Social Media: Metrics and Measurement

I recently read Prof. Serena Carpenter’s informative article on tracking social media.  It seems to be an area many  public relations practitioners are specializing in these days, and a sound supplement to traditional campaigns.

The article pointed out  the value of first identifying one’s goals for social media in terms of whether it is   reach, reputation or engagement.  By reputation, I’m assuming this can include reputation restoration as well. In addition, Carpenter went on to say, it is important to craft very specific objectives in terms of social media efforts. She gave concrete examples of possible goals such as  to get more social media mentions of your blog, find sources, increase readership, build reputation, find new story angles,  and so forth.  Carpener also suggested being aware of your online presence by Googling your company name and capturing screenshots of your web presence. She recommended the following resources:

 You can capture multiple sections of your results. You can also use Super Screenshot! or PDFmyurl to capture entire page. You will capture the results again when you hand in the social media assignment.

Set up Google alerts for your name (e.g., “Serena Carpenter”; “Carpenter, Serena”), company name, employees, etc. PR Sarah Evans suggested other useful tools to monitor your online presence not required for this assignment: 1) use BlogPulse Conversation Tracker feed to monitor blog comments, 2) track mentions in video with Google, 3) monitor discussions with BoardTracker, 4) and view your reputation with Quarkbase

Source: Prof. Serena Carpenter

Blogging With Purpose: Part Two

Sherrie Bakshi writing for Public Relations Tactics on what makes a good blog went on to say, tracking conversions is key. You need to investigate how many readers moved from your blog to your website. Google Analytics, naturally was suggested as an excellent web tracking tool, but as Bakshi said, alternatively you can simply survey your customers as to how they came across your blog.

 Simply put, the purpose of doing this is to be able to see results over the longterm. Bakshi also said it’s important to consider contributing to blogs that you folllow on “your online and print collateral” and to seek opportunities to link your blog to other websites and blogs.

Being a blog contributor has been most rewarding for me personally as I was able to share ideas with a new audience and build traffic to my webiste. 

Here is more information on the value of blogging today:

8 Ways to Use Blogging as an Interactive Marketing Tool

by Dana Lynn Smith

Here are some ideas for using blogging in social and interactive ways:

1. Encourage your readers to share your content with others.

Make it easy for readers to share your content by adding “share” buttons from Share This or Add This. Then ask readers to share by including text at the end of your best posts such as: “Do you know someone who might benefit from these tips? Just click the Share This button below to send a link by email or recommend this post on your favorite social site.”

2. Actively solicit comments.

Get readers engaged by including a sentence at the end of some posts inviting comments. You can even write a post designed to elicit comments. Thank each commenter and make a further comment based on what they said.

3. Make comments on other blogs.

Making insightful comments on related blogs is a terrific way to boost your visibility and create links and traffic to your site. Subscribe to the top blogs related to your book’s topic or audience and watch for posts that you can comment on. Comments should be helpful and relevant, not self-promotional.

4. Write guest posts for other blogs.

Contact other bloggers that cater to your audience and offer to write a guest article. Include a brief bio and a low-resolution photo. Google Blog Search is a good place to search for relevant blogs.

5. Create a feed for your blog.

RSS feeds allow your blog posts to be automatically delivered to your subscribers by email or through a feed reader. Receiving your blog posts regularly engages readers more. To create a feed for your blog, go Feedburner

6. Do a virtual book tour

Make guest appearances on blogs, ezines, podcasts or other forums to promote your book. Provide unique content to each host on your tour. Content can include interviews, how-to articles, book excerpts, videos, book reviews, or an article about how you developed the plot or characters for a novel.

7. Join a blog carnival.

Blog carnivals are a collection of links pointing to blog posts on a particular topic, or topics of interest to a particular group of people. Learn more and search for relevant carnivals Blog Carnival.

