The Ultimate Guide to Outreach on Social Media: 4 Ways to Get Responses From the Popular and Famous

Selling is tough. It can be scary. It can be intimidating. But if you wanna succeed in this life, you’ve gotta learn how to do it. Howdy, Buffer readers—Sam here from Hustle Con, the startup conference for non-technical founders. We’ve been throwing conferences for a while now and that means we’ve done a TON of selling. Whether it’s a $10,000 sponsorship or 350 tickets to this year’s conference, we’ve learned the tactics to convince people to act. In this post, I’ll show you 4 step-by-step methods that use social media to connect with anyone and, most importantly, get them to act. Now, this doesn’t…

Continue Reading →

Improve Your Social Media Marketing With These 5 Quizzes: Understanding the Social Media Personality of You and Your Audience

Whenever I find myself doing research for new social media tips, the studies and resources I find are always fascinating. Not only is the intense depth of academia inspiring, the methods that researchers use for collecting information are so intriguing.

I often wish I could be involved in studies like these, just so I can take the tests, try the quizzes, and see how I’d be evaluated.

Some of the most fun ones to consider are those that involve different types of social sharing. They seek to prove a hypothesis, yet at the same time, they all get me wondering, “Well, where would I fall on this scale?”

Do you know the types of studies I’m talking about? I’ve collected several of my favorites in this article, and I’d encourage you to give them a try to see where you stand. (I converted one of them into a simple quiz, if you’ve got 30 seconds to give it a go!)

What type of social sharer are you? Here are five ways to find out more about your social media personality type.

Continue Reading →

How to Create a Social Media Marketing Plan From Scratch

When I went rock climbing for the first time, I had no idea what I was doing. My friends and I were complete newbies about ropes and rappelling and every other bit of jargon and technique that goes with climbing. We saw others doing it spectacularly well. We were thrilled at the thought of reaching the top of the climbing wall; we had no idea how to get there.

I’d imagine that a social media marketing plan could feel the same way.

If you’re starting from square one, it might feel equal parts thrilling and overwhelming. You know what you want to do and why. You can see that others have climbed the social media mountain; you’ve got few ideas how to get there yourself.

It’d help to have a plan.

We’ve shared before about different parts of a social media marketing plan—the data and research and personal experience behind what works on social media. Now we’re pleased to put it all into a cohesive, step-by-step blueprint that you can use to get started. If you need a social media marketing plan, start here.

Continue Reading →

The Science of Viral Content: Which Emotions Make Us Share?

Is creating the next viral hit on your marketing to-do list? If you’re in the marketing or social media industry, the answer is probably “Yes!” (and if you’re not, and the answer is probably still “Yes!”).

Campaigns that succeed are those that carefully consider what makes content go viral, including each element of the content as well as the emotional responses and psychological factors that prompt engagement.

But understanding these factors in and of themselves is only half the story; the other half is understanding your audience and the characteristics that influence their reactions.

In other words: To create a campaign that will be popular with men, women, Millennials and Baby Boomers, it’s going to take more than a few cat pictures and some Autotune.

Studying age and gender for viral markers

The latest research from Fractl dives deep into two demographics—age and gender—to determine how these attributes impact likes, shares, and your next viral success.

Continue Reading →

30+ Social Media Monitoring Tools, Tips, And Strategies: A #Bufferchat Recap

Bufferchat 7.9.14 ShannonOur latest weekly #bufferchat on Twitter was Wednesday, July 9, where we focused on social media monitoring and welcomed Shannon Byrne, Content and PR Manager for Mention, as our special guest.

Check out the full Storify recap to discover a whole host of awesome people you should follow on Twitter.

How important is listening?

We started off the conversation by asking about the importance of social media monitoring in participant’s online strategies.

The resounding response was that listening is a key part of learning and connecting with your community.

