Clair Trebes

E-mail : [email protected]

Notoriously known here as "Queen Bee" Clair is a huge fan of all things Social Media, Online Marketing & Branding along with being a BIG lover of House & Techno music. With a whole load of experience under her belt in all things marketing from both an online & offline business, what she doesn't know about Social Media, probably isn't worth knowing! Clair is heavily involved in her family business and also runs her very own successful online business Clair Trebes Online and its affiliated site. Cross The Line Clair enjoys writing and has been featured on many different respected blogs in a variety of different areas.   You can follow Clair on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.     Read more posts by this author

It’s Better To Stand Out Than To Fit In – PART 1 of 2

  • June 3 , 2014

Hello Everyone, firstly happy Tuesday – secondly how the hell is it June? Anyhow, here at Bizzebee we have a posting schedule that we follow here, and I am stepping in today for Andi who is otherwise engaged with work commitments so couldn’t post today …. All is not lost though, as I have a really great 2 part special for you today to really get your teeth into.

Some of these I may have already covered in some level of detail in previous posts and updates I’ve made. However, I have done SO much reading over time, and researching and thought it would be a good chance to put all of the information down in one place so you take take away from it what YOU want and start applying to your own business.

Every marketing campaign has the same end goal – to raise awareness of a particular product / service / business, its HOW you go about achieving it that is important. Social Media is a great FREE way (as I’m sure you are all very aware of now) of helping you reach this end goal.

My ‘Think Tank’ is a really great place to be at times, all of the information that I digest allows me to pull all of this together so I can share with you.

 Here are the first 25 ways of getting you to STAND OUT from the crowdIt's better to stand out than to fit in part 1 | Bizzebee

1)     FIND AND SHARE GOOD CONTENT – People want to see and share compelling, inspiring, helpful, valuable content – if you find it OR produce it, get it out there, people like to share it and that’s how it goes viral.

2)     WRITE CONTENT – Whether you are a great content curator, or have a flair for writing your own content, or even reviewing / posting an opinion about another article. This is crucial in starting ANY social media campaign. Gear the content at your target market – think about what they want to know about, and supply it. For more information on creating that all important blog check out http://startablogthatmatters.com

3)     BUILD THE HYPE WELL IN ADVANCE – Use your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ accounts to build the buzz surrounding the holidays – people often only do this as the holidays are upon us, but its far better to build this up in advance – get people talking and looking forward to whatever is coming up.

4)     ADD SOCIAL BOOKMARKS LINKS – Make it EASY for your content to be shared and commented on! Include the social bookmark links and buttons to your blog, website and most important posts

5)     CONSISTENCY IS KEY – Make sure you update regularly and consistently – its important that people identify WHO you are and what you are about – so if you have a style of writing, or make videos to get your point across – make sure you use that to get your message across so people understand what you are about. If people know you are hanging out where you say you are and are working on updates frequently, they tend to come back to see whats happening.

6)     BRANDING – It is important that people know what your brand is about, and you can really use social media to get the most out of it. Seasonal timeline covers, backgrounds and profile images – ensure that if you do update one, then you update them all to mirror the same.

7)     WRITE COMPELLING HEADLINES – You need to draw people when you are promoting your content on social media sites – write something that interests people so much that they want to read the rest of what you have to say. If you want to learn more about copywriting and writing compelling headlines then check out http://www.copywritingsupremacy.com

8)     MEASURE AND EVALUATE – Everyone goes on about ROI with Social Media, and it is very important to track your success rate, and how it compares to more traditional marketing methods – google analytics and dashboards like Hootsuite are great for keeping a check on your conversion rates and tracking where the traffic is coming from.

9)     CREATE POPULAR LISTS –  TOP 25 WAYS TO INCREASE TRAFFIC – A little bit like this list here – if you compile something like this they tend to get passed around online very quickly!

10)  METADATA AND TAGGING – Without going into detail about SEO (search engine optimisation) you can dramatically improve your visibility and ranking on search engines like google by utilising this. Metadata is data which is a description of the characteristics of a piece of information. Tags can be terms or keywords that are assigned to particular resource. Tagging and incorporating other metadata can help improve searching and measure the spread of information.

11)  COMBINE SOCIAL MEDIA AND TRADITIONAL MARKETING – Social Media is a PART of your overall marketing efforts, so ALWAYS ensure that any printed marketing materials show your social media addresses and profiles – brochures, business cards, leaflets, booklets et al. You want to FULLY get to grips with Social Media from the word go – then give The Social Networking Academy a visit!

12)  USE WORDPRESS PLUGINS – If your blog or website is powered by WordPress, then you must ensure that you incorporate the plugins that will help your page become more visible and the content is shared, particularly the ‘retweet’ button for Twitter.

13)  USE A MICROSITE – This can be a 1 page website or even a cleverly designed Facebook landing page that that can showcase your social media and general marketing efforts, and can also be specifically target driven to a campaign.

14)  COMMUNITY PLATFORMS – By this I mean Forums, Groups, FanPages – build up a following and a network of people to talk to around these. It helps with engagement and conversation, and if you are somewhat of an ‘expert’ in your niche / industry then get involved in Forums – answer questions and share information with people.

15)  ADD A FACEBOOK LIKE BOX – This is the quickest and easiest way for someone to ‘endorse’ your brand – the power of the ‘like’ is incredible, and if there is a one click box on your blog or website that is easily visible then people will use it! Facebook make it even easier to add this, with their social plugins that are added to your sites with a simple piece of HTML code., and people can still LIKE your page whilst visiting your website and blog.

16)  ADD A FACEBOOK SHARE BUTTON – Install the wordpress plugin that will allow the content your audience is reading to be posted directly to their Facebook wall without even leaving the page they are looking at!

