Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Importance of Strategy & Implementation in Social Media

Strategy is very important with regard to social media marketing. I know that the first urge, when we hear about so many people/companies out there being successful in social media, is to go out and jump online and start mimicking those successful companies. Of course to replicate success is always a good idea, but that cannot be your only strategy. As overwhelming &/or time consuming as it may seem, it is very important to have a clear marketing plan for your business and for social media to be included in it. Even better if you have a social media specific marketing plan that complements your already existing marketing plan, yet works separately from it as needed.

The majority of social media experts, including myself, will tell you that a social media marketing plan and a strategy for executing that play are the two most important details for anyone desiring to be successful online. I have multiple clients past and present whom I've consulted for in the area of social media and I can tell you that those who have a plan & are working through a set strategy with which to execute their plan are the most successful and/or are moving forward in the fastest most successful manner. The clients who have no plan at all, who have a plan but allow themselves to be distracted by every attractive idea, who have no strategy with which to execute their plan or who are not sticking to that strategy are the least successful and the most stressed. It makes more sense not only for your business, but also for your peace of mind, that you go forward only with a plan and a strategy.


  1. BLOGGING - plan how frequently you will post to your blog(s), what your topics are during particular marketing phases (already in your marketing plan), then stick to that schedule.
  2. TWEETING - plan what you are going to tweet about & when you are going to tweet it, then stick with that schedule either via directly tweeting or auto-tweeting your tweets as you move forward during particular marketing phases.
  3. WRITING - (a bit different than blogging) - plan whether you will be posting articles, blogs, press releases, tweets, Facebook posts, Linkedin posts, articles to your email list or all of the above, plan where exactly all those posts will go, plan the frequency of the posts and then sit down to plan your personal writing schedule. Make sure you include proper time with which to write so that you can be sure to post to all these sources in a timely manner & so that you have plenty of content on hand for anything that may come up.
  4. ARTICLES - plan how frequently you will post articles, what your topics are during particular marketing phases, where you will post them, then stick to that schedule.
  5. GROUPS - plan which groups you will participate on via LinkedIn &/or Facebook, what topics you will be focusing on during particular marketing phases, join or create those groups as necessary, then stick with that schedule.
These are just a few of the many things you should consider when creating your social media marketing plan. If you don't have a marketing plan for your business or a social media marketing strategy to complement that plan, I'd suggest you get started creating both. There are plenty of great marketing companies out there that can assist you in creating a marketing plan and help you along the way. Of course, I can assist you in creating your social media marketing strategy &/or training regarding how to perform some of the tasks that relate to your strategy. If you need services be sure to email me via the contact me link in my profile page.

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Flying By The Seat Of Your Pants Will Always Result In A Crash Landing

I know what it is like to just be ready to go when you're starting something new in business or starting a new business all together. You know you have good products &/or services that are worth the money you want to charge for them. You know that you need and deserve the money that would come from the sale of those products and services. It's only natural to want nothing more than to jump at each and every chance to make those things start flowing out of your field of view so that the money you receive for them can start flowing in. I've seen it be done over and over again though, where company after company and individual after individual either motivated by excitement or by fear or anxiousness, jumps into selling without a real plan &/or without sticking to the plan they may have created.


  1. A planned marketing focus that goes as far out as possible on their calendar
  2. A play by play plan on how/when they are going to market each of the items on that marketing focus set out on a timeline as time moves forward
  3. A checks & balances system to insure that their promotional efforts are accurate, of good quality and aesthetically pleasing to the potential customer's eye. Paying attention to the details is very important.
  4. A priority list & plan for what steps to take if/when things change due to unforeseen circumstances
  5. A requirement that anything new that is added to the plan does not hinder that which is already in process and in place

I want you to imagine, for a moment, how things work in nature. If a particular species wishes to continue along in the world without becoming extinct, those capable of reproducing must take certain steps. A male cardinal, for example, must first begin doing the work of attracting his mate by eating properly, learning how to build a sturdy nest, getting the proper exercise, choosing a suitable location from which to attract his mate. Only after accomplishing those things will he be successful at attracting her. Once he has done all of that, he then begins to seek out the perfect female to produce with - it takes a bit of time, but eventually he will find a match and you can guarantee there will be no lack of competition, which is why his first steps will come in handy.

