15 Top Websites to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing



15 Top Websites to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

Finding an online library stocked with pictures that are of high quality and available to use for free can be a daunting task. All the effort you are putting in selecting your search words seem to only yield images that either vaguely agree with your needs or are completely irrelevant. This can waste a lot of your time and get you really worked up.

If your job involves finding free images online on a regular basis, then having a free image directory would be a smart move. A free image directory allows you to easily and quickly access pictures that are not just relevant and top quality but add more meaning, taste, and eloquence to your message. And saves you hours.

Let me get you started on creating your own free image library. Below is a fairly exhaustive list of the best websites to find free images online:

1.  Picjumbo.com

First, there are no restrictions – you do not need to credit the author when using images from this website. New photos are uploaded every day and organized accordingly. They have amazing pictures with a wide range e.g. roads, food, fashion, wedding, technology, business etc.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

2.  Pexels.com

This is one of the largest free image directories. It has collated photos from many other free image sites and put them under one roof. So if you are in a rush, then this will work very well with you.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

3. Unsplash.com

A small one-column site that was built on tumblr. They post 10 fantastic images every ten days. No need to be registered. You can subscribe to receive photos directly into your inbox.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

4. Flickr.com

Besides the large collection of high quality photos, Flickr gives you the option of sharing and saving your photos. With it, you can organize all of your pictures and not worry about losing them. You can also edit your pictures. One thing that is encouraged when using someone else’s photo is to ensure that you link your picture to them. You will need to register as a member to be able to gain access to the variety of options offer by Flickr.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

5. FreePhotosBank.com

Easy to download photos. They focus more on abstract shots, architecture, landscape, nature, backgrounds and patterns etc. You do not any to create an account.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

6. FreeMediaGoo.com

You can credit them if you want to but you don’t need to. They upload high quality illustrations of backgrounds and many other photos. They have plenty of visual mediums you can choose from. Images have no restrictions.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

7. Creative Commons Search

is an online tool that allows you to find resources you can share, use, modify of remix. You can use find things to use for commercial purposes as well. No registration required. It is a convenient search engine. However you need to find out about the copyright terms of the image before using it.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

8. Picsearch.com

It is great it doesn’t offer a clear division for royalty-free CC images. It is a useful search engine especially for those who don’t know exactly what they are looking for. Picsearch will help your search by indexing pages for you.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

9. Pixabay

Here, photos are uploaded by users as in Creative Commons. You can search and sort your pictures. There are no image restrictions. It offers a range of high quality photos and thought to be one of the best internal search engine sites.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

10. Blogphoto.tv

Plenty of free images. The disadvantage is the loose image restriction that comes with it. In Blog photo, there is more than just getting you the photo you need. They offer resources such as templates, articles planners etc. to help you grow your digital footprint. In addition to that, there are articles published weekly as well as live interactive shows with media mogul to make you outstanding at whatever it is you are trying to achieve.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

11. Gratisography.com

For high quality photos with no image restrictions whatsoever, then this is the resource for you. These are high-resolution pictures taken by Ryan McGuire . You can find them on one page, not group. Just scroll down as the page loads and pick the one want. You are not required to credit the owner.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

12. Sxc.hu

There is a variety of image restrictions. However, they offer a massive selection of images covering a wide spectrum including abstract, events, architecture etc. You can share photos whenever and however you want. Sorting can sometimes be a little difficult. The good news is that the search tool is straightforward and getting what you need is simple and fast.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

13. DeviantArt

With over thirty million registered users, Deviant Art is the leading community in free image online communities. The work of photographers is under Creative Commons. You can use their images as long as you give them credit. There is wealth of high-resolution photos.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

14. Photodune

They offer the best picture at reasonably low price. They have a collection of over four million.  If you want your website to stand out then use Photodune.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

15. GettyImages

This is probably the largest place to find free images online. In one month they upload up to thirty five million photos. They have a wonderful collection of people and capture different activities so perfectly. If you want to get the picture, click on the icon on it and then paste the code onto your target page.

The Top 15 Places to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

These tools come in very handy whenever you are in need of a photo. You no longer have to hassle with Google trying a dozen keywords to find just one. These websites allow you access to a variety of relevant and high-resolution pictures.

Guest Author: Amy Cowen manages writers at Aussiessay.com. She is an essay writing professional with over 5 years experience. Also she is very enthusiastic about all marketing and social media tools that can help a lot in everyday life and work.

Listen to this post as a podcast

Podcasting provided by Odovox.com

The post 15 Top Websites to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing appeared first on Jeffbullas’s Blog.

 

Source: 15 Top Websites to Find Free Images For Your Content Marketing

How to Create Influencer Roundups: Tips and Tools for Bloggers



social media how toDo you want to improve your influencer outreach for roundup posts?

Wondering how to come up with a unique topic idea?

In this article, you’ll discover a four-step plan to create effective influencer roundups.

How to Create Influencer Roundups: Tips and Tools for Bloggers by Ann Smarty on Social Media Examiner.

How to Create Influencer Roundups: Tips and Tools for Bloggers by Ann Smarty on Social Media Examiner.

#1: Plan a Timeline for Your Roundup

Timing is everything. If you plan your influencer-driven content in time for the upcoming holidays, you’ll get a number of benefits including:

  • A better response from influencers: When the timing is right, people will be more willing to talk about the upcoming event or holiday.
  • More shares: People will search for new ideas for upcoming holidays, so catch their attention by giving them insights from multiple experts.
  • Easier planning: If holidays and events direct your content roadmap, you’ll be more in control of your future content plans.

The first step is to plan how you’ll integrate your influencer-powered content into your overall content roadmap. Here’s an example of my own content roadmap that includes big national holidays, professional days, weird/funny holidays, and annual industry events.

content calendar example

Notice how upcoming events inspire and direct my project ideas.

content calendar example

You can download a sample content marketing roadmap here.

To produce your influencer-powered content, you need to plan it months in advance. Start with the outreach and allocate enough time to put the roundup together, create visuals, and so on.

To determine the actual date when the piece needs to go live, use a tool like Google Trends. For instance, if you search for “pubcon” using the 2016 filter, you can see that interest spiked about a week prior to the event (which was held October 10-13, 2016), so that would be a good day to push the Publish button.

Google Trends keyword research

Here’s how you might time your content creation process, based on the above example:

August 1: Come up with the question to ask influencers. What will be the main topic of your roundup? (See the next section for tips on choosing a topic.)

August 7: Start working on influencer lists (using previous connections and finding new ones) and reach out with your question.

content plan for roundup blog post

September 1: Send customized follow-ups rather than automated ones (people receive too many of them). Follow up on Twitter, Facebook (if you’re connected on Facebook), or seek common connections who can follow up for you.

September 15: Put the article together and break it into logical sections/subtopics based on the contributions. Find the most powerful short quote in each answer to highlight it as a tweetable quote, which will tag each influencer in the tweets.

September 20: Design visual quotes and charts and come up with original secondary content assets (infographics, SlideShare decks, etc.). Here are a few useful visualization plugins to make this step easier.

October 3: Add any final touches (in case some influencers took longer to send in their contributions) and publish the piece. Send an email to all of the participating influencers (with their visual quotes attached; a different one for each contributor), letting them know about the published piece and encouraging them to share it on social media and comment.

content plan for roundup blog post

#2: Use Research to Identify a Popular Question

Your content roadmap will inform your topic. As with the earlier scenario, you might select a Thanksgiving-related topic and time it to the conference.

For an influencer roundup to be successful, you need to come up with a good core question that all of the contributors will be invited to elaborate on. This is where keyword research comes into play.

