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Welcome to The Social Forge brought to you by SocialMediaWright Inc. Our podcast will publish every Thursday morning and will typically run between 30-45 minutes talking about things related to business, website development and social media marketing to help entrepreneurs grow their business.

The SocialMediaWright website has a collection of between 100-200 inspiring quotes if you need some daily motivation.

Below you will find links to various locations where you can download our podcast. If you like it, please subscribe to it.

Apr 11, 2019

The Social Forge Episode 7 - Show Notes 

If you have been listening to our podcasts we like to start each episode with an inspiring quote from an entrepreneur or thought leader from around the world.

This Weeks Inspiring Quote is from Albert Einstein who is attributed for saying A person who never made a mistake, never tried anything new.

If this is your first time joining us on The Social Forge and you are looking for some inspiration, you can go to the socialmediawright website, and look for the menu button marked inspiration.

We have collected between 100-200 quotes from business leaders and entrepreneurs in a great graphic image that you can download or share on social media.

We also publish a new quote every morning at 7 AM on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Topics This Week:

  • In our Business Section: Press Releases and HARO
  • In our Website Development Section: Local SEO
  • In our Social Media Marketing: Working in the Instagram universe

Business

  • whether you read a newspaper in print as many have done for more than a century or you read your news online via your desktop or your smartphone the one thing that stays the same is the journalist.
  • PT Barnum is attributed to saying “there’s no such thing as bad publicity”
  • if you have the choice good publicity is preferable to bad publicity, bad publicity may be preferable to no one knowing you exist
  • something that businesses have relied on for years to help increase their exposure and try to gain publicity for their business is the press release
  • a press release is an announcement distributed to members of the press media
  • this might be the opening of a new business, the launch of a new product or the appointment of someone to a new position in your company
  • it consists of anything that you think is newsworthy in the hopes that a journalist might be working on a related story and will want to interview you or your story inspires a journalist to follow up with you and write about your news
  • as an example yesterday morning we launched our own press release announcing the launch of this podcast The Social Forge
  • we used a company that we have used before called PRWEB to distribute our press release and they offer several packages you can check out depending on who and where you want your press release distributed to
  • as of yesterdays press release we had 5 episodes available for download and then an hour after our press release went out we had 6 and the one we are doing right now will be 7
  • our goal with our press release was to accomplish a few things:
    • increase downloads of our podcast
    • getting expanded coverage of our podcast which hopefully leads to more downloads
    • putting out that we are looking for guests to interview
  • within 2 hours of our release 120 individuals/organizations had picked up our story and the story had been viewed 421 times.
  • we have also received press inquiries about doing an interview with an organization
  • We use PRWEB and have for a number of years. If you look at domain authority and page authority alone their site has extremely high rankings so if they are linking back to your site it's going to be viewed positively by the search engines.
  • there are a number of organizations out there that can do press releases for you so when you decide on one, look at the cost, who they deliver to and what type of SEO juice can they provide you if they are linking back to you.
  • beyond just a press release there is a company that you need to check out and that is HARO
  • HARO stands for Help A Reporter Out
  • its a place which is free to join as a source that connects journalists working on a story with sources for their information
  • so an example might be if a national US magazine was writing about the increase in podcast popularity and was looking for sources
  • we would pitch to them that our experience with The Social Forge makes us a good resource for them
  • if they agree, we do an interview together and hopefully, when they write their article they mention us and the social forge. Now if you were reading a national magazine and saw someone talking about the social forge podcast it might be enough for them to go and check us out
  • and all it would have cost us is a little bit of our time
  • you can even try using HARO as a journalist trying to source out podcast guests
  • so as you work to grow your business awareness through the latest ideas in social media don’t forget methods that have existed for years as a way to get your message out about your business.

