Top 5 Mistakes Made in Social Media

This week I made a recording about the top 5 mistakes made in social media. These are simple things to fix once you become aware of making them. So after you listen today I hope you will take the time to implement some of the ideas.

social-media-bandwagon

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Facebook & ROI

If you have wondered about the return of investment you will get with Facebook, I The ROI that you need to worry about inunderstand the concern but I would like to share with you the ROI that I believe needs to be focused on when working in social media and that is relationships on investment.

Relationships on Investment (ROI):

Facebook is a relationship based platform. It is a place to build relationships and a presence so people get to know you are there. The important key is to consistently have that presence. Posting several times a day every single day is a key to building that presence. All the time people say to me, “I don’t want to bother people.” A couple of facts; Facebook doesn’t show every single post made to all the people who have liked your page. And two, they are on Facebook skimming through the newsfeed, as long as the posts aren’t the same content that they saw before it’s usually ok with them to see more than one post from you.

One of the numbers you see is the weekly total reach. What this number is telling you is the number of people who saw a post on your page. There are two types of ways for people to see a post, organic or viral. Organic means people see the page on their news feed; while viral means that they saw the post from a paid ad or a post boost.

We build communication on Facebook fan pages, by asking questions and asking for participation. Ask them to click the like button if they like the post, or to click the share button if their Facebook friends would enjoy the post. Comment below with their opinion of the post. This is the period of time where people are learning to know you and you are learning your community as well. It’s what Facebook calls “people engagement” and is one of the numbers that are measured.

The last piece of the report is the “total page likes.” Page likes are very important and good to have. But here is a mistake in the thinking of some people who want to build a large presence quickly on Facebook. They go to different places and “buy” likes for their page. Now, they can have over a 1,000+ likes for their page but have no engagement. It seems unlikely that there would be that large amount of people liking a page but no comments, likes or shares happening. It looks fake because it is, and creditability has just been destroyed in the eye of a potential customer. It’s best to take some time and build likes slower with real people.

After all of this work you have now created the Relationship on Investment! People have watched you and feel like they know you, have decided they like you, and can trust you. Congratulations! This is when you can start seeing return on investment with your Facebook fan page.

Need help with creating the ROI you are looking for with your social media? Contact us at Your Virtual Marketing Machine, 682-225-4034.

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Facebook Games and Contests

by Jennifer Fardello
Social Media Manager for SRS Virtual Assistant

Recently my employer and I were discussing two of the Facebook pages I am managing. We were trying to come up with ways to get more people to engage with us on these Facebook pages.  My employer came up with the idea to have a contest or play a game on these pages. So we talked and A blonde girl at home using a laptop computershe came up the idea to play a game versus a contest.  I will let you know at a later date how that turned out.

So I did some reading and was advised if you are going to have a contest or play a game on social media you need to have a purpose for the contest.  So I asked myself what is it I am trying to achieve.  The goal for my employer and myself is to get more engagement on these two clients Facebook pages.  I want the people to like my post and to commit on my posts and hopefully share my posts with their friends.

So now I have to decide what type of contest or game I am going to offer. Here is an example Tom owns a sunglass company and want to get more orders.  He wants to offer a prize of a his most expensive sunglasses and a trip somewhere warm and exciting for the winner and a guest.  Tom’s goal is that people will like his page comment on it and share this with the people they know.  And hopefully they will order more sunglasses from his company later.  This draws people in and gets them to make comments on a post.  Maybe he post his new hottest purple shades and one of the people who follows his Facebook page sees them.  They like the post and comment about it and share it with their best friend who loves all things purple.  Hopefully the purple lover then sees the posts comments shares the post and orders the shades!

When you decide to have a contest or play a game you are looking for organic views and likes to your page.  You want people to follow you.  Yes with a contest or a game not everyone that participates will continue to follow you but you are trying to build your page up and get your page name out there.  One of my favorite Facebook pages is one where they offered a sweatshirt at a discounted price.  I have since then continued to follow them and have ordered from them three more times.  I can’t wait to see what they come up with next!

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Lessons Learned From a Small Business Conference

Hi everyone,

This is a slightly different format for my blog. But I wanted to talk to you today. I feel so inspired about my business right now. Just came back from Infusionsoft’s conference called ICON and I grabbed some little nuggets of truth that all small business owners need and I wanted to share them with you. This short video tells you all about it.

