05 Oct 2017
by Admin

LinkedIn Adds New ‘Talent Insights’ to Help Employers Improve Hiring and Recruitment Efforts

Following Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn, one of the key areas where you can expect to see LinkedIn improve is in data utilization.

LinkedIn, which now has more than 500 million members, has an unmatched database – they have the professional and educational histories of (almost) all of those members. That sets LinkedIn apart from other networks – while Facebook’s also trying to muscle in on LinkedIn’s turf by introducing job listings on Pages, LinkedIn’s data gives them a big advantage.

The latest development on this front is LinkedIn’s new ‘Talent Insights‘, which, as described by TechCrunch, is:

“…a self-service, big data analytics product that will let recruiters make deeper queries into statistics for hiring and employment, based on LinkedIn data.”

There are two elements to the new offering, which is being launched in beta today.

The first will enable recruiters to get more data on positions they’re looking to fill – as you can see here, when you search for a job title (along with qualifying parameters for the specific skills you need), Talent Insights will provide you with a range of stats, including where people fitting this description live, which schools are producing these employees and how such candidates are engaging with your company on LinkedIn, helping to improve focus.

The information will enable recruiters to hone in their search and refine their targeting approach, helping to boost appeal to the right people for the required position.

The second element of Talent Insights looks at similar insights for your own company, highlighting rising skills requirements, role breakdowns, growth charts and more.

Both will help enhance and improve the recruitment process, utilizing LinkedIn’s ever-expanding dataset to enable smarter hiring decisions and strategies.

LinkedIn’s been moving in this direction for some time. Back in 2015, LinkedIn launched improvements to their Recruiter tool which enable recruiters to find candidates by using their existing employee profiles as templates.

By utilizing their available data, LinkedIn’s been working to develop recruitment systems which work on more than gut feel, enabling employers to make smarter decisions based on statistical evidence – which LinkedIn is able to do because, as noted, they have such data available.

There are some questions, of course, over the validity of LinkedIn’s data – there’s no restrictions on what you can put on your LinkedIn profile (you could say you’re an astronaut and no one will stop you). But still, given the rising prevalence of companies using LinkedIn as a reference point in the hiring process, there’s an increased onus on users to be honest in their profile and provide accurate data.

With tools like these, and the added backing of Microsoft to get such initiatives off the ground, LinkedIn could become the essential platform for recruitment, the key destination which both employers and job seekers need to turn to in their process.

And given recruitment is still LinkedIn’s largest source of revenue, with some 11 million job listings on the site at any given time, it makes sense for LinkedIn to boost t

05 Oct 2017
by Admin

7 Tips for Using Emojis in Social Media Marketing

With 92% of the online population using emojis, it makes sense for marketers to get in on the action.

Emojis enable you to speak the same language as your customer base, and can make your social media posts much more noticeable. They also add a bit of fun to your marketing message and your brand.

And while you don’t have to go as wild as Chevrolet did with its emoji-only press release, you can find some fun and unique ways to communicate with emojis.

Here are some tips to help you get started with emojis.

1. Make Sure the Emoji Makes Sense

Emojis are meant to complement a message. That won’t happen if the emoji doesn’t make any sense.

Take this emoji campaign by Tampico, for instance.

No one really understood what Tampico meant – while they were trying to tap into the emoji trend, the messaging simply didn’t make sense.

Don’t make the same mistake with your campaign. You don’t want your fans and followers to be left scratching their heads, not sure what to think.

2. Don’t Make Light of Serious Situations

Emojis are fun, cool, and trendy – all things that student loans aren’t.

Student loans are potentially debilitating, and they’re anything but fun. That’s why it was such an epic fail when Hillary Clinton tweeted this:


Her followers didn’t take kindly to the tweet – many felt that she oversimplified the issue and was condescending.

Emojis should never be used to make light of something that’s extremely serious. Keep this in mind the next time you send out a message with an emoji.

3. Don’t Force It

Emojis should be an extension of your normal expressions, and as such, they should never feel forced.

Think of how you use emojis in regular text and social media conversations. You might wink when you’re teasing and smile when you’re happy about something. Then, of course, you have the emoji with the heart when you love someone or something.

Your emojis need to be just as natural when you use them for business purposes – if you can’t think of what emoji you need for a certain post, it doesn’t need one.

