By now it should be clear to us all that one of the benefits of social media — widespread accessibility — can also be a burden. Anything you post on the internet unless in private spaces, can be viewed by people you may not have intended to be the primary audience. Not only that, but there’s also a degree of permanence to it. Even if you go back and delete posts you might later regret, there’s a chance that someone could have screen-grabbed or shared it. [Read more…]
Social media is a marketing powerhouse, and no matter what platform you want to use, there are benefits all the way around. Put simply, the short answer to “which is better for business?” is that you should be using all three; but for the sake of this article, we’re going to compare Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter in terms of marketing benefits, company growth, and the ability to help brands reach a wider audience. [Read more…]
The freelance writing life is a hustle. Though some writers focus on content work, building a freelance business, many others spend their careers chasing down jobs at an array of different publications. It’s a lot of additional work on top of writing, and if you’re going to make it worthwhile, it’s important to keep your readers connected to your work – no matter where it appears.
So how do you build a loyal readership as a freelance writer? These 4 strategies can keep everyone on the same page, and make your work more appealing to publishers by promising them a pre-formed audience.As a freelance writer, you need a solid following. Here's how to build one. Click To Tweet
While Wednesday is traditionally a low day for workers – who wants to be stuck in the middle? – it doesn’t really have much of an effect on many freelancers, does it? For some, however, weekends are sacred. It is time for family. It is “me time”.
For the latter group, then, Hump Day certainly exists. Since I try to keep the weekends free for things I don’t get to do during the week, I usually experience the blues on Wednesday (even though I end up doing some work on the weekends).
Words don’t come easily. My fingers are so uncoordinated I can’t type without making a mistake every 30 seconds. My mind wanders as if it were a leaf being blown by the wind. [Read more…]
Last week, I shared a meme on Facebook that was a big hit – understandably so. In case you missed it, here is the image again.
It’s funny, sure. But I say it’s all fun and games until your Facebook account gets hacked for real. [Read more…]
So we all know that what we post on social media can kill your chances of landing — or even keeping — a great job. We’ve all been admonished to keep the photos of drunken exploits off Facebook, to lock down our privacy settings to avoid being tagged in unflattering photos, and to be careful about what we say and do online.
As a freelancer, you might think that you’re exempt from those warnings. When you work for yourself, you can do what you want. Think again. Plenty of freelance writers inadvertently torpedo their own careers by the way they communicate and interact online, even if they don’t post photos of themselves doing naked keg stands.
Since social media is so important to building and sustaining a brand, before you post your next pithy status update, make sure you’re not making any of these mistakes. [Read more…]
Editor’s note: This post was written by Aby League, a qualitative researcher and a passionate writer. She is an innovator and technology enthusiast. She has been writing about health, psychology, home improvement and technology. You can see more of her articles on Elite Daily. To know her more, follow @abyleague on Twitter.
Today, blogs and social media platforms are doing wonders for the business community. They allow businesses to promote their brands across large audiences, as well as help them build brand identity and trust among customers. However, for this approach to be successful, business owners and/or freelance writers like you must learn to use these two tools in a way that they’ll effectively complement each other.
Image courtesy of Christian Schnettelker via Flickr, Creative Commons
Social media holds great potential in driving readers to your blog.
Consequently, a blog can support your social media account by leveraging credibility and substance. However, you must be careful to strike a balance between the two. If you’re just starting to build your business’s web presence, you must first learn the basics of blogging and social media: what they do, what they’re used for, and how they can help move your business forward.
See, blogging and social media work differently.
A blog is ideally used to share a business’s expertise and knowledge on industry-relevant matters. It provides a conversational approach in discussing various topics that do not just promote the your brand, but also genuinely provide interesting information that readers will truly benefit from. On the other hand, social media platforms allow you to reach a larger community—since everyone these days are either logged in on Facebook, scrolling through Twitter and Instagram, or looking for creative ideas on Pinterest.
Blogs and social media serve two different purposes—but when used together, they provide a great chance of building a powerful and influential web presence for virtually any type of business. Whether you want to drive a steady stream of readers to your blog, or make people want to share your blog content on Facebook and Twitter, here is how you can use blogging and social media to your business advantage:
- Use social media to grow your blog’s traffic. A blog entry will not be able to promote itself unless it is shared across multiple social media platforms. However, building blog audience through social media can be quite tricky. Keep in mind that the key to grabbing attention on social media is to create short but interesting content. When sharing a certain blog entry on social media, put effort in making fun and creative captions or visuals that would entice social media users to click the link to your blog. How a social snippet looks on social media is almost as important as what it says.
- Make your blog entries “shareable” across all social media platforms. It’s one thing to share your own content on social media, but it’s another to be able to make it easy for readers to share your content on their social media accounts. It’s the online equivalent of advertising through word of mouth. Include share buttons on your blog so that readers can easily share or recommend your brand through your interesting blog post. Also, make sure that your buttons are up-to-date, as social media icons tend to change really fast.
