Archive for the ‘Twitter’ Category

Six Stellar Twitter Tools and Reviews

Thursday, February 20th, 2014

Thanks to its brevity and informality, Twitter has become a phenomenally successful social network, particularly for sharing news and updates, with more than 560 million active users collectively posting 5,700 tweets every second.

Top Twitter Tools ReviewsWhile powerful on its own, the 140-character social chatter site is even more useful when extended with tools to accomplish all sorts of tasks, from analyzing current followers and finding new ones to identifying influencers and trends, creating custom Twitter feeds, monitoring brand conversations and more.

Check out the posts below to find reviews of more than two dozen helpful Twitter tools, from a handful of top social media experts.

Expert Reviews of Top Twitter Tools

8 Twitter Tools Every Content Marketer Should Have by Streetwise Media

Caroline LyleCaroline Lyle reviews her favorite Twitter tools, among them FollowerWonk which “offers valuable analysis of your followers, and more importantly, helps you find new ones,” and TweetBeep, a simple tool that “sends you an email every time your brand is mentioned” on Twitter.

3 Very Useful Twitter Hashtag Analytics Tools by Razor Social

Ian ClearyWriting that “Analyzing the activity around a hashtag on twitter can help you identify the influencers, find useful links, analyze trends and much more,” Ian Cleary reviews three hashtag analytics tools including Tweetbinder, which lets you “analyze a twitter chat to see who is engaged in the conversation, who is most influential, what tweets were shared, what links are shared” and more.

7 Free Tools to Find Twitter Influencers Who Interact with You by Small Business Trends

Ann SmartyFrequent best-of contributor Ann Smarty reviews more than half a dozen tools for identifying and engaging with influential Twitters who follow you, such as Who Tweeted Me, “a new tool from Hubspot that finds all people who tweeted your pages and sorts them by number of followers. You can thank them with one click as well.”

Find the RSS feed for any Twitter user with Twitter RSS (Update) by Social Media Slant

Cendrine MarrouatTwitter has killed off its RSS feeds, but Cendrine Marrouat recommends using the RSS 4 Twitter tool as an alternative. At last check, the site worked well for capturing individual Twitter feeds, but hashtag support was temporarily out of order.

5 Tools to Research the Demographics of Your Twitter Followers by Small Business Trends

Ann Smarty (again) reviews a handful of “great apps that will let you get the proper stats to start engaging your followers in a real and dynamic way,” such as Birdsong (“Do a quick analytics search of any social media profile and find out exactly what conversations your brand is generating”).

Twools: Social Media Unleashed by iag.me

Ian Anderson GrayA more powerful alternative to the issue of Twitter RSS feeds is Twools, a tools from Ian Anderson Gray. It allows you to create a number of Twitter feeds including your home timeline, any user timeline, mentions, favorites and more, and filter these by keyword, hashtag or screen name.

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29 (of the) Best Twitter Guides, Tips and Infographics of 2013

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

Twitter became a publicly traded company on November 7 and saw the price of its shares climb 73% on the first day of trading. It was the second-largest Internet IPO ever by an American company, trailing only Facebook.

Twitter Tweet Cheat SheetThe microblogging service now has more than 600 million registered users (adding 135,000 each day), with more than 100 million active every month. There are 9,100 tweets posted per second; one billion tweets every five days.

Does anyone still think Twitter is for the birds?

With all that activity, it’s imperative that marketers and PR professionals use the platform effectively as part of an overall web presence optimization strategy. What are the best ways to drive website or blog traffic with Twitter? To grow your company’s Twitter following? To generate more engagement and retweets? Utilize Twitter advertising? Get the most out of Twitter search?

Find the answers to those questions and many more here in more than two dozen of the best Twitter guides, tips and helpful infographics of the past year.

Twitter Guides and Tips

10 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your B2B Website with Twitter Influencers by Social Media B2B

Krista BunstoekNoting that “Influence marketing is getting your industry social influencers to share your content to their Twitter followers (and) 92% of us trust peer recommendations for product choices and brand preferences,” Krista Bunskoek presents 10 ideas for getting the attention of influential Twitterers, from using RTs, @ mentions and favorites to writing about influencers on your blog (hmm, kind of like in this post).

