Tag Archives: Social Media Strategy

Maximizing LinkedIn for You & Your Business

“Maximizing LinkedIn for You and Your Business”:  This 2 hr seminar on April 10th is for users ready to leverage the power of LinkedIn Marketing with tools and applications to help you reach your personal and business objectives.  We will cover all of the latest profile changes introduced for 2013 and how they enhance your online brand. Learn how to optimize your profile for search engines so that you can appear in top search results. Bonus 30 minute session on marketing with LinkedIn Pages for your company follows.  4/10 from 2:00-4:00/4:30 at the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce.  For more info and to register click HERE.

C3 gifts one Free LinkedIn Profile Review each month. February winner:  Chrissann Ruehle
C3 gifts one Free LinkedIn Profile Review each month. February winner: Chrissann Ruehle

Enter the monthly drawing  for a LinkedIn Profile Make-over and 30 minute phone consult HERE.

Visit our website for more information on strategic social media marketing services provided by C3:  HERE

Social Media Marketing Seminars Coming to the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce

C3 Social Media Marketing Seminars in Cincinnati
C3 Social Media Marketing Seminars in Cincinnati

C3. Creating Connections Consulting, in partnership with the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce, is bringing two key social media for business seminars to the Anderson Center in March and April of 2013.

Join C3 and the AACC on Wednesday, March 13th for “Maximizing Social Media Marketing for your Business: An Introduction to Digital” from 2:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. at the Anderson Center in Anderson Township (7850 Five Mile Road, Cincinnati, OH  45230).

 “Maximizing LinkedIn” will be held at the same location on Wednesday, April 10th from 2:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m. There will be a FREE 30 minute bonus seminar on Marketing with LinkedIn Company Pages from 4:00-4:30 p.m.

Join social media strategist and former P&G marketer, Michelle Beckham-Corbin as she takes the class from possibilities to execution steps.  Register early as space is limited. We will be in the large conference room of the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce located in the Anderson Center on Five Mile Road.

Register for the Social Media Marketing Seminar here: 

Register for the LinkedIn Seminar here:

 Or Call C3 at 513-445-2180 for more information.

www.CreatingConnectionsConsulting.com

Here’s what others are saying about Michelle’s seminars:

“Michelle is a high-energy person who is exudes a passion for business and personal development. Her enthusiasm for utilizing social media as a tool for strategic marketing is contagiously energizing.

Having graduated with an undergraduate and MBA degree from Xavier, Michelle is continually seeking opportunities to give back to the university. Recently she demonstrated her expertise in strategic marketing and social media by presenting her methodology to university students, alumni, faculty, and business partners during the 2nd Annual “Career Campaign” offered by the Professional Development Center in the Williams College of Business. As a strong and engaging presenter Michelle quickly connected with attendees as she walked them through a step by step plan for developing their on-line presence. Michelle’s outreach to attendees continues beyond the classroom when she offers her contact information and urges others to get LinkedIn with her.”

~Cheryl Wilson, Career Development Coordinator, Williams College of  Business- Xavier University.

Free Social Media Marketing Services in Cincinnati

C3 Gives Back Program:

Free Social Media Marketing Services via C3. Creating Connections Consulting, LLC
Pro bono Social Media Services

C3.Creating Connections Consulting to offer pro bono social media marketing and speaking services for non-profits and community organizations in the Cincinnati region in 2013 via the C3 Gives Back Program. Founder Michelle Beckham is a former P&G customer business development and marketing manager who has worked in the digital space since 2005.

One resource that most non-profits and community organizations need, but might not have the budget for is strategic social media marketing consulting or speaker services.  C3 helps businesses and organizations create a strategic marketing plan that integrates the most effective social/digital tools for their call to action and target market and teaches them how to create content and engagement strategies for each platform to build customer relationships and business.

Michelle Beckham speaks all over the region on social media marketing topics, reputation management, online branding and internet safety for children. Follow this link for more information.

It is C3’s corporate philosophy to share knowledge and give back to the community whenever possible. Michelle has been a board member for several Cincinnati organizations including: Authentic Leadership-Cincinnati, New Media Cincinnati, IHM Job Search Group, St. Ursula Academy, the Institute for Social Media at Cincinnati State, the Archdiocese of Cincinnati Communications Commission and the Procter & Gamble Global Alumni Network Speakers Bureau team.