17)  DON’T OVER HASHTAG TWEETS – If you are anything like me, I kinda switch off to those tweets that just have 4/5 # per tweet – that’s to get their visibility up, not necessarily providing me with anything of value

18)  WORK TOWARDS A HIGHER FOLLOWERS TO FOLLOWING RATIO – If you are seen to have more followers on twitter than you it kind of enhances your influence on the site which then add’s to your twitter profile’s SEO potential AND also further backs up the concept / idea that you are a leader in your field / niche

19)  AVOID ‘OVER SELLING’ – Rather than constantly tweeting and updating about what you are selling across your social profiles, look for useful content to post about how to help people out, by doing this, and occasionally adding a self promoting post you are building up trust between you and your audience – which increases the chances of them turning from a prospect into a paying customer.

20)  ADD A LINKEDIN SHARE BUTTON – Install the wordpress plugin which allows the content to be posted directly to a linkedin profile and any relevant group people are a member of on there, again without leaving the website page they have visited. (gotta love these wordpress plugins!!!)

21)  COMMENT ON BLOGS – Find the top 10 influencers in your niche, and start commenting on their blogs – this forms a big part of making and establishing connections with people

22)  USE YOUR ONLINE COMMUNITY – There is no point in building it up if you don’t use it! Ask for feedback, run competitions and giveaways and always remember to THANK people if they mention you, retweet your posts or share your updates.

23)  GIVE OUT FREE TIPS AND ADVICE – Twitter is a great place to do this, by added a specialist branded hashtag – I regularly do this on my twitter and I find that it sparks a lot more engagement and responses from people. To take it a further step, you can link your twitter to a Facebook tab purely for twitter and then start to use Youtube to create videos to expand on these tips and create some great helpful tutorials.

24)  CONDUCT RESEARCH POLLS – You need to find solutions and answers for people, the only way to do so is to ask them what their challenges and limitations are – this will then allow you the chance to review and look at how your product and service can help them, and then communicate that to them.

25)  WRITE BENEFIT RELATED CONTENT – Your audience will always be thinking ‘Whats In It For Me’ so it’s very important than when writing content or sharing content always highlight and talk about the problems that your product and service can solve! People don’t tend to be that interested in what your product or service features are, but more what it can do for them!

Wow, that’s a LOT of information that I’ve shared there with you!!! Stay tuned for part 2 – where I run through another 25 top tips that will ultimately HELP you generate more traffic and visibility online.

One thing I would like to stress to you here is that, if like me, you are finding there is a BIG long list of things that you know you need to do, and that is always growing …. Try setting yourself smaller more manageable lists. For example, if you accomplish ONE of the above 25 tips each day, in just under 1 month you will have made BIG progress towards your end result.

Have a truly fabulous week everyone & I look forward to writing again for you soon!

Clair

The Online Story Of A Real Life Printing Business | Bizzebee

The Online Story Of A REAL Life Printing Business

  • May 27 , 2014

Hello Readers,

Things have been really busy for me in both the online and offline business world of late, and as such I wanted to write this weeks’ post to give an update on the offline business that I have involvement in. It’s been 3 years now since I started to use Social Media to network and create more business opportunities for it and as we’ve just recently moved to our new printing premises, I thought it would be apt to share this post with you all today.

As you may (or may not) know my family business in the offline world is in Printing and Graphic Design I make now secret of how hard this industry is, and during the last 5 or so years it’s taken a really big hit. 3 years ago or thereabouts I decided to give myself a little “project” and that was to see exactly what social media was about for business, and more importantly HOW it could help my family business with more opportunities. I have been working tirelessly investigating new avenues to reach new people, market some of our products and offers too, and when I realised the strength of Social Media if applied correctly I’ve steadily grown the business month on month over the last 3 years now.

Our business handles all sorts of different jobs. Sometimes we just have to design a logo for someone’s website or business, and other times we have to handle printing whatever fliers they will be distributing. We also do poster printing as well as invitations, and signs of all different dimensions. As varied as our business is, it can be difficult at times to let potential clients know we are available and provide these services, which is why I undertook this project.

Before I progress, I just want to let you know, we do not rely 100% on Social Media efforts for getting new business, and neither should any business – it’s just ONE part of the marketing mix. 

I’m a firm believer in never putting all your eggs in one basket, our Social Media work forms a part of a much bigger picture, and I only have an allotted amount of time that I can dedicate to this particular business, because of all the other work that I have going on. The business has a clear cut marketing plan that combines both the traditional marketing methods, along with the new, and I think that it is very important for ANY business to not pigeon hole themselves or be ‘closed’ to any opportunity to network / create new business possibilities.

WHY? Because in this world today, all types of marketing has a time and a place, for anyone that doesn’t believe in the power of one method, or places one over another, I would just urge you to research and keep an open mind, not all marketing tactics and plans will work for each business, but without investigating the possibility further, you could simply be missing out that vital ingredient that could transform your business.

3 years in and our turnover has increased by £100K during that time and is growing month on month. Mainly from a promotion of selling 500 Business Cards for the price of 250 (£27) Make NO mistake I am not stating that this is a life changing figure, but what I am trying to highlight is that in a ‘real’ business selling products in an industry that is effectively killing itself with undercutting on pricing, our achievements are commendable. None of those orders are ‘bad debts’ either, we have taken zero risk in selling print, none of those orders taken have been on a ‘credit’ basis. All orders are exactly the kind of clients and customers that any business today who wants to try and do better needs. Payment always in advance / at the time of order.

