer
Regardless of whether you are happily employed or currently out scouting for a job, building your social network on LinkedIn is always a good idea. You can find potential companies and recruiters and even be found by them.
There are a few things you can do to faster and better develop your LI network. First thing is first, your profile says a lot about you. Make sure you have a professional-looking photograph. Put a lot of thought into choosing the content for your profile and keep in mind that your LI profile can serve as an online business card. Share relevant information that allows people to reach your profile easier when searching the very large database.
After building your basic contacts by LI’s “People you may know” suggestions, proceed to joining groups and participating in discussions to broaden your social horizon and get in touch with new professionals in the field while possibly showcasing your expertise.
Connect your LinkedIn and Twitter accounts. This way you can see whether those connected to you on LinkedIn also use Twitter and you can follow them without having to log onto Twitter. This link between LI and Twitter fosters limitless marketing potential by adding more value to your LinkedIn connections.
One of the unique features that LinkedIn has to offer is Recommendations section. This is a good way of attracting new business by having your colleagues and previous/current clients share your expertise.
LinkedIn allows you to make new connections, expand the reach of your content and gain influence for yourself or your business. The best way of getting recommendations is by exchanging them with your peers. Recommend them and they will return the favor.
This particular social media website is not for everyone. You can fall in love with it on first sight, or end up permanently scarred and never want to visit again.
To a first time visitor, Reddit looks like a mess. Posts seem random, the text links, comment threads make no sense and appear to have no structure.
What distinguishes Reddit from other social media sites is that the content is curated by the community, through a system that consists of “upvoting” and “downvoting”. For a post to be on the front page to be seen by thousands of people, it will need to be not only relevant, but very interesting; it should be able to gather “upvotes” to win the continuous competition that’s going on between posts and the battle for high ranking.
For a Facebook or Twitter user, Reddit will feel like visiting a foreign country where people don’t speak the same language or even as having landed on a different planet. Don’t be intimidated.
One thing to keep in mind when on Reddit is that comments are the key to deciphering any posted content. They are also the most entertaining part of the site. The “upvoted” (top) comments when accessing a post will always be those of highest relevance and that arouse a high level of interest from a lot of users.
Explore subreddits, which are basically smaller niche communities within Reddit. Once you decide that Reddit is worth trying out, start roaming and explore various subreddits to find those that interest you and subscribe to them.
Learn the lingo. Acronyms are very popular on Reddit. Once you become familiar with them, your time spent on the site will become more and more pleasant as you will start feeling like less of an outsider. A few that are worth mentioning would be OP (original poster), TL;DR (Too long; didn’t read) which is usually used to sum up a very long post for those who don’t want to read the whole thing, and FTFY (Fixed that for you), an acronym that’s used when someone makes a change to another user’s post or image, often with a humorous result. There are many, many more but I’ll let you discover them and figure them out once you get there.
When promoting content on Reddit, try to keep in mind that most redditers hate being marketed to. They know companies have people crawlingthe site and posting content they’d be likely to upvote and share. If you are going to use reddit as a tool, make sure you are well informed and understand the category you are posting in, the “nettiquete” of the category and be ready to post valuable content because, as the saying goes, on Reddit “Content is king”.
This is the last website I will be mentioning today and it’s actually a tool that allows you to measure your online social influence. It’s a very useful service that allows you to gain quick access to data and information about your online presence and performance.
Kloud gives you a score between 1 and 100. The average score is around 20. Watching your Klout score and its variation can sometimes be a very good indicator of whether what you are doing online is helping you increase your popularity/influence or not. For anyone who is struggling in building or keeping a good online social presence, Klout is a must-have tool.
What has your experience been so far in this area? Do you have any tips for fellow designers trying to market their business?