Be open to new ideas for your business. Implement and test those new ideas and most important don’t be the bottleneck in your business. If you don’t have the time to implement or test then #outsource the implementation!

To Your Business Success,

shawn

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How To Use Monday Morning Motivators

Monday MorningMotivators what does it really mean for your business? Is the need really there to put your time and your money towards creating and implementing these motivators? We are told to always market our businesses and these email marketing pieces are priceless when compared to what they can do for your business. Plus, you probably already have a platform that will make this an easy chore for you, an email marketing system. Most of the small business owners that I have come in contact with have an email marketing system but aren’t aware that it can be used to send out the weekly Monday Morning Motivators.

The benefits of using the Monday Morning Motivators is it takes the form of a calling card to let your past customers know that you are still around, still in business. Remember, when sending out your Monday Morning Motivators you don’t want to try to sell them anything in that email. However, you can put in a call to action. Ask them to click the post, retweet it, share it…whatever social media platform you can share your motivators on do so. It helps tremendously and puts it in front of more people to see it.

The most important thing to remember and realize with the Monday Morning Motivator is consistently showing up in your customers email box so they don’t think you forgot about them. A sporadic, smattering of emails will not give you the results you are looking for.

So, how do most small business owners get the Monday Morning Motivators out to their customers? Unfortunately, many don’t… If you have an email marketing system you have the tool to send the emails out. With a little bit of time you will be able to have a great email marketing system set up, using it and seeing the benefits of these marketing materials before too long.

Time seems to be the issue for many small business owners. Perhaps it’s time to outsource some of the weekly chores such as Monday Morning Motivators to a virtual assistant. We are always here to help you.

Shawn Snyder, SRS Virtual Assistant
682-225-4034

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After 1,000’s of Years Humans Have Discovered the Secret Flaw of Patches and Band-Aids

Lifecycle marketingHope your holiday season is going well and you are enjoying the blessings of the season and not so much the stress of it! We are just coming to the end of a remodel of our bedroom and bath and are so enjoying the end results. Getting to them was not fun at all. Stress, frustration, and the loss of about a month were just some of the trials that we endured during it. But now that we are at the end of it we are glad that we made the decision to fix some of the major issues that we had lived with for 10 years.

I believe we endure things in many areas of our lives. It would be easier to fix the problem but we always seem to put a little patch here and a Band-Aid there and live with things as they are. Most of us who own our own business or work for a small business know exactly what I’m talking about. We just endure until someone or something opens our eyes and we see that fixing the issue might be difficult but life will be so sweet when it’s done!
Having the right tools might be big difference when it comes to doing the job. For a year or so, my company at SRS Virtual Assistant has been learning, testing, and using a tool that has built a reputation of being hard to work with. That tool is Infusionsoft and we love it so much here at SRS Virtual Assistant we wanted to share it with you. Have you heard of Infusionsoft? Are you curious on learning more about it?

We are having a free webinar on December 10 at 7 p.m. central to talk about the Lifecycle Marketing Infusionsoft talks about and how it can serve you and your customers. Let me assure you that there is not going to be any sales pitch at this webinar. We just want to offer you a stress-free way of learning about a tool that other small business owners are using. Maybe explain any questions that you might have.

I’m not even going to take your whole evening. I know my attention span is limited so we’ll get to spend 30 minutes together and then we’ll be done.
To grab your seat for the webinar you’ll need to feel out the form by clicking here.
Hope to see you on December 10th at 7 p.m. central.

shawn

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Learning Your Way Around WordPress Themes

Todays blog is being written by my newest person to join us on the SRS Virtual Assistant team, Heather. She is talking about WordPress and the different themes. Make sure to read to the bottom where we share an upcoming webinar that we will be having this week.

When I was first leaning WordPress, I was a little bit overwhelmed. There was so much to learn about wordpress themeit: plug-ins, pages, posts and most importantly, themes. The WordPress theme is, essentially, the public image of your WordPress site. It will determine the look and the feeling that you wish to convey to clients visiting your online home. There are thousands of themes available to you on WordPress.org and choosing one can be a daunting task. There are many factors that go into choosing the right one for your business. Cost, feel, mobile support and ease are just a few of those factors.

