2017 Social Media Image Sizes Cheatsheet [Infographic]

One of the most powerful things you can do to your social media updates to make them more engaging is to ensure they have eye-catching visual components.

With social media changing all the time, the standard image sizes regularly change as well.

Bookmark this handy reference to social media image sizes, created by makeawebsitehub.com, for the next time you find yourself in need of the specifications for your favorite social media site. They’ve even provided Photoshop templates for you to use as well.

makeawebsitehub infographic - social media image sizes cheatsheet

Source: https://makeawebsitehub.com/social-media-image-sizes-cheat-sheet/

YouTube Famous, Making It Big on the Internet

I recently came across a 2015 book release called YouTube Famous: Making It Big on the Internet by Rosie Matheson.

YouTube Famous by Rosie MathesonIts cover caught my eye, as all good covers should do, reminding me of the old Brady Bunch trailer with colorful boxes, each containing a smiling face that urged you to smile right back at them.

Making it big on the internet?

Isn’t that what so many of us hope to do? I don’t know about you, but I don’t particularly care if it’s on the internet or in real life. Making it big speaks to me of financial freedom, the easy life, and having all the time in the world to spend with my friends and family enjoying the things I love.

That’s luxury to me!

So I explored the book further. It’s description said:

YouTube has revolutionized the viewing habits of millions of people around the world and looks likely to continue doing so. YouTube Famous presents case studies of 20 of the world’s most successful YouTubers providing original content to inspire those who might want to set up a channel of their own – it’s also a book which will be enjoyed by fans. Complete with tips to produce your own programs, it shows how YouTubers built up their channels from scratch and developed content to please their growing fanbase. With a growing online world and more and more people tuning in to the internet, particularly young people, this is the book you need to read for the secrets of success.

The highlighting is my own, and acknowledges what stood out to me in deciding whether to read the book or not.

As I interpreted it, the author would use case studies of successful YouTubers in order to show what sets them apart from other YouTubers who are struggling to figure out how to make their channel work for them. The intent being, to show the reader what the necessary ingredients and steps are to achieving success themselves.

Overpromised and underdelivered

Unfortunately, YouTube Famous overpromised and underdelivered. It read more like a celebrity tabloid than a serious study of successful people. I now know more about who on YouTube is straight and who is gay, who’s dating each other and who’s not, than I anticipated when I first picked up the book.

I’m not too certain how the author came to choose these particular individuals as the best case studies. The author did say that she ruled out anyone who started off rich or has had the backing of any organization with corporate muscle. Yet, a few of the people profiled were sponsored by Skype and other corporations, so I’m not too clear how she’s defining “backing” here.

Regardless, she acknowledges that the people she selected to profile all fit a common mold. They are ordinary people who have built up their channels on the strength of their personalities, their wit and the quality and originality of their work.

As I read through the book it became apparent that most are from the UK, and they all got their start essentially either vlogging about make-up or being comic goofballs and pulling pranks.

The oldest member of the YouTube crew (did I forget to mention, they’re all friends?) was born in 1983 and started their channel no later than 2011, seeming to imply that if you’re older than your mid-30s and didn’t jump on the YouTube wagon long before now, you’ve missed the boat!

Also, it seems that every single one of them has a viewing audience made up of teenage girls. So if you’d hoped for information that might help you reach any other demographic, you’re on your own.

A few more flaws

As far as the tips to grow your own channel that the author promised? It seemed like an abandoned effort. The first few profiles end with a grey box in which you’ll find some tips. But after the first few, there were no more to tips called out for you. They needed to be inferred from the profiles themselves.

Which brings me to another major flaw in this book. With all of the frequent references to the YouTubers, their channels, and specific videos on those channels, the eBook didn’t contain links to any of them. Had it done so, there were a few video descriptions that sparked my curiosity enough to watch them, but not enough to go look for them.

The best of the tips

All that said, here are the best tips that I culled out for myself and wholeheartedly agree with (although they weren’t new to me).

  1. Be yourself and treat your viewers like they’re your friends, not prospects or strangers.
  2. Invite and respond to comment, and let your subscribers be part of the channel’s growth.
  3. And most of all, find ways to collaborate. Every member of the YouTube crew saw significant growth in their number of subscribers when they were introduced to someone else’s audience.

What I didn’t find in the book were the production tips mentioned in the description, as well as information I’d anticipated like the mechanics of growing a channel (looking at viewer consumption data to determine what content to create, how to broadcast videos to get the greatest visibility, etc.).