Website Development

  • one of the areas of SEO that is gaining in popularity is local SEO
  • if you are a yoga studio in our home town of Milton, Ontario showing up in search results for yoga studios in Phoenix Arizona might be flattering but it's not likely that you are going to see an increase in class participants from it.
  • there are a number of things you can do to ensure that you show up as a local yoga studio for your home town
  • one of the things that you will want to check out is Google My Business
  • Google My Business gives you the opportunity to update your profile and interact with your customers
  • you can reflect your hours of operation, photos about your business or your products, manage reviews by your customers and these results integrate into Google Search and Maps
  • imagine if I searched Google Maps for a yoga studio and it shows me your studio 5 minutes from my house, as I hover over it, I can see pictures of the studio, what hours your open and what people are saying about your studio. In that one snapshot, you have the chance to convince me that your studio is the only place for me to be.
  • your Google My Business profile can show your average review score, a price range scale, with the ability for me to call you, check out your website or get directions to your location
  • to get started with Google My Business, first sign up with a free account at Google My Business
  • part of the validation process is they require a mailing address for your business to send you a postcard with a unique code that you can then verify on your account
  • the postcard can take a couple of weeks to reach you and if you have a single location for your business I would urge you to jump on this early
  • local SEO will take a while to gain traction so you want to get your profile set-up and verified
  • when we talk about local SEO and Google My Business you are going to hear the terms NAP and Citation a lot
  • NAP stands for Name, Address and Phone Number and you want to ensure this information is consistent all over the internet wherever you display your business.
  • For example if we have a listing in one place that reads SocialMediaWright Inc. and a listing somewhere else that reads SocialMediaWright.com as the title while they both relate to the same place, Google will see it as two separate entries, so for us wherever we have our NAP listed we want to ensure that it reads SocialMediaWright Inc.
  • a citation is any reference of your NAP on the internet, think of them as backlinks even though nothing has to be linking anywhere.
  • Google as it scours and indexes the internet will take note of different areas that it notes a NAP entry and the more that you have the more validation that you are who you say you are.
  • where can you get citations: business directories, the yellow pages and similar sites that give you the opportunity to provide your name, address, phone number are going to create a citation for Google My Business. Many of these sources will provide both a free and paid version of what they offer, but the free version should be sufficient to give you the citation you are looking for, though if any of the paid options are attractive to you, you may want to consider them.
  • other items to consider are photos of your business in your Google My Business profile, it's suggested that you have three photos for the different sections that it offers.
  • another thing that will drive your business in local SEO are reviews so encourage your customers to leave a review on your Google profile.
  • you can check out your competition by going to Google and typing in their name and location so if we were Yogalific Yoga Studios, Milton Ontario and our primary competitor was LoveYoga, Milton, Ontario by entering their name in Google we should see what type of reviews they have been receiving
  • or you can just type in yoga studios and your location to see the highest ranked yoga studios around you
  • read the reviews and see how complete their information is
  • other things you can check out is to make sure your website is using schema. Schema is tags or microdata that you can add to your HTML files to help the search engines find you and index you. This will help to capture your business name, address, phone number and other important information on your site that you want to capture.
  • If you want to check your online information, a free tool that you can use is the Moz Local Checker
  • if you don’t see any business results you may want to look at adding some with Google My Business and Facebook

