Category Archives: Google+

Katherine L. Garcia
Social Media Cover Photo Sizes for 2016

Social media cover photo sizes

Ever created a cover photo for social media only to find out it’s too small or doesn’t fit right? I have. I don’t want you to go through the pain I did so below are the appropriate dimensions for each social media platform. I suggest you bookmark this post for future reference. And don’t worry, if size dimensions change, I’ll make sure to update this blog post. I’ve got your back.

Social Media Cover Photo Sizes

Facebook Cover Photo Size:

828 px wide by 315 px tall

Facebook Event Cover Photo Size:

784 px wide by 295 px tall

Twitter Header Photo Size:

1500 px wide by 500 px tall

Google+ Cover Image Size:

1080 px wide by 608 px tall

Tumblr Banner Size:

1280 px wide by 1920 px tall

YouTube Channel Art Size:

2560 px wide by 1440px tall

LinkedIn Personal Background Image Size:

1400 px wide by 425 px tall

Linkedin Company Banner image:

646 px wide by 220 px tall

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in early 2016. It has been updated to reflect the latest social media cover photo dimensions as of October 2016

Lorrie Thomas
Google+ Pages for Business Marketing

When I talk to business owners about Google+, many reply with, “One more social media to master!!?” Don’t worry – there is no need to feel social media overwhelm. Setting up or optimizing a Google+ page for your business can be a great addition to your web marketing. A Google+ business page can boost your web marketing, plus (pardon the pun!) get you more visibility and give you a new content sharing channel!

Google+ for Business Can Increase Your Visibility
Every business needs to be visible to target customers. As you probably know, Google is the top-used search engine on the World Wide Web. What you may not know is that one of the main ways people search for products, services and information is through search engines. Today, social media is part of what fuels the content that appears in search engines. With the power of search, social media and Google’s popularity, it makes sense to engage in social media, especially Google’s social media.

When you have a Business Page, it increases your chances of being found for people searching on Google.com, within Google+ and it also gives people a new option of a way to follow and engage with your organization.

Google+ Pages Can Give Your Business a New Content Sharing Channel
We connect, communicate and convert with content. Google+ gives you a targeted, relevant way to expand your content distribution to connect with your contacts. By being active with Google+ for your business, you have another visibility channel to share your videos, blog posts, photos and other relevant content.

Having a Google+ page also allows other people to tag you in posts, increasing the ability for people to see and connect with your brand. 

Be sure that the content you share on your Google+ Business page is valuable content. It needs to serve and support your contacts, not overtly sell your products and services. Self-endorsements don’t work on the social web, ones authentically driven by people do!

If you haven’t created a Google+ page yet, visit https://www.google.com/business/ and hit the “Create Your Google Page” button.

Make Sure Your Google+ Page is Optimized!
Take time to add photos, videos, links to your website, hyperlinks to your website on photos. You can also add custom links to your blog, website, LinkedIn, Facebook, Youtube and your Google Places account.

Being there is the first step. Putting time into creating a robust profile with great about descriptions and photos is next, publishing great content keeps the love alive!

ltr_signature_initial copy

Katherine L. Garcia
Tips for Covering Events on Social Media

Sometimes the act of covering live events on social media, large or small, can feel overwhelming. Deciding what to share, managing all social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, G+, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc.) and making the message meaningful are all points to plan for. We do not plan to fail, we fail to plan!

Here are tips on how to cover events via social media we’ve gathered from experience, which can help you cover your next event and tap the power of social media marketing.

Be Prepared

Know the schedule of events. Have an idea of what you want to cover so you make sure you capture critical event moments. Make a list and if you are working with others, decide who will own what. For over event, we divided social media ownership to avoid content-posting overlap.

Use Your Cellphone

Don’t make social media event coverage complicated – there is no need to carry your laptop everywhere you go; it’s heavy and annoying. For the most part, you can do all of the social media event coverage straight from your mobile device. We were right up there with the event photographers with our iPhones getting some of the same great shots but we were able to post them immediately! (I did convert one photographer who started using his phone in-between camera shots!)

For posting, we love hootsuite.com to manage multiple accounts under one streamlined dashboard and we also were logged into our client’s social media account directly from our phones so we could tweet and post on Instagram. Facebook allows you to be logged into your personal account and be a page manager – Google Plus does too.

Edit Photos Before You Post

People like visuals, so make sure you post photos of the event (food, fun activities, event signs, etc.). We made sure with our client that there were photo releases and for some of the celebrity chefs and sommeliers we shot, we asked permission to post photos of them and share it on social media. Never assume permission – always ask first.

