Social Media Marketing 101

Social Media Marketing Guide

Social Media Marketing Guide for Businesses

Social media has seen tremendous growth over the last ten years, and there is no question it has transformed from an interesting way to connect people around the globe to a necessity.  The internet has revolutionized the way we do business, becoming the ultimate marketing tool for every industry. From local shops to global corporations, business are now using social media as a major part of their marketing efforts.  But how can your business really benefit?  While the main goal of any business’s online strategy should be to increase brand awareness and ultimately gain customers, Social Media specifically allows businesses to promote and extend their brand, engage and  interact with its customer base, promote and test products and services, as well as broadcast news, updates, or events. Not to mention all the valuable insights and demographic data that gets reported which can be analyzed in real time to make key business decisions.   Of course in order to generate insightful data, businesses needs to understand how to use Social Media to begin with. Social Media is actually made up of various sites and platforms similar to a toolbox: Analogous to building a house, understanding which tool to use makes a difference in trying to build your business. Each platform has some unique differences: For example some sites like Twitter and Instagram really take advantage of hashtags, but Twitter is limited to only 140 characters while Instagram doesn’t allow hyperlinks. Facebook has no limit and allows all of the above. So does Google+. So what’s the difference?  For more information and further understanding on the major social platforms (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+), recommend reading the Social Media Marketing Guide for Small Businesses.   After downloading the guide and getting your account successfully set up, you may still have questions like:
  • How do I generate more “likes”?
  • How many  likes do I need?
  • What should I be posting?
  • How often should I post?
  • What should my cover art look like?
  • Why all the hashtags?
  • What does a “#” even do?
  • Can I advertise on social media?
  • Should I advertise and what should my budget be?
  The good news is we offer professional, comprehensive social media services. Our experienced, dedicated social media team can handle every aspect of Social Media, starting with together a social media strategy that works for you and your business. Please visit our social media page for more information or contact us today!

What is Google’s ‘Possum’ algorithm update and why is it so important?

Google’s Possum Update
“Possum” is a local Google update which has major implications on local businesses.
Google’s latest algorithm update, referred to as “Possum” (Yes, another animal with the letter P) is a change to local search, with seemingly positive results for local businesses and for users. The update has put a lot more emphasis on the user’s location, which means users are getting more accurate results. Google’s filters for local search and organic search are evolving and part of this change means the two filters are now working more independently from one another. The update, which took place on September 1st, hasn’t fully stabilized yet, which would indicate Google is still running tests. At least for the near future we won’t know the extent to which Possum will impact rankings and the nature of search. Basically, the changes are as follows:
  • Businesses that are not in the center of the city got a boost: For a long time it was important that you had an address near the center of the city, now that seems to have loosened up a bit.
  • Filtering of local results that share the same address: If you share an office with other people, you may be subject to filtering. This may also be a way to prevent false local business verifications.
  • Searcher location / IP is more important (Results Customization): Different results are being served up based on locations. If you’re tracking your rankings in any kind of rank tracker, you’ll want to use the localized feature.
  • Long tails provide more variation in results: Different results are being served up for variations of keywords, city and state combos. This may also just be shuffling of the serps, but it’s a good idea to have all these variations in your link building and on your site.
  • Local and organic became more disconnected: Google seems to be going back and forth on this. We’ve seen previous updates where if you rank well organically, you would rank well locally in maps, but with this update it seems to regress a little bit back.
For more information, please refer to the extensive article about the Possum Update. For services or more information on SEO, please Contact Us.

Google Updates Penguin now in real-time within Core Search Algorithm.

Google Penguin Update
After nearly two years, Google’s Penguin algorithm has finally been updated (again). It’s the fourth major release, making this Penguin 4.0. It’s also the last release, as it is now processed in real-time.

What Is The Google Penguin Update?

Google originally launched the Penguin Update in April 2012 to better catch sites deemed to be spamming its search results, in particular those doing so by buying links or obtaining them through link networks designed primarily to boost Google rankings. However, since it was only updated periodically, those sites would remain penalized even if they improved and removed spam content until the next time the filter ran, which could take months! The last update took pace on October 17, 2014. Any site identified by Penguin has had to wait nearly two years to “be free.” Now, we are able to see improvements in real time (as Google re-crawls your links and re-evaluates).  Another major improvement is certain pages on your site can be flagged and penalized, as opposed to your entire site.   According to Google in their announcement on Webmaster Central Blog:
Penguin is now more granular. Penguin now devalues spam by adjusting ranking based on spam signals, rather than affecting ranking of the whole site. 

What to do if you were affected

If you were hit by this update or you have seen massive fluctuations, it may not be the end of the world for your site’s rankings.
  • First off, with any update there’s going to be lots of fluctuations – Google is still rolling out this update so it’s not over yet. We’ve seen some cases of big drops, only to see a total recovery in an overnight fashion. The actual ‘full-release’ will probably take some time.
  • Second, if you do have over optimized anchor text, then it should be even faster to see a recovery after you clean up lower quality links and naturalize your anchor text profile. Understnad it’s important to continue to keep your link building natural. Don’t be afraid to under-optimize.
You can access the full article here: 

Got 99+ Problems, Social Media should not be one!

Running a business, of any size, has many challenges and hurdles.  If not careful, they can quickly get out of hand requiring lots of time, increasing stress and keeping you from actually running your business. Enter the world of Social Media–which by design can be time consuming. Without a doubt Social Media has transformed our lives, is here to stay, is ever changing, and if you want to stay in business, better have a social media strategy that will reach and grow your target audience. If not having time is an issue, than hiring an agency to manage your social media marketing like Vision Web makes perfect sense. Please feel free to contact us to learn more about our social media services. Still not convinced your business could benefit from social media marketing? Check out this infographic of fascinating social media facts and stats (over 100) from Search Engine Journal. The infographic provides a snapshot of active social media users on all the major social media networks: Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, GooglePlus, Snapchat, Tumblr, Pinterest and LinkedIn.  Social Media Facts and Stats [Infographic]

Share Some Ideas

Do You Have a Tip or an Idea for a Story? Tell Us About It.
Submit Article