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A few days ago, I asked for you guys to submit your social media questions.  Social Media and Social Media Marketing are both giants that can easily overwhelm anyone who is using and working with them.  It’s not that hard.  Once you work out an efficient method to the madness, it’s a breeze (easier said than done, right?).

So let’s get started…

What is Google+?

Google+ is the newest and hottest thing going on with social media.  Google is entering the world of social media networking and introduced Google+ in the last 18 months.  Google+ has some videos introducing it on their Youtube Channel:

This is something that is suppose to eat into the social media network marketshare in 2012.  Just an example of it’s growth, in the January 4, 2012 blog post on Social Media Examiner posted, “Google+ Increases Traffic by 55%: Experian Hitwise shares statistics for Google+ that show a significant increase in December 2011 compared to November 2011.”

Social Media Examiner posted a great article on Dec. 16, 2011 about Google+, “What Google+ Will Become a Social Media Powerhouse.”  It’s a great article and I agree with it wholeheartedly.

Now that you know about it, how do you set up a business page?  Follow these step-by-step instructions and you will be on your way.

Need an example?  Check out my Google+ profiles here:  Mandy Edwards (personal) or ME Marketing Services (business page).

Is Hootsuite going to integrate with Google+?

Yes!  Hootsuite is in the testing phase of integrating Google+ into their management program.  Right now it’s only open to their Enterprise clients.  There is no timeline set on when it will be opened up to everyone else.  This is something I personally am very excited about.  Right now, my Google+ accounts (personal and business) are the only accounts not linked up on Hootsuite.

What’s Twitter all about?

Tweet, Tweet!  I crack up when I say that.  Twitter is one of the social media juggernauts.  It’s a real-time status update platform.  To get it described exactly right, I went to the Twitter website.  They say, “Twitter is a real-time information network that connects you to the latest information about what you find interesting. Simply find the public streams you find most compelling and follow the conversations.

At the heart of Twitter are small bursts of information called Tweets. Each Tweet is 140 characters in length, but don’t let the small size fool you—you can share a lot with a little space. Connected to each Tweet is a rich details pane that provides additional information, deeper context and embedded media. You can tell your story within your Tweet, or you can think of a Tweet as the headline, and use the details pane to tell the rest with photos, videos and other media content.”

Twitter connects businesses to their customers in real-time. You can share information such as a fire sale, to their followers to help increase business.  Like any social media platform, the point is to engage your users.  Keep them informed.  Let them know you appreciate them.

I use Twitter, but am not as active as I should be.  My follower count is growing so I must be doing something on the right track.  If you want to follow me, click here!

Once you are set up on Twitter, you need to link that account up with your other social media accounts.  You can set up Twitter to post on Facebook.  You can use Hootsuite to keep up with posting across all of your accounts (see below for more information on Hootsuite).  Promote your Twitter account online and at your place of business and see you follower counts grow.  Just make sure you are active and tweeting at least once to a few times a day.  It’s very active!

What social media account management programs do you suggest?

There are many social media management programs, but to me, there’s only one – Sprout Social.  Their program allows you to manage your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts and the reporting is by far one of the best I’ve seen.  You can take their 30-day trial to see you for yourself.

I can only do so much social media.  What ones should I focus on?

This is a very good question.  Having multiple social media accounts, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.  To answer this, I would answer with…it depends on your business.  If you are a doctor, CPA, attorney or have a professional services business, I would steer clear from Twitter and stick with Facebook and Google+.  It would beneficial to have a profile set up on LinkedIn also.  I call LinkedIn the social resume.  If you are a restaurant or retail business, hey, even a car dealership, I would recommend Twitter or Facebook.  You want to look at your audience/target market. What age group are they?  Teens or College?  Moms or professionals?  Your audience dictates a lot of where you want to be.  For example, if you are in a college town and are a restaurant & bar, most if your audience is probably on Twitter and Facebook.  I would set up your posts to post to both and tweet out your Happy Hour or Lunch specials for that day.  Your followers will comment, share or retweet your specials, expanding your reach.  There are clothing boutiques where I live that will tweet out specials only available for that day for their followers or fans.  You can measure the respond of your efforts just by seeing who comes in.  I know I’ve mentioned it a couple times already, but I would first look at your target market and audience.  You want to be where they are.

