Social Media Traffic 101

Ana Hoffman at TrafficGenerationCafe.com is one of the most knowledgeable people I've come across on the web when it comes to promoting yourself through social media, and all of the info on her site is free!

Here's just one article that I've found incredibly helpful...

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Social media has been called a lot of things:

  • the best thing since sliced bread;
  • productivity killer;
  • the next marketing wonder.

Truthfully, it doesn’t really matter what YOU think about social media. If your audience and your competitors are there, you don’t really have much of a choice, do you? Social media is to your website as breathing is to living. Period.

A few quick tips before we dive into the mysteries of driving traffic from social media:

Start with one platform

Social media is the great example of Pareto principal  at work (roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes). My best advice is not to spread yourself too thin.

  • Find the one social media platform that YOUR target audience seems to favor and stick with it.
  • Learn the ins and outs of it.
  • Master all the nuances of traffic generation.
  • Figure out how to put most of it on autopilot.
  • Move on to the next one.

How to figure out which one to start with

1.   Use your Google Analytics (GA) data

If you are already driving social media traffic large enough to analyze some stats, then start here.

  • Go to your GA dashboard and look up your referral traffic.
  • See which social media platform drives the most traffic AND converts the best.
  • Focus on that one.

2.   Use your competitor’s data

If you are brand new to social media or even blogging in general, then see where your competitors get most of their traffic from. That should be a good indicator of where your potential readers might be hanging out. The easiest way of collecting this type of data is through Alexa.com.

Just search for any competitor’s site and go under “Clickstream” to see where their social media traffic comes from.

While there are scads of social media traffic sources, I have outlined some of the big dogs for you.

Twitter

Facebook

How to Get the Facebook Crowd to Like You More

Google Plus

Google Plus Bite-Sized Tutorial for the Busy Marketer

Pinterest

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Thanks, Ana! That's certainly enough to get us started!

Until next time! Mary Ann

Seven Twitter Tips to Make Sales Soar!


OK, so you’ve got just 140 characters to work with, and you’re wondering how in the world you can make Twitter work for your business, other than posting what you have for sale, right?

Wrong!  Even if you never used another social media site, Twitter alone could be the secret to your success, taking your business to heights beyond your imagination, and Susan Newman of Susan Newman Design, Inc., has just the suggestions to make that happen.

Susan Newman
Use hashtags.  It’s pointless to simply post info about a sale or a web link, as the only people who will see that tweet will be the ones who happen to read it as it flies by during a very short amount of time. However, the use of hashtags, which are subject words preceded by the “#” sign, will ensure that hundreds, if not thousands, will see that post.

“If you only send out one tweet a day or one per week, and you don’t use hashtags,” says Newman, “then the only people who will see it are those sitting in front of the computer during the moment you wrote it. The only way to get more eyes on that post would be to post that same tweet more often, and to use hashtags, as that’s what people search in order to find the things they’re interested in.”

For example, if you’re tweeting about a new item you have for sale in your Etsy shop, and it happens to be an artistic piece of jewelry, some hashtags you could use might be #necklace, #jewelry, #etsy and #art.

Newman offers a recent example of what the right hashtag did for her: She had entered a contest given by Chase in which 12 winners would receive $250,000 each to build their small business. But in order to be accepted into the contest, she needed 250 votes to qualify. As she had 1,000 followers on her Facebook page, and 6,000 followers on Twitter, getting 250 votes would seem easy, right?

Newman said her pleas for support went nowhere, and she was deeply perplexed.

“Day after day I’d post my request for votes, and maybe I’d get one here, or two more there,” she says, “but when it came down to my having just one week left to qualify and I was nowhere near 250, I said to myself—I’m doing something wrong. Why can’t I get these votes?”

Then the answer came to her…in the form of the hashtag #missionsmallbusiness, which she’d spotted in another entrant’s Twitter post. Apparently, this was the hashtag associated with the contest, and entrants were using it in their tweets as a way to ask for votes, which all basically said, “vote for me and I’ll vote for you.”

Once Newman began using the hashtag, she quickly ended up with 280 votes, AND she made great connections with small business owners from all over the country.

“This whole experience made me realize that you can’t succeed at a particular Twitter task unless you know who your target audience is,” she says.  “My assumption that my friends and followers would help me get votes was wrong, not because they didn’t want to help, but because the issue wasn’t important to them, whereas it was important to the other entrants seeking votes. The minute I figured this out, within a day and a half I had all the votes I needed.”

