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Twitter Is For Right Now – Not Yesterday!

There are many articles that tell you how little time it takes to use social media. Yet, if you’re a relatively new user, this will sound like hogwash! It can take several hours to understand how to use just one social media platform. However, once you’re up and running,  your time spent can be drastically reduced. You’d be amazed at how the pros manage their time using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Blogs, etc. There really is a method to the “spend 20 minutes a day” advice you hear out there. Today’s quick tip is an invaluable lesson I learned several months ago from Warriorpreneur Ann Evanston:

When using Twitter, don’t go backwards in your timeline to get caught up. 

When you open Twitter, depending on which platform you’re using (Hootsuite, iPhone, etc.), it usually opens to the exact time period you last viewed. The problem is that this could be several hours (or days) ago. When I was a newbie, I’d scroll through old tweets to get caught up and it was a complete waste of time! It takes too long, and Twitter is about as live and “real time” as it gets with social media. You are essentially catching up on old news, and if you start reading and retweeting from too many hours (or days) back, you’ll never catch up to the most recent tweets! You’ll miss all the current news, or worse, the conversation will have already ended and you’ll show up loud and late! For the most part, if I’m “behind” in my timeline I scroll forward to tweets within the past 60 minutes or so, UNLESS I’m performing a specific search. This one little tip made a HUGE difference in my understanding and use of Twitter, so I thought I’d share the advice.

Ciao,
Miss Kemya 

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Seize the Tweet Chat Opportunity

I’m writing this post as though you are familiar with Twitter. If you aren’t, take a look my previous blog post “Why Aren’t You Tweeting Yet?” Then come back here and finish reading…

I recently participated in an awesome tweetchat with THE CEO Mamma Network via #theceomamma. Let me tell you, these are some energetic ladies that are wonderful at sharing tips, info, and insight with each other! During the chat I learned several of the participants had never participated in a tweet chat, it was their first time! I’m so used to tweeting that I took the “tweet chat” concept for granted. In keeping with this month’s topic – social media – I thought I’d give a brief overview of a tweet chat.

A tweet chat is a Twitter conversation with a group of people, it might be 10, it could be 300. I like to think of it as a group meeting. Using a designated #hashtag, a person(s) sends out a tweet as an invitation to join the chat, and he/she will include the #hashtag to follow, along with the designated date, time and topic for the chat. When the tweet chat “meeting” begins, you can follow along using the basic Twitter platform, a social media dashboard like HootSuite or TweetDeck, or by using Tweetchat, which is probably the most popular way to follow and join the discussion. If you’re not familiar with the different platforms, post a question as a comment and I’ll give you some pointers.

Tweet chats are a goldmine! Think about it: a tweet chat provides an opportunity for exposure to a group of people who are interested in a particular topic. Can you say “target market, demographic profile“, “networking opportunity? You can participate in a number of ways: you can lurk and observe the discussion, you can tweet a “hello I’m here” to the participants, ask questions, provide answers, learn more on a new subject, get to know the people interested in certain topics, find new people to follow…the list goes on and on. Your objectives for participating will vary; sometimes I lurk, other times I’m in the q&a, but I always find new people to follow. Often times the twitter stream is so rich in content I save the stream so I can go over the info I learned and make notes (which I did for the #theceomamma tweet chat).  So be on the lookout for tweet chats in your field, and when you arrive at the meeting announce yourself, and if you’re ready, join the conversation! Seize the tweet chat opportunity!

Ciao,
Miss Kemya

Why Aren’t You Tweeting Yet?

Many professionals are still apprehensive regarding social media outlets.  I run into so many business owners that simply don’t know how to join the social media conversation, so they stay behind, falling further and further into the abyss with the dinosaurs. For those of you that don’t know how to join the conversation, I’m here to get rid of all the excuses you’ve been using as to why you can’t “get on” social media.  Read on to learn how I joined one of the major social networks: Twitter.

How To Get Started on Twitter For Business Purposes 

Learn the Basics. Go to http://business.twitter.com/ and learn Twitter basics. Just because you don’t know what you’re doing doesn’t mean you have to look like a novice late to the party  – that’s the beauty of the internet isn’t it?

Complete your profile. When choosing a username, make it something easy to understand, and related to your name or company name. Use a real picture as your avatar (aka the picture that shows up next to your username). People want to converse with humans on Twitter; we know logos and robots don’t tweet! Complete your bio as well, otherwise, we (business people) won’t take you seriously.