Your theme need not cost you anything as there are thousands of free themes available. Simply search the free themes from your dashboard. Should you feel that you must pay for a theme, you can keep the cost small or large depending on your budget. Premium WordPress themes come with customer support, which, in some cases, allow for troubleshooting with the theme authors themselves. Keep in mind that if you feel you must purchase a theme, make sure that you stay on the WordPress.org site to purchase it. Going off of the site and downloading a theme can leave you very susceptible to hackers.

It is important to make sure that you choose a theme that feels right for your business and your own personal style. We each like to leave our own mark on things and our WordPress sites should be no different. Although, we recommend Weaver II and Twenty Ten, it is important that you find the theme that best fits your needs. In order to do that, you must play with different themes. Download one or several until you find the theme that best fits your business style. If it’s not right, download another. As with anything, when it is the right fit, you will know.

Mobile support is important for business owners today. Knowing that a client can easily access your WordPress site from their smartphone can put your mind at ease. Several WordPress themes can make this happen for you. Again, you can search these themes from your dashboard. If you have your heart set on a theme that does not support this, there is a way around it with a plug-in. We will discuss that in a different blog.

Ease when working with your theme is also very important. We recommend two themes for WordPress beginners, Weaver II and Twenty Ten. These are two free themes and they are easy for beginners to understand and work with. These themes are tried and true and they don’t break as often as others.

Your WordPress theme is the way your WordPress site will look to your clients. It is important to give your clients a nice, convenient place to come to. Finding the right theme can take time. But when you find it, your site will be perfect. After all, your WordPress site is your online home and you should make it the way you want it.

We will be hosting a webinar all about WordPress, domains, themes, and blogs this week. You can get all the information by clicking here.

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A “Call to Action”

Call to Action”
A Series from Confessions of a Newbie VA Jennifer Fardello

I must confess when I first started working as a virtual assistant I really didn’t see why it was necessary to have a call to action on my posts.  Yet I knew that my employer knew things I did not know.   I think the reason I did not feel it was important at the time was I did not understand what a call to action really was or how it worked.

A call to action is when you ask someone to do something or interact with you.  It might be a question you want them to answer.  Like what are your plans for the weekend?  Or tell me do you agree with this and why?  Another way to do a call to action is to ask the reader to click the like button or share if you are on Face book or please retweet (RT) on Twitter.

The reason you want to add a call to action is to get the person seeing your page to form a relationship with you.  They respond to a CTA (call to action) question and then you might comment or like what they said.  You are building a relationship with them.  Over time they may click on a link directing them to your web page and that is where you want them to end up. Your web page usually facebook likeis where you have most of your products you are selling or offering.  If your audience likes your page and trust you they will come back to visit it again and again.  They will hopefully find something on your page and they automatically think their best friend will just love to see, read or watch this and share it on their social media site.  Do you see how the traffic is directed to you?  Click the like button if you do. (lol)

I just could not see in the beginning how this helped my employer’s social media but the more involved I became in my job and other parts of her company the more evidence I saw that this was very necessary to the success of that company.  It’s advertising and marketing something you have to have to run a successful expanding business.

So are you using CTA’s in your social media?  You should be using at least one CTA a day.  The owners of the pages I manage want this and they know it is the best thing for their business.  So I am going to challenge you to make sure you are using CTA’s if you haven’t and report back to me in a month and tell me if it increased the traffic on your social media.

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The Top 5 Ways to Kill the Monday Morning Blues

Are you looking for the way to “Kill the Monday Morning Blues?”

We found the secret…watch here.

The Top 5 Way to Kill the Monday Morning Blues

5. On Mondays you always seem to have a kind word or wise saying to share with people that you run into.

4. People on your list are telling you that their family and friends are noticing a change in them on Monday’s and they aren’t sure why.

3. A smile crosses your face on Monday when you come across a special quote and you know exactly who you are going to share that with.

2. Wake up to your email box full of “thank-you’s” for the motivation you sent to people.

1. On Sunday night you can barely sleep because of the excitement you know you will find in your email on Monday morning.

Are you ready to kill the Monday Morning Blues and also ready to help your customers and clients feel better too?
We have the Monday Morning Blue exterminator ready for you!
Let us save you the time, set up the email and send out a Monday Motivation to people on your list.
To learn more click here and find out
How to kill those Monday Morning Blues!

