LinkedIn vs. Facebook

LinkedIn vs. Facebook: Which is Better for Your Business?

It’s LinkedIn vs. Facebook … which social media platform is better for your business? The answer may surprise you.

While the two platforms look alike (and many on LinkedIn complain Facebook-type posts are “taking over”), they each have distinctive drawbacks and benefits.

Let’s explore them, shall we?

B2B vs. B2C

Whether you’re business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) may impact which platform you choose. LinkedIn is set up for B2B engagement while Facebook is set up for B2C. There are, however, circumstances where the scenarios flip. The key is understanding why your audience is on either platform.

Let’s say, for example, you are targeting individuals working with a network marketing company. Even though that is a B2B initiative, Facebook would be an ideal spot to find your target since many network marketers use Facebook as away to drive business.

If you are a B2C business but your target is specific to a professional segment, however, LinkedIn may work for you. A product for executives or service for business travelers are two examples.

Advertising

If you’re looking to leverage paid advertising for your product or service, it’s important to know the differences between Facebook and LinkedIn.

Facebook has a more robust platform and is far cheaper than LinkedIn. You can re-target using Facebook ads by implementing a pixel on your website and creating custom audiences of those who clicked through to earlier ads.

You can also upload your email list to Facebook, target those individuals who already like your page (and their friends), or those who have engaged with your posts.

Where LinkedIn edges out Facebook is in the B2B space. If you’re pushing an ad to all C-level employees or you’re selling a big ticket business item, LinkedIn may be a better option.

The thing to know with LinkedIn advertising is that it’s much more expensive ($3-5 per click) than Facebook, so you want to have a specific objective before you give it a try.

The News Feed

LinkedIn is a much better platform for organic engagement since it doesn’t carry the dreaded Facebook algorithm. Being seen on LinkedIn is far easier (at least for now) with organic posts, though the platform did make more difficult to gain traction with native posts.

If you’re just starting on Facebook, you can expect to leverage advertising for initial likes on your page unless you have a large, relevant network to leverage. One rule applies for both platforms: create content users engage with (like, share, comment) and it will be seen.

Search

One significant benefit for businesses on LinkedIn over Facebook is the search function. This comes down to the way people use LinkedIn compared to Facebook and the function itself.

LinkedIn’s search function is enough of a reason to have an optimized profile for yourself and your team members, especially if you are a B2B. Let’s say I’m looking for a business coach. Where am I likely to search? LinkedIn would be my No. 1 spot, without question.

Not only do I find a variety of coaches I can choose from, I can see if I have any common connections to attain a reference or get an introduction.

Local vs. Online

Local businesses must be on Facebook without question, whether you’re a B2B or B2C.

Since you’re local, you can leverage your personal network to extend the reach of your business page. This shouldn’t be done all the time (you don’t want to drive your personal network crazy), but in calculated spots (Think a local coffee shop asking friends to share photos on their personal profiles).

Facebook advertising is also ideal for local businesses. Just about everyone enters where they live into their personal profile, making it a cakewalk to target potential customers at a low cost.

There is still a benefit to being on LinkedIn as a local business, but being on Facebook is a must.

Final Thoughts

Deciding where to focus your online marketing attention can be a tough decision: do you go with what’s most popular or what you know best?

The answer is neither: you go with the best fit for your business. Facebook or LinkedIn will be a fit for your business … it’s just a matter of finding out if it’s one, the other, or both.

Hopefully this helped you narrow things down. If you’re looking for further customized help, you can reach out for a one-hour strategy session or a LinkedIn Profile Optimization!

genuine and trustworthy

Dollars Flow to the Genuine and Trustworthy

Passion is a way of life and business for me. One thing I’m very passionate about is being genuine and trustworthy as an entrepreneur.

Businesses run by honest, passionate people are the ones others want to work for and with. I only work with clients who are genuine and trustworthy and who want to make a difference in the lives of their clients or customers.

Beyond operating that way within a business, though, is marketing oneself the same way in order to move a business forward. This isn’t always the sexiest approach, because it can take time to plant roots as an unknown in a digital space, but it will ultimately bring the best return.