For instance, if you want to focus your roundup on just Thanksgiving, do keyword research around that topic in an effort to come up with an idea that meets the following criteria:

  • It’s interesting enough for influencers to want to provide a lot of input.
  • It hasn’t been covered a lot in the industry. You don’t want your article to be lost in the pile of other content that’s being published regularly.
  • It’s in high demand (many people are looking for the answer), making it more likely to trigger a lot of shares and references.

Serpstat is a great tool to perform keyword research for your influencer roundup. You get the biggest selection of key phrases and it lets you filter and play with the results to find something interesting. It’s available in both free and paid plans, which start at $19/month.

Serpstat keyword research

For a roundup, it’s helpful to enable the filter that forces queries triggering the People Also Ask box. You’ll get great insights into questions people ask on a particular topic.

Serpstat keyword research apply filters

The image below shows Google’s People Also Ask box in action. You can see popular questions on many specific topics, which will help spark ideas for an interesting topic for your roundup.

Google search People Also Ask

When you brainstorm your core question, keep these best practices in mind:

  • Choose a question that can’t be answered with a yes or no. Also avoid questions that limit the contributors; your aim is to get detailed responses.
  • The question should encourage influencers to share their personal experience because that’s the power of user-driven roundups: the collective sharing of authentic personal tips, case studies, stories, and more.
  • Your question may include some specific recommendations (like “Please add your favorite tools, screenshots, etc.”).
  • Look at what other bloggers in your niche do. For example, First Site Guide regularly publishes interviews with famous bloggers and do a great job picking intereating engaging questions

#3: Turn Collected Insights Into an Article

After you’ve contacted your influencers and collected their responses, you’re ready to create your article.

Choose a Format for the Content

While a Q&A format is the easiest way to put your article together, it’s not the best way for readers to digest the information. Many roundups contain a lot of valuable insights, but they’re lost in an unreadable format and fail to trigger an action. As a result, readers walk away with no useful information and no plan to implement.

So instead of dividing your roundup into illogical subsections based on your influencers’ contributions, come up with useful headings and combine several answers under one subheading.

For example, this roundup is easy to read because the information is organized in problem/solution sections rather than simply as a list of contributions from experts.

expert roundup post example

Offer Additional Ways to Consume the Content

Repurposing tactics can help you create diverse secondary assets to beautify your article and offer readers multiple options for consuming your content. Here are some examples:

  • Put the whole roundup into audio and create a podcast episode.
  • Turn those highlighted tweetable quotes into graphics and create a beautiful SlideShare deck with a tool like Haiku Deck. This SlideShare from TopRank Marketing is a great illustration of how to turn expert roundups into slideshows using clickable tweetable quotes on every slide:

as-slideshare-influencer-quotes

  • Turn your interview into a PDF and create a mobile-friendly flipbook using a tool like Flipsnack. Flipbooks create a better mobile reading experience because viewers can zoom in and swipe through pages easier. Here’s a PDF white paper that was turned into a flipbook with Flipsnack:

Flipsnack PDF example

Make the Most of Promoting Each Contributor

Your most valuable assets are your influential contributors. Do your best to bring them back to your page again and again. My secret is scheduling dozens of tweets as far as one year ahead, tagging each contributor. This way they will come back to that interview again and again, with each tweet they see in their Twitter notifications.

I use Drumup to effectively schedule recurring tweets because it gives a very convenient dashboard allowing me to use one-click schedule feature and add content to libraries for easier re-purposing in the future:

drumup schedule

Drumup allows to schedule lots of tweets with one click of a mouse

#4: Use Software to Develop Lasting Relationships With Influencers

One of the biggest mistakes that marketers make is focusing on the short-term benefits of a roundup. Influencer-driven content is well-known for its ability to bring a solid spike in traffic and social media shares. However, it’s not the biggest benefit of the tactic.

What really matter are the long-lasting relationships with the participating influencers. David Bain published a book based on the answers he collected from over 100 niche experts. He noted that “…many of those who took part have said to me, if I ever need anything, just ask. You can’t buy those sorts of connections.”

When you work on influencer-powered content, focus on the relationships you develop with industry influencers who will gladly help spread the word, participate in launching a new project, or contribute any time you need their help in the future. Influencer connections are among your biggest brand assets so they need to be treated as such.

To better organize your influencer outreach, you can use sales CRM software like Salesmate. Salesmate lets you record all of the contact details and notes for each influencer on a project basis, and then sync the data among the projects and team members.

Salesmate contact card

This information will give you a clear picture of:

  • People you or your team collaborate with on a regular basis
  • Which project/topic has worked best for particular influencers
  • Which outreach email has performed best in terms of getting new influencers on board or engaging them in promoting the piece

With the pipeline view, you can also set steps and incentives for your team to reach out to influencers. Salesmate offers a free 15-day trial to test drive the product. After that, you can get continued access for $12/month per user (when billed annually).

Salesmate pipeline

Conclusion

Influencer-driven roundups are a widely used marketing tactic but they’re so prevalent now that they’re slowly losing their vibe. Influencers are overwhelmed with requests to contribute and readers are getting tired of seeing yet another expert roundup.

Collaborating with industry influencers on creating content can still be effective if you take the time to do it well. You need to improve your influencer outreach process, time your roundup properly, come up with a unique topic idea, and brainstorm an original format.

What do you think? Do you do roundup posts? Which of the tactics above will you use? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Discover a four-step plan to create effective influencer roundups and improve your influencer outreach.

 

Source: How to Create Influencer Roundups: Tips and Tools for Bloggers

7 Metrics to Audit Your YouTube Channel



social media how toDo you know if you’re reaching your goals on YouTube?

Wondering how to analyze the effectiveness of your YouTube content and strategy?

In this article, you’ll discover seven metrics to watch when assessing the performance of your YouTube channel.

7 Metrics to Audit Your YouTube Channel by Jeremy Vest on Social Media Examiner.

7 Metrics to Audit Your YouTube Channel by Jeremy Vest on Social Media Examiner.

 

What Is a YouTube Audit?

Audits may not be the sexiest thing on the planet, but all of the optimization in the world would be for nothing if you can’t measure the success of your YouTube presence. Most people think it’s enough to just mentally keep track of things like subscribers and views, but the real masters of the platform perform deep audits on a regular basis.

Deep audits have a way of revealing hidden tricks and details in the YouTube algorithm. You never know when you might find a pattern you can emulate in the future to give your YouTube channel an edge. Audits also give you an opportunity to step back from your content and take an objective look at what’s working and what’s not.

YouTube analytics

To begin, start tracking your YouTube metrics over time. After you collect enough data to detect trends, see if you can find patterns that point out why your metrics went up or down. Over time, you can adjust your channel optimization and content to grow your YouTube channel.

#1: Determine How Many Subscribers Are Watching Your Content

Whether you have a million subscribers or a hundred, you need to know what content interests and engages them. Most people are laser-focused on getting more subscribers, but what’s the point of growing your subscriber base if people aren’t watching and engaging with your content?

Your number-one priority should be creating content that connects with your audience and provides value to them. The subscribers-to-views ratio can help you determine how well your content meets that goal.

This ratio also boosts your channel from an algorithmic perspective. Videos that receive 20% of their subscriber count in views in the first 48 hours will continue to perform well throughout their lifetime (which is also a good reason to post on a regular schedule).

To find the subscribers-to-views ratio in Creator Studio, go into the dashboard and make sure it’s set for the last 28 days. Then compare the number of views against the number of subscribers to calculate the subscribers-to-views ratio. This ratio will give you an idea of how active your subscriber base is.