Instead, most of the YouTubers profiled seem to take a “seat of the pants” approach, either recording whatever it is they feel like or taking viewers up on dares.

While I had personally never heard of any of the 20 YouTubers profiled, their subscriber and viewing numbers are impressive! And they do speak to the fact that YouTube is a different medium than TV. It serves a different purpose and needs to be handled as its own broadcast medium, even as its own art form.

Deliver on what you promise

As for the book itself? I think the publisher got the blurb wrong, and it put the author in an awkward position. The book promised to the reader is not what was delivered, and it appears an editor tried to shoe-horn what the author wrote into what the publisher wanted to publish, with unsatisfactory results all the way around.

Had the book subtitle and blurb positioned it as collection of celebrity profiles of young and famous YouTubers, that would have been one thing (and my review rating would have been different, as it is I only gave it 2-stars on Amazon).

Trying to pass it off as a business book offering case studies on how to create a successful channel was a mistake. To do that would have required a more in-depth look at what made each channel successful, so that the reader could replicate it on their own, and a more varied sampling of case studies.

If you’re over 35 and hoping to reach an audience other than teen girls with your brand, there’s not a lot to go on in YouTube Famous.

Animoto’s 2015 Video Marketing Cheat Sheet [Infographic]

According to a recent study by Animoto, more than 7 billion videos watched each and every day on Facebook and YouTube.

You can read the press release about the Animoto Online and Social Video Marketing Study to learn more.

However, one thing is clear…

If video content isn’t part of your marketing strategy, you’re missing out! And Animoto is a great way to get started…

Consider this:

  • 4 times as many consumers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it.
  • Customers are nearly 50% more likely to read email newsletters that include links to video.
  • 4 in 5 consumers say a video showing how a product or service works (or what it’s about) is important.

Remember, your book is your product. Your name is your brand. You are your company.

So, how are you going to use video to promote your topic? Share in the comments below!

”2015

The Best Uses for a Book Trailer Video

I recently came across a discussion on LinkedIn where Ambalika Bhattacharyya, an author and marketing associate, posted the following question:

I would very much like to hear from authors on how they use the video trailer of a book to take it to its readers. Do share.

The issue here isn’t what to do with a book trailer, it’s what to do with videos in general. Most video creators don’t pay attention to how video actually works. So, they spend the time, effort and possibly money to have a video made, but then don’t use it properly.

LightbulbHere are just a few thoughts for you on how you can get the most out of any video that you create.

Create Your YouTube Channel

First of all, make sure you have your own YouTube channel. I’m assuming if you have videos created, you’ve got one.

In the channel settings, make sure that you populate the About information, including a good profile image and cover art to make the channel engaging. That includes making sure that there are links to your website as well as to your book listing. [Read more…]

9 Reasons Why You Should Be Using Google Hangouts

If you’re looking for a way to engage with a wider audience, Google Hangouts may be exactly what you’re looking for.

Google Hangouts image - Aleweb Social MarketingJust think of this… Instead of taking days, weeks or even months to go on a book tour, you could meet your fans and engage with your audience all from the comfort of your home.

You can invite people to join you live on camera and carry on a multi-participant conversation.

The chat feature allows you to share a link to where people could buy your latest book or product, while they’re On Air with you.

Since multiple people can be On Air at the same time, you can actually interact with your audience.

The possibilities are limitless. You just have to be a little creative. [Read more…]

Incorporating Holiday Events into Your Social Media Campaign

Today’s guest post is from Craig Robinson, an online writer for Qwaya, a facebook ad campaign tool. He loves to write different topics about social media tips and strategies. Besides writing, he also enjoys engaging with different communities and social forums. Be sure to follow him on twitter @Craig_Qwaya.

 

Aleweb Social Marketing - Social Media Christmas TreeThe mass expansion of social media has opened a lot of doors to individuals looking to make an impact with their brand through public speaking.

Whether you refer to it as the speaker community, the lecture circuit, or any other name, this is an old-school method of reaching an audience that dates back to Rome, with would-be Senators speaking to crowds in alleys about issues.

Today, of course, public speaking is incredibly modern and interactive.

Even though sites like Facebook and YouTube make it possible for public speakers to reach a much larger audience, it can still be quite difficult to attract a lot of people to an event.