Once individuals know, like, and trust you, they will give you their business — it’s that simple. It’s important, however, to follow specific guidelines:

1. Make Sure You’re Marketing to the Right People

While it’s fantastic to generate engagement in the digital space, it’s meaningless if those you’re engaging with have zero desire to buy from you. Don’t fall into the trap of reaching out to an audience that ingests your content, but doesn’t need your services.

Here’s an example:

Let’s say you build websites and you’re trying to drum up business through social media. You publish tips and tricks as a way to generate engagement and, hopefully, business. The only problem is that your tips and tricks are attracting a do-it-yourself audience that loves your content, but doesn’t need your services.

If, on the other hand, you publish “10 questions to ask of your potential website developer,” you may attract a crowd looking for a website developer instead of looking to develop it themselves. And, going back to our original point, you will show that you are caring and trustworthy by helping this audience find the right fit.

2. Make Sure You’re GENERATING Enough Exposure

Just because you build it, doesn’t mean they will come. Producing fantastic content is only the first step. Next, you need to get that content in front of the right people by working with a social media specialist to dig into the nuances of each platform to get the most out of them.

Here are a few of my articles that may help:

Beyond that is a need for general SEO, or search engine optimization. Writing quality content is one thing; you also need to structure that content within your website so search engines read it and pull out relevant keywords.

One of my more popular posts is, “Stop Thinking SEO is Something You Should Save for a Rainy Day.” Basic SEO is simple and can make all the difference between potential clients finding you and finding someone else instead.

3. Make Sure You’re Saying Enough

As I mentioned before, I only work with awesome, genuine, and trustworthy clients. One of the things I do for them is connect the dots between who they are and what they’re broadcasting to the world.

Too often, amazing, talented entrepreneurs are selling themselves short by not conveying the incredible qualities they possess. These qualities are often referred to as “soft skills” and aren’t as outwardly valued in our culture as hard skills.

For consultants especially, these soft skills are everything. Even if your “it factor” has nothing to do with soft skills, the piece that will push people over the edge to want to hire you is often your engaging personality, ability to problem-solve, or genuine desire to want to help.

Make sure what makes you unique is being broadcast along with your deliverables.

Final Thoughts

Digital noise bombards potential clients and customers with endless messages and pitches. You want to be the person they turn to with their questions and — more importantly — their jobs.

Do that by conveying your genuine willingness to help and take care of their businesses, and you will be well on your way.

Facebook pixel

What is the Facebook Pixel and Why Do You Need It?

I’ve had a number of entertaining conversations around the “Facebook pixel.” For those of us in digital marketing, it is an exciting snippet of code that unlocks a marketer’s dream of demographics, re-targeting, and warm leads.

For those of you who are not in digital marketing, conversation around the Facebook Pixel probably sounds like the teacher in Charlie Brown Christmas.

I’m going to do my best to explain the benefits of the Facebook pixel without getting too nerdy. I’ll probably have to get a little nerdy, though … I love this stuff!

1. Implementation

First thing’s first: how do you get this “Facebook pixel?”

It’s a short string of code that you paste into the header of your website. If you aren’t sure how to do that, whoever manages your website will understand.

You can also visit the Facebook Pixel help guide.

2. Facebook Pixel Function

What the pixel does is track everyone who visits your website so you can market to those people on Facebook. Think of it as going to a water park and getting your hand stamped. Once you’ve been to the water park, you’re branded. That’s what it’s like to visit a website that has the Facebook pixel implemented.

The beauty of this is that it allows you to specifically target those people with your Facebook ads. As a consultant, your highest likelihood of getting clients is by pitching people who already know you. Cold traffic probably isn’t going to convert.

If you are re-targeting people you know have been exposed to you already, however, you have a much greater chance at converting.

3. Facebook Pixel in Action

Okay, so you’ve got the pixel implemented and it’s tracking.

Now what?

Let’s walk through a one simple scenario of moving users from cold traffic to potential leads. We will assume you are starting from scratch with no audience to speak of.

Note: this is meant to be a conceptual walk through the process. I completely understand that you won’t understand the nuances of using the Facebook ads system!