YouTube analytics calculate subscribers to views ratio

Tip: You can also calculate these ratios as percentages. If you’re not a math whiz, the free online percentage calculator can help.

percentage calculator

#2: Find Out What Content Generates the Most Engagement

Now that you have an idea of how many subscribers are actually watching your videos, you can analyze engagement, which is the number of likes, dislikes, comments, and shares.

Engagement factors into the algorithm because YouTube is all about what interests people. If a video generates a lot of comments, that’s probably because people find it intriguing. Frequently shared videos are clearly content that people enjoy and want to spread around. Likes and dislikes indicate emotional engagement because, if nobody cares, nobody clicks either one.

If you can get a sense of what topics, styles, and delivery generate engagement, you can repeat those factors to get more engagement in the future and perform better in the algorithm.

To determine the views-to-engagement ratio, select Overview under the Analytics tab in Creator Studio.

YouTube analytics overview

Add up the stats for likes, dislikes, shares, and comments. Then calculate the ratio of engagements to views.

YouTube analytics calculate engagement to views ratio

You can also calculate this percentage for individual videos to see which ones spur the most engagement. Based on your findings, you might create videos on similar topics for increased engagement in the future.

#3: Measure Organic Views

Organic views are video views that weren’t generated via paid advertising. If you haven’t run any paid advertising on YouTube, this metric is simple to figure out: all of your views are organic views.

But if you’re a brand or small business or even an ambitious YouTuber who has run some pre-roll ads or other advertising to promote a video, it’s important to figure out how much of your traffic has come from organic views. This metric indicates how well your channel is performing in the algorithm.

If you’ve done some advertising, seeing your organic views is still pretty easy. In Creator Studio, select Traffic Sources under Analytics.

YouTube analytics traffic sources

Next, select the Traffic Source checkbox (so that all sources are selected) and then clear the YouTube Advertising checkbox. What’s left over is your organic view count.

YouTube analytics traffic organic

#4: Track How Long Viewers Are Watching Your Videos

Watch time is among the most important metrics for your YouTube videos. The algorithm looks at watch time to gauge how well your videos sustain people’s interest. Hopefully, the watch time of your videos is increasing. Of course, you have to know your watch time to improve it.

To find this metric in Creator Studio, go to Analytics > Watch Time Reports > Watch Time.

YouTube analytics watch time

You’ll then see a graph that shows the general trend in watch time. If watch time is going down, you might change your content to get people to stick around to the end of your videos or experiment with longer videos.

Select other options to see different charts as well.

YouTube analytics watch time

#5: Find Out How Often Your Videos Are Suggested

Getting your videos suggested next to videos with large view counts from large YouTube channels is a way to accelerate the growth of your channel. As part of your auditing process, keep track of which videos in your topic area are often suggested so you can try to match their success.

You also need to keep track of how often your videos appear as suggested videos. In Creator Studio, go to Analytics > Traffic Sources > Suggested Videos.

YouTube analytics traffic suggested videos

#6: Discover Which Videos Have the Highest Audience Retention

We’ve already talked about the importance of watch time, but part of that is the percentage of the videos that your audience watches before they click away. This metric is known as audience retention.

To find it in Creator Studio, go to Analytics > Watch Time Reports > Audience Retention. Below the graph that shows your overall channel’s audience retention, you can see the audience retention for individual videos including the percentage watched for each video on the far right.

YouTube analytics retention

By studying the videos that attain the highest audience retention, you can gauge which topics and styles perform best and repeat those in the future.

#7: Measure Views via YouTube Search

YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world. Especially in the early stages of your YouTube channel (when you don’t have an audience to provide a lot of the metrics that boost the video in the algorithm), search traffic is really all you can get. So it’s important to optimize your YouTube channel for search and track the effectiveness of your efforts in your audits.

In Creator Studio, go to Analytics > Traffic Sources > YouTube Search.

YouTube analytics traffic from youtube search

If a video performs especially well in search, the algorithm may rank your channel highly for that search term so creating more videos on that subject might be a good idea.

Conclusion

When you audit YouTube channel metrics on a regular basis, some ideas for improving performance will reveal themselves immediately. Other metrics and trends may take some time to interpret. And sometimes you may find things you were never looking for. You never know until you look.

What do you think? How have you tracked the performance of your YouTube channel so far? Do you plan to change how you measure the success of your channel going forward? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

Discover seven metrics to watch when assessing the performance of your YouTube channel.

 

Source: 7 Metrics to Audit Your YouTube Channel

Facebook Marketing: Why It Is Time to Rethink Everything



Do you use Facebook to market your business?

Wondering how marketing on Facebook is evolving?

To explore how marketers should adjust to Facebook’s recent and future changes, I interview Mari Smith.

More About This Show

The Social Media Marketing podcast is an on-demand talk radio show from Social Media Examiner. It’s designed to help busy marketers and business owners discover what works with social media marketing.

In this episode, I interview Mari Smith, the world’s leading Facebook marketing expert. She co-authored Facebook Marketing: An Hour a Day and is author of The New Relationship Marketing.

Mari shares why it’s time for marketers to rethink how they use Facebook.

You’ll discover where Mari believes Facebook is headed.

Facebook Marketing: Why It Is Time to Rethink Everything featuring insights from Guest on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

Facebook Marketing: Why It Is Time to Rethink Everything featuring insights from Mari Smith on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

Share your feedback, read the show notes, and get the links mentioned in this episode below.

Listen Now

You can also subscribe via iTunes, RSS, or Stitcher.

Here are some of the things you’ll discover in this show:

Facebook Marketing

The Facebook Algorithm

Mari explains that the Facebook algorithm pre-filters content that users see in their news feeds. The algorithm manages the vast amount of content posted to Facebook and thus helps advertisers, while hopefully showing Facebook users the most relevant content among the thousands of posts they could see.

Users can have as many as 5,000 friends, join up to 6,000 groups, and follow up to 5,000 pages. With posts coming from all of these sources, users might see as many as 15,000 posts. Mari says that the Facebook algorithm narrows down what users actually see to about 1,500 posts, and from that pool of content, narrows what users might see even further to about 300 posts.

Mari says the algorithm is complex with about 100,000 weights, of which only about a half-dozen are known. For instance, Facebook favors stories from users’ friends, video content, and so on. Also, when the algorithm came out in 2008, along with Facebook business pages, it made the news feed non-chronological.

The Facebook algorithm is complex.

The Facebook algorithm narrows content to show users the stories most relevant to them.

Mari explains that the algorithm exists because Facebook needs to keep users coming back and also offer value to advertisers. Each day, the average user logs on about 14 times (more for marketers), and is on Facebook an average of 50 cumulative minutes. That creates a huge captive audience, which is a massive amount of potential to offer advertisers.

To maintain that value, the algorithm encourages user engagement. Mari notices how she loves keeping up with her friends and community via Facebook and sees an advertisement about every third post. The better the targeted ad, the more likely she is to respond.

Mari also notes that by encouraging user engagement, the algorithm also encourages users to share information with Facebook. This information helps Facebook keep the users and advertisers happy.

I ask what marketers should do so users see more of their content in the news feed. Mari recommends not only sharing video, but also slightly increasing the length of videos. For uploaded videos, Mari has discovered a minimum of 90 seconds makes content more visible. For a live video, Mari recommends broadcasting for at least 5 minutes.

Mari says Facebook favors slightly longer video because it enables Facebook to insert mid-roll ads. These ads break in and run for about 20 seconds. At the moment, mid-roll ads are in beta and you have to sign up before they’ll appear in your video. Also, Mari says these ads appear only if you have at least 2,000 followers of your profile or page and 300 concurrent viewers.