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Cogs in the Wheel of Infusionsoft

crm-marketing-ecommerceMerriam-Webster tells us that a cog is a wheel or bar with a series of projections on its edge that transfers motion by engaging with projections on another wheel or bar. This truly does explain Infusionsoft and the job that it does. It takes a series of cogs and makes them all work together to create motion and engagement of a business… of your business. The beautiful part about the entire process is that you don’t have to fully understand how it all works you just have to understand all Infusionsoft can do for you and go forward. So that is why I thought knowing about the different cogs of the software could be of benefit to you!

Infusionsoft is an all-in-one sales and marketing software for small business. What this all entails are the cogs of CRM, marketing and E-commerce all working together which helps you get more customers, grow sales and save time. It is the perfect software for small businesses with active websites. With the coaching, training and help that Infusionsoft offers to small businesses it is almost impossible not to succeed.

If you are looking for one system that combines marking in finding and developing new leads and CRM to work hot leads and close sales there is a cog that fulfills that need. Need one system that can automate mailing lists, shopping carts, and online marketing Infusionsoft can take care of that. If you are a local service type business and need one system for customer management and marketing then this software is the answer.

The CRM in Infusionsoft is called the “brain.” It centralizes and collects all the date of a customer. Automation is the key to the success of marketing done. It attracts and leads prospects into buying customers and then follows them through the different campaigns and funnels you set up. Store fronts, billing, shopping carts are all a part of the E-commerce part of Infusionsoft and is usually the miss cog of other services that small businesses might be drawn to.

So, the cogs of CRM, E-commerce and marketing are what makes up Infusionsoft and what makes it such a successful software for all of the above needs. It makes sure that your business does not spin out of control and loses its overall view of sales and marketing. It makes sure that you follow up with leads, prospects or customers with targeted campaigns for each. You don’t need to have several different monthly services to pay for, hire more staff because of your success. All you need is the all-in-one solution of Infusionsoft.

Looking for more information? We offer a 30 minute consult to see how we can help Infusionsoft work for your business or feel free to watch a demo below.

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3 Easy and Free Campaigns To Set Up In Infusionsoft

crm-marketing-ecommerceInfusionsoft beginners sometimes get lost in the vast and open platform they have just been given. Compare it to a kid walking into a candy store and told they can have any candy they want. Wow, but where to start? Infusionsoft has come to the rescue with something called the Marketplace. This is where other users of Infusionsoft have set up campaigns and offered them to others. Some you have to pay for however, others are free. Today, we are going to talk about 3 free campaigns are easy to set up and use today!

  • Contact Campaign: On your website you should have a contact page. This is an important page because it allows people to contact you for a variety of reasons. As you go into the Marketplace in Infusionsoft and search for the contact request campaign. This works much the same way as a regular contact form works with the big difference of follow up added. Someone within your company is assigned to make sure that you contact that person and their request doesn’t fall through the cracks.
  • Newsletter Campaign: The fastest way to build a relationship with your potential and current clients is to provide a newsletter. What I love about this platform is that it keeps checking in with your list to see if they have received the newsletter. And then it sequence has it built in that you can check in with them months down the road to ask how they like the newsletter and to reply to let you know. Talk about creating a know, like and trust factor.
  • Snap Campaign: If you are at a live event Infusionsoft has created a great app and campaign to help you keep in contact with everyone you meet. You add the free app to your phone then click a picture of the business card then there are two choices of the campaign you can send a follow-up email to the people an hour later or have an email sent out the next morning just telling the person how nice it was to meet them.

So there are 3 easy and free campaigns that Infusionsoft offer. They are a great way for the beginner to delve into Infusionsoft and get it working for you.

If you are looking for some more help with Infusionsoft please contact us at SRS Virtual Assistant.

 

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Want the Customer – Give the Service

customer-servicesThis blog is written by my assistant, Jen. Join her as she learns and shares about customer service.

If you have ever worked in customer service you will know that the customer is always right. Well that is still true if you are a virtual assistant.   Sometimes what the client wants will not seem like the best way to do something but they are the boss and I need to listen to them or I may not have them as a client for long.

