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Monday, August 22, 2016

#EducationMatters – Really Connect with Your Power Partners

Another relevant aspect of education is getting to know the businesses that refer clients and customers to you. These power partners are essential in meeting the needs of your customers.

But what, exactly, is a power partner?

A power partner is a company that isn’t direct competition but has similar client bases. This allows you and the power partner to refer clients to one another.

I’ve mentioned before that social proof is important and explained how team building is essential in your business. Referrals from your power partners are essential aspects of social proof. Why? Their customers and clients trust that your partners wouldn’t steer them wrong. The same goes for your referrals. When you suggest a power partner to a customer or client, you’re giving those power partners your personal stamp of approval. Your reputation is on the line so educate yourself on what, exactly, your partners can provide to your clients.

Remember when I said you don’t need to do everything on your own? You don’t have to be perfect at everything. If you get swamped with projects, doesn’t it make sense to know where you can refer clients when things get overwhelming? Not all projects will fall under your scope of work, and that’s okay.

Take the time to get to know your power partners. Where do their strengths lie? Keep tabs on how they’re doing and how stacked their schedule becomes. Also, make sure your power partners know what you do. This helps in their referral process as well.

Most of all, when you refer a client, let the power partner know they’re coming. It would be a great idea to build a tracking system for referrals. I say this for two reasons: 1. You can ask the customer/client how the connection went and 2. You can find patterns of behavior and cycles of customer/client needs that can forge a direct relationship with a power partner.

What do I mean by that? What if you are a marketing/brand consultant and one of your power partners is a web developer who specializes in building Wordpress websites? Let’s say 75% of your clientele require website overhauls and 5% need new ones created. You refer them, of course, to your web developer power partner, but less than 25% of them actually convert. You and your power partner put your heads together and come up with a referral discount. Or you create a package deal in which you contract your power partner to do the web-end of the service. There are many other options out there. You’d be surprised how often that tiny collaboration can make all the difference in a successful business transaction.

A relationship between you and your power partners can weather storms greater than you ever imagined. The support network you build today can last for generations and is a genuine path for being #BeAwesome at what you do!

Be sure to Follow us and Let's Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+,YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.

Monday, August 15, 2016

#EducationMatters - How Do I Keep Up With Changes in Social Media?

Social Media trends change every day. This summer alone has met with dramatic overhauls of Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. Facebook Live, Instagram Stories, Pinterest Videos, and more have come on the scene. Less than 24 hours after Facebook Live was announced to the public, you had powerful influencers cornering the market while most of the business population was scrambling to figure out the details.

How did they get ahead? Education. Educating yourself on changes in social media is one of the most important things you can do for your brand, but how do you keep up with the trends? We’ve provided three sure-fire tips to keep up-to-date on social media changes:

Check popular social media analyst sites. Follow social media analyst sites like Mashable and the Social Media Examiner.

Social Media Influencers. If that’s not specific enough, search for experts in your favorite social media venues. Sue B. Zimmerman, for instance, is an Instagram expert. She always has great tips and video tutorials that prep for upcoming trends. Jon Loomer is focused on advanced Facebook marketing. Top Dog Social Media has fantastic generalist articles that cover how to communicate on social media, but their primary target is LinkedIn. Following the expert of your preferred social media site is a great way to stay ahead of the game. These are just a few of the experts in their respective fields.

Social Media TV. Set up social media TV using YouTube. Subscribing to a reliable social media channel is as simple as typing “social media” in the YouTube search bar, clicking on Filter & Explore to choose Channel (this sorts out the social media-related channels), and subscribe to any channels that keep you up-to-date in a way you enjoy.

Weekly summary newsletters or RSS feeds. Using or Smartbrief on Social Media can help you stay on track with current social media topics. allows you to select your topics of interest while Smartbrief on Social Media is the most well-respected social media news summary you can have delivered straight to your inbox. Both are free to use.

For RSS feeds, consider using a feed reader to keep all your content in one place. Feedly is a common one that is universal across all mobile platforms. It’s also compatible with most desktops and can also be used in any web browser. It’s also free-to-use. Find marketing gurus and tech crunch sites to follow. This is also an excellent resource for following podcasts that talk about social media change.

