Social Media

Facebook Ad Revenue Sees Huge Growth Driven by Mobile Success

Forrester flat out says Facebook marketing doesn't work. The Atlantic questions whether any Internet advertising is effective at all.They must be feeling silly right about now. Clearly, someone is clicking those Facebook ads. A whole lot of people, it seems.Facebook just announced over $2.9 billion in revenue for the second quarter of 2014, a whopping 61% percent gain over the same period last year.

Advertising accounted for $2.68 billion of their total income, with mobile advertising responsible for 62% of the total advertising take. Over 1.5 million advertisers are now using their service, said Sheryl Sandberg.The social giant did manage to keep GAAP costs and expenses growth at a lower rate despite their astronomical revenue growth, up just 22% over Q2 2013. Overall, Facebook's GAAP net... > Read more

July 24, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 2

Social Media Images Guide: Optimizing Images For Facebook, Twitter, & More!

Good visual content is a key component of online marketing. Posting pictures and illustrations on social media networks helps brands boost engagement and get noticed by fans.Our social media images guide seeks to provide you with everything you need to know about using images on social networks. We’ll be covering:Where to get free social media imagesOptimizing images for dimensions and sizing on various social networksTechniques for using images creatively on social mediaWhere to Get Social Media ImagesWhen it comes to using images online, it’s best to play it safe by using social media images that are under a creative commons license.

What is a creative commons license?Creative Commons licenses let creators easily choose a simple license that communicates which rights to their content... > Read more

July 09, 2014     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 4

Social Sharing Secrets: 15 Ways to Get More Shares ASAP!

Social media sharing is a big aim for many businesses looking to build their brand, extend their reach, and generally make the most of their online marketing efforts. So how do you rack in the likes, tweets, pins, and +1s? Here are 15 super social sharing secrets to keep you basking in the lime light of adoring online fans.

Image courtesy of kanate of FreeDigitalPhotos.net1. Ask people to share your content. The first step is admitting you need help. It sounds like such an obvious no-brainer, but it really does make a difference. Make a point of asking for social shares, and you’ll be more likely to get them.For example, some sites use a pop-up that says "If you liked this post, share it on Facebook!" It's a gentle reminder to (social) share the love.2. Make great content people want... > Read more

June 19, 2014     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 7

Facebook Organic Reach Rapidly Approaching Zero

The organic reach of brand content on Facebook is rapidly dwindling, to the point you can expect it to peter out to nothing in the coming months.Facebook began restricting the organic reach of Page content in 2012 and has since seemingly given up on telling marketers they aren't going to have to pay to play.

In fact, Ogilvy cites anonymous "Facebook sources" as telling community managers they can expect Facebook organic reach to plunge to absolutely nothing in the foreseeable future.In their analysis of more than 100 brand pages in February 2014, Social@Ogilvy found that Facebook’s organic reach is just 6%, with large pages over 500,000 followers seeing just 2% reach. (Meaning, the bigger your brand, the more you're being pressured toward paid content.) These numbers are rapidly in decli... > Read more

March 12, 2014     |   Written by: Miranda Miller   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 4

Facebook's News Feed Algorithm Change: What It Means For Your Facebook Marketing Strategy

Facebook turned 10 this month! This seems like a birthday worth celebrating as we have all watched Facebook grow from an exclusive college-only social club to a social platform dominating the internet and connecting the entire world through likes, pokes, and shares. I remember several years back peering over my sister’s shoulders while she used dial-up internet to connect to this mysterious thing called Facebook on the family computer, which resembled an oversized microwave and weighed more than my dog (who was not “health-conscious”).

The Today Show’s Savannah Guthrie recently interviewed Zuckerberg and asked if headlines like “Facebook’s For Your Grandma” bother him, but why should they? As Zuckerberg pointed out, “We pay attention to every demographic in every country.”... > Read more

February 21, 2014     |   Written by: Margot daCunha   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 10

45 Fabulous Facebook Advertising Tips & Magic Marketing Tricks

We've got a huge collection of tips and pointers for mastering Facebook advertising and marketing. We'll be covering...Facebook Advertising 101: General Tips & TricksFacebook Advertising Budgeting & Bidding Tips: How to Control Costs4 Ways to Create More Engaging Image Ads with Facebook Advertising7 Secrets for Better Facebook Ad Targeting20 Facebook Marketing Tips: Posts and Promotions to Help Your BusinessFacebook Advertising Tips 101: 11 Basic TipsWe're starting off our Facebook Advertising & Marketing Guide with some general tips and tricks for advertising on Facebook.

