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7 Ways You Should Be Using LinkedIn’s Advanced Search

7 Ways You Should Be Using LinkedIn’s Advanced Search
3Aug

Most social media users only scratch the surface when it comes to navigating their favorite sites. In reality, there are plenty of secret and not-so-secret ways to use these sites effectively. On LinkedIn, for example, the advanced search feature makes it easy to narrow down your list of potentially valuable contacts. So what should you search for?

Well, it depends on what you are after.  Let me explain the different basic search categories that you can choose to search with:

  1. All: quite simply, this searches all search criteria (People, Jobs, Companies, Groups, Updates, and Inbox). This is the broadest search and many times can turn up mostly jobs on the first few pages. If you want to dive deeper into this search, you can use the left column which will give you more advanced criteria to refine your search such as Relationship, Company, Location, Date Posted, Salary, Job Function, Industry, and Experience Level.
  2. People: this searches everyone on LinkedIn and is the most powerful search if you are prospecting or looking for specific people to link up with. This also comes with more advanced options such as Relationship, Location, Current company, Industry, Past Company, School, Profile Language, Groups, Years of Experience, Function, Seniority Level, Interested In, Company Size, Fortune, and When Joined. If you click on “Advanced” right under the word “Search” near the top left corner of the page—all of these options will open up in a more easy-to-use box.
  3. Jobs: this category will enable you to search all of the available vacancies that are posted on LinkedIn by companies and recruiters. It will give you the option of refining your search in many ways. Refining your search in this category is very important, as there are a plethora of jobs posted on LinkedIn, so if you are job searching you want to be as exact as you can. The extra search refining options are Keywords, Company, Title, Location, Country, Postal Code, Relationship, Date Posted, Salary, Job Function, Industry, and Experience Level.  If you click on “Advanced” right under the word “Search” near the top left corner of the page – all of these options will open up in a more easy to use box (similar to that you will find under the “People” category).
  4. Companies: the Companies category will enable you to search all of the REGISTERED companies on LinkedIn, which means all of these companies have corresponding LinkedIn Company Pages. The advanced search section here allows you to filter by Relationship, Location, Job Opportunities, Industry, Company Size, Number of Followers, and Fortune.
  5. Groups: this is a search that I have taken you through on a couple of previous posts. Here you will be able to find the membership groups available on LinkedIn that pertain to your search criteria.  You will be able to refine your search through Relationship, Categories, and Languages.
  6. Updates: this is a terrific, and little used, search by newcomers to LinkedIn. This allows you to search all of the status updates that are made on LinkedIn. These include profile updates and status updates. This gives you refining criteria such as Network, Company, Location, Industry, Time, School, Group, Topics, Seniority, and Update Type.
  7. Inbox:  this is the final area where you are able to search on LinkedIn in this section. This will enable you to search your inbox for any messages that are relevant to your search term.

And finally one last search tip: when you are using the LinkedIn search function, use it the same as you would Google, Bing, or any other search engine. So, with that in mind, if you search for social media Florida, you will get the results for each of the key terms (social, media, Florida).  But if you type in “social media Florida” or social+media+Florida and you will get EXACT results in any category. This will help laser focus your search.

Isn’t it a relief to be able to narrow your focus and separate the meaningful connections from the deceptive or time-wasting ones? Use these methods to make connections for yourself or your client and you’ll soon start to see your network branch and grow in a variety of new and exciting directions.

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How To Engage With Influencers And Form Strong Partnerships: 12 Expert Tips

How To Engage With Influencers And Form Strong Partnerships 12 Expert Tips
20Jul

by Forbes Agency Council | Expert Panel 

One big key to generating results with an influencer marketing campaign is ensuring that the influencer’s fan base and the content shared align with what the brand stands for and what it is trying to achieve. So, before they can leverage the power of an influencer, brands must conduct effective outreach and partner with the right one.

Below, 12 members of Forbes Agency Council each provide their top piece of advice for reaching out and engaging with influencers. With this field perpetually evolving, their expert insights can help brands find influencers whose followers most closely resemble their target audiences and create partnerships that benefit both parties.

