How to Spot Trends for Social Posting

Part of social media is listening. Just like in any real-life conversation, what are people talking about? This “social listening” is a huge part of any social media strategy to be part of the world-wide conversation flow. It can also help to avoid posting content at the wrong time, where it may be viewed as offensive because of a current event or issue.

whats trendingI was learned from a guest speaker during my time as a student at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, that to be a good journalist meant being widely read. From that point on, the power of that truth has given me the ability to have a broader understanding of current events on varying levels. This tip now helps me as an account executive at Lukas Partners, when managing social media for clients. I keep tabs on what is happening locally, regionally, nationally and worldwide to stay on top of what’s trending.

Of course, I don’t troll the internet 24/7 trying to keep up-to-date on trending topics. I have some sites that I rely on that could be beneficial to you and your organization.

The first is Google Trends. Google tabulates what is trending based off of search history. Think of how often you look something up on Google. Multiply this by the billions and you have the data that Google uses to figure out what’s popular. It even narrows the data down to the state level, so if you’re in Nebraska, you can find out what Nebraskans are searching the most online.
The second is Twitter. On the desktop version of Twitter, there is a pane on the left side of the
screen that shows what’s trending. Same with Facebook, except it’s on the right.

If you want to take Twitter trends to a regional level, Trendsmap is a great way to see what’s trending based off of regional location.

Another way for post ideas or to see what’s popular on the internet and social media is to go the Buzzfeed route. While all the content that’s listed is their own, Buzzfeed is a good gauge for content based off their huge popularity.

And finally, there is no substitute for real-life listening. What are people talking about in your social circles? What are they posting online? Sometimes inspiration and motivation can be right under your nose.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

How to Make Headlines Sell, Not Tell

When people click, share and retweet links on social media, they are typically drawn in by the title of the article or blog post itself. The title, or headline, is not only the one line summation of your content, but it’s a one-second elevator pitch that hopefully leaves readers wanting more.

Headlines are tough. There’s no doubt about it.  How do you summarize content in a way that makes it attractive to readers?  During my time as a journalist, the best line I picked up to describe a headline would be “sell, don’t tell.” You want to sell readers what you’ve written, but don’t tell them everything, otherwise your story is just a title.

wordpress-265132_1920As an account executive at Lukas Partners, I call on my headline writing skills often to make content sell and spread on social media.

Here’s how I do it: Before I
write a single word of content, I think of how to sum it up in one sentence. I then take that sentence and figure out how to use adjectives or different wording to make it more attractive. What would I need to read to make myself click on this? I ask.

I’ve done it the opposite way; just writing the article when I can’t think of a title and that just makes it more difficult. I would not recommend this.

As far as irresistible words to use, think about Buzzfeed for a second. Buzzfeed made a name for itself purely based off of its headlines a few years ago. The list style headline is a force to be reckoned with. “Five Ways to Spruce up Your Headlines” would be a Buzzfeed type of headline for this article.

Another way to create interest is by using “you” or “your” in your headline. It makes the reader automatically
feel more connected to your writing because it’s more personal.

“How to” is another phrase that gets attention. Other adjectives that work are “discover” or “learn” as in “Learn How to Create an Irresistible Headline.” These create a sense of urgency and a veil of mystique.

Still stumped and can’t figure it out? I’ve always leaned on colleagues for help when that happens. There’s no need to be discouraged. Sometimes you’re just too close to it and it muddles in the brain.  A person who is less close to the writing can throw out a headline or title that completely makes sense or the brainstorming can help you clear the fog and regain a focus to create the headline that sells.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

Email Signatures Designed to Promote Your Organization

It is estimated that 205 billion emails are sent worldwide per day. An email is a quick way to get a message out or it can be a more in-depth way to communicate a broad topic.

As an account executive at Lukas Partners, I send multiple emails outside and within my organization each day. On each email, I include a signature.link-to-web-site

Gone are the days when an email signature included only your name, email and phone number. Today, your email signature is more than just a name, your signature is an extension of your brand.

