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Insignia IMC

What Was Facebook’s PR Firm Thinking? You Can’t Fight Google!

In case you hadn’t heard the news,  Facebook and Google are big time competitors.  As two of the internet’s biggest competitors go head to head in the social networking game, there’s been some foul play.  Facebook was recently busted by blogger Chris Soghoian for attempting an unethical smear campaign against Google Social Circle, a social network that Google attempted about 2 years ago that just never took off.  It all started when a public relations firm that Facebook hired (allegedly to spread the word about Google’s so-called disregard for privacy) wrote an article for blogger Soghoian and then offered to pen his name to the article and promised exposure on several large news and PR sites.  Soghoian, sensing something was up decided against offering up his name and instead published the emails between Facebook’s PR firm and himself online.

We’re wondering what this big time PR agency was thinking by asking Soghoian to do something like this.  Soghoian is huge advocate for internet privacy and cyber security, so of course he would be interested in news that Google knew they were violating user privacy, but at the same time, Soghoian is all about following the rules- he is an ethical kind of guy who would verify the facts and know where the information came from! We can’t figure out why they thought someone like Chris Soghoian would want to publish an article he didn’t write, which didn’t contain accurate facts, on behalf of a PR firm, who wouldn’t even disclose who their client was!

So Burson Marsteller has officially pointed the finger at Facebook claiming that Facebook made them do it.  We’re trying to figure out who exactly would believe them?  Facebook, along with Google, is one of the most powerful companies in the world.  Despite their competition with Google, Facebook could not have possibly conjured up the idea to release this story.  The guys at Facebook know that you don’t really want to mess with Google.  While they did hire Burson to represent them, we highly doubt they went in saying “Hey, go spread these lies about Google”.

The point being, you can’t beat the competition with black hat techniques.  Google is a powerful company, who’s dealt with far larger issues than what Burson Marsteller claims as privacy issues.  And now, we’re wondering where www.burson-marsteller.com will be showing up on a Google keyword search for PR firms.

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Why Your Small Business Needs A Facebook Landing Page

Well, we’ve been busy, but today wanted to spread the word on the value of a Facebook Landing Page, as sooooo many businesses don’t have one! Facebook may not be for everyone, but increasingly businesses are seeing the value of it as a marketing platform.

Your Facebook page speaks volumes about your business.  But, what exactly is it saying about your business?

Is it active?

Does it offer up information on what you do?

Does it show off your brand?

It should not only be a place for people to come to talk about your product/service, but it should be an additional place where they can learn about what you do and how you do it.  Now, we’re embarrassed to admit that Insignia’s Facebook page hasn’t been following those rules (Hey! We’ve been busy!) but we’re going to be practicing what we preach (and what we do for our clients!) from now on, so keep an eye on us!

The key to giving new visitors to your Facebook Page the best information about you is to have a landing page.  Your landing page can do a variety of things from showing off your new products, getting visitors to sign up for your newsletter, offering up another branding opportunity for your small business, and even showing off a video or pictures of your products.  With the use of Facebook iFrames, there is really no limit to what you can do with your Facebook page.  And- a good landing page will help your visitors convert to “Likes”- which is exactly what you need!

What would you want to show off on your Facebook landing page? Leave a comment here or head over to our Facebook page and tell us what you want out of a landing page for your small business!  And stay tuned for our list of top 10 ideas for marketing on Facebook coming next week!

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Cabernet and Twitter

Businesses, big and small, should be using Twitter.  There’s lots of reasons why, but one of the best I can think of is that it gives your followers a chance to connect with your company on a more intimate level.  Giving your customers a more personal side of you and your company can give you an opportunity to forge a connection between them and your business.  When they need something you sell, and they’ve formed a connection with you, you’ll be at the top of their list and they’ll more likely to refer you to friends and family.

Here’s a great example:  It’s no secret I love wine.  To me, there’s nothing like a good glass of cabernet or pinot noir at the end of the day.  I found a wine that I really love, but the problem is, that I can’t find it anywhere near my house. And today, when I started searching for it, I had a tough time finding any local shops who carried it, so I turned to Twitter.

I realized that the winery that makes the wine I love- NxNW (King Estate) is on Twitter.  And I was delighted to see that they were using it effectively- so I followed them and asked them for any local stores who carried the wine.  A few minutes later, they followed me back.  A few seconds later, I had a response from them and an email address that I was able to get a list of the local stores who carried their wine.  They did everything that they should do in my book- they followed back, they answered (really) promptly, and they showed personality and thanked me for complimenting their product. Just as they’ve “developed strong, creative relationships with growers and fellow winemakers”, they’re doing the same with their customers. And now I’m writing a blog post about them and maybe sending a few of you their way to get some wine!

Any business can work like this.  Using Twitter to effectively connect and engage your customers is time consuming, but well worth it- no matter what industry you’re in.  Now go follow @KingEstate on Twitter.  I’m headed out to get some cabernet!

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Your Twitter Feed Speaks Volumes About Your Business

Social media, and using it effectively in marketing is an art, not a science.  

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Save A Tree, Send An Email

Small businesses spending money on snail mail advertising may be wasting a lot of money.  Did you know that according to the EPA, more than 50% of direct mail is discarded?  And that’s without even being opened first!

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Beware- Everyone’s An Expert

Talking with a client this afternoon, I was inspired to write this post.  As I’ve mentioned on other places on the Insignia site, everyone seems to be an expert in SEO and Social Media Marketing.

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Restore Order

Start doing what you do best and stop wasting energy on things you’re not sure of.  One thing we’ve learned is the need to accept the things you cannot control and take control of the things you can change.

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5 Quick Tips For Small Businesses

Small businesses should definitely use social media- it’s what we call the best set of free marketing tools out there!  Here’s 5 Quick Tips every small business owner should know about using social media…

1. No one has time to sit on Twitter and Facebook all day.  Especially when you’re busy running your business.  We recommend using a tool like Hootsuite to help you manage the time you spend managing your social media networks.  With Hootsuite you can post to Facebook, Twitter, and many other social media networks- and schedule those posts ahead of time so you don’t have to sit there all day!

2. Engagement is the key to social media.  Showing new fans and followers that you’re interested in what they do, will get them interested in what you do.  Take time to mention them, thank new followers, ask questions, and compliment them. You’d be surprised how many will return the favor.

3.  Periodically search new people out on Twitter who are in your area- physically and mentally.   Follow those new people- chances are, they’ll follow you back.

4.  Set up an auto Direct Message for new followers.  Using a free service like SocialOomph.com, you can set up a new message to automatically be sent to new followers on Twitter.  You can invite them to visit your Facebook page, your website, or just say thanks for  following.

5. Don’t forget #FollowFriday!  Every Friday on Twitter is #FF or Follow Friday.  This is a day where you “mention” your favorite twitter followers.  Those that you mention, are likely to return the favor- and this is a great way to build new followers.

Stay tuned for more tips coming on the use of Social Media Marketing for small businesses.

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A Balancing Act

A successful small business is a balancing act.  Insignia is here to help you keep your balance.

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