Avoid This Surprisingly Common Recipe for Creepy Content

Ready Player One has been called pure “nostalgic nerd-bait” by film critics, but that’s not the only reason it earned $300 million worldwide in just its first week. It follows some very well-worn blueprints of blockbuster filmmaking that its iconic director, Steven Spielberg, practically invented. From the high-energy title sequence to the quintessential Spielbergian finale, … Continue reading “Avoid This Surprisingly Common Recipe for Creepy Content”

The post Avoid This Surprisingly Common Recipe for Creepy Content appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

Ready Player One has been called pure “nostalgic nerd-bait” by film critics, but that’s not the only reason it earned $300 million worldwide in just its first week. It follows some very well-worn blueprints of blockbuster filmmaking that its iconic director, Steven Spielberg, practically invented. From the high-energy title sequence to the quintessential Spielbergian finale, … Continue reading “Avoid This Surprisingly Common Recipe for Creepy Content”

The post Avoid This Surprisingly Common Recipe for Creepy Content appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

45% of People Trust Facebook Even Less After the Zuckerberg Hearings [New Data]

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony before U.S. lawmakers earlier this month seems to have done little to restore trust in the company.

According to a HubSpot survey of 300 U.S. internet users, only 12% of people trust Facebook more than they did before Zuckerberg’s congressional hearings.

In fact, the results indicate that nearly half of the respondents (45%) trust Facebook even less than they did before the testimony, with 28% reporting that they have “much less” faith in the company now.

Less than half of the respondents (43%) report that their trust in Facebook has stayed the same.

6e517025-b347-4be6-820d-be8c49122549

While the extent to which the respondents viewed the hearings isn’t immediately clear, these findings do align with recent data from Blind, an anonymous workplace app for tech company employees.

After the Zuckerberg hearings, Blind app users were asked if they’ve deleted Facebook since original revelations about the misuse of personal data by consulting firm Cambridge Analytica. We previously reported on an earlier Blind survey indicating that 31% of tech workers said they would delete Facebook.

According to this most recent survey, however, 13.7% of Blind app users said they did, in fact, delete Facebook, with 23.6% reporting that they restricted their privacy settings.

Did-you-delete-facebook-infographic-576x1000

Source: Blind

“Trust was a recurring theme at these hearings, so it’s no surprise that trust in the company has taken a hit in the days and weeks since Zuckerberg’s testimony,” says Henry Franco, HubSpot’s social campaign strategy associate. “Regardless of where they stood on the political spectrum, most Senators and Representatives seemed to agree that Facebook had its work cut out for it in winning back its users’ trust, and even Zuckerberg seemed to recognize as much.”

Prior to the hearings, HubSpot conducted research on the general levels of trust in a number of well-known brands — both within tech and other consumer sectors — and their CEOs. In that survey of 2,319 consumers in the U.S. and UK, Facebook ranked third-to-last in terms of its trust among 13 brands, with 27% of respondents calling the company trustworthy. 

trust in brands-1

When asked the same question about CEOs, Zuckerberg ranked fifth-to-last, with 20% of respondents identifying him as trustworthy.

trust in CEOs-1

What’s interesting about these findings is that the tech industry itself doesn’t appear to be highly lacking consumer trust — at least prior to the hearings. The top-ranking companies are Netflix, Amazon, and Microsoft, with over half of survey respondents indicating that they find the brands trustworthy.

Where there’s less faith, it seems, is in the leadership. Even though 57% of respondents would describe Amazon as trustworthy, only 37% would say the same of its CEO, Jeff Bezos.

That could at least partially explain why Zuckerberg’s hearings did no favors for public trust in Facebook. Given that faith in some executives is already less than that in the brands they lead, it makes sense that his testimony — which left many questions largely unanswered — would chip away at Facebook’s brand trust rather than bolster it, especially in the wake of an existing scandal.

The hearings didn’t end there, though. Tomorrow, Dr. Aleksandr Kogan — the Cambridge University professor behind the data-harvesting app who eventually sold personal user information to Cambridge Analytica — will testify before UK Parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee.

On Thursday, Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer will also testify before that committee, despite Zuckerberg’s presence being requested by Members of Parliament more than once.

That same day, in the U.S., the House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on the “filtering practices of social media platforms.” Representatives from Facebook, Google, and Twitter have been invited to testify, though none have yet confirmed.

How or if these events will continue to shape consumer trust in social media remains to be seen — though earning that trust, it seems, is a long-tail game.

“To win back trust, they’re going to need time, a grand gesture, some period without making any serious mistakes,” says Franco. “Or some combination of the three.”

Featured image credit: “Yesterday’s news & waiting for today’s news to show up. Facebook: Transparency and Use of Consumer Data hearing, Rayburn House Office Building, Washington DC” by Lorie Shaull, used under CC BY / Cropped from original

The post 45% of People Trust Facebook Even Less After the Zuckerberg Hearings [New Data] appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony before U.S. lawmakers earlier this month seems to have done little to restore trust in the company.

According to a HubSpot survey of 300 U.S. internet users, only 12% of people trust Facebook more than they did before Zuckerberg’s congressional hearings.

In fact, the results indicate that nearly half of the respondents (45%) trust Facebook even less than they did before the testimony, with 28% reporting that they have “much less” faith in the company now.

Less than half of the respondents (43%) report that their trust in Facebook has stayed the same.

6e517025-b347-4be6-820d-be8c49122549

While the extent to which the respondents viewed the hearings isn’t immediately clear, these findings do align with recent data from Blind, an anonymous workplace app for tech company employees.

After the Zuckerberg hearings, Blind app users were asked if they’ve deleted Facebook since original revelations about the misuse of personal data by consulting firm Cambridge Analytica. We previously reported on an earlier Blind survey indicating that 31% of tech workers said they would delete Facebook.

According to this most recent survey, however, 13.7% of Blind app users said they did, in fact, delete Facebook, with 23.6% reporting that they restricted their privacy settings.