I was lucky in the beginning that I had someone mentoring me about each client.  This most likely saved me several headaches.  My mentor was passing down her knowledge about each of the clients she gave me to work with.  From the beginning I had a clear understanding of what they wanted and expect from me.  All of the hard stuff was already figured out by my boss/mentor.  Have I told you I was really lucky to start out this way?  Well I am telling you now!

As a virtual assistant I need to build a trusting relationship with my clients.    I am being given information that they would not give to just anyone.  They are relying on me to help them grow their business.  Just like any other job you have to keep certain things private. I do not tell anyone the names of the businesses I work for to protect their privacy.  I also do not discuss one client with another client.  Because I have always worked in the medical field before this I think I have a really good understanding of privacy policies.

I also have to keep my word.  If I promise them something I have to come through with it.  Do I really think they care that I had to get all my Girl Scout troops cookies sorted and it took longer than I thought?  They are paying me for a service.  Nor was it their problem when my fifteen month old pulled my computer off the table and broke it.  I had to figure it out and quickly.

I had to figure out how to manage my time.  I have a busy family life with several demands on me.  I usually work from about noon to three pm Monday through Thursday and occasionally on Fridays.  I love that time of day.  I work for four different clients and I know that I want to have them all done by Thursday morning so that when I talk to my boss we can go over anything that I am having a problem with or if there is anything she has concerns with we can discuss it and fix it before Friday.  I try to not work on Fridays if at all possible since I have other things I want to do.  It took me a couple of weeks to figure everything out and I am still trying to get everything running smoothly.  It’s getting easier each week.  I still love being a VA.

Do you agree that customer service is that important?

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An Introduction to Infusionsoft

Small business owners need many different types of tools to work with within their company. The need for a system to keep track of clients names, emails and addresses and any other type of information to contact a customer. A way to communicate, market, offer services or products will be needed. And always a need to track numbers for the different projects is needed. Sounds like an aggressive amount of items small business owners need to have access to and keep track of, how does one do it?

There are many different type of services and tools out there to choose from. Here are some things to think about and how to choose which ones to use. You need a CRM (customer relationship management); you will need something to help you with setting up communication such as an email marketing system, a store front and a shopping cart are usually needed. Then keeping track of the numbers to see the rates of open emails, which shopping cart works best and so many other things.

Unfortunately, cost seems to be the biggest determining factor. So the cheapest email marketing system is chosen. So many of these only do a small amount of work you need so then you have to go to another software that handles setting up a store front and yet another for a shopping cart. Each of these bring their own set of problems from remembering the ever changing password, remembering how to work each software, to dealing with problems each software will experience PLUS the expense of each one.

Yes, these problems and concerns will happen no matter which software you use but you have just multiplied them by three or four to cover all the needs you as the small business owner have because you were only concerned with getting the cheapest. The headaches and time wasted in shopping this way takes any benefit that you were seeking away from yourself.

My answer to you is a software called Infusionsoft. Infusionsoft is an all-in-one answer that will take care of all the needs you have and you only need this one software to make it all happen. You will only need to remember the information for one sign in, learn one software, experience excellent customer service if you have questions plus only pay for only one software service each month.

So, if you are looking for all-in-one software that does it all. If you are the type of person who understands what it means to use the best, state of the art system out there for small business owners then Infusionsoft is the answer for you.

Interested in learning more? Contact me at 682-225-4034.

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Business Lessons That My Backyard Sparrow Taught Me

IMG_0377We have been doing a lot of work in our backyard this spring. My wonderful hubby set up a couple of fountains for me and we have a container garden going this year along with some pretty annual flowers planted. We love having the birds come in to feed and we have set up a watering station for them as well. But my heart longs for the hummingbirds and butterflies as well so we put some hummingbird nectar out and went and bought a Vitex plant. All said I’m pretty happy with our backyard set up for the summer.

Deeper back in the yard but still within sight range are some birdhouses. Nothing has really happened in them the last year but this year in our Bluebird house of all places a little sparrow family decided to set up house and raise their little ones. Truthfully, I was a little disappointed I mean it’s a bluebird house and I got sparrows. But as we have been working out there I realize that this little family was a welcomed addition. They work non-stop to take care of their babies, gathering bugs and all sorts of good things and taking them to the baby birds.