Mari explains that the decline in Facebook user posts and the algorithm’s preference for camera-based content are related. Facebook is moving more into the camera mode because over the past three or four years, users have been sharing fewer status updates. Typing a post is harder than snapping a picture and adding sticker or filter.

The decline in Facebook user posts and the algorithm's preference for camera-based content are related.

Users have been sharing fewer status updates in favor of image and video updates.

Mari stresses that real-time signals are also important to the visibility of your content. Posts that attract likes, comments, and shares have better visibility because this activity shows the post is relevant, timely, or newsworthy. Mari says the Facebook algorithm also identifies whether a page tries to game the system by asking for likes, comments, and shares. The algorithm gives posts that don’t do that greater visibility.

Listen to the show to hear Mari discuss the diminishing amount of ad space in the news feed.

Organic Reach

A few years ago (around 2013 or 2014), Mari saw predictions that Facebook organic reach would eventually hit zero. Mari doesn’t think that will ever be the case because pages with raving followers who turn on post notifications will always have some organic reach. However, organic reach is dwindling and marketers need a strategy for using what little organic reach they get to maximize a post’s visibility and their ad budget.

To increase a post’s chances of getting organic reach, Mari encourages marketers to make sure their post is relevant to their audience. In other words, the post should be newsworthy, entertaining, or educational. Mari calls her approach to creating relevant posts the Mari Method, and she explains how it works in an article she recently wrote for Social Media Examiner.

Excerpt from How to Maximize Your Facebook Reach by Mari Smith on Social Media Examiner.

Excerpt from How to Maximize Your Facebook Reach by Mari Smith on Social Media Examiner.

After a post generates some organic reach, Mari says you can build on it with advertising. One strategy is to wait up to 24 hours to get some organic reach (a few likes, comments, and shares), and then amplify the post incrementally with your ad budget.

For instance, you can get more out of your $300 marketing budget by splitting it up. Don’t use your entire budget to boost a post to people who like your page. Mari says Facebook’s advertising algorithms don’t favor advertisers who simply hit the Boost button relentlessly. This approach won’t help you achieve the best ROI on your ads.

Instead, Mari recommends using Ads Manager and testing and segmenting your ads. Also, use custom audiences and ideally, the Facebook Pixel.

As you drip-feed your budget, your organic reach goes up, Mari continues. Also, because paid content doesn’t have the date on it (just the Sponsored label), you can continue to get mileage out of content that your audience loves.

Listen to the show to discover what new long-awaited feature is coming to Facebook pages.

Where Mari Sees Facebook Heading

Facebook is heading in the direction of digital-streaming television.

Mari mentions a slide she likes to include in her talks, showing the percentage of digital down-streaming traffic. Netflix has about 35%, YouTube around 17%, and Amazon 4% (which doubled from 2015 to 2016). Mari says Facebook probably won’t be competitive with these streaming TV services for one to three years, but is absolutely on a mission to pursue the billions of dollars in television advertising.

To that end, Facebook is investing in all manner of licensed original episodic content (episodes of 3 to 30 minutes). Mari adds that Facebook hopes to capitalize on the phenomenon of binge-watching.

Mari loves the video tab with the little bubbles on top and a feed that’s exclusively video. The bubbles show the pages or people who are live now or have recently uploaded a video. A separate algorithm manages this video feed, which you can find by tapping the video icon that looks like a Play button. Mari says this feed is basically Facebook television.

The bubbles on top of the mobile video feed show recent recorded uploads and live broadcasts.

The Facebook video feed shows who’s most recently posted a video or broadcast (or is broadcasting) live.

In March 2017, Facebook released the ability to go live on desktop on your profile or page. Many people have been able to do that for some time using third-party tools, but this feature is through the native Facebook platform.

Mari says Facebook is also going after the gaming community because you can stream your games via desktop. Gamers are a whole segment of Facebook users, and Facebook may use its investments in virtual reality to appeal to them.

Listen to the show to hear more of our thoughts on Facebook’s potential features with artificial intelligence and virtual and augmented reality.

Instagram and Facebook Messenger

Mari says the rapid release of new features on Instagram and Messenger are clearly part of Facebook’s mission to attract Generation Z (basically anyone 21 and under). To give a sense of where Facebook and Instagram are headed, Mari mentions China’s WeChat, which she says is light years ahead of the Western world.

WeChat has been called a Swiss army knife, because it’s What’sApp, Facebook, Skype, Uber, Amazon, Instagram, Venmo, Tinder, and more. Last year, The New York Times put out a video that gives a glimpse into what WeChat can do, such as booking services or heat maps that show how busy a destination is.

Because you can do everything in WeChat, Mari says it’s an advertiser’s dream.

Mari has also heard from reliable sources that Facebook and Instagram are only 1% done. Imagine the enormity of the future releases coming down the line. Facebook wants to keep users coming back day after day by giving them positive experiences so they share and connect with friends more often.

For example, Facebook recently released a new camera for the Facebook mobile app. If you swipe right, instead of seeing everybody in your favorites, you see a camera. The camera is now baked into the native Facebook app and has filters, stickers, and masks.

Listen to the show to hear more about new and emerging features that might change the way users engage with Facebook and Instagram content.

Facebook Video and the Future

TechCrunch wrote an article that came out last year that says, the Information Age is over. Welcome to the Experience Age. The Experience Age is about one tap, one click, snap, take a photo, take a video, share a quick story. It’s “Hey friends, this is what I’m doing right now.”

Everyone thinks Snapchat is about secrecy. Mari disagrees. It forces you not to think about accumulating a chronological record of what you’ve been up to over the years of your life. It’s an experience thing.

Snapchat is about creating an experience of your life.

Snapchat forces you not to think about accumulating a chronological record of what you’ve been up to.

I ask Mari what marketers should do in this world of constant change. Mari responds by sharing a quote from a Forbes article, “The brands that fail to incorporate visuals and videos will be left by the wayside.” It’s about human interaction, emotions, relating to people. Scott Monty says, Facebook Live is like a rebirth of live television. Back in the day, TV was always live. Now, TV is new again and incorporates interpersonal connection.

Mari believes marketers would do well to innovate, be early adopters, and really capitalize on video, whether it’s recorded or live. Although she knows how busy marketers are and how keeping up with the constant innovation is challenging, Mari recommends that marketers make time to do regular shows.

In those video shows, she encourages square videos. Facebook just brought out a study that people gaze five times longer at video than static content on Facebook and Instagram. Square video takes up more screen space, has a higher view completion rate, and gets more engagement. Although you can no longer do Facebook Live as a square video, you can upload square videos. For Live video, portrait is more mobile-friendly than landscape, so choose portrait to increase views and engagement.

Videos, especially square videos, perform better in the Facebook news feed.

In the news feed, people spend more time looking at video than static content.

Mari says creating video can help drive people to your articles, especially if you’re doing an article that references video. For instance, she made a video pulling out some of the highlights from her Mari Method article to drive people to read it.

Also, when Mari was in Ads Manager looking to promote a video post, up popped advice from Facebook saying, “Recent studies have proved that creating short videos of 15 seconds or less can significantly drive up video completions.” So for ads, instead of a 5-minute Facebook Live video or a 90-second recorded video, you’ll see more video completions by creating a 15-second video that’s visually engaging.

I ask Mari what skills marketers need to focus on as Facebook continues changing rapidly. In videos, Mari recommends focusing on your storytelling skills. Make that connection with your audience through regular or live video.