Did-you-delete-facebook-infographic-576x1000

Source: Blind

“Trust was a recurring theme at these hearings, so it’s no surprise that trust in the company has taken a hit in the days and weeks since Zuckerberg’s testimony,” says Henry Franco, HubSpot’s social campaign strategy associate. “Regardless of where they stood on the political spectrum, most Senators and Representatives seemed to agree that Facebook had its work cut out for it in winning back its users’ trust, and even Zuckerberg seemed to recognize as much.”

Prior to the hearings, HubSpot conducted research on the general levels of trust in a number of well-known brands — both within tech and other consumer sectors — and their CEOs. In that survey of 2,319 consumers in the U.S. and UK, Facebook ranked third-to-last in terms of its trust among 13 brands, with 27% of respondents calling the company trustworthy. 

trust in brands-1

When asked the same question about CEOs, Zuckerberg ranked fifth-to-last, with 20% of respondents identifying him as trustworthy.

trust in CEOs-1

What’s interesting about these findings is that the tech industry itself doesn’t appear to be highly lacking consumer trust — at least prior to the hearings. The top-ranking companies are Netflix, Amazon, and Microsoft, with over half of survey respondents indicating that they find the brands trustworthy.

Where there’s less faith, it seems, is in the leadership. Even though 57% of respondents would describe Amazon as trustworthy, only 37% would say the same of its CEO, Jeff Bezos.

That could at least partially explain why Zuckerberg’s hearings did no favors for public trust in Facebook. Given that faith in some executives is already less than that in the brands they lead, it makes sense that his testimony — which left many questions largely unanswered — would chip away at Facebook’s brand trust rather than bolster it, especially in the wake of an existing scandal.

The hearings didn’t end there, though. Tomorrow, Dr. Aleksandr Kogan — the Cambridge University professor behind the data-harvesting app who eventually sold personal user information to Cambridge Analytica — will testify before UK Parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee.

On Thursday, Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer will also testify before that committee, despite Zuckerberg’s presence being requested by Members of Parliament more than once.

That same day, in the U.S., the House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on the “filtering practices of social media platforms.” Representatives from Facebook, Google, and Twitter have been invited to testify, though none have yet confirmed.

How or if these events will continue to shape consumer trust in social media remains to be seen — though earning that trust, it seems, is a long-tail game.

“To win back trust, they’re going to need time, a grand gesture, some period without making any serious mistakes,” says Franco. “Or some combination of the three.”

Featured image credit: “Yesterday’s news & waiting for today’s news to show up. Facebook: Transparency and Use of Consumer Data hearing, Rayburn House Office Building, Washington DC” by Lorie Shaull, used under CC BY / Cropped from original

The post 45% of People Trust Facebook Even Less After the Zuckerberg Hearings [New Data] appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

How to Distribute Content Effectively Across Multiple Channels

Your content is great. You’ve been applying new strategies and learning how to master the art of storytelling to make your content more engaging.

But now what? This is useless if you’re unable to distribute it to your audience.

I see this problem all the time when I’m consulting businesses. They have excellent writers who know how to write great blog posts, but nobody is reading their work.

The key here is learning how to distribute your content so it can reach the widest audience possible.

If you’re using only one distribution channel, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity.

Some of you may be thinking, “If it’s on my website, someone will eventually see it.”

That’s not true. You can’t rely on your website alone for content distribution. That’s because people consume information in a wide variety of ways.

For example, if you have a B2B company, you should be aware that majority of your content is being viewed on desktop computers.

image1 1

B2C companies, on the other hand, need to put more emphasis on optimizing their mobile websites for Google searches.

But effective content distribution goes way beyond the types of devices your audience is using. Using multiple methods of distribution gives more people a chance to see your content.

Use this guide as a reference for how to successfully deliver content to your target audience. Here’s what you need to know.

Establish an active presence on all your channels

Your distribution won’t be effective if you’re adding content to each channel only once per month. If you want more views and engagement, the first thing you need to do is make sure all your platforms are active.

This is the best way to make sure that as many people as possible have regular access to your brand.

Start simple. How many social media profiles do you have? Create accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube if you haven’t already.

You’ve been adding new subscribers to your email list, but how often do you send them messages?

People subscribed to your emails because they wanted to hear from you. They follow you on social media because they are interested in your products and services. Don’t let them down by going silent.

image2

While you should post often, make sure you don’t get too carried away. Otherwise, this strategy could backfire and you could be perceived as annoying.

We know that 57.5% of social media users unfollowed a brand on social media because they thought the brand posted too many promotions.

Find that middle ground. Post content daily, but do this without blowing up your followers’ timelines.

Understand your audience

As I said earlier, not everyone consumes content the same way. Conduct research to clearly identify your target market.

Once you know whom you’re trying to reach, it will be easier to figure out how to target them based on their consumption habits.

First of all, think about the platform you’re distributing on. This will tell you how your audience wants to consume.

For example, take a look at your Instagram followers. If you’re debating what you should post on your Instagram profile, stick to pictures and videos. It wouldn’t be effective to write short blogs in the caption of a photo.

Instead, focus your website on more text-heavy content, such as blogs. Send newsletters to your email subscribers. Keep your Twitter audience updated with short newsworthy headlines.

Does this make sense? Make sure the content is tailored to each channel based on your audience consumes.

But you also need to realize not everyone has the same social media preferences. Take a look at some of the differences between how Millennials and Baby Boomers consume content:

image7

If you’re targeting Baby Boomers, you’ll be better off using Facebook as a primary distribution method. Don’t use hashtags. Give them written content.

But if your brand is targeting Millennials, you’ll need to focus more on Instagram, hashtags, and photos to have an effective marketing strategy.

Timing is everything

So, you just wrote a new blog post. Now what?

Do you instantly share it on all your distribution channels at once? Not necessarily.

You can add it to Facebook on one day and Twitter the next. Add a promotion to your Instagram story a few days later to drive traffic to your blog post.

Here’s the thing. There is going to be some overlap between your followers on different distribution channels. You don’t want to bombard them all at once with the same marketing pitch.

Put yourself in the shoes of your customer. They open Facebook and see a link to your new blog post. Then they log into Twitter and see the same headline.

Later that day, they’re reading through their emails and see you emailed them a link to that blog post as well. This is overkill. Plus, it can annoy your audience. They want to hear from you, but not that often.