C3 is instituting a formal request program to meet the needs of non-profits and community organizations in 2013.  Organizations can apply for an opportunity each quarter to receive free strategic social media marketing assistance or speaker services for their group.

Requirements:

  • Must be a 501(c)(3) or community organization within the Cincinnati/Dayton/Northern Kentucky area
  • Speaking segment limited to a maximum of two (2) hours
  • Consulting services limited to a maximum of two (2) hours
  • Deadline for first quarter 2013 requests is 12/31/12.

*See website for full information and to register (http://creatingconnectionsconsulting.com)

Share this information with a group that could use some pro bono services.  They will appreciate your gift of information!  Thank you.
 

New!! Custom Tagging on Facebook

Here’s a little gem that I picked up over the weekend. While it can be entertaining and useful, I also see implications for initial spammers. You can now Tag a Page or Application by naming it something else.  For example, let’s say I post on my personal Facebook Profile or another Page the following statement:

Hanging out with the most progressive bunch of people on the planet.
 

I can substitute the hyper-linked phrase:  “progressive bunch of people” for my actual C3 Facebook Page, so that when someone clicks on the hopefully enticing statement, they will be taken directly to my C3 Facebook Page.

The code for the status update would look like this:

@@[0:[91368159145:0:progressive bunch of people]]

The numbers refer to my Page ID and the terms that I want to stand in for the ID follow the colon and precede the closing brackets.

I can just see the “questionable” sites using the new .xxx domain using this as a redirect to their Facebook Pages with innocent sounding links.  Makes me think that the capability won’t be around for a long time, so use judiously while you can and make your friends think that you are a social media rockstar!  Ok, I could have said GURU, but I detest that moniker!

Now go Market your Page!

p.s. if you are still reading- here’s a site that will crank out the html code for you:  C3 Tip of the Day.

~Michelle Beckham

Simplifying Social Media via C3
 

Update: as of 12/8/11 the capability to custom tag on Facebook seems to be disabled. Not sure at this point if it is a glitch or a permanent ban by Facebook.

Importance of Social Media Strategy for Small Business in Cincinnati

Giving Keynote talk on Importance of Social Media Strategy at Berry Seminar ~photo via Berry

I recently gave a Keynote Address on the Importance of Social Media Strategy to 250 small businesses from the Cincinnati Region at Xavier University’s Cintas Center on behalf of The Berry Company.  I wanted to share the gist of my talk here on the Blog.  The presentation was taped, and once receive a copy from Berry, I will post that as well.  It includes a Q & A session.

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We don’t have a choice on whether we DO social media, the question is how well we DO it“. 

This quote from Socialnomics author and digital media expert Erik Qualman is even more telling today than when originally published in 2009. Today, Businesses realize that they need to have an online presence. Like it or not, we are living in an online world with current and future customers and clients who have grown up with this technology and for whom interacting with brands on Twitter and Facebook is just second nature.

With the advent of Social media, Small businesses are seeing a leveled playing field, where they have the ability to the same platforms as the big companies and brands.   The R(e)volution has begun and the time is now for your organization to get on board with reaching your target audience where they reside: ONLINE

Social Media Platforms via Mashable
Social Media Platforms ~ photo via Mashable

For those of you who currently maintain a social media presence for your company, you can attest to the fact that it can seem overwhelming.  There are many digital media and social networking choices for a company to use.  The key is in understanding what the tools are, how they work, and how to maximize them for your business.

Stratgey   This is all part of setting a distinct strategy for your online marketing efforts.

Having spent 15 years with consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble in sales and marketing roles, I can tell you that having a Branding Strategy is absolutely critical in your marketing efforts.  I’d like to share an exercise that I use with my clients to ensure consistency and clarity around their brand or business’s online marketing efforts.

C3 Branding Strategy Exercise
C3 Branding Strategy Exercise

After these questions are answered, the results are formulated into a summary statement that describes the brand. This statement becomes fodder for all Social/Digital platforms that are used ensuring a constant message and image is being shared across all channels no matter where a potential customer may find you online.  