#TwitterTips: 5 steps for a successful 140-character conversation on Twitter by MarketingSherpa

Rachel KatzRachel Katz offers “five tips you can use to create engaging conversations on Twitter,” from having a purpose (“It’s good practice to begin with a purpose for each piece of content shared on social media platforms. Because Twitter is limited by so few characters, this especially holds true. Every tweet should have a purpose”) to having fun.

8 Places You’re Guaranteed to Find Great Content to Tweet by HubSpot

Shannon JohnsonShannon Johnson presents an excellent collection of resources to help curate content for Twitter (or other uses), ranging from Feedly (which lets you follow pretty much anything—blogs, #topics, vimdeo and YouTube channels, tumblrs, comics, recipes, news sites, podcasts, magazines and more) to StumbleUpon. A worthy compilation, though it’s hard to believe Scoop.it didn’t make the list.

A Simple Tip to Get a Huge Increase in Engagement on Twitter by jeffbullas.com

Jeff BullasNoting that tweets with images generate 18% more clicks and 150% more click-throughs than those without, Jeff Bullas recommends adding images to tweets (using pic.Twitter.com to take advantage of the image preview feature) and showcases four examples of brands using making good use of this tactic.

16 Ridiculously Easy Ways To Increase Retweets by Heidi Cohen

Heidi CohenHeidi Cohen breaks down Twitter research from HubSpot’s Dan Zarrella into 16 actionable tips for getting more retweets, such as using one (but never more than three) hashtags in tweets; sharing photos (natively or with Twitpic, but not with Instagram); and using the word “please” in calls to action (but not the word “visit”).

5 Ways B2B Companies Can Generate Leads on Twitter by Social Media B2B

Carolyn HughesCarolyn Hughes suggests five ways to generate B2B sales leads on Twitter, including sharing content to drive website traffic and using Twitter to create “warm” leads: “Your new business development manager could sit down and plow through a lot of cold calls with relevant businesses but this is really a shot in the dark. However, if you start connecting with other businesses and other business people through Twitter, this is a friendly way to introduce your company and start to form a relationship.”

10 Smart Tips for Creating, Marketing and Sharing Content on Twitter by jeffbullas.com

Jeff Bullas (again) explains the three key elements of a tweet, then offers 10 tips for sharing content that resonates on Twitter, from writing a great headline and applying hashtags (judiciously) through targeting influencers and using “action words: more verbs, fewer nouns.”

6 Ways to Use Embedded Tweets to Help Your Business by Social Media Examiner

Kristi HinesThe erudite and prolific Kristi Hines presents “six ways to use embedded tweets to enhance your content, drive engagement and establish social proof,” from reputation building with customer testimonials to building website traffic with a tweet chat to promoting upcoming events.

40 useful things you can share on Twitter besides blog posts by AdamVincenzini[dot]com

Adam VincenziniIt seems nearly everyone shares blog posts on Twitter. Here, Adam Vincenzini lists more than three dozen alternative types of content to share, from new apps or tools to a Twitter chat transcript, YouTube video, event, photo, or helpful tip.

Seven Tips for Finding Killer Twitter Content by Ishmael’s Corner

Lou HoffmanWriting that “It takes work to dig out fresh content that hasn’t already been trampled by the masses like the stories from Mashable that always trigger a zillion social shares,” Lou Hoffman offers seven tips for finding unique content to tweet including corporate websites, journalists’ personal blogs, and publications that are “off the beaten path.”

The 10 most clickable Twitter headlines by Ragan’s PR Daily

Allison StaddAllison Stadd lists the “10 most clickable Twitter headlines that will engage your followers, draw traffic to your blog or website and help differentiate your Twitter account,” such as calls to action, how-to’s, the word “infographic,” and, not surprising, top 10 lists.

4 Ways To Get Better Engagement on Twitter by Binkd

Misty McPaddenMisty McPadden looks at four common objectives for business Twitter accounts, and provides helpful tips for achieving each goal. For example, tips for generating more retweets include carefully curating tweets of third-party content, scheduling tweets, leaving enough unused characters for others to easily retweet you.

Tweet tweet – 20 top tips for businesses by Entanet Newsletter

Discover both interesting Twitter facts (such as that each global Fortune 100 company is mentioned, on average, nearly 60,000 times per month on Twitter) and practical tips (among them: “Monitor the best times to tweet using the likes of tweriod.com“) in this useful post.

