Tag Archives: Small Business

8 Social Media Terms you NEED to know

4 Oct

Social Media

 

 

 

 

 

1. APP –

The term App is short for application. Which is a shortened version of “Application Program”

An App is a small program that is usually free-standing but runs alongside an existing platform, such as Facebook or Twitter & brings an addition element to that platform, such as a

game app, like app, follower app – You can also quite easily have a custom App developed for you – One which will do practically whatever you would like it to – such as record visitors, send out company info, take information etc.

2. CONTENT –

Content is the information you place on your social media platforms, such as videos, blogs, images & text. Good quality, original content is key to gaining trust from followers.

3. ENGAGEMENT –

On SocialMedia, the engagement is how much interaction there is in relation the Content (see 2.) you are posting. this is usually measured in “Likes” , “Followers, “Shares” etc.

4. INFOGRAPHIC –

This is an illustration that shows information, especially numbers & statistics, in a pictorial format.

5. SEO –

Search Engine Optimisation, the process of making websites content visible to the audience, usually via carefully worded posts on blogs, tagged pictures, images & content.

6. TAG –

A word or mark that appears on a photo etc that is designed to let your followers or friends know what you are doing or where you are , or indeed about a product / service you like.

7.  USER GENERATED CONTENT –

This is content (see point 2.) that is produced by the general public,rather than by the company or people acting officially on behalf of the company.

8. WEBINAR –

A live meeting or presentation, sent out to “attendees” via the internet. These can be interactive & viewers can participate, asking questions.

 

Please read my other blogs for some more tips & hints.

Social Media & The Workplace

Social Media for Events

My Fave Social media Platforms

Do I need Social Media?

Should I Automate my Social Media?

I hope the above helps.

Karin

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

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Social Media & the Workplace

13 Sep

I’ve been involved with Social Media since it first ever appeared & long before Rocoja Limited – I could see the benefit of social media,  much to the chagrin of some of my employers;

This came to light quite prominently, when I attended board meetings aimed at trying to devise a way to eradicate the horrible “Bebo”, “MySpace” & other such like forums that were emerging & causing time to be used by staff.

Social-Media

I was seen as the Middle Manager Rebel, The one who wanted the staff to be “lazy”, “chatty”, not focused…. Which of course was NOT what I wanted. I saw the potential to harness this time for a greater purpose – which lets be honest, was going to be used, via extra “toilet breaks” etc, anyway.

I wanted to allow staff to post, as long as the posts were contained to their own, entitled scheduled breaks, I also felt we could utilise these moments, which could be enhanced with co-inciding positive things happening at work..

I also wanted adverts to be placed where these employees were dwelling online, as I saw that if this was the case, surely the demographics we were aiming at, were there too?

However one particular employer didnt see this at all & we parted ways after all internet access was blocked for staff & all use of mobile / smartphones was banned – it was considered the easiest way to ensure the staff were focused..

 

fb-faiilThis back-fired galactically as many employees took longer & longer breaks & some left the employ, citing “draconian” rules… Indeed the company didnt realise the potential of the online forums & social media hangouts until it was too late & 80% of the workforce were laid off.

NO I dont lay the folding of this company firmly at the doorstep of the stupid internet policy, BUT it had a huge impact!

Nowadays  we all know the benefit of Social Media cannot be understated & the benefit of positive use by employees MUST NOT be undervalued.

I firmly believe the relationships between employers & employees can be positivey enhanced by using social media in the right way

Lets look at some stats –

  • Over 75% of your employees use social media to connect with fellow employees.
  • Over 60% will say that it can enhance their working day.
  • Over a third use Social Media to improve their skills / work environment & most of this is done on their own volition.

However – those are positives – lets also look at what small business is doing to capture this hugely untapped resource..

  • Almost half of the businesses I speak to do nothing to encourage positive use of Social media to enhance the business,
  • With around 75% of them having no training at all in any of the usual social media outlets.
  • Many small businesses (& some larger who havent quite grasped this yet) still see this forum as a negative.