The Online Story Of A REAL Life Printing Business | Bizzebee

The Online Story Of A REAL Life Printing Business | Bizzebee

The Online Story Of A REAL Life Printing Business | Bizzebee

The great thing about using Social Media to achieve this is simple – it requires minimal effort (in the grand scheme of things), being realistic here, as long as you are there everyday (at some point) you are naturally going to meet people and make connections and build relationships. The biggest bonus of course is that the only real thing it costs is your time (which to be fair is actually of real value – but a lot of people tend to judge “cost” in monetary terms, so in that respect its “free”)

The printing business is a family run business, and my Dad is very hands on in his role as the boss, we sit down and regularly review orders in, who our new clients are, the promotions and offers that we want to run, and the more you throw yourself into getting involved the more momentum builds. He now leaves the running and managing of this side of things to me and across the social networking sites people now know me as the ‘face’ behind the company.

I am a big believer in showing your personality, and I do honestly believe that this has been a big part in developing our online presence. People feel like they ‘know’ me, they know if i’ve been away, TV shows I’ve been watching and all kinds of things on a surface level. On the other side of things, as someone who tweets, uses linkedin and connects with various facebook pages I find I am naturally more drawn to those profiles that I feel I can ‘see’ a person behind the company name.

Without a doubt the work that I have been doing has created brand loyalty, these people that we have printed business cards for and designed logos for will recommend and praise our services to their peers if they ask for a good, affordable, reliable printing company! The best thing here is, we have not asked for a single recommendation. As a consumer, when something is good today, we all love to make a deal out of it and share it with the social networking world. And I think that is a key factor right now.

Social Media encourages ‘sharing’ as much as we might have frowned or disagreed with Mark Zuckerberg at F8 Conference when he introduced timeline and said he wanted to bring the world together to connect and share their life experiences, he was right (to a degree)

If you have immersed yourself in Social Media on both a business and personal level, you want to share stories and experiences with your peers. I have, and will continue to do so. If I get a good service, or I rate a product I’ve used, then I will tell people about it ….. and similarly I do the same when I have a bad experience too!

Do you know what else is great? Out of all the orders in the last 3 years we have generated, a LOT of them are returning customers …. Something that as a business we feel is very important, because it proves that we have built trust and provided a good service with these people, and for a business relationship born out of a ‘virtual’ environment clearly means that we have been doing something right.

One customer who has been with us for the last 2 years is continually growing his monthly spend, and if things continue, he could be spending between £5k a month with us by the end of the year. We are working together to nurture our relationship and build the trust on both ends, and for now, this is a risk free customer, who we are dealing with on a ‘pay as you go’ basis.

I had a conversation only last week with yet another returning customer, and he said to me this ‘its amazing what the power of ONE tweet can do’ And I am inclined to agree with him you know! The facts truely do speak for themselves.

In conclusion to this post, I think the message I want to get out there to you all is this:

If you are wondering ‘can Social Media work for MY business’ or you are wondering whether it is worth the effort, all I can say to you is ‘TRY’ You have absolutely nothing to lose, and everything to gain. If I didn’t make the effort to try this out with the offline business, I probably wouldn’t be sitting in the position I am now in (for the opportunities it has opened for me personally is unbelieveable) and more importantly my Dad’s business wouldn’t have reached the amount of people it had, nor built an online following that has allowed us to reach new prospects AND turn them into paying customers.

Finally, like I have said many times before, I am no Marketing ‘expert’ or ‘guru’ I am just a regular person, who saw an opportunity and took the chance to explore and develop it. The printing industry is a tough place to be, and with not much going on around me, I got nosey, and with time on my hands during work hours I decided to make myself busy. So if you think ‘I don’t have a clue’ then trust me you are not alone, because 3 years ago or so, I was that person – I used facebook to upload and tag pictures and talk to my friends!  Now I am advising people and helping people to make a start using these free tools that are at the end of our fingertips to establish their business’ online and make a big difference to how they approach marketing, all thanks to the ‘on the job’ research and training I have done with the Printing business.

Check out this timelapse we did last week on an iPad showing our new machine entering the building – again a great use of social media to connect and show people who we are 🙂

I will continue to update you with the progress that we are making with the offline business, but if you want to stay in touch then give us a follow on any of our social channels – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram or G+

Speak to you all soon 🙂

Clair

The Power Of A Retweet

  • May 13 , 2014

Morning Everyone,

So it’s been a wee while since I wrote a post about my most favourite social networking site, so I thought today would be an ideal opportunity to do so.

The focus of this post is the Twitter ‘retweet’ and I want to give you a few tips that can help you create a more powerful retweet.

But firstly, what exactly is a ‘Retweet’

This is Twitter’s answer to giving someone a ‘shout out’ So when you see someone that you follow tweet something that you like, find of value/interesting, or even funny you can show your appreciation for this by broadcasting that tweet to your followers.

This of course works both ways, so if you are posting things on twitter, you may well find that your followers are also showing their appreciation by doing the exact same to you (providing of course you aren’t tweeting complete gibberish that has no value / benefit to your followers)

Like everything today, there are of course ways in which you can improve how you use the retweet facility that can give you a better chance in your tweets going viral across the network (and obviously this is the name of the game – maximum exposure)

Here is an example of a retweet that I have recently shared in the account for Affordable Printing

The Power Of A Retweet | Bizzebee

In some Social Media dashboards you might see that retweet look a little something like this

@APC_Printing RT @neondigital “Are you looking to get into the web design industry? Check out our handy tips!” 
#SouthendHour ow.ly/wKqV8 #webdesign#tips

Let me break this down for you:

RT = retweet = your followers know instantly that this information hasn’t come direct from you, but you have shared this via someone else.

@neondigital = this simply credits the person you are quoting (@ + their name)

Are you looking to get into the web design industry? Check out our handy tips!”  = A Compelling Headline (that will entice people to want to read more)

A URL of where your followers can read the article.

Most of us simply hit the ‘retweet’ button and the tweets are shared exactly like the image above.