Invest in the software Tweetadder.  Now that you know about hashtags, how do you start reaching that valued “target audience” Newman speaks of?  She says that for about $50 for a lifetime membership, Tweetadder will be working for you all day long while you’re off working on other aspects of your business. (Note: This is not a paid endorsement for Tweetadder.)

“It’s really amazing in what it can do,” Newman says. “Its scope is incredibly broad.”

Here’s just a few of its features:
It searches hashtags, then automatically follows those people for you. If they don’t follow you in return, it will automatically unfollow them. (It also can create a White List for people to never unfollow.)
It can search by keywords and profiles.
It can manage multiple Twitter accounts.
It can find out what keywords people used to find and follow you.
It can schedule tweets throughout the day, and can even schedule them up to a year in advance.
It can post your tweets to Facebook, LinkedIn and MySpace.
It can automatically retweet another user.
It displays current Twitter trends.

The list goes on, Newman says, noting that ever since she started using the software, not only has her Twitter exposure grown, but it has also freed up a lot of time that she can use to advance her business in other ways.

“You can load in 20 tweets, then check them off that you never want them deleted, and in fact you want them to continue to be randomly posted. I’ve been doing that for all my brand interviews and blog posts.”

Use your team to create a Twitter Day. Newman suggests that the New York Etsy Team pick one day a week to create a thread on its discussion board whereby everyone retweets one another’s Twitter posts. She says this works incredibly well in an online social group she belongs to.

“Each week, we have a Twitter Thursday, and the rules are that you put in one tweet that you’d like everyone else to retweet. When you post your tweet, put an 'RT' in front of it (for 'retweet'), and all participants have to do is just copy and paste it into their Twitter feeds.  Once you add your tweets to the list, it’s then your obligation to retweet everyone else’s,” she says. “When you have 25 or 30 women participating, your tweets are getting a great reach.”

Be sure to include your handle in every tweet.  If your tweet asks readers to see your art or visit a link, it goes out into the Twitter universe, and that’s that. But if you include your handle (which is stated like this: @yourtwittername) and other people retweet your post, your visibility is not only increased, but also your klout score (which is the measurement of someone’s overall online influence).

“I think people don’t understand what Twitter is really all about,” Newman says. “It’s not like Facebook, where you post something, then go make dinner. On Twitter, you have to be a bit more attentive, as you can also have conversations.”

Make sure that the tweets you’re sending are consistent and often.  Previously, the common wisdom was that one shouldn’t tweet more than five times a day, as readers would find such repetition annoying. But that’s no longer true, as it’s now evident that if you send out the same tweet five times in one day, most likely there will be different eyes reading it each and every time.

“You would never do that on Facebook,” says Newman, “as it would be annoying. But on Twitter, it’s actually okay to retweet old posts…especially the ones that have information that people are looking for.”

For example, on this very blog, the story “Four Quick Tips for Getting Those Google Hits,” which was another interview with Newman, has continued to get readers, and that’s because Newman has continued to tweet about it, which in turn has caused it to be retweeted countless times.

Use fresh language in every tweet.  The best way to continually draw traffic to posts, pages and artwork is not just to tweet frequently, but also to use creative language that will grab attention. “I just wrote a blog post on how to find clients when business is slow,” says Newman, “and I titled it ‘Offer Your Best Cookies and Watch Them Follow.’ It’s an interesting copy line, and I see that it’s getting retweeted.”

Pay attention to how you phrase things, and once in awhile, tweet something that people will find of service in some way. Don’t always just send out info about new listings. Draw people in by being helpful and kind.

Keep your characters to 120. Even though Twitter allows you 140 characters, if you keep your tweet to 120, you leave some space for people to comment in a retweet.

Remember, too, that you have can personal, private conversations on Twitter. “People think that Twitter is impersonal and Facebook isn’t,” Newman says. “That’s not true. On Twitter, you can have that personal conversation, but it still has to be brief and to the point.”

Newman will be kicking off her fall webinar series this week, Wednesday, July 25, at 2 p.m., with a webinar titled “Using Pinterest for Your Business,” to gain more traffic, leads and sales. Go to http://broadcastlouder.com/classes/creativity-abundance-2-0/ for more information.

Until next time!
Mary Ann
www.maryannfarley.etsy.com

The "Cutie Pie" Jewelry Box

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LinkedIn: Four Tips to Build Your Business


We’ve all said the same thing at some point: I’m a member of LinkedIn, but I’ve no idea why, as I don’t get what it’s about. What’s the point of it? Is there some way to use it that I’m missing?