You shouldn’t have to put a lot of thought in it. It should be natural and automatic.

If emojis don’t feel natural to you, you need to start practicing. Start using them in your personal conversations and then let it spill over to your business posts.

4. Stick with Your Brand Messaging

Using emojis is a fun way to step out of the stuffy corporate box – but you don’t want to step so far outside of it that you can’t get back in when someone needs their taxes done or a new computer set up.

The emojis you choose should never cause you to depart from your brand’s messaging – that means if you run a financial services company, you should probably avoid the blowing kisses emoji. Stick with smiley faces, thumbs up, clapping, and emojis like that.

On the other hand, if you work in a more lighthearted setting, that type of emoji would be just fine.

Before you send out anything, think about your brand’s message and ask yourself if the emoji would detract from it or offend anyone in your target audience. If it works for your brand, go ahead and hit “Submit.”

5. Don’t Go Crazy

Using emojis is fun. In fact, it’s so much fun that some brands go crazy with it.

As a rule, you don’t want to use more than four emojis at a time. Otherwise, your audience could get a serious case of emoji overload.

6. Know What the Emojis Mean

There are so many emojis out there, so it’s normal to get a little confused – but you don’t want to accidentally send out the wrong type of emoji from your corporate account.

Do a little research before you hit “Send.” Emojipedia will give you the details on all of the emojis – just type the name of the emoji into the dictionary and learn the meaning.

Taking a moment to ensure you understand the context can save you from embarrassing emoji mishaps.

7. Create Your Own Emojis

Emojis make brands more fun and relatable, and you can take that fun to the next level by creating your own emojis.

There are lots of emoji makers out there, including Moji Maker.

Use a tool to create emojis that best represent your brand.

You can also use a tool to create emojis that are relevant to whatever is going on in the world – for example, imagine if you could have created your own custom emoji about the solar eclipse. That would have gotten some attention for sure.

How Will You Use Emojis in Your Social Media Campaigns?

Now that you have some tips, it’s time to hit the ground running. Think about the ways you will use emojis in your social media campaign, and then get started. You’ll be surprised by how fun and effective using emojis for social media marketing can be.

05 Oct 2017
by Admin

20 Effective Ways to Stop Boring Your Readers [Infographic]

Does your blog struggle to keep readers interested and coming back for more? Are you looking for ways to be a little less boring?

MyTasker shares 20 effective ways to stop boring your blog readers in the infographic below.

They emphasize the importance of readability – keep words, sentences and paragraphs short and free of fluff.

They also highlight the importance of images – our brains process visual information quicker than text giving you a better chance of engaging your readers.

Check out the full infographic for more info.

20 Effective Ways to Stop Boring Your Readers [Infographic] | Social Media Today

This post was first published on the Red Website Design Blog.

04 Oct 2017
by Admin

Instagram Adds Polls in Stories, New Creative Tools

Instagram’s adding a new method for conducting polls, with a sticker option that lets you pose a question within your Instagram Story and see the results from your followers as they participate.

Instagram Adds Polls in Stories, New Creative Tools | Social Media Today As explained by Instagram:

Whether you’re trying to plan tomorrow’s outfit, choosing which class to take or figuring out where to go for dinner, now it’s easy to share a two-option poll right in your story. After you’ve taken a photo or video for your story, select the “poll” sticker and place it anywhere you’d like — you can write out your own question and even customize the poll choices.”

Polls have proven a popular option on other platforms – Twitter introduced their native polls tool back in 2015, while on Facebook, you can create polls in Groups, events pages and on Messenger.

But more relevant for Facebook might be the recent use of polls within Facebook Live streams. As you’ve no doubt seen, many Pages have been creating polls in streams which use Reactions as a voting mechanism – something Facebook advises against.

Instagram Adds Polls in Stories, New Creative Tools | Social Media TodayBut those Live polls perform very well, so much so that Facebook has sought to add in new Live tools which enable publishers to create Live polls which don’t rely on Reactions as a voting tool. The addition of a similar option in Instagram is something of an acknowledgment of their popularity, adding in another interactive option to boost Stories engagement.

When you’re ready to view the results of your poll, you swipe up to open the viewers list for that part of your story.

