An Incredible Guide to Use Social Media for Business

Remember how “Paper Boat” created a mass engaging campaign on social media last year? It actually made them become one of the brightest stars of the startups in India. Not only the newbies, but the well-known companies like Make My Trip, AirBnB and Nike plus Social awareness groups like Deepika Padukone’s Live Love Laugh Foundation used the power of Social Media to create ripples on the World Wide Web. If used in a right manner, Social Media can give a massive upsurge to your business.

Let us see how:

Using Digital Media is an inexpensive deal. If your brand is cool, it can get cooler with the hype you can get on Social media. Considering the rise of internet usage in India, we are adopting the digital trends with a really fast pace. So, it has become really essential to have a digital profile.

Make sure to use these Social Media tips in your campaigns:

Post videos: The rate of video engagement is really very high. There are predictions that digital videos can replace the ads on TV. Keeping this in mind, if you invest on videos, you can get true engagements on social media. Live video streaming, creating personal stories as web series, vlogs and making engaging videos related to your business can help you gain more traffic.

Upload personalized content and creative pictures: If your content and images are catchy, unique, personalized and speaks of the brand’s story, you can get more likes. People are bored of the monotonous and old fashioned stock image of brands. Posts including fresh content and creative pictures related to real activities help in gaining more traffic on social media.

Concentrate more on Mobile: As we all know that Smart Phones are slowly replacing internet usage on desktops. So, create the content which is mobile friendly. Also, create posts for the local audience and distribute it according to the right format, time and location. It will help you in targeting maximum people.

Create technology driven posts: No matter how and what we think about Artificial Intelligence, we are curious about it, and we love to read and discuss it. As we all are embracing the machine culture to our everyday life, putting it on Social Media can create interesting engagements. Creating posts related to technology, innovations, facts related to technology and Artificial Intelligence can help you gain more traffic. You can club technology with travel sector, health care, education and even the daily activities like using home appliances and equipment. It not only makes life easier but can help you grab more likes.

Hire a professional: Handling Social Media for business is a little different from posting from your personal account. You should always hire the professionals for the job, if you think you are not handling it correctly. People who are professional understand the trends, they know how to make strategies and how to deal with issues coming on the way. They know how to get more engagements on your content and they can create impressive digital marketing posts. They have the knowledge of the major platforms and they can offer a seamless lift to your current status on the web. You can also outsource your digital media to the agencies working in the field.

Be available: There is no particular time on which a potential customer can visit you and look for business. So, it is always suggested that, be available to your audience, if not 24×7, at least during your work hours. Reply all the questions asked by your visitors, if you cannot do that on the spot, make sure to tell them to wait and once you can, answer the questions. Having conversations with people who pitch you on digital media can help you in getting recognition. Reply to your messages and comments. Be thankful when they share your posts, it will create communication and improve your social media reputation.

Use meaningful Hashtags: Hashtags are popular and you can get a lot of traffic to your digital media profiles with the use of this powerful tool. It helps in categorizing the posts and making your content noticeable to people who are looking for similar stories. It will also help you in discovering the posts from your competitors. With the help of hashtags you can connect with various brands and people of similar interest and create an engagement. Using hashtags, which are related to your business can bring a massive traffic.

Now, when you know the tips for making engaging posts, creative images and impressive content for your social media campaign, let us check where to put these posts.

Here are the popular platforms for social media:

Facebook: As we all know that Facebook is one of the top social networking sites in the world and it tops in India, it can give you great business. Ever since Facebook came, more and more people are joining it. You can create your business account on Facebook or start a fan page. It is one of the best platforms for any business to get global audience.

Facebook Messenger: Also known as Messenger, it offers text, voice and video communication and you can use it for the promotion of your brand and also for telling your customers about the new things happening in your company.

Google Plus: People were not very sure of its success when it was launched in 2011, but today there are more than 500 million users on Google+, which is also known as G+. You can easily add people of similar interests and organize your connections with this platform. It has a global reach and you can post and share your images, texts, videos and web links on G+. Being a product of Google, it helps in indexing the content on Google really fast.