BUT WHAT IF YOU WANT TO MAKE MORE OF AN IMPACT?

You can make a few tweaks / changes to the content, to try and entice others to WANT to share it with their followers, because the more its’ retweeted, the better chance you have of the post going Viral.

Try looking at it like this:

Are you looking to get into the web design industry? Check out our handy tips! ow.ly/wKqV8 RT @neondigital  – Great tips!!! 

Here are my 7 steps to creating a more powerful retweet

  1. MOVE THE HEADLINE – For maximum impact the headline needs to be at the front of the tweet – a compelling start will entice people to read on and click through.
  2. ALWAYS INCLUDE THE NAMES OF OTHERS MENTIONED IN ARTICLE/TWEET – If other people are mentioned in the content you are retweeting or sharing, its polite and good karma to mention their username in the post.  The reason for doing this is so that it draws attention to all people the tweet has relevance too, which by the nature of how twitter works would encourage them to retweet to their followers, thus expanding the reach of your tweet.
  3. ALWAYS INCLUDE THE URL AFTER THE HEADLINE WITH A URL SHORTENER – Always remember, you are restricted to 140 characters, so you need to ensure that you are using tinyurl or bitly to shorten external web links
  4. MOVE ‘RT’ & ORIGINAL POST USER TO AFTER THE LINKS – This means you can still credit the original person posting it, but are shifting the entire focus towards the headline and the link.
  5. ADD YOUR OWN COMMENT TO THE POST – So important to include your own ‘voice’ – show appreciation, opinion – remember Social Media is all about collaborating and sharing ideas so people want to see you have actually paid attention and not just hit ‘retweet’ without actually looking into what you are retweeting!
  6. INCLUDE A HASHTAG – SO SO SO important!!! Hash tags are searched, and by adding a relevant one to the retweet, your are categorising the tweet. People have streams set up for their industry and interests by hash tags, so by adding one you are automatically giving your post a higher chance of being seen by people outside of your followers.
  7. KEEP IT SIMPLE – 140 characters is NOT a lot of words to play with, so don’t waffle … keep it short | simple and to the point. And if you want others to retweet it, leave enough characters for someone else to add their own bit to it!

I hope that you can put some of these tips into practice the next time you are going to retweet information, and pay attention to the new followers / and shares that you get! – It’s always worth looking into and checking what works and what doesn’t – a really great way of connecting and using these is by checking out Twitter networking hours – which I am a massive advocate of, and wrote a long list of all the networking hours in the UK which are worth looking at. If you want to check that then please click here.

Content Is King | Bizzebee

Content Is King

  • April 23 , 2014

Good Morning Everyone!!

Firstly, I hope everyone has had a wonderful EASTER 🙂 It was my birthday yesterday, so I wasn’t around to publish this post (apologies for that, but I took advantage of the Bank Holiday here in the UK, and rewarded myself with 5 days away from the computer screen)

You might also be pleased to know, I managed to abstain from chocolate eggs too!!!

So, I’m back today to share this post with you, I know my colleagues here at Bizzebee have written posts before about content but I decided today that I would offer my thoughts on this matter too 🙂

Content Is King

This week I want to talk to you all about CONTENT. This is the KEY element to building a lasting fan base across your Social Networks.

Content Is King

WHY?

Because you want pages and profiles that are full of life, with a community building online that is active, involved and want to know what you have to say.

In this web 2.0 world we are living in now, CONTENT REALLY IS KING. It drives traffic to your website, your blog and anywhere else you choose to have a presence.

If you are serious about your online brand, then you will need to get involved in creating content, finding content, sharing content with your peers | prospects & customers alike, and I am talking about GOOD RELEVANT Content, things that you will find interesting and believe YOUR network will also find of value.

I am going to specifically focus in on my favourite method of content creation (mainly because I love writing), which is Curation.

Curation is the process of looking through / sorting through vast snippets of information on the web and ‘re-packaging’ it in a different way. Taking what other people have said and putting your own spin on it or rewording it to make it suit your audience.

I spend a LOT of time researching and reading articles online and as a result of that I often find that I have a lot of articles and blog posts that I create based upon existing knowledge I have about a subject combined with information I have read elsewhere.

Curating is not restricted to simply ‘re-packaging’ so to speak, by this I mean that if you read an article that is reviewing a product | service and you have experience with said product, you can also offer your own review on the subject too, putting back links to the other review, almost like a comparison / contrast.

Rohit Bhargava points out clearly in a post that a content curator is always looking to share and make sense of the best most relevant content within a particular area / topic, and more often than not this is a skill that almost becomes second nature in their daily life.

In 1 day in April 2012 250 MILLION photos were uploaded to Facebook, 864,000 hours of video were uploaded to YouTube and 294 BILLION emails were sent.

So where do you go to look for all of this information?

This may seem like a silly question, given the amount of information available at our fingertips – but its not, because you want to look for the best most valuable information out there about your chosen subject / product or service.

In my post “What Is Feedly?” I talk about how you can house all of your favourite websites and blogs, in the one place (a bit like an RSS feed, which is now my favourite way to keep uptodate since Google Reader is no longer around) – This makes life a heck of a lot easier because you aren’t having to jump from website to website to read all the information. In a cool magazine type place, Feedly delivers everything you need, right when you want to see it.

The other great way to find content is to use Google Alerts – you simply set these up by keywords and you can choose to have them delivered at different intervals – as they happen, once a day, once a week etc, they are delivered direct to your email inbox. Personally I think that if you scan each alert within 60 seconds you will know if there is any articles in there that are worth opening. If you spend any longer than that scanning the alert then you should probably just delete it.

The more you spend time looking at content online that you wish to use in order to help create your content the quicker and better you will get at sifting through and identifying the good from the bad.

