A Facebook Ad Audience from Site Visitors – How To with WordPress

Facebook makes it possible to create a list of visitors to your website so that you may:
  • Build a Facebook ad audience to which you can advertise, and
  • Create a "lookalike" audience based on the nature of your visitor pool, to extend the target audience for your ads.
in a WordPress.org site, using a recommended plugin to make short work of the job. Naturally, sites not built on WordPress can also take advantage of the program and we will address that in a separate post. The image below is a capture from the website home of the plugin. Step one - download the plugin .zip file. Then, in your WordPress dashboard, select "Plugins">"Add New". There are two ways to install a plugin. One uses the search bar to find and install. The other uses the Add Plugins selection "Add Plugins". This is the right choice when you have downloaded a plugin zip file to your computer. You will be asked to browse to that file and install it. In seconds you will be asked to activate it. FBConvPxl_plugin Once activated the plugin will appear in the dashboard sidebar on the left and it's here that you will determine where to install the conversion pixel. Click the plugin name to open your options. I chose to add it to both pages and posts so that any visitor viewing any of that content will be captured to my audience list. inSettings The process works when the conversion pixel code is pasted into posts and pages, either as you create them, or by opening existing content in the editor and adding the code where the plugin has created a place at the bottom of the page. Once you've pasted it, don't forget to update the post or page. If you don't the code won't be added: FBconvPxl_plugin_paste_code As I have found with other code samples that will be used time after time (like the Twitter follow button),  saving code to a text file, from which you can copy and paste repeatedly, saves time and grief as you use it over and over. But hang on, where do we get the conversion pixel code? ConversionTracking Facebook walks you through the steps here. You may choose from a number of conversion categories, each of them explained if you click on the name, such as the one underlined in red. If you follow the steps outlined you'll end up creating the conversion pixel you need to copy and paste into your site content. Then it's a matter of allowing time to pass while your audience numbers build. When you're ready, return to Ads Manager and select "Conversion Tracking" where you're invited to create your ad: Conversion_Tracking Feel free to use the comment box below to ask a question or rate the value of this post, and thanks for visiting. For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.

Twitter Feed In WordPress

A client recently asked about adding a Twitter feed to a website. I know he chose a WordPress theme when the newest site was built and many millions of other sites are built on it too. So, not surprisingly, there are a number of solutions, some using code, some using Plugins or Widgets, some free, some with premium options and so on. For the purpose of this post I selected a simple plugin-widget that was as simple as install, configure settings and save. The result is visible in the right hand margin, above my post collection. I made my selection and in the WordPress dashboard selected "Plugins", "Add New". Enter the exact name of the plugin in the search box and hit enter. TwitterInWP In seconds I was invited to activate the plugin. Then, because this particular solution is a widget, I clicked on "Appearance", "Widgets". The display that results shows my installed widgets in alphabetical order on the left, and the locations in which I might choose to display the Twitter feed on the right. In this image you see both the widget named on the left and the location I selected, in the Primary Sidebar between my share buttons and my post list. InstallWidget FeedSettings There are a few settings you can tweak to choose a colour or add a border, yes/no to a scrollbar and of course the Twitter handle for the feed you want to appear. I chose "netvideomaker" to display my tweets, leaving off the @ sign. the image at left is a partial view of the selections available.  I mentioned at the top that this particular solution requires no API or code but clearly there is a "Twitter Widget ID". Since I didn't insert it I have to assume it comes with the plugin installation. For the moment I'm satisfied with this straightforward  approach to displaying my feed in the sidebar of my posts and pages. But I said it isn't the only solution. Elegant Themes has a post on the subject that presents a number of alternatives, with illustrations.