8. Hold a contest or drawing on your blog.

Use the blog comment feature to hold contests. For example, post a question and award a prize to the first person who leaves a comment with the correct answer. Or, write a blog post stating that everyone who leaves a comment on the post by a specific date (allow five to seven days) will be entered in a drawing to win a free copy of your book. Promote the contest on your social networks.

Excerpted from The Savvy Book Marketer’s Guide to Successful Social Marketing, by book marketing coach Dana Lynn Smith. For free book marketing tips, follow @BookMarketer on Twitter and get your free Top Book Marketing Tips ebook on Dana’s blog.

 

How To Develop Key Messages and Get Them Across Quickly

 

One of the most effective ways for authors to promote their books is to do broadcast interviews. The reason is related to the large audiences that can be reached quickly. Radio interviews tend to run from 10- 20 minutes, whereas TV interviews are shorter, and often run less than five minutes. So to deliver the points you are eager to make, preparation is needed. Many authors work with media trainers to learn how to tighten their messages, and break their books down to easy to digest points.
 
However, not everyone has the resources to hire a media trainer, or even the time to work with one, although it is a smart investment for any author. I’d like to share what I’ve learned along the way, as a book publicist, and how I’ve trained my authors before they do an interview.
 
It may be somewhat challenging to apply these tips to fiction, and yet it can be done, if you take the time to figure out the expertise you can share with an audience. Author Jill Lubin once said the media is obsessed with several things: love, health, and money. As simplistic as that sounds, it is nevertheless, true and can be verified by  simply reading news headlines.

When pulling together key messages, think in terms of problems your book solves for readers.  Use the ideas the media is always keen on covering: love, health, and money. Ask yourself, is there any theme in my book that can help the reader become sexier, richer, or healthier? If so, you may be on to a relevent key message.
 
What can your book teach your audience? What will they learn that will make a positive  difference in their lives? Or their communities at large? Spending time answering these questions will help you jump-start your key messages.
 
Here is an example from my own files:
 
I had a science-fiction writer as a client whose area of expertise was discussing benefits of using renewable energy in preventing future environmental dilemmas like the Gulf of Mexico offshore drilling explosion, and breaking down the science of ocean energy thermal technology. 
I was able to get her featured on NBC on Telemundo, teaching viewers how to do a home energy audit. She talked about how the audience can save money by using CFL light bulbs, the benefits of solar panels, and other ways to live green. This was a topic she was impassioned about, and she explained in a concise way. The interview was challenging because the host was bi-lingual, but the results were super. You can watch it here.
 
Try to identify topics you can speak to, and see how your messages can tie in to how audiences can save money, live better, or be healthier. Practice. and practice some more. Before long, you’ll be prepared for your next broadcast interview.
 
Jackie O’Neal is the founder of O’Neal Media Group, a public relations consultancy that helps entrepreneurs get noticed, and stay noticed. A talented public relations strategist, one of Jackie’s specialties is writing a targeted communications plan so her clients can meet their most important objectives, and stay on track. Need help? Contact O’Neal Media Group.
Learn more about working with the media in Jackie’s previous guest post, Fool-proof Ways to Correspond With Journalists: http://bookmarketingmaven.typepad.com/book_marketing_maven/2010/05/foolproof-ways-to-correspond-with-journalists.html

Blogging with purpose

Sherrie Bakshi writing for Public Relations Tactics on ideas to what constitutes a good blog noted the importance of writing about topics one is passionate about. She said, “ Also consider your posts as an opportunity for you to position yourself as an expert in your field.” Bakshi went on to say there is value in creating an editorial calendar in order to plan consistent postings. The reason for this is related to offering up fresh, relevant content, and its clear search engines will respond. I’ve been taking a course with ACEInspire and recently attended a webinar related to establishing planned blogging and content. Bashki also touches upon this point by suggesting creating editorial calendars for the same purpose– regular postings tied to your campaigns or projects.

The Value of Blogging

Th Value of Blogging For High Visibility
By Jackie O’Neal
O’Neal Media Group
http://onealmediagroup.presskit247.com

A recent study showed that a significant number of reporters use the internet to find sources for their stories.

