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"social media" category

The website that grew - part 14

8th June 2014

(for previous installments, try the tWtG category)

As the position on search engines improved, the site's popularity gradually grew. But Kate knew that search engine position wasn't the only way of drawing in customers. Some customers would be interested in connecting with the shop via social media channels, or receiving a newsletter which would give them discounts from time to time. So it was time to look at some of these methods.

First of all, Hugh showed Kate a chart of some of the common methods of online communication with customers.

some social media channels - email, facebook, twitter, quora, pinterest, google plus, website

"You've got to take into consideration what suits your customer base too" said Hugh. "Facebook is a consumer oriented medium, and your customers are consumers, so putting up a facebook page and getting "liked" is important. Once you're on people's facebook streams, it would be crucial to maintain a slow but steady stream of special offers and customer feedback.  But for the non-facebook users, those offers should probably be repeated in a monthly email newsletter."

Kate agreed, and was also quite interested in setting up Google+, twitter, and pinterest accounts, but realised that she did not have time for everything.

"We've talked about return on investment with the Google ads." she asked; "How does it work here?"

"Although we're working with a digital medium, it's sometimes a bit more like traditional advertising when you work facebook," said Hugh, "but you can measure clicks and buys from social media and emails.  So it's really important to do that, and that will give you a very good feel for how much all this work is worth."



Can a social media presence replace your website?

17th March 2014

I recently attended a business meeting with a wide mix of businesses represented, and a presentation on social media. In the presenter's opinion, social media had made websites outdated.

If social media supplies a need for your business, that's great; we're making use of social media too, and many of our customers do, in different ways. But what it doesn't do is obviate the need for other forms of e-marketing and e-provision (not all websites exist for marketing!).

Take a business that doesn't sell anything online, doesn't have a great deal of information to get across, and doesn't have any online provision for such functions as customer/member service. Do they still need a website?

Assuming they sell something that people look for on the internet, then yes, I would suggest a website even if they have a social media presence on various platforms, simply to provide a base for describing what they sell, and pointing to the various social media sites.

The one constant in social media (if we are talking about facebook, twitter, pinterest.. - menshn closed last year, by the way) is that. as a user, you are faced with a rolling list of new topics, latest at the top.  

So as a business, if you have to constantly re-state your USPs in order to keep them in people's minds, you're using the wrong medium!

Linked In Caching Madness

30th November 2012
Categories: caching, social media

It has been brought to our attention recently that if you share a link using "Linked In", it will cache the title and descrption of that link indefintely, so that if someone else shares it two years later and has made significant changes, the "preview" given by Linked In, which includes the page title, won't have changed from two years ago!

Say I share a link today to Green Living Energy's blog post on the new Electrical Safety Register,  The "window title", a.k.a. "meta title" of this page is "The Electrical Safety Register".  

So far so good.  

If in two years Green Living Energy have deleted their blog and post a damning indictment of the Electrical Safety Register, entitled "How the Electrical Safety Register has failed" (not likely but bear with me), and happen to post it under the same URL, i.e., and I want to share it on linked in, it will come up with the title in bold underneath my link "The Electrical Safety Register".  It won't check the title, despite the fact that it was first shared over 2 years ago.

Not a genius bit of programming - but forewarned is forearmed!

The wrong way to do social media (part 1)

28th August 2012
Categories: social media

According to the bbc website today, the UK government recently spent £100,000 on facebook ads as part of the "Great" marketing campaign.

The BBC's correspondent, Rory Cellan-Jones, wonders if the Facebook "likes" produced by the campaign were worth the advertising (the cost of a "like" is something like 43p).

Of course, if all the facebook fans are going to cancel their Marbella plans next year and stay in Great Britain, the GDP generated might be significant.

But the BBC reckons that the "likes" are not worth an awful lot.

It's one thing to set up a facebook page; it's quite another to spend money getting people to visit it when there's no clear conversion process.

As one comment puts it: "Is it a waste of money, you ask? When was THAT ever the main concern in Government spending?"

So I've joined menshn

28th June 2012

The point of twitter, it seems, was all about keeping in touch with your friends, at first. It was heavily mobile-led, and using twitter you could keep in touch about the minutiae of life by jabbing your mobile phone's number buttons, or your on-screen keyboard, or your blackberry keyboard, and the message was sent.

What happened to twitter was that the communication turned political, and people realised that lots of interesting things were actually being said, and so institutions like the bbc started using it as a litmus test of opinion or what have you.

Now, menshn.

Menshn is trying to be what twitter is now. 

This means that it hasn't got that wonderful attractiveness that drew people to twitter, and it has boxed itself in, unlike twitter, which evolved.

I register.  I login.  I look around, and I don't feel compelled to participate.

Is it just me?

But of course, we'll see.

Google delivers some Google+ Improvements

20th December 2011
Categories: social media

Google has announced via a blog post a number of improvements which should make Google+ easier to use and (I would imagine that Google hopes) more attractive to new users and 'sticky' for existing ones.

One of the huge advantages Google+ has had from the start is integration with other Google products - most notably gmail, although being able to advertise on the Google home page as they did when Google+ came out is also a huge (dare I say it?) plus.

Notifications about things happening in Google+ appear in a header bar gmail, and Google has now made this easier to navigate, introducing more content in a dropdown panel when you click the notification icon.

Google has also extended Google+ into the business world, and there is a specific way to advertise your business on Google+, using a "Google+ Page".

Finally a better photo lightbox has been unveiled, replacing the very klunky 1.0 version which, to be honest, looked like a rushed product.

So who knows, maybe in 2012 we'll all be Google+ing each other?

SEO and Social Media Workshops from Web Experts

28th November 2011
Categories: seo, social media

Are you tired of hearing about SEO and social media? So are we. But together with our friends at Cicada Online, we have put together a workshop for our contacts and customers, aimed at cutting through the hot air and getting results. The half-day session covers:

  • Understanding the opportunities from SEO and social media
  • Relating them to your business
  • Creating an SEO and social media action plan for your business
  • A credit for 4 hours' SEO work on your website

Workshops can be held on your premises, or at Oxford Web's new offices at Sandford Gate (from mid December 2011). Workshops at Sandford Gate will be delivered to a maximum of 6 people from 2 businesses and will cost £375+VAT per business represented.

By keeping the workshops very limited, we are able to concentrate on your needs - whether you want to focus on more traffic, expanding the reach of your business, or simply a better experience for your website visitors, we can give you the low-down, listen to your concerns, analyse your website's strengths and weaknesses, and advise on future actions.

Marcus from Oxford Web and Ned Wells from Cicada Online will both be available throughout the workshops in order to cover the subject matter comprehensively.  Each company represented will also receive credit for 2 hours' work from Oxford Web and 2 hours from Cicada, which will be directed where needed most, following recommended actions from the workshop.

We will be publishing workshop dates shortly; meanwhile, for more information, please get in touch.

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