You also need to consider the actual day and time when you’re posting new content. The optimal time will vary based on the distribution channel:

image4 1

Use this as a guide to make sure that as many people as possible can see your posts. But this will depend on what you’re talking about.

For example, let’s say your brand is releasing some type of breaking news that’s time-sensitive. Obviously, you shouldn’t wait until the next optimal time to tell your audience.

You’ll want to get this information out on all of your channels right away. But if it’s just a general discussion topic that’s not time-sensitive, it can wait.

Make sure your content is relevant

The best content is always on topic and relevant to your brand.

Yes, I know that earlier I talked about breaking news as an example of time-sensitive content that should be shared right away.

However, that doesn’t mean you should be sharing every news story you hear.

For example, let’s say your company manufactures home furniture. There’s no reason for you to be alerting your customers with weather updates unless, of course, this weather is somehow impacting your business, such as a delay in shipping.

Also, earlier I said you should distribute content on different channels based on a specific time or day of the week.

But that doesn’t work if you’re promoting an advertisement or offer that expires soon, such as a flash sale.

Take advantage of automation tools

As I said earlier, you’ll need to stay active on all your distribution channels. But I realize this can be a challenge.

You’re busy. I get it. I’m sure you’ve got dozens of tasks you think are more important than posting new content.

If this sounds like your situation, you’ll definitely want to try some of my favorite time-saving social media marketing tools.

Automated tools can make your life much easier. For example, take a look at Hootsuite:

image6 1

The platform allows you to schedule your social media posts automatically. This can save you a ton of time.

Now, you can write a new blog post and then schedule the post on the day and time that will get the most engagement depending on the platform.

It’s easier to do this all at once instead of manually posting each time.

You can dedicate just one or two days a week to schedule your posts and let the automation tools take care of the rest of the work for you. Plus, seeing everything in a calendar view on the platform will help you make sure the distribution is even.

Repurpose old content

This piggybacks on our last point. You’ve got to work smarter, not harder.

If you have some marketing materials or documents written a couple of years ago that are still relevant, you can reuse them.

You may have written a very informative blog post with lots of data and facts to back up your claims. But at the time, you didn’t have the marketing skills to get it distributed to a wide audience.

The views and engagement on that page were really low. But that doesn’t mean you can’t bring that post back to life. You’ve got a couple of options here.

First, you can write a new article on the same topic, changing the title. Use your old post as a reference to make the writing process go faster.

Or you could republish an old post with updated statistics. Here’s an example of how HubSpot uses this strategy with its blog posts:

image5 1

Statistics change over time. This is especially true when it comes to marketing data. That’s why I always try to use the most recent sources to back up my data.

HubSpot recognized that the research they conducted in 2012 was outdated. So, they updated the statistics and republished an old post.

Your content must be shareable

Did you notice anything else in the HubSpot’s example above?

The post is plastered with sharing icons. Readers can distribute this content to others with just a click of a button through channels such as:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • E-mail
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Slack

Including these icons makes it much more likely that readers will share your content. Otherwise, you’d have to rely on them manually copying your link, opening a new tab or window, and then sharing it with their friends.

It’s too many steps to be an effective strategy that you can rely on.

There are other ways to approach this strategy as well. When you share posts on social media, you can try to encourage user-generated content as a distribution strategy.

Run a contest or promotion that requires a re-tweet, post, or share as an entry submission.

This will get your content in the hands of as many people as possible.

Leverage your relationships with influencers

As you can see, you don’t have to distribute content alone. In addition to your followers, you should form relationships with social influencers.

These people already have an active audience engaged with their posts.

When a social influencer shares something, their followers will be likely to follow up to find more information.

Don’t think you need to pay big bucks to work with a celebrity. In fact, you may have better luck working with micro influencers:

image3 1

This strategy is valid on all your distribution channels. Nearly 40% of Twitter users have made a purchase based on an influencer’s tweet.

Further, 70% of teenagers say they are influenced more by YouTube personalities than traditional celebrities, and 40% of Millennials say they can relate to their favorite YouTube stars even more than they can relate to their friends.

Make sure you find an influencer who speaks to your target market. It’s a highly effective way to distribute your content.

Track your results

When running any marketing campaign, you’ve got to use analytics tools to see how effective your distribution strategy is.

Most of your platforms will have these tools built-in. You can track engagement with your email marketing software as well as your social media networks.

If you’re using third-party tools to distribute content, they will provide accurate analytics. This is a great opportunity for you to evaluate your methods and make adjustments.

Stick with strategies that are working well. Fix the areas that need improvement.

Conclusion

Your content is useless if nobody sees it. That’s why you need to figure out how to get it in the hands of the widest audience possible.

The most effective way to do this is by leveraging multiple distribution channels.

First, you need to make sure all your channels are active. Understand your audience and give them content they want based on their preferences and platforms.

Focus on timing and relevance. To save time, take advantage of automation tools and bring old content back to life.

Make sure all your content is shareable. Use social influencers to help with your distribution strategy.

Always track your results so you can determine if your methods are successful. If you follow these tips, you’ll have higher engagement and conversion rates from all your distribution channels.

Which marketing channels are you using to distribute your content successfully?

The post How to Distribute Content Effectively Across Multiple Channels appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

Your content is great. You’ve been applying new strategies and learning how to master the art of storytelling to make your content more engaging.

But now what? This is useless if you’re unable to distribute it to your audience.

I see this problem all the time when I’m consulting businesses. They have excellent writers who know how to write great blog posts, but nobody is reading their work.

The key here is learning how to distribute your content so it can reach the widest audience possible.

If you’re using only one distribution channel, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity.

Some of you may be thinking, “If it’s on my website, someone will eventually see it.”

That’s not true. You can’t rely on your website alone for content distribution. That’s because people consume information in a wide variety of ways.

For example, if you have a B2B company, you should be aware that majority of your content is being viewed on desktop computers.

image1 1

B2C companies, on the other hand, need to put more emphasis on optimizing their mobile websites for Google searches.

But effective content distribution goes way beyond the types of devices your audience is using. Using multiple methods of distribution gives more people a chance to see your content.