This article originally appeared on Forbes.com, on July 20, 2021. Read the rest of the article here.

 

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What to do When Your Marketing Campaign Gets #Canceled

What to do When Your Marketing Campaign Gets #Canceled
20Jul

More and more commonly in the age of social media, high budget movie productions are finding themselves increasingly at the mercy of Twitter. Back in March when Justice League was scheduled to premiere on HBO Max, an hour of footage was accidentally uploaded about a week early, soon followed by incredibly negative social media coverage about the film’s poor pacing and subpar special effects.

It was just one more drop in the bucket of bad news for the film’s production company, Warner Bros., which had already been plagued by behind the scenes accusations of racism, sexism, and overbearing studio interference.

More recently, the much anticipated cinematic adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical In The Heights caught heat after a tweet thread discussing possible racist undertones in the film went viral just after the film’s premiere.

An impromptu apology tour kicked off shortly after, with Miranda himself posting a promise to do better, for a production he was barely involved in. All it took was one, pretty innocuous, tweet to start a national conversation about the film, and the stink of “problematic”, bad buzz will probably never go away.

This begs the question. What can you do when your very public, very expensive project finds itself #canceled mid marketing campaign?

  • Be Proactive. The longer you let a situation fester, the more time audiences will have to run wild with misinformation and speculations as to why you haven’t spoken up. It’s not always healthy to assume the worst, but when there’s money and reputations on the line, it’s in your best interest to have external communication protocols set up and a response to literally anything that might go wrong.
  • Don’t Attempt a Cover-Up. It didn’t work for Nixon, it ain’t gonna work for you. Often, trying to conceal wrongdoing will just leave a worse taste in people’s mouths than whatever the original offense was.
  • Apologize Twice. The first time with words, the second time with actions. In the interest of getting a quick response out, release a statement saying you’re deeply sorry, admitting fault, and a commitment to do better in the future. Then, once your team has surveyed the situation with more time, come out with a plan for how you’re going to handle the situation you’ve found yourself in. This will give you the time to respond more carefully and thoughtfully. And preferably not through social media.
  • Be empathetic. The word of the year is “empathy”; audiences want to see a brand acting human, and there’s no better time to do that than when your brand is in the middle of catching major heat. BP did this successfully after the Deepwater Horizon disaster of 2010. While their approach wasn’t perfect, no one could say they didn’t respond as humanly as a multi-billion dollar company can. Compare this response to the Challenger Explosion where NASA officials went on a lengthy and public blame game rather than admitting fault and offering condolences.
  • If possible, avoid conflict. There can’t be any bad press if you remove the source of conflict, right? In June of 2020, Disney announced it would be remodelling one of its more famous attractions, Splash Mountain. Now, the ride in and of itself contains no objectionable material, but its basis—the 1946 film “Song of the South”—is regarded as a massive, racist stain on Disney’s history. The House of Mouse has been silent about “Song of the South” for a long time, refusing to even reissue it digitally (and this is Disney we’re talking about). Seeing the beginnings of a “conversation” stirring up on Twitter, the parks decided preemptively to announce their makeover of the ride, as well as the removal of the film’s most famous song, “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah”, from the parks.

Have you ever run a campaign that came under fire? How many of these strategies did you use to get yourself out of hot water?

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12 Useful Apps For Busy Public Relations Executives

12 Useful Apps For Busy Public Relations Executives
14Jul

by Forbes Agency Council | Expert Panel 

If there is one constant in the world of public relations executives, it’s that they are always busy. In addition to countless other responsibilities, they must maintain strong connections with their clients, understand their companies inside and out and stay on top of trends in their industry.

Thankfully, there are numerous digital apps that can help them manage all of this. Here, 12 Forbes Agency Council members each share one useful app they rely on and explain what makes it so great for those in this role.

This article originally appeared on Forbes.com, on July 14, 2021. Read the rest of the article here.