I have all my Google alerts delivered once a day and they cover a variety of keywords and topics, all of this information is collected and I then set myself some time each day to ‘curate’ the most interesting things and topics into my own language, that appeals to my target audience. Where do I post it? You don’t always need to have a business blog to put this information out.

The fact that Facebook allows you to create ‘notes’ can almost act like a mini blog itself. It’s a fantastic tool and there is no limit on how much you can post. The other really great thing about posting on your Facebook page with notes is that its continually building engagement on the page, which is exactly what you want.

Taking on the role of content curator for your product and helping build this online community engagement is a big task, but not one that is impossible.  The more you do it the easier it gets. And when you post the articles in the various social networks ASK for feedback – engage with the audience reading it, you will soon know if you are getting it right.

There are a few rules in which you need to bear in mind when Curating content, infact it has its very own ‘code’ 

To give you an idea of what to bear in mind for Curation best practice:

  1. If you don’t add context, or opinion, or voice and simply lift content, it’s stealing.
  2.  If you don’t provide attribution, and a link back to the source, it’s stealing.
  3. If you take a large portion of the original content, it’s stealing.
  4. If someone asks you not to curate his or her material, and you don’t respect that request, it’s stealing.
  5. Respect published rights. If images don’t allow creative commons use, reach out to the image creator–don’t just grab it and ask questions later.

So if you are ready to dive in with providing a service to your readers, then fire up that laptop and get stuck in!

Clair 🙂

Rules Of Engagement | Bizzebee

The Rules Of Engagement

  • April 8 , 2014

Your friendly resident Queen Bee is back at the reigns again kicking this week off with a new post talking once again about all things social media.

The focus of this post something which is completely key to building your brand online – ENGAGEMENT

The basis of building your brand online is down to this.  By engaging with people, you are building relationships and trust which is what Social Media in essence is based upon. You may hear the term ‘Relationship Marketing’ be thrown around these days, this is just a phrase people are using for engaging with prospects. The beauty of using Social Media is that it allows you to build good foundations with your prospects (and existing customers) by just being SOCIAL and having a chat!

So how do you go about ‘Engaging’ with people? 

I specifically want to talk about Facebook here with you all.

Facebook gives you 2 ways of engaging with people : Your personal profiles, and your business pages. Both are EQUALLY as important for driving traffic to your pages & websites. Part of Facebook’s T&C is that you can’t really use your personal profile to ‘sell’ it is personal for a reason and your business page is there to serve that purpose.

Using your personal profile you can post updates, announcements, videos that relate to your business – the only thing you can’t really do (and nor would I advise you to do) is directly sell.

There is absolutely nothing wrong in mixing up the content on your personal Facebook wall.

For example I recently posted some new photos and updates about my Puppy to which I had a lot of my friends (real life friends here) comment underneath it, not long afterwards I wrote a really great (in my opinion) blog post about Twitter optimisation and I wanted to share it with as many people as possible, so I also posted a link on my personal profile wall – this saw a slightly different type of people start to comment under this – a few of my friends who are interested in what I am doing, but then some like-minded people interested in using Social Media also commented and shared this.

Now because we are talking about personal profiles, people automatically assume that it’s just a place for your ‘Friends’ (you know those people you know in REAL Life) To a degree, this is correct, and if you choose to have no association to your business page, or just want to keep it personal then that is absolutely fine. However, if you are serious about your business / brand product or service, then I would suggest that you look to add and become ‘Facebook friends’ with like-minded people within your niche/industry.

I am often asked ‘Why should I add people outside my circle of friends?’  – Good question!

In order to build relations you have to TALK to people (it’s not really rocket science) common sense tells you that unless you make the effort to look for people to engage with, and make the effort to talk to them then you really are limiting your chances of building your brand and getting your page seen, and growing with subscribers and followers.

There is a couple of ways you can do this – starting with your own newsfeed. The Facebook newsfeed is put together based on the algorithm Edgerank, so you are automatically receiving the updates from the people you connect the most with, so I would suggest that you change how its sorted to ‘Most Recent’ rather than ‘Top Stories’ Have a look what people are up to? Are they asking questions, looking for advice that you can help with? Answer it …. Start talking!

Have a look at some of the popular pages you LIKE – see what conversations are happening over there, and get involved! Yes its VERY powerful to post as your page name across any other page on Facebook (90% of the time I am on Facebook, I am working as my business page), but sometimes you should go over there and be YOU – Comment on pictures, wish people happy birthday – it sounds all so simple, but really there is no hard and fast trick to it. PEOPLE BUY INTO PEOPLE.

When you are commenting and engaging as your ‘Page’ you will soon realise you are forming relationships with people behind other pages, so make the effort to network with them on a personal level too – get to know the page owners, and then add them against your personal page – you can then keep them in a separate list away from friends and family, and at a quick glance you can search them in one place. None of what I am telling you is hard, its just about thinking smarter:

  • DO YOU WANT TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS?
  • DO YOU WANT TO REACH PEOPLE YOU WOULD NOT NORMALLY GET ACCESS TOO?

Of course you are answering YES here, so you have to be consistent, using any social media platform does require that you engage with people on a daily basis, but there really is no big Secret to gaining hundreds if not thousands of followers / likes – it’s just about having a chat, helping out where you can, and providing valuable content to people interested in you!

A very wise internet marketer once told me that you spend 50% of your time commenting on other peoples pages – getting your name / business page seen, and you spend 50% of your time adding content and value to your own timeline (business page timeline in this case) so irrespective of how long you have to spend on social media activities everyone can get their name out there and grow their following. The more people see your name and associate it with being helpful, friendly, useful the more they will want to know more about you – so they will send you a friend request, and they will Like your page – (people are inquisitive) so it’s very important to make sure that you are on the ball and engaged.