Mari also recommends extra touches that increase video views and consumption. Pick a good thumbnail and add captions. If your video is 5 minutes or shorter, a caption generator does it automatically. For longer videos, you can use a transcription service.

Then Mari recommends having an ad budget so you can include a call to action in your videos. People will then be able to click your call to action and go to your website or open Messenger for one-to-one communication. You can also use bots to start the sales process and warm the lead. You can’t simply focus on more traffic. Mari says marketers need to work on tying the whole process together.

Listen to the show to hear my take on how videos are driving this fast-changing industry.

Discovery of the Week

With Markticle, you can bookmark online articles and mark your progress so you can pick up right where you left off. With the notes and sharing features, you can also share your comments about specific content in the article through Facebook or Twitter.

Markticle is a Chrome extemsion and Android app for bookmarking and highlighting content.

Bookmark and highlight articles with Markticle.

Markticle is available as a free Chrome extension or Android app. After you install Markticle, open the article you want to read, select the text where you’re leaving off, and press M to mark that text. You then have the option to leave a note or share the article.

Listen to the show to learn more and let us know how Markticle works for you.

Listen to the show!
http://traffic.libsyn.com/socialmediamarketing/SocialMediaMarketing-247-17-04-28.mp3

Key takeaways mentioned in this episode:

Social Media Marketing Podcast w/ Michael Stelzner

Ways to subscribe to the Social Media Marketing podcast:

What do you think? What are your thoughts on Facebook marketing? Please leave your comments below.

Facebook Marketing: Why It Is Time to Rethink Everything featuring insights from Guest on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

Facebook Marketing: Why It Is Time to Rethink Everything featuring insights from Mari Smith on the Social Media Marketing Podcast.

 

Source: Facebook Marketing: Why It Is Time to Rethink Everything

6 Ideas to Borrow from Creative Social Media Carousel Ads



Are you considering Carousel Ads? Below is a great article that share some thoughts you might find interesting!

If one picture is worth a thousand words, a carousel ad is worth 10 times that. Literally. According to data found by Kinetic Social, advertisers using carousel ads see a click-through rate 10 times higher than other ad formats on Facebook and Instagram.

Carousel ads allow advertisers to use up to 10 photos or videos within a single paid post on Facebook or Instagram. Each image has its own link, which means more space for advertisers to stretch their creativity.

On Facebook, carousel ads drive 30 to 50 percent lower cost-per-conversion and 20 to 30 percent lower cost-per-click than ads with a single image.

Want to test your own carousel ad campaign? Read on for some examples and ideas to get you started.

6 examples of creative carousel ads

1. Airbnb

Airbnb repurposed one of their slideshow posts on Instagram as a creative carousel ad promoting their new Experiences offerings.

The post is a beautiful panorama photograph of a long paddle boat, divided into three shots. The text accompanying the post highlights the hosts and how they use Airbnb to give guests a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Arriving in a city—or living in one—can feel overwhelming and isolating. Local hosts Nicki and Pamela bring groups of travelers and natives together for three days of peaceful adventure. You’ll bond over a beach bonfire, explore Muir Woods on a meditative hike, and paddle the bay in unison with your new friends. Don’t be surprised to find yourself feeling calm and connected and right at home. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Click the link in our bio for other outdoor San Francisco experiences, from low-tide sand art to camping on Angel Island. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #AirbnbExperience

A post shared by Airbnb (@airbnb) on Apr 6, 2017 at 10:26am PDT

 

With this carousel ad, Airbnb shines a spotlight on their valuable hosts while showing users the unique benefits of traveling with Airbnb. The post’s call to action includes a link to other San Francisco experiences available through Airbnb.

Like Airbnb, your brand can use a panorama format with carousel ads to:

Show off your new office space
Share an event experience
Give a behind-the-scenes look at your team with a series of team photos
Showcase long product shots such as a tablescape, or a line-up of different products
Share a lifestyle image featuring your product, for example, a scenic mountainscape with your brand’s hiking boots visible in one of the frames

2. Tanishq

Tanishq, one of India’s most prominent jewelry brands used carousel ads to boost sales and reach a broader Facebook audience. Tanishq has both online and brick and mortar stores and they wanted to use Facebook to marry these two spaces for their customers.

For their one-month campaign, Tanishq showcased stunning close-ups of their products and offered special discounts through carousel ads on Facebook. They also included a “Shop Now” button to further entice their audience to take action.

With their carousel ad campaign, Tanishq saw a 30 percent increase in in-store sales and a three times higher return on their ad spend.

You can entice your customers with visuals like Tanishq by:

Following Facebook’s recommended image size of 1080 x 1080 pixels
Using product imagery to target returning or high-intent customers
Using lifestyle imagery to target new customers
Using images related to one theme for each ad sequence
Making sure that every image within the carousel format has a similar visual style created through lighting, colors, and composition
Demonstrating your brand identity throughout images with a watermark or recognizable branding, colors, and tone

3. Wondermall

Wondermall is a mobile app that gives shoppers access to over 100 stores and 1 million products. As a fashion-focused platform, Instagram was a great fit for Wondermall’s carousel ad campaign.

Wondermall used highly-targeted carousel ads to reach American women aged 18 to 44 who have summer-based keyword interests (sunglasses, sandals, swimsuits, etc.) and like relevant Pages.

To appeal to their audience interests, Wondermall used carousel ads to feature curated summer goods available through the app. The ads featured a call to “Download on the App Store” and a “Shop Now” button.  With a goal of increased mobile app downloads, Wondermall partnered with Facebook Marketing Partner Taptica to launch and measure the campaign.

The nine-week campaign drove 36 percent conversion rates, 28 percent of shoppers putting items in their carts, and 8.5 percent completing the purchase.

Wondermall got to know their customer before they tried selling to them, a tactic you can apply to your own carousel ad strategy. Like other Facebook and Instagram ad formats, you can reach your target demographic with:

Location targeting, including a radius around your business
Age targeting
Gender targeting
Interests targeting (based on what they’ve Liked)
Behaviors targeting (based on what they’ve previously purchased, device usage, what they click, etc.)
Connection targeting (to reach people based on if they Like your business Page, app, or event)

4. Fido

Fido is a Canadian mobile service provider aimed at young millennials. To promote the introduction of new streaming and mobile services, Fido launched their #GetCurious carousel ad campaign on Instagram.

As Instagram explains, Fido’s “#GetCurious campaign had a handmade, whimsical quality that was consistent throughout their ads.”

Using a specific hashtag for the campaign, the brand was able to easily monitor post engagement and encourage their followers to submit their own #GetCurious posts.

With the campaign, Fido reached over 2 million people, saw a 21-point lift in brand awareness and a 19-point life in ad recall. Their target demographic accounted for 53 percent of their impressions, and they saw a four-point boost in brand recommendation across every demographic.

Use the power of hashtags like Fido did, by:

Gathering user-generated content
Creating a carousel ad highlighting customers’ grouped by features such as geographic location
Telling a story through the images contributed by your audience
Grouping user-submitted images by color (or your brand colors) for a fun aesthetic effect

5. Kit and Ace

Technical apparel brand Kit and Ace used Facebook’s carousel ad format to introduce a new model of their cashmere pants.

The ads featured numerous images of the garment in different scenarios. Each image was from a different angle and highlighted one specific feature of the pants. As Facebook says, “The more information you give customers right away, the more reasons they’ll have to click.”

In addition to the focus on features, Kit and Ace incorporated images of the pants on models. This allowed audience members to imagine how they would look in the pants and how the pants could fit into their lives.