 

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Keeping in Touch: Tips for Running a Team Remotely

Keeping in Touch Tips for Running a Team Remotely
13Jul

So, you’ve decided to continue working remotely. Office life wasn’t right for your business, and the pandemic helped you realize that your best work gets done when you let your employees escape the mother ship to work on their own time.

Working remotely is a benefit to both employers and their workforce. You have less overhead when it comes to maintaining an office, they have a more flexible schedule. But, a remote set-up isn’t the kind of thing you set and forget. You still need to think about how a remote workstyle is going to affect how your business operates.

Here are some things to consider.

Hire with Remote Communication in Mind

When you’re looking to add a new person to your remote team, you’re going to have a new set of requirements on top of the typical interview questions. How well can this person stay on task? Do they have a stable place to work from? How do they deal with distractions? Do they have experience working independently? How are their communication skills?

This person is going to be working closer to home than most people—figuratively and literally. And there are a lot of factors completely independent from the ability to perform the job that will determine if someone is the right fit for a remote position. For instance, their interests. Someone with hobbies or interests outside of work shows a higher motivation than someone who clocks out and sits in front of the TV until bedtime.

Working remotely can have its fair share of communication issues and misunderstandings. Be sure that you institute an open door policy between the team, yourself, management, and within the team itself so that everyone feels comfortable clarifying and comprehending anything necessary. Planning ahead for a remote employee instead of an office-based employee is going to save you a lot of grief in dealing with communication mishaps down the road.

Come Together, Even When Working Apart

No employee is an island. Nobody is going to feel satisfied clocking in, not talking to any of their coworkers for eight hours, working head down at their home office all day, and then clocking out. Even when you’re working remotely, you need to find ways to create a team environment.

If your team is composed entirely of locals, make time to hang out outside of work hours, either after punching out or at the office, if applicable. You don’t need to work too hard at this to be successful. It doesn’t really matter what you do, the team will just be happy to get out of their houses and have some fun on the company’s dime.

But, if your employees are spread out across the country and can’t all meet up to go axe throwing or on a brewery crawl, there’s still plenty that you can do

Be a Trusting Leader

Try and strike a balance between over-managing and going ghost. Do not micromanage your team, but always be available when one of your employees has a question.

Nobody flourishes when their boss—virtually or in-person—is watching them like a hawk. But also, if you’re too distant and they feel like they’re bothering you every time they send an IM, you’re not creating a hospitable environment for them either.

You hired your employees, you should be confident in their ability to deliver on time. I don’t constantly impress the importance of deadlines on my staff because I don’t have to. They know what things need to be delivered to a client, when campaigns are launching, and what emails can wait until morning.

Also, budget time in your day for Zoom calls. Emails are cold and intimidating—they lack the human touch and are very open to misinterpretation. 

Show Investment in your Team

I actively encourage our Go! Agents to seek out training materials that would benefit them. As we’re not in the office, it’s can be hard to know what skills someone needs to brush up on or who would benefit from learning something new.

When you talk to your team about their future plans, moving up with your company, and their career goals, they’ll feel less like worker drones that you could replace at any time. And that worker drone feeling is pervasive in remote culture—you need to prune it the minute you see it, or it will fester and you’ll lose some of your best employees.

Keeping a business going from the comfort of your own home is a convenience, but I wouldn’t call it a luxury. I’ve made the decision to open up the office again on an intermittent basis so that the team can come back and reforge that collaborative spirit they had pre-pandemic. But for companies who might not have that option, you can be successful running your business remotely. You just have to pay close attention to what matters most: the people doing the work.

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5 Email Marketing Tips That Will Get Your Emails Opened

5 Email Marketing Tips That Will Get Your Emails Opened
6Jul

A good email can get you conversions and gain your client a lifelong, loyal following. A good email that sits in your subscribers’ inbox unopened, however? That’ll get you nothing except a call with your clients where they ask “why aren’t these emails doing anything?”

