Twitter Targets Advertisers

TWITTERVERSEIn 2010, Twitter announced that it would begin showing advertisements. Up until now, it has allowed people to promote their Tweets or to promote their accounts for the purpose of gaining followers and exposure. In March of 2012, Twitter launched limited availability of a self-serve tool for purchasing ads and in February, 2013 they launched an Ads API for programmatic buying of huge campaigns. Unfortunately, for three years businesses could only access these tools through invitation only.

However, it wasn’t until last week that Twitter announced their ads could target keywords of Tweets, or Tweets that users engage with, allowing Twitter to compete with Google and Facebook ads. Twitter strived to make the new self-serve interface as user friendly as possible allowing just about anyone to navigate without question. Once you decide on what media you want to use and your budget you can build your own campaign by targeting your market’s location, and interests. Coupled with promoted Tweets and accounts, users can also use Twitter’s Business Analytics to track the impact of their marketing efforts.

“…Today we’re taking the next step and opening up Twitter ads to everyone in the US; Every brand, every business, every account, every individual…”

Twitter has proved itself as a worthy form of communication as major news outlets refer to the Twitterverse for insight on opinion, breaking news, or even disasters from around the world. With social media constantly evolving it’s only a matter of time before the majority of businesses are fully integrated with all platforms. This means that businesses are competing for a limited amount of followers and more so, the engagement of those people within their own networks. When the chance comes around to amplify your voice and reach more people it only makes sense to sign up and try to be heard.

Author: Anthony Baisi

How to Monetize your Social Media

http://www.myviralweb.com/featuresWith social media getting older by the minute, people are getting wiser and finding their way around the clutter. Sure, there’s plenty of nonsense and useless memes but there’s still relevant and creative merit out there waiting at every corner. If you’re a small business owner, finding the right platforms that run parallel with your business goals is a tedious but rewarding task as they will soon be the catalyst in your online strategy.

I’ve found that for every business structure there is around 4 or 5 social networks that are relevant and hold potential for business development. For instance, a business that is service based would have less success than a business that is product based on Instagram, Pinterest, and Flickr. But those that are service based can have more success on Twitter, Linkedin, or even Four Square.

The point is that there is a unique environment in every social media platform that demands a certain type of content and promotion. If you’re a little cafe or restaurant don’t be afraid to get interactive with your clients, put a sign in your window indicating a social media contest: Enter your picture of your favourite XYZ dish and you’ll be entered to win a free XYZ meal every day for a month! You can do this with food, coffee, or pretty much anything you can take a picture of.

The tedious part in finding your business’ preferred social networks is A/B Testing. I sat down last night with a photographer friend and we went over the social networks he was on and the ones he’s made sales on. Obviously, you want to focus more on the channels that drive your development but you also want to diversify and reach into different segments without stretching yourself thin.

Don’t feel by setting up a Google+ account that you have to stay consistent with it, if it’s not for you, it’s not for you. However, pay attention to where your competitors are, if they’re already on Google+ maybe you should stay on and post content regularly. Going back to my photographer friend, he didn’t want to post his work on Pinterest because of their user terms. I suggested that he could just post the pictures that he’s already sold on Pinterest in hopes of using them for promotion and potentially driving traffic to his point of sale.

I think a lot of new business owners, free lancers, artists, and people with little online marketing know how often get intimidated by social media marketing. I’ve found that people are often misinformed, intimidated or they feel like it doesn’t apply to them or their business structure. Look at what we’re achieving with social media:  civil uprisings went viral, we increased political involvement, we documented and monitored war, and we ensured a sense of internet freedom.

Social media isn’t going anywhere and with its maturity more people will catch on. The question is: will you be left behind?

Author: Anthony Baisi

What’s Missing in your Social Media Strategy?