Upon choosing his target mate, he must then begin going step by step through the processes that will attract her to him above all others. He must, under all circumstances, stay focused upon that one target mate if he is to succeed. If he allows his focus to waiver, even for a moment, that is the moment his competition steps into the space he provided and takes the attention of his target. If he decides that his focus is on promiscuity and fun, rather than on spreading his product, then he becomes easily distracted by every female cardinal that flies by while he is in the midst of his mating ritual & in the end the likelihood of him having the chance to spread his product will be nothing more than a 50/50 toss-up between being a complete failure or merely a lucky fluke. The only logical time for that male cardinal to take his focus off of his primary target is either when he reaches the extreme of failure or success. Only then must he move on to the next target. If he focuses on too many things at once, he will never have the time or energy to complete them all with any sort of success.

This is exactly what you must do in your own online marketing situation. Prepare yourself for attracting your target customer/niche. Get a website up, Create a way to collect email addresses, Create an email distribution schedule to communicate with those on your list, Know your audience and plan relevant topics to share with them, Create a blog, Create Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, LinkedIn accounts & pages, YouTube Channels etc. and plan exactly what will best attract your target customer/niche on each of those channels. Stay focused on your plan and your niche only changing when your target niche changes or when an unforeseen circumstance occurs where you have no choice but to cancel your focus.

There is a certain maturity that customers expect when working with someone in business & more than that, it is the logical and linear flow of nature that we must follow a plan in order to continue with success. When I consider those who are just living life without a solid plan that takes priority, those who are easily distracted from one thing to the next based on not much more than a goal of finding the quickest path to being satisfied & happy - the first thing that comes to mind is the image of a toddler crying over their mom leaving them at daycare and their caregiver dangling a toy in front of them. The speed at which they lose their focus on keeping their mother there, is a direct reflection of just how quickly their mom is willing to leave. In business no one wants to be a toddler - our goal is to be mature in business and proceed with a linear, logical approach to a focused plan. I urge you all to set a clear plan & keep yourself informed on the time & energy it may take for you or your staff to complete that plan with any success before allowing yourself to be distracted by everything that someone dangles before you as a potentially satisfactory tool.

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Thursday, June 09, 2011

Fear & Loathing in Social Media - How Attitude Can Contribute To Your Success

I hear day in and day out from my clients (especially those just beginning their trek into the world of social media) that they feel overwhelmed, they don't see the point, they are frustrated, that social media and all it entails is scary. I can understand this to some extent. After all, it is new to them, and most people have an adverse reaction to change and all things new. I can't blame them, I myself am sometimes fearful of new things - there have been plenty of times when I just wanted to give up, throw in the towel and work a regular job where I could live on the surface, oblivious to change and just go with the flow. Somehow every time those feelings come up - something deeper comes rushing in immediately following the fear. There comes a knowing that I am meant for something bigger, something better - that I am here for a bigger purpose than simple customer service or administrative tasks.

It's that knowing - that inner voice that pushes me forward through the fear and onto stable ground. I think all of my clients have that same knowing. It's why they keep going past the fear and frustration and keep trying. All of us have a connection to something bigger - we know we are supposed to do something... No... BE SOMETHING that will change the world. We know that it isn't our ego that fuels our desire to BE THAT CHANGE as much as it is our ego that feeds the fear of that change we know is coming.

All that said, I wanted to take the time to write this post for the sole (or should I say SOUL) purpose of reminding you of the spiritual concept that exists in almost every path. We bring back to us the exact thing we put out. This doesn't mean if I give a sandwich to someone I'll get a sandwich back tomorrow - it means that if I give a sandwich to someone with fear in my heart that I may be giving up my last sandwich, I will sit tomorrow in fearful wonder of when I will eat again. We all know the motivational phrases that come through various spiritual teachings, but how often do we LIVE those phrases. How often do we focus directly on the how, rather than the energy, of the task no matter what that task may be? It is the energy we put forth in combination with our actions that really sets things in motion. Our energy in each action is like the Butterfly Effect creating energetic ripples that not only affect our own lives but the whole world. So my question to you is why fear? Why allow yourself to fear what social media brings? I would suggest instead that you focus on excitement and possibility or even better... on that knowing within you that pushes you forward in every other area. Focus on your divine purpose and use social media as simply an additional tool you use to change your world, so that you can change everyone else's world.