Its almost the end of 2014 &  surely we all know that social networks are an integral part of many peoples’ daily life now,  with the number of social media users around the world rising sharply over the last decade.

Consumers are ahead of the suppliers in some cases when it comes to small businesses on Social Media – So a clear branding is extremely important, a clear ethic across that brand & a concise, metered approach to your own social media advertising is imperative.

MY advice – Get some help

We know from campaigns run over the last few years, companies with successful social initiatives use outside agencies.

In contrast, those with ineffective social programs usually go it alone.
Leave it to a professional, so you can get on with running your business.. Its a lot cheaper than you think!

WELL – it should be! Read this ->  Bigger isn’t always Better

 

Please read my other blogs for some more tips & hints.

I hope the above helps.

Karin

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

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A brief history of the Internet & Social Media

2 Aug

And why it applies to your “Brand”.

For the purposes of this blog the term “Brand” applies to your Small Business, Event, Personality, Celebrity, Goal etc etc – Whatever you are using Social Media to tell the outside world.

Internet Use

The term #Socialmedia refers to Internet sites where people interact with each other &/or business’s, celebs & products etc; where they can share & discuss information & idea’s. Recently this has become far more involved with multimedia playing a huge role & the most engaging posts are now a mix of personal words, pictures, videos and audio.

In the late 1960’s a crude form of internet was created, which led to the first email being sent in 1971.

In the late 1970’s a couple of friends created an online bulletin board, which was used to share information between them. This was the first ever Online Community.

This was quickly followed by a number of Universities in the USA, using online boards to share information amongst students.

In the 80’s things began to move very quickly & Dial-up access was pioneered by a number of American companies, allowing just over 1 million people to “get on-line” for the first time ever.

The biggest of these was AOL (America On Line) which first opened in 1985.

During the last year of the 80’s a British engineer named Tim Berners-Lee began work at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research, in Switzerland), this work was to become the foundations of the World Wide Web.

In 1993, CERN donated the WWW to the world – Servers started to appear all over the western world & Browsers such as Mosaic were born.

1994 saw the birth of BHI’s Geocites – where users could create their own webpages. This became a community of over 138 Million sites before its eventual closure in 2009 (USA). Yahoo opened in this year & to this day still owns Geocites (which are still hosting websites, but only in Japan.

In 1995 – Headlines were abounding such as “Internet Blah Blah – Hype Alert” – as many didn’t understand the impact this was going to have on the future.

Blogging & Users own profiles began appearing in 1997 – AOL now had an Instant messenger function & the internet was starting to flourish with rich, diverse information.

Google opened in 1999

Leading up to 2000 there had been a flush of “Domain pirates” – People who bought the domain names up as soon as they were available & then sold them to whoever really needed them for vastly inflated sums. There were also a number of hastily created internet companies & in unfortunately for many, in 2000 the DOT.COM bubble burst.

However in the early 2000’s – along came Apple & Wikipedia & the internet rapidly recovered itself & with over 50 million people on line (34 via AOL) – there was a boom in information & products & services available.

2003 saw the opening of the Social networking site aimed at professionals – LinkedIn.
A music oriented download portal – ITunes & a Social networking site – MySpace

2004 Saw Facebook launch, along with Flickr & Digg

2005 – Along came Bebo & YouTube – There were now over Billion Web Pages.

In 2006 Twitter was launched. – During this time, Google was receiving more than 400 million search requests daily.

2007 Saw Facebook become partly owned by Microsoft & they began to accept advertising, They also allowed 3rd party developers to install apps on their pages. This year also saw the launch of the first iPhone by Apple.

In 2009 it was estimated that the internet had over 59 Billion webpages, but had become impossible to keep count.

Facebook grew to over 400 Million users in 2010 – With the internet now being the prefered way for people get their News… (both social & world). Apple also released the first iPad Tablet.

2011 saw Social media communication surge with Facebook having 550 Million users & Twitter having 70 around 70 Million tweets sent daily.