6. Target

Target’s Style department used carousel ads to help launch their new Marimekko home and lifestyle collection. The ads show a model moving through the different “rooms” created with the multiple frames of the carousel ad.

In each room, she is wearing a different outfit from the collection, and interacting with the household products. The ads featured colorful homewares and clothes with buttons encouraging customers to click directly through to the product purchase page.

This immersive approach is not only creative and engaging, but helps the audience imagine themselves using the featured products.

As a business creating your own carousel ads, think about creative ways you can use the format to your benefit. A seamless movement between frames such as Target’s might be an option to consider for your future campaigns.

Carousel ads are a great way to showcase your brand’s best products and features.

Easily schedule Instagram content and manage all of your social media accounts with Hootsuite.

Learn More

The post 6 Ideas to Borrow from Creative Social Media Carousel Ads appeared first on Hootsuite Social Media Management.

 

Source: 6 Ideas to Borrow from Creative Social Media Carousel Ads

A Practical Guide On How to Get Out of Gmail’s Promotions Tab



A Practical Guide On How to Get Out of Gmail’s Promotions Tab

Since Google rolled out its tabbed interface, many marketers started seeing a significant decrease in their email open rate.

The introduction of an automatic filtering system for emails into Primary, Social and Promotions categories was the culprit in most cases.

Sure, it’s a great way to organize your inbox. But sometimes valuable content is caught by that filter and never given the full attention it deserves.

If you’re someone who sends email newsletters out to your subscriber list, you may not even know that your emails are being filtered into your recipients’ Promotions tab.

But the below stats show that it’s time to start paying attention.

Why does it matter if you end up in Gmail’s promotions tab?

According to Return Path, a whopping 19.9% of Gmail users never check mail under the Promotions tab. Yet the Promotions tab placement rate is fairly high at 84.5%, and the read rate is only 19.2%.

So how do you shift your placement in Gmail from Promotions to Primary to increase engagement, opens and ROI? Do you know what elements make Gmail categorize your emails as Promotions?

In this blog post, I’ll share a case study and actionable tips to help you fine-tune your emails and send them to Gmail’s Primary tab instead of Promotions.

My case study is performed from a Gmail user’s perspective. I found this email in my Promotions tab and thought it was a good example for our purposes.

I used the GlockApps spam testing tool to test it, which provides the seed list of dozens of test email addresses including Gmail email accounts. It’s a great alternative to Return Path’s Inbox Monitor if you need a fast way to test your inbox placement.

Step #1 – Reduce the number of links

One of the most common reasons why emails are filtered down to the Promotions tab is that they contain a high number of images and links.

In the email I tested above for our case study, there is little text and lots of links including linked images and icons with links to social profiles.

I began my test by removing the “View in browser” header with its links, and images with links to social profiles.

I re-tested the email and got this:

The email still landed in Promotions.

Interesting, I thought to myself. I’ll try again.

Step #2 – Remove images

I hypothesized that the problem might be an image-to-text ratio. I deleted the company logo at the top and the big image in the middle.

I tested the email again.

No luck! I was still stuck in Promotions.

Okay, I thought to myself, let’s see what else I can do.

Step #3 – Change the footer

I shortened the email’s footer and made it sound less promotional.

The third test showed that the email was delivered to…  the Primary tab in all test Gmail accounts! Mission accomplished!

But that’s not the end of the story

I decided to re-add some of the deleted elements to the email to pinpoint exactly when it started getting categorized under the Promotions tab.

I added the big image and tested the email.

It showed up under the Primary tab. So far, so good.

I added the logo and tested the email.

Bad news! It landed under the Promotions tab.

My conclusion? The image-to-text ratio does matter.

I deleted the logo and added the “View in browser” header with the link.

Again, my email was sent to Promotions.

I then removed the link to view the email in the browser and left only the text.

It didn’t help. Gmail still sent the email to Promotions.

You see, it turns out Gmail associates the “View in browser” header with bulk promotional mail.

Getting out of Gmail’s promotions tab for good

So here are five straightforward ways you can increase the chance that your email is delivered to Gmail’s Primary tab and therefore increase the chances that it is opened.

Watch your image-to-text ratio. It should be approximately 40:60. Too many images and too little text sends the email straight to Promotions.
Watch your links. Include a reasonable amount of links, ideally 2-3, but remove social icons and links as they are characteristic of bulk mail streams.
Watch your header and footer. Header text like “View in the browser” and footer text like “Unsubscribe from this mailing list” or similar, makes Gmail (and probably not only Gmail) think your email is promotional. If you are sending emails using an ESP, edit the default footer (if possible) and correct it. At the very least, replace “Unsubscribe from all future mailings” with a simple “Unsubscribe”.
Make it personal. In my experience (our team investigated hundreds of test reports and messages), Gmail doesn’t like emails sent out as subscriptions to mailing lists. Personalize your email as much as possible. Write simply and clearly, as if you were composing a quick note to a friend.
Keep it simple. Try to avoid fancy email templates provided by email service providers. Create a custom template associated with your brand. Keep the template as clean and basic without background images, scripts or complex HTML coding.

One final thing that Gmail looks at besides the email content is the level of recipient engagement. So the people you are writing to can actually help you get your email out of the Gmail’s Promotions tab!

Here are some bonus tips for capitalizing on this:

Encourage a reply. Wherever possible, craft your email so that it engages a recipient in a conversation. Ask them to reply to you and share their opinion, thoughts or experience. The example below offers a great example.
Encourage the move yourself. Ask the recipient to drag your email from their Promotions tab to the Primary tab. Ian Brodie developed a good case study of how this method helped him get out of Gmail’s Promotions tab jail.

If you are able to achieve recipient engagement, it will show Gmail that your emails are wanted and should be delivered to the user’s Primary inbox. Over time, Gmail will learn from the recipients’ actions and will start sending your emails to the Primary Inbox straight away.

One last important thing to note is that if your email is purely a promotional newsletter, you should probably leave it to stay in the Promotions tab. Otherwise you may end up with multiple complaints and unsubscribe requests as recipients may think your content is irrelevant.

Wrapping up

The content of your email really does inform its deliverability and categorization. To investigate why your email goes to the Spam or Promotions folder, start by testing your email content as I did in the case study above.

Changing particular elements in content can often solve deliverability issues, provided that you are sending the email to a confirmed opt-in list and that other elements of your sending infrastructure are in order.

Deliverability is, by nature, changeable and unpredictable. You may never know how each mailbox provider will treat your email and where it will land, but with consistent testing and the above tips, you should be able to navigate yourself out of Gmail’s Promotions tab.

Guest Author: Julia Gulevich is an email marketing and deliverability expert and customer care service consultant at G-Lock Software with over ten years of experience. She has authored numerous articles, essays and ebooks about email marketing, list building and email deliverability on her blog.

The post A Practical Guide On How to Get Out of Gmail’s Promotions Tab appeared first on Jeffbullas’s Blog.

 

Source: A Practical Guide On How to Get Out of Gmail’s Promotions Tab

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It



Today’s post is from Hootsuite’s blog. I answer a lot of questions on Facebook’s Pixels – how to insert them, what to do with the information, etc. This article explains Facebook Pixels very clearly. Enjoy and be sure to visit Hootsuite’s blog for more educational content!

*****

If you’re using Facebook ads—or you plan to use them in the future—there’s one key tool you should start using right away to get the most out of your social ad budget: the Facebook pixel.

What is a Facebook pixel?

A Facebook pixel is code that you place on your website. It helps you track conversions from Facebook ads, optimize ads based on collected data, build targeted audiences for future ads, and remarket to qualified leads—people who have already taken some kind of action on your website.

