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Should you use Facebook or Google+?

When any new tool is introduced to professionals, the age old question is “which do I use now!?” Let’s take a look at combining these tools, not choosing.

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Google+ came out and confusion hit

Ever since Google+ entered the social media sphere several months ago, there has been a running debate and argument amongst industry experts all over the country. Facebook or Google? Which one is better? While similar in purpose, the reality is that both have something different to offer today’s small business.

Instead of arguing over which one is better and superior to the other, it would really be wiser to think about how you can use the two sites together to grow your brand’s exposure. All it takes is a little strategizing.

The benefits of both sides

For all-intensive purposes, I should first explain the benefits of both sites. Facebook, being the powerhouse that it is, serves the “social” function much better than any other site of its kind right now. The most people are on it, and the fact is that it gets used more often and frequently than any other social networking site. For that reason, you need to be active on Facebook and use it as an interactive tool. This is the site you will want to go to for the actual engagement involved in your marketing. This is the site that will allow you to build relationships with those who are interacting with your brand and hopefully convert them into clients.

Google+, on the other hand, is beneficial for building your SEO and showing up higher on the search engine rankings. The profiles and business pages on Google+ allow you to hyperlink to other elements of your online presence within your description and about me sections as well as provide a great sidebar outlining links to all other aspects of your brand online.

The more time you spend making your Google+ profile as optimized as possible, the more that information will be indexed into Google’s engine and the more likely it is that you will move up the search engine rankings. This is the benefit of using a Google-based platform. One more thing: if other Google+ users connect with your page on the site, then the next time one of their contacts searches for people in your industry on Google, your business will come up with their friend’s pictures underneath it. It’s the smart way to build your brand’s exposure.

Now, here is how to use them together

So there you have it. Facebook is best for interacting and engaging. Google+ is best for SEO and exposure. Both provide different benefits. Now it’s time to figure out how to use them together:

Post more frequently on Facebook, but keep Google+ populated too. You’re going to want more interaction on your Facebook page, so it makes sense that you’d post there every day and keep the content eye-catching and engaging. With that being said, you don’t want to create an optimized Google+ profile and business page and leave it sitting there. You want to focus your Google+ pages on promoting your brand, driving traffic to other elements of your online presence and posting engaging content a few times per week.

Make sure your Facebook fans are also giving your Google+ profiles the “+1”. The more people who connect with you on Google+, the more likely it is that your business will show up on page 1 of the search engine result pages. Remember, Google is starting to incorporate the “social factor” into their search results, so people will see the websites of those who their friends “recommend” via the Google+ platform.

Once you start utilizing both of these platforms for their strong attributes, you will find that social media can boost both your SEO and your engagement, which leads to more online traffic and business. Instead of partaking over which social media site is superior, use both for what they can do to take your online marketing efforts for the next level.

Carrie Gable & the Real Estate Virtual Assistant team at RealSupport, Inc. work virtually for many top real estate agents & brokers nationwide, offering marketing campaigns, branding, website & logo design, listing marketing efforts, lead management, technical support, marketing presentations, social media setup & management, copywriting, blogging and much more.

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5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. hugorealtor

    June 18, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    @REALTORdotcom @agentgenius Google+ ? We keep it updated because we feel “we have to” but it’s not a fun environment.

  2. imrphoto

    June 18, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    @JulieAnnHolden their purposes are intense, perhaps? XD

  3. scottkatvogeds

    June 19, 2012 at 7:15 am

    facebook is really far best them google+

  4. Jack Cassedy

    June 19, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    Google+ is good for SEO. Unless your target market is pretty strictly Google employees or internet marketers, you’re probably wasting time on Google+.

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Social Media

Don’t let your Instagram vanish without a trace – have a backup plan

(SOCIAL MEDIA) In a weird glitch, multiple Instagram accounts vanished out of thin air. Don’t be stuck up the InstaVanish creek without a paddle… or at least a backup in place.

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Poof, gone

Can you imagine being locked out of your own Instagram account for no rhyme or reason? Well, dozens of people just found out, and they are PISSED.

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Thankfully, we’ve got a solution to make sure you don’t lose out if it happens to you.

First, some context

According to coverage from Consumerist, “Several Instagram users began complaining about the disabled or deleted accounts on Twitter today [July 6], noting that they received no warning or explanation for why their accounts were no longer active. The affected accounts appear to cover a wide range of users, from business owners, to fan and personal accounts.”

Via Twitter, Instagram did acknowledge a known bug causing the issue and said, “we’re working to resolve this as quickly as possible.”

However, the response came hours after complaints began, possibly because the issue allegedly affected a very small number of user accounts.

Furthermore, while Instagram gave instructions to users on how to reconfirm their identities and recover their account, they aren’t guaranteed to work.

So, bearing all that in mind, we here at American Genius recommend backing up your entire account in order to preserve your content.

Use what they give you

If you still have access to your account, you can utilize Instagram’s recently-launched Archive function. This lets you take photos off public view without removing them from your account; only you will be able to see them.

However, this does you no good if you’re already locked out, nor does it save posts that are publically available.

For that reason, we recommend a third-party backup option for your profile content.

A’int no party like a third party

You have a few different options. Our favorite one utilizes IFTT (If This, Then That). Using this automation tool, you can write a conditional function that says if you post a new photo to Instagram, it will automatically be sent to a cloud drive, such as Google Drive, OneDrive or Dropbox.

Along with the benefit of multiple storage options, we love this solution because you can set it and forget it.

