AT&T Poll Reveals Importance of Online Marketing for Small Businesses

Male business owners are more likely to rely on their company website for marketing than female owners — 65 percent vs. 58 percent — while female business owners are more likely to rely on social media than their male counterparts — 48 percent vs. 34 percent.

via AT&T Poll Reveals Importance of Online Marketing for Small Businesses.

What do you think of these poll results? Do you agree? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


Big Brands Taking Over Twitter, Facebook at Expense of Small Biz?

Is it just me, or does it seem like Twitter and Facebook are squeezing the small business owner out of their networks as they chase ad revenues from companies like American Express, Nike and Coca-Cola?

I think Facebook’s recent addition of timeline for pages, and some new premium advertising platforms, that guarantee news feed distribution for up to 75 percent of a page’s fans, are going to benefit big brands because they have the deep pockets to sustain an ad campaign.

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10 Small Business Facebook Cover Photos

Has the latest Facebook change driven you to Google+ or Pinterest yet? 😉 Yes, Timeline arrived on Leap Day for Pages, and even though the mandatory switch doesn’t take place until March 30, I’m surprised at the number of businesses who have “leaped on board” already. (pardon the pun) I’m still in preview mode, but the pic above gives you a sneak peek. Even though I’m tempted to make the switch, I think it’s best to wait until all the bugs get worked out. After all, if Facebook Diva Mari Smith isn’t rushing in, why should I?
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SEO in a Minute: Twitter

Want more Twitter followers? You’ll learn the key steps to take in this SEO in a Minute video:

I’m Gloria Rand with today’s SEO in a Minute tip.

Want to know the secret to attracting Twitter followers? Use keywords that reflect your interests or business in your twitter username, your bio and in your tweets. My primary Twitter username is @gloriarand, so I created another profile to market my SEO copywriting services to the green products niche. That username is @GreenSEOcopy. If someone searches on Twitter for SEO, my username should come up.

Keywords are also useful to include in the bio section of your Twitter profile. Remember that you only have 160 characters to convey your business and personality, so make it concise!

The third place that often gets overlooked to include keywords is your tweets themselves. Whether you’re sharing a blog post or tweeting about an event you’re conducting, include relevant keywords so your tweets will show up when someone’s doing a search. If you’re tweeting quality information, people will start to follow you.

If you’d like more information on how to use Twitter to grow your business, visit my blog at gloriarand.me.


Facebook Removes “Share” Feature from Third-Party App Posts

Facebook logoThey’ve done it again! Facebook has removed the “share” feature from posts that come from third-party apps like Hootsuite. The scuttlebutt says this is to cut down on spam. Many businesses use third party apps to schedule posts ahead of time. Removing this feature will make it difficult for businesses to get their content shared – which is a big component of showing up in the News Feed. Small business owners, in particular, don’t have time to be on Facebook 24 hours a day – monitoring their pages. But there are people who say, “Good! Facebook wasn’t intended for business.” Well, guess what, folks? Facebook sure likes those ad dollars that businesses bring in!

Third-party Workaround

Hootsuite and NetworkedBlogs have designed a workaround to this problem. In the picture below, you’ll see that Hootsuite has added its own “Share” button. However, these shares don’t get included in Facebook Insights.
Hootsuite Share Button for Facebook

Facebook’s Decision – Crazy Smart or Simply Dumb?

As a Facebook admin for several client pages, this move is puzzling to me. A couple months back, Facebook “fixed the bug” that was hurting the Edge Rank of third-party posts. But it seems as if there might be an internal war going on over the ability to schedule posts rather than interacting on Facebook in real-time.

My feeling is that if Facebook continues down this path, they will be sending businesses right into the arms of an anxiously awaiting Google+. I guess, as the saying goes, “time will tell.”

What do you think of this development? Please share your comments below and on my Facebook page! I’d love to hear from you there too. Visit www.fb.com/gloriarandcopywriter to become a fan. As an added incentive, I’m giving away a free website analysis to my 500th fan. I only need 7 more fans to get there, so you better hurry!


How to Attract New Customers and Prospects

Want to attract new customers and prospects to your business? In this brief video, Toilet Paper Entrepreneur Mike Michalowicz shares some insight into how small business owners can do just that. Hint: It involves the two most influential words in the English language.

MikeMichalowicz’s Channel – YouTube.



Best Practices for Engaging Facebook Fans

[tweetmeme]Facebook logoSmall business owners – do you need some ideas for engaging with your Facebook fans? Here are some tips to help you better connect with your followers:

1. I Squared Or E Cubed

I post informative & inspiring articles (i squared) that my followers will enjoy/educate
and engage (e cubed).

Thanks to Mo Knowles of Mac-n-Mo’s

2. Provoke & Ask

Whether I post an inspiring quote, a motivational link or article, or promote self-care, I pose a provocative question and ask for a reaction, to be posted down below.

Thanks to Janet Grosshandler of Get Stronger, Girlfriend

3. Pimp Out Your Pets!

I engage my fans and get my content shared the most when I pimp out my cat “Missy Lee.” She’s cute, photogenic and smart (I post her best quotes). Using her picture with my content stops even the fastest Facebook crawler from scrolling down past her. I know that people stop because of entertainment value but they end up passing my content on based on the education value. Make ’em smile and they will share the love!

Thanks to Jennifer Lee of Coach Jenn Lee

4. Get To Know Them, Offer To Educate Them.

I first try to get to know them, where they work, the things they like and who our shared connections are. Then I reach out to them and ask if I can help them find clients in any way. I then try and educate them as to why my company is different and offer to show them by offering incentives such as buying lunch etc.. If it’s someone that I’m marketing to, I let them know that we are still one of the few companies that still maintain a million dollar professional insurance policy and follow-up!

Thanks to Rick Burns of Land-Tech Surveying & Mapping Corp.

5. Engagement From The Heart

When I give a little bit of what I see is wanted or needed out amongst the conversations on the net, I give a bit more back to raise the energy of that need. Re affirming we are all One , all in the same boat and supporting each other in growth of our neighbors businesses , will support our own businesses growth as well.
People looking out for each other, and aiming from the Heart space, speaks to many in an understandable, short, straight forth way.
Karen Rudolf, TranquilSOULtution

Thanks to Karen Rudolf of TranquilSOULutions, LLC

6. Share Useful Tips and Photos

Post snippets of what you do, such as helpful tips related to your industry, along with photos to create interest in your business.

Thanks to Aubrey Kahn of Firm Foundation Home Inspections

7. Music Rocks

Asking my fans what music they like has been very successful.

Thanks to Matt Rinkerman of Eagle Wine Advisors

8. Lighten Up!

We use humor in our FB posts. When “planking” was the thing to do on FB we created “monkeying around” and took a picture of the 3 of us in the office posed as the 3 monkeys: hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. If you haven’t liked us yet, check us out at Friends of Park Place Title on FB to see some of our antics. We also took pictures of us at a business expo dipping our feet in the hotel pool during lunch etc. We like to inform, but we also like to have fun too!

Thanks to Barbara Stewart of Park Place Title