Increasing Engagement on Twitter

Increase Twitter engagementTo make the most of using Twitter in your social media management, you will need to engage with your followers.

Here are some tips to increase engagement on Twitter:

  • Monitor Twitter mentions, retweets, and direct messages. Take 5-10 minutes to check these daily.
  • Respond to direct messages as appropriate. You might get some great conversations started and be able to connect with your followers on other platforms, such as Facebook and LinkedIn.
  • As appropriate, reply to @mentions with a thank you or other appropriate message.
  • Weekly choose at least 3-4 retweets to thank. (“Thank you for the retweet! [Include here a bit of that retweet so they know which one you are thanking them for])
  • As there is room, include at the end of some tweets “Please share” or the hashtags #RT or #retweet to encourage others to share and retweet your posts.
  • Remember to retweet what others share as relevant.
  • Weekly mark 5-7 relevant tweets by others as “Favorites.” This promotes goodwill with your fellow tweeters!

 

Tips for Growing Your Twitter Followers

Tips to grow your network of twitter followersGrowing your network of followers on Twitter will help you gain more exposure for your business, your book, your product. Here are some tips to gain more quality Twitter followers who are interested in what you have to offer.

  • Follow other people who are in the same industry or have similar interests.
  • When following, make sure their account is active and they have posted recently. There is no sense in following someone who hasn't tweeted in the past 30 days or more.
  • Be sure they have a head shot image in their profile or at least their company logo. If their profile picture is of a flower, their cat, or some other image, they most likely aren't someone you want to follow or have follow you. Do NOT follow anyone who does not have a profile pic at all.
  • Create a list in Twitter of people to follow that are influencers in your industry or area of expertise. Be sure to follow each of them and then start following people who are following your influencers.
  • Follow people who use the same keywords or #hashtags that you do in their bio.
  • Unfollow anyone who is not following you back after 30 days and any accounts that are no longer active. This is especially important if you're just starting out and have less than 2,000 followers. Since Twitter only allows you to follow up to 2,000 UNTIL you have at least that many following you back, by unfollowing these inactive accounts and those not following you back, it frees your account up to continue following more people. So let's say you've hit the 2,000 and only have 1,500 people following you. You check your account and realize you have 50 people you're following who are not following you back after 30 days. You then unfollow those 50 and can now follow 50 more people.
  • On each of your other networks, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc., post weekly inviting your connections there to follow you on Twitter. You could post a message such as “Come like my Facebook business page for more great tips!” [include link to your Facebook business page]).

I'd love to hear what other tips you have for growing your Twitter following. Please share in the comments section below.

Understanding Facebook Page Insights

Determining what to post on your Facebook business page and what's the best time to post, you want to make the best use of the Insights provided by Facebook. So let's go through some basics to understand this feature better.

  • Once you are logged in to your Facebook business page, you want to click on the Insights tab as shown below.

Facebook insights tab

 

  • Then click on the People tab.

Facebook page People tab

  • Then you'll see these tabs: "Your Fans" and "People Reached"

Facebook fans and people reached

  • Under the “Your Fans” tab you'll find the following information about the people who liked your page:
    • The percentage of women fans
    • The percentage of men fans
    • Where your fans are located by country and city
    • What languages your fans speak
  • Under the “People Reached” tab you will find information about the people your posts were served to: 
    • The percentage of women reached
    • The percentage of men reached
    • The percentage of “your fans” reached for both women and men
    • Countries and cities reached
    • Languages reached
  • You want to take note of this information so you can be sure your posts are relevant to those seeing them.
  • Next click on the "Posts" tab. Here you will find information about the days and times your fans are online and reading your posts. In the example below I see that in a recent 1-week period my fans were online more on Tuesday and at 5 pm.

Facebook posts days and times

 

  • Scroll down a bit farther on that page to see more data on your posts engagement. You'll see how much organic reach your posts have as well as likes and comments. This information can be especially useful in seeing what topics your fans are most interested in and likely to share with their networks. This is also the place where you can 'Boost' your posts. This is a paid feature that some have found very useful.

Facebook posts engagement

 

It's a good idea to check your Insights tab at least monthly to monitor activity and plan your strategy for your posts in months to come.

I'd love to hear any other tips you have about using Facebook's Insights tab. Share your comments below!