Pinterest for Business

In only five years, Pinterest users have created one billion boards. More than 14 million articles are pinned every day, 80% of visitors are on a mobile device and two-thirds of all the content people Pin is from a business website. Rumours persist that they are developing a "buy" button. If you sell anything that should make your hair stand on end. Yikes. In the video below, Kevin Knight from the partnerships department talks about how to make “beautiful” pins, create thoughtful descriptions, and help pinners take action. In this video he talks about the art of making boards and what he says reminds me of the advice generally given to businesses learning social media marketing. Remember that you arent' advertising, you are sharing a persona and hoping to attract a following of folks who share your interests and values. 
For more solid information and additional content links, read Chris Crumm's article on WebProNews. For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.
Writing White Papers: How to Capture Readers and Keep Them Engaged

A Video Game-Changer – Whiteboard Animated Video

This is video's year online according to the research. One of the emerging game-changers is something called whiteboard animated video, visual elements drawn before your eyes, with music, narration, images and titles flying in and out in ways almost impossible not to watch. But their appeal, particularly to marketers, doesn't stop there. Compared to talking head video these animated presentations are
  • 15% better remembered by all age groups,
  •  three times more likely to be shared,
  • receive more than twice the recommendations and are
  • more than twice as likely to make a sale.
Add remarkable affordability and you have a fast track to new business. No location shooting, no site meetings, everything done in the digital realm, including your online preview when the project nears its final cut. Watch our latest production and see if you don't agree that the level of engagement is what every business is looking for. Take the full screen option for the best impression: For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.

Live Streaming Video – Me Reporting from Here

Meerkat was first but Periscope offers replay. If you aren't caught up, allow me to explain. Meerkat (for iPhone for a while yet) is an app that makes live streaming video possible from your phone to a wide audience. It's getting huge buzz, and another 14 million in backing recently, but the knock is that so many streams are dead and done by the time you get a notice. Periscope (a Twitter buy for about $100 million, and also iPhone-only for now) archives streams so they can be viewed after the live aspect is history. What both of them mean at the top level is that anyone can be a broadcast journalist, covering breaking news, or an infant's first steps, or you name it. And you can be dead certain that live porn and live cat videos will be everywhere. twoLiveStreamers   It wasn't many months ago that social media blogs and research reports were touting 2015 as the year of online video. This pretty much guarantees it. Everything we've been able to do with still images can now be done with video. "Here I am making the amazing dish I'm going to upload to Instagram." "Here I am at the gourmet grocery where I buy the ingredients for the amazing dish I'm going...". You know? Read more... For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.

Mobile-friendly websites to get ranking boost

Whether you provide, pay for or DIY SEO, April could be the cruellest month. Toward month end, Google will roll out a mobile-friendly ranking system for search. Given the explosive growth of search on mobile, not being mobile-friendly could cost you most of your investment in SEO. We Canadians lead the world in searches per capita and the 82% of Canadian business sites that are not yet mobile-friendly are making life awfully easy for the 18% that are. Social media marketing aims to create new revenue, ultimately, by using multiple means to deliver increased website traffic. This graph, from Google's "trend" site, demonstrates just how big a deal SMM has become in less than a decade: You can get a pretty good idea of the state of your site just by visiting on a mobile device. Google's top suggestion is to, you might have guessed it, Google your site on a mobile device. A while back they introduced what they call a mobile-friendly label, which either appears or does not in your search listing. Look for the words "Mobile-friendly" under the url. mo-friendly_label You may also choose to use Google's tool. There's nothing complicated about it. You are either "awesome" or you aren't. If you flunk the test and use WordPress, Google offers a link to support for getting yourself fixed. notMobileFriendly250If you don't use WordPress and fail the test Google provides a few questions, each linked to supportive content. Regardless of how your site was built, if it matters to your business you need to find and implement a solution. Google suggests the following are key to getting the mobile-friendly label:
  • Avoid software that is not common on mobile devices, like Flash
  • Use text that is readable without zooming
  • Size content to the screen so users don’t have to scroll horizontally or zoom
  • Place links far enough apart so that the correct one can be easily tapped
Should you be among the startlingly high number of SMBs that DON'T HAVE A WEBSITE (!!!) consider beginning with a WordPress or other responsive theme. We use Genesis in WordPress and as we've pointed out, we got "Awesome" on the test.