The State of Twitter, 2013 by Margie’s Moments of Tiyoweh

Margie ClaymanMargie Clayman responds to 10 not-uncommon questions and observations about Twitter, ranging from common practices, tools and etiquette to queries like ““Some celebs are subscribing to the Chris Brogan method of unfollowing most of their followers. Why?”

Twitter Tips for Beginners

Twitter Best Practices: 11+ Tips for Tweeting Well by Social Media Today

Courtney HuntCourtney Hunt provides a guide which “offers a set of Twitter best practices that helps people maximize their ability to maintain a strong signal/noise ratio and avoid making mistakes that can hurt their individual professional and/or organizational brands,” emphasizing the importance of listening, quality and timing among other characteristics.

The 2013 Twitter Marketing Guide by KISSmetrics
*****5 STARS

Kristi Hines (again) here provides an outstanding beginner’s guide to Twitter (that even veteran tweeters may want to skim) covering everything from initial profile setup and optimization through planning a content strategy, building an audience, advertising on Twitter, and becoming familiar with key Twitter tools.

15 Steps To legitimately Gain More Twitter Followers by LinksToWeb

Vishnu AniyanThough the English is a bit rough, the ideas shared here by Vishnu Aniyan for growing a Twitter following are solid, from creating an interesting Twitter bio, background and custom About page to being generous in linking and retweeting others, and practicing “strategic, not aggressive, following.”

Twitter 101 in 21 Tweets [SLIDESHARE] by Social Media Today

Barry FeldmanBarry Feldman cleverly provides a helpful guide for Twitter newbies in the form of 21 tweets that explain what Twitter is, how it works, how to use hashtags, build a following, find useful Twitter apps, generate retweets and more.

Advanced Twitter Tips

Custom Timelines – Curation a la Twitter by Relevanza

Birgit Pauli-HaackBirgit Pauli-Haack explains how to use Tweetdeck to create and publish custom Twitter timelines to curate content; for example, for filtering out the best event-related tweets or a selection of tweets from a Twitter chat.

7 Big, Recent Twitter Changes you Should Know About to Optimize Your Tweeting by Buffer

Belle Beth CooperBelle Beth Cooper reports on several key enhancements made to Twitter in late 2012 that not all Twitterers may be aware of, such as Twitter Alerts for emergencies and breaking news, updates for Android and iOS7, and yet another new location for the DM feature.

14 Twitter Tips and Tricks for Power Users by Mashable

Matt PetronzioMatt Petronzio shares more than a dozen tips on how to do things you may not have known you could do with Twitter, such as getting tailored trends (“You can change the list to reflect trends in your own country or select cities, worldwide and even trends tailored to your interests and those you follow”), using keyboard shortcuts, and creating user widgets (embeddable code for specific Twitter feeds).

Twitter Advertising Tips

Lead Generation Card: Now available to all advertisers, with new features by Twitter Advertising Blog

Tarun JainTarun Jain explains how Twitter advertisers can use Lead Generation Cards, and highlights recently added features including new layouts, simpler setup and lead collection (including options to load incoming leads directly into a CRM system), and multi-language support.

Step-by-Step Guide for Twitter Ads to Promote Your Business by Kuno Creative

Deepak GuptaNoting that “Twitter provides its users a customized marketing strategy where they can promote events and sales, gain brand awareness among audiences not currently aware of them and even gain new followers they can advertise to in the future,” Deepak Gupta steps through the different advertising options available on the platform and how to set up Twitter ads.

Tweet tips: Most effective calls to action on Twitter by Twitter Advertising Blog

Jenni RomanekJennifer Romanek outlines four of the most effective calls to action on Twitter, starting with asking for a download:”Promoted Tweets in timelines that explicitly ask people to download accompanied by a link increase URL clicks by an average of 13%. Promoted Tweets in search that feature this call to action also increase clicks by an average of 11%.”

Twitter Search Tips

Twitter Search 101 – How To Search by More in Media

Dorien Morin-van DamDorien Morin-van Dam passes along three helpful tips for advanced searching on Twitter. My favorite: “Plug the URL of your latest article (or blog post) into the search bar” on Twitter, which enables you to find all shares of that content, regardless of URL shortener or surrounding text used.