Before posting the photos on social media, we recommend you edit them on your phone. A little tweak can make a positive difference. Personally, I like Snapseed, Afterlight, and the built-in photo editor on my iPhone.

Also download Layout, a free app by Instagram that lets you create collages, and create collages to share on Facebook, Google+, but most importantly, Instagram. Collages don’t look too fab on Twitter. Instagram allows you to crop, change colors and lighting all from the app.

Post live

There is no need to wait to post, slow is the same as stop with social media marketing!  Do it live from the event, this gives attendees and non-attendees opportunities to share. You can also post short videos as well. Just remember that if you’re posting photos to do a quick photo edit before posting! And be mindful of spelling and grammar!

Schedule Social Media Posts in Advance

Schedule content about times, sponsors, and other event related news on social media before the event.We use Hootsuite for social media post scheduling. You can set it and forget and focus on posting more live action shots and focus on responding to people who are liking, sharing, retweeting or using your event hashtag.

Have a Social Media Partner (or Two)

Posting on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, etc., and replying to people’s comments and messages during the event, is time consuming, so don’t do it alone! Have a partner! Create a clear plan of who is going to manage what. Teamwork goes a long way. There were times at the event where I was live on site and my WMT teammie was cooped up in a hotel conference room getting fed pics while she was citing names and exact details of the photo and posting live. It worked really well – I got the shots, she got the fine details from a quiet room and had her full laptop up to work and type easily.

Invest in a portable chargerNothing is more annoying (or unprofessional) than running out of battery life during a major social-media-worthy activity. Own a portable charger. My favorite is the Mophie cell phone charger. They are reliable, sturdy, and get the job done.

Use Hashtags

Create your own hashtag for the event. Use the hashtag on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Instagram. Share the hashtag with visitors (if possible show the hashtag on a projector), remind speakers to share it, put it in signs and lead by example. Use the hashtag for all (or almost all) of your posts during the event.

Engage

Like photos or comments of people who are using your hashtag or commenting on your content live on site. Don’t wait – people want instant gratification. If appropriate, reply to the comments. Don’t be shy to ask people at the event to follow or like the business’ social media. It’s all about word of mouth, baby!

The most important thing out of this entire list is to loosen up.

Have fun – this is SOCIAL media (not robot media)!

Graphic Sizes for Social Media – Size DOES Matter!

Every social media platform has their own way of displaying their photos. When it comes to posting images on social media, size does matter when it comes to social media marketing!

According to NeoMan Studios, people remember 80% of what they see and do, 20% of what they read, and 10% of they hear. Colors also increase readers’ attentions span. And with so many “stuff” being thrown out at people on social media all day long, it’s more important than ever for your message to pop up against the crowd. And infographics can help you do that.

Pinterest, for example, likes long vertical graphics while Instagram is fond of only squared graphics:

instagram-and-pinterest

When creating a graphic (or instructing a vendor to design) to share on social media, make sure you save your graphic in the following dimensions:

Facebook:
940px x 788px
[Click here to see an example]

Twitter:
1024px x 512px
[Click here to see an example]

LinkedIn:
800px x 800px
[Click here to see an example]

Google+:
800px x 1200px
[Click here to see an example]

Pinterest:
735px x 1102px
[Click here to see an example]

Instagram:
640px x 640px
[Click here to see an example]

Click on this graphic below and then save it in your files:
social-media-graphic-sizes

Anne Orfila
How to Effectively Connect with Customers on Social Media

social media marketingAs you know (partly because you are sitting there reading this online) the age we are living in is practically dominated by the internet! It is so important to have a social media presence, both for yourself and for your business. You might be thinking, “That’s old news, I have Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram accounts. Tell me something new!”

Thanks for the lead in, I will tell you something new! First of all, kudos to you for staying current with your social media marketing (or being on it in the first place!). The next step is to examine how each account is set up and make sure it is optimized. Do your social media accounts have the same look and feel as your website (which hopefully has the same look and feel as your storefront – if you have one or is on brand and on purpose to sell your services? Is your logo displayed? Is the business description accurate and is there contact information (phone number, email address) readily available? Link to your website? Clearly say who you are and what you do and whom you serve? I’m going to assume you answered yes, yes, yes, and yes! Great! Your social media accounts are ready for action, so let’s get to the heart of this blog post.

What I’m really excited to address is content (your Facebook posts, Twitter tweets, Instagram photos, LinkedIn updates, etc.,). With so much information floating around on the web, your content needs to engage current customers and be enticing to attract future business. Enjoy some free web marketing therapy advice on how to effectively connect with customers on social media!