You bet there is, according to Susan Newman of Susan Newman Design in Jersey City, NJ, who says that LinkedIn may just be the best social media site out there at the moment. As people have become more and more frustrated with Facebook and its constantly changing landscape, they’ve been giving LinkedIn a second look, and have been amazed at the scope of its functionality. Newman offers four tips to understanding LinkedIn better.

Susan Newman
You can make your profile much more robust than you know.  Aside from putting in all the basics about your current stats and your work history, you can add imagery by connecting to free portfolio sites like Behance. Or you can add a Powerpoint presentation by connecting with Slideshare, which also allows you to insert a video into that presentation.

“When you click on my own LinkedIn profile, a video will immediately start playing, and it really attracts people," says Newman. "All of a sudden they hear me talking, so when they scroll down a bit, they’ll see a two-minute video of me and when I'm done talking is shows a slide presentation of everything I’d like to show to them. It makes a huge impact on viewers.”

She says that when filling out the places where you’ve worked, instead of inserting the company name, insert your role, as that’s the criteria people will be searching for. “I’m a brand identity designer,” says Newman. “People aren’t going to find me based on the name of my company. They’re going to find me under a search for brand identity designers.”

That’s how you’ll get found, she says, and once you do, seeing a portfolio and video in your profile will give visitors a much better sense of who you are both as a person and a business.

Join a LinkedIn group, then make use of the advanced search functions. Not many people know this, but on LinkedIn, there’s a group for just about anything you can think of…animal lovers, jewelry designers, “green” activities, etc. What makes this significant is that, because LinkedIn only allows you to connect with people you know, if you like a person’s comment in a group, you now have a reason to connect with him or her. You can see all of your groups’ discussion activities through daily or weekly email digests.

“Once you receive your digests, you look through the discussions to see if there are any you want to participate in,” says Newman. “You then go to that discussion, read what they’re talking about, then add your own comment. What’s significant is that if there are 500 comments, that’s 500 people following that discussion, so your own comment gets sent out to all of those people. You can reach so many people in such a simple way.”

Even if there are only five people following a discussion, all it takes is one golden connection to make a difference in your business, and that’s where LinkedIn’s search functions come in. When you load the LinkedIn home page, at the top right hand corner, you’ll see that the search bar is  automatically set on people. But if you click on “Advanced” to the right of the search bar, you’ll be able to search for people using just about any criteria you can think of via the keyword box.

“Let’s say that I was looking for creative directors,” says Newman. “Once I click on ‘Advanced,’ a whole load of criteria opens up on the left side of the page. I can then limit my search to location. Once I find someone I want to connect with, I click on that person’s profile and it will tell me what groups they’re in, and specifically if there’s a group that we have in common. If so, I can now send a message saying that we are both in this group, and it would be cool if we could connect.

“The great thing about LinkedIn is that it offers ways to get incredibly high visibility, which we’re not getting anymore with Twitter and Facebook, where there’s just too many people now and too much going on,” Newman says. “Seventy-five percent of people don’t even see your posts anymore.”

At one time, Facebook “Pages” were a hot topic, but with Facebook’s recent changes, Pages no longer offer the functionality they once did. Many users find the Timeline (which was forced upon Pages) confusing, and Newman has seen a drop-off in Page usage. For a time, many thought that Google+ would be a great replacement for Facebook Pages, but Newman believes Google+ is trying to be all things to all people and just isn’t delivering.

“Google+ tried to combine the best of both worlds of both Facebook and LinkedIn, but the two sites are just too different,” she says. “LinkedIn’s discussion groups are the best out there, which people are beginning to gravitate to as they become more and more frustrated with Facebook.”

Using LinkedIn’s “Question and Answer” section can set you up as an expert. It can also offer a wealth of information that you just won’t be able to find anyplace else.

To ask a question, in the top right search bar, use the pull-down menu and click “Answers.” On that page, you can ask anything you want, like “What should I charge for a dozen printed greeting cards on Etsy?” Once you read the list of answers, you’ll also have the opportunity to click on which was the best answer, which will then give a credit to that person as an “expert.” The more times you answer questions and get the “expert” credit, the more likely you’ll begin to show up in listings as an “expert” in your particular area.

“The best reason for joining LinkedIn is two-fold,” says Newman. “The first is that you want to have a place that stores your complete profile where many people will be able to find you. The second is that you’ll want to join the LinkedIn groups and participate in or start discussions in order to open yourself up to a huge amount of people.