Fear breeds fear, loathing breeds loathing, frustration breeds frustration and so on and so on. Is that what you want to build as your foundation as you spread your purpose across the globe? I'd suggest that you let go of the fear and start with the things you know actually work to manifest what you want for yourself. If you put out the energy of fear in your marketing process, then you will become easily swayed from one thing to the next as you try to scrap for a piece of the pie. If you put out the energy of love & peace, it allows you to operate logically and enables you to see more clearly the steps that truly need to be taken in your process, so that you may assess what will and won't work without worry over whether or not you will waste your time. It is no surprise that the clients I mentioned who question and fear while working hard to accomplish things are just simply treading water in their business, while the ones who have taken the time to set their energies and attitudes in the beginning, as a part of the creation process for their marketing plan are moving forward at a steady pace. Which group would you rather be in? The success of the journey is entirely up to you!

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Tuesday, June 07, 2011

4 Great Client Attraction Tips For Social Media

What is the point of social media? Does it make any sense to spend hours of your time each week online just talking to no one but yourself or broadcasting into space with no focus? I'd say no! I'm not sure about you, but I definitely don't have time to spend even one second just talking to myself - I can do that while I'm working!!!

When I first joined the social media world it was for personal connections, not just to be talking. By creating those sincere and consistent connections I created my rankings (now in the top 1% individuals in social media across the globe) and eventually a career. The point of social media is not to broadcast - it's to engage & connect in a way that is mutually beneficial for you and those you connect with.


It is important that you add value to the lives of those who read your posts and come in contact with. You know just like I do, that the world is a busy place - much too busy for us to spend time on something that isn't adding value and benefiting us in some way. Make sure that what you share adds value without cost to your customers at least 80% of the time and then make sure that whatever you sell to them the other 20% of the time is also something of value.

Reach out to your customers and connections. Do not just broadcast all your promotions and views to the world without interactions and reaching out. Spend a little time each week looking at what others post (even sharing it when it's relevant to your niche), comment on their posts or just say hello or happy birthday on their wall in a sincere way. Re-Tweet what others are posting on Twitter (when it will benefit your target niche), reply to great tweets posted by others & interact with those who Re-Tweet your stuff. Make true and sincere contact with people you meet just as you would if you were at a physical networking event. No one likes a narcissist or a wall-flower at a networking event and that is just what social media is - A 24/7 online global networking event. Find your niche and get to networking!!

When your customers, contacts, potential customers ask for help, do what you can. Do you have advice? Perhaps you have a connection you could put them in contact with who can help them. Zappos is a perfect example of this - they make millions of dollars online and have only increased that income after they began helping their customers locate products online that they themselves do not even sell. Their customer service reps take turns sitting at the help desk making sure to answer questions pointing their customers and followers to companies that can help them. It's just a simple, sincere approach to helping their customers & potential customers that establishes them as someone everyone can trust who isn't too busy worshiping the all mighty dollar to help someone out without expectation now and then. The same thing can work for you if you just spend a bit of time helping when you can.

When posting online whether it be on your website, your blog, your YouTube channel, FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn or any other social media or online forum, make sure to use keywords in your content. By keywords, I don't just mean keywords that will be relevant to your particular target niche, but keywords that have been tested to show results online. There are simple searches you can do to figure out which keywords may work best for what you are trying to say & they are free via Google. Use the tools at Google to improve your keywords every chance you get. My personal preference is to write my content first and then use the keyword tool at Google to tweak my words and change them here and there for better effect.

These are some great tools to assist you in your process of reaching your customers and potential customers in the online social media forums and to assist you in bringing them home to your email lists in a way that will be beneficial to both you as an individual as well as your financial stability. Be sure to email me or contact me via my brand new Fan Page if you have any questions. I'd be happy to help answer them, research them and give any assistance possible.