Use this guide as a reference for how to successfully deliver content to your target audience. Here’s what you need to know.

Establish an active presence on all your channels

Your distribution won’t be effective if you’re adding content to each channel only once per month. If you want more views and engagement, the first thing you need to do is make sure all your platforms are active.

This is the best way to make sure that as many people as possible have regular access to your brand.

Start simple. How many social media profiles do you have? Create accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube if you haven’t already.

You’ve been adding new subscribers to your email list, but how often do you send them messages?

People subscribed to your emails because they wanted to hear from you. They follow you on social media because they are interested in your products and services. Don’t let them down by going silent.

image2

While you should post often, make sure you don’t get too carried away. Otherwise, this strategy could backfire and you could be perceived as annoying.

We know that 57.5% of social media users unfollowed a brand on social media because they thought the brand posted too many promotions.

Find that middle ground. Post content daily, but do this without blowing up your followers’ timelines.

Understand your audience

As I said earlier, not everyone consumes content the same way. Conduct research to clearly identify your target market.

Once you know whom you’re trying to reach, it will be easier to figure out how to target them based on their consumption habits.

First of all, think about the platform you’re distributing on. This will tell you how your audience wants to consume.

For example, take a look at your Instagram followers. If you’re debating what you should post on your Instagram profile, stick to pictures and videos. It wouldn’t be effective to write short blogs in the caption of a photo.

Instead, focus your website on more text-heavy content, such as blogs. Send newsletters to your email subscribers. Keep your Twitter audience updated with short newsworthy headlines.

Does this make sense? Make sure the content is tailored to each channel based on your audience consumes.

But you also need to realize not everyone has the same social media preferences. Take a look at some of the differences between how Millennials and Baby Boomers consume content:

image7

If you’re targeting Baby Boomers, you’ll be better off using Facebook as a primary distribution method. Don’t use hashtags. Give them written content.

But if your brand is targeting Millennials, you’ll need to focus more on Instagram, hashtags, and photos to have an effective marketing strategy.

Timing is everything

So, you just wrote a new blog post. Now what?

Do you instantly share it on all your distribution channels at once? Not necessarily.

You can add it to Facebook on one day and Twitter the next. Add a promotion to your Instagram story a few days later to drive traffic to your blog post.

Here’s the thing. There is going to be some overlap between your followers on different distribution channels. You don’t want to bombard them all at once with the same marketing pitch.

Put yourself in the shoes of your customer. They open Facebook and see a link to your new blog post. Then they log into Twitter and see the same headline.

Later that day, they’re reading through their emails and see you emailed them a link to that blog post as well. This is overkill. Plus, it can annoy your audience. They want to hear from you, but not that often.

You also need to consider the actual day and time when you’re posting new content. The optimal time will vary based on the distribution channel:

image4 1

Use this as a guide to make sure that as many people as possible can see your posts. But this will depend on what you’re talking about.

For example, let’s say your brand is releasing some type of breaking news that’s time-sensitive. Obviously, you shouldn’t wait until the next optimal time to tell your audience.

You’ll want to get this information out on all of your channels right away. But if it’s just a general discussion topic that’s not time-sensitive, it can wait.

Make sure your content is relevant

The best content is always on topic and relevant to your brand.

Yes, I know that earlier I talked about breaking news as an example of time-sensitive content that should be shared right away.

However, that doesn’t mean you should be sharing every news story you hear.

For example, let’s say your company manufactures home furniture. There’s no reason for you to be alerting your customers with weather updates unless, of course, this weather is somehow impacting your business, such as a delay in shipping.

Also, earlier I said you should distribute content on different channels based on a specific time or day of the week.

But that doesn’t work if you’re promoting an advertisement or offer that expires soon, such as a flash sale.

Take advantage of automation tools

As I said earlier, you’ll need to stay active on all your distribution channels. But I realize this can be a challenge.

You’re busy. I get it. I’m sure you’ve got dozens of tasks you think are more important than posting new content.

If this sounds like your situation, you’ll definitely want to try some of my favorite time-saving social media marketing tools.

Automated tools can make your life much easier. For example, take a look at Hootsuite:

image6 1

The platform allows you to schedule your social media posts automatically. This can save you a ton of time.

Now, you can write a new blog post and then schedule the post on the day and time that will get the most engagement depending on the platform.

It’s easier to do this all at once instead of manually posting each time.

You can dedicate just one or two days a week to schedule your posts and let the automation tools take care of the rest of the work for you. Plus, seeing everything in a calendar view on the platform will help you make sure the distribution is even.

Repurpose old content

This piggybacks on our last point. You’ve got to work smarter, not harder.

If you have some marketing materials or documents written a couple of years ago that are still relevant, you can reuse them.

You may have written a very informative blog post with lots of data and facts to back up your claims. But at the time, you didn’t have the marketing skills to get it distributed to a wide audience.

The views and engagement on that page were really low. But that doesn’t mean you can’t bring that post back to life. You’ve got a couple of options here.

First, you can write a new article on the same topic, changing the title. Use your old post as a reference to make the writing process go faster.

Or you could republish an old post with updated statistics. Here’s an example of how HubSpot uses this strategy with its blog posts:

image5 1

Statistics change over time. This is especially true when it comes to marketing data. That’s why I always try to use the most recent sources to back up my data.

HubSpot recognized that the research they conducted in 2012 was outdated. So, they updated the statistics and republished an old post.

Your content must be shareable

Did you notice anything else in the HubSpot’s example above?

The post is plastered with sharing icons. Readers can distribute this content to others with just a click of a button through channels such as:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • E-mail
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Slack

Including these icons makes it much more likely that readers will share your content. Otherwise, you’d have to rely on them manually copying your link, opening a new tab or window, and then sharing it with their friends.

It’s too many steps to be an effective strategy that you can rely on.

There are other ways to approach this strategy as well. When you share posts on social media, you can try to encourage user-generated content as a distribution strategy.

Run a contest or promotion that requires a re-tweet, post, or share as an entry submission.

This will get your content in the hands of as many people as possible.