The Early Bird Gets The Client – A business lesson that this little sparrow taught me is that the early bird does get the worm, or birdhouse or in my case the client. Don’t wait for permission to go after what you want. If you see something that you need go get it and when it’s yours work hard to take care of it. Something that happened this last week-end a bluebird did fly into our yard and landed on the bluebird house. The little sparrow momma was there in a heartbeat. I don’t know what was said but the bluebird shortly fly away. Because of the work our little sparrow family had down the house belonged to them. Are you doing the same? Are you servicing and taking care of your clients so well that if a bigger competitor came along you could confidently tell them to take a hike you had everything taken care of here and the client would agree?IMG_0376

Don’t Do Things The Same Way Everyone Else Does – I told you that we bought a new plant to attract hummingbirds and butterflies. The other morning I was out watering and giving the plant a good soak. And along came my little sparrow and she took the best dirt/mud bath in the water for the Vitex plant. Then I would see her pecking the ground I guess when she saw a bug or piece of grass she wanted. She had the best time there! She wasn’t worried about the experience that plant was really there to provide for. She used it to suit her needs. How many times have we let not having just the right tool stop us from doing our job? To just get out there and make it happen and use what is around us to be successful and stop making excuses. There is always going to be something we need something we don’t know, take a lesson from my friend and just use what you got and enjoy the process of doing something to make your business grow.

IMG_0384If The Client Isn’t Happy Nobody Is Happy – It doesn’t matter what time of the day I go out to the backyard. I always hear my little sparrow singing away. Instantly, it puts me in a good mood and I know her family enjoys it too. The babies will be quiet and then when their momma starts singing they join with their own loud addition. I like to think that the momma is singing to lift everyone’s spirits and to let her family know she is close by and keeping watch on them. They are safe and all is well. Now, I am not encouraging any of us to call our clients and start singing to them. But when was the last time you called your clients just to tell them that everything was ok with their accounts. You were just checking in to update them about the week and that you took care of any problems that did occur. Our clients are busy but they are never too busy to hear that you were on guard, did your work and all is well with their accounts.

So, that is what my little backyard sparrow taught me this week. What was your favorite lesson that she taught me? How can you apply it to your business?

P.S. I tried to get a picture of my little sparrow but she never showed up very well and she wouldn’t stay in place for a close up so my last picture was at the feeders where she spends a lot of time.

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The Top 5 Reasons to Add Conferences To Your Business

ConferenceHow are you all doing? Wow, how I have missed you! It’s the middle of May as I write this and I have to confess that I am just now catching my breath. April was the month of conferences and meetings for me. I’m not just talking about one or two. I was at a conference or had special meetings every week in April, five in all. I learned so much, I enjoyed meeting people and becoming closer to those I already knew but wow did it knock me off my feet for a while when I got home. Plus I had to keep up with all of my virtual assisting work.

I thought it would be helpful to share with you why I believe conferences are so important to a business owner to attend. Here are the top 5 reasons to add conferences to your business.

  1. To Grow Your Business You Need To Network With New People – Not only is it important for you to meet new people and learn about their business. But you need to have people know you and learn about your business. Networking is a great reason to attend a conference. Resist the urge to sit with people you already know. Pick a different spot to sit each time a break it given.
  2. Further Your Education – If you don’t get out there and learn the newest way to do things or hear about the latest technology are you really serious about your business?
  3. Meet The Leaders Of Your Field – Now this is different than networking with other attendees of a conference. I’m talking about finding a way to introduce yourself to the big names in your field. At some conferences you can sign up for 20 minutes or so to discuss your business with those with all the know. If not, go up shake their hand and ask if you can buy them lunch or dinner and have a conversation with them.
  4. Get On A Mailing List – LOL, I almost heard you gasp. But here is my point. Buy something or get on a list and then study how that person markets to you. Look at how they write an email, how often they contact you, what are the different ways they contact you. Look at the order forms. Become a student of their marketing.
  5. Take Your Family – If you have kids bring them if you can. Yes, it will be a hassle. But grow the business from your business to a family business. Have them take age appropriate notes and discuss them during meals. My hubby tries to come to as many business conferences with me as he can. That way we can talk about it and it gives us something to bond over instead of argue about. Another great benefit that we are just learning is to take a day or two before or after the conference and add in some fun time. It becomes a vacation that we can write off the majority of the expense as a business trip.

Comment below and tell me what is your favorite conference to go to.

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