Building An Audience Using Initial Tracking

  • Create a brand new audience comprised of the demographics and attributes you are targeting.
  • Create an ad using an article from your website. Don’t worry about including a call to action. At this point, you simply want people interested in your content to click through.
  • As the ad runs, those who click the link to your website will be tracked using the pixel.

Re-targeting with Your New Audience

  • Create a new audience using the traffic that clicked on your initial ad.
  • Now that you know you are marketing to people who have already been introduced to your brand, you should include a call to action such as collecting email addresses.
  • At that point, you can move over to email marketing with a larger ask.

Leveraging Existing Web Traffic

If you already have regular traffic on your website, you can use that to your advantage, too. The Facebook pixel will track users on your website even if they don’t come specifically from Facebook.

One option is to create an audience of users who have visited your website in the last 30 days. You could also target users who have been to a specific offer page with a harder sell because you know they must be interested in what you’re offering.

If you don’t want to send ads to those who have already claimed your offer, you can target people who have been to your offer page while excluding those who have reached your “Thank You” page.

Final Thoughts

There are so many possibilities when it comes to Facebook ads! Even if you aren’t ready to start, though, you should absolutely implement that pixel so you can start tracking. That way, when you’re ready to go full steam ahead, the data will be there waiting for you!

Looking to dig deeper into Facebook ads or social media strategy? Book a 60-minute strategy session!

warm leads

How to Warm Up Your Audience Before Pitching Your Services

I am a huge proponent of personalizing your message for your target audience, but this is even more important for consultants.

Consultants sell advice. It’s rare someone will pay a consultant for advice when they don’t know them from Adam. That’s why it’s critical to transition cold traffic — people who don’t know you — to warm leads before attempting to sell.

There are a number of ways to convert cold traffic into warm leads as a consultant.

Here is a three-step guide:

Step 1: Create Content

Since consultants are selling advice, content is critical because it showcases knowledge. Get into the heads of your target audience and come up with problems they need to solve.

It’s important to think basic for a number of reasons.

First, you will appeal to a broader audience when you start slow. As an expert in your field, it’s easy to take for granted what your audience doesn’t know.

Second, providing something simple allows your audience to test your advice and see tangible results. If what you’re suggesting is too complex, they will get lost in it and not see what your advice can do for them.

Noteworthy Advice

  • You may worry about giving away too much because then your audience won’t need to pay you. The opposite is true! When you give away your best stuff, people will flock to you for customized services.
  • Your content medium is just as important as your content. Again, get into the heads of those within your target audience and figure out how they best ingest content. It could be a blog, video, infographic, or podcast.

Step 2: Promote and Track

While it’s useful to have people reading, watching, or listening to your content because they’re getting to know you, it’s critical to track them.

I prefer a method recently mentioned in an interview between Jocelyn Sams of Flipped Lifestyle and Natalie Eckdahl of the BizChix Podcast: install a Facebook pixel on your website so you can target ads toward those who engage your content.

This method works twofold: first, it helps you grow your business Facebook page, which is difficult to do without paid advertising. Second, it leverages the most robust advertising medium available to reach your target audience.

You can promote your content on any medium — Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube — as long as traffic is coming to your website.

Step 3: Retarget to Warm LEADS

Your next step is to create a custom audience within Facebook.

  • Visit your audiences page within Facebook Business Manager.
  • Go to Create Audience — Custom Audience — Website Traffic.
  • From there, you can target anyone who has visited your website within a certain number of days.

This custom audience is valuable because we know they have been exposed to you and what you provide. Now you can target this audience with a bigger ask. Maybe you provide a resource and ask people to give their email address in exchange or go right to promoting your paid service.

It takes 6-8 touchpoints to generate a viable sales lead, depending on who you ask, so you may not get sales right away when you retarget to this audience.

The key is to understand exactly how you want people to get from knowing nothing about you to wanting to buy from you. This process — taking the audience from cold to warm — is only the beginning.

Final Thoughts

The number of steps it will take for cold traffic to buy from you depends on your content, audience, and service. It may be easier for a marketing consultant to convert than a fitness consultant, for example, since the latter is more personal.