Leverage your relationships with influencers

As you can see, you don’t have to distribute content alone. In addition to your followers, you should form relationships with social influencers.

These people already have an active audience engaged with their posts.

When a social influencer shares something, their followers will be likely to follow up to find more information.

Don’t think you need to pay big bucks to work with a celebrity. In fact, you may have better luck working with micro influencers:

image3 1

This strategy is valid on all your distribution channels. Nearly 40% of Twitter users have made a purchase based on an influencer’s tweet.

Further, 70% of teenagers say they are influenced more by YouTube personalities than traditional celebrities, and 40% of Millennials say they can relate to their favorite YouTube stars even more than they can relate to their friends.

Make sure you find an influencer who speaks to your target market. It’s a highly effective way to distribute your content.

Track your results

When running any marketing campaign, you’ve got to use analytics tools to see how effective your distribution strategy is.

Most of your platforms will have these tools built-in. You can track engagement with your email marketing software as well as your social media networks.

If you’re using third-party tools to distribute content, they will provide accurate analytics. This is a great opportunity for you to evaluate your methods and make adjustments.

Stick with strategies that are working well. Fix the areas that need improvement.

Conclusion

Your content is useless if nobody sees it. That’s why you need to figure out how to get it in the hands of the widest audience possible.

The most effective way to do this is by leveraging multiple distribution channels.

First, you need to make sure all your channels are active. Understand your audience and give them content they want based on their preferences and platforms.

Focus on timing and relevance. To save time, take advantage of automation tools and bring old content back to life.

Make sure all your content is shareable. Use social influencers to help with your distribution strategy.

Always track your results so you can determine if your methods are successful. If you follow these tips, you’ll have higher engagement and conversion rates from all your distribution channels.

Which marketing channels are you using to distribute your content successfully?

The post How to Distribute Content Effectively Across Multiple Channels appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

12 Google Sheets Add-Ons to Streamline Reporting

Google Sheets can be used for a lot more than just storing and organizing your data. With the right add-ons, you can streamline your reporting process, collect big-picture data predictions and analysis, and even send emails — all from your spreadsheets.Learn how to run effective marketing campaigns using Google.

Before we dive into the 12 Google Sheet add-ons, here’s a brief overview on how to download a Google Sheets add-on:

1. Open new or existing google spreadsheet

2. Click add ons in navigation bar → “get add ons”

step two

3. Hover over an add-on and click “free” button

step three

4. In the pop-up window, sign into your google account and click “allow”

stepfour-5

4. The add-on is automatically installed

5. To manage or remove add-ons, click “manage add-ons”

stepsix-2

6. If you want to remove the add-on, click the green “manage” button, and then “remove” 

stepseven-2

Important note: You’ll only see these add-ons on a desktop, they don’t work on mobile. Also, most add-ons work for both Chrome and Safari, but some are only designed for Chrome.

Now that we’ve got that covered, here are 12 Google Sheet add-ons that can streamline your entire reporting process.

Email

1.autoCrat: When you’ve finalized a spreadsheet and want to send it to someone else, this add-on enables you to merge your spreadsheet data into a document and email your data as either an attachment. Autocrat can also mass-generate personalized documents.

autocrat

Image credit to autoCrat add-on.

2.Yet Another Mail Merge: This tool automates email campaigns, tracks emails, and lets you personalize emails for specific contact groups. To do this, you simply import your contacts into a spreadsheet, and choose a Google email template. You can send one generic email to all your contacts, or customize emails for different contact segments.

yetanothermailmerge

Image credit to Yet Another Mail Merge add-on.

3.Gmail Scheduler: Gmail Scheduler allows you to schedule emails for later. After writing your email in Gmail and saving it as a draft, your spreadsheet will automatically send the email at the appropriately allotted time.

gmailscheduler

Image credit to Gmail Scheduler add-on.

Organization:

4. Document Studio: If your data is spread out across spreadsheets, Excel sheets, Google Form Responses, and CSV files, this add-on makes it possible to combine all your miscellaneous information into one clean document. Among other things, Document Studio assists you in creating highly sophisticated marketing pitches or business letters. It’s your choice whether you want your final document in PDF format, Google Sheets, Docs, or Slides, Microsoft Powerpoint, Word, or Excel, HTML or Plain text, or an ePub eBook.

documentstudio

Image credit to Document Studio add-on.

5. Power Tools: Power Tools is a useful all-in-one service to cleanup data, reformat it, combine sheets, split columns, customize formulas, and more. If there’s one service in Power Tools you use a lot, you can even save it as a favorite. The add-on also automates mundane tasks, like adding or removing text by position.

powertools-1

Image credit to Power Tools add-on.

Visuals:

6. Table Styles: If you want to use your spreadsheets for presentation purposes, Table Styles helps you achieve a sleek style. With Table Styles, you’re able to add custom or predefined styles, fonts, borders, and colors to your sheet. If you were presenting a spreadsheet at a marketing conference with company data, for example, you could use your company colors for a professional look.

tablestyle

Image credit to Table Styles add-on.

7. Awesome Table: This add-on gives you the option of viewing or analyzing data in other visual forms. Awesome Table transforms your data into charts, maps, cards, visual tables, or other custom interfaces.

awesometable

Image credit to Awesome Table add-on.

Data Analysis, Calculations, Predictions:

8. Solver: Solver helps you maximize profits, minimize costs, and deal with budget allocation, which is particularly useful if you’re in charge of budgeting multiple marketing campaigns at once. Solver can calculate and model your data, and provide solution optimization, as well.

solver

Image credit to Solver add-on.

9. BigML: Conceiving predictions with your data is often tricky, time-consuming, and inefficient. This add-on solves that problem by extracting value from your known data and filling the blank cells in each data row with predictions. It also assigns confidence levels to predictions, and populates lead score values.

bigml

Image credit to BigML.com.

10. AdStage: If you’re employing paid marketing strategies, this tool incorporates your paid marketing performance data directly into your spreadsheet. It provides tools for A/B testing, so you can determine your top-performing campaigns or ads. It also enables you to gather cross-network SEM data in one table, and more.

adstage

Image credit to AdStage add-on.

