Another 'Expert', only I'm not
Pat Rhoads - Nonprofit Marketing & Social Media Professional
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My 3 Tips: How I maintain engagement on Facebook without paying to boost posts
Strategically Embracing Ignorance
For Twitter newbies: the #hashtag explained
My take: 3 ways Facebook's USERS are causing it's decline
When will they learn?

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Another 'Expert', only I'm not

My 3 Tips: How I maintain engagement on Facebook without paying to boost posts

Much is being written lately about the death of organic, non-paid reach and engagement on Facebook. And with good reason: Facebook has continually tweaked their algorithm, moving more and more towards restricting the reach of free content by brand pages and 'forcing' them to pay for ads.

As a Facebook user, I appreciate Zuckerberg's rationale (at least based on his public statements) that they're trying to protect users' experience by not having them bombarded by content from brands.

Strategically Embracing Ignorance

When I was about 27 years old, Someone told me about a local semi-pro football team that was holding tryouts. Now, I never played formal football at any level, just pickup games with friends. But I felt like I had a basic skill set for the position I wanted to play (receiver), was in decent shape, and I wanted to play BADLY.

I showed up for tryouts, and found that most of the guys were between 18-23, looking to hone their skills before trying out for college programs or possibly even a pro team. There were a few 'older' guys, but all of them had played for years, and just wanted to extend their opportunity to play a game they loved.

For Twitter newbies: the #hashtag explained

Chances are if you're new to twitter, one of the most confusing aspects of reading tweets are the hashtags. (For the REALLY new, hashtags are words or groups of words immediately preceded by the # symbol, such as #marketing.)

I am going to break down for you what the basic types of hashtags are, and what they're used for.

1. Keywords
It's common to see certain keywords hashtagged in tweets. For example, if someone is tweeting about marketing, they might include #marketing in the tweet.

Why?

My take: 3 ways Facebook's USERS are causing it's decline

I've been seeing some articles and commentaries talking about how Facebook will decline or is already starting to. Many of these articles are addressing some of the weaknesses in Facebook (such as mobile advertising and privacy issues) that they feel will hurt their future. But I want to talk about something I see as a much bigger threat...
 
Facebook's USERS. That's right, your Facebook friends are going to drive it into the ground.
 
Facebook thus far has worked hard to protect the users from too many ads or ads that are too intrusive, so as to maximize the user experience.

When will they learn?

I came into my own professionally in the late 90's and early 2000's. It was around that time that websites were really starting to take off, and the big questions being asked by business were:
 
  1. Should my business have a website?
  2. If we do, how will we monetize it?
  3. Who will build and manage it?
  4. Where will we find the budgetary and staffing resources for this?
 
In response, many so-called 'web experts' popped up, people claiming to be proficient in building "winning" websites with programming and design backgrounds.

3 Criteria for Your Social Media Spokesperson

One of the questions I hear being asked is "Who in our organization should handle our social media?" In my case, I usually hear this asked by those who aren't active in social media and are from small businesses and nonprofits. I have actually heard a number of people say things like, "I was thinking of having our intern launch our Facebook page/Twitter profile and get it started." Wow, bad idea.
 
Here are three key criteria I think you need to keep in mind when deciding who is going to handle your social media.

Personal tragedy and social media

I've been writing on this blog for about a year, and active as a social media professional full time for about a year and a half. Before that, I used it part time for work and quite a bit on my own for personal use.
 
During that time, I learned the ropes, and tried to become a savvy social media user. I felt like I had a ways to go, but that overall I was getting pretty good at this social media thing. After all, someone was paying me to do it full time, and I was building some great relationships.

Twitter: Balancing Conversation & Content

Conversation is a two way street (free clip art from MS: man yelling at laptop)I've been using Twitter fairly extensively for a couple of years now. And one of the first things I came to learn is that simply sending out tweets with my content was not really the best way to use Twitter. Like other social media channels, it's, well, social, which means Twitter should be used to engage people. In practice, this means that your tweet stream should be a balance on conversation and content.
 
Typically, I see Twitter users go wrong in the content direction. Tweet after tweet with links to their blogs or to articles.

Is Facebook driving users to Google+?

 
Facebook's new changes announcement atf8are old news to most of us in social/
interactive media, but many of the changes have not yet been seen by the vast majority of users (primarily the Timeline). What will happen once they are?
 
Googleplus_facebookIn a post a couple of months ago, I outlined three reasonswhy I thought Google+ would fail. Chief among these was that I felt the vast majority of users wouldn't migrate from Facebook to Google+ without very good reason. What reasons might drive vast numbers of users from one platform to another?

4 Rules of Successful Facebook Engagement

 
I've seen a number of lists recently which tell you what to do and not to do in social media. Many of them have been pretty good. And of those, quite a few have dealt with Facebook specifically.
Facebook_logo 
In my work, Facebook is the primary social media tool we use (though we are also active onTwitter), and I've learned a few things that I thought I'd pass along to you. For the most part, I'm going to avoid most of the things you typically see on these lists, and deal with some I haven't seen much yet.
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