Author Archives: Samkit Shah

Top 7 Advantage of using a Social Media Aggregator

social media aggregator

Every minute of the day Instagram users share 3,600 new photos, Twitter users send over 100,000 tweets, and Facebook users share 684,478 pieces of content. If these statistics aren’t intimidating enough, prepare to be blown away by this Mashable infographic. Numbers like these just go to show that we are operating in the era of big data. This is why more and more businesses and organizations are taking advantage of social media aggregators. Fortunately, connecting all of your social media accounts has never been easier, and not to mention cheaper with innovative companies like ContentPlum paving the way. If you’re still not convinced that you need a social media aggregator to stay ahead of the game, these seven advantages will show you otherwise.

Top 7 Advantages of using a Social Media Aggregator

1 – Save Time and Money

Any social media product or service that adds value to your business will come at a price. At a glance this seems like a disadvantage, but the reality is that a social aggregation tool will save you time and money by making other areas of your social marketing more efficient! Consider how much time is spent searching for content, analyzing the data and coming up with engaging ways to utilize and showcase this information. Now consider that all of this time-consuming labour can be accomplished within a single service, and in a fraction of that time. That means social media aggregation tools like ContentPlum will free up your resources so that they can be reallocated to other areas of your business. With plans as cost-efficient as $20 per month, you’ll wish you took advantage of ContentPlum’s services sooner!

2 – Effective Community Engagement Strategy

These days social media aggregation tools are essential to any community engagement strategy, regardless of what industry you’re in. One brand that is doing this successfully is The Stylist LA. Using ContentPlum’s Instagram widget to aggregate posts, they encourage customers to use their dedicated hashtags (#IHeartStylistLA, #StylistLA, #TheStylistLA) so that the posts will be featured in their gallery on their website. This allows The Stylist LA to create buzz, drive more traffic and connect with customers. For more on how to increase engagement with your online community using a social media aggregator, read this informative article.

3 – Quality Content Curation

When deciding which social aggregation tool to utilize, do not underestimate the importance of content curation. It’s not enough for a social media aggregator to be able to connect all social media in one platform. It needs to be able to curate all this information efficiently and authentically. The quality of the content being surfaced is a reflection of your brand so it’s imperative to moderate information and avoid inappropriate content. ContentPlum easily allows you to surface the most relevant content, curate and share the best of that content with just one click. This empowers businesses to reach target markets more effectively.

4 – Turn a Browser into a Customer

‘From spontaneous expressions of joy over your service to photographic evidence of your product being used, these posts can turn a browser into a customer.’ – Entrepreneur.com

bObsweep uses ContentPlum’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram widgets to display social content from their feeds. They ask customers to use the hashtag #bobsweep to share product reviews, which builds brand trust. So when potential customers are browsing the bObsweep webpage, they are more likely to buy after seeing the powerful social media mosaic of testimonials from happy bObsweep customers.

5 – Increase Internal Engagement

Since social media networks are very public and transparent, we sometimes fail to consider the internal advantages of social media aggregation. Having a station in your office that captures and displays real-time social media content about your business is an effective way to keep your employees connected with what people are saying about your brand. And because this social media command centre is only monitored internally, you can capture the good, the bad and the ugly. If you’re employees are seeing positive sentiment around your company being shared, it makes them feel better about what they are doing. If they see growing negative sentiment, it can inspire them to do something about it.

6 – Monitor the Competition

Most businesses that take advantage of a social media aggregator use it to build up their own brand. But more companies are thinking outside the box and using these tools and services to monitor their competition. By capturing what is being shared by their audiences on social, you can see what’s resonating well with audiences and make it your own. In this digital age, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. You can also see what is not working well for audiences and avoid making the same mistakes as your competitors – turn their failure into your success!

7 – Stay Ahead of the Trend

A social media aggregator enables you to have your finger on the pulse when it comes to what’s trending in your industry. Monitoring popular hashtags related to your business will not only surface what content is going viral, but also ensure you don’t miss anything! It may also help you identify key influencers in your industry so that you can engage with them. You’ll be surprised to find information and data that you never knew existed. Make sure to take advantage of tools like ContentPlum that make it effortless to quickly pull relevant material from all corners of the internet. For more on content aggregation strategies, read this post.