Continue Reading →

Achieve Perfect Social Media Volume, Quality, Voice, and Topics Every Time with the Consistency Pizza

Just the other day someone introduced me to a blogpost that could have fit right in on the pages of KISS Metrics or HubSpot. Instead, it was published on a brand new blog. And I started thinking, how might this blog get from unknown to well-known if it’s already got quality figured out?

Provided we’ve got the goods, what’s to help you or me stand out from the crowd?

Quality, in many ways, has become a commodity—a mass-produced, ubiquitous good in large supply. Social media marketing and content marketing have evolved to the point that lots of people really good at creating quality work. This is great news for consumers. But what does it mean for us marketers?

If quality is a commodity, perhaps consistency is the key.

That’s my theory at least. Let me explain more.

Consistency pizza: 4 keys to bringing people back for more

Let’s start off with a definition: What are we talking about when we talk about consistency?

What’s the first thing that comes to your mind? For me, consistency conjures images of schedules and deadlines (probably due to journalism classes hardwired into my brain). And a consistent schedule is definitely part of the equation. But there’s a lot more to it as well.

In my mind, ideal consistency should be a four-part formula (or a four-slice pizza, if you prefer):

  1. Consistent volume
  2. Consistent quality
  3. Consistent voice
  4. Consistent topics

Continue Reading →

10 Time-Saving Social Media Tools for a Productive Summer

Imagine you’ve got a week’s vacation planned this summer (lucky you!), and you’d love nothing more than for your social media efforts to keep humming right along while you’re gone.

No problem. There are a handful of social media tools that can assist with your out-of-office marketing. Automation techniques can help fill your queue, and the 10 tools below can help you keep tabs on your profiles, engage with your audience, and communicate with your team.

Here are 10 time-saving social media tools (actually, more like 28–each featured tool has a few similar alternatives I’ve listed) to keep in mind whether you’re on the beach or onto other tasks.

(What tools did I miss that help you hack your productivity? I’d love to hear about them in the comments.)

Continue Reading →

The Best Tools and Sources for Visuals in Social Media: A #Bufferchat Recap

bufferchatSocial media is getting more and more visual.

We just can’t get enough photos, videos, GIFs, infographics, and charts. It’s something we’ve blogged about before and certainly something we’ll cover again, given the momentum of sites such as Instagram and Pinterest.

At Buffer, we even make multiple original images for most of our blog posts, and our favorite tool for that job is awesome image-maker Canva.

Recently we invited Peg Fitzpatrick, Head of Social Strategy at Canva, to join us in for a #bufferchat on Twitter to talk about visuals in social media.

Here is a recap of our chat and some of the great tools, resources and tips mentioned!

How do images/videos/infographics/etc. fit into your social media strategy?

Nearly everyone who responded indicated that visuals were a major part of their strategy or something they planned to make an even larger part.

Continue Reading →

Why We Stopped Focusing on Direct Social Media ROI: A New Way of Viewing Conversions

Do you measure the return on your social media investment?

It seems blasphemous not to, yet that’s exactly the direction we’re experimenting with at Buffer.

We’ve recently shifted our focus toward email list building along with continued traffic growth. These metrics are common enough; it’s what we’ve stopped measuring in lieu of email that is most unique and notable.

We no longer focus on social media ROI. It’s strange but true. We’re a social media blog that does not emphasize social media ROI in our stats and strategy. What gives? Let’s take a closer look.

Continue Reading →

10 Surprising and Important Social Media Stats You Need To Know

We love to make decisions and form strategies based on statistics. It’s why we A/B test and how we change directions on our social sharing.

Who doesn’t love a good statistic, especially one that has an actionable next step?

You’re likely to find a sea of statistics for social media—I know I’m amazed at how many are out there. My favorite finds are those that are just a bit surprising or unique or even counterintuitive.

I’ve saved some of the best social media stats I’ve found over the past few months and I’m happy to share them here with you. Keep reading to see some fun, surprising, and (you guessed it) actionable stats for how you can better share on social media. Got any stats that you’ve found helpful? I’d love to hear about them in the comments.

Continue Reading →