In 2012 it was estimated that at least 2 BILLION people use Social Media With access being available via smartphones and tablets, as well as TV’s & Computers. New sites are emerging constantly, to keep up with the demand for information. The top ten social networks of this year are Facebook, Pinterest, Blogger, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, WordPress, LinkedIn, MySpace & Wiki.

2013 saw the following statistics emerge.
YouTube Users = 1 Billion
Facebook Users = 1.11 Billion
Twitter Users = 500 Million
Flickr Users = 87 Million Users
LinkedIn = 225 Million Users
Google+ = 343 Million Users
DropBox = 100 Million Users
Blogs (across platforms) = 156 Million
Reddit = 69.9 Million Users

There were live tweets sent from on board the International Space Station this year also.

This year – 2014 ????

It is estimated 85% of the entire population of the world is now connected through access too, or use of the above!
It is estimated at least 25% of the world’s population use Social Media as the first port of call to get information daily.

Facebook has been active for 10 years now – There are many camps who say it has had its day… The audience has moved on & people are looking for quick “soundbite” sized information, Hence the emergence of image / video based social media such as Vine & Instagram & Snapchat.

So the message is – YOUR Business / Event / Character / Persona / etc etc  NEEDS to be on Social media.

The Audience are like sponges, soaking up information about you. (Or your competition if you are not on there)!

Contact info@Rocoja.co.uk for information on how you can  have a presence for as little as £1.80  Per Day.

Not Automated – Not a robot – Not generic – BUT targeted & bespoke…..

www.Rocoja.co.uk

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

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Social Media for Events in 13 steps

26 Jun

Events Character Means Concert Occasion Events Or FunctionsA quick “How to” guide 

 

 

1) Prepare the information you need – Location / format etc

2) Define your goals

3) Learn where your target audience are – (research their online habits)

4) Decide on appropriate Social Media forum (Pinterest/ Facebook / Twitter etc)

5) Create the platforms (grab same names / Very similar names across all you use)

6) Brand the platforms – Using relevant colours / icons / logos

7) Create an engaging intro & post onto relevant communities/groups

8) Decide on Hashtags & keywords & ensure their use across platforms

9) Support & encourage pre-event networking

10) Ask for ideas from the community you build – create an engaging atmosphere

11) Ensure regular linking to sales portals such as eventbrite or your webpage

12) Create social links to other communities / groups in same arena

13) Near to event, create a “count-down” to increase the anticipation

OR Spend your time building your event, doing the fun part and hire a Social Media consultant to help.

It’s not expensive as you may think & they have “contacts” which may help in disseminating your info & event out.

Contact info@Rocoja.co.uk for details of what we can do.

www.Rocoja.co.uk

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

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Why can’t I DIY it?

14 May

I’ve been asked this question a LOT by the small businesses who seek out my help.

I create a social media presence for my clients, branding it & marketing them in a way that gets the best from the platforms we choose to use in relation to the business/ sole trader I am helping.. It’s not a One-size fits all routine & is certainly not an easy thing to do. BUT on first impressions, I can see why some people would assume, it’s just “messing about with Facebook” .

So below is a quick “help” guide to see if you could / should be handling your own marketing..

  1. Do you have Social Media or Marketing experience?

(This may seem a silly question, as you would expect someone to have experience in something they were going to undertake, especially if its something as fundamental to the life & success of their business as marketing is;  However many many directors/owners have no experience in this area & fall straight away at the first hurdle).

2.  Do you have time to learn a whole new Job role?

– Below is the “Job description” from an advert placed this week in a publication for a “Social media marketer”.

We are looking for a competent & able person to optimise, maintain, monitor and lead the platforms and any marketing strategies carried out in them: Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, YouTube, Pinterest, Mixcloud, Soundcloud, Google+, Flickr, etc.

– Content creation and management: content marketing.

– Interaction with users: community engagement.

– Social commerce: leads, calls to action and conversions in social media.

– Monitoring: online media, information sources and social channels.

