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It Is Not All About The Numbers In Influencer Marketing

By Cheval John

November 17th, 2017

Couple of weeks ago, I received an e-mail from someone who claimed they could increase my instagram followers by 27%.

This is the start of the e-mail

Greetings sir,

I see you’ve been posting on social media again. Your posts keep appearing on my timeline, but they never seem to have that many likes and shares.

I used to be in the same boat too. So did these people.

This person then showed me instagram accounts of people who had an average of 1.77 million followers.

The message continues:

We all have something in common. We all managed to increase how many followers we have just by following an easy to use system.

I developed this system when I did not seem to be getting as much engagement as I thought my posts deserved and now I want to share it with you.

Using my system, you can increase your followers to over 4,300 almost overnight.

After reading this e-mail, I had to laugh.

The question is why would someone send out e-mails claiming to increase instagram followers overnight.

The answers are revealed in these statistics:

59% of micro-influencers think Instagram is the most effective social media platform to engage their target audience-Veloce Network

57% of companies in the fashion and beauty industry use influencer marketing in their marketing strategy-Veloce Network

92% of consumers trust recommendations from peers on social media above all other forms of advertising-Veloce Network

84% of companies plan on working with a social media star in the next year-Influencer Marketing Hub

67% of marketers will increase influencer marketing budget over the next year-Marketing Profs

Infuencer Marketing In Instagram Alone Is A One Billion Dollar Industry-MediaKix

With all of that money on the table, many are trying to become an instagram influencer.

Some are willing to cheat their way to success either by buying followers, joining pods or using bots.

Sarah Moore, founder of Eleven Lights Media, explains in this video about instagram pods and why she totally hates it.

The only way I can see pods as a good thing is if people are using them to collaborate and share their ideas within the community.

Other than that, I am not a fan of instagram pods

Bots are a totally different beast.

Third party companies created these bots particularly for people to buy for their instagram accounts.

They would set up these bots to comment or like a post for a certain amount of time to make it look like they are getting engagement on their instagram accounts.

When people see the supposed engagement from the bots, they will think this person or brand is an influencer.

Those who used these bots to build their account will be able to pitch to these companies on why they should work with them.

My guess is they will use these same bots to grow their clients account.

The problem is they are not growing their audience organically and it goes against instagram’s terms of use.

This is why instagram is on the offensive of shutting down third party services that provide bots.

A person or brand will never beat instagram with bots or pods because they are changing their algorithms constantly

Just because you do not have a 100,000-1,000,000 followers does not mean you are not an influencer.

If you have the right people following you, then you are an influencer because they know you bring value to them.

So continue to listen to what your audience are chatting about and interact with them.

They will give you ideas of what type of content you need to provide.

When you provide the content that solves their pain points, they will naturally share it and over the long haul, you will grow your following organically.

You can leave your comment below if you agree or disagree with this post

Dr. Karen Freberg, Associate Professor at University of Louisville

By Cheval John

November 15th, 2017

Today’s episode features Dr. Karen Freberg, associate professor at the University of Louisville.

She is one of the most innovative professors in higher education due to being a pioneer in the teaching of social media.

Dr. Freberg has spoken at conferences around the world.

She has build her online presence via social media which gave her insights into preparing her students for the real world.

Her #freberg17 class created and implemented a social media marketing plan for the Louisville Bats.

This episode was recorded on Facebook Live via Blue Jeans Network.

Snippet on Vallano Media TV

Full episode on BlogTalkRadio

Website: www.karenfreberg.com

Twitter: @kfreberg

Quotes from Dr. Karen Freberg on:

Being Active On Social Media

I feel like social media is a passion of mine and I absolutely love it.

I also feel like for college students, if I am asking them to do certain strategies on social media, I have to do them as well just to kind of show them like, “okay, here’s kind of the strategies that I have been able to learn through the process.

I feel like instead of being like a top-down model for my classes, I am more of a participant too.

So there is definitely strategies I can definitely articulate, share and teach my students.

I am constantly learning each and everyday new things, new trends, new ways of approaching certain softwares for social media.

ON CREATING THE SOCIAL MEDIA COMMUNITY PROFESSORS FACEBOOK GROUP

I would say it actually came from a research project I was working on this past year.

I was talking to one professor who was teaching social media at a university in Utah.

He was talking about how he really wish there was a place where professors who were teaching social media could come together and share some ideas.

He said, “I go to these other conferences, but they are really just advertising conferences or public relations conferences.”

“There was really no central place where we could all share our thoughts on certain trends in social or what are things that we are facing in terms of expectations from employers about our students skills and books we were using to teach social media.”

So I got the idea of creating a group where we just came together and share our ideas.

The group started last year in October and we have over 360 members (my update: the group is now over 450 members) from around the world.

We are all struggling with some of the same questions and same concepts.

We talked earlier before the show about this perception of professors who teach social media.

We get criticized all the time with “We don’t know what we are talking about, higher education is a waste of time. We are not ahead of the trends or we don’t know what we are doing.”