You need those suckers opened if you want to have any effect on your target audience. Luckily, whether an email is left unread is only partially up to fate. There are more than a few variables that crafty marketers have total control over.

Be thorough, but also make it snappy

Is that a contradiction? Yes. Is that also the best advice for increasing your clickthrough rate? Also yes.

The optimal subject line length for an email is about 41 characters or 6 to 10 words. So you have enough space to set up a good mystery that opening your email will solve, but not enough to waste a character.

So, what’s the best advice for making your subject lines short, sweet, and profitable? Here are a few things to consider.

Yes, the use of emojis anywhere is a controversial, hot-button issue here in the digital marketing world, but the facts are these: people respond to them and they save space.

Secondly—capitalization might actually play a huge role in whether or not someone opens your email. Title case? Make everything lower case? We suggest some A/B testing to get to the bottom of this conundrum.

Add value to your customer’s lives

There are a lot of things that could be preventing your audience from opening your emails. Don’t let it be the one thing you have total control over: the content.

It’s super easy to lose your customers’ attention when it comes to emails. You don’t even have to be thirsty or annoying—you just have to be uninteresting. And it only takes one lackluster newsletter to lose a reader.

Always ensure that your emails are adding value to your readers’ lives. Always pay off the promise of your subject lines. Here are some easy ways to make sure all of your emails are valuable:

  1. Share an engaging, informative, and relatable article…and be sure to share your commentary on it. They can go look up an article anywhere. Readers are subscribed to your email list because they want to hear from you.
  2. Even better: write an engaging, informative, and relevant article yourself. Why boost similar content when you could boost your own and help cement your reputation as a person your audience should listen to?
  3. Take note of popular items (on a personalized basis, more on that later) and let your customers know when that item is back in stock or on sale.
  4. Giveth to receiveth. Offer up birthday coupons, anniversary coupons, occasional free-shipping offers, or BOGOs. You know what will make someone open an email at lightspeed? Free stuff.

Be sure to welcome your new readers

Your most recent sign-ups are the people most likely to open your emails, so don’t be afraid to double and triple dip early on. In addition to sending newsletters or coupon codes, make sure that upon signing up, your audience is enrolled in a welcome sequence.

Common sense might say that you should cater your efforts towards the people who’ve been subscribed to you the longest. Sounds right, but alas: incorrect. Just because someone has been subscribed to your emails for a long time does not make them a valuable customer. Think about it—someone who’s been lounging on your email list has already decided not to buy from you. Or else they would have done it already.

Every email is either a soft or hard pitch to—in impolite, but honest terms—get your customers money. When you pop up in your customers’ inbox right after sign-up with a welcome sequence, you’re warming up your pitch to decrease conversion time. And guess what: it works!

Personalize your emails

Honestly, a lot of people just like attention. Humans have a Pavlovian response to seeing their name—they want to interact with something that’s calling them out directly. In short, always include your reader’s names. Every major email marketing platform will include first name personalization, it’s the baby steps of making custom, engaging emails.

Other important details to personalize are the locations and time zones of specific readers. Here’s the situation—if you send out your emails to everyone on your list at noon your time, some people might receive it at 3am, others at 9pm. Neither of these times are optimal for checking one’s email. So what will happen is when your readers check their email at 8 or 9 in the morning, your email will be just one in a long stack. 

BustedTees increased their email revenue by almost 10% just by taking time to geographically plan out their sending patterns. I highly recommend reading this case study if you need more motivation to do the same.

Segment your email lists

Segmented and targeted emails generate 58% of all revenue.

Ergo, if you’re engaging in email marketing, you need to be segmenting your email lists. The more closely targeted your emails are, the more likely people will be to click them. There are many ways to segment your email campaigns—a few simple updates to a generic email may be all it takes to increase open rates.

The ways you can segment your email list are virtually endless. You can segment by role or job title, your customer’s stage in the sales cycle, the size of their company, the average value of their order, and how long they’ve been on the email list.