– Measurements and follow-up: determining the ROI of the work carried out, justifying the quality of the actions taken and, of course, the results thereof.

– Fan building: based on achieving specific ROI objectives.

– Contests and campaigns: creative input, development, starting up and monitoring.

– Qualitative aspects: Sentiment reports, strengths, scope, virality, passion and effects for the brand online.

– SEO: website, blog and social platform (social search) optimisation, aimed at improving search results.

– Keyword optimisation and improvement in new SEO/SEM opportunities

– Email marketing: development, creative input, running, results and campaigns.

– Database: creation, management and maintenance of the database, making it larger and more streamlined.

– Website: content optimisation and stimulation, improvements within the website structure: functionality, usability, navigation by users. Developing and launching a mobile version. Promoting, marketing and communicating all the website’s contents. Measurements, monitoring and follow-up of results.

– Coordination and management of press and communication tasks: contents, interviews, website news, exclusive acts, etc.

– Video-marketing: optimisation, search, keywords, sponsored videos, marketing.

– e-Commerce: creation and generation of online sales opportunities.

– Reports: online sales, online positioning, online reputation, online results.

– Community: leading online communities, brand representation in different forums and communities.

– Online branding: searching, identifying and improving all brand-related aspects in social media.

– Adviser: playing a brand consulting/advising role with regard to the online environment: opportunities, threats, new initiatives, development of digital identity and online presence, identification of potential business and new digital transactions.

Other ad-hoc duties as & when required.

(What do you think)?

  3. Research time

Finding & engaging clients is key to the growth of any online platform, this is luckily a smaller arena when you work for small businesses as less is often,  more – a more targeted approach with the focus on quality rather than quantity is key here. However, you need to be very comfortable with engaging the audience you are seeking. this can be by demographic / geographic or another key factor.

The 3 points above are the most key factors to consider when thinking about a DIY campaign.

If you can do this & still run/grow your business, then fantastic!!!

However for the sake of a few pounds a month, I highly recommend engaging the services of a professional.

This doesn’t mean, get online & find the biggest flashiest website, with promises of hundreds of followers & clicks etc in a few days for extortionate sums..

This means look at a social media company who understands small businesses, look for references, look for recommendations & of course look at costs.

Rocoja is happy to provide free analysis & to quote to help small businesses.

We are trusted amongst the small business community in Surrey & South London, with costs starting at just £30 per month.

www.Rocoja.co.uk

Karin

Please join Rocoja on any of the social media platforms below

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3 Tricks I’ve learned over the years

15 Apr

During my extensive & eclectic career, I have attended many “sales” training courses, along with motivational & managerial courses,How to be the best courses & lots more all packaged up as “career enhancing”.

Training

Through the last quarter century I have come to realise that a few tiny tricks help far more than some ofthe “essential” tools I was given at the above seminars..

Today I will share 3 with you.

Trick 1:-  If you work in telesales, or customer services & are hooked up to a phone all day, put a Mirror on your desk. Whenever you are on a call, make an effort to look at yourself & smile… Sounds weird, but people can hear the smile at the other end of the phone line & it can lift a boring/tense conversation up.

Trick 2:- If you work in a customer facing environment, maybe at a Bar area, Serving bench. Install a large mirror on the wall behind you. Customers who approach you will then see themselves in the mirror behind you and the chances of them behaving irrationally or getting angry lowers significantly.

Trick 3:- Fake it till you make it; confidence is more important than knowledge in many scenarios. Don’t be intimidated by anyone, everyone is playing a role: I’ve come across many people who employed this strategy & eventually they became exactly the person they were “faking” at being. So fake your confidence, whilst all the while improving your ability.

My most valuable lesson learned was to be around positive people, in work, at home, in life in general.

self

You are an individual, let that shine through & maybe give yourself permission to use the tricks above to help make life a little easier.

As with all my blogs – Please please let me know if you find any of this helpful.

Thank you

Karin

www.Rocoja.co.uk

Email me here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk

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Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

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To Pinterest or not to Pinterest

8 Mar

So, what is Pinterest?