Ready. Get Set. Aggregate!

Now that you understand the advantages of using a social media aggregator, the next question is which one? A great starting point is easy-to-use, cost-effective social media aggregation widgets that can save you time and money, engage your community, curate quality content, and turn a web-browser prospect into a paying customer.  This article has touched on only two of ContentPlum’s many successful case studies, and these numbers are growing. But to see for yourself how ContentPlum can bring your social marketing strategy to the next level, sign up for free!

Increasing community engagement for business growth

community engagement

Any business that’s serious about success, must be serious about their social media strategy. Whether you’re a major corporate brand or a small business owner, one of the most common challenges when navigating social media is how to increase your community engagement. But why does it matter whether or not they are engaged? Isn’t having an online community enough? If you’re asking these type of questions, you’re not taking community management seriously enough. An effective community engagement strategy is your biggest asset. An ineffective engagement strategy will be your biggest missed opportunity, and in some cases, a threat to your business! Community engagement is the new marketing.

There is no fast-and-easy solution to increasing engagement with your online community, but that doesn’t mean it has to be difficult. Developing a strategy to take advantage of the huge volume of online discussion about your brand is a starting point that will guarantee success!

Community Engagement & Building

As said by Jordan Kretchmer, CEO of Livefyre.com, ‘Socially shared content will hold more weight in the minds of consumers.’ Think of social media sharing as a referral system; and as any salesperson will confirm, referrals tend to generate business opportunities. When customers share positive-sentiments about your brand with their networks on social media, they are signalling a vote of confidence in your business. It is essential to encourage this kind of sharing.

There are different methods to encourage audiences to engage with your brand. One way is to acknowledge all positive tweets that mention your brand or a hashtag related to your business. People respond well to this as it makes your brand feel more human and approachable. It shows that you are listening to what the community has to say, and people are more likely to engage with you when it feels like a two-way conversation.

Another sure-fire way to increase community engagement is by gamification. Social media contests, loyalty campaigns, brand ambassador programs, are all designed to create buzz about your business by taking advantage of user generated content. Coming up with creative and exciting opportunities for people to connect with your brand is an ongoing task but guarantees fresh, organic and authentic user generated content. If leveraged properly, this content will build trust for the brand.

A recent example of this was the Google Developer Conference in which they had a Twitter wall for attendees to enjoy, and remote audiences to feel connected with the event. This ContentPlum widget was a ‘social media hub’ that captured tweets using the conference hashtags. BobSweep increased community engagement by asking customers to use the hashtag #bobsweep and share product stories and reviews. The company uses ContentPlum’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram widgets to display social content from their feeds. This allows potential customers to interact with all the social media posts maintained by the brand without requiring them to jump from site to site, also increasing “time on site” metrics. Both of these brands were not only successful in nurturing positive engagement, but also in utilizing the right widgets to aggregate and showcase their community.

Social Media Content Aggregation

Social content aggregation collects specific content from one or more social networks (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) into a unified presentation. Various aggregation services provide tools or widgets to allow users to consolidate messages, search across multiple social networking sites, read RSS feeds for multiple networks, provide “livestreams”, etc. ContentPlum  helps businesses improve engagement with their brands with widgets that aggregate social streams, which can then be embedded into an existing website or social media hub. These days a community engagement strategy requires the adoption of content aggregation tools in order to amplify their voice.

Content Quality Through Moderation

As more and more demographics engage in social media, the volume of user generated content is overwhelming. Facebook posts get over half their reach within the first 30 minutes, and on Twitter this figure is even greater. With numbers like these, social analytics are becoming increasingly crucial to understanding how online communities are behaving. It also means that there is a lot more attention that needs to be given to content moderation. Most brands will have some degree of negative sentiment with certain demographics. An effective community engagement strategy must have a moderation system in place. It can go a long way in protecting a brand’s online community.