How do you keep up with everything on social media and still have a business?

I ask myself this everyday!  It takes organization and efficiency to do it. Since my business is heavily into social media, I personally am on it all day, so it’s there.  If this is just a part of your business and you do all your social media stuff yourself, I would designate certain times to spend on it.  Maybe a little during lunch.  Maybe first thing in the morning when you get to work.  I subscribe to several social media newsletters that I can read when I get a few minutes either from my phone or my laptop.  That gives me my news and updates on what is going on in the social media world.  My personal favorites are Social Media Examiner and the Social Solutions Collective. In your account management, using a program like Hootsuite or Mediafeedia will help you keep your posts organized and prevent you from having to go to several different pages to post the same thing.

If you feeling overwhelmed with it all and finding you are not spending a lot of time focusing on your business, you can partner with a social media manager.  A social media manager can help make sure you are keeping your presence on the different social media networks while interacting and engaging your fans and followers.  This is a huge part of my business.  I manage close to a dozen pages and I see how having someone manage their social media frees time for the business owner to concentrate on their business.  This is a growing industry.  I personally see a lot of business owners who know they need to be on social media but simply do not have the time to do it.  That is where someone like me comes in.  It’s totally up to the business owner if they want to handle it themselves or have a social media manager.  Where I live, there are some who do a good job of handling it all – their business, their social media and their life.  But they are a minority.

 

I really enjoyed receiving all the questions and answering them.  If you are seeking help with your social media, I would love the opportunity to talk with you about how I can help.

Have a question I didn’t cover or read something that brought up another question?  Comment below and I will answer it!

 

About the author

Mandy Edwards Mandy is the founder of ME Marketing Services, a social marketing company located in Statesboro, Georgia. A proud graduate of the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia she has a thorough marketing background of over 12+ years covering sales, event planning, local store marketing, advertising and now social media. In the fall you can find her along with her family at Sanford Stadium cheering on their beloved Georgia Bulldogs. Mandy has been mentioned in Forbes and Crain's Chicago Business and was named to the Statesboro Herald's Top 20 under 40 for 2013.

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  • Carol Giambri

    Wow, Mandy, you filled my cup to overflowing with all this great information. I must print it out and read it again and again. So much wealth here. Thanks for sharing. It’s not my area of expertise and glad you have shared your wisdom as always! Thank you. Great info. Carol

    • memarketingservices

      Thanks Carol!!

  • http://www.sunshinelifecoaching.com Kim Hawkins

    Thanks for the info on Google+. It’s very helpful.

  • http://www.swallowtailconsulting.com Lorrie

    Wow! What a comprehensive article on the basics of social media. Working on the business (with social media strategies) is an essential part of an effective marketing strategy. You have a great resource for that work here. Thanks!

  • http://loveyourbusinessagain.com Jenn

    Setting up a schedule and choosing the proper channels to market to your ideal client are key. I was dabbling in 6 different social media platforms and quickly found myself burnt out!

    Choosing 2-3 allowed me to focus more on building the relationships with my ideal clients and staying consistent! Definitely worth it!

  • http://www.wow101.com Alexandra McAllister

    WOW! So much great information Mandy! This is certainly worth filing and sharing! Thanks so much!

    • memarketingservices

      Thanks Alexandra!

  • http://normadoiron.net Norma Doiron@Healthy|Wealthy|Wise

    Great information on Social Media, interesting to see that how Hootesuite will integrate Google+…. I’m still finding Hootesuite uncomfortable – I like Buffer & Crowdbooster… maybe SocialBro. Still not decided which one I will go with. Thanks for the info! x0x
    The LEARNED Preneur @ NormaDoiron.NET

  • http://alyssaavant.com Alyssa

    I cannot wait until Hootsuite intergrates with Google + I have trouble using it right now because it is hard to remember to go to. Never heard of those options @NormaDoiron Buffer, CrowdBooster and SOcialBro. New to me.

    • memarketingservices

      Same here – I’ll have to check those out too!