“There you’ll see everything you need to get the best answer for your question. Not only will you see how many votes each option received, but you’ll also see who voted and what option they chose. That way, you’ll be able to compare votes from the friends and followers whose opinions you trust most. And just like your story, your poll and its results will disappear after 24 hours.”

From a marketing perspective, polls could be great for brands trying to make the most of Stories, giving them another way to gather audience feedback and generate response. The ability to narrow down your audience responses could also help businesses segment their audience and get a better understanding of specific preferences.

In addition polls, Instagram’s also adding in two new creative options for Stories.

The first is a new color picker tool which enables you to select any color from your image or video and use it in your text or drawing tools.

Instagram Adds Polls in Stories, New Creative Tools | Social Media TodayHow it works is, when you go to choose a color, you’ll see a new eyedropper icon at the far left (as shown at the bottom of screen above). Tap on the eyedropper and you’ll be able to select any part of the image to duplicate its tone, which Instagram will then apply in your own drawing/text.  

The other new tool (on iOS) is an alignment guide, which overlays your images with lines to help you center your content and/or avoid placing it anywhere that might get covered up when someone watches your story.

Instagram Adds Polls in Stories, New Creative Tools | Social Media Today

‘And when you rotate text or a sticker, new guides will also help you snap your sticker back to horizontal.’

Both are small updates, for sure, but they further add to the options available, making it easier to create more personalized, and better composed, Stories content – which could also prove especially helpful for brands (particularly if you have trouble matching your corporate colors).

Stories is now up to 250 million users, while Instagram more broadly is up to 800 million, and rising fast. If you’ve not considered how you might be able to use the platform to better connect with your audience, it may be worth investigating as you plan for 2018. 

Polls and the new creative tools are available as part of Instagram version 17 and above in Apple’s App Store and Google Play.

04 Oct 2017
by Admin

Instagram's Adding New Shopify Tags to Enable In-Stream Purchases

It’s been a while since we’ve heard anything more on Instagram’s shopping tags, their coming eCommerce addition which would enable businesses to add information and price tags to products featured in their posts.

Instagram's Adding New Shopify Tags to Enable In-Stream Purchases | Social Media TodayThe tags themselves are still in development, but more businesses will soon have access to a version of the tool via an expanded integration with Shopify, which is being rolled out ahead of the holiday season.

Instagram's Adding New Shopify Tags to Enable In-Stream Purchases | Social Media TodayAs explained by Shopify:

“In this new rollout, merchants selected by Instagram and Shopify will be able to start tagging their posts with products in Instagram’s apps to showcase to their over 800 million monthly active users. With Shopify’s 500,000+ merchants in categories like fashion, jewelry, beauty, furniture, and home decor, it’s a perfect match to Instagram’s inspired community.”

The Shopify tags will enable users to make purchases from any Instagram post, within the app, which is essentially the same process as Instagram’s Shopping Tags, though it’ll only be available to selected Shopify merchants at this stage (Shopify plans to expand this to more of their users in the future).

While it’s not the full rollout of Shopping Tags, it’s another step toward the greater expansion of Instagram as an online shopping hub. This is the direction Pinterest has been headed, with additions like Buyable Pins, but for Instagram, with its noted 800 million users, this could be a massive change, a huge shift in the online shopping landscape.

Indeed, Facebook more broadly is looking to integrate various new in-stream payment options – it’ll take time to perfect, particularly considering regional regulations and providers, but it won’t be long till you’ll be able to make one-tap purchases in Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, even WhatsApp. That could be the next major shift for social business, and in particular, Messenger Bots. Right now, you can summon a range of processes via bots, but you still need to go through a separate payment flow to confirm.

The time is coming when such methods will all be integrated.

For Instagram, partnering with Shopify is an easy way for them to move in this direction, lessening the burden on their systems to establish the full payments protocol. And given so many people are already using Shopify for such purpose, it’ll not only give Instagram more data about the potential popularity of tags and purchase options, but it’ll also introduce users to the process, making it easier for them to fully integrate Shopping Tags for all businesses in future.

04 Oct 2017
by Admin

The Value of Getting Personal on Social Media

It’s wonderful that we live in a world where technology enables us to conduct transactions online with people across the globe – it would be unfathomable to previous generations that you could open a Shopify store, start running Facebook ads and create a profitable business without interacting with a single human in real life.