Increasing engagement with your online community involves showing love to our audience. Whether it’s liking a tweet or creating a contest to reward only the most loyal fans, show them that you appreciate their brand affinity. Once you’re successfully encouraging brand discussion, make sure you use the right tools and services to aggregate content in a powerful and meaningful way. Lastly, make sure content moderation is built into your engagement strategy to protect your brand.

Promote an event successfully using user generated content

promote an event

To promote an event successfully using user generated content calls for diligent efforts. Due to the continual rise of social media and Google’s changing algorithmic programs, quality content plays a significant role for every company aiming to establish a long-lasting web presence. Undisputed, unique and meaning-focused content requires time and hard work. Plus, it can be expensive, especially when you are outsourcing it.

Thankfully, there are cost-effective ways that lay on user-generated content principles to help companies promote an exceptional content the entertaining way. It is called event promotion via social media. From giveaways to contests, there is a wide array of topics an event can cover. To reap the rewards as soon as possible, you have to design and run that event carefully. One of the keys to a successful event promotion is to be persuasive enough to engage as more participants as possible to your event. Sometimes this can be a real challenge. Here are some guidelines on how to promote an event and gain free content to your website.

By and large, the most popular social networking sites today remain as follows:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • YouTube
  • Instagram
  • Foursquare

To promote an event, ContentPlum’s focus stays on these networking sites. They are open channels for communication with people worldwide who are interested in the particular niche. This is a huge benefit and everyone has to use it, by all means.

Tips to Promote an Event successfully using User Generate Content

Integrate all social media profiles

Each of your social media channels can contribute a lot for promoting an event in a unique way. The key is to make goals and plan ahead. The goals for your event can vary. Nonetheless, it is better when you have data that measure in actual numbers. Thus, you’d valuate the results clearly.

What kind of data to take into account?

  • new email subscribers
  • new Facebook page likes
  • Retweets
  • shared links
  • number of unique visitors
  • sales 

Define the goals

Let the sales and money-making not be the main goal. The event has to focus on building a strong relationship with the users. Once you have their attention, they are more likely to become loyal to your brand.  You can leverage a lot from establishing a large online presence and growing a fan base.

Create a unified hashtag name that suits your event

As you attempt to promote an event on social media, you have to come up with a proper and meaningful hashtag name. Hashtags are vital when promoting an event, especially on Twitter and Instagram. Take time while developing the hashtag. Don’t go for long hashtags. The shorter is easy to remember. More importantly, your hashtag has to be original and unified. Make a list of suggestions. Then pick the one that sounds best. Upload the promotional materials on your social media profiles and put the hashtag on. Bear in mind, you can keep using the hashtag after the event because, by rule, hashtags are a great way to promote a brand. ContentPlum can do this for you with fulfilling user experience in mind.

Promote event on Facebook

On average, more than 450 million people visit Facebook daily, which makes it a beneficial place when it comes to promote an event. The first step is to create a Facebook page with your brand name on. Don’t rely on your personal Facebook profile. Pages allow users to Like them and follow new updates. Plus, they are significantly more visible. Announce the event’s topic. Use it to tell your brand’s story. It is much easier to spread the word on Facebook and invite as many people to join as you want. In order to engage much interest, pick a catchy and descriptive name for the event. Be sure to use powerful images to leave the users impressed and excited. ContentPlum focuses on the different ways the event would impact the target audience. The main goal is building a community of people who support your cause.

Promote an event on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is another awesome social place where you can find supporters who may not be that active on Facebook or Twitter. To promote your event, you can follow the same principles as on Facebook. Your focus should be mainly on the impact. Be concrete and honest as you tell the story of your event. Also, it’s important to choose the industry that suits the event and set the right labels.