- Take advantage of Analytics. If you’re not familiar with Google Analytics, you are probably missing out. This tool allows you to monitor the activity on your website or blog by counting how many people are actually clicking your outbound social media links. If the numbers are low, you can re-examine if your social media buttons are in a strategic position on the page, or if you’re writing about the wrong things on your blog. Either way, let the numbers help you improve what needs to be improved. You can also use Avinash Kaushik’s social media metrics as a guide to gauge your social media performance.
- Write about things that matter to your readers. You can share your blog posts on social media all you want—you can even put social media buttons all over your page, but readers won’t share your content if it gives them nothing worth sharing. As such, write about topics that are socially relevant. Blogging must be creative and informative, and not aggressive, hard sell writing. Remember that you want to educate and empower your readers so that they keep coming back for more.
Image courtesy of Robb Sutton via Flickr, Creative Commons
- Showcase your social media content on your blog. While blogs do allow more depth than social media channels, social media can still showcase unique content that doesn’t need a blog entry of its own. If people engage with such posts on social media, consider featuring these posts on your blog. For instance, if your Tweets get a lot of Retweets and replies, it would be a great idea to integrate your Twitter feed directly on your site.
You’re a good writer, and you know it. If given a keyboard and Internet connection, you could craft ingenious articles in no time, but the only problem is –you’re not getting the work you need. Sitting in front of your computer all day, twiddling your thumbs, checking Facebook, and getting lost on the ‘top 10s’ of Buzzfeed isn’t going to pay the bills! You need to get your name out there, and start standing out.
It is easy to doubt whether or not it’s possible to make it as a freelance writer, but the fact of the matter is that it can be done. In fact, freelance writers are more in demand today than they have ever been, because of social media networks. There has never been a better time to become a writer, and if you’ve got the skills, then all you need to do is get your name out there and start marketing your services. [Read more…]
Marketers break grammar rules with catchy slogans and tag lines all the time. Unfortunately, those creative liberties have a nasty habit of bleeding into social media posts and updates – a place they simply don’t belong.
Spelling and grammar errors in social media posts affect your credibility, making it look like you don’t know what you’re talking about. That’s the last thing a business should portray to potential customers – or a writer to readers.
If you use social media to advertise your product or services, we encourage you to take a quick read of the grammar points highlighted below before posting your next status update:
Time is a Limited Resource
Everyone is vying for attention in social media, and posts that take extra time to read are likely to turn people away. Make your post direct and as easy to read as possible. Things like typos and grammar mistakes make the reader pause to figure out what you’re trying to say. There’s no time for a pause when it comes to social media – users will simply move on to another topic.
Our friends at Copyblogger have put together a resource for all of the common grammar mistakes like substituting “your” when you really mean “you’re”. Simple mistakes like these make social media profiles look as though they were managed by teenagers who failed to pay attention in English class.
To prevent this from happening, make it a point to proofread all of your social media posts before you hit publish. Proofreading only takes a few seconds and will help you catch many of your errors.
Tip: To make the most of your proofreading efforts, prepare your social media post and then get up and walk away from your computer. Do something completely unrelated to the task at hand. After a five minute break, return to your post with a fresh set of eyes.
Watch Abbreviations and Acronyms
Not everyone understands what you’re saying when you abbreviate. Keep your audience in mind before going crazy with abbreviations and acronyms. While industry-specific jargon has its place it’s best to keep it out of social media. Peppering status updates with abbreviations and acronyms unknown to the lay person will only serve to alienate potential customers/readers.
Start Tweets with Words, Not Periods
It’s become a common practice on Twitter to start tweets with periods, but what many marketers miss is this is a signal that the tweet will be bragging or a sarcastic complaint.
The only time you should start Tweets with period is when you want to open with someone’s handle and you want everyone to see it. If you don’t place a period in front of the Twitter handle at the beginning of a message, Twitter will treat it like a reply. An easy workaround for this is to reword the tweet so it doesn’t start with someone’s handle.
Make Important Items Stand Out
In social media, you have to rely on the use of punctuation and capitalization to make certain words or phrases stand out. It’s much easier to read a hashtag with multiple words if you capitalize the first letter of each word. Would you rather read “#workathome” or “#WorkAtHome?” Make it easy on your readers to understand your message whenever possible.
Tip: Remain consistent in how you set off your links. Don’t use colons, periods, and em dashes interchangeably. Pick one method and stick to it.
LOL, gr8, OMG, and thx are fine when used in context with friends and family, but on a public social media site, slang and shorthand should be avoided. You never know who will pick up your tweet and retweet or share your status update with their network. Keep your social media posts professional.
Read It Aloud
Our final tip is to simply read your post aloud before publishing it. It’s easy to most grammar errors when you hear the message versus reading it.
What grammar errors bug you the most on social media?
Sarah is the Content Manager and a Writer at Virtual Vocations.com, the one-stop shop for telecommuters looking for legit telecommute online jobs. With several years of marketing and writing experience, Sarah also has a background working in English. Follow Virtual Vocations on Facebook and Twitter.
Blogging offers writers great rewards. We get to share our words with others. We educate and entertain. If we’re really lucky, our blogs generate income or interest from book agents. To do any of this, however, you need readers, and in the early days of any blog, readers are hard to come by. [Read more…]