Twitter: It is a micro-blogging site which offers a unique feature of sending your messages in 140 characters. If you can be miser on characters and you know how to build unique and catchy content, you can advertise your business effectively. You can interact, communicate, pass information, talk about the latest news and target your audience with your products by using Twitter. It is a powerful platform where you follow people and they do the same. You can like or re-tweet posts which you find interesting and send personal messages on DM (Direct Message).

LinkedIn: It is a professional community where people can build their business or professional profiles. If you want to connect with professionals working in the similar field LinkedIn is the perfect platform. Here you can check the profiles of professionals because it has their education qualification, past work experiences, business network. Also, if you want to build a network of local professionals, you will find countless registered users.

YouTube: Founded by three former PayPal employees, YouTube is the most popular platform for video sharing. Each month, more than 1 billion visitors hit the website. You can upload your videos and reach maximum potential clients through video advertising on YouTube.

WhatsApp Messenger: For instant texting, WhatsApp is a great platform which you can use for your business. You can share texts, images, videos and voice clips through your Smart phone or Tablet. It is an effective platform for instant communication with your customers. You can also run your company’s ad campaign on WhatsApp.

Instagram: Instagram is a Social Networking platform where you can upload your pictures and videos. It has an amazing feature of filters through which you can edit your pictures and this makes Instagram a unique platform loved by millions of users. Instagram came in 2010, and Facebook bought it in 2012. Since then, the number of people on Instagram has up surged in a very high pace (as Instagram is linked to Facebook profile). Popular for its hashtags, Instagram can help in getting your business content viral instantly.

If you are not a part of these platforms, you must join these and start uploading your stories. It will not take much time to reach your target. So, you know what to upload of Social Media, where to post your content, your work will not end here, you will have to monitor your activities and the results. So that if you are not getting the desired traffic or result, you can change the strategy or work harder.

Managing and monitoring Digital Media:

It is not an easy task to manage all your accounts for Social Media and it is a time consuming task to login and log out from each of the sites. To make your task easier, you should start using Hootsuite and to manage your multiple Twitter accounts Tweetdeck is a perfect option.

· Hootsuite: It is one of the amazing options to monitor your postings on social media. It helps you in checking any activity involving your company or name. It also shows the areas of your interest.

· Tweet deck: If you use Twitter, you must not miss this resource. It will help you in managing multiple Twitter accounts plus it helps in organizing the mention and other engagements. You can jump into any topic of interest by searching it instantly.

Analyzing your social media insights:

To analyze the insights of your social media for business, you can use any of these services:

HubSpot: If you want to see how far your social media efforts have gone, you must use this resource. It will let you know all about your social media posts.

Facebook Page Manager: If you run a Facebook fan page, you must check the insights. It will help you in monitoring the traffic. You can check the most popular posts, from where the traffic comes and you can also connect with your audience by replying to them directly.

Seesmic: For those who want to manage all the Social Media accounts from a single resource, this is a great application. You can use Seesmic on your desktop as well as a Smart Phone.

Klout: Another amazing platform to check your Social Media reach is Klout. It helps in checking the most popular hashtags, posts and your overall progress of the Social Networking Sites.

As It Happened – Relationship Status Investigation

Sometimes I wonder if technologies have helped us in making our life simpler or it has made it more complicated. Whether social media and social applications are meant to bring us closer to one another or to drift us apart? What do you need to know about an individual before you start giving your trust to them? Do you think if you talk to people once in a month, chat with them on WhatsApp every day and meet them once or twice in a year, is enough to trust them? If your answer is yes, then read further.

It was Friday night at around 11 PM when I received numerous messages on my WhatsApp from my friend, Sheetal Katkar, asking me to investigate about and get some information about Dronesh Mishra, who is based out of Nagpur. I was feeling very sleepy and at that point of time, I didn’t even care to read the entire text.

I know Sheetal for last 12 years. We might not be best of the buddies but we know enough about each other to fit into the definition of friendship. She is from Nagpur. In last 12 years, there were occasions when we didn’t communicate with one another for a couple of years and there were occasions when we stayed in touch on a daily basis for 7-8 months in a year. Sheetal is 35 years of age and working in Bangalore in the back-office of a leading bank.

Next day morning while taking my morning tea, I read the entire text shared by Sheetal on my WhatsApp. However, I decided to verify few details before wearing my investigation hat. “Who is this Dronesh? Why do you need to know about him? How did you know him?” I asked.