How Marketers Can Track Any Link Shared By Anyone On Twitter by All Twitter

Shea BennettShea Bennett delves into specific uses of Twitter search to track shares of any link on Twitter, and narrow these searches with advanced search operators to find brand, product, blog, competitor and other types of shared URLs.

Best Twitter Infographics

How To Grow Your Twitter Audience by twiends

How to grow your Twitter followingThis creative and distinctively designed infographic illustrates a broad array of tactics for gaining new Twitter followers, from “things you can do online” (e.g., guest blogging, webinars, signing up for Twitter directories) through real-world activities, tweeting and retweeting, and other activities (such as including your Twitter handle in print ads and QR codes).

Twitter: Tweet Cheat Sheet [#Infographic] by Stormnet Media Blitz

Twitter Tweet Cheat SheetDid you know that Twitter engagement rates for (primarily consumer) brands are 17% higher on Saturday and Sunday, yet only 19% of brand tweets go out on weekends? Or that tweets with image links generate twice the engagement rate of tweets without links? Discover lots more interesting Twitter facts and stats in this infographic.

Blueprint For Building The Perfect Tweet [INFOGRAPHIC] by All Twitter

How to build the perfect tweetMary C. Long shares a blueprint-style infographic with tips for better tweeting, such as “using consistent excellence to stand out from the crowd,” “selling the headline in a non-salesy way,” and “using correct (and acceptable) punctuation.”

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The Top #Nifty50 Men Writers on Twitter for 2013

Tuesday, November 5th, 2013

By Cheryl Burgess, originally published on the Blue Focus Marketing Blog

NiftyFifty_2013_Writers_Images_Men_FINAL_RD_201200822

In 2011, I teamed up with Tom Pick (@TomPick) and his Webbiquity blog to unveil the first annual #Nifty50 Awards. Our goal in designing these awards was to honor the top 50 women and top 50 men in social media. In that first year, we cast a wide net, honoring those whom we felt actively engaged as brand ambassadors on Twitter day in day out, exchanging valuable information, and just generally being good, helpful people. Last year, we narrowed our focus to honor the top 50 men and top 50 women engaging on Twitter on behalf of the tech sector.

This year, we wanted to target a specific group once again, and so we agreed to honor the top bloggers, authors, PR specialists, and journalists on Twitter. After reviewing all of your wonderful nominations over the summer, it’s now time to unveil the winners!

Now that Tom and I have compiled our lists, the word that keeps popping into my head is “community.” This isn’t just a list of 50 men who work in isolation; these are people who share strong social bonds with each other, who would be just as happy to celebrate the success of one of their colleagues as they would be for themselves. These thought leaders understand that the greatest product of a good idea is more good ideas, and it’s great to see that their generosity and thought leadership in online communities is being recognized.

I’m happy to say that I have had the privilege of experiencing this generosity firsthand. As we were writing our book The Social Employee: How Great Companies Make Social Media Work – Success Lessons from IBM, AT&T, Dell, Cisco, Southwest Airlines, Adobe, and Domo on building a Social Culture (McGraw-Hill, August 2013) (@SocialEmployee) late last year and early this year, we were honored to receive excellent contributions from people like Vala Afshar (@ValaAfshar), David Armano, (@Armano) David C. Edelman (@DavidEdelman), and Kevin Randall (@kevinbrandall) —just to name a few. These wonderful wordsmiths truly enlivened our own content, and we couldn’t be happier to see them make this list.

So without further ado, here are the 2013 #Nifty50 Men! Feel free to celebrate their achievement by dropping them a line on Twitter, and don’t forget to check out the Webbiquity blog for the 2013 #Nifty50 Women!