Pinterest started out as a forum for collecting (online) images of things that inspired the user, it has since evolved into a hugely successful marketing tool for businesses as well as individuals.

There are so many uses….

Personally – Its a Virtual Bulletin board 🙂

For instance, what do you do if you are online and see an image of something you love and don’t want to forget?

You could copy & paste it into an email & send it to yourself or you could save the page in your bookmarks (hoping the owner didn’t remove it) or print out the image & tuck it away somewhere. All seem like way to much effort –

Well here’s where Pinterest comes into its own!

Simply “pin” the image to a board you have created. You can save images of Wallpaper designs you like, Cars you wish you could afford, Flowers you want in your wedding bouquet, the list is endless.  Pinterest saves all of your pins on your account so that you can access them easily. You can also follow friends and “repin” things that they have already saved.

Of course you need a Pinterest account BUT its as simple as heading to www.Pinterest.com & applying. You can choose the names of the boards you want & whether they are public or private. Next step is to install a “Pin-it” button on your browser.

This magic button will allow you to “pin” things straight from your browser to your pinterest account.- when you’re in your Pinterest The Pin-It Button is available from Pinterest in the “about” section.

So – Thats all great if you want to have a personal account & “pin” inspiration for a Wedding/Honeymoon, or Pictures of Houses or clothes you like BUT what about for business?

Pinterest has quickly become the third-most popular social networking site in the world, behind only Facebook and Twitter.

The success is closely linked to its simplicity.  Retailers and businesses have warmed to this format extremely quickly & because Pinterest is all about sharing different things you find online, its immensely satisfying as a small business owner, to see users pinning  your products / pins.

BUT its not a solo game – You will not be very popular if you try to sell your services / items only to followers, You need to interact with users & create a Brand online.

Boards showcasing other companies / related products & services to your own will be well received, as will re-pins of the “competition”. It sounds at odds with old marketing methods, but the whole process is based on “sharing” & so you need to be seen to be interacting with like-minded businesses & potential customers, to truly get the full benefit of Pinterest.

Image ImageImageImage

The other beautiful thing about Pinterest is the diversity of businesses on there – From Jewellery companies, Social Media companies, Designers, Property companies to Bakers, Artists & Charities.

I believe Pinterest can be adapted to benefit most businesses. Its not just for those that are very visual – Such as Clothing/Make-up…

However – For business, it needs a targeted & professional approach to ensure your reach is maximised.

Contact me if you would like further information.

Please join us by clicking the links below

Facebook Rocoja     Rocoja Google +     Rocoja linked in      Twitter Rocoja

 

or here –

Karin

www.Rocoja.co.uk

email us here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk

Facebook – Rocoja Limited

Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

g+ – Rocoja Limited

 

Tips for Success in 2014

7 Jan

Is 2014 going to be a great year for your business?

Here are 5 quicktips which will help!

  1. Stay Positive! – Above all, This is so important, your mood, attitude & persona really affects others around you;
  2. What makes you Unique? – Ideally you want to be recognised as a “specialist” in your field, or as having an advantage over others.
  3. Do people know you are there? – Get your business out-there. No matter what type of business you are in, get it on-line.
  4. Is cheaper better? – NO! Understand that people who buy purely on price are less likely to remain loyal, so don’t do yourself a disservice by trying to undercut competitors & then finding yourself working harder for less!
  5. Are you a Wiki-Guru? – Do you “know everything”? – NO! So don’t try & do everything, ask friends or family for help. Also employing other people who have a “specialist” knowledge (See tip 2 above) is key to success, as they will bring a passion for what they do to your business.

Lastly, just remember, there is no guaranteed plan for success, otherwise we would all be doing it BUT there is no journey without a step being taken!

Please have a look at some other pages for more tips & tricks:-

Image Social Media Tips   Image Small Business Social Media

Social Media really is very important & can have a massive effect if used correctly.