Learn to select your campaign objectives, use various Facebook advertising formats for different needs, control the costs of advertising on Facebook, and more.1.  Go in with established goals. Do you wan... > Read more

January 30, 2014     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 44

6 Social Media Marketing Strategies to Drastically Improve Your Efforts in 2014

Did you know social media is the number one daily activity among Americans, topping time spent on email and Google?According to Fast Company, 93% of marketers use social media to promote their business.Social media is BIG and only getting bigger. If you are not marketing on it, you are likely missing a large chunk of your target consumers.

As a product of the Mark Zuckerberg generation, it is easy to understand why people are so obsessed with social media; for marketers, the potential to grow their business via these networks is endless. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+ – these are some of the prime networks every company, big or small, young or established, needs to have an active presence on. It is now inexcusable for any business that wants to thrive to not be tweeting!... > Read more

January 09, 2014     |   Written by: Margot daCunha   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 74

Do Twitter Ads Work? Comparing the Ad Performance of The World's Largest Social Networks

Twitter vs. Facebook: Comparing the Ad Performance of the World’s Largest Social NetworksTwitter’s initial public offering (IPO) is approaching, and Twitter just raised its price range to $23-$25, suggesting it’s feeling optimistic about the outcome. Investors may be a little more nervous though.

According to polls, just 35% of Americans think buying Twitter stock is a good idea, whereas 51% of Americans thought Facebook stock was a good idea before its IPO last May.As for me, I’m not planning to buy any Twitter stock. I’ve always said that Facebook makes a weak showing when it comes to ad performance for direct response marketing (lead generation), especially compared to comparable offerings from Google. But what about Facebook vs. Twitter? The fact is, Facebook ads have improve... > Read more

November 05, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 12

Buy Facebook Fans! They’re Worth $174 More than Non-Fans On Average!

According to the internet, a Facebook fan is worth $174.I imagine this was Zuck-dawg’s first response to the news.Every month, 12,100 people search on the keyword [buy Facebook fans], and there are two types of people who search for this query that worry me. The first type is someone who believes that the number of Facebook fans they have is a measure of Facebook marketing success.

Then there are those who make a living off of people who hold those beliefs. These people are necessary in any marketing function, but it becomes a problem when they lose track of the true value behind what a Facebook ”like” is supposed to stand for.In today’s post, I’ll be breaking down the misconceptions we hold about the value of a Facebook fan on your brand page, including three questions to ask ab... > Read more

October 29, 2013     |   Written by: Victor Pan   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 6

Facebook Graph Search & Privacy Concerns: Should You Be Worried?

What is Facebook Graph Search?Facebook Graph Search first launched in March 2013, allowing users to search for people, photos, places, and interests within the Facebook search engine. Facebook Graph Search provides custom search results based on your own personal data, including information in the profiles of your friends.

As you type a search query, Facebook Graph Search auto-completes the query, suggesting friendships through existing connections, Facebook pages, and apps, before finally providing web results.New Facebook Graph Search: Now With More Stalking Power!In recent months, Facebook developers have made Graph Search even more powerful, now capable of providing results on searches for:status updatesphoto captionscommentscheck-insThe updated Facebook Graph Search can also search fo... > Read more

October 24, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 12

Find Your Old Tweets: How to See Your First (Worst?) Tweet

Can’t remember what your first tweet was? It was probably “Hello world!” or “Is this thing on?” or “I finally joined Twitter, am I doing it right” or “Twitter sucks,” but if you want to know for sure, you’ll need to dig back into your archives.Unfortunately, Twitter only displays your last 3200 tweets in your timeline, so if you’re anything like me (I’ve been on Twitter since May 2009 and have well over 40,000 tweets), that won’t cut it.

Here are the two easiest ways to find your oldest tweets, including your first tweet. (I promise these work – a lot of the methods and tools you’ll find in the Google results don’t.)How to Find Your Old Tweets Using Twitter SearchOpen up Twitter.com and go to the search bar:Type in the following string but with your username ... > Read more

October 10, 2013     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 25

The Complete Guide to Yelp Reviews: Power to the People!

Yelp has become the most popular Internet rating and review site since its initial inception in 2004. Yelp founders saw that word-of-mouth was a powerful purveyor of new customers, but with the classic local community structure breaking apart in an online era, how could individuals know which businesses to trust? Yelp was the answer – an online review site in which customers shared their experiences, helping others make informed decisions about restaurants, auto-repair shops, and more.