Vala Afshar @ValaAfshar

Vala Afshar

David Armano @armano

David Armano

Jonathan Becher @jbecher

Jonathan Becher

Sander Biehn @sanderbiehn

Sander Biehn

Michael Brenner @BrennerMichael

Michael Brenner

David Brier @davidbrier

David Brier

Michael Brito @Britopian

Michael Brito

Terry Brock @TerryBrock

Terry Brock @TerryBrock

Mark Burgess @mnburgess

Mark Burgess

Chris Carragher @cjcarragher

Chris_Carragher_N

Dan Cristo @dancristo

Dan Cristo

Dino Dogan @dinodogan

Dino Dogan

Mike Edelhart @MikeEdelhart

Mike Edelhart

David Edelman @davidedelman

David Edelman

Mark Fidelman @markfidelman

Mark Fidelman

Sam Fiorella @samfiorella

Sam Fiorella

Jez Frampton @jezframpton

Jez Frampton

Nis Frome @nisfrome

Nis Frome

Sean Gardner @2morrowknight

Sean Gardner

Glen Gilmore @GlenGilmore

Glen Gilmore

Andrew Grill @AndrewGrill

Andrew Grill

John Hagel @jhagel

John Hagel

Arik Hanson @arikhanson

Arik Hanson

Kent Huffman @KentHuffman

Kent Huffman

John L. Kennedy @johnlkennedy

nifty50_Kennedy.fw

Jure Klepic @jkcallas

Jure Kelpic

Bryan Kramer @bryankramer

Bryan Kramer

Simon Mainwaring @simonmainwaring

Simon Mainwaring

TJ McCue @TJMcCue

Nifty50 TJ McCue.fw

Billy Mitchell @billymitchell1

Billy Mitchell

Jacob Morgan @jacobm

Jacob Morgan

Tom Peters @tom_peters

Tom Peters

Howard Pyle @howardpyle

Howard Pyle

Erik Qualman @equalman

Eric Qualman

Ajay Ramachandran @ajay

Ajay Ramachandran

Andreas Ramos @Andreas_Ramos

Andreas Ramos

Kevin Randall @KevinBrandall

Kevin Randall

Ron Ricci @RonRicciCisco

Ron Ricci

Tony Riches @tonyriches

Tony Riches

Alex Romanovich @alexromanovich

Alex Romanovich

Ted Rubin @TedRubin

Ted Rubin

Neal Schaffer @NealSchaffer

Neal Schaffer

Dan Schawbel @DanSchawbel

Dan Schwbel

Gary Schirr @ProfessorGary

Gary Schirr

Brian Slattery @BrianSlatts

BrianSlatts.fw

Andy Smith @kabbenbock

Andy Smith

Brian Solis @briansolis

Brian Solis

Bill Strawderman @marketingbard

Bill Strawderman

Todd Wilms @toddmwilms

Todd Wilms

Tony Zambito @TonyZambito

Tony Zambito

Nifty50_2013_Writers_Images_WOMEN_FINAL_RD_FINAL_2012822

Cheryl Burgess (@ckburgess) CEO and CMO of Blue Focus Marketing, author of The Social Employee – How Great Companies Make Social Media Work, published by McGraw-Hill, in summer 2013.  She is a social branding consultant with expertise in social business and social media. She is an expert blogger for AT&T Networking Exchange on social media. Proud to be an invited contributor to the Wharton FOA’s Advertising 2020 Project. Active Member of the Wharton Advertising 2020 Contributor Community.

She was awarded Wharton Future of Advertising’s MVP and praised as a “brilliant strategic thinker in the social media space.” Huffington Post honored her as one of 40 global women “Passionistas” for her “great business expertise and timeless blog posts.”  Also,  Huffington Post “Top 100 Business, Leadership and Technology Twitter Accounts You Must Follow.”

She was featured in Fast Company and Business Insider.  Invited speaker on “Expanding Your Social Influence” at the AT&T Networking Leaders Academy Annual Conference. She is a four-time winner of the Twitter Shorty Award in Marketing [The New York Times hails this as the Oscar of Twitter], named Top 75 Twitter Women, 2012 Top 100 Branding Experts on Twitter, and a 100 Top Marketer on Twitter.  Cheryl is a syndicated blogger. She is the co-founder of #Nifty50 Top Twitter Women and #Nifty50 Top Twitter Men. Google+

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The Top #Nifty50 Women Writers on Twitter for 2013

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Each year, the #Nifty50 awards honor 50 men and 50 women who actively engage on Twitter. 2011 was the inaugural year. In 2012, the #Nifty50 recognized the top men and women on Twitter in the technology realm.

The #Nifty50 Women Writers on Twitter for 2013The purpose of the award is to acknowledge the contributions of honorees to their fields, as well as their level of engagement on Twitter; to encourage interaction with these leaders; and to expand social networks. When the timing is right, the #Nifty50 will be expanded to include an element of social good—the #Nifty50 Kids project, which will provide access to advanced technologies for low-income children.