The key is be organized, keep track of analytics, and refine until you get it right.

influencer marketing

How to Leverage Influencer Marketing to Grow Your Brand

Any online promotional strategy should include an influencer marketing piece.

What is influencer marketing?

Influencer marketing is a type of marketing that focuses on using key leaders to drive your brand’s message to the larger market. Rather than marketing directly to a large group of consumers, you instead inspire / hire / pay influencers to get out the word for you. – Tap Influencer

I personally recommend that you focus on the organic side of this strategy. As a successful business owner, you have an audience that can provide something to the influencer, so paying or hiring someone isn’t necessary. The key is finding a mutual benefit between the two of you.

A Case Study Metaphor: Fitness Guru

Let’s say you are a fitness guru, building your business around online consultations. You have found success through referrals and have modest followings on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You’d like to expand your online reach as a way to automate your lead generation process.

You’ve believe influencer marketing can help you achieve this goal. Where do you start? There are a number of parameters to keep in mind when determining who you will reach out to, when, and how.

Who

Who will you reach out to? There are a few rules of thumb when considering the influencers you’re going to engage with as part of your influencer marketing strategy.

  1. Choose a non-competitor. Yes, your competitors will be the most relevant to your brand, but you don’t want to open that can of worms. Not only may you be perceived as trying to steal audience members from your competitors, you’re shifting the attention of your audience to someone else who offers your services.
  2. Choose a mid-level influencer. Don’t reach so high that your effort gets lost in a sea of tags and shoutouts. “Internet famous” people are inundated with messages and yours will easily get lost. There are exceptions to this, though, that we will get into another time.
  3. Choose a related industry professional. It’s important that the person you choose can benefit from your audience and vice versa. While there are situations in which you will simply post something and pray an influencer throws you a bone, it’s ideal to choose someone who will appreciate the additional traffic you are providing him or her.

When

Influencer marketing can happen anytime, but basing it around a particular article or event will generate the best results.

When someone in your field publishes an article, engages in an interview, or holds an event, he or she is looking to expand business reach. By giving a shoutout to that person in light of that content or event, you are becoming a part of their promotional strategy.

They will appreciate you recognizing their hard work and endorsing it as something others would benefit from.

How

How do you implement an influencer marketing strategy? You can write a blog on your website that mentions and links to the influencer, offer a shoutout on social media, or create a video that mentions the person or business.

The key is promoting what you do on a social media platform your influencer is a part of. Here are the best platforms for influencer marketing, ranked best to least best:

  1. Twitter. I LOVE Twitter for influencer marketing. You don’t have to get through any red tape to get to the person or brand you are engaging with and the benefit can be instant. If the brand you are engaging with retweets what you post, you’ve already expanded your reach. If you are engaging around a particular event, make sure you use that event’s hashtag.
  2. LinkedIn. Since LinkedIn is a B2B platform, you are going to get a lot of bang for your buck when you tag someone else within the news feed. Mention someone within an original blog you write and then post it along with a tag. You can also share content from an influencer on your timeline and give it a little endorsement while tagging the person or brand. This will expand your reach, but it will also nudge someone you are trying to woo into becoming a client or customer.
  3. Instagram. You can repost someone’s photo on Instagram, comment, or share. If you have a big, relevant following, reposting with their handle will go a long way. If you don’t know how to repost within Instagram, check out repostapp.
  4. Facebook. The best way to gain traction on Facebook is to share someone else’s post and tag their page when you do. This most taps into the “good karma” category. It’s a good strategy if you’re looking to gain this person or brand as a lead for your business because you’re starting out the relationship by giving them something for nothing.

Finishing Our Case Study

Now that we’ve gone through all of that, let’s finish our case study. Our fitness guru is looking to expand reach to automate lead generation. How might she tap into influencer marketing to do that?