“Dronesh is known to my sister, Pooja since December 2014. She found him on one of the leading matrimony sites. Pooja is working with Software Development Company in Bangalore; while Dronesh is working in Delhi with an IT giant. They want to get married. Only once did I meet this guy and I found him decent. He is in touch with me through WhatsApp. However, we don’t know much about him. We don’t know his address. We don’t know about his family. And most importantly, we don’t know if he is single or already married,” she summarized.

“What do you know about this guy”?

“Nothing”

“What does Pooja know about him? How often do they meet?”

“They have met on few occasions. They usually stayed in touch through WhatsApp, Google Talk, and daily phone calls. She knows about his family. He has widow mother. She knows about his job and about his future plans, etc. Having known to each other for last one year, now they want to get married. Even his mother is asking him to get married soon. He is already 35 years of age; while Pooja is 31 years old”.

“Okay. Message me his contact details”.

After about half-an-hour, I called her up.

“Sheetal, this guy doesn’t seem to exist. There is no one with this name on Facebook, or Twitter, or LinkedIn, or Instagram, not even on any Job Portal”.

“That’s what. He is not on social media sites. He says that he don’t like to be on FB and Twitter, it’s waste of time. He doesn’t want to be on LinkedIn because he doesn’t need it. That’s the challenge. How can we find out about him without his knowledge? We don’t have common friends. Pooja has already spoken to our parents and they have given expressive approval but even they need to meet his family and parents”.

In today’s world, when CEO’s of Fortune 500 companies are on LinkedIn; when everyone is on FB and Twitter, he is not there. He is working for an IT organization. That’s very strange. But what should I do now? That’s my challenge.

Let’s take help of another App, Truecaller. As I key in the number, I found the name of some Ranjeev Singh Thakur. I thought maybe Dronesh has taken help from his colleague or friend to get a phone number on their name, probably when he was new to Delhi. But it made my work a bit more difficult. The Social identity of Ranjeev Singh Thakur can either be Ranjeev Singh Thakur, or it can be Ranjeev Singh or maybe Ranjeev Thakur.

Let’s try.

On LinkedIn, I found FIVE profiles with the name of Ranjeev Singh Thakur – TWO profiles with Display Pictures (DP’s) and THREE without Display Pictures. I downloaded both DP’s and sent to Sheetal and asked her to identify if one of them is Dronesh. To my surprise, she identified one of them as Dronesh.

“Are you sure”, I asked. In a case of any doubt, ask your sister to reconfirm.

After half an hour, she called back and reassured one of them as Dronesh.

For a moment, I was speechless and didn’t know how to react and what to say. The guy Pooja was meeting as her probable future husband, Dronesh was in real Ranjeev Singh Thakur. He wasn’t working with IT giant, as claimed by him but working with a Financial Service Company as Area Sales Manager.

Anyways, I called up both the sister, took them in a conference call and broke the news. They were equally shocked as I was.

Another fact that I found from his Twitter post was a fact that he was married 2011. Whether he is still married or not, I am not sure but he was married in 2011. Ranjeev has created a Gmail account with the name of Dronesh Mishra and he was using this identity to register on matrimonial and other social sites. Through this identity, he was communicating with at least ELEVEN females from across India.

At the end of it, I was uncertain of my emotions. Should I feel happy to have saved the life of a female OR should I feel sad for creating more problems for her?

The investigation was one part of this story. The complicated and more dangerous part was the confrontation, realization, and acceptance. At first, Dronesh refused to accept his identity as Ranjeev. But when we asked him to show his passport or Pan Card or Bank Account Statement, he accepted it. He apologized to Pooja and asked her to marry him. He further said that he has divorced his wife in 2013.

Pooja was hurt. She felt cheated. She didn’t want to keep any communication with him. As we say in the language of social media, she blocked his number. He wasn’t an easy net to crack. He began to stalk her. He threatened her to leak their intimate pictures and videos on the internet. Finally, we took the help of police. At the time of writing of this story, he is in jail for last SIX months.

From this case, few things are very clear –

1) Though there are no right or wrong ways of dating and while dating you don’t carry identify or address proofs. Yet, I think you can find the real identity of an individual after 2-3 meetings.

2) On one side, where social media has given a platform to increase your visibility and create your personal brand; it has also given new masks to fraudulent people and criminals to hide their identity.