This year’s #Nifty50 highlights men and women who write—more specifically, who regularly produce some form of business-related online content (blog posts, news articles, videos, infographics, etc.)—and who actively engage on Twitter. The honorees include both full-time (e.g., journalists, authors, or PR professionals) and part-time writers (e.g., bloggers).

Since the first awards, the #Nifty50 hashtag has been tweeted and retweeted nearly 7,000 times, with a total exposure of more than 50 million people, according to Topsy. The #Nifty50 was also featured in the new book by Mark (@mnburgess) and Cheryl Burgess (@ckburgess), The Social Employee (McGraw-Hill, August 2013) How Great Companies Make Social Media Work – Success Lessons from IBM, AT&T, Dell, Cisco, Southwest Airlines, Adobe, and Domo on building a social culture.

For 2013, we’re pleased to honor 50 women (below) and 50 men (in a post on the Blue Focus Marketing Blog) who are both outstanding writers and content producers and active social media connectors and engagers. Beyond their professional lives, the interests of these women range from the fairly conventional (travel, food, wine, health, fashion, family) to the unexpected (Star Wars, Milk Duds, beer, Swedish fish).

We’re proud to acknowledge these 50 women from 48 different organizations as the top #Nifty50 women writers on Twitter for 2013. You can find and subscribe to or follow the entire list on Twitter here.

(Editor’s note: Though I’d be proud to claim her as a member of my extended clan, I’m fairly certain that Marissa Pick and I have no familial relationship.)

Jennifer Aaker
@Aaker

Jennifer Aaker

 

Diana Adams
@adamsconsulting

Diana Adams

 

Ardath Albee
@ardath421

Ardath Albee

 

Kare Anderson
@kareanderson

Kare Anderson

 

Judy Bellem
@JudyBellem

Judy Bellem

 

Meghan M. Biro
@MeghanMBiro

Meghan M. Biro

 

Susan Borst
@susanborst

Susan Borst

 

Lisa Buyer
@lisabuyer

Lisa Buyer

 

Sandy Carter
@sandy_carter

Sandy Carter

 

Karima-Catherine
@karimacatherine

Karmia-Catherine

 

Ann Charles
@annmcharles

Ann Charles

 

Dorie Clark
@dorieclark

Dorie Clark

 

Heidi Cohen
@heidicohen

Heidi Cohen

 

Julie Cottineau
@JCottin

Julie Cottineau

 

Gini Dietrich
@ginidietrich

Gini Dietrich

 

Jenna Dobkin
@JennaSD

Jenna Dobkin

 

Esther Dyson
@edyson

Esther Dyson

 

Marni Edelhart
@CarpeDiFemme

Marni Edelhart

 

Kristi Eells
@Kristi_Eells

Kristi Eells

 

Laurie Friedman
@lauriefriedman

Laurie Friedman

 

Anne Deeter Gallaher
@AnneDGallaher

Anne Deeter Gallaher

 

Ann Handley
@annhandley

Ann Handley

 

Catherine Hays
@catharinehays

Catherine Hays

 

Elizabeth Hitchcock
@ElizHitchcock

Elizabeth Hitchcock

 

Amy Howell
@HowellMarketing

Amy Howell

 

Martine Hunter
@martinehunter

Martine Hunter

 

Jennifer Kane
@JenKaneCo

Jennifer Kane

 

Julie Kehoe
@juliekehoe

Julie Kehoe

 

Katrina Klier
@KatrinaKlier

Katrina Klier

 

Shelly Kramer
@shellykramer

Shelly Kramer

 

Megan Leap
@MeganLeap

Megan Leap

 

Heather Lloyd-Martin
@heatherlloyd

Heather Lloyd-Martin

 

Margaret Molloy
@MargaretMolloy

Margaret Molloy

 

Wendy Marx
@wendymarx

Wendy Marx

 

Lori Moreno
@LoriMoreno

Lori Moreno

 

Marissa Pick
@marissapick

Marissa Pick

 

Maria Poveromo
@mariapoveromo

Maria Poveromo

 

Tonia Ries
@tonia_ries

Tonia Ries

 