Having a social media presence goes well beyond just setting up the various platforms. Social Media is much, much more. It includes the following critical elements: 

Key Tenets to Social Media Success
Key Tenets to Social Media Success by Michelle Beckham of C3
  1. Creating Signature Experiences- providing an online experience that is memorable, fitting to your brand, and brings the customer back to you
  2. Creating Needed Content- we are no longer living in a Broadcast state, nor one with static information- instead a successful brand will provide content that is Needed by consumers. Don’t know what that is?  Just ask them!
  3. Conversations- It’s all about the dialogue and sharing of information between the brand and the consumer. We are no longer living in a Word of Mouth society, but are permanent residents in the new World of Mouth universe.
  4. Engagement- Consists of providing content that sparks some touch. Whether it’s a comment, a Like, a Re-Tweet, or a +1 on Google Plus. When the consumer takes action, that touch has a ripple affect seeping into their own social graph and spreading news of your brand throughout their network.
  5. Relationships- This is what is achieved by implementing focused content and engagement strategies and being fully present on the platform. The worst thing any business can do is, set up the Open Sign and be permanently out to lunch.

When we take a look at how some national and local businesses are winning in the market place in these key areas, we find a variety of tools that you can implement as well.  They include examples from (see video to hear about the specifics for each example):

Red Bull, Ford Mustang, Dunkin Donuts, Coco-Cola, Chick-Fil-A- Western Hills, It’s Working Out Suspension Training, Cincinnati, Ben & Jerry’s, P&G’s Old Spice Brand, Shane Gibson, owner of a Canadian Social Media Agency and author of Guerilla Social Media Marketing.

Tweet from Shane Gibson

The key to an effective social media strategy is crafting a plan that integrates best practices with a mission and vision for each platform.

 The first step on this journey is to become educated on Social Media, even if someone else in your organization will be ultimately responsible for managing your online real estate.  Social Media is a constantly changing landscape and it pays off to stay informed.

Know your audience and where they reside, this will help you to determine the best platform(s) to reach your consumers. Knowing the correct number of platforms to be engaged in can seem overwhelming, having a strategist assist you in the process can be well worth the expense. I love social media marketing executive and author Brian Solis’s response to the perennial question: How many social media profiles should a brand have?”:

The answer is as simple as it is revealing. Create the number of channels that meaningfully extend the focus of your business… and relevant stories to the dedicated audience they’re designed to serve.  Additionally, only create the number of channels that strengthen the brand rather than dilute it and also possess the capacity to ensure its ongoing relevance.”

Here is a plan I have put together for the Small Business Sector:

  • Create a Plan that integrates with your off-line marketing and advertising programs
  • Determine In-house or Agency management based on skill base, time and/or budget
  • Set Goals & Objectives
  • Create Content Plan for each Platform- Be mindful of language and timing (day/part)
  • Create Engagement Strategies for each Platform
  • Connect all Platforms & Cross Market
  • Monitor the Platforms – Be an Active Listener & Be Responsive
  • Use Analytics to Measure & Make Changes
Lafley Quote Slide via Dave Knox- HardKnoxLife.com
Lafley Quote Slide via Dave Knox- HardKnoxLife.com

~ A.G. Lafley, former CEO of Procter & Gamble

Letting go includes the art of listening. Brands need to create a reputation management program to stay on top of the conversations that are occurring about them; whether they happen on brand-sponsored sites or on someone’s personal blog.  Addressing any unpleasant information directly and in a customer-service focused way will show that you are active and responsive to feedback. Remember the old adage: What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas?  Well, what happens in Vegas now stays on Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn and Blogs and….. you get the point. We are truly living in a ‘World of Mouth’ universe.

In Conclusion here are 6 Steps to Social Media For Business Success:

  1. Be Consistent
  2. Be Authentic- speak in a voice true to the brand
  3. Be Consumer-focused
  4. Be BOLD- this is an evolving playground- jump in and try some things!
  5. Measure, Measure, Measure- if you don’t have an indication of where you have come from, how can you move forward?
  6. Reputation Management: Be on top of your Brand.

We have certainly have come a long way from simply creating a social media presence. Winning in today’s market place involves real interaction with the consumer in a dynamic back and forth conversation that brings value to both parties. Metrics are key and measuring results vs. objectives should be an inherent part of the plan. We must remember however, that success is not in sheer numbers of Fans , Followers or Friends; success should be measured in terms of influence and the number of brand evangelists that have emerged in support of your efforts. Better to have 500 followers singing your praises then 5000 who don’t interact with your brand in any way.