Upload Behind-the-scenes photos and videos

In most cases, visual content impacts users better than written. Just remember how much viewers enjoy watching the bloopers at the end of a movie. You can re-create something similar with your event to boost engagement. For this, use Instagram and YouTube.  Share pictures of you and your team during the preparation process. Tell funny stories about mistakes, last-minute changes, what problems you have faced and how you solved them, show images where members of the tam express genuine reactions of joy or surprise. Choose the most influential images and videos. When users feel close to you, they are likely to support your cause or brand. Don’t forget to include hashtags on the photos and videos. If you need examples, make sure to check the Polo on the Beach competition on Instagram #POTB14 accomplished by ContentPlum.

Build a social wall

Real-time social buzz is the best way to enhance user excitement over the event. Let anyone interested join the ongoing conversation feed and leave a comment. Enable the attendees to be part of the buzz as well.  If you don’t have a clear idea, leave ContentPlum to do the heavy lifting for you.   We will use the right tools to monitor the posts and photos being displayed on tablets and television screens. Whatever the event is, wedding, sports game, concert, we will make sure that the most inspiring posts stay on top of the feed and invite more users to share the event virtually.  Needless to say, by creating buzz, you inspire visibility. Naturally, when more participants join your event, it gets popular. There’s success.

Announce the event through your email signature

This is a ridiculously easy thing to do. Just think for a moment how many emails you send every single day. Now think of them as a good opportunity to enhance the awareness of your event. Next time, as you finish writing an email, before you click on the “send” button, make sure to add a hyperlink (perhaps an image or graphic) of the event to your signature.

Conclusion

When it comes to promoting an event, social media along with powerful user generated content combined with a social wall entity like ContentPlum become the most powerful tools. If you want to achieve the desired marketing goals, you can’t afford not using it. Not in the today’s world, where most viral events take place on the Internet.

Internal office communication – 8 essential strategies

internal office communication

Internal office communication is a key to increasing business growth. Nowadays, the vast of the organizations tend to forget that it’s the internal audience – the employees – who are the most valuable asset in the business. That’s why it is important they communicate and collaborate freely among each other and share news, good or bad. The digital revolution brought about the rise of social media tools. They opened many doors for organizations to develop and apply effective strategies, and get the best of the communication course. To put it simply, the key element in every successful internal communication strategy is, to give the employees a voice. Now, with the many benefits of modern technology companies are ready and willing to give that voice in various creative ways to enhance employee engagement in the company’s mission.

The benefits of developing and applying a strong internal office communication strategy -

  • Employees will start seeing things on a larger scale. They will gain a good understanding of their place in the organization.  Once they feel valued, they will become more committed to the job.
  • Good internal communication will add meaning to the team work. As a result, they will be eager to contribute more to the organization.
  • Communication is not only about establishing a leadership anymore. It is about applying the right strategy to motivate, inspire and engage employees. Understanding the needs of the staff defines effective leadership.
  • Through effective internal communication organizations achieve trust and credibility. As a result, they attract more competent, committed and loyal workforce.
  • Organizations who manage to achieve better internal communication still remain a rare breed these days.
  • Through effective communication strategies, organizations enable employees to do their jobs better. They create a productive work environment that instills a mutual sense of purpose and inspires growth. 

8 Essential Strategies for Internal Office Communication

Bring in a company chat software

Thankfully, the growing interest in internal office communication leads to the invention of a number of such software programs that make the process simple and hassle-free. Let simplicity be the guiding principle behind every practice you use. Regardless of the size of the group you refer to, simplicity always remains crucial for the successful outcome. Open source applications for team chat can do much good in a collaborative environment. Pick those tools that work best depending on the size of your team and company mission. Among the best internal office communication software programs are  IRC, Let’s Chat, Mattermost, Rocketchat,  HipChat, Jabber/XMPP, Slack, Yammer, etc.

Take advantage of cloud technology

Cloud technology such as Dropbox, iCloud and Google Drive will serve your team of employees really good. Introduce one online platform for email communication and document exchange. This is the perfect way to store important files and data in a safe place and prevent further problems due to system failure, computer problems or hacker attacks.