The larger overall audience is a huge plus for any speaker. Though, for many authors and other solo speakers, a large live audience is what ultimately pays the bills. Below, we will look at a few different ways to turn that online following into an increase in live attendance for a holiday event. [Read more…]

Testimonials Are Music to a Brand’s Ears

5-star-rating for Aleweb Social MarketingWe hear it all the time. Word-of-mouth referrals are a brand’s bread-and-butter.

No amount of traditional or social marketing can equal the power of a friend who recommends a product, service, book or experience.

Today is the start of the new week. You may own your own business and look for these longed-for referrals, but how do you get them?

Have you ever heard the adage “It is better to give than receive?” When it comes to referrals and endorsements, this rule holds true.

You can ask friends and close acquaintances to endorse your product or service, but after a while you’ll run out of people to ask.

As JFK was quoted as saying “…ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” Or in this case “ask not who can recommend your business, but whose business you can recommend.”

Think over the past week.

Who have you interacted with? Where did you go to lunch? When you took your teenager to the mall, which stores did you go to? What book couldn’t you put down? Whose advice and support has been crucial to your own success?

I challenge you to come up with one thing each week for the next two months that you want to recommend to your friends. It can be a business that provided excellent customer service, an enjoyable experience, or that went out of their way to make your buying experience exceptional. Or it can be a book, play, concert, or any other experience that you loved.

Why two months?

I want you to establish the habit of looking for people and experiences you can appreciate. Enjoy that feeling. Appreciate the sense of gratitude. Pass it forward. Catch people “in the act of getting it right,” and let them know you’ve noticed.

It will change you too.

Being more focused on showing your appreciation for others will take the pressure off trying to get people to appreciate your brand too. You’ll internalize what you’re learning from brands that “do it right” and potentially improve what you’re doing as well.

Regardless, in giving, you will receive. And don’t be surprised if you start to see your own client testimonials increase as well.

So… Have you thought of someone for this past week?

Go ahead and think of one. We’ll wait for you…

Have it now?

Alright… Here’s the easy part. Go find that brand online. It doesn’t matter if it’s on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Angie’s List, Instagram, Google, their website or wherever else you feel comfortable. Just find their listing and post a review.

What should your review look like?

Write it as if you’re talking to your best friend. Tell them about your experience and what made it so special.

Businesses hear often when they’ve done something wrong. Give them a boost. Let them know when they’ve done something right so they can do it more often!

Wherever you posted that endorsement, share it with your friends.

People like to buy from brands they know, like and trust. Your recommendation tells your friends who you know, like and trust, and exactly why. And perhaps that experience is exactly what they were looking for too!

Share a link in the comments below to a brand that made you feel special recently and let us know how they did it.

3 Video SEO Tips You Can Use Right Now

Today’s guest post is from my friend, Chris Westfall, the National Elevator Pitch Champion. Enjoy his insights into how to use video SEO properly to share your compelling story.

Your brand deserves a great story, and these video SEO tips will help you to make your message matter.

While YouTube is the #2 search engine in the world, if you want your story to be heard, you’ve got to master video SEO tricks. But you may be surprised to know that YouTube may not be the best place for your video. Or, perhaps a better way to say it, there’s more than just YouTube, if you’re interested in the best video SEO.


Three Tips for Creating a Great Video Message Online

Once you’ve crafted your great video content, you still have to ensure it gets found! So, here are the next steps to follow.

  1. For Great Video SEO, put your message on Vimeo.com – It may seem counter-intuitive since Google owns YouTube, but videos on Vimeo.com are actually ranked higher in searches, in terms of video SEO. While the audience for Vimeo is smaller than YouTube, the SEO rankings are based on the relevance of the content. Google will often rank Vimeo.com above YouTube, even with similar keyword content. So, what’s the takeaway from this tip? Get yourself a Vimeo channel and post your content on Vimeo! And, if you don’t believe in the power of video SEO juice from Vimeo, make sure you include a link to your YouTube channel and post your content in multiple locations. While many will disparage duplicate content from an SEO perspective, video SEO is multiplied when your content is posted on multiple sites. Make sure Vimeo.com is part of your marketing mix for great video SEO.
  2. Get smart about your keywords and title, if you want great video SEO – Do you use Google’s keyword search tool to determine the name of your video? How about for the keywords you include in the video’s description? Using the keyword search tool from Google adwords will give you great insight into your video SEO. It’s counter-intuitive, but you want to be general (not specific) in order to be found. If you want your video to attract eyeballs, use the Google search tool to identify where the eyeballs are. In other words, use terms that are highly searched and include those words in both the title and the description for your video.
  3. Great video SEO starts with great links – Make sure that your description field includes at least one link. It’s a great idea to include a link to your website, your blog, or other content that’s meaningful (for example, if you have a Brand Yourself page for your personal brand, or an About.me page, or even a LinkedIn profile, you can include these links and improve your video SEO. Want to get really fancy? Then include a link to your vimeo.com page, and do the same from inside Vimeo.