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Monday, June 06, 2011

Social Media And Customer Engagement

When considering social media and customer engagement there are a multitude of factors to consider, but in general the three most important things are sincerity, frequency & relevance.

We've already covered in past newsletters how important it is to make sure at least 80% of what you post online will add value to the lives of those reading your posts without directly selling them something. We've also covered how the majority of what you post needs to be relevant and applicable to your niche, while at the same time working to establish you as an expert in that niche. These are important things to remember with regards to posting and are almost equally important with regard to engagement of your customers and potential customers. Customer engagement is the bread and butter of online marketing these days and requires not only consistent participation from your customers/potential customers, but also, your consistent and sincere interaction with them.


  • SINCERITY - All things posted by you or your employees/representatives must be sincere. Not only does this make sense on a human and spiritual level (you are a spiritual entrepreneur after all), but also on a marketing level. The buying trends in the last few years have grown toward relationships involving trust and away from those which do not. This is why brands must actively, directly and sincerely engage with their customers. Not only must you establish yourself as a sincere and trustworthy expert to your current customers, but you must also do this with your potential ones. Statistics show that over 60% of buyers won't buy without a testimonial from someone they trust and that number is steadily growing day by day. You have no choice but to build trust online - whether that be with current customers or potential ones - it's a fate that you cannot escape if you wish to make it in business.

  • FREQUENCY - In order to successfully reach and engage with your customers/potential customers, you must be there consistently communicating with them (notice I said WITH them not to them - engagement is a two way street). It is important to remember that with online marketing the market is expanded worldwide so you are reaching people on a global scale. This means that you must be aware of the fact that there are potential customers to reach 24/7. That said, I would suggest that you post to your FaceBook fanpage at least 4 times each day, that you blog at least 2 times per week (if not more), that you post to twitter at least 20-25 times each day, that you post/interact on a LinkedIn group at least 2 times weekly & that (if/when applicable) you post on YouTube a minimum of once monthly if not more. If that sounds a little overwhelming, don't worry, there are a multitude of free tools you can use that will assist you in auto-posting so you can work, sleep and live while your social media is running in the background. I will likely post about those in the future, but if you'd like to set an appointment to go over some of these feel free to email me.

  • RELEVANCE - We all have a plethora of interests and therefore it's easy to want to share things about all of them. In online marketing, however, this is not a sensible thing to do. The key in your online forums is to have as targeted an audience as possible to increase your email lists and customers. This cannot be done if you post about random things every day that don't relate to your particular niche. Keep that in mind when you are sharing links and updates or liking/favoriting things online. It is fine to post things that may be political or controversial if you are a spiritual entrepreneur, or to post products you use, books you read, articles you are interested in etc. - but just keep in mind that all these things need to fit into two categories: A - they must be relevant to your niche while providing something of value they can use & B - They must not compete with your business in any way.
These three points should help you in establishing your presence online, being consistent in your marketing focuses and processes & engaging customers in your target niche. Be sure to email me via the contact link when viewing my full profile or ask a question on my brand new Fan page if you'd like to know more.

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Sunday, June 05, 2011

The Blah Blah Blah of Online Sales

How many times have you been sitting at dinner when the phone rings and you pick it up only to hear a sales pitch being blasted in your ear? We all know how it starts - the peppy introduction, the insincere "how are you doing?", the lame "I'm a regular guy just like you" joke and then..... THE PITCH. What do we do? We keep telling them no - do they listen? NO. They keep going and going and going & eventually you simply tune them out until you find the opportunity for another no and a take me off your list.

I remember seeing the cartoon below in a book when I was a kid and thinking "that's how I feel when my dad is talking to me". This all too familiar scene is the same whether it's a parent and his teenage daughter or a person in an online social media platform trying to convince everyone to purchase their product. Keep this in mind when you are about to pitch something and remember that no one wants to hear sales language whether on the phone or when they're reading it online.