FLM_on_phone2015_228_rotated

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How to Promote Your Post

I find it difficult to imagine finding more good information on promoting a post than is included in this infographic and the supporting content.
RazorSocial
Courtesy of: RazorSocial
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44 Pro-recommended Social Media Tools

It isn't often that I find so much useful in a single post. This is a rare exception and it's no surprise that it comes from the SocialMediaExaminer.  Snip.ly is an app that installs in your browser. When you find content you want to share you can use it to create a link to the content AND create a personalized call to action to accompany it in your share to whatever common platforms you've given Sniply permission to connect to. My first effort, visible across the bottom of the screen capture links a post on this site to the blue button. 44SocialMediay600   When I tweeted the sniply, a link was automatically inserted to deliver a visitor to the blog post. Here's what the tweet looked like: sniplyTwitter600 Clicking the link brings up both the SME content and my sniply call to action, as the first image above describes. The red arrow in that image and the red oval above were both added in a second recent find, namely AwesomeScreenshot, available for Firefox, Chrome and Safari, lets you capture what you're viewing and mark it up, then save it. To view the SME content visit my Twitter feed - @netvideomaker. For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.

Goals in Google Analytics

I am no longer surprised when a new client or prospect admits to not having opened their site analytics in, well, maybe never. That doesn't discourage most from tweaking the site and hoping for the best. The environment of the web provides the best opportunity ever for measuring the results of our actions and any professional marketer will tell you that analysis and measurement are essential. So, lets talk about setting goals in Google Analytics. You open analytics and you want to see what your visitors look at, how often, how many pages, visit duration, and bounce rate. You manage to find "users flow" under the "Audience" selection in the left hand column. You get a lovely, quite artistic image that I find virtually useless. Here's an example: userFlow600 You can export this to PDF among other choices but I find it frustrating no matter where I look at it. Fortunately, there is a simple solution for anyone with administrative access. You can create a goal and once done view the data in an entirely different presentation: firstGoal600This format presents columns of data from number of sessions through new visitors, number of pages viewed and so on and each column can be sorted, so if you want to see what pages have the highest bounce rate, sort it from high to low.  There are many goals available pre-made and ready to import. This is one. It's called the "content analysis dashboard". Notice that across the top I've blown up the word "Admin" to show you where to go to access goals. The screen you see has three columns. This image is of the third, furthest right, and in the list of selections I've underscored "Goals". goalSelect Selecting "Goals" brings up another screen: goalAssortmentYou can spend a while here, selecting categories and looking at the various goals available to import. When you make a selection and press "Import" you will shortly see the word "Success" appear top centre of your screen. Return to "Reporting" (seen at the top of the next image) and under "Dashboard", select "Private". Any goals you've imported with appear and be accessible. In this case it's the "Content Analysis Dashboard" we selected from the screen above, where it is the first goal described. privateDashboard When you select that goal what you see next is a series of columns providing different segments of the data from the "Users flow" screen. I selected the top right offer and was presented with what you see in the second image in this post, with page visits and related data in an easily digestible, sortable format. Now you have access to hard information about how your site is used and can make informed decisions about what content is working for you and what isn't. Like anything else you've worked at learning, spending time in Analytics is its own reward. For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.

Embed Audio in Your Post

I suspect that most folks who write a blog know how to embed video, often using the embed code provided by YouTube and other similar sites. You may be one of those folks, but do you know how to embed audio in a blog post? I recently discovered a music site that offers both links and embed code, just as the aforementioned YouTube does and I couldn't resist giving it a try here. So, for your listening pleasure a pretty cool tune from Usher. For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video. For a sample Digest, click here.

Secure Password Storage and Access

LastPass Like the cards in our wallets and purses, most of us have too many passwords and user names involved in our navigating the online world. Enter LastPass, a tool designed for secure password storage and access. Once you decide to download the free version you're asked to choose Windows or Mac, then select a browser version. Provide a Master Password for access to LastPass when required. You CANNOT forget this password without undesirable consequences. LastPass will also fill out forms for you if you elect to provide the usual required information to it. You agree to allow the app to find and list all of the sites on your computer where log in is required. Once the list is populated you may choose to view the password data. You're asked if you're sure, I was, and was knocked out by how many sites and passwords are tucked away on this PC. I gave permission for the app to record them and then was asked a scary question - did I want to erase them all from my computer. I balked at that, was advised that my life was insecure if I turned down the suggestion, so I took a deep breath and deep sixed them all. Now, when I navigate to a site where I used to log in I select the LastPass button from the top of Firefox, and slide the cursor down to "Sites". A long list appears from which I can select the site I want and in seconds I'm logged in without a keystroke. LastPassatWork I actually feel lighter having done this. Or maybe I'm just overdue for lunch. Check it out for yourself.
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Exploring Google Analytics