But while this kind of business model is paradise for the introverts among us, humans still have an inherent desire to purchase from other humans, instead of anonymous companies.

Tactics can generate immediate profits, but relationships are essential if you want to build a long-term brand.

For example – Facebook advertising is one of the most lucrative marketing tactics around right now, but I’m fully aware that it won’t last forever. What will pass the test of time, however, is the relationships that you build with your customers.

Social business strategist and author, Bryan Kramer, implores business owners to stop thinking in terms of B2B or B2C and instead, take a H2H (human-to-human) approach to communications.

In one of his blog posts, Kramer states:

“Businesses do not have emotion. People do. People want to be a part of something bigger than themselves. People want to feel something. People want to be included. People want to understand. But people are also humans, and with that comes mistakes. Missteps. Failures.”

Not everything has to be sugarcoated. Oftentimes, being transparent about failures and mistakes can build more trust than dismissing them.

Social media is one of the most powerful tools available for demonstrating the humanity behind your brand, and consequently, developing real relationships with consumers in your niche.

To help you build a long-term brand, here are some of the best ways to get personal on social media.

Tone of Voice

I highly recommend creating a style guide for social media, so everyone who posts on your official accounts can maintain a consistent tone of voice.

The style guide should contain advice on emoticons, hashtags, terminology, language and general tone. In addition to posts, this tone should be kept when engaging in discussions with other social media users.

People want to feel as if they’re interacting with a real human one-on-one, rather than yet another generic brand.

While Dell Computers and Taco Bell aren’t going to have a similar tone of voice for social media, I’d always favor a friendly, conversational tone – so long as it’s appropriate for your niche.

The Value of Getting Personal on Social Media | Social Media Today

The Value of Getting Personal on Social Media | Social Media Today

Customer Service

As a consumer, the businesses that earn my money aren’t always the ones with the best products – they’re usually the ones that are the most helpful.

I’m not alone in this regard.

Marketing expert and best-selling author, David Meerman Scott, was planning a trip to Antarctica, and eventually booked with the company that had the best educational content and was the most communicative on Twitter – instead of competitors that were cheaper or that had higher ranking websites.

These days, people expect to have customer service queries answered by a brand’s social media account. Instead of relentlessly self-promoting like a lot of companies, taking the time to respond to questions and provide useful answers is invaluable.

When you communicate like a real human, and deliver value to people on social media without seeking financial remuneration, this builds trust, which eventually leads to sales.

It’s important to note that 71% of consumers who’ve had a good experience with a business on social media are more inclined to recommend it to others.

Being helpful to someone on social media can create a positive ripple which travels far beyond that individual. In fact, you can look at this as a referral marketing tactic.


One of the best ways to make your business more transparent is to showcase your employees. Pictures of real workers beat stock photos, hands down.

Again, people like doing business with other people. Being able to see the workers who helped create a wonderful product or services goes a long way in building trust.

Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, clearly understands this – Cook constantly publishes photos of his employees and shows his appreciation for their hard work. His Twitter timeline is full of this type of great content, which builds camaraderie within the Apple organization as well as outside of it.

The Value of Getting Personal on Social Media | Social Media Today

Cook also posts about women’s rights, LGBT rights and a range of other social issues, which helps to convey Apple as a brand where inclusivity is celebrated.

The Value of Getting Personal on Social Media | Social Media Today

Don’t Forget Video

Video content is surging right now – 87% of marketers use video content and social video generates 1200% more shares than text and images combined.

You can really showcase the human element of your business by publishing behind-the-scenes video tours of your workplace.

Since Facebook users spend 3X more time watching live videos compared to traditional video content – I recommend using Facebook Live to showcase your facilities and host Q&A sessions with employees.

In 2016, Dunkin’ Donuts streamed an awesome tour of its facilities using Facebook Live. Fans of the brand got a glimpse into the process for devising and manufacturing new products, and got to meet some of the people responsible for their favorite edible delights.

If you really want to get ahead of the competition and create an immersive experience for your fans, consider looking into 360-degree videos.

While you’ll have to invest in some equipment and spend time learning how to shoot good footage, 360-degree videos allow for a very intimate glimpse into your business.

Check out Facebook’s Live 360 page for more information on hosting 360-degree live streams.

Can you think of any other ways to be more personable on social media and showcase the human element of your brand? Please let me know in the comments below.