I’ve a few general tips here I just want to finally run through to help you start engaging the content in front of you and getting that conversation flowing:

1)       Make use of the variety allowed in your status updates – Text, Links, Images (are THE most shared item on Facebook) & Video …. Variety is the spice of life and certainly does help increase user engagement!

2)      Apply the ‘Pareto’ principle (or the 80/20 rule as it’s more commonly known as) 80% of your status updates should give value to your fans / followers first, whilst 20% of status updates can be promotional or brand specific.

3)      Be a person, not a brand …. I’ve said it once and I will say it again PEOPLE BUY INTO PEOPLE, so speak like a person, the other people reading your updates will respond much more to language they can connect with. Too much jargon and PR styled writing can destroy any potential relationships and people quickly disconnect with you.

4)      Make announcements / breaking news – Announce product updates, special offers, event news, industry news on your wall (and if applicable post to personal profile too) If people see that your wall is a reliable and timely source for information they will keep coming back for more, thus increasing the engagement levels.

5)      Like other pages as both your personal profile and business page – This is important – mention the pages, thank them for their content, updates etc. to encourage cross promotion relationships or to try and develop a tagging partnership (where you are jointly tagging one another to increase visibility)

I know that many people often struggle when it comes to raising engagement, especially on Facebook now they have added in the lower organic reach, so I hope that you have been able to take something away from this post to perhaps help you in some way or another. But the main point of the post I think is to really try and drive home the fact that people buy into people.

As always, if anyone has any questions then don’t hesitate to get in contact via any of our social channels or email directly.

Customising Your LinkedIn Profile | Bizzebee

Customising Your LinkedIn Profile

  • April 4 , 2014

Afternoon Bee’s,

Firstly apologies for no Thursday post this week, it was our little techno bee Miz’s turn to share some insightful information, but where he is based (Chittagong, Bangladesh) he is experiencing some extreme weather which has left him facing a mass power outage. So being the helpful and great team we are, I offered to step in and send out a post today for you all to read.

This post is going to have a little look at customising your LinkedIn profile, and I’d quite like it to be an actionable post today, rather than a theory based one! Therefore, I’ve created a little video kicking off the first point I want to share with you, which is how to customise your LinkedIn URL.

LinkedIn doesn’t automatically give you a customised URL like mine –  uk.linkedin.com/in/clairtrebes/ – infact if you take a look at my collegue Matt’s you will see the generic default of your LinkedIn URL  uk.linkedin.com/pub/matt-smith/36/390/887

It’s quite easy and simple to change your URL – so check out the video below

Myother top tips to make sure you are giving off the right ‘image’ online are:

Look professional, but friendly! It is no good having a photo taken in a meeting room where you look rigid and uncomfortable with your arms crossed, looking quite unapproachable. Experts say that the key here is to look polished but accessible. Career counsellor Miriam Salpter is quoted in an article by Eve Tahmincioglu on msnbc.com as saying “Look at your picture and ask yourself: Would I want to go to lunch with this person?”

Keep Up Appearances. Stay away from fashion clothing or jewellery that’s trendy right now, because in a few years it might look dated. Both men and women should opt for darker colours – navy and grey are good ‘power dressing’ choices. Women should keep accessories to the bare minimum, and men should wear a tie with a simple design. Headshotphotographermatch.com says you should avoid summer wardrobe choices and stick with the autumn choices, and if all else fails they say to bring a change of clothes and get advice from whoever is taking the corporate photos!

Timing is everything (isn’t it with all things?!!!) I read a blog entry from a US based Photography Company who recommends always waiting a couple of days after a haircut (to allow it to look more natural) and making sure the photo shoot is in the morning. You will feel more energised, and the daily grind will not have taken its toll! Get lots of rest and make sure you drink plenty of water!

LinkedIn is deemed as the most “professional” of all the social networking platforms out there, so it really does matter how you pitch yourself on there, so I do hope you found this post a little helpful, with some practical tips to steer you in the right direction!

Have a lovely weekend everyone!

Your friendly resident Queen Bee Clair 🙂

What Is Feedly | Bizzebee

What Is Feedly?

  • March 25 , 2014

Afternoon Bee Readers 🙂

Wanted to write today’s post to share with you one amazing FREE tool, that I personally can’t function without, and if you read a lot of content online, you probably won’t be able too either!

Since Google Reader went into retirement last July (2013) people have been using different alternative’s to house all of their content they want to read online – and if like me you need to really keep the finger on the pulse and don’t want to miss any information, then you really do need a great RSS feed reader, and up until very recently we’ve relied heavily on Google Reader, and I would like to thank my Bizzebee colleague and friend Matt Smith for introducing me to this fantastic content tool.

What Is Feedly | Bizzebee 

What is Feedly?

There are probably a number of ways that you could better spend your time online and in jumping from site to site to try and visit all of your favorite pages in an effort to make sure you don’t miss anything new, exciting, or late breaking.

Luckily, with Feedly, you’ll never have to worry about wasting your efforts on the above ever again.

Feedly is an RSS reader on steroids

RSS technology has been around for a long time, it’s always been a relatively “sloppy” service that pumped all of your information directly to your email account (can’t cope with seeing all those emails, can you?) – or through some unwieldy software programme – with bits and pieces constantly slipping through the net. A little bit like someone with selective hearing – the old technology tended to lack consistency in what you saw.

Jumping all over the web to pull in every single one of the RSS feed, Feedly does all of the heavy lifting for you in making sure that it pulls in content from your favorite websites, news sites, RSS feeds, blogs, and YouTube channels – as well as a whole host of others with tight integration – to make sure that you never miss another new update.