Many review sites have come and gone, but Yelp has continued to be the most trusted source for local business reviews and ratings. Why? Yelp noticed that other review sites are far too cluttered with spam and ads, so they’ve kept theirs to a minimum. Yelp also focuses on long-form reviews rather than... > Read more

July 22, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 28

How to Find, Follow and Connect with Social Media Influencers

With the introduction of Google+ authorship, it’s quickly becoming important in the world of SEO and social media to demonstrate who you know. Not only do users want to see that you are connected with industry leaders, but Google wants to see this as well. The more advanced blogs where your content appears and the more advanced people that share your content, the better chance your content has to succeed.

In short, you want to be able to connect with influencers—people in your industry who are well respected, widely published, speak at important conventions, have a success story, etc.— so that you can someday become an influencer yourself. It won’t happen overnight, but there are ways to slowly break into the world of the experts.How to Track Influencers with Google+ RipplesOne of t... > Read more

June 21, 2013     |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 5

Short-Form Social Video Posting: Vine Vs. Tout

[Editor's note: Today we have a video post, in the spirit of Whiteboard Friday. Check out the short video or, if you prefer, read the transcript below.] Video Transcript:How long should your video be? People all over the internet have been asking this for ages! For a long time, the idea was that shorter was better, but recent evidence suggests that long-form videos are now proving more popular, and even YouTube and Vimeo are prioritizing this video content in their search rankings.

However, Tout and Vine are looking to move the trend back to short video. And when I say short, I mean short. Tout offers 15-second video posts, while Vine (from Twitter) offers 6 seconds. The concept of the platforms is to allow only “clips” or video snapshots, rather than long-winded or over-produced c... > Read more

June 18, 2013     |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 3

12 Alternatives to Buying Pinterest Followers: Put Away Your Wallet, We've Got a Better Way

Due to the popularity of last month’s post discussing the pros and cons of buying Twitter followers, we’re tackling another contender – Pinterest.Pinterest has become the internet’s photo-sharing darling since its explosion onto the social scene in 2011. Pinterest has become a haven for recipe swappers, DIY enthusiasts, designers, and more.

Some of the most popular Pinterest users get their content shared thousands of times a day, and a high number of followers serves as a green light for other users debating who to follow.A user’s number of Pinterest followers is another internet glamour metric, similar to Twitter followers. Just as with Twitter, having an army of inactive followers won’t do you much good, since on Pinterest the real value comes from repins, comments, and liki... > Read more

June 10, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 15

Social Media Management Tools: What’s the Right Tool for Your Business?

Why is Social Media Management Important?With so many different social media sites to post, share articles, and track engagement on, finding a reliable social media management tool to help streamline your social media tasks is pretty essential.Social media managing tools can help marketers save time, stay organized, and optimize their efficiency.

Today we’re looking at some of the top contenders for social media management systems. While some overlap, each has its own advantages and disadvantages. This guide should help you determine which tool is the best fit for your business.Social Media Management Tool ReviewsThe pricing design of these social tools is fairly consistent – there’s usually a set of plans ranging from the cheapest and most basic, to the more expensive and advanced. C... > Read more

May 23, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 22

How to Measure the ROI of Social Media (No, it's Not Impossible!)

Measuring the success of various campaigns is a core aspect of a marketer’s job. It’s essential to see how your marketing efforts are contributing to the business’s bottom line. Yet according to Social Media Today, 70% of online businesses that utilize social media don’t bother to measure ROI.

It’s pretty shocking to discover that the majority of online businesses are conducting their social media marketing completely in the dark, with no clues as to how social media contributes to the success of their businesses. To be fair, it’s not entirely their fault – social media ROI is a difficult beast to tame, the bane of marketers around the world.Why is Measuring Social Media ROI Difficult?Some say that measuring the ROI of social media simply can’t be done! Like traditional bill... > Read more

April 25, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 23

7 Ways to Use Facebook for Marketing

Facebook continues to be the reigning champ of social media sites, as the #1 spot where friends connect and share online. More than just a meeting place for friends, Facebook has grown into a venue for businesses to market themselves through interaction with customers and self-promotion.In this post we will be looking at seven ways you can use Facebook for marketing.

Whether you’re a big corporation or a small local biz, Facebook is a powerful marketing tool – it’s a great space to keep customers informed, develop brand identity, and broaden your reach.1. Making the Most of Your Facebook Business PageA Facebook page is a great free marketing tool for businesses. These pages let businesses identify themselves – not just through listing product offerings and services, but also by shar... > Read more

April 15, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 45

#Bashtag: Avoiding User Outcry in Social Media

It wasn’t the first corporate blunder in social media, but it was one of the scariest (or funniest, depending on how you look at it). In January of 2012, McDonalds created the Twitter hashtag #McDStories, inviting followers to “meet some of the hard-working people dedicated to providing McDs with quality food every day.