Publishing and Sharing:

11. AppSheet: Building a new mobile app has never been easier — this add-on allows you to fill your spreadsheet with data including contacts, products, inventory, property, and anything else you want tracked, and then automatically converts that data into your new mobile app. If you’re interested in creating a custom app to distribute to employees or customers, AppSheet works effectively within minutes.

appsheet-1

Image credit to AppSheet.com.

12. MarkdownTableMaker: If you’d prefer seeing your data in a Markdown table, this add-on converts your spreadsheet (or individual columns) into Markdown. You’re also able to save the Markdown conversion to Google Drive, or copy and paste it anywhere else you want.

markdown

Image credit to MarkdownTableMaker add-on.

How to Run a Marketing Campaign with GSuite

 
Check out this free ebook on running effectibe marketing campaigns using GSuite.

The post 12 Google Sheets Add-Ons to Streamline Reporting appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

Google Sheets can be used for a lot more than just storing and organizing your data. With the right add-ons, you can streamline your reporting process, collect big-picture data predictions and analysis, and even send emails — all from your spreadsheets.Learn how to run effective marketing campaigns using Google.

Before we dive into the 12 Google Sheet add-ons, here’s a brief overview on how to download a Google Sheets add-on:

1. Open new or existing google spreadsheet

2. Click add ons in navigation bar → “get add ons”

step two

3. Hover over an add-on and click “free” button

step three

4. In the pop-up window, sign into your google account and click “allow”

stepfour-5

4. The add-on is automatically installed

5. To manage or remove add-ons, click “manage add-ons”

stepsix-2

6. If you want to remove the add-on, click the green “manage” button, and then “remove” 

stepseven-2

Important note: You’ll only see these add-ons on a desktop, they don’t work on mobile. Also, most add-ons work for both Chrome and Safari, but some are only designed for Chrome.

Now that we’ve got that covered, here are 12 Google Sheet add-ons that can streamline your entire reporting process.

Email

1.autoCrat: When you’ve finalized a spreadsheet and want to send it to someone else, this add-on enables you to merge your spreadsheet data into a document and email your data as either an attachment. Autocrat can also mass-generate personalized documents.

autocrat

Image credit to autoCrat add-on.

2.Yet Another Mail Merge: This tool automates email campaigns, tracks emails, and lets you personalize emails for specific contact groups. To do this, you simply import your contacts into a spreadsheet, and choose a Google email template. You can send one generic email to all your contacts, or customize emails for different contact segments.

yetanothermailmerge

Image credit to Yet Another Mail Merge add-on.

3.Gmail Scheduler: Gmail Scheduler allows you to schedule emails for later. After writing your email in Gmail and saving it as a draft, your spreadsheet will automatically send the email at the appropriately allotted time.

gmailscheduler

Image credit to Gmail Scheduler add-on.

Organization:

4. Document Studio: If your data is spread out across spreadsheets, Excel sheets, Google Form Responses, and CSV files, this add-on makes it possible to combine all your miscellaneous information into one clean document. Among other things, Document Studio assists you in creating highly sophisticated marketing pitches or business letters. It’s your choice whether you want your final document in PDF format, Google Sheets, Docs, or Slides, Microsoft Powerpoint, Word, or Excel, HTML or Plain text, or an ePub eBook.

documentstudio

Image credit to Document Studio add-on.

5. Power Tools: Power Tools is a useful all-in-one service to cleanup data, reformat it, combine sheets, split columns, customize formulas, and more. If there’s one service in Power Tools you use a lot, you can even save it as a favorite. The add-on also automates mundane tasks, like adding or removing text by position.

powertools-1

Image credit to Power Tools add-on.

Visuals:

6. Table Styles: If you want to use your spreadsheets for presentation purposes, Table Styles helps you achieve a sleek style. With Table Styles, you’re able to add custom or predefined styles, fonts, borders, and colors to your sheet. If you were presenting a spreadsheet at a marketing conference with company data, for example, you could use your company colors for a professional look.

tablestyle

Image credit to Table Styles add-on.

7. Awesome Table: This add-on gives you the option of viewing or analyzing data in other visual forms. Awesome Table transforms your data into charts, maps, cards, visual tables, or other custom interfaces.

awesometable

Image credit to Awesome Table add-on.

Data Analysis, Calculations, Predictions:

8. Solver: Solver helps you maximize profits, minimize costs, and deal with budget allocation, which is particularly useful if you’re in charge of budgeting multiple marketing campaigns at once. Solver can calculate and model your data, and provide solution optimization, as well.

solver

Image credit to Solver add-on.

9. BigML: Conceiving predictions with your data is often tricky, time-consuming, and inefficient. This add-on solves that problem by extracting value from your known data and filling the blank cells in each data row with predictions. It also assigns confidence levels to predictions, and populates lead score values.

bigml

Image credit to BigML.com.

10. AdStage: If you’re employing paid marketing strategies, this tool incorporates your paid marketing performance data directly into your spreadsheet. It provides tools for A/B testing, so you can determine your top-performing campaigns or ads. It also enables you to gather cross-network SEM data in one table, and more.

adstage

Image credit to AdStage add-on.

Publishing and Sharing:

11. AppSheet: Building a new mobile app has never been easier — this add-on allows you to fill your spreadsheet with data including contacts, products, inventory, property, and anything else you want tracked, and then automatically converts that data into your new mobile app. If you’re interested in creating a custom app to distribute to employees or customers, AppSheet works effectively within minutes.

appsheet-1

Image credit to AppSheet.com.

12. MarkdownTableMaker: If you’d prefer seeing your data in a Markdown table, this add-on converts your spreadsheet (or individual columns) into Markdown. You’re also able to save the Markdown conversion to Google Drive, or copy and paste it anywhere else you want.

markdown

Image credit to MarkdownTableMaker add-on.

How to Run a Marketing Campaign with GSuite

 
Check out this free ebook on running effectibe marketing campaigns using GSuite.

The post 12 Google Sheets Add-Ons to Streamline Reporting appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

How to Buy Instagram Likes (And Why It's a Bad Idea)

Instagram’s new algorithm uses engagement as the most important metric to determine a post’s popularity. Essentially, the more likes and comments your posts get, the more your posts will be seen by a larger audience.