Work can be fun

Work doesn’t have to be all serious anymore. It can be entertaining as well. It’s healthy for the team to have some fun from time to time. Craft hilarious posts on social media, post photos from team building events. You’ll be surprised how much this empowers the overall motivation and the sense of being part of a special community.  The vast majority of the milennials truly believe that working and having fun must come together.

Open door policy

This policy should go beyond the physical border. It’s vital that the staff members, in a case of need, must be able to get in touch with managers of all levels in a painless way. Lines of communication must remain open all the time. Also, the team members mustn’t be afraid to talk to someone from the upper management. That’s the best way to keep the company healthy from inside. “Open floor” type of managers usually sit down with staff and listen to what they have to say. Such meetings don’t necessarily take place at the office. They can happen in a cafeteria nearby or someplace else where the employee is comfortable.

Building trust through transparency

Transparency has a crucial part in internal office communication. In fact, this is the key element to building credibility and trust. It also sets the scene to an open dialogue. If you keep your team in the dark and they sense it quite well, they won’t be willing to share ideas, suggest solutions or feel engaged in the company’s prosperity at all. Those are the signs telling the internal communication is broken. You can fix it through applying the transparency approach. In reality, the team can’t have full access to information of all kinds but, in the name of harmonious and honest relations, it is recommendable to shed some light on the matters of their concern.

Don’t underestimate the power of visual content

Visual internal office communication software brings many benefits. This is a good way to announce new meetings, company events, vacant positions and newcomers as well as inform the staff about niche-related news, upcoming events, seminars, rising trends, etc. Digital display software, like ContentPlum, is a great way to serve inspiration to your team of professionals and boost their motivation. Visual content is the best channel to illustrate goals and remind of former accomplishments for motivational purposes.

Social media keeps the team informed on market trends and news

It’s essential that team members are aware of what is happening in the market niche. You never know what piece of information may inspire a breakthrough idea or valuable solution to an ongoing issue. Encourage the team to share news and discuss market trends and famous strategies with each other. This is an excellent technique to make your team feel special contributing to the company good.

The golden mean in using social media

Still, many companies block the access to internal office communication software purely from a productivity perspective. That’s old-fashioned now. Have more faith in your employees. They sure have in mind not to cross the line between “personal and business”. Instead of taking away the pleasure of social media, let them have it, but be sure to set some rules first. This is a great way to gain credibility and respect because today’s employees are more engaged in social media than ever. Look for the desirable middle between two extremes. Allow them to read and share industry-related content – news, articles, charts, infographics, tweets, interviews with experts in the industry, etc. It will make them happy, and keep their focus clear and on the work.

The role of internal communication in today’s world

Needless to say, successful internal office communication does not come down to automatically produce informative messages saying what people want to hear. Communication means understanding the listener’s needs and desires. You can do that simply by listening to what he says and refers to. How he feels about culture, moral values, goals, ideas; in what way he relates to the world. There are so many factors that might influence the company’s approach –geography, demographics, company objectives, culture, brand, etc. Whereas some companies can afford to apply a large array of social tools and strategies, others achieve just enough success by using one or two, for example a Facebook group or a simple blog where every employee is free to express their thoughts.

Conclusion

Internal office communication sends the right message across. Through applying the right strategies, in the end, employees gain vital awareness of the company’s mission and their role in the whole process. The effective internal communication informs, inspires, motivates and engages employees to work hard as a team and help the organization move forward and succeed.

7 Ways to Use Social Media for Educational Purposes

social media for educational purposes

As an information and communication technology, social media for educational purposes engages students to learn new things and achieve goals.  They join school social media sites to:

  • find friends
  • build fruitful connections
  • exchange views, knowledge and experiences
  • assist each other 

Such exchange is highly beneficial for enhancing the peer communication among learners in various e-learning scenarios. Today’s students can easily be defined as digital natives and social network aficionados. Therefore, their passion for connecting via school social media lays the foundations of a new technology-inspired trend in education. Provided that Internet is a huge open source of learning materials, social media for educational purposes plays even more significant role for spreading this information to wider audiences.