Have you ever tried to have a conversation with someone underwater as a kid? First, it doesn’t really work and second, the life guards don’t really appreciate it. Listening to the market is one of the most important things that social media allows us to do. It allows you, the business owner, or marketer to follow trending conversations, curb dissatisfaction with proper customer service and to win over those second guessers. Before we had social media, marketing was considered a monologue like talking in an empty room, or underwater for that matter. Social media brought the guests to the party and now it’s up to you to mingle, to create connections that are relevant and that could potentially benefit your business.

Before we get into the benefits of social media and the importance of branding I wanted to introduce the trend of online ventures, entrepreneurs, and business that we’ve seen in the last couple of years. In lieu of this continual climb of online businesses there will be an increased demand for social media and online marketers in general. With that being said I think it’s safe to say that we’re going to see a lot of social media marketing blunders and champions in the next few years as well. I’m sure that we all agree when I say that we would like to see more champions out there as that means us, as marketers are doing a great job!

When I’m working with clients to build a strategy for their online campaign and social media accounts I stress diversification. For example: Say my client is a photographer and when targeting people on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Google+, etc. I suggest they target: stylists, salons, acting/modeling agencies, fashion boutiques, etc. This is instead of just targeting photographers, photo shops, photographer communities or anything in the photography industry. I believe that by starting with a diversified manner in mind there is more opportunity for the business to grow in multiple directions.

Diversifying your market helps to build segment pools for your target market which would eventually lead into a primary segment, a secondary, and so on. Building pools early in the launch allows the business to see which demographic they are getting the most reactions from. The segmented pools also suggest which segments deserve more attention and allocated resources. The only thing to be careful with when you diversify your market is the content you share, will it offend some people or will it be shared with positivity?

I also believe that branding is a very important element in running social media personas. What I mean from that is the “gut feeling” you get from viewing a brand’s profile page. Anyone should be capable of building an image of what the company is all about through the content that they share. Make sure the content you share is relevant, consistent and witty in some manner to encourage people to engage, share or like it. Although, those kittens or miniature pigs are cute you have to ask yourself if this is consistent with your company’s branding, but that’s what personal pages are for, right?

Author: Anthony Baisi

Behind the Scenes: Artspoints Introduces New Rewards Program for the Arts in Canada

I’m not one that’s particularly creative but I’ve always dabbled in the arts, specifically music and illustration. For three years I worked on Granville Island and if you don’t know the area it’s a hub for visual and performing arts. Emily Carr University and The Arts Club Theatre are both located on the island as well as many other studios, venues and theatres, which host all kinds of shows. It was only a matter of time before I started talking to the regulars, artists, supporters and students about the well being of our nation’s performing arts.

I was surprised at first, but tartspointshe more I thought about it the more I agreed that Canada’s art scene is kind of struggling. The challenges boil down to many variables such as price, availability, interest, revenue distribution, and the many other activities that compete for our time. I remember in University we would have discussions about the industry couldn’t lower their prices in order to encourage more young adults to go to the opera, plays or ballet. Artspoints is taking a different approach to the problem, but they have developed a way to help drive more people to attend arts events, and in turn, to increase their revenue.

Last winter was my first time ever going to the ballet and it was amazing! The only thing I was a bit hesitant about was the  fact that tickets were $80.00 a piece. With Artspoints not only will the ticket buyers earn points that can be redeemed for tickets, but just like the Cineplex Scene card it will attract and build more loyal customers.

Artspoints works by rewarding their Members when they buy tickets, or shop at, participating merchants with points they can then be redeemed for tickets to the arts. These points can be redeemed at any of the partner venues from coast to coast to coast, and Artspoints buys those tickets from the arts organizations so they aren’t losing revenue. Artspoints’ mandate is to draw larger crowds to the opera, symphony, theatre, film, visual and the  literary arts with the power of a loyalty program.

Just think of all the arts organizations across the country that can benefit from more ticket sales and more revenue. This will mean more shows and sold out venues.

I think that Artspoints is exactly what this nation needs in order to increase the awareness and support of the arts.
Canada is home to many diverse and talented performers ready to show you what they can do. Will you be there?

Author: Anthony Baisi