Magazine like experience with every drop of your content

While most of us today have given up entirely on more traditional magazines {and rather sadly so I might add}, the truth of the matter is that the way that those printed magazines were organised delivered such a good reader experience and was so well organised. Now, thanks to the design of Feedly and the integration across multiple content sources, you’ll be able to basically create your very own magazine, and best of all …..  one that is personalised to your tastes.

Every single time that you add sources to your Feedly account they will be integrated inside of the program, helping you to get the utmost out of your content sources. Not only will you be always up-to-date with your information – but it will also be curated in an attractive, easy to read, and even easier to use format.

The best bit, you can MERGE your old Google Reader account direct to your new Feedly account :)

Specifically designed for a mobile experience, the Feedly application is the best way to make sure that you are constantly updated, wherever you may be. 

The other exciting element!

By enjoying the Feedly service  you’ll be able to take all of your content on the go – even if your regular content sites don’t have proper mobile integration – thanks to the ingenious mobile application. Redesigning all of the content that you have pushed directly through your Feedly account in an attractive user interface that is a dream to use, and this is how all web content should be enjoyed. It works SO well on my own iPhone & iPad – I literally couldn’t live without it now!

The service is available free through the iOS marketplace as well as the Android, & Google Play marketplace – making sure that you can connect to your Feedly account no matter what you happen to have on hand.

Finally …. 

If you’ve been looking for the ultimate solution in curating all of your content from around the web into a single source – so that you never have to worry about missing anything ever again – and then you need to sign up for a account as soon as humanly possible. Download the specific tools to your phone or tablet (or just use the browser-based solution that is available) and you’ll soon understand why so many people go absolutely crazy for this service too!

That’s all from me today Bee’s 🙂 thank you for stopping by!

Queen Bee – aka Clair

Change Is Good | Bizzebee

Change Is Good

  • March 11 , 2014

Afternoon Everyone,

Firstly, my apologies for missing our regular Monday post yesterday, but there have been a few things happening in our Bee HQ which meant we wasn’t able to hit our schedule yesterday.

Today’s post, you will be pleased to know, is going to be more informational, and explaining some changes that we are making with both Bizzebee the blog and also The Hive.

Change Is Good Change Is Good | Bizzebee

I’ll start by letting you know that the team is changing dynamic, and we are moving from a 6 to a 5, but for the short term you will only be seeing updates and posts from just 4 of the team. Sometimes, external factors in the real world need to take precedent, which is what has been happening for some of our team at Bizzebee. However, rest assured we are as dedicated to our readers and followers as always, and will continue to over deliver on our content, information and training.

With that change in mind, we have decided to alter the weekly posting schedule from Mon | Weds | Friday down to Tues | Thurs of each week (hence this Tuesday slot filled by yours truly) – We tossed about the idea of keeping the 3 x a week posts, but moving forwards we need to focus our attentions in slightly different areas to fit the business needs to take this project to the next level.

Alongside that, our weekly round up, which features the best of the web in 5 posts is being moved to a monthly round up (so the competition is fierce!!!) but whilst we are in a transitional period, this is going to be put on hold (it doesn’t mean we won’t share posts across our social channels we read and like, because we will do)

Lastly, but by no means least, We’re changing the concept of “The Hive” – we all spend a lot of time online, talking to people and seeing whats going on, and it’s become apparent that as a team we can cover pretty much everything and help you all in so many ways, but we might not have been presenting it in the right format with the Hive.

So, we are going to put together individual courses and learning that we will be advertising and selling within The Hive – so effectively we are turning it into a market place for our products, and rather than offering the one product with a membership site, we will be offering several which you can pick and choose from dependant upon your needs, which in some cases will be free training, and some will be a one time payment (rather than a monthly membership subscription)

Some of the areas we will be covering will be

  • WordPress
  • SEO
  • Web Design
  • Social Media
  • Graphics
  • Email Marketing
  • Content Creation & Blogging
  • Video Marketing
  • Product Creation
  • Affiliate Marketing

Of course this isn’t a finalised list, but just some of  areas in which we will be putting together online training courses that you will be able to enrol and learn about.

This means, we are giving ourselves more work to redevelop the Hive to fit this need, and of course we need to work on putting together course materials for you, so the change in blogging pattern and losing the weekly / monthly round up in the interim is to help us have more time to develop our product library for you.

Whilst we are waiting on this to happen, we will be releasing some of our training into other online market places, such as Udemy, and focusing on creating a great affiliate programme for anyone who wants to resell our products and earn commission for doing so!

All in all, a very exciting time for Bizzebee, and one that we are 100% committed too, and excited to deliver to you – change is always inevitable, especially in the online business world, but we believe in the power of our new HIVE market place, and the cogs are already in motion.

I shall leave you with a quote from the infamous Jim Rohn – which is kind of apt for this post today I believe

“If you don’t like where you are, move. You are not a tree”

Stay tuned, we’ve not even scratched the surface yet!

Queen Bee ….. Clair 🙂

Top 5 Tips To Increase Your LinkedIn Following | BizzeBee

Top 5 Tips To Increase Your LinkedIn Following

  • February 26 , 2014

LinkedIn is a powerful Social Media platform, and something up until now at Bizzebee we’ve not really spoken a great deal about. So I thought today would be a good opportunity to break that habit, and take a little look at how you can increase your LinkedIn page following.

Before I say anything, I want to share a video with you, Its from the official LinkedIn YouTube Channel, and talks about how to post an update within your company page on the site.

A Powerful tool don’t you agree?

So we need some quick fire ways to get people following your company on LinkedIn – Yes another site you can now engage with people away from your own name, under a company ‘hat’

As a business we should all want to increase our opportunities to network with clients, prospects, colleagues, peers, suppliers, and potential employees’ right?

LinkedIn gives us the opportunity to build a well-developed presence within its platform.