It works by placing and triggering cookies to track users as they interact with your website and your Facebook ads.

 

Bonus: Download a free guide that teaches you how to turn Facebook traffic into sales in four simple steps using Hootsuite.

Benefits of using a Facebook pixel

There are several ways you can use data collected from Facebook pixel tracking to refine your Facebook advertising strategy.

Track conversions

The Facebook pixel allows you to monitor how people interact with your website after viewing your Facebook ad.

You can even track customers across their devices so you know, for example, if people tend to see your ads on mobile but switch to a desktop before making a purchase—or maybe it’s the other way around. This information can help you refine your ad strategy and calculate your return on investment.

Remarket

Pixel tracking data allows you to show targeted ads to people who have already visited your site. You can choose to get really granular here—for example, you can show people an ad for the exact product that they abandoned in a shopping cart or added to a wishlist on your website.

This capability is why you should create a Facebook pixel now, even if you’re not using Facebook ads yet—so you have retargeting capabilities from your very first Facebook ad.

Create lookalike audiences

Facebook can use its targeting data to help you build a lookalike audience of people who have similar likes, interests, and demographics to people who are already interacting with your website, helping you expand your potential customer base.

Run effective ads

Using a Facebook pixel can make your ads more effective by improving the quality of the ads you run, and by improving the targeting of the people who see them.

In addition to improving your ads based on tracking their effectiveness, you can use Facebook pixel data to ensure your ads are seen by the people who are most likely to take your desired action.

For some examples of companies using the Facebook pixel effectively, check out our post 5 Surprising Ways to Optimize Your Facebook Ads.

How to use a Facebook pixel

You can use Facebook pixel tracking to collect data on two different kinds of events: a set of nine standard events that Facebook has predefined, or custom conversions that you set up yourself. An “event” is simply a specified action that a visitor takes on your website.

Standard events

The nine standard Facebook pixel events for which you can simply copy and paste standard Facebook event code are:

View content: Someone lands on a page on your website.
Search: Someone uses the search function to look for something on your site.
Add to cart: Someone adds a product to their shopping cart on your site.
Add to wishlist: Someone adds a product to a wishlist on your site.
Initiate checkout: Someone starts the checkout process to buy something from your site.
Add payment info: Someone enters their payment information in the purchase process on your website.
Make purchase: Someone completes a purchase on your website.
Lead: Someone signs up for a trial or otherwise identifies themselves as a lead on your site.
Complete registration: Someone completes a registration form on your site, such as for a subscription product.

Custom conversions

You can use custom conversion events in place of standard events, or to collect more details than Facebook pixel standard events can provide.

Custom conversions use URL rules based on specific URLS or URL keywords. So, for example, you could use Facebook pixel tracking to record views of a specific category of merchandise on your website, instead of tracking views of all content using the “view content” standard event—perhaps to separate dog owners from cat owners based on which sections of your pet supply website they viewed.

Before you can use Facebook pixel custom conversions, you’ll need to help Facebook understand the details of the conversion event you want to track. To do so, head to your Facebook Ads Manager, then go to Custom Conversions and click Create Custom Conversion to define your custom conversion event using URL rules.

You can also create Facebook pixel custom events by adding more details to standard events using additional bits of code called parameters. These allow you to customize the standard events based on:

How much a conversion event is worth
Product name, category, or ID
The number of items someone adds to their shopping cart
A specific search string
The status of a registration

How to create a Facebook pixel and add it your website

Now that you know what you can track, and why you would want to do so, it’s time to create your pixel and put it to work on your website.

Step 1: Create your pixel

1. From your Facebook Ads Manager, click the hamburger icon (≡) and choose Pixels.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

2. Click Create a Pixel.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

3. Name your pixel, accept the terms, and click Next. When choosing the pixel’s name, keep in mind that you only get one pixel for each ad account, so the name should represent your business, rather than a specific campaign.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

Step 2: Add the pixel code to your website

To put the pixel to work gathering information on your website, you now need to install some code on your webpages. There are two ways to do this depending on the tools you have incorporated into your website. We’ll use the copy-and-paste method here. The other option is to use an integration or tag manager.

1. Click Copy and Paste the Code.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

2. Copy and paste the pixel base code into the header code of your website—that is, post it after the tag but before the tag. You need to paste it into every single page, or into your template if you’re using one. When you’re finished, click Next.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

3. Copy the appropriate event code based on the actions you want to track on your website. For custom conversion code, click Custom Event. This Facebook help article can help you figure out which type of setup is best for you: basic, recommended, or advanced.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

4. Paste the event code in the appropriate location on your webpage based on the action you want to track. It should go just below the tag for a new page that opens as a result of the tracked action (like a thank you page). Or, you can attach the code to specific HTML elements like buttons that trigger actions within a page. When you’re done, click Next.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

Step 3: Confirm your Facebook pixel is working

Before you start relying on the data from your Facebook pixel, you should confirm that it’s working properly.

1. Download the Facebook Pixel Helper extension for Google Chrome.

2. Visit the page where you have installed the Facebook pixel. If the extension finds the pixel, the icon will turn blue, and a popup will indicate how many pixels are found on the page. The popup will also tell you if your pixel is working properly. If not, it will provide error information so you can make corrections.

The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It | Hootsuite Blog

Image via Facebook for Developers.

Note: The current Facebook pixel combines two older pixel versions: the conversion tracking pixel and custom audience pixel. Facebook discontinued the conversion tracking pixel on February 17, 2017. If you were using the Facebook conversion pixel, you’ll need to switch over to the new Facebook pixel. You can learn how to do so in this Facebook business help article. If you were using the old custom audience pixel, these instructions for Facebook pixels explain how to upgrade to the new version.

Get the most out of your Facebook ad budget with AdEspresso by Hootsuite or Hootsuite Ads. Both are powerful options that make it easy to create, manage, and optimize campaigns.

Learn More

The post The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It appeared first on Hootsuite Social Media Management.

 

Source: The Facebook Pixel: What It Is and How to Use It

How to Prepare for Self-Publishing: Marketing



Source: How to Prepare for Self-Publishing: Marketing

Expert publishing blog opinions are solely those of the blogger and not necessarily endorsed by DBW.

self-publishing, authors, indie publishing, writingThis is part six of a six-part series.

You’ve written your book, had it edited, sorted out the formatting and typesetting and done everything you can to make sure it’s as good as it possibly can be. Your cover design makes your book stand out to potential readers and you’ve polished the blurb until it gleams. So what can you do to get it in front of as many people as possible and get those sales rolling in?

Getting your book reviewed

It takes a long time to review a book. Reviewers often have a backlog that they’re working through, and naturally you want them to read the whole thing and give their considered opinion. You need to plan your campaign well in advance and start much earlier than you might imagine. If you want national publications or well-known/tastemaker bloggers to review your work, you’ll probably need to allow four to six months’ lead-in time, and remember that it’s likely they’ll want hard copies.

Plan ahead and get creative!

If you’ve written other books before, you should already have been using these as a platform to generate excitement among your readers and get them anticipating your next one. Even if this is your first book, you should always try to create a buzz on social media. The more resources you are able to create, the better your campaign will work. This could even include writing short stories based on some of the characters in your book. Try some point-of-view changes, experiment with pre-releasing a prologue, write a poem, start a story and invite your readers to finish it as part of a competition—this is your chance to really get creative!

Social media

It’s better to use just one social media platform well than to try to do everything and not get the results or engagement that you’re looking for. We recommend Twitter and Facebook as starting points, but if Pinterest, Instagram or something else is your thing, then go for it.