Video SEO is What Your Brand Deserves

With these three ideas, you can create greater backlinks, identify additional resources for your viewers, and generate the kind of traffic that gets your message noticed. If you’ve taken the time to create some good video content, you deserve to have that content viewed. Use tools like YouTube and Vimeo to make sure your message gets out there.

And remember, there’s no substitute for great content. Video SEO is about understanding how optimization works, but great content is an even bigger boost to your brand.

About the Author:

Chris Westfall is the national elevator pitch champion, and the author of The NEW Elevator Pitch. His YouTube channel has nearly 700,000 video views and over 550 subscribers. His website is westfallonline.com and his YouTube channel is /westfallonline. His video production business is Your Online Video, Inc. and he regularly consults with high-growth businesses on effective video production.

The Ultimate Complete Final Social Media Sizing Cheat Sheet [INFOGRAPHIC]

One of the challenges of keeping up with social media is to ensure that you have attractive and consistent branding across all of the various platforms. No sooner do you find the right size for Facebook than the same image changes on Google+ and you need to tweak your images again.

Doing the research to find all the right sizes was always a pain. Various sites had inconsistent (and even incorrect) information, making it difficult to know where to turn or who to trust.

Thankfully, LunaMetrics has stepped forward and volunteered to be the keeper of all such mundane information, providing social marketers with a single place to turn for all their sizing needs. Thank you, LunaMetrics!

The Ultimate Complete Final Social Media Sizing Cheat Sheet LunaMetrics

Brought to you by the LunaMetrics blog.

 

The Fun Side of Social Media

Tara Alemany, the Bubble Lady, having fun in TanzaniaYou know, the fun thing about social media, whether you are using it for business or for pleasure, is that it can be an awful lot of fun. There are online events intended simply to be silly, that take us out of our shell and allow us to feel like kids again for a little while.

For instance, on Friday nights at 11 PM ET, there’s the TweetChat #slumberparty hosted by the lovely @DabneyPorte. It is often accompanied by creative hospitality, pillow fights, stolen Diva jets, great music spun by Wayne, and general merriment.

But once a year, there is the annual International Talk Like a Pirate Day on September 19. This celebration is enjoyed by celebrities like Dave Barry, and everyday folks like you and me.

This year’s celebration is the 10th anniversary of International Talk Like a Pirate Day, otherwise known as “ITLAPD.” With over 82,000 likes on their Facebook page, this online party is a well-attended one.

Yet its popularity and extends beyond Facebook. Their website talklikeapirate.com has a Google page rank of 6 and an Alexa ranking of 259,871 worldwide and 37,696 in the US. The banter and merriment make people want to join in the fun, and this translates to traffic.

For the fact that the majority of their activity is limited to a couple of months a year in the lead up to September 19 each year, that’s an incredible accomplishment.

So as you think about your business, what kind of fun and merriment can you bring to it? This extends beyond contests and polls, which bring limited one-time traffic, into the realm of entertainment. Take for instance the Old Spice viral videos that came out a couple of years ago with the Old Spice Man. They were shared far and wide because of their humorous nature. Don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself and create a fun environment. Take yourself too seriously and you’ll be considered an old fuddy-duddy. Nobody likes hanging out with a fuddy-duddy.

I know a new business that launched their YouTube video series with their blooper reel, instead of their commercials. They ended up generating a lot of interest in their YouTube channel before they ever put up a single commercial for their brand, simply because they were willing to laugh at themselves. Once they started putting their product commercials, they already had the attention of a rapt audience.

So in honor of making social media a bit more fun, here’s a brief video tutorial on how to change the language settings in Facebook to “English (Pirate).” The same technique can be used to change the Facebook language settings to anything else you choose as well.

So, give us an “Arr!” below, and scrawl somethin’ tellin’ us what your favorite way is to have fun with social media.