  • Find complementary services. Fitness goes hand-in-hand with diet and nutrition. While our guru may offer services around diet plans, she can share recipes from healthy eating brands,  articles written about clean eating, or other fitness gurus that work in a different niche. For example, if our fitness guru specializes in yoga, she could share the work of a weightlifter. For everything she shares, she would tag the handle of the brand.
  • Tap into challenges. Twitter and Instagram are great platforms to find people engaging in a particular activity because of the use of hashtags. Research the top hashtags for training for a 5K or marathon and comment on the posts of those people. During the race, use the event hashtag to offer encouragement to those participating and give a shoutout to the face facilitator.
  • Engage the stars. Once a strong enough following is built (at least 1,000 followers on each platform), our fitness guru can work to engage in conversation with some of the stars in her industry. Comment on their articles, compliment their business, and express admiration!
  • Engage the media. A great influencer marketing strategy on Twitter is to engage media that covers your industry. Our guru can retweet articles and reply to tweets to compliment content they’ve created (she’ll want to reference the content so they know she actually read it). Once she’s built a rapport with those media members, she can start pitching them for her own stories.

Final Thoughts

Well, there you have it, and there is plenty more where that came from! While these are great tips that apply to any business, digging into the customization of each brand and each target will open up even more possibilities.

How have you tapped into influencer marketing? What has it done for your business?

Facebook

Let’s Take the Mystery out of Facebook So It Can Help Your Business

There are countless ways Facebook can help your business, but even the most intelligent entrepreneurs struggle to crack its code.

While it’s simple to use, it can feel like you’re shouting to no one, pushing out post after post to little fanfare. You may even find yourself questioning your own skills.

This can’t be that difficult … can it?

The answer is yes and no. Facebook is a powerful tool you can leverage for your business, but it can easily become a nuisance if you don’t understand how it works.

Here’s the key: give Facebook what it wants, and you’ll see a return.

1. Facebook Wants Your Money

It’s harsh, but it’s true.

Facebook is a robust advertising asset because it collects everything. Do you need to promote your content to women who recently had a baby? Someone who just changed jobs? A person afflicted with Lyme disease?

You can target all of that within the ad manager and that’s the route the platform wants you to take. Organic content — or content left to perform without paying to promote it — can work, but it has become increasingly difficult for businesses just starting out.

Facebook has made it tough for businesses to build an engaged audience without paid advertising, so it should be expected when you’re earning your first 1,000 followers.

2. Facebook Wants You to Engage its Users

Speaking of an engaged audience, that’s what Facebook wants you to have. The user experience is extremely important to the brand, which is why shares, comments, and likes will increase exposure of your content to your followers.

Have you ever logged onto the platform and seen a post with “Jane and Joe recently liked this post …” at the top? That’s a post receiving a lot of likes, comments, and shares, so Facebook believes you’ll want to see it, too.

It’s how it weights published content: when a post gets a lot of attention right away, it jumps to the top of the news feed. Create content your followers want to engage with and you’ll generate more exposure for your brand.

3. Facebook Wants You to Record Videos

That’s right, Facebook wants to be the No. 1 source for online video, and it’s well on its way. In fact, it predicts that the news feed will contain only video within the next five years.

If Facebook wants it’s platform to be video-focused, it means it’s going to help things along by favoring video posts. This past March, Facebook changed it’s algorithm to give preference to live video vs. on demand. It’s why you will get a notification if a page you follow is going live.

Here’s what this means for you: get on the video train, or it’s going to leave without you. Whether you’re talking to your audience, conducting a Q&A, or posting live from an event you’re attending, you will increase your traction by dabbling in video.

Additional tips

  • If you have a large following on YouTube, you may be posting YouTube links to your Facebook page. What you may not know is that YouTube links won’t do well within the news feed because Facebook wants you to natively upload them to their platform.
  • Are you open to putting a bit of money into Facebook ads? Make sure you have a clear focus when you do. Boosting random posts for additional clicks may be fun, but it’s wasting money if you don’t have a specific objective.
  • When you’re earning those first 1,000 followers, cross-promote your page as much as possible. Since Facebook allows you to embed its content, you can upload a video and then include it in a blog post. It’s a win-win: you give Facebook what it wants (video) and you promote your page to your blog audience!

I could dig so much deeper into each of these areas! Do you find these tips are too simple or too complex? Let me know which of these is most helpful to you by commenting below!