Working at a client site, asked to deliver a top line on their site's performance from Google Analytics, I was reminded that many website owners don't look at site performance, ever or infrequently and not in any depth. Yet they make tweaks, add and remove content, change colours and so on completely without input as to what is working or not working already. Back at the home office on a Saturday morning I assign myself the tast of exploring Google Analytics. I opened up the report for this site (thanks to the Analytics plugin for WordPress) and then started a YouTube video, available below, in which Stasia Kudrez, President of SEM Training, walks her audience through the A-B-C's of Google Analytics, with examples from one fictional and one real website. I highly recommend doing what I did. Use the video pause button to follow along in your analytics. Unless you're already very well versed in this tool I guarantee you will learn valuable lessons.

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Twitter Cards for Business

twitterCards_webinar
There's a new tool in town and no matter what you've heard, it's not me. It's the Twitter Card, a business card-looking combination of image and text intended to increase website traffic and conversions from Twitter. The cards are free if you select only your followers as the audience, and you probably should for starters. If you later decide to reach a larger, targeted audience, you can ante up budget and set dates and so on. To get started, visit Twitter Ads, register, with a credit card that won't be charged for a followers-only card campaign, then click on "Create a Campaign". If you'd rather learn how to do this from the source, Twitter's Brendan Zhang hosts the webinar I viewed, which you'll find here. You will have to trade some personal info to get to the slides. Or you could stick with me for a few more minutes. From the dropdown options select "Website clicks or conversions". Keep your eyes up on the next screen. What you want is the navigation link named "Creatives" at the top of the page. Click it and select "Cards". With the new page open, select "website" from the four choices across the top. You're going to be asked for four things:
  • an image - 800 pixels wide and 320 high. I'll show you my first one in a minute:
  • a URL to send followers to, in my case a blog post on this site
  • a headline, up to 70 characters in length
  • a CTA, chosen from a dropdown list. I chose "Visit Now" because I was linking to a web page (blogpost)

You should have no difficulty with the rest of the process. It's just filling in blanks, and it looks like this:

webcard_build_screenYour first attempt won't say "edit image" under the first chore - "Card image". Mine does because choosing to edit my card was the only way to get this screen up. The others will be blank until you populate them and the call to action (CTA) will be yours to select. I said I'd show you my image. That's it on the right in the centre of the card. Built in PhotoShop with a free graphical element. For a better look and the story behind why I wanted to do this today, visit this link. That's it. Please feel free to comment or ask a question in the space below.

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Writing White Papers: How to Capture Readers and Keep Them Engaged

Share One Thing in Social Media Marketing

OneThingbetter social media marketing If you follow social media marketing you know that advice often comes in the form of "Nine Tips" and "Seven Tools". Some of it is great content. What if we SMmarketers decided to contribute one thing whenever something special raises its head? We'd all get better, we'd all be move valuable to clients in our markets, we'd all bring clients more customers and more revenue. Why not? So, join with me in Tweeting #OneThinginSMM and let's see where it goes. Remember to tweet early and often. (Feel free to add your one thing as a comment below. I'll be sure it gets shared.) For more coverage of Inbound and Social Media Marketing visit our Twitter and Facebook sites and sign up for the Friday Digest of breaking news on all things social, mobile and video.