”Rather than embracing the positive personal stories the restaurant was trying to promote, Twitter users came up with their own stories—and they weren’t so nice.While social media gives your company the chance to promote itself, as well as an outlet to give customers extra information, the downside is that users can easily turn against you like the situation with this McDonalds “bashtag.”With some self-awareness and a willingness to care about your followers ra... > Read more

March 08, 2013     |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 3

Guide to Using LinkedIn Company Pages: Get Followers, Share Stories, Post Products

LinkedIn is the leading social networking site for professionals, so most business-to-business (B2B) companies should be putting serious energy into their Company Pages on LinkedIn.With recent renovations to the LinkedIn Company Pages, there’s more room for creativity and innovation when it comes to connecting both with other businesses and with consumers.

Here’s what your business needs to know.Why LinkedIn Is Worth Your TimeLinkedIn sometimes feels like the nerdy, awkward cousin of the cooler social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. LinkedIn spends a lot of its time organizing its pen protectors by color and enjoys making Excel charts in its spare time. Although social media socialites might feel inclined to give LinkedIn the cold shoulder, the business professional networking s... > Read more

February 25, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 13

6 Accounts to Follow on Pinterest (And What You Can Learn From Them)

 Whenever you are looking to improve or gain mastery in a particular area, it is always smart to carefully examine the practices of those who are already doing a top-notch job. You can learn so much just by picking the brains of existing experts – our ongoing Ask The PPC Experts interview series continues to be popular.

Social media networks like Pinterest are no exception – looking at how others successfully use social media in a creative way will help you spark your own masterful ideas.Today we are looking at six unique Pinterest accounts and assessing what these Pinterest users are doing that sets them apart from the pack. Learn from them, and you’ll probably witness improvement. With better referral rates than Google+ LinkedIn, and YouTube combined, Pinterest is a social med... > Read more

January 28, 2013     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 15

Why I'm Unimpressed with the Facebook Graph Search Announcement

Facebook today announced a new product called Facebook Graph Search, now in beta.Unlike Google and other web search engines, Facebook Graph Search will allow users to find Facebook-only content in four main areas (example queries from the Facebook press release below):People: “friends who live in my city,” “people from my hometown who like hiking,” “friends of friends who have been to Yosemite National Park,” “software engineers who live in San Francisco and like skiing," "people who like things I like," "people who like tennis and live nearby"Photos: “photos I like,” “photos of my family,” “photos of my friends before 1999,” "photos of my friends taken in New York," “photos of the Eiffel Tower”Places: “restaurants in San Francisco,” “cities visited by m... > Read more

January 15, 2013     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 8

Psy Defeats Bieber: “Gangnam Style” Takes Best in Show for Most Viral Video of All Time!

Congratulations to Psy and his legendary k-pop sensation, “Gangnam Style,” which as of today, November 24, 2012, is the most viewed video of all time on YouTube, beating out the former reigning champ, Justin Bieber’s “Baby.”“Gangnam Style” has become the most viral YouTube video of all time, obtaining unprecedented worldwide attention and breaking social and viral records left and right.

With the recent M.C. Hammer mash-up broadcast at the American Music Awards, the “Gangnam Style” craze is still going strong, but for how long?To commemorate this momentous day in internet pop-culture history, I'm releasing a new infographic, “Psy vs. Bieber: ‘Gangnam Style’ Takes Best in Show for Top YouTube Video of All Time”, which puts Psy’s “Gangnam Style” head-to-head a... > Read more

November 23, 2012     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 8

The Best Tweets of All Time: Our List of the Most Important, Record-Breaking Tweets Ever

The social media site Twitter, in only a few short years, has managed to forever change the way generations of people communicate. Whether sharing breaking news, announcing political victories, or mourning the deaths of our heroes, Twitter has become an integral part of the social landscape.We’ve made a list of the top tweets of all time – not just the most retweeted tweets (those titles are held almost exclusively by celebrities), but also the history-changing tweets, the momentous twitter events, and the minute messages that reflect just how much can be said in only 140 characters.

WordStream presents you the best tweets ever.The Best Tweets Ever:ObamaMarsPhoenixMount EverestOccupy WallStreetCrime FightingAnthony WeinergateBP Oil SpillKennethColeOld SpiceOprahCharlie SheenJustin Bieb... > Read more

November 08, 2012     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 4

Vanity URL: What It Is, How To Get One, & Why Your Life Is Worse Without Them

Vanity URLs have been long misunderstood, for good reason.Table of ContentsWhat Is a Vanity URL?7 Reasons and 13 Examples of Why Vanity URLS Are AwesomeHow We Got Our Google Plus Vanity URLWordStream's Obligatory Google Custom URL CelebrationWhen we got our Google + vanity URL before Wordstream Technologies, Wordstream Publishing, and Wordstream the game, it was a moment of celebration.