Did you know there are over 2 million businesses with a LinkedIn company page? Many of which are looking for new talent/opportunities.

As with every other social networking platform you MUST build up a network of followers, otherwise the content, updates etc. will not show up in newsfeeds and be seen by people. So like you make a commitment to turn up at Facebook and Twitter everyday …. Same goes for LinkedIn – the ability for the Viral Promotion is the exact same as most others, you can share content in your personal profiles which then becomes visible to all your friends / connections / followers.

It is NOT always about having masses of followers, I know I have previously said its more about quality than quantity, particularly if you are a business start-up / small business / SME. You want the most relevant people in your network following so they will share out to their subscribers.  If you build this steadily the numbers can and often do increase quickly!

Top 5 Tips to increase your company page following:

  1. Encourage existing employees, relatives and friends to link up with your company page share the status updates, and various links.
  2. Follow company pages of those in your industry, suppliers, experts, customers, prospects – most of the time people generally follow back – something about the courtesy of it, having good manners and generally being polite! You don’t need to stay pigeon holed in following your industry; you can follow those geographically near to you too even if they are in a completely separate niche / industry.
  3. Send An Announcement – Don’t be frightened to email your connections on LinkedIn.  ALWAYS provide 2/3 concrete benefits as to WHY someone should follow your page …. Remember people have the WII-FM mentality (What’s in it for me) so think ‘What will they get out of it?’ ‘How can it help them to be better at what they do?’
  4. Consider sending that same ‘Call to Action’ message to your existing database of customers & prospects, especially if you know they are using LinkedIn.
  5. Post a ‘Call to Action’ to follow your page within relevant LinkedIn groups

Remember! The more relevant a follower you have for your LinkedIn company page, the more opportunities you have to be seen and build that all important influence with your target markets!

There is a whole host of information and areas that we need to cover when it comes to LinkedIn and in due course you can expect to see a lot more discussions happening on our blog which focus on the different aspects of the platform.

Slow & Steady Wins The Race

  • February 5 , 2014

Good Morning to you all, your resident Queen Bee is back at the reigns today for another snippet of Social Media gold dust for you all to digest.

As a child, my teachers, my parents even my extended family members always used to tell me to slow down …. Life isn’t a race! (Still not sure I agree) However, the tale of the Hare & The Tortoise has always stuck with me, mainly because of the famous saying “Slow & Steady Wins The Race”

There are a lot of people in Social Media who know this statement to be very true (the entire team at Bizzebee being one collective), and personally the more I learn about how social media works through my different connections and people I work with the more I realise it really is true!

Have you ever felt like a kid in a candy shop?! I did when I was first introduced to all this Social Networking – and I’m pretty sure that I’m not the minority here either!

Wanting to be on EVERY social networking site, writing on walls of all your friends, tweeting your favourite people, tagging photos, post micro blogs, and follow pretty much everyone we come across.

In the short term this will work as a ‘strategy’ but to sustain for the long term is not so realistic. Especially if you are handling a lot of clients and that responsibility for them grows, or your own business online presence really does start to take off with social media.

It’s natural to want to take it all on, but it’s virtually impossible to do it without burning yourself out quickly *take my word for this PLEASE; I was one of those people who did it all and spent 15 hours a day on my laptop!!*

So what steps can you take to ensure you finish this ‘Race’ without running out of steam?

Slow & Steady Wins The Race | Bizzebee

I’ve got 5 steps I want to run through with you (imagine now I’m your pacemaker, remember we don’t want to run out of steam before finishing the race!)

Never Forget Your Goals – It is very easy to get distracted, especially by looking at what your competitors are doing. Some of these may have a bigger, louder presence than you – don’t let that put you off what you are doing. It’s ok for people to be doing different things. Stick to your goals and work harder and smarter to achieve them.

Evaluate & Re-Evaluate Your Social Media Platforms – It can be fun and exciting to put yourself or your client on every social platform, it is very unlikely that every platform is right for either you or your client. This is why you must monitor your audience interactions on the different social networks, so that you can decide which ones work best for you / your client, and then not waste time on the rest. Personally I think it’s best to focus on a couple of key platforms with success rather than be engaged in all and only giving 50%.

Quality not Quantity – Understanding this is probably one of the hardest steps you will take! Not all relationships online will be beneficial to you. You need to understand that some relationships WILL be one sided, some will take from you, without you getting anything in return. No matter how many followers, fans, friends or connections you have if they are not in line with your business philosophies, it may be time to get rid of them from your networks. It really is about quality tuned in connections rather than LOTS of uninterested ones!

Pace Yourself – Remember  ‘slow and steady wins the race’ Whether you are managing your business, starting your business or someone else’s, if you lose a few followers or ‘Likes’ because you are not always updating your twitter or posting content on your Facebook page, then they weren’t very loyal to begin with.  It is far better and important (in my opinion) to establish lasting relationships with fewer followers than superficial meaningless ones with lots of people.

Dust Yourself Off & Try Again – Not every Social Media campaign will pick up at the rate you expect it will. Not every tweet will get 50 retweets or 50 likes on Facebook. That is ok – don’t’ be afraid to try or experiment. If something does not work, then just try something different. People using social media have short attention spans, in 22 hours and 51 minutes they will have forgotten what you said anyway.

At the end of the day, social media is a means to an end, but if you can stick to your goals, work hard, pace yourself and not be afraid of failure there is a high chance you will succeed in this ‘marathon’ and you might even score a medal! (Metaphorically speaking)

As your online help to success, Bizzebee understand more than  most, often we are all juggling one or two different things at any one time – so I highly advise you to head on over to our Hive, and grab your 30 day FREE access to our training library 🙂

Until next time,

Queen Bee – over & out!

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