That being said, it is not a complete solution; IFTT will ONLY backup up new photos, instead of old ones. To backup your entire collection of old memories, Instaport seems to be a crowd favorite.

Instaport is a free service that lets you download a backup of your entire account.

Once you download this backup, you could upload it to your preferred cloud storage provider, then set IFTTT to send future backups into that same folder.

Better safe than sorry

Using these tips, you can avoid being a total victim of an Instagram screw-up. Hopefully, this recent one will resolve shortly.

#InstaVanish

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Social Media

How to quickly make your LinkedIn profile stand out from the masses

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Most of us have a love/hate relationship with LinkedIn, but no matter your feelings, you should be the one who stands out in a crowd – here’s how.

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Your LinkedIn is your brand. That’s it. Whether you are job hunting (or people are hunting you), or are showing off your business, insight, acumen, or simply networking; your profile on LinkedIn needs to stay appealing and not drive potential headhunters, bosses, clients, or networking groups bananas.

Let’s start with a three part list of what you MUST do, what you SHOULD do, and what you COULD do.

Here’s what you MUST DO (as in, do it now).

  1. Get a #GREAT LinkedIn photo. Nothing sells you like the right profile picture. No selfies. No mountain biking. Get a professional headshot. Don’t lie about your age. Wear what you wear when you’re on the job. Smile. People are visual.
  2. Simplify your profile. Cut the buzzwords. Cut out excess skills that don’t add to your vision or that don’t represent the kind of job you want. (i.e. most of us can use Outlook but few of us need to mention that skill because we don’t support Outlook). Focus on the skills that are important.
  3. Keep it current. Your LinkedIn should reflect your career and current responsibilities. Update the description. Add new projects. Change your groups as you change in your career and move towards new levels. Indicate when you receive a promotion.
  4. Extra, Extra! Headlines. Don’t use something lame for your headline. How would you want to catch a headhunter to look at you if you could only say 10 words? Make it standout. There are thousands of managers – but only one you.
  5. Custom URL. Just do it. Pick your own URL. It’s FREEEEEEE.
  6. Get the app. Make LinkedIn a part of your mobile life and check it more often than you do Snapchat.

Here’s what you SHOULD DO (Set aside some time at Starbucks and go do this in the next month).

  1. Tell your story. Your summary should bring to live the content of your career. Don’t leave that section blank. Spend some time crafting a cool story. Run it by your professional mentor. Send it to your English major friends.
  2. Connect. Add colleagues. Add partners from other organizations. Use connections to broaden your network. Synch your profile with your address book. Add people after a conference.
  3. Endorse your connections. Identify people you’ve worked with and give them the endorsements – which can get them to come endorse you!
  4. Ask for recommendations. Ask a colleague, partner, or manager to write you a recommendation to help advertise your skills.
  5. Add a nice cover photo. Again, visual people. Some more on that here.

Here’s what you COULD DO (If you’re feeling dedicated, what you can do to give yourself an extra edge.)

  1. Share your media. Upload presentations, videos, speeches, or projects that you can share. (Don’t violate company policy though!).
  2. Publish original content. LinkedIn has a vibrant publishing feature and sharing your original work (or content you’ve published elsewhere) is a great way to share your voice.
  3. Post status updates. Share your reactions. Share articles. Repost from influencers. Be active and keep your feed vibrant.

That’s a quick list to get started. So go start your LinkedIn makeover (and I’ll go do the same). Let’s get connected!

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Innovative widget places Instagram Stories right on your website

(SOCIAL MEDIA NEWS) Increase your social media reach with this neat new free to use Instagram Stories widget for your company website or personal portfolio site.

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Instagram Stories are a great way to integrate video into your marketing strategy. If you’re already investing time and money in this successful strategy, might as well feature Stories on your website too, right?

Well lucky you, Fastory recently released a free widget to add Instagram Stories directly to your site to feature your nifty marketing efforts on desktop. Even though mobile is still dominant with younger generations, desktop users need some love and access to Stories, too.

Fastory CEO Sylvain Weber noted the “widget is the only one fully based on the brand new Instagram Graph API (no private API, validated by Facebook himself).” This pretty much means Fastory is ahead of the game with the newly opened up API, and are basically development pioneers.

Drive awareness and build loyalty by spreading the wonder of your Instagram Stories far and wide with the Stories Widget. Simply log in to Facebook to get the widget, then sync your Instagram Stories stream.

Next, all you have to do is copy the provided HTML code and paste it on your website. Hooray, now you have a widget that automatically updates your website with your latest Stories.

Keep in mind you’ll need an Instagram Business Account for this to work.

If you have more than one business Instagram linked to Facebook Pages, just select the one you want to use from the drop-down menu when getting the widget code.

You can continue that process to select multiple Instagram accounts and generate widget codes for each of them.

Free for a limited time, you can also utilize the Memories feature, keeping a collection of your Instagram Stories on your site instead of having them disappear after twenty-four hours like usual.

All the Stories featured on your site also include a “follow us” button to encourage user engagement and gain you more followers.

Looking for help jazzing up your Instagram Stories? Fastory was originally created as an easy to use design platform to create and customize Stories.

Their mobile-first marketing suite offers drag & drop design featuring animated headlines crafted in Adobe After Effects, fonts from Google Web Fonts, and motion design.

Story creation and editing is collaborative with varying roles and levels of privileges. Plus, you can track visitors in real time to identify drop off points and areas for improvement. Contact Fastory for Story creation pricing information.

And on the free end of things, check out the Instagram Story Widget.

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