Please join us by clicking the links below

Facebook Rocoja     Rocoja Google +     Rocoja linked in      Twitter Rocoja

Gathering Intel

14 Nov

Part of the services I offer is the “Build a Database” service.

This includes capturing details of followers/friends (where possible) on FB / Twitter & placing these details in a basic format

(more commonly excel). This can be from scratch or from an existing list of followers.

This usually doesn’t cause much of an issue as I (or one of my colleagues) am the one compiling the list from scratch & 99% of the time this is done electronically (straight onto excel).

However I have recently come across a number of small businesses which are run from home offices etc, where the owner / director is still keeping manual records. This is something I happily transfer to electronic however I have been astounded at the level of sensitive information people have lying about in their home-offices.

I’ve seen folders full of names & addresses; customers scribbled down in haste and with information so sensitive its astounding.

Collecting customer information is VITAL for small business, a basic database is essential for mail-shots/loyalty schemes and information such as this used correctly can breed customer loyalty & promote sales.

However you must never forget your responsibilty to keep this information secure.

If you handle personal information about individuals, you have a number of legal obligations to protect that information under the Data Protection Act 1998.

see :- Data Protection

Please email me with any request for quotes on how to transfer your paper files to a basic database easily if you are in SWLondon or Surrey.

Karin@Rocoja.co.uk

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a Small Business supporting fellow small businesses.

Oh & PS – Try to make the writing easy to decipher – Pretty please

Join Rocoja here

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Time Management

2 Oct

I’ve been thinking about how, working for myself was supposed to be a freeing experience.

You know, no more difficult bosses – no more dragging days of mundane monotony – no more bad decisions affecting me, made by the hierarchy I couldn’t access or advise.

Well the above has been addressed & it’s a great feeling, however the other thing I thought I would achieve, more time to myself, has been a bit more elusive…..

Stopwatch

However I am very aware this is 90% my fault.

I know what I should be doing, but putting it into practice for a bit of a workaholic like me, is a whole other ball-game.

So I am re -familiarising myself with some old-fashioned Time Management tips / skills & thought maybe you may benefit also….

  1. Make a daily list of things to do – Sounds fairly obvious, BUT believe me, its something that many of us plan to do, but just don’t get around to doing.. Better still, Try & do it the night before.. Try & work through your “day plan”, This will give you short goals & each time you complete one, you will feel better about the day, just seeing a tick next to it is a huge boost to your psyche! This also helps if you are caught off-guard by something you were not expecting as you will still have your list of tasks sitting there when your immediate issue is done with. Your daily tasks haven’t disappeared into a fog of other stuff in your head only to re-emerge as an emergency a few days later….
  2. Make use of a calendar / diary… You can choose an electronic/web-based one or indeed a traditional book type one. I used to use the web-based Google calendar all the time, but lately have reverted to carrying a more traditional diary with me.. This is purely so I can see the days filling up.. My writing only allows me to put so much in a day slot now – web-based, you can type & type & the space gets bigger…
  3. Make use of deadlines & put these in your diary. Set achievable deadlines for projects, and make sure these are clearly marked in your diary so you don’t have clashes of important “to-do’s”…
  4. Delegate things that can be moved to other people, I know we want to remain in control & to finish tasks we start, but sometimes, you just have to know when to move the tasks on to someone with a skill-set better equipped for that task, or indeed to someone with more time on their hands 🙂
  5. Know when to have “me” time. This is the bit I constantly struggle with. Knowing when to cut-off is so important. This is not only important when doing jobs / tasks at home or in a small business, but it’s also vital if you are involved in meetings etc where people are allowing time to run away (maybe they are over thinking issues or going off topic too much) – so don’t be afraid to interject & pull the meeting back on course.

These are only a few tips, but they really do help.

I am going to make a concerted effort to follow some of my own advice…

Let me know how you get on.

XX
Karin

www.Rocoja.co.uk

email us here – Info@Rocoja.co.uk

Facebook – Rocoja Limited

Twitter – @RocojaSurrey

g+ – Rocoja Limited

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