What can this do for your readers? Here’s a hypothetical. If you were an airline, you could segment your subscribers by location and keep them constantly updated on the best flight deals from your airline. The possibilities are endless. What are some additional ways you can think of to segment your subscribers?

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16 Smart Marketing Approaches To Build Brand Recognition

16 Smart Marketing Approaches To Build Brand Recognition
30Jun

by Forbes Agency Council | Expert Panel 

If people don’t know about your brand or what it has to offer, your business won’t be able to grow and thrive. With so many channels available to help companies reach potential customers these days, though, it can be challenging to figure out the best way to create brand recognition.

Distributing key information through social media channels, your website and other outlets can help you build connections with consumers, making them aware of what your company stands for and what it can offer them. However, having a clear strategy is the secret to establishing that awareness.

Here, 16 members of Forbes Agency Council share their best tips for making your brand more visible and recognizable.

This article originally appeared on Forbes.com, on June 30, 2021. Read the rest of the article here.

 

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10 Innovative Ways Brands Can Leverage Facebook And Instagram Stories

10 Innovative Ways Brands Can Leverage Facebook And Instagram Stories
29Jun

by Forbes Agency Council | Expert Panel 

Facebook and Instagram have been incredibly effective marketing channels for quite some time. Now, brands can also leverage the Stories feature on both platforms to create deeper connections with users. Stories often offer more interactive options than regular social posts, and companies can use this to their advantage by creating unique content that captures the attention of consumers as they scroll through their feed.

As with any social media marketing, coming up with a solid strategy is the key to seeing the strongest returns on investments in this particular area. When it comes to utilizing the Stories feature on either platform, brands have a wide spectrum of effective approaches to choose from. Here, 10 members of Forbes Agency Council explore some of the most innovative ways companies can leverage the content they share via Stories to better connect with consumers.

This article originally appeared on Forbes.com, on June 29, 2021. Read the rest of the article here.

 

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How to Create a Socially Aware Marketing Campaign

How to Create a Socially Aware Marketing Campaign
29Jun

It’s a tricky tightrope to walk, trying to tie your marketing campaign in with ongoing social justice movements. Sometimes you get a thoughtful, well-produced campaign that respects the issue it’s talking about, like Nike’s recent “For Once, Don’t Do It” campaign. Other times you get Kendall Jenner “healing” America’s racial divide with Pepsi.

So with so much at risk, why will brands want to keep attaching themselves to potentially controversial topics? Because audiences demand it. People want to know that the brands they care about stand for more than just selling products. And with so much competition in the marketplace for nearly every industry, it’s imperative that brands stop seeing customers, and start seeing loyal fanbases.

If your client comes to you with the desire to attach their company to a social cause, help them ponder these three things…

  1. It’s very, very important that you understand the issue you’re talking about. Do your homework and hire consultants if you need them. When you understand the complexity of the movement you’re attaching your brand to, you can add content of value. For example, Ben & Jerry’s have been vocal supporters of Black Lives Matter for several years, but they don’t end their activism at branded BLM ice cream (they don’t do that at all, wisely). They have literature on their website that’s meant to help educate customers about both BLM and their stance.
  2. Make sure your own house is clean before you start your campaign. Ben & Jerry’s has a long history of activism to back up their support of BLM—can you say the same? Showing support for Asian Americans in the midst of a series of racist attacks is a good thing, but if your business is remarkably non-diverse or a prominent member of your company has a history of racially charged language…maybe just stay quiet and donate. 
  3. You’ve gotta walk the walk. If you’re going to talk about the need for diversity within certain sectors, you’d better have a diverse workforce yourself, or at least some non-vague commitments and initiatives to grow one. A lot of companies have started to take this hint and begun overhauling their diversity and inclusion efforts to create better spaces for their employees and their communities.

But what about backlash? Social justice movements have a lot of support among the media, but what about your client’s audience? Well, let’s talk about that.

Will backlash really hurt you?