So it is nice to come together as a group and say, “Okay, here’s what we are doing. Here’s how we are going to show future employers our students are getting the necessary skills and education.”

It is a very great community and I have been really happy to see everyone sharing their ideas.

I also wanted to create a place I wish I had when I started out as a professor.

ON COVERING THE BEHIND THE SCENES OF COLLEGE GAMEDAY IN LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY

I got approached from Front Office Sports about taking over their instagram account for college gameday.

I’m like, “Great, this is so exciting”

I realized, “Oh, I have to do what I have been preaching to my students and making sure I was basically following the same guidelines and best practices.

It was a lot of fun.

It was a different mindset where you have to think about what would the audience for front office sports want to see.

I had a lot of people that were really excited to see the clemson social media team.

So I made sure I got some coverage there and then the behind the scenes of college gameday.

Always make sure you have extra battery backs for your phone.

You can leave your comments below if you like or disliked this post

Give Your Audience Access To Your Creative Process

By Cheval John

Today’s post is a case study of former ABBA member, Anni-Frid Lyngstad’s, “Frida”, solo album, “Something Going On” and what we as entrepreneurs can learn.

ABBA was on top of the charts consistently during their time together (Agnetha Faltskog was married to Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson was married to Frida prior to the group forming of course).

Many were drawn to their acapella sound.

The success of the band led to the strain on their marriages.

Frida wanted to do a solo English album which would have a different sound from ABBA.

So she choose Phil Collins, who is a drummer as well, to produce her first solo english album.

She listened to Collins’ first solo album “Face Value” for eight months.

The record label, Polar Music, sent out messages to major publishers around the world about Frida’s solo project.

In an overwhelming answer, they got 500 songs.

They then listened to all of them and choose the eleven songs for her album.

Collins and the session players flew into Stockholm and recorded the album tracks.

They added the trumpets from Earth, Wind and Fire’s Phenix Horns to some of the tracks.

They also added the orchestra sound recorded at Air Studios in London, England.

It took them a month and a half to put the album together.

As a result, “Something Going On” was a huge hit worldwide.

The single,”I Know There’s Something Going On” hit number one in Switzerland, Belgium, Costa Rica and France.

It was also number fourteen on the Billboard 100 and became one of the best selling singles in the United States in 1983.

Before the advent of social media, publicists would book musicians on major media leading up to the launch of their album because those outlets have the largest audience.

What made Frida’s success different?

She gave Sveriges Television (SVT), a national Swedish broadcaster, access to the making from start to finish of the album, “Something Going On.”

SVT edited the recordings to make it into a one-hour television special.

It is safe to say Frida understood her audience very well.

She knew it was history in the making because she was venturing into the unknown from her association with ABBA.

That is why it is important to showcase the behind the scenes of your business and share the “secrets” to your success.

It is not like someone will go and knock you out of business due to sharing your secrets.

Your audience will appreciate you because of your willingness to take them on your journey to success with your business.

They will even go out of their way to share your finished product with their friends and family.

For example, you can allow your listeners to see the entire recording process of your podcast via live streaming.

In the same manner of television shows which records in front of a live studio audience, you can be that business or person which live streams your recordings to your audience.

You can let them know in advance that this live stream recording will last about 30 minutes while encouraging them to leave comments.

Once the live stream part of the recording is over, you can answer their questions as part of the post-production show.

If your podcast is interview based, this can allow your audience exclusive access to ask your guest questions in the comments section during the post-production.

This strategy can help you boost your podcast which is part of your business.

With third party applications like Blue Jeans Network, Zoom, and Crowdcast.io, you can simulcast your podcast recordings to either facebook live, periscope or YouTube Live.

So go out and allow your audience access to your creative process in the same manner as Frida did 35 years ago.

What are your thoughts on the case study?

Deirdre Breakenridge, Owner of Pure Performance Communications

By Cheval John

November 8th, 2017

Today’s episode of What’s The Word? features Deirdre Breakenridge, founder of Pure Performance Communications.

Deirdre has written many books on public relations and social media.

Her recent book “Answers for Modern Communicators: A Guide to Effective Business Communication” deals with how professionals and college students can be successful communicators in a business environment.

She is also the host of #prstudchat, a twitter chat which speaks about how college students can learn more about the public relations field and how they can prepare themselves once they graduate from college.

In this episode, you will hear:

-Deirdre’s process in writing her first book

-The importance of live streaming

-On why she started the podcast, “Women Worldwide”

-On hosting “The PR Influencer Show” on Nasdaq

This episode was recorded on Facebook Live via Blue Jeans Network before airing on BlogTalkRadio.

Snippet on Vallano Media TV

Full Episode on BlogTalkRadio

Website: www.deirdrebreakenridge.com

Twitter: @dbreakenridge

Quotes from Deirdre on:

PUBLIC RELATIONS

Public relations has changed so much because of social media and the way businesses have to be more flexible.

People would go online at any time and if they wanted something, we had to be there.