Every platform has its benefits and reaches a different audience, so it helps to know who your target audience is beforehand and to determine which platform they are likely to be using before diving in there yourself. It’s important to be enthusiastic about the platform you’re using rather than seeing it as a chore; this will shine through in the way you use it. You can use a scheduling tool like Buffer and then plan some time in your schedule to create your updates all at once rather than letting it eat away at your writing time. Try not to use formal language (unless it suits your target audience), and don’t forget to check back on your notifications and to respond to your followers!

Giveaways

Lots of self-published authors recommend free giveaway periods to generate interest, get further up the lists that matter (recommended reads, etc.), gain reader reviews on sites such as Goodreads and then start gaining some traction elsewhere on the web.

Save your money

Be cautious about going for paid reviews. They aren’t necessarily bad, but the general consensus by both authors and tastemakers is that they aren’t worth the money or the effort. Reader reviews have a more engaged reader base behind them and are more honest, therefore perceived as more trustworthy and of greater value.

Keep the momentum going

Think about how you are going to sustain interest for more than just the initial release period. You might want to plan some longer-term projects to keep the enthusiasm going, or look at how you can use this book to start marketing the next! Keeping your fanbase engaged over a long-term period is the key to a successful writing career. Is there an aspect of your life or a theme in your book that you can use to connect more personally with fans and use as leverage in your marketing?

If your main character is a baker, for example, and this is important to the story, why not target baking or related trade magazines and see if they’ll give you an interview or feature? If a character has a health problem, would a related charity like to collaborate with you to raise awareness of what they do? Whatever the theme, create content based around this and start conversations on a regular basis; this can be anything from blog posts or Q&As to a mini video series.

In the real world

There is a wealth of information about how you can promote your book online—use it to your advantage. But don’t neglect real-world promotion as well. Bookstores are often keen to promote local authors and may be able to help you stage events like book signings. Libraries might welcome the chance to get more people through their doors, too.

Don’t use social media as your sole method to drive sales online. Try some old-fashioned promotional tools like bookmarks and flyers as well, and try to get people back to your own website and to join your mailing list. Remember that you don’t own your fanbase on Facebook/Twitter etc. The network does, so by converting likes and followers into mailing list sign-ups, you have more ownership over their contact details. You can then use this to create higher engagement and better relationships with the people who are genuinely interested in your writing.


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Fiction Writers: A Simple Approach to Build a Better Email List



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Source: Fiction Writers: A Simple Approach to Build a Better Email List

You likely know that getting more people to subscribe to your mailing list should be one of your top priorities.

Failing to do so would be a huge business mistake. Besides, as a fiction author, email marketing is one of the best ways to cultivate a readership.

The problem? It’s easier said than done.

You have to get people to subscribe.

You have to send out engaging emails.

You have to compel your audience to support you.

These are huge marketing challenges. And while improving your persuasion skills is a good idea, there’s another adjustment you can make that’s also effective.

Best of all, it’s simple to do.

The surprising benefits of choosing a smaller target audience

Let’s start with a brutal truth: People don’t like giving out their email addresses.

That means it’s hard to get a signup from someone who isn’t already enthusiastic about your work. And even if you do, it’s challenging to hold their attention with the emails you send.

So what if you focused your email marketing on people who have enjoyed at least one of your stories?

This is a different mindset than trying to get anyone with some interest onto your mailing list. Targeting readers who have experienced and liked your fiction writing makes your email marketing choices clearer. By tailoring your actions to a very specific group of people, you’ll increase the chances they’ll positively respond.

The areas of your email marketing that will benefit include:

Attracting subscribers

The magnet for fans is your storytelling. Offering free eBooks is great as a lead generation tactic as well as an incentive for email list signups.
It’s clear that asking for a subscription to your mailing list at the end of each of your fiction pieces is one of the best places to do it.
You know if you’re not getting more subscribers, it almost always comes down to one of two reasons:

your fiction is not yet seen by the right people,
or, your writing needs additional refinement

Sharing content that engages

Once you know you’re emailing fans, then coming up with ideas for your emails should be a lot easier. If you understand why they like your storytelling, then you can figure out ways to elevate their enthusiasm.
Remember that existing readers have a certain level of interest and familiarity with your work. You can make references from your world that outsiders wouldn’t get. The engagement level is high.
You can show your appreciation by giving stuff that you know will be valuable to your fans. Maybe that’s your time by responding with a personalized email, or your writing by sharing some flash fiction.

Presenting desirable offers

If you’ve done the hard work of finding and engaging people who like your fiction, then you shouldn’t have to make any hard sells. Your offers are geared for an audience who want them.
You’re also in a position to ask for non-monetary support such as book reviews and spreading the word on social media.
If you track your analytics, you’ll see open and conversion rates that are reflective of a true readership that you’re connected with online.

Photo: pixabay.com

The post Fiction Writers: A Simple Approach to Build a Better Email List appeared first on The Book Designer.

An Intro to BookBub Ads (Insights From NINC 2016)



Wanting to dabble in BookBub Ads? This is a great article from this year’s NINC. Enjoy!
NINC Master Class - BookBub Ads

 

 

 

BookBub’s partners know us in the context of Featured Deals. But BookBub now offers more than just a single marketing channel to our author and publisher partners. In our workshop at this year’s Novelists, Inc. conference (slides below), we focused on explaining the differences between Featured Deals and BookBub Ads in order to help our author partners determine when, why, and how they should think about using each marketing tool. Our new BookBub Ads platform is not yet available to all our partners, but it will be in the coming months, so we hope this information is helpful even for those of you still on the waitlist.

Featured Deals provide authors with predictability. Most of you are familiar with the Featured Deals process: We decide which books get selected (and have strict requirements for what can be submitted), we determine the category (or which readers you’re reaching), we choose the timing, and we quote you a price. Having this control allows us to fairly accurately predict how Featured Deals will perform. We’re able to charge fees intended to generate positive ROIs, and we know the majority of partners will be successful.

On the other hand, BookBub Ads provide authors with flexibility. We’ve heard from partners for years that they want to reach BookBub’s audience with different kinds of book content, and we launched Ads to address this pain point. With Ads, you can advertise whatever book you want. It doesn’t have to be discounted or meet any of our other Featured Deal requirements. You decide what runs, when it runs, how often it runs, what your ad looks like, which readers you’re reaching, and how much you want to pay. That’s a ton of control.

The downside to flexibility is that the onus is now on you to make your campaign work. Flexibility means Ads won’t work for everyone. It will work best for partners willing to test and optimize their campaigns. We will continue to evolve the product to help you run successful campaigns, but Ads will always be more hands-on and more variable than Featured Deals.

The value is that you now have another marketing channel in your toolbox, and when BookBub Ads work, they can be enormously powerful. You’re now able to reach BookBub’s millions of active, engaged, hungry book buyers with any book you want to promote. The power is in your hands. Now, as Tim Gunn would say, it’s up to you to “Make it work!”

The presentation below is from the workshop we gave at NINC on how to run successful Ads campaigns. Browse through the slides for some key takeaways, and please remember that BookBub’s Partners team is always available to help. We’re here to work with you on your marketing strategy and help you get as much value out of our partnership as possible. So please feel free to email us at [email protected] any time!

Note: If you’re interested in running a BookBub Ads campaign, you can join the waiting list using the form at the bottom of this article or on the right side of this page. We’re only able to support a small number of advertisers at this time, but we’re busy expanding capacity, and in the months ahead we’ll gradually invite members of the waiting list to use the tool.