Taking the time to learn about social media changes is necessary to your business success. #EducationMatters when it comes to staying ahead of the competition so that you can #BeAwesome in social media.

Be sure to Follow us and Let's Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+,YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

#EducationMatters - Open a Book & Learn Something New

“Unless you do something beyond what you’ve already mastered, you will never grow.”
– Ronald E. Osborne

In life and in business, truer words were never spoken. With so much knowledge at our fingertips through online courses, books, seminars, and more, there is no better time to extend your scope of understanding.

Imagine that your business is water and your knowledge is the river bed it travels down. If you stop learning, the river stops flowing and the water becomes stagnant. Knowledge serves three purposes:

  • 1.     Expand your horizons, both as an individual and as part of a business
  • 2.     Encourages flexibility in change
  • 3.     Provides wisdom and inspiration from those who have been there before you

Don’t limit yourself to business-exclusive topics, either. A person who only studies business will only understand other business-focused individuals and may lose sight of the customer’s needs. A mind needs balance. Time management, spiritual journeys (to include creative expression), biographies, history…the sky is the limit on what you can learn and who you can learn from.

Here are several free (or mostly free) resources available to you:

MIT Open Courseware: The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has offered its course curriculum for free to anyone. From Urban Studies and Planning, to Math, to Global Studies and Languages, there is a course available for anyone.

Your Local Library: You’re probably familiar with this place, but did you realize most libraries have access to online courses, ebooks, and more through a company called Overdrive? If you have a long commute, why not check out their audiobook selection? Learn while you travel. If you want to know whether your local library has this available, check here.

Kindle Unlimited: For a subscription fee per month, you can have access to hundreds of thousands of Kindle Unlimited titles with just a touch of a button. KU allows you to download up to ten titles at a time. If you’ve filled up your allotted space, no worries. Just click on the book you want and Amazon will ask you which book you’d like to return. It’s like an infinite lending library since new titles are added every day. Another bonus you may not be aware of: KU pays authors a small amount per page read, so everyone wins. The Amazon reading app is available on all mobile devices and desktops, so don’t worry about compatibility. Many titles also come with a free audiobook as well.

These are just some resources to get you started. It’s imperative that you set aside personal development time every week. It doesn’t matter if it’s thirty minutes a week or thirty minutes every day, #EducationMatters when it comes to honing your edge. The team here at The Social Media Advisor hopes that these resources help you continue to #BeAwesome.

Be sure to Follow us and Let's Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+,YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

#EducationMatters - Simplify Your Social Media With Tools

This month is all about #EducationMatters. Social Media can be a major time-suck but it doesn’t have to be that way. We’ve listed our top Social Media Tools to help keep you organized, stay on track, and, best of all, save you time so you can focus on other aspects of your business.
  1. Canva: Incredibly easy social media imaging tool that takes the guesswork out of image sizes. With over 50 templates available for various social media sites (From Facebook to YouTube channel art), Canva can deliver high quality productions with a wide variety of image and font choices, making it easy to #BeAwesome. Their price range for images are from $0-$1, but you can always upload your own into the template for free. It’s also available as an app for iPad and iPhone. Android users need not worry. There’s a Canva app on the way for you as well!
  2. Hashtracking: Have you ever wondered if a hashtag you use is a relevant one? Or what a popular hashtag would be for a certain product or service? takes the guesswork out of hashtags for social media campaigns and events. If you’re not willing to pay for ongoing report options, they offer free social media snapshot reports without a subscription. You simply need to log in to your Twitter or Instagram account to use the service. This is a one-time log-in.
  3. Feedly: Have all your content curation in one spot. Feedly is an RSS aggregator. This RSS reader can gather feeds from multiple sites based on your preferences, add feeds from publications, blogs, podcasts, and even YouTube channels. It works well with Google Alerts as well as a multitude of other apps. The best part of the service is that you can organize all your feeds into collections that make them more accessible in the future. One of its biggest pluses is the integration it has with another social media tool, Buffer. 
  4. Buffer: Posting your social-media content across multiple social-media services just got a lot easier. With Buffer you can schedule Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Google+ pages all it once. To use Pinterest, you’ll need to pay for their service, but the others are free. Please note that you’ll need a mobile device to push out your Instagram posts, but that’s an Instagram requirement, rather than a limitation to Buffer. 
  5. Hootsuite: Another option for social media content scheduling and sharing is Hootsuite. Hootsuite can connect to Twitter, Wordpress, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Instagram. Please note that their free version limits you to three social media accounts. Their pro version is $9.99 a month and allows you to have real-time analytics and 50 social profiles. Like Buffer, you’ll need to use a mobile device to push out your Instagram posts.
  6. For businesses that find Twitter especially valuable, this tool helps the user to manage their engagement and presence on the platform. This relationship management tool allows users to monitor and respond automatically with potential leads on the site. It will also track and monitor accounts you have expressed interest in and report their daily activities to you. As with most of the tools mentioned, there are both free and paid versions that offer different features.
  7. Trello: This website exists as an online program management tool with a free option. Users create lists and cards to organize their projects. For businesses with team member, it is simple to assign different individuals to various cards as an indication for team assignments. 
  8. Google Drive & Dropbox: Both of these sites are excellent (and FREE) options for cloud storage that can be easily shared with clients and team. Dropbox is more for just storing the files themselves, while Google Drive is an online document center allowing individuals and team to work within files right on the site. 
This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Social Media Tools. Is there a place where you struggle with time? If so, let us know in comments and we might be able to direct you to just the right tool to help you #BeAwesome at what you do!