The importance of engagement is why it doesn’t surprise me that buying likes might seem like a tempting option. It’s just not a good one.

There’s no denying that likes are critical to the success of your Instagram account. For instance, let’s say you work for a smoothie shop and want to post a delicious smoothie recipe on Instagram to attract the engagement of a health-conscious audience.Download 25 free Instagram templates to increase engagement and elevate your  presence. 

If your healthy smoothie post gets a ton of likes, it’ll have a better chance of competing with other top posts with similar hashtags, and might even appear on Instagram’s Explore page. The Explore page, which you can find on Instagram by clicking on the magnifying-glass symbol, is a compilation of posts you’ve liked and posts liked by accounts with which you often interact. Since the Explore page shows users posts their followers like, it’s an effective way for your business to reach a new audience.

But while having a bunch of likes is valuable, it’s only a productive marketing strategy if you’ve achieved them organically.

Buying Instagram likes might seem like a good method to increase engagement, but it’s actually a dangerous tactic that can do quite the opposite, decreasing your engagement and destroying your brand’s reputation.

Read on to find out the two ways users currently buy Instagram likes, and how taking either road can poke holes in your marketing strategy.

How to Buy Instagram Likes

There are two types of services you can use to buy likes on Instagram. The first type of service sells likes from fake accounts. The second type of service sells Instagram bots, which then follow real accounts and like other people’s posts for you (with the expectation that these people will then follow and like your posts, in return).

There are numerous companies out there that offer one of these services. I’m here to warn you about them all. Let’s dive into both services and see why they’re so unsafe.

1. Buy Instagram Likes from Fake Accounts

The first method, paying a service to get likes from fake accounts, is a ineffective and risky option. Since these accounts are fake, you won’t receive engagement in the form of comments, and if your real followers see you have a post with 1,000 likes but only two comments, they’re going to feel distrustful of your account’s authenticity. Even worse, fake accounts will never turn into real customers. The likes you receive from fraudulent accounts are invalid signs of customer loyalty, and won’t help you measure your post’s true performance.

If your real audience discovers some of your likes are from bogus accounts (which is easy to recognize, if these fake accounts don’t have profile pictures or posts of their own), your business could seem cheap or insincere. As a consumer, I don’t want to purchase from your business if your marketing tactics are shady. Plus, if I see your followers are fake, I’m going to assume you don’t sell high-quality products — if you don’t believe in the quality of your brand enough to attract real people, why should I?

Ultimately, these fake followers can’t buy your product or endorse you in real life, which doesn’t set your business up for long-term success.

Here’s an example of pricing for a service, Likeservice24, that offers fake-account likes in bulk:

buyinstalikes

You can see the pricing is fair ($66 for 20,000 likes), but, in the long haul, it’s not a sustainable or reputable marketing tactic.

2. Buy Instagram Bots to Follow Other People’s Accounts

There’s an unwritten “I follow you, you follow me” rule that exists on Instagram, which basically means if someone follows me, I feel obligated to follow them in return. Many people feel the same way when following other accounts on Twitter. And it’s the premise of this second method.

With this service, you’re essentially buying a bot to follow other people’s accounts, with the hope that these accounts will follow and like your posts in return. The bot basically acts as an invisible minion, following accounts from your profile and liking and commenting on posts as if it were you.

After these Instagram bots follow a bunch of accounts, they’ll eventually unfollow them, to ensure you have a better follow-to-follower ratio.

This method shares the same risky and long-term complications as the buying likes from fake accounts tactic, but there are additional dangers to using a bot. For one, the bot only knows how to “auto comment” and “auto like.” Your bot, acting as you, is not a real person and can’t understand various nuances that exist in language, which could lead to PR-related misshaps when you realize your bot engages with an account that posts inappropriate content.

For instance, the bot might start liking any posts with hashtags that you’ve programmed it to like. This could cause your bot to like irrelevant posts that don’t support your brand’s values, or even hateful accounts that post content your customers would find offensive.

Even worse, if the bot is “auto commenting” for you, it might misconstrue a post’s intent: for instance, if the word “happy” is in someone’s post about their beloved pet who recently passed away, the bot might comment, “That’s awesome, congrats!”

Below is an example of a service, Instazood, that provides bots for as little as $10. (Low price, high risk, am I right?)

 buyinstabots

There are other services to buy Instagram likes, but ultimately, you shouldn’t trust a bot or fake accounts to receive authentic engagement.

The Three Biggest Reasons Buying Instagram Likes is a Bad Idea

Besides the hazards I just mentioned, there are three big-picture problems with buying Instagram likes regardless of the service.

First, Instagram might deactivate your account if they suspect you’re not using honest methods to build a following and attract engagement. Since 2014, Instagram has been hunting for and deactivating millions of fake accounts on Instagram, and paying for likes goes against Instagram’s Community Guidelines. They want their platform to remain a place for authentic connections, and so should you.

Second, it’s not a sustainable marketing strategy: ultimately, your long-term goals should revolve around creating deep, meaningful relationships with your audience, turning this audience into real-life customers, and creating a customer service process to ensure these customers become brand advocates.

None of these outputs will come to fruition if your likes are from fake accounts.

Lastly, buying Instagram likes can actually hurt your engagement ratio. Instagram doesn’t measure how many likes each post gets. Rather, it measures how many likes each post gets in relation to how many followers you have.

This means if your posts start receiving 10,000 likes, but you only have 1,000 followers, your posts are going to be seen by fewer people, and are less likely to get discovered.

Here’s a graph from InfluencerDB to illustrate the like-to-follower ratio:

graphinstalikes

Ultimately, buying likes in an effort to increase engagement can actually decrease engagement, destroying the one thing you’re trying to get. Ironic, I know. So skip the shady shortcut to social media marketing, and use a more long-term but sustainable plan for attracting organic likes from real people. After all, those real people are the only ones who can become real customers.

Instagram for Business

 
Instagram Te

The post How to Buy Instagram Likes (And Why It's a Bad Idea) appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.