I wish you all good luck.  Enter the Digital Space Boldly!

Michelle Beckham-Corbin with C3: Creating Connections Consulting, LLC

Should We Be Facebook Friends??

I have been thinking a lot about Facebook strategy as the number of Facebook Friend Add Requests on my personal Profile increase for me.  My strategy for Facebook (Profile) has been crafted as a way for me to communicate freely with the people on my Friend list. I am not on Facebook (Profiles) to connect to people I don’t know or vaguely know. I’m not there to make strategic connections that would enhance my business relationships. I certainly do not want to connect to any of my clients. I have a Facebook Page for these connections.

Many Faces of Michelle Beckham in text images
Who Am I?

My simple goal with my PERSONAL Facebook Profile is to connect with those people who are the absolute closest to me: family, extended family, friends from back in the day who knew me when and can truly say that I haven’t changed a bit, professional colleagues with whom I have bonded/connected and who click with my inner core and have become very good friends.  I want to connect with people who get the true essence of me.  I want to exist in a perpetual state of “letting my hair down” on my Profile.

Part of my personal strategy is compartmentalization. When I am walking in the business world- my talk focuses on the business walk. I don’t mention family. I don’t mention kids.  You won’t find me saying a single thing about family life on Twitter or on my Facebook Page (Business). You won’t know that I have climbed the Great Wall of China, been a Girl Scout Leader or was the Secretary of a large school’s PTO Board. This is neither a wrong strategy nor a right strategy, it’s just my strategy. Believe it or not, I’m one of the most private people on the planet and this works for me.

If you are connected to me on Facebook (Profile), then you will know that I feature and talk about my kids constantly. Some of the colleagues-turned-friends may be annoyed at times, but my goal is to share news with a vast number of family members and relatives who look forward to hearing about these topics.  I am not a Cincinnati native and don’t have legions of relatives living in my neighborhood as so many of my Cincy-born friends do, so perhaps they don’t get the need to broadcast. I had one Cincy native friend actually leave a bible quote as a comment after a post I wrote about something my daughter had achieved- hinting at the sin of pride or something like that.

Everyone has their own strategy for using Facebook. They are all different and I respect each person’s choice.  So next time you get miffed about what you see in your news feed, think about this post and dial the friend down in your news feed settings, or perhaps examine whether you truly should be Facebook Friends after all…..

Cincinnati Social Media For Business Intermediate Level Workshop

Cincinnati Social Media For Business Workshop Series

I am very excited to be back next month (April) with another installment of the Social Media For Business Workshop Series in partnership with the Warren County Career Center, a University System of Ohio Provider. The next workshop will be held on April 12th from 1:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m. and is an intermediate level workshop: Building Your Business/Non-Profit With Social Media: Welcome to the R(E)volution!

March showcased two courses for local businesses and non-profits: an introductory social media course and a hands-on LinkedIn Lab training class. March participants ranged from professional practices in the health and wellness fields, traditional retail businesses, mortgage companies and  educational institutions: quite a variety of backgrounds!  All desired the same outcome: to learn more about the various social media platforms that exist today.

The introductory class was a broad overview of seven platforms, while the April class takes participants to a more in-depth view on four key platforms: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google.  We will be examining important strategies and measures for each tool and discussing the integration of social media into a full marketing program.

If you are ready to go beyond mere familiarity and want to gain a true understanding of how these tools can impact your business, then this class is for you.  Space is limited and many of the March workshop participants signed on for this next level after having a great experience in the introductory workshop, so register soon if you want to secure a space.

Here’s what some of the Intro to Social Media participants had to say about the program:

I enjoyed both of your presentations and am looking forward to the next two!  Thanks again for your expertise and enthusiasm….”

~Jim F.

“Great job! Great information! Thank you.  I plan to be a pioneer, and I think your seminars are going to be what gets me there.  I’ll see you next month!”

~Julie L.

So what are you waiting for?

Follow this link for additional information and registration for the April 12th workshop:  Building Your Business/Non-Profit With Social Media: Welcome to the R(E)volution!

Bonus Video below discusses recent Facebook changes to Pages (Business Profiles):