“If a group has 30,000 members and you post a discussion there, that’s a lot of eyes on that topic. You no longer have to worry about 10% of your followers on Facebook seeing your photo. On LinkedIn, you could literally get hundreds of comments and have people connecting with you left and right. The whole key is visibility.”

Schedule your social networking, so as to not spread yourself too thin. Newman says that as there are so many social networking platforms available now, business owners should approach them in one of two ways: Either pick one or two platforms and focus on them exclusively, or stick to a tight schedule of when you’ll post to which platform.

“There are different types of audiences for each platform,” says Newman. “The people who follow YouTube are different from those who follow LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook or Google+.  With so much going on, people are in danger now of spreading themselves too thin. Personally, I focus a lot on Twitter, and as a result have seen my followers quadruple in one year.”

But she also follows a social networking schedule, meaning that on certain days she’ll be sure to post something to Facebook, while others she’ll work on LinkedIn. Of course, if she has something urgent going on, like a new seminar or a new blog post, she’ll “pollinate” across all platforms in order to get as many discussions going as possible. But her favorite for discussions is by far LinkedIn.

“People are finally starting to get the message of LinkedIn,” she says. “Yes, it’s a business-to-business site, but the discussion area is more of a community talking to each other. And very often that community is huge.”

Until next time!
Mary Ann

"Serenity" Wood Block Print
Shop: maryannfarley



Connect!

If you have an Etsy shop and a Facebook fan page that you use to connect with your customers, you will be happy to know that it is now even easier to link the two.  This allows shoppers to instantly like your shop's Facebook page from your Etsy shop while browsing your wares. Once the connection is established, you can post items from your shop to your Facebook account without having to switch from your shop to Facebook.

Here is an image of my fairly new shop, The Hairy Vetch, where I sell hair accessories. It's not connected to the social world yet and looks a little lonely.


Clicking on the Facebook icon under the shop banner brings me to the Info and Appearance page of my shop. From there I can select the Facebook page I want to connect to the shop and instantly the Facebook Like button appears on the page.


Once I click the Like button, Facebook registers that I am my first fan!


Use the same process to connect your shop to Twitter. With a Twitter connection:
  • Shoppers will see a Follow button for your Twitter account below the banner of your Etsy shop.
  • You’ll be able to tweet about each new listing you add to your shop.
  • Anyone who has Followed you through Etsy will see your updates in their Twitter Timeline.

Now I should start my conversation with my future fans. For some tips on how to have a meaningful and professional social media presence in your shop, check out Etsy's Guide to Facebook.

Let's connect!

Thank you to Etsy a Holiday Handmade Cavalcade sponsor.

Simone
groundsel.etsy.com
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Crafts in Chelsea Giveaway

Crafts in Chelsea is bringing handcrafted back to its neighborhood on October 17th on 21st Street between 8th and 9th Avenues. To celebrate this event, The {NewNew} and the artisans of Crafts in Chelsea have joined forces to offer this amazing giveaway.

Clockwise: Miniature Print by Virginia Kraljevic, Mug by Mud Matters, Baby Dress by TTinTin, Onesie by Stoopher & Boots, Crocheted Wrist Cuff by Stellar Vision Creations, Body Polish by Pure Spa 2, Note Cards by Bugged Out, Beaded Socks by Tepper Wear, Nature Coaster Set by Dainty Creations

The lucky winner of the giveaway will receive a {NewNew} tote bag filled with the following:

The contents of the bag alone will take care of all of your Holiday shopping needs.

To participate in the giveaway you have to:

  1. Copy the following language into the “What are you doing” box on your twitter page:

  2. RT @TheNewNewNY #craftsinchelsea 10/17 21st Street/8Ave Giveaway Rules http://bit.ly/3WjEb9

    and

  3. Follow TheNewNewNY on twitter.

The giveaway ends at 5 p.m. on October 17. The winner will be randomly selected from all tweets with this message and will be notified via direct message from TheNewNewNY through twitter.

I hope you will be able to join us in person at Crafts in Chelsea where you will find handmade delights of the finest handmade arts and crafts the New York Metro are has to offer. From elegant jewelry to unique upcycled handbags, to cutting edge fashions, artwork, and more!

There will be something for everyone with free food for kids, games, bouncy castles and a petting zoo inside the school - all to occupy the children, leaving the parents free to shop the best handmade goods in the Metro New York area

Good Tweet

Simone
groundsel.etsy.com
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Heart The {NewNew} on Twitter

Vote for the best Twitter Tee ever!

And while you're at it, don't forget to follow the {newnew} at twitter.com/thenewnewny




-- Susan
persuede.etsy.com
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