Student-driven education

Appropriate technology enhances the way learners absorb information, share hints, assess each other’s ideas and solutions, and give feedback in the learning process. Therefore, social media for educational purposes can serve as a useful way to help peer education reach higher standards from both students’ and teachers’ perspective.

Open Knowledge

A teacher can’t be replaced by a machine. But why separate them when they can act together. Social media for education proved efficient way to engage students in a modern learning environment. The more schools and universities use it, the better results they could get. For the past years, the concept of open knowledge grew highly popular. Internet and social media for university helped teaching go beyond the physical barriers and reach greater amount of learning enthusiasts.

Some things are better when shared (Building close-knit online communities)

Building a school brand is a good way to:

  • Share knowledge with the world
  • Find talented teachers
  • Advertise education opportunities
  • Send your message across
  • Promote stronger relationship with parents and community members 

Education facilities now are able to build thriving online communities via top-rated social media channels. Here are a few of the most efficient ways schools and universities can boost their brand awareness using social media for educational purposes.

Social Media For Educational Purposes

1. School/University Website.

The best way to advertise the education opportunities your school or university has to offer is to launch a website so that many people – students, parents and teachers – would know about this place. Through a website, a school or university can tell the world its story and emphasize on the educational objectives established. The more information Internet users are able to find on the website, the better engaged they will grow. However, it’s important that the information is divided into pieces and presented in a user-friendly way. Brochure-type websites, for example, are no longer of anybody’s interest. To make good impression, build your school/university website as attractive as possible. It needs to be accessible on mobile as well as desktops; update the information regularly and add social media buttons to direct to active social media pages. 

2. Facebook and Twitter.

As you post articles on subjects that students are learning, gradually build a Facebook community by sharing links to learners-oriented articles. Post information regarding online contests, events, science projects, and everything under the sun that would draw students’ attention into learning. Inviting students to leave feedback is a useful way to make them feel part of this community. Likewise, Twitter is another good virtual place to communicate with the world and nurture valuable online connections.  

3. Google Hangouts.

This web-based school social media tool empowered by Google has proved immensely effective for helping people communicate easily through a video connection. One Hangout virtual room can gather up to ten participants. From elementary to high school, this method of virtual connecting applies for all levels of learning.  Establish a Math learners’ club and gather Math students to exchange views and knowledge.

4. Video Sharing.

Video sharing platforms such as YouTube and Vimeo are equally popular as Facebook and Twitter. In fact, it’s the process of creating a video for educational purposes that inspires students to research, organize, assess, learn, create and revise. The thought of sharing their final work with the online world and anticipating eagerly the feedback boosts the learning experience even more.

5. Cloud-Based Platforms.

File-sharing apps like Google Drive and Dropbox enhance team work. These sites allow school and college students to gather in small groups and work together on various assignments in the virtual classroom. 

6. SlideShare.

This is another learner-oriented platform designed to facilitate students’ attempts to search and create great work for school or university projects. Its many useful features allow to add or edit information and share it with the world, in the end. It’s like creating and sharing on YouTube, only with presentations.

7. Blogging.

Of all social media for education tools, blogging is the one that school and university websites benefit the most. Articles and blog posts straighten the social community by keeping students connected longer. Posting questions to engage discussions on a weekly basis is a good way to excite students. Although blog posts can reflect on any subject, it’s important to keep the focus on the main goal – stimulating the learning process. 

Windows of education opportunity

Educational inequality is an important issue for the modern society. Apparently, providing all citizens with equal access to educational resources isn’t easy to achieve in practice. Thanks to technology advancement, schools and universities received a nudge in the right directing. Moreover, Internet and social media brought about an information explosion that significantly raised the scope of school and university education for good. For the past years, many prestigious schools and universities have made a ground-breaking step towards resolving a major issue of education. Through launching training courses available worldwide via online communities, they gave students from poor countries the opportunity to reach good teachers and enjoy valuable learning experience.

What are your thoughts on using social media for educational purposes? Let us hear your opinion in the comments section below.