Jill Rowley
@jill_rowley

Jill Rowley

 

Lori Ruff
@LoriRuff

Lori Ruff

 

Angie Schottmuller
@aschottmuller

Angie Schottmuller

 

Esta H. Singer
@sheconsulting

Esta H. Singer

 

Mari Smith
@marismith

Mari Smith

 

Michele Smorgon
@maxOz

Michele Smorgon

 

Elizabeth Sosnow
@elizabethsosnow

Elizabeth Sosnow

 

Jayme Soulati
@Soulati

Jayme Soulati

 

Ann Tran
@AnnTran_

Ann Tran

 

Casie Vogel
@casievogel

Casie Vogel

 

Deborah Weinstein
@DebWeinstein

Deb Weinstein

 

Patricia Wilson
@brandcottage

Patricia Wilson

 

Again, you can find and follow the entire 2013 #Nifty50 Twitter women’s list here.

 

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What are the Best Social Networks for B2B Marketing? (Research)

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

There’s no question that B2B marketers have embraced social media. According to recent research, more than 80% of b2b marketers now use the “big 3″ social networks—LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook—to distribute content.

But are these efforts paying off in terms of website traffic and leads? And if so, which social networks are most productive?

The short answers are “yes” and “LinkedIn and Twitter.” The longer answer, detailed below, is somewhat more nuanced.

There’s an old church skit called “No Deposit, No Return” which conveys the message that the results you can expect to achieve from any particular effort are generally commensurate with the effort that you put into it. In terms of B2B social media, almost any social network on which your prospective buyers are present can produce results; but some are clearly better than others, and regardless of the site, the level of results will reflect the efforts expended there on building and engaging with your following.

The figures here are based on a small, but presumably representative sample of 10 B2B technology websites. The overall results—that social media drives 1.1% of B2B commercial website traffic and 7% of leads—correlate fairly well with the 1.9% and 5% figures, respectively, reported by eMarketer earlier this year.

How much traffic do social networks drive to B2B websites?

That depends on what type of B2B website one is referring to. We looked at three different types of sites: pure B2B blogs, pure commercial sites, and “hybrid” sites that combined a blog with commercial content. The level of traffic driven by social media varies widely across these different site types. Across these sites, social media accounted for roughly 5% of traffic on average, compared to 39% from organic search, as reported in a previous study.

Not surprisingly, social media drives a much larger proportion of traffic to blogs (nearly 17%) than to purely commercial B2B websites (1.1%). The “most social” blog in this group derived nearly 24% of it’s total visits from social; the highest figure for a commercial site was just 3.2%.

Also likely not a surprise, the “big 3″ social networks drove a disproportionately large share of all social traffic. Smaller social networks and content curation sites like Scoop.it and StumbleUpon are somewhat effective for driving blog or hybrid site traffic, but essentially worthless for commercial sites.

Share of B2B site traffic from social media by site type

Which social media sites drive the most B2B website traffic?

Drilling down into the social traffic segment specifically, the dominance of the big 3 is even more evident, as these sites combined account for 90% of all social traffic. LinkedIn alone accounts for more than half of all social B2B website visits,  and Twitter nearly a third.

What is perhaps surprising though is that more than 20 different social sites drove at least some B2B website visits. This suggests that while few B2B marketers can afford to spread their efforts (effectively, at least) too broadly across social networks, some experimentation at the least is in order well beyond the big 3.

B2B website visits by social network

Which social sites are most effective for B2B lead generation?

While this data set was too limited to supply precise figures, in general LinkedIn produced the largest number of leads across sites, followed by Twitter, with Facebook and YouTube also in the mix.

However, for commercial B2B sites that maintained separate blogs, categorizing blog leads as “social” made the figures significant. Across these sites, social media (blogs—the company’s own and others—plus social networks) accounted on average for 7% of all leads. And while the figures varied considerably among sites, blog-driven traffic generally converted at significantly higher rates than visits from all other sources as a group.

The bottom line:

  • • B2B marketers first need to focus social presence efforts on LinkedIn and Twitter.
  • • Its vital to maintain a presence on Facebook just due to the size of the network; results are generally less than with other sites, though there are B2B Facebook success stories out there.
  • • Finally, experiment selectively with other social sites–but don’t spread efforts too thinly.

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