Social Media Marketing

  • today we are going to move away from Facebook but to another social platform owned by Facebook and that is Instagram
  • Instagram launched in October 2010
  • in April 2012 Instagram was acquired by Facebook
  • Instagram is an application to share photographs uploaded by its users. Users have the ability to apply various filters and change the filter settings on their photographs to share memories on the platform
  • you can now upload videos to the Instagram platform
  • Instagram has become widely popular and if you have a product that is very visual than its a platform that you should consider being on
  • if you don’t have a very visual product it is still a platform that you should be on but you may have to use your imagination about what type of photos about your business that you are going to post.
  • when setting up your Instagram profile you will have the choice to have a personal account or a business account
  • the advantage of the business account is:
    • it provides access to Instagram insights to tell you about your page
    • you can run Instagram ads
    • you can have a contact button on your profile
  • Your Instagram profile gives you a spot to show an image, so you may want to consider  the image of your business or brand
  • it provides you with a name for your profile so you should think about something that will give your viewers a sense of what you are about
  • you have to select a unique username so if your preferred choice is taken, then you will have to be a little clever in determining your user name.
  • you can only have one link on your profile, so you can either link directly to your website or e-commerce store or link to a site that will allow you to have multiple links, an example of this is Link Tree.
  • you have a place to provide a bio of your business but are limited to 150 characters
  • from various research I have done, I’ve seen it recommended a number of times to use bullet points that clearly convey what your business is about, you may even want to consider appropriate emojis
  • with certain integrations, you can also have a shop feature on your Instagram profile where you can tag images that are for products that are for sale. This is a feature that we are using on our WeirdMojoTees Instagram profile and we were able to set this up through our store on the Shopify platform.
  • Instagram also gives you the ability to create little stories on your profile that will last 24 hours before being deleted unless you choose to highlight them on your profile
  • so the process of adding content to Instagram is pretty easy. You take a photo or access the photo library on your camera, apply any of the filters that Instagram provides you, add a description or message in your text box, if you have multiple Instagram accounts, identify the accounts to post to and post your photo.
  • hashtags are an important element of Instagram, it helps people search for a particular item
  • you have a limit of 30 hashtags for your photos, some people suggest not using all thirty but I am of the opinion to use the maximum to increase the exposure of your photo on the platform
  • you can either add your hashtags in your textbox before posting your photograph or you can add it into a comment on the photo, either will work.
  • so one of the things you are going to want to do for your business is research popular hashtags that relate to your business so that it increases the likelihood of your photograph being seen by the audience you hope to attract.
  • what we do is we set up a hashtag subject in a Notes program and collect groups of hashtags for different photos and accounts that we have
  • so we have a Social Forge Instagram account and we identified 30 hashtags related to entrepreneurs and podcasts that we have saved in our notes program
  • when we go to post a photo on Instagram we go to that note, select all and copy and paste into Instagram
  • another big element of Instagram is followers and everyone seems to be trying to grow their followers as best they can
  • some people will purchase followers from outside services, these may be either real people or bots but I find it suspicious when I see an Instagram accounts with 100,000 followers and only 20 people like their photos
  • my recommendation is don’t purchase followers, try to grow real followers organically
  • you can do this by checking out other people’s photos and liking them and leaving a genuine comment on their photo
  • if you have just set up your Instagram account, you may be limited in the beginning to the number of comments that you can leave
  • if you have over 10,000 followers or are verified, Instagram gives you the ability to swipe up on Instagram stories to take people to a link like a website or possibly your email distribution list
  • Instagram is something that you have to work at to grow your following. Our SocialMediaWright following is 140 people and the photos that we post are our messages of inspiration with some business type photos, our WeirdMojoTees Instagram account where we post inspirational messages, activity photos and t-shirt photos has 4400 followers and it takes a bit of work to continue to grow an audience
  • there is a practice that you should be aware of that exists, its not uncommon for someone to follow you hoping you will follow them back and then they will unfollow you. In time their followers will grow to a substantial amount and their following will be a small number
  • if this is something that concerns you, you can find various apps that will tell you people who have unfollowed your Instagram account and then you can decide whether to unfollow them or not.
  • Instagram has also given rise to the influencer, these are individuals who have gathered a large following and can be hired at times to promote your products to their following so as a business that is something you can consider, just try to make sure their following is real
  • Instagram is a great way to showcase your products and if you are a service business an opportunity to share photos of your business and the people on your team.

Conclusion:

We want to close out every show with this thought. If you are not bringing value to the party, what are you bringing? We recognize that you pay us with your time, listening to the show and we hope that we have been able to offer you some value in ways to help grow your business.

If you are looking for a place to share ideas on how to grow your business with other entrepreneurs. Consider joining the SocialMediaWright Entrepreneurs Facebook Group. You can find the link on the SocialMediaWrights Facebook page.

If you like the show, please subscribe to it so you do not miss a future episode. We will be back next week until then everyone have a great week.