Image Credits

Featured image:

04 Oct 2017
by Admin

LinkedIn's Adding Snapchat-Like Geofilters for Conferences and Events

Here’s a sentence I hadn’t anticipated writing: LinkedIn’s adding new, Snapchat-like video filters to its app.

Yes, LinkedIn is also copying Snapchat – though their use-case is a little different, and does make a lot of sense.

As part of their new native video tools, LinkedIn’s giving conference attendees the opportunity to add dedicated event frames to the videos they create while attending such functions.

LinkedIn's Adding Snapchat-Like Geofilters for Conferences and Events | Social Media TodayAs reported by Mashable, the overlays, which are designed to look like conference badges, are location-activated (similar to Snapchat’s Geofilters), so they can only be used while attending the relevant events. The first version of the tool is now available as part of the Grace Hopper Celebration conference in Orlando, but LinkedIn says that it plans to make them available for more events in the future.

It seems strange at first, the melding of hip Snapchat functionality into the button-down, corporate setting of LinkedIn. But when you look at the data, alongside the examples, it actually makes a lot of sense.

According to Peter Roybal, LinkedIn’s product manager for video, video content is shared 20x more than any other type of content on the platform. Roybal also notes that LinkedIn’s new native video option has been especially popular among people attending events.

LinkedIn's Adding Snapchat-Like Geofilters for Conferences and Events | Social Media Today

LinkedIn’s native video process

The event overlays provide another way to help promote events and generate interest, which could not only help boost engagement on platform, but could also help make LinkedIn the network of choice for posting such updates – particularly for speakers who are able to note their participation on their virtual badge.

LinkedIn's Adding Snapchat-Like Geofilters for Conferences and Events | Social Media TodayRight now, LinkedIn’s still testing out the process, and will choose which events will be able to use them, but in future, they may look to turn them into a self-serve option (as Snapchat has), which could give all conferences access to the tool.

It seems weird, it doesn’t seem like Snapchat functionality should fit. But given the discussion of such events on LinkedIn, and the way in which LinkedIn’s looking to use the tool to boost engagement, it could prove to be a popular addition, a new way to help extend the coverage – and reach – of your corporate events.

04 Oct 2017
by Admin

Why, What and How of Audience-First Marketing Strategy and Segmentation [Podcast]

Today’s marketer has no guarantee of reaching their audience on any medium. Not on Facebook or Instagram. Not on LinkedIn or Twitter. Not on YouTube or Snapchat.

Organic reach is dwindling for brands and marketers who don’t have a solid marketing strategy which encompasses social, digital, content, and measurement all centered around their target audience.

Even when you place a simple ad on Facebook, the first question Facebook will ask you is, “who do you want to target?” If you don’t know your target audience, your ad is not only unlikely to reach your ideal customer, but it’s going to cost you a lot more in wasted media spend.

The truth is, without an audience-first marketing approach, every aspect of marketing is going to cost more time and money.

Social currency on the web today = attention + action

It’s impossible to gain the attention of, and drive your target customer to the desired action, if you don’t know who your target customer is.

Many marketers fear taking an audience-first marketing approach, as they falsely believe it’ll be more costly, more complicated and will slow them down. When done right it can actually turbo charge your results.

Audience First Marketing is a Requirement Not an Option

The truth is that an audience-first marketing strategy will help align every aspect of your social, digital, content and media spend to the needs of your audience and the goals of your business.

The good news is that the social networks, and broader social ecosystems, provide us with incredible ways to dig deep into not only the demographics and geographics, but also the psychographics of our audience and potential markets.

Although many marketers claim to know their audience, the truth is a lot of them aren’t doing much more than throwing social content and media spaghetti at the wall hoping it sticks.

Any organization that wants to still be in business five years from now needs to take the time to research and learn about their audience so that they can properly segment, target and implement an audience-first marketing approach.

I’ve developed a two-part podcast series that puts audience-first marketing in a nutshell to help you understand how you can leverage an audience-first social media, digital marketing and branding strategy in order to attract your ideal customer and achieve your goals.

Listen to both episodes and subscribe to the entire series -> iTunes, Stitcher or SoundCloud.