In today’s fast paced world, if you want to get quoted by the media on a consistent basis, it’s important to have fresh content on your blog. Outdated material does not contribute to the success of your enterprise.

These are the results of the study that definitely underscores my point:

Eighty-eight percent of journalists say they spend 20 or more hours a week on the Internet, up from 60 percent in 2007. Nearly all (85 percent) say they have a LinkedIn account, 55 percent are on Facebook and 24 percent tweet on Twitter.
When asked how journalists use the Internet:
95 percent say search (Google, Yahoo!, etc.)
92 percent say reading news
92 percent say emailing
89 percent say finding story ideas
87 percent say finding news sources
75 percent say reading blogs
64 percent say watching webinars or webcasts
61 percent say watching YouTube
59 percent say social networks
source: Arketi Group
http://www.arketi.com

So what if you if you are a business owner and lack time to blog regularly?

I viewed an excellent video by marketing Nicole Dean that explains strategies that can be undertaken to keep blog content fresh – without writing a word yourself.

The video is full of valuable resources about how to hire a ghostwriter without ending up in the poorhouse. The fact is there are qualified bloggers for hire that have low overhead, and hence they charge an affordable flat rate. The key is to get clear on the payment terms, and also view a writing sample before contracting the individual.

To make sure text is not plagiarized, copy and paste a paragraph into Google, and if it is, the search engine will lead you to the original source. That’s why asking for a writing sample or two is a wise move before making a hiring decision.

Some business owners are able to carve out time to blog, but fear they will run out of ideas, the video teaches a valuable strategy to generate story ideas and fresh content.

Think of some keywords in your industry and type them into the Google search engine. For instance, if you sell products geared towards new parents, you might try using the term “parenting.” You’’ll pull up a wealth of material, you can then summarize with attribution, as a blog post.

View a video with more simple ideas on starting a blog without actually writing the content:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6QLHecENj0w

Social Media Tips For Finding Sources, Trends And More

Authors and experts can benefit by using search.twitter.com to look up who is talking about the themes of their book (or expertise). You simply put in a keyword in the search box. For example, if the theme of your book is parenting, or eco-green issues, you’d place those keywords in the search box. Twitter will pull up conversations going on on those topics, and then you can join in, and also find potential new readers. LinkedIn has many features, big and small, which are not generally known, or at least not many people know how they work.”
A three degree network, LinkedIn considers only first 3 degrees as your network To reach people outside your network, become a member of a group they are a member of to be able to connect.

A Powerful Way To Use LinkedIn To Connect With Bloggers And Journalists:

Use LinkedIN To Do A search and also learn what connections you share I used it to find a health editor at NPR and found we are in the same group, so that they can be added to my network I used the search feature to find freelancers that write about my client’s industries By doing searches, I can pull up the journalist’s exact name and bio Knowing information about his biography gives me an edge and insight in how to approach them For example, we may have gone to the same university, lived in the same city, or be related (just kidding!)
I can also learn information about their beats and topic areas they cover, so I can shape my pitch I can view a photo of the journalist which helps see their human side.

When my clients do book tours, I can search for bloggers,radio hosts, anchors, and print journalists in the cities they are touring to try to get my clients an interview while they are promoting their book.

The information gleaned from the search is much more valuable than what I might find in a media directory because it includes many details not found in media directories.

For more placements, it makes sense to know as much about the outlet and journalist as possible. Using the search box on LinkedIN doesn’t cost a dime Some may find the search tedious, but it’s worth the effort to research as much as possible about the journalist or blogger’s background The value of using LinkedIn searches is that you can also see your connections that you share with individual people I joined a group on LinkedIn called “This Is Media” and it’s a group populated by journalists, writer, bloggers, radio hosts, TV producers-perfect for my purposes as a publicist. I plan to schedule an hour a day on doing searches and making new media contacts to get my clients more placements.

