post-tops

Make Posts on Your Blog, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+ More Dynamic with Animated GIFs

Let me start by saying I’m not a fan of the typical bouncing, blinking, spinning, seizure inducing animated GIFs we all know and hate. Those aren’t the type of images I’m recommending you use but the truth is that animated GIFs do get your attention and can be very effective if they’re different than the usual images everyone is used to seeing. You can’t even take your eyes off of that tranquil waterfall, can you? :)

state-of-mind

Twitter recently added support for animated GIFs up to 3MB in size and they also play and work great on Google+ and Pinterest. And of course, as you can see, they’re an excellent addition to blog posts.

A great way to use them is to demonstrate something. Create a short animated tutorial on how to change a tire or bait a hook or tie your shoes. Use them as dynamic moving backgrounds for inspirational messages instead of static photos, like I’ve done in the example I’ve included here. Instead of static photos of your products, switch to short animated GIFs showing them in use.

There are lots of ways to create animated GIFs, including Photoshop, but anyone will be able to (more…)

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like-to-win

How to Use Facebook Contests to Generate Page Likes Despite the Fangate Ban

I’m going to assume you’ve already heard that as of Nov. 5, fangated tab pages will no longer work. Requiring someone to Like your Page in order to enter a contest is no longer an option.

The Fangate Ban is a Good Thing

In the long run this will be better for most Pages that were running contests giving away iPads, big screen TVs or even cars because the only thing that accomplished was to add a bunch of fans who had zero interest in the content and only (more…)

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like-gate

How to Comply with Facebook’s Fangate Ban and Still Get Page Likes

In case you haven’t heard yet, Facebook recently announced that in a couple months they will be removing the fangate option on third party app tabs to prevent Page owners from offering incentives just to get Page likes. We can still use landing and contest pages but will no longer be able to incentivize Likes by requiring users to like our Page to win something or get a free eBook, newsletter, etc.

Although I’ve never been a fan of using a fangate to force users to like a Page to get something just to add fans, I do think they had their uses. I also didn’t see anything wrong with offering a newsletter subscription or free eBook to people after they like your Page to grow your email list. But don’t worry, I’m about to show you how you can still use a landing page to (more…)

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like-follow-featured

Facebook’s Like and Follow Buttons Confuse Users and Hurt Pages

I like ice cream. I like it a lot, but I don’t have a reason to follow ice cream. I have some favorite brands and I might want to let Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream know I’m a fan of their product by liking their Facebook Page but does that mean I want to read what they post in my News Feed? Maybe, maybe not.

Lots of people liked Jesus. They followed him everywhere because they wanted to hear what he had to say. They liked him and they followed him. Did some of them like what he had to say and yet didn’t want their friends or the Romans to know they (more…)

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stand-out-shoes

Give Your Blog a Signature Look with Custom Branded Graphics

Do you create custom graphics for your blog posts or do you just throw in a stock photo that sort of has something to do with what you wrote about? I’ll be honest, I’ve been doing the second one and the crazy thing is, I’m a designer.

So, starting with this post, I’m going to create a custom title graphic for all of my blog posts from now on and I think you should too. Here’s why. (more…)

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50s-family

Will Commenting on Blogs Soon be Something We Did in the Old Days?

Are we seeing a new trend away from comments on blogs and toward using social media networks to add to the conversation instead?

Rewind a few years to before Twitter and Facebook were the behemoths they are today and the only way to voice our opinion or participate in a discussion on a blog was by using the comments. Then along came social networking and suddenly (more…)

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post-tops

How to Make Your Round Google+ Profile Photo Square

g+square-post

When Google+ decided to use “circles” as the name for the groups we put people in I think they took the metaphor too far when they put our profile photos in circles so we all look like floating bubbles. In many cases, forcing a square photo to fit in a round hole creates an awkward image. On business pages, companies with square logos end up with round ones.

Well, if you’re like me and just don’t like being forced into a circle when you feel like a square, I have a solution. It’s not a perfect solution and as you can see from the before and after images, you will end up with a slightly smaller photo but it’s a small price to pay for freedom.

g+square-beforeafter

If your company logo is square, keep it that way.

linkedin

Step by step:

I use Photoshop but you’ll be able to use this same process in most good photo editing programs. (more…)

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resonate

There’s a Formula to Make Your Content Resonate with Your Audience, You Just Need to Find It

Have you noticed that some of your social media content gets a much higher engagement than the rest? Sometimes even things that surprised you? It’s not always content you expected to do especially well and yet things that you expected to go crazy viral hardly get any attention at all.

The trick is to look at a lot of your posts and figure out which ones resonated with your audience and which ones didn’t and why. Was it a particular wording or a certain type of image? Once you identity what is working the best, start applying that style to all of your posts.

We’ll always have some things that do better than others and there’s no formula we can follow that will work 100% of the time but why continue doing the same old thing when a little thought and planning can improve your results?

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advocate-evangelist

The Power of Social Media Is Not In Selling Directly but In Inspiring and Motivating Others to Do It for You

Social media works best when we can get others to do the selling for us so one of your main goals should be finding ways to turn happy customers into enthusiastic customers.

Before you spend too much time worrying about posting on your social pages and waiting for them to go viral ask yourself if you have a really great product and have you established a memorable and solid brand. Once you have something people will love they’ll be happy to share your social media content with their friends. (more…)

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