  • http://www.cherylcope.com/ Cheryl Cope

    I absolutely love Hootsuite myself and I am waiting patiently for it be integrated with Google +. Never heard of mediafeedia. Thanks for mentioning that one!! I will definitely look into it!

    • memarketingservices

      Mediafeedia is awesome! The web designer I work with is friends with the developers. Let me know what you think!

  • http://www.sherievenner.com Sherie

    Tons of great information here, Mandy! I appreciate you sharing this with us, will bookmark your page and refer back to it!

    • memarketingservices

      Thanks Sherie!

  • http://www.proriskemagazine.com Patricia Ogilvie

    Great content! thank you! I too do not use twitter as much as I could. I do however, love Hootsuite for accessing most of the social media sites. I’m still waiting for better apps to use on my blackberry – the iphones are the resource that most people use, but not yet as friendly as a plain ole computer! great job! P

    • memarketingservices

      Thanks Patricia! I love my iPhone but prefer to do a lot on my good ole PC :)

  • http://drmommyonline.com Dr. Daisy Sutherland

    Excellent Job Mandy!! I can’t wait for Hootsuite to integrate Google+..it will certainly make life easier:)

    • memarketingservices

      Me too!

  • http://blog.newhorizons123.com Julie Weishaar

    Wow Mandy – I think you got it all covered :) The rise of importance of Google+ will be interesting to watch and get involved with. I also would like to see Hootsuite integrate it into their platform – will certainly help us in trying to stay on top of our social media game.

  • http://www.ruinedmyweek.com Max M.

    Wow…this was such a helpful roundup! Thank you! Sharing it now…

  • Claudia

    You covered all the bases here!! I’ve been toying with Google + but keep getting stymied when I sign up. A little confused about how a business page would differ from a personal one – and when I go to log in it wants to use my gmail/google login to upgrade, but if I change the name, it will change across all my google apps….So, I have to decide if I want to do that, or start a new google account. The logging in and out is tiresome! Wish there was a way to toggle back and forth between users on google. Maybe there is and I haven’t found it. Thanks for all the info. Will have to digest it slowly! :)

    • memarketingservices

      The more I use Google+, the more I like it. I have a personal I set up with my business email and from there created the business page under that profile (just like you do on Facebook). I no longer use my personal google and just use my business. Once Hootsuite gets Google+ integrated into their program, it will be easier all around :)

  • http://www.myyogasecret.com Rhonda Uretzky

    I sometimes feel overwhelmed by social media until I remember what its all about at heart: community and making connections – no matter that these contacts are made online, they come from the heart and they truly connect people in conversations. This is the joy and the success I find in social media. When it gets too overwhelming, I go back to the roots: community, conversations, connections…and fun.

  • http://manifestingmydestiny.com/ Lorii Abela

    Great information on social media, Mandy. Like everyone, I am also waiting for hootsuite to integrate with Google+.

  • http://andreabeadle.com Andrea

    Wow! Great information thanks. Really looking forward to Google+ being integrated with hootsuite. It will make it so much easier to manage!

  • http://www.hodginswriter.net Rob Hodgins

    Thank you Mandy! There are a lot of useful answers here. I got into using social media last June, thought I had the knack of it and…well, I haven’t even started with Google+ yet!
    It’s so easy to fall behind in this fast paced world. That’s why posts like this one are so valuable.

  • http://DatingDivaSites.com Liz

    Thank you so much Mandy! I’ve worked in online marketing for 9 years marketing in the online dating industry. I got lazy and way behind in what was new and lost my organic traffic edge. I got a fanpage, google plus, google plus page, and twitter. I am trying to use social media to help my indexing again and everything I learn about using social media helps!

  • http://www.positivecalm.com Solvita

    Thank you Mandy, great information. I still have to open Google+, so I’ll come back to this post! :)

    • http://www.memarketingservices.com memarketingservices

      Thanks Solvita! Google+ is very easy to use :)

  • http://www.betterbusinessgrowthfaster.com/ AJ

    What great answers to some questions that almost every business owner has. Social is an awesome tool, and has a place in every business.
    You just need to figure out which tools are the best to communicate with your target audience.
    To figure this out, just start asking clients and prospects where they hang out online and get info.
    Great post,
    AJ

  • http://adamsorganizing.com Elise Adams @AdamsOrganizing

    What a great amount of information…lots I hadn’t heard yet. There seems to be so much to learn about this world. Thanks for helping me ‘catch on’.