Be sure to Follow us and Let's Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+,YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.

Monday, July 25, 2016

#SocialProof - Building Know, Like & Trust With Your Social Media

We’ve talked a lot about #SocialProof and how it affects client/customer trust, but we’ve only briefly touched on the Social Media aspect of building it.

There are three things you want to instill in your clients and customers through social media: Know, Like, and Trust.

Getting Known

Did you know that your audience will grow in proportion to the quality of content you create and deliver?

Develop quality, engaging content on your social media channels. This will help you build a reputation as a subject matter expert within your niche. Use content, evidence, and case studies alongside your ideas and labels to create more impact.

Create content that is accurate. Make sure you research your topic (or the articles you share). Ask questions. Develop relationships with key influencers in your market. Don’t be shameless about it, however. Keep it professional.

Follow these key points, and your clients and customers will rely on you for knowledge.

Build Likability

Likeability is a cornerstone in customer and brand loyalty. It’s not as hard to create as you might think.

Start with authenticity. Be real, and express your voice through your content. Share your stories and get personal, but keep your focus on the positive. There is a fine line between showcasing your personality and becoming overly personal. There is no need to broadcast private aspects of your personal life to your audience.  Just be real and people will respond to that.

Don’t badmouth others or create flame wars. That type of negativity will reflect poorly your company. Be helpful and responsive to comments.

Most of all, make your future clients and customers feel like they’re important to you. As you build likes and shares, don’t forget to leverage that social proof to gain a larger audience. Remember, social proof is a snowball effect. Once you get it rolling, it builds momentum all on its own.

Gain Trust
Quality. Quality. Quality. There is no bigger factor than providing quality content and work that keeps your audience engaged. Case studies, testimonials, services, webinars, even free products. Whatever you deliver, make sure it’s your best work. Guarantees go a long way here when you’re talking about products and/or services.

Don’t. Steal. Plagiarism is one of the most effective ways to destroy trust. Second only to lying. This goes back to Likeability and being authentic. If you make a mistake, admit it and apologize. Don’t ignore it or lie about it.

Keep the language approachable. If you talk down to your clients and customers, you’ll be treated with the same contempt you show them. There are enough alternatives out there that you’ll be passed by without a second thought. Keep your brand at the front of your mind whenever you are interacting with people.

Social media provides an opportunity to engage with your audience on a more personal level. How you use it will determine your effective social proof. Those individuals who trust you will share your content, provide word of mouth referrals, and become brand ambassadors for your business. There’s just no better way to #BeAwesome with your social media than to develop #SocialProof with your followers.

Be sure to Follow us and Let's Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+,YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.