If you are going to support a business, you have to be ten steps ahead and to understand and listen and know where the pain points are in the market and with the customers to be able to help that business.

NEW MEDIA

I knew we had to embrace new media.

It was a different way of communication and how we approached, not just traditional journalists, but different types of media and where people wanted to receive their news.

In 2003, I had a huge wake-up call.

My team went in to pitch a CEO and his team on a tech product and we were probably a little over-confident.

We thought we knew exactly where we could get the message out through what channels.

After we pitched on how we were going to launch this load balancer product, he kind of looked at me and said, “Okay, that was good, but where’s all the new stuff that’s really going to excite our end users? Where are they going to embrace things?”

What he was saying was why aren’t you talking about blogs.

I had written about that in my second book, which is really ironic that I was writing about blogs, but not pitching that.

I went back to my agency that day and said, “No matter how ahead we think we are, we are not.”

“We are now going to start opening up technology for our public relations professionals. They need to be hands-on in the back end of websites and content management systems.”

“I want public relations people to upload news releases and photos. I want them hands-on with technology.”

They thought I was crazy.

That was the start of “We have to be flexible, we have to move, there’s new things out there.”

Public relations people have to embrace and move forward.

BRANDS BEING MEDIA COMPANIES

They are content machines and they are not just sharing content for the sake of getting their messages across.

They are educating and becoming thought leaders.

They are having other people come in, be correspondents and share news and information and do interviews.

It is a whole new dynamic.

I was sitting with a financial services company recently.

They now have an in-house studio for video production because they are thought leaders in their space and they are going to be doing interviews.

We see this a lot more.

That is the kind of storytelling and brand journalism you want to bring to the table to be a media company.

LIVE STREAMING

I think it is a great opportunity.

It is almost the no bull crap way of getting out some really good transparent information.

You are talking to a person who grew up in the agency world where we would not put out anything.

This is a new way of being able to tell stories and to share who you are and what you do.

To give a piece of yourself as an entrepreneur and to show your passion through a live stream is really important.

If you enjoy this episode, you can share via the social media icons below.

Also, who would you like to be a guest on the show?

Learning How To Build A Business Blog From The Houston Astros

By Cheval John

November 3rd, 2017

On a normal day, going to downtown houston from the northline train station would be a breeze.

Today was not one of those days because the city of houston hosted a parade for their hometown team, Astros, who won their first World Series (WS) championship on Wednesday night.

The people of houston were very excited to celebrate with their team.

By all accounts, an estimated one million people lined up along the parade route leading to city hall.

Half of those traveled by train into downtown to be a part of history.

The Astros brought hope to those who were still recovering from hurricane harvey.

The road to victory began in 2011 when Jim Crane bought the team from Drayton McClane.

The condition to get the sale approved by Major League Baseball (MLB) was moving the team to the American League from the National League the following year.

At the time of the sale, the Astros were on the decline after their previous appearance in the 2005 World Series.

Crane knew they had to rebuild the team from scratch.

The first step in the master plan was hiring Jeff Luhnow, who was the architect behind the St.Louis Cardinals 2006 and 2011 championship teams, as the Astros general manager.

Luhnow used sports analytics to figure out who would be the right fit for the Astros.

In the early stages of the rebuild, the Astros lost 100 games in three straight seasons.

Fans were wondering what was going on with the team.

Many sports pundits thought the whole system of analytics were a joke because they believed Luhnow did not play the sport of baseball.

The criticism intensified in 2014 when Sports Illustrated (SI) declared on their cover the Astros as the 2017 World Series Champions.

Many thought it was a marketing ploy to get more readers.

The folks from S.I. knew they were heading in the right direction.

Signs of the rebuild began to show when they made the 2015 playoffs, where they lost to the eventual World Series champion, Kansas City Royals in the American League Divisional Round.

Though the 2016 season was a failure, the Astros fans were very optimistic for 2017.

The team did not disappoint as they clinched their very first regular season championship in the American League West, went through the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees to win the American League pennant.

Then they went on to beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in seven games to complete their dream season.

You might be wondering how the Astros winning the World Series got to do with growing your business or personal blog?

Glad you ask.

Growing a blog takes a whole lot of time and patience.

In the same manner of how the Astros’ general manager had a long term goal to make the team a success, you must look at the long game in building a tribe for your blog and not go after the home run.

No one can build a blog to 500,000 views in six months unless they had learned lessons from their first blog or if they are a celebrity.

You also must stay the course and ignore the outside noise from those who might be telling you to give up.

If you think you do not have the time to put together the words from scratch, here are some business blogs who uses twitter chats to put together weekly posts.

Note: This is not a quick fix at all because it takes a lot of work to host a twitter chat and even more work to put together the recap for the blog.

#ContentWritingChat, hosted by Express Writers

#TwitterSmarter, hosted by Madalyn Sklar

#SproutChat, hosted by Sprout Social

#VCBuzz, hosted by Viral Content Bee

#ContentChat, hosted by Erika Heald

What are more ways you can build your blog from scratch?