All signs point to no, not really. The previously mentioned Kendall Jenner Pepsi ad faced several weeks of unanimously scathing backlash and yet Pepsi is still a preeminent brand and Jenner’s net worth is an estimated $45 million dollars. Of course, both Pepsi and the tangential Kardashian sister were massively popular prior to the commercial, so there’s only so much internet backlash can do to a pair of massively wealthy entities like them.

Let’s take a look back at another maligned ad campaign, Gillette’s “The Best Men Can Be” ad that tackled toxic masculinity. Again, the negative reactions were strong, with more than a few very angry men posting videos of themselves flushing their Gillette razors down the garbage disposal. But, on the other hand, for a solid week, there were a lot of people talking about Gillette, and studies of brand loyalty suggest that even the people who loudly disavowed the company continued to buy their products if they were already.

All in all, if you can find a positive, educational, additive, and not overly thirsty way of attaching your brand to an ongoing social movement, there’s not a ton of harm in doing it. However, failing to take the right steps could land you in hot water, and that’s not something every brand can recover from.

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The 6 Questions You Should Be Asking Yourself About Privacy Policies

The 6 Questions You Should Be Asking Yourself About Privacy Policies
22Jun

Sweeping privacy changes are coming to Facebook, Google, and Instagram. What does this mean for the brands and clients that you manage? Well…quite a lot.

Here are the six big questions that you should be asking yourself as these changes begin to hit, as well as my observations and recommended solutions!

1) Why are the changes to Google and Facebook’s privacy policies significant for brands and affiliates to take note of?

For Facebook, it will impact our ability to accurately track and add to retargeting audiences. This is going to cut deeply into a marketer’s ability to remarket or retarget on Facebook and their sister platform, Instagram.

There will also now be more general ad events than specific ones. So “purchase” will override “add to cart” in reporting. So you will have a max of 8 events per domain. And the new default for mapping user journeys is a simple 7-day click-through attribution.

For Google, we’ll have less data and thus less insight into our conversion metrics. Google Chrome is also removing cookies from its browser.

2) What is going to change when these updates are in place? How will it affect advertising campaigns for operators and affiliates?

Our ad strategies will need to shift quickly and focus on more general platform options and less data. Advertisers will need to pivot their strategies and find out how to fill in the blanks and keep a closer eye on ads more than normal—no “set it and forget” for a while.

3) What are some of the measures we can put in place now to support our businesses through these changes and keep momentum on traffic-driving activity?

Here are some things you can do immediately…

  • Shift audience-building strategies (like Custom Audiences, Lookalike Audiences) or Interest-based audiences.
  • Prioritize events and conversions: choose the best 8 events and make sure they provide the most telling data.
  • Refocus your metrics: you will need to learn to interpret your results differently. Look at metrics that you may have overlooked, including vanity metrics such as link clicks, website visits, and other on-Facebook metrics. This will help you bridge the gap.
  • Update Google Analytics for Firebase to support the new SKAdNetwork tracking tool.

4) What tips can you give to affiliates or affiliate/digital marketers managing paid media budgets right now to get maximum ROI on campaigns they might be running?

Focus on new audience-building strategies immediately and rework your events on your website. Understand that you will see some very steep drops in the results of your campaigns. So manage the expectations of your clients in advance. I would suggest having calls with your clients to explain how this will affect things.

Finally, think out of the box and try new advertising venues you’ve ignored in the past. Facebook Lead Forms (and other on-site activities) are great conversion tools!

5) We all know that COVID has impacted budgets, but what are you seeing now as we come out of lockdown? How are companies, brands, affiliates doing things differently now to keep brand reach and customer engagement in the paid media space? 

They are much more attuned to the many different metrics and ways to execute campaigns: reporting, conversion, pixel-related items, and integration of shops. I have seen a lot of them get more involved in learning how these changes will affect them rather than burying their head in the sand.

6) What big changes do you foresee in 2022 around paid media, cookieless tracking, and the evolution of technology and data impacting the way we plan media campaigns for acquisition results? 

I think we will see a shift to more interest-based audiences and brands not putting all of their money in Facebook, Instagram, and Google but trying other methods.

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