  • http://www.WinningAtRomance.com Gina Parris

    Wow, this is one for the bookmarks for sure! What a lot of great info. Thanks so much for all the energy you put in to over deliver on answers!

    • http://www.memarketingservices.com memarketingservices

      Thanks Gina!

  • http://ibloom.us Kelly Thorne Gore

    Thank you SO much for all of the helpful info about Google+! I’m committed to getting on there THIS MONTH! I’m definitely bookmarking this post & sharing it with my other coaching friends!

    • http://www.memarketingservices.com memarketingservices

      Thanks Kelly! I appreciate that!

  • http://www.thestressreliefprogram.com Lisa Birnesser

    This was so informative, Mandy! I am so psyched about Hootsuite integrating Google+. It really will help me integrate Google+ into for social media campaign easily. Thanks so much!

  • http://howtobeasuccessfulteacher.com/ Lori

    Great information. I especially found the Google + helpful since that is an area I need to explore. Thanks!

  • http://www.el3mentsofwellness.com Carl Mason-Liebenberg

    This is packed with great information! Thank you for this awesome post! I cannot wait for the Hoostsuite and Google+ collaboration! Maybe then I’ll be a bit more faithful in my G+ activity!

  • http://www.JenniferHerndon.com Jennifer

    Great article on how to get started and organized with social media Mandy, thanks! I hear a lot of talk about Twitter and Facebook being the “must have” social media accounts, but I agree with you, Google+ is not optional. Mediafeedia is a new one for me, I’ll have to check it out.

  • Pingback: Social Media is there ever Enough and How can I Manage it all ?

  • http://beneciaponder.com Benecia Ponder

    This is an awesome article. It’s a great guide for someone like me who is very new to the social media scene. I am printing this out and keeping it in my reference file!

    • http://www.memarketingservices.com memarketingservices

      Thanks Benecia! If I can ever be of any help, please let me know!

  • http://www.Authenticlifeempowerment.com/blog Robin Tramble (@empowermentdiva)

    Hello Mandy, What an empowering and added value post. Thanks for sharing. Social Media is such a phenomenal tool. I haven’t really gotten into google+ or pinterest although one of my specialties is Social Media. I see the value of both of them, however, I’m going with my personal plan to implement the use of them as it fits. I do have an account with both, however, my focus is on the other 3 as I move forward to take advantage of Google+ and pinterest. Many individuals don’t do anything because their so overwhelmed believing that they have to do them all. Thanks for enlightening us.

    • http://www.memarketingservices.com memarketingservices

      Thanks Robin!

  • http://www.nanacampana.com Nana

    WOW! What a great list of information. :) I really liked that you took the time to talk about Google + because I am barely getting my feet wet with that one!
    BTW, what plugin do you use for incorporating social media on your site? It is so easy to share your post with my people and I would love to do the same… :) Thanks for the awesome post!

    • http://www.memarketingservices.com memarketingservices

      Thanks!! I am glad you enjoyed it! I use Floating Social on my site. I love how it pretty much follows you down the post :)

  • http://www.divorcewomencan.com Leisa Douglas

    Thanks so much Many! I cant wait!

  • http://twitter.com/ly_osorio Liliana Osorio

    Great post, thank you. Just thinking… why do you say it’s best for certain businesses to not get involved with Twitter? Would be great to understand where your thinking comes from here. “If you are a doctor, CPA, attorney or have a professional services business, I would steer clear from Twitter and stick with Facebook and Google+.”

    • http://www.memarketingservices.com/ Mandy Edwards

      I say that because for most, their target audience is not on Twitter. I do have an attorney client who targets that age, so yes, he would benefit from it however my CPA client targets someone different so his market isn’t on there but on LinkedIn. It’s really a case by case basis but in general terms, those types of industries’ target audiences are not on Twitter.

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