3) We are living in the age of selfies; where we like to capture everything around us, capturing our every special moment, however, use your personal judgment to decide the line of control. You don’t need to capture everything.

4) No matter what is your age; relationship development takes time. Where you find someone rushing into things then that is an indication for you to be alert and extra cautious. Relationships are another name of patience.

5) Lastly, break-ups, hurts, cheating, are parts and parcel of life. Don’t let it dent your passion for life and love for yourself. It is not an end of a world. It is a new beginning.

Had you been in the place of Pooja, how differently, you would have handled this situation? Do you think she could have handled in a better or a different way?

(This story is based on a true incident. Names of people and places have been changed to protect the identity.)

Watch The Change In Social Media Trends Over A Decade

In 1996, the major cornerstone of the social media was led. The most exciting and sensational social networking channels evolved with time. The social media hit the great strides with the launch of Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace and Friendster. Although around a decade ago some have anticipated the social trend as a passing fad while some proclaimed it as a new wave for the businesses.

But from beginning to the present times, in the race of acquiring a piece of a social pie, a lot of platforms have sprung up and died quickly because they are unable to get the optimum user base.

For instance, the Facebook rule the social realm with active 1590 million users and WhatsApp has garnered 7% of the market share in the shortest time.

Meanwhile, the social platform has created an important place and deeply ingrained into people’s lives, and now, it’s constantly scoring high on gaining huge user traction.

But, there are only a few apps that have earned maximum attention and they continuously doing so from the time they have launched.

There is a question. Why just a few platforms are progressing and rest have attained a stable state? Is the social media market has matured? Here is the answer.

The emergence and decaying of the number of social apps over the years inhibit the user to try the hands on new apps. Also, there is an uncertainty of when the downloaded app stops working, which makes the users count on just those apps that are on the top.

A few stats to share:

– 8 in 10 internet users globally visit/use social networks on their mobile devices.

– Around 1 in every 3 minutes spent online is devoted to social networking and messaging.

– 56 percent of the online adults use more than one of the five social platforms- Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest.

The impressive facts make the businesses collectively tap the social power and advanced technology for social media marketing activities to grow the business by leaps and bounds.

Let’s see where the businesses are heading towards in the social world:

– The rise of mobile era

The unprecedented growth of the mobile computing has entirely changed the way people access the social platforms and communicate. It comes to no surprise that with improved mobile usage, the increase in the social media users has also observed.

Instagram has received 20 billion images from the time the mobile app is developed.

The businesses are also tapping into the environment to enhance the brand awareness, the services they offer and allure the mobile social users that are interested in their services on-the-go.

– The real-time interactions

Getting the information about what has had happened in the world through the newspaper has become a thing of the past. Now, people believe in receiving the information at the moment it happens. The SMM is playing a vital role to disseminate the info.

The social media users find it easy to share the video on mobile that makes any news go viral in a matter of seconds. Businesses are monetizing at high leveraging the power of live streaming and video features that the leading social apps offering.

– AR and VR- the emerging technologies

The social platforms have understood that integration of the emerging technology is the way to keep exciting and enthralling the existing users and catch more eyeballs.

The deal that Facebook sealed in 2014 with Oculus VR Company and the implementation of Augmented reality by the Yelp are the great examples of it.

Both the technologies are really turning out to be a blockbuster in the social space with the creation of immersive audio-visual experience.

– Placing a bid over wearable technology

To let the users interact and experience the social media in a completely new form, the social channels are taking a step further towards hands-free technology with the emergence of wearable technology. The advent of new interfaces like- Smart glass, Smartwatch, Smart TV and a lot more to come in the future will stay at the top of the social trends.

Wrapping it up

The present of the social channels is quite exciting and it appears as if after embracing cutting-edge technology, all the sci-fis will turn into reality. But, the timeline cannot be set as the experimentation with the technology may bring positive results or get failed.

The growth stats of the businesses that are making the utmost use of the social for the social media marketing by hiring SMO services are exemplary. Also, the radical growth and the revolutionization of the social platforms in the next few years are guaranteed.

What’s your take? Are you ready to transition the business marketing from traditional platforms to the dynamic social platforms? If so, you will be getting the traction of 7 out of the 10 users. So, get set and go!