Instagram’s new algorithm uses engagement as the most important metric to determine a post’s popularity. Essentially, the more likes and comments your posts get, the more your posts will be seen by a larger audience.

The importance of engagement is why it doesn’t surprise me that buying likes might seem like a tempting option. It’s just not a good one.

There’s no denying that likes are critical to the success of your Instagram account. For instance, let’s say you work for a smoothie shop and want to post a delicious smoothie recipe on Instagram to attract the engagement of a health-conscious audience.Download 25 free Instagram templates to increase engagement and elevate your  presence. 

If your healthy smoothie post gets a ton of likes, it’ll have a better chance of competing with other top posts with similar hashtags, and might even appear on Instagram’s Explore page. The Explore page, which you can find on Instagram by clicking on the magnifying-glass symbol, is a compilation of posts you’ve liked and posts liked by accounts with which you often interact. Since the Explore page shows users posts their followers like, it’s an effective way for your business to reach a new audience.

But while having a bunch of likes is valuable, it’s only a productive marketing strategy if you’ve achieved them organically.

Buying Instagram likes might seem like a good method to increase engagement, but it’s actually a dangerous tactic that can do quite the opposite, decreasing your engagement and destroying your brand’s reputation.

Read on to find out the two ways users currently buy Instagram likes, and how taking either road can poke holes in your marketing strategy.

How to Buy Instagram Likes

There are two types of services you can use to buy likes on Instagram. The first type of service sells likes from fake accounts. The second type of service sells Instagram bots, which then follow real accounts and like other people’s posts for you (with the expectation that these people will then follow and like your posts, in return).

There are numerous companies out there that offer one of these services. I’m here to warn you about them all. Let’s dive into both services and see why they’re so unsafe.

1. Buy Instagram Likes from Fake Accounts

The first method, paying a service to get likes from fake accounts, is a ineffective and risky option. Since these accounts are fake, you won’t receive engagement in the form of comments, and if your real followers see you have a post with 1,000 likes but only two comments, they’re going to feel distrustful of your account’s authenticity. Even worse, fake accounts will never turn into real customers. The likes you receive from fraudulent accounts are invalid signs of customer loyalty, and won’t help you measure your post’s true performance.

If your real audience discovers some of your likes are from bogus accounts (which is easy to recognize, if these fake accounts don’t have profile pictures or posts of their own), your business could seem cheap or insincere. As a consumer, I don’t want to purchase from your business if your marketing tactics are shady. Plus, if I see your followers are fake, I’m going to assume you don’t sell high-quality products — if you don’t believe in the quality of your brand enough to attract real people, why should I?

Ultimately, these fake followers can’t buy your product or endorse you in real life, which doesn’t set your business up for long-term success.

Here’s an example of pricing for a service, Likeservice24, that offers fake-account likes in bulk:

buyinstalikes

You can see the pricing is fair ($66 for 20,000 likes), but, in the long haul, it’s not a sustainable or reputable marketing tactic.

2. Buy Instagram Bots to Follow Other People’s Accounts

There’s an unwritten “I follow you, you follow me” rule that exists on Instagram, which basically means if someone follows me, I feel obligated to follow them in return. Many people feel the same way when following other accounts on Twitter. And it’s the premise of this second method.

With this service, you’re essentially buying a bot to follow other people’s accounts, with the hope that these accounts will follow and like your posts in return. The bot basically acts as an invisible minion, following accounts from your profile and liking and commenting on posts as if it were you.

After these Instagram bots follow a bunch of accounts, they’ll eventually unfollow them, to ensure you have a better follow-to-follower ratio.

This method shares the same risky and long-term complications as the buying likes from fake accounts tactic, but there are additional dangers to using a bot. For one, the bot only knows how to “auto comment” and “auto like.” Your bot, acting as you, is not a real person and can’t understand various nuances that exist in language, which could lead to PR-related misshaps when you realize your bot engages with an account that posts inappropriate content.

For instance, the bot might start liking any posts with hashtags that you’ve programmed it to like. This could cause your bot to like irrelevant posts that don’t support your brand’s values, or even hateful accounts that post content your customers would find offensive.

Even worse, if the bot is “auto commenting” for you, it might misconstrue a post’s intent: for instance, if the word “happy” is in someone’s post about their beloved pet who recently passed away, the bot might comment, “That’s awesome, congrats!”

Below is an example of a service, Instazood, that provides bots for as little as $10. (Low price, high risk, am I right?)

 buyinstabots

There are other services to buy Instagram likes, but ultimately, you shouldn’t trust a bot or fake accounts to receive authentic engagement.

The Three Biggest Reasons Buying Instagram Likes is a Bad Idea

Besides the hazards I just mentioned, there are three big-picture problems with buying Instagram likes regardless of the service.

First, Instagram might deactivate your account if they suspect you’re not using honest methods to build a following and attract engagement. Since 2014, Instagram has been hunting for and deactivating millions of fake accounts on Instagram, and paying for likes goes against Instagram’s Community Guidelines. They want their platform to remain a place for authentic connections, and so should you.

Second, it’s not a sustainable marketing strategy: ultimately, your long-term goals should revolve around creating deep, meaningful relationships with your audience, turning this audience into real-life customers, and creating a customer service process to ensure these customers become brand advocates.

None of these outputs will come to fruition if your likes are from fake accounts.

Lastly, buying Instagram likes can actually hurt your engagement ratio. Instagram doesn’t measure how many likes each post gets. Rather, it measures how many likes each post gets in relation to how many followers you have.

This means if your posts start receiving 10,000 likes, but you only have 1,000 followers, your posts are going to be seen by fewer people, and are less likely to get discovered.

Here’s a graph from InfluencerDB to illustrate the like-to-follower ratio:

graphinstalikes

Ultimately, buying likes in an effort to increase engagement can actually decrease engagement, destroying the one thing you’re trying to get. Ironic, I know. So skip the shady shortcut to social media marketing, and use a more long-term but sustainable plan for attracting organic likes from real people. After all, those real people are the only ones who can become real customers.

Instagram for Business

 
Instagram Te

The post How to Buy Instagram Likes (And Why It's a Bad Idea) appeared first on Wicked Baron's Emporium.