Tag Archives: LinkedIn

How Will Businesses Use Social Media in 2015?

How will business owners and social media strategists refine the way they engage potential customers on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and other social media channels in 2015?

“Overall, we see social media beginning to reach its potential as a marketing tool – businesses are finding they can use social media channels to sell their products or services while maintaining an authentic voice that social media is famous for,” says Bernard Perrine, CEO and co-founder of SocialCentiv, a Twitter marketing tool designed to help businesses find new customers on Twitter.

Perrine predicts businesses will find success with these top trends in 2015:

Targeting audiences. Instead of trying to reach the masses to find a handful of customers, the idea is to specifically target several small, tailored groups of people via the social media channel that you are most likely to reach them on. That way, companies are reaching more people who are relevant to their business and more likely to become customers.

Blending paid and owned content. As marketers have perfected their social media strategies, they have found that blending their paid and owned media together lets them get their content out to more people while keeping costs down and still maintaining an authentic voice. Striving to find the perfect blend of paid and owned media will be the challenge in 2015.

Enlisting employees to help share. When employees are sharing their company’s social media content on their own channels, businesses cash in with a higher organic reach and engaged employees who feel passionately about the company. How should a business organize this effort? Simply ask!

Laughing it up! Social media marketers have found that one of the best ways to resonate with their followers – many of which are Millennials – is to be silly and give them a good laugh. Businesses can achieve this through pictures, videos or even corny jokes. Humor has boundaries – make sure that jokes are within good taste, tied to the business and relevant.


Social Media Marketing – George Brown College

social media marketing
social media marketing

This past winter I had the privilege to teach my first ever course at George Brown: Twitter Marketing. Well, it seems my students liked me enough that the powers that be at George Brown College have agreed to have me teach the Social Media Marketing courseWe’ll go through some social media history, take an in depth look at the popular tools of the day, and empower students to be able to create a social media strategy.

There’s still some space if you’re interested in registering. Classes start soon!


The Problem With LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a very valuable tool for professionals and companies alike. For example, many people have used the recommendations feature to help them increase their employment and career goals and aspirations. Many companies have used LinkedIn’s vast source of data to search for new talent.

When people have a problem with LinkedIn, most of the time (although the platform is far from perfect), it’s because of the way individual people use it.

Take the following as a case in point:

I don’t mind connecting with people I know on LinkedIn. I also don’t mind connecting with people I don’t yet know but who might work in the same office as me. However, this one made me laugh hard:


I am a person he trusts yet he doesn’t know me. So why the heck should I connect!? Should I connect?

Don’t get fooled by LinkedIn

Earlier last week news came out that former 100-metre world record holder Asafa Powell and Sherone Simpson (both also current sprinters) tested positive for banned stimulants at the Jamaican championships in June.

In the middle of the subsequent investigation is Toronto-resident Chris Xuereb. Apparently, Xuereb was hired to help the athletes recover from injuries. How Xuereb was able to even obtain access to these athletes is now under suspicion too. At least by some.

Why? Well, on Xuereb’s LinkedIn profile it states that he was a member of the 2004 Argo Grey Cup Champions. (Xuereb’s account seems to have been shut down.) According to an interview with the Toronto Star, spokesperson Eric Holmes stated, “We have no employment record for Chris Xuereb, and I can confirm he was never employed by the club.”

Which brings me to my pain point: Don’t get fooled by LinkedIn.

LinkedIn is a great tool that allows people to network with other people based on their professional “resume”. However, one must do some extra “homework” before entering into any type of business/employment relationship with a person:

  1. While Endorsements seem to be the equivalent of the Like button, it is still important to see what people are recommending and how often they recommend an individual.
  2. Does their profile include any other contact information such as email, phone number, blog or other social media profiles? While not everyone needs to have a blog or Twitter account, there should be some other ways of connecting with an individual.
  3. Recommendations. Anyone worth their salt should have for than just a few recommendations. If your candidate has none: sirens should be blaring in your head.

These are just a few simple tips to help determine whether a person on LinkedIn is really who they say they are. How do you use LinkedIn?

Rapportive makes me smarter on email

If you’re like me, you love using social media to connect with family, friends and even strangers. But you probably see huge value in continuing to use email to further solidify personal and business relationships.

Many saw the demise of email as social started creeping into the work force. However, I have (as I’m sure many of you) been using email more. Firstly, it’s hard to convey a message in only 140 characters. Second, attachments are almost impossible to send on social too.

I actually see a symbiotic relationship between social and email. And this relationship is made that much stronger via a cool app called Rapportive (recently purchased by LinkedIn).

Rapportive is an email plugin (I use GMail) that uses people’s emails to connect to that person’s social media accounts (It’s like my very own social media spidey sense.) Here’s a snapshot of what mine looks like:

social media strategy

How do I use Rapportive? To better personalize my emails. Some may call it creeping. I call it being smart. I can check the recipient’s public social status updates to further understand who I’m emailing. And thus can craft a message that is also timely and more effective. If I can see (via Twitter, for example) that the person I’m messaging spent a wonderful day at the beach with her son, then I may use that in the email. For example, “Hello Mary. I hope you had a great weekend at the beach with the family…..”

I do want to point out that I would use this sort of information when I email someone I actually know. But the same process can be used when emailing someone I may not be close to. Social media data can tell me lots of things. I might be able to determine that the recipient likes a certain brand or communicates in a certain way. This sort of information can help me not just send a more relevant email. It will also help me communicate more efficiently and effectively with this individual over time.

And that’s the power not just of Rapportive but of social media. Remember: It’s about being social.

Why Klout (aka influence) is Important

Like it or not influence matters.  And chances are you’re not sitting on the fence on this one.  Especially when it comes to online influence. You either love Klout or you hate Klout.  

You love Klout because you either understand what they are trying to achieve.  Or if you’ve received a free bag of chips.

You hate Klout because you’ve never “won” anything in your life or your score is lower than 50. Or you don’t believe in what Klout is attempting to build.

But if I asked you if influence matters you would have to agree with me.  Think about it for a moment:

  1. have you “liked” something on Facebook?
  2. ever “retweet” something on Twitter?
  3. have you ever forwarded an email or online article?
  4. do you refer products or services you enjoy to your friends?

You answered yes to at least one question above.  And by doing so you’ve exerted your influence over someone else.  And I believe this is what Klout wants to capture:  The influence you, others and myself have in comparison to others.

Is Klout perfect just yet?  Of course not.  And it may never be.  But here’s the question you should ask yourself:

Will you stop forwarding good content to your sphere of influence?  Of course not.  And that’s why Klout is important.

What say you?