In this 2 part podcast series you will learn the following:

  • The why, what and how of audience marketing in a nutshell?
  • Why an audience-first marketing strategy is required
  • How to define a target audience
  • What is audience targeting
  • What is audience and market segmentation
  • How to segment markets and audiences using demographics, geographics, and psychographics
  • Understanding the important role a buyer persona plays in audience marketing and targeting

Supporting Resources:

How to Subscribe to Social Zoom Factor Podcast

This post was first published on Pam Moore’s blog.

04 Oct 2017
by Admin

12 Simple Steps for Writing an Awesome Blog Post [Infographic]

So you want to know how to write a blog post but you don’t know where to start? Maybe you have a great idea but you’re finding it difficult to put pen to paper.

Don’t worry you’re not alone – this is something a lot of bloggers go through. It takes time to find your groove, especially when you’re new to blogging or writing in general.

If you’re stuck and you’re looking for help on how to write a blog post then you’ve come to the right place. In this infographic Blogging Nectar shares 12 simple steps you can follow to ensure your next post is a winner.

12 Simple Steps for Writing an Awesome Blog Post [Infographic] | Social Media TodayThis post was first published on Irfan Ahmad’s blog.

04 Oct 2017
by Admin

3 Ways to Get Your Employees to Magnify Your Social Media Reach

3 Ways to Get Your Employees to Magnify Your Social Media Reach | Social Media TodayCompanies primarily use their social media presence to promote their services, products or organizational news – but is that really a productive way to capture a greater audience?

If the goal is to connect, engage and convert, then maximizing your organization’s exposure is vital.

Nowadays, companies spend substantial amounts of money on consultants who tell them how to pull in followers and fans, but the reality is, a large part of the solution is internal – using employees to elp amplify your social messaging. Enlisting employee advocates to promote services or products, or to share news and stories on their personal social media accounts, can be a powerful marketing tool for companies.

Advocacy initiatives enable companies to cast a larger net of influence by tapping into the expanded networks already established by their employees. This leverage often leads to increased visibility, and provides an easier way to acquire connections, which continues to build upon your organization’s credibility and rapport.

So how do you get your employees to magnify your reach? Here are three tips.

1. Let them use social media

Chances are employees are accessing social media via their mobile device throughout the day anyway, so why not allow them to peruse their personal platforms on their computers?

Don’t penalize staff for posting, tweeting, commenting or reviewing – instead, encourage them to check in, explore and post during the day (so long as it doesn’t interfere with their productivity).

Companies which are more relaxed with social media usage during company time tend to find that employees are less like to abuse the privilege, and more likely to self-regulate usage. In addition, such a policy can help facilitate a more transparent environment which encourages trust between the employee and employer. Employees will also be more willing to post company-related things on their personal pages because they feel valued and included in contributing to the company’s success.

2. Provide training on social media use

Most employees are actively looking for ways increase their skill sets. Providing them with ongoing social media training helps them develop professionally, while also increasing their social media competency, which helps them understand how to represent themselves online in a way that’s consistent with the company’s brand.

A key element of any advocacy program is highlighting the value of such efforts not just to the company, but to the individual, why building a personal brand helps them in their professional lives, why they shoud want to share their thoughts and insights to expand their presence.

To become effective social media advocates, employees should receive basic best-practices training on things such as setting up profiles, privacy settings and the company’s social media guidelines. You should also offer advanced training on how to market using social media, or on new and upcoming platforms to help employees stay knowledgeable and current about the latest trends.

This doesn’t just help the employee acquire new competencies, but it also helps build a stronger foundation of experienced professionals in your organization.

3. Incentivize usage

There’s nothing like a little friendly competition to get employees motivated. Help your employees help you by gamifying company promotion on their personal social media pages.

Create individual or group contests around who posts the most, or who gets the most likes, shares or engagement. Track the performance using hashtags or keywords, then provide rewards and prizes and distribute them to the top performers. You could also provide bonus incentives, like free lunch, or maybe even a day off for those who can get their networks to take actions, such as joining the company’s email list or attending an event. Employees will begin to post more once they see the rewards in participating.

Employees can be your most treasured asset and ally on social media – they’re influencers in their respective circles and can often get the word out more quickly because people put their trust in other people moreso than they do brands.

Create a social-media advocacy program that’s robust and enticing so that you can build internal brand ambassadors who’ll help you maximize your reach.

© 2017