What to Tweet? You don’t have to “rush” to join the convo. I started by “lurking” – aka reading other people’s tweets and not commenting or retweeting. Then, once I understood the lay of the land – aka “twitterverse” – I started retweeting others’ professional posts. Then, when I got comfortable, I would add a brief comment to the retweet. Then, again while getting more comfortable, I would find original articles and topics to tweet. Over time, I became confident enough to add my personality and personal tweets in the mix. This is my rebuttal to the “I don’t know what to say” excuse!

Who to follow? Since you’ve already learned about hashtags via the Twitter basics, think of a few keywords that relate to your business and search for them as hashtags.  You can also seek out fellow business owners, prospects, and clients that are already using Twitter and follow them.

Consistency Counts. You have to tweet to be seen and build a following. I always recommend starting out with 5 tweets daily for a few weeks, then 10 daily for a few weeks. I tweet Mon-Fri, and rarely during the weekend. Mon-Fri is pretty acceptable for business purposes. This allows you to get the hang of it.  I  know you can spare 20 minutes 3 times a day to read tweets and find interesting posts to retweet or comment on. This is my rebuttal to the “I don’t have time” excuse!

BONUS: Perform searches at http://search.twitter.com/advanced to find tweets based on a myriad of criteria. This method is still elusive for many, so if you’re reading this post you’re ahead of the game! Thank me by commenting!

This is exactly what I did when I got serious about using Twitter, so I know it works.  This formula is simple enough to prevent any excuses. I understand how overwhelming social media can be, and when you hear tips from “experts” with a huge fan base their advice doesn’t seem practical. Been there, done that, moved on, and so should you! Building your following and your level of comfort will take time, but you will get there if you follow my tips. The longer you wait, the more you sink into the abyss. If you get lost or need help, find me on Twitter @MissKemya, leave a comment, or send me an email at kemya [at] phiscomarketing.com. I’m glad to help.

**For those of you already deep in twitterverse, please send this post to your reluctant colleagues and let me know how it works for them. I’ve had this same conversation numerous times to get people started on Twitter.**

Ciao,
Miss Kemya 

5 Tips To Freshen Up Your Business

In the spirit of my do-over Happy New Year, I have spent the past week reflecting on my business – what works, what doesn’t, what needs some tweaking. As any entrepreneur can tell you, there are always outstanding tasks that can easily take control of your day: last-minute meetings, unexpected phone calls, tech nightmares, places to go, blog posts to schedule, etc.

Unfortunately, many biz owners never actually schedule time to work on their own business, always working on client projects or participating in activities that just don’t fall into the productive category. With this in mind, and having to ‘fess up to my own challenges for the first quarter, I figured I’d share my top 5 tips to freshen up your business and get back on track:

Review your networking activities for the quarter. Where did you go, who did you talk to, how did you benefit? Did you walk away with business cards, flyers, miscellaneous notes, souvenirs, etc. that you stuck in a pile to deal with later? Well, later is here, so deal with it! While you’re at it, organize your networking efforts for the next two quarters, then proceed to …

Organize your contacts. Business cards, sticky notes, napkin scribbles, etc. – did you enter them into a practical CRM tool? If not, schedule 1 hour (or 2 if you’re way behind) and enter all your contacts into your CRM tool of choice. Extra tip: put a comment with each contact – where you met, what you talked about, follow-up needed, etc. – you’ll thank me later. Then schedule those follow-ups.

Revisit your immediate target client list. Who do you want as a client? Make a list, research the company, connect with them via social media, and make a plan of action for actually winning each client. Don’t know your targets? Think about your mission, your experience, and your contacts. Which firms can you think of that may fit your set of criteria and you can get access to a decision maker? Don’t be timid, utilize your network! It’s time for some action!

Update your social media profiles. You keep your profiles updated right? Of course you do. However, you still need to spot check to make sure your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Blog, SlideShare, Digg, etc. profiles are CONSISTENT and up to date. Post a new bio, profile pic, or update – then brag about it.

Revisit your business objectives. Are you still on track to meet your goals for the year? If not, you have a decision to make: change your actions or change your goals. If you haven’t defined your objectives… well that’s another post for another day. But you can always call me to discuss.

So there you have it, simple methods you can use to get organized on a quarterly basis, just in case you wake up with the “omg my business is a mess” blues.

I know you have an additional tip or 2 to share, so go ahead and leave a comment. I’d love to hear what works for you. It just might work for the rest of us!

Ciao!
Miss Kemya

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