Rescuing Under-exposed Images

Smartphone cameras have revolutionized the web,and particularly social media. For SMBs using social media to market their goods and services, engaging and relevant images are vastly more effective than text in attracting attention. Research has recently proven that a picture is indeed worth a thousand words - and more. Occasionally a picture you'd like to use might be disqualified due to insufficient light. It's just too dark to work. But it's a digital image and that means there's way more there than meets the eye. Here's a case in point. This image was taken at a function I was engaged to shoot and edit for the client of a client. I took some still images with a tablet camera. Some of them came out looking like this one, screen captured as it actually appeared in an older version of PhotoShop: curves_before
It's murky, no one is recognizable, just not something you would use to illustrate something about your business, your employees, your events. But remember, there's more here than meets the eye. There are a number of tools inside a number of image editing applications that can draw detail from the shadows. Naturally there are limits, dependant on how much or little light was available at the time the image was created. In the image below I've used the curves tool in PhotoShop 6.5 (ancient but like an old sweater you can't give up) to seemingly re-light the scene. PS has been seen as an expensive app with a long learning curve. But this and many many more tools are available in PhotoShop Elements, which I also have installed on my editing system and it, bundled with Adobe's video editing app, Premiere Elements, (which is a wondrous thing) cost me less than $100, from B&H Photo in Manhattan (bought online of course) a couple of years ago. And by the way, this same option is available to digital video. I once saved the first twenty minutes of a live event using the levels option to relight the scene. So, let's have a look: curves_after
Impressive, no? I might have been able to push this a bit further, but the patchiness I'm seeing on the wall with the "Exit" sign tells me that I'm pretty close to the line with this image. Is it now a great image? No. But if a caption or description gave it relevance to your message we've taken it out of the garbage can and put it to work. If this post leaves you with any questions please go ahead and use the comment option and I'll answer as best I can.

Facebook Advertising

Readers of our blog are almost certainly aware of the Facebook "Edgerank" algorithm, the arbiter of what posts reach whose newsfeeds. Facebook wants its base to spend lots of time on the site. They know that what a user sees in the newsfeed has to be relevant to that individual and that too much content that doesn't engage will turn users off. So you see posts from people you regularly interact with, and you don't see posts from people you largely ignore. EXCEPT when the post is advertised/promoted. For a few dollars any business can promote (boost) a post, getting it into the newsfeeds not just of fans but of friends of fans. Not all friends of course, just the ones the fan regularly engages with. But that's ok because it's people who matter to the fan who are most likely to be interested in what comes from him or her. DH_0000s_0000_a09 An interesting aspect of this paid promotion is that the post content is quite often not about a product or service. One of our clients promoted a post announcing the birth of a child to a popular retail salesperson. It reached hundreds of people who weren't then fans of the store's Facebook page and made a connection between the business and the real people representing it. Since that first experiment we have successfully promoted more posts, including photos and video clips, reaching thousands of new newsfeeds and adding to the store fan base. All for less than the price of lunch. Add to this option the new metrics Facebook provides to site admins (data in likes, reach, visits, posts and people) and you have a powerful tool for building engagement with near immediate feedback. new_see_all

Online Video for Small Business

Diane Chiasson, FCSI, President of Chiasson Consultants Inc., is credited as the founder of the foodservice merchandising profession in North America.  I'm honoured that she asked me to write a guest post for her newsletter (Feb. 2013) on using video in a small restaurant/food service business.  We agreed that including a demonstration video made sense.  The one I chose was done for a south-eastern Ontario family resort, to promote their get-away options, showcasing the property, its amenities and food services.  If you have any comments or questions about either video in your business or the blog post (available to download below) call me direct at 416-823-3100 or send an email to david@faceliftmarketing.ca
Online Video in Your Small Business

According to a recent 3M study on Facebook, videos are shared more often than photos, status updates or links. Sharing builds your fan base, so the more the better. And video is unique in its ability to communicate information and personality at hyper speed. According to the same 3M study we process visual information 60,000 times faster than text. In an age when grabbing someone’s attention in an instant is critical, visuals work, making video a stellar idea.... (View the post in PDF).

Hangout at Google+

Last night the partners at Facelift met for 90 minutes, thanks to the video conferencing feature Google+ calls a "Hangout". With a few glitches in audio and a very occasional video freeze it worked wonderfully. The intuitive interface switches view from one individual to another when the speaker changes. Participants see themselves in thumbnail video and their hangout mates in larger screen mode above. [Read more...]

Helpful Hint: Tracking hits on bit.ly shortened URLs

There are a number of websites given to shortening long URLs for pasting into email or posts and tweets. If you have any interest in knowing how many times your link has been clicked you need to know about bit.ly [Read more...]

“Newsjacking” – content that rides on a bigger story

We accept that the steady creation of fresh, engaging content is the path to increased web traffic. Why? Because blogging, posting and tweeting that content brings interested parties back to the website. It's obvious that big stories get big reach. Ask Prince Harry. When nude Vegas pictures of him appeared online, social media lit up. [Read more...]
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