What is sales language?... Simple - It's any language that includes a pitch of some sort - sales, marketing, campaigns, verticals, leveraging etc. These are all examples of things that use sales language. Sales language generally serves only to alienate your potential customer rather than actually sell them, & the only time it really succeeds in this day and age, is when the net is cast so wide that it simply can't help but to scoop up a few fish as a default of the numbers game. We all have an inner lie detector that goes on immediately when we know we are being pitched to, that has us seeking out the thing within the pitch that makes it too good to be true. When that "too good to be true-o-meter" goes off (which happens quickly) you've lost your audience, and have become just like that time share salesman who looks up after talking for 2 hours, only to realize that no one is in the room and he's been talking to the dust mites.

Just remember, online marketing in social media is all about engagement, interaction and value. Those things don't come from you posting your events, products and services out the wazoo on your pages, and they surely don't come from you blocking people from commenting or posting on those same pages. Your level of interaction and sincere engagement with your potential customers about things of value related to your niche, is going to be directly reflective of your level of success with social media marketing.

Always remember that the person who posts their own views without interaction with others, or the person who's only emails to people are about their own products, events and services is no different than the telemarketer with the lame joke on the end of your phone during dinner. Just like you tune that telemarketer out - your followers and friends will do the same to you - that's why FaceBook has the option to hide people from your news feed and many other platforms have similar capabilities. Don't be deluded into thinking that because you are posting everyone is reading what you have to say. If you are just posting sales lingo posts and/or are blocking people from engaging your page, you're most likely like the time share salesman who looks up to find he's talking to the air because I can guarantee you that most people are simply hiding your posts from their view.

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Saturday, June 04, 2011

Thinking Outside The Box - Attraction Marketing

When most of us think of marketing, we think of standard methods, thinking and techniques. We've been conditioned to think this way like Pavlov's dogs. We have to consider, though, whether or not these techniques are in line with what it is we truly are. Are these techniques in line with who we are, what we believe, our purpose, or what we envision the world becoming?

I was lucky when I began my foray into the world of social media because I didn't begin my journey for the purpose of marketing. I was merely seeking a place in the world. That purpose is the reason that I came to understand that the market for something to believe in is infinite and social media is where the human race is going to find their connection, their something to believe in, their hope. The internet is to some extent, today's way of rebuilding the Tower of Babel, a way to connect, a way to seek unity, a tangible recognition of humanity as one, and this social connection puts an extremely high value on engagement, trust, sincerity and testimonials from those in their network who exude those traits. These are the reasons we now have to begin thinking out of the box in our marketing techniques & the reasons I believe that Spiritual Entrepreneurs have the biggest potential to make change (& dollars) on the internet.

As a Spiritual Entrepreneur, you are already thinking outside the box on most levels. What you believe your intent and purpose in the world to be, is completely out of the standard box. Most Spiritual Entrepreneurs want to connect with people at a heart, mind and soul level rather than just approaching people from the standard position of fear and scarcity. You know that what people are looking for is hope, or at least if you don't know that is what they are seeking, you know it's what they need. People want something to believe in, they want hope, they want unity, they want to belong to something bigger than themselves, they want to be happy and to live lives of purpose, and you understand that. You yourself are striving for the same thing. Those desires and connection to a bigger purpose are what makes you a good friend, a good leader, a good teacher etc. Those traits that make you good in those areas are the same exact traits you need to be displaying online.

Think of your online connections on the same level you think of your friends, your family, your students etc. The point is, that if you think of them in this way, you will be sincere with them and you will share with them, give them advice, help them with whatever you can, share stories with them regarding things that have improved your quality of life etc. This is what we do with our friends and it is no different with our online connections. It is true that many of them may not actually be your friends, but that doesn't mean that you can't share with them as if they are. I don't mean tell them your private business or give them your home number and address - I mean be sincere, sell to them only 1% more than you sell to your real friends when you go out to dinner or coffee. Establish yourself in their hearts as a sincere, trustworthy and knowledgeable expert in your niche who is willing to share not just a bit of your time, but the truest essence of who you are.

Use social media to connect to the integrity of the human race & mirror it back to those you connect with online in a way that allows their spirits to be renewed.

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