Freelancer Interview: Cindy Snyder

Cindy Snyder

I first connected with Cindy through a mutual connection on LinkedIn when I was looking for an additional transcriptionist. She is now also an account manager on my social media management team. Here is my interview with Cindy.

When did you start your freelance business?

I started working as a freelancer early 2013.

Why did you choose to work from home?

I became permanently disabled around New Year's of 2012. I knew I'd never be able to work an in-person job again and I wanted to be able to contribute to the household income. I started researching what I could do from home. I started out slow and as my health improved I was able to take on more clients and expand into different areas.

What advice would you give those who want to work from home?

I'd tell them to thoroughly do their research beforehand and make sure it is something they can really commit to because it is very hard work! It is also highly rewarding and I'd definitely encourage them to go for it. Just be aware of exactly what you're getting yourself into.

What resources have helped you in your business?

There were a couple of forums and websites that were helpful and in the beginning I got most of my work through freelance sites such as Guru and Elance. 

Share something about yourself.

My hobbies are reading, writing, watching movies, playing video games, and spending time with family and friends.

Links to online profiles:

Elance: https://www.elance.com/s/csnyder83/

Guru: http://www.guru.com/freelancers/cindy-snyder

I've also recently written a book about freelancing which you can find at all the major retailers. The social media page for it is https://www.facebook.com/pages/CJ-Snyder/918229991574263.

No "Gone Girl" Virtual Assistants

Don't be a "Gone Girl" Virtual AssistantI just read a blog post about someone's bad experience hiring a virtual assistant. The subtitle of her blog post is "When Your VA goes Gone Girl". Her experience has inspired me to write this post for two reasons:

  1. To help those looking for a virtual assistant avoid this type of experience.
  2. To help virtual assistants not to become a "Gone Girl" VA.

Looking for a Virtual Assistant?

Judy wanted to hire a VA. Her friend had suggested it because she had a good virtual assistant. However, the friend was unwilling to share her virtual assistant. This really surprises me. Most virtual assistants have allotted their work time so they are able to handle more than one client at a time. Perhaps this friend's virtual assistant really didn't have time to take on another client. However, she might have been able to help Judy find another virtual assistant that was reliable.

If you have a reliable virtual assistant, please share their information with others. The virtual assistant community is very open to referring others if they cannot take on the work themselves.

Judy also spend nearly a month training her new virtual assistant. Of course a VA may need some training. However, an experience, successful VA shouldn't require a month of training - and particularly not on most computer programs. A successful VA will already be quite familiar with most computer programs and how to answer emails.

When you hire a virtual assistant, make sure you have a written contract of some sort stating the work to be done, any time frames, payment arrangements, the VA's availability, and a confidentiality clause.

To recap, if you are looking for a reliable virtual assistant:

  1. Get a referral from a reliable source such as another successful virtual assistant.
  2. Make sure your virtual assistant is familiar with basic computer programs.
  3. Get a written contract detailing work to be done, payment arrangements, availability, etc.

Don't be a "Gone Girl" VA

Virtual assistants need to have the right mindset. You are not an employee - you are a business owner. Take your business seriously! If you really don't have time to take on another client, don't. It's very bad business form to start working with someone only to find you really don't have time and then can't get the work done. There is nothing wrong with referring a prospect to another virtual assistant. The VA community is worldwide and we should be helping one another out - not selfishly trying to keep all the work to ourselves.

Keep up-to-date with a basic knowledge of computer programs and tools a client may use. You should be familiar with how to use Word, Excel, Google docs and spreadsheets, manage email, and use basic social media sites. Take time to build your skills by taking online courses. You shouldn't expect clients to pay for your time to train yourself on programs you should already know.

Most important: I say this over and over - COMMUNICATE! If, for any reason at all, you cannot do something you've agreed to do, tell the client up front. Don't wait! A client will be so much more understanding if you let them know up front about an issue than if you wait and they find out on their own that you just didn't do what you said you would. There is just no excuse for not communicating with your client when there are so many methods to do so - text, phone, email, Facebook message, Skype.

To recap, here are a few things you can do to be a reliable virtual assistant:

  1. Be willing to refer a prospect to another virtual assistant.
  2. Keep up-to-date with basic computer programs and tools a client may use.
  3. Communicate and keep your word!

Let's educate clients so they don't work with "Gone Girl" virtual assistants, but find reliable virtual assistants they love and work with for many years.

 

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