We were about to get an unfair advantage over our competitors with our newly acquired gplus vanity URL. Try searching any brand with a vanity Google URL and you will find that the Google knowledge graph will showcase you over other brands. i.e. Delta Airlines What is a Vanity URL?Vanity URL Definition: A vanity URL is an unique web address that is branded for marketing purposes.Vanity URLs are a t... > Read more

October 11, 2012     |   Written by: Victor Pan   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 13

Advertiser Claims 80% of Facebook Ad Clicks are From Bots

Last month, we reported that the click-through rates on Facebook Ads average a dismal 0.04%, which is approximately 10x less than the equivalent display ad on the Google Display Network.Today, e-commerce store builder Limited Run is claiming that 80% of the clicks paid for could not be verified! The company is so unhappy with the results on recent Facebook ad tests, they're deleting their Facebook page entirely.

Limited Run claimed that 80% of clicks that they were being charged for came from users who didn’t have JavaScript turned on. As of late 2010 the number of users who did not have JavaScript turned on in the US was only 2%. Seeing this information, Limited Run allegedly built their own analytics software that found 80% of the clicks were coming from bots. The company claims bots we... > Read more

July 30, 2012     |   Written by: Larry Kim   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 9

I Love Twitter's New Weekly Email and You Should Too

Twitter, God love them, tends to be a little slow on the uptake as far as social networks go. It’s been around for about six years, but Twitter has been notoriously slow about adding new features and improving the functionality of its website. For example, it took years for the company to build in a “retweet” button (and the way they built it initially was not well received); it acquired TweetDeck in May 2011, but has kept TweetDeck as a separate application with its own brand rather than integrating those awesome features into Twitter itself.

About a month ago, Twitter sent out an email to users announcing some updates and policy changes. First among those changes: “A new weekly email that delivers the most interesting news and items you might have missed from the people ... > Read more

June 18, 2012     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 1

Duh: Study Reveals Your Facebook Fans Like You More Than Random People

 The New York Times just published an Associated Press snippet under the extremely misleading headline "ComScore Study Says Facebook Ads Effective."Larry passed me the link, and we both wondered briefly if Facebook had commissioned a study to "prove" that their ads are in fact effective (since our recent research suggests that Facebook ads are not effective compared to other online display ad networks).

However, if you read the story, it doesn't even appear to be about ads (emphases mine):The report released Tuesday found that people who were fans of Starbucks and Target, or friends of those fans, were more likely to make a purchase than a control group that were not fans.The comScore study comes a day after the research firm said that the number of unique visitors to Facebook's websit... > Read more

June 12, 2012     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 9

Pinterest Marketing Guide: How to Use Pinterest to Boost Your Brand

The potential marketing advantages of Pinterest have been well documented recently, as the fledgling social sharing site boosts traffic and sales for niche retailers like Etsy. Pinterest is serious business.Regardless of your personal feelings for Pinterest (huge time waster or glorious godsend?), it’s impossible to deny the marketing opportunities ripe for the picking! Read on to find out why.

Why Developing a Pinterest Marketing Plan is Worth Your TimePinterest has shown remarkable marketing potential as some sites begin to receive more referral traffic from Pinterest than social media heavyweight Twitter.Some quick Pinterest marketing statistics and facts as we get started:Pinterest is dominated by women, with 90% of users being female21% of users have purchased something they found on... > Read more

May 01, 2012     |   Written by: Megan Marrs   |   Posted In: Social Media   |   Comments: 9

Facebook Buys Instagram for $1 Billion … But Why?

Last week, waaay at the bottom of my post on the ethics of search, I included a couple of links to articles about Instagram culture. The photo-sharing app had just been made available on Android OS, which had a lot of Android users cheering and a lot of iPhone users jeering (as in, “Hey, WTF? Our exclusive little club just got a lot less exclusive…”)That was pretty minor news compared to what happened to Instagram this week, though – it was purchased by Facebook for a whopping, unbelievable $1 Billion!Instagram, both the company and the app, are very simple – beautifully simple, I’m sure some would say.

They have a handful of employees and the app “does one thing well” – take a photo with your phone, add some fun filters to make it look cute and retro (like a Polaroid, sa... > Read more

April 12, 2012     |   Written by: Elisa Gabbert   |   Posted In: Online Marketing Blog Roundup   |   Comments: 9
 
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