Answering questions on LinkedIn is a great way to rasie your profile and credibility as an author and thought leader on your area of expertise. You can also suggest one of your contacts as an expert.

The LinkedIn members who ask the question, also award points for the best, thought answer. This can lead to recognition on the LinkedIN’s expert list.

Finding Radio /TV Hosts and other media on LinkedIN:

I use the search box on LinkedIN using the drop down menu option “Find People.” LinkedIn pulls up their bio and company information. In addition, their websites are listed. When I find the source I want to connect with, I go to thier website, and contact them through the e-mail listed there, rather than via LinkedIN. if you don’t use LinkedIn for anything else, use it as a research database. It’s great for doing research, and the best part is that it’s free.

Ideas for Getting National Media Coverage

 

Media Relations

Having your insight featured in a news article can give you instant third-party credibility, and hence establishing relationships with influential reporters can be key to your success. As a public relations professional, I have access to at least 100 reporters a day that are working on stories across wide-ranging industries and that I’m in contact with in order to provide them with the expertise they need. I also use a professional distribution service that helps me reach 5,500 media outlets and 10,000 reporters a day.  I think opening an account with ProfNet is one of the best ways to get national media coverage.

This next section discusses one of my most popular programs that my clients love, and features a few samples of how I create an expert alert.

Get Your Insight Featured In National Media Today

What is continuous media exposure worth to you and your business?

O’Neal Media Group will write and distribute a US1 media advisory to thousands of busy journalists seeking your expertise today. One of the best ways to get quoted by the media is to follow the news cycle and tie your expertise to breaking news stories.

We monitor the latest studies and surveys in your industry, to keep you ahead of the pack. The media advisories we issue are distributed to 5,500 media outlets nationally and to 9,000 journalists hungry for story ideas. Our clients have been contacted by the BBC, local and national media that resulted in placements. I routinely monitor the news cycle in order to tie my client’s expertise and position them as an expert. It’s one of our most popular programs. Here are some samples that garnered major media placements:

The following content was featured on a nationally syndicated radio show, “Dresser After Dark”:

BEHAVIOR: Contrary To What Feminists Have Said, Men Are Not Disposable.

Dr. Beth Erickson, Ph.D., speaker and author based in Edina, Minn., can discuss why both fathers and mothers are important in children’s lives:  “In light of the The Shriver Report, the share of women who are unmarried has skyrocketed: 40 percent of women over age 25 are now unmarried and  a record 40 percent of children born in 2007 had an unmarried mother. While divorce rates have fallen, many women delay and some never even enter marriage.  Is society chalking fathers up to be superfluous, so that fathers are internalizing the cultural norm? Fathers and mothers are not identical  or interchangeable parts. With their reciprocal roles, each offers the child unique elements that contribute to its intellectual, psychological,  and social development. Both parents together and separately provide the supplies that are vital ingredients required for building a positive self-image for children and for helping them figure out how to constructively participate in society.” 
 
RELATIONSHIPS: How Couples Can Improve Interpersonal Communication.

Dr. Karen Gail Lewis, Ph.D., author of “Why Don’t You Understand? A Gender Relationship Dictionary,” can discuss how couples can improve interpersonal communication: “In light of the PBS series ‘This Emotional Life,’ America’s mind will be tuned to learning ways to foster well-being, which can include clearing up communication between the sexes. Couples often get into horrific entanglements — without understanding how they got there. They may start off with a simple question that, with no discernible explanation, erupts into an argument. One of them may walk out of the room, yell or go silent, which only inflames the other’s feelings. How does this happen? Sometimes, it’s as simple as one not accurately hearing what the other says, but reacting based on what was erroneously heard. Sometimes, it’s not recognizing that men participate better in a conversation if they are posed with a question or a problem to solve. A general comment, like women often make, leaves them waiting to hear what is expected of them. It can end up with her talking, his waiting for a question, her getting angry that he is not responding, his then getting angry at her for getting angry at him and the cycle continues.”