Create Valuable Content

Posts on social media that get the most engagement are either educational or entertaining. When composing a post, consider:

  • Voice: Are you being positive and/or helpful to your target audience?
  • Resourcefulness: Does this address needs and/or questions that your customers may have about your business or services?
  • Engagement: Will other people find this funny, inspiring or useful enough to share or respond to this post?
  • Spelling and Grammar: Don’t make your audience cringe from a misspelling or grammatical error! See actual posting from a “shirt” company below:

WMT-June2015

Be Responsive, Not Reactive

If your post is generating comments, retweets, or shares, that is a great opportunity to become part of the conversation. If someone compliments your business, say “Thank you!” If someone asks a question or makes a statement, respond to them appropriately. You are not just using social media to “tell” them, you are using it to interact with your customer base.

If someone posts something negative, stop and reflect on their post before you respond. Think before you post! Some things to consider:

  • Does my response sound defensive?
  • Will my response offend anyone?
  • Would it be better to respond to this person via a private message (or phone call, if you know the person)?
  • Is my response adding fuel to the fire or putting it out?

Be Active, Not Annoying

More is not always better. These are the general guidelines of how many times to post on various social media platforms before your audience starts losing interest:

  • Facebook: 3 to 6 posts per week, skipping days in between and weekends. Facebook users are less active on weekends.
  • Twitter: 3 posts per day. Engagement decreases after the third tweet.
  • Google+: 1 to 3 posts per day and consistency is the key. Traffic is said to drop when there are long breaks between posts.
  • Pinterest: 5 or more posts per day is okay.

Note: These are just suggestions! Don’t burn your marketing budget by trying to adhere to the numbers above. If your time or budget only allows you to post content once or twice a week on various platforms, just make sure it is valuable (and don’t forget to check back in to see if you may need to respond to people’s comments).

Look at The Big Picture

“A picture says a thousand words.” Don’t be afraid to use pictures, charts, infographics, and drawings in your posts. Images get more responses – likes, comments, and shares – than posts with just text. Integrate images into your web presence. In my experience, pictures that are pertinent to the business get the best response. Some examples: pictures from an event that your business hosted, pictures of employees, candids of daily business operations, an employee’s newborn. . . you get the idea. While stock photos are enticing to use (they are full of beautiful people, magnificent scenery, professional photography) they can look a bit too perfect. I can almost guarantee your audience will respond more to pictures of “crazy hair day” at your work than they will to professional images of people they don’t know.

One Last Thing

Be genuine. The point of social media marketing is to support in relationship making and relationship building (which is what marketing is all about!) There is an art and science to social media marketing and it is bridged with heart. When your passion and enthusiasm for your business shows, people will notice – and will respond. Your reward will be true and valuable connections between your company and your customers. And, most likely, better business!

virtualwordspecialist
Five Steps to Checking Free Images for Social Posting

Images bring aesthetic value to social media posts: Blogs, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google + Pinterest, and more. Word of caution: make sure those free web images you used to enhance your posts are really “free to use.” Garry_Knight_Picture_of_pictures-imageAn article by Matt Morgan for Search Engine Watch titled “How to Find Free Images with Google Advanced Image Search” is a must read as he cautions against using “free” images without checking Google Advanced Image Search first.

His simple five step process (with screen shots) can help you avoid or the image deleted from your website or worse copy wright infringement correspondence from the owner!

Image credit: Garry Knight Flickr CC

Here are Matt’s five steps to checking free images: (click on the article above for visual aids).

Step 1 – Enter a search term in Google Images search

Step 2 – Click the Gear icon, then select Advanced search

Step 3 – Scroll down and use the usage rights drop down menu to select free to use or share, even commercially.

Step 4 – Click the Advanced Search button.

Step 5 – Double check the image using TinEye reverse image search. Important note: As Matt points out, this extra step is important as other webmasters and bloggers may have removed the copyright and metadata from the image and re-uploaded without the owner’s permission.

More image sharing resources: Google’s Advanced search images generally provide stock photos, but it can be limited. If you are looking for more variety of free or nearly free images, the following open source and sharing sites should give you a nice selection to choose from. (Check out each site for their terms of use).

The Web Marketing Therapy team loves sharing great tips and ideas. Let us know what your favorite image sharing sites are!

Additional Sources: Hub spot:  http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/33423/19-Reasons-You-Should-Include-Visual-Content-in-Your-Marketing-Data.aspx

Copyblogger: http://www.copyblogger.com/lede-arresting-images/