Using emails to beef up awareness for social media, your company blog, upcoming events and your website is now commonplace. It makes sense, given how many emails are sent per day.

Just like a written signature, email signatures should be unique to your organization and include information not only on how to contact, but how to interact, as well.

For instance, our Lukas Partners signature contains two links to our web site. One at the top on our logo and one in the text at the bottom. We also have links to Facebook and Twitter.

One of the best uses, besides social media and website linking, is event promotion. Adding a link or a hyperlinked bit of text or photo/graphic at the bottom of an email signature to highlight an upcoming event or fundraiser is a great way to get the people you are already communicating with on board and interested.

Organizations also use email signatures for self-promotion beyond links, by including promotional videos underneath their contact info. These videos explain what they have to offer through imagery.

If you don’t have an artistic flair and want your new signature to be more self-promotional, I would recommend using Hubspot’s free email signature generator. They make it for you, and the result is the signature looks professional.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

Invite YouTube Personalities to Support Your Brand

Some new suggested YouTube techniques may turn your current YouTube strategy upside down and backwards. In a recent article, Ragan’s PR Daily recommends less people involved, less story boarding and more of a “go-with-the-flow” mindset.

Peeling back the layers obstructing creativity could result in some pretty cool opportunities.

Partner with people who have a good following who already like and post about your organization. Taco Bell has recently done this, inviting a popular YouTube personality into their test kitchen to create something unique. It’s a more organic marketing technique for organizations.

YouTube also exhibitionis beta testing a new interface for video bloggers, or vloggers, that would allow them to be more interactive with their subscribers.

YouTube Community is a tab that allows vloggers to add text, live videos, images, animated GIFs and other elements to enhance the experience.

Exactly when the tab will go site-wide has yet to be announced.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

The Latest Client News

U.S. Cellular Seeks Nominations for “Most Valuable Coach”MVC_Round_4

Our client U.S. Cellular is dedicated to the communities it serves. U.S. Cellular is giving people the opportunity to honor a current high school football head coach who has made a profound impact on them, their school or community. To nominate a coach, visit TheMostValuableCoach.com. At the end of the program, two coaches will be honored at the Jan. 1 Under Armour High School All-America Game, broadcasting live on ESPN. In addition, each school will receive $5,000 to use however they choose.

 

childrens-monster-mash

Monster Mash Aims to Scare Away Childhood Obesity

On Sunday, Oct. 23, Children’s Hospital & Medical Center and Suburban Omaha Rotary Club will host the Monster Mash one-mile walk, 5k run and kids dash at Rockbrook Village, 108th Street and West Center Road. Proceeds will support childhood obesity treatment programs at Children’s. The event is open to all ages, and Halloween costumes are welcome. Register online or find more information at MonsterMashOmaha.com.

 

 

Wounded Warriors Family Support High Five Tour Continues Nationwide Trek

Since May, Wounded Warriors Family Support has traveled across the country on its seventh annual High Five Tour, which recently made a stop in Indianapolis. During the five-month tour, the 2016 Ford Shelby GT350 will travel more than 26,000 miles and visit more than 100 cities during stops in 48 states. The High Five Tour’s goal is to not only say thank you to veterans for their service, but also raise $1 million to provide veteran programs to combat wounded veterans and their families. The tour ends in late October.

The Best Ways to Use Social Media to Promote Your Event

eventFacebook and Twitter can be an asset when promoting an upcoming event, whether it’s a “thank you” event or a fundraiser. They also can be a great tool to generate buzz while the event is happening.

As an account executive at Lukas Partners, I’m always on the lookout for ways social media can help our clients.

Social Media Today offers great tips on how to best use the platforms to get results, and I am weighing in with my insights.

The first step is to outline your budget. What do you have to spend on marketing your event in advance? Make sure some of it is allotted to sponsoring and boosting posts on social media.

Paying to promote the event to the right audience can help build participation in a big way. Organizations can create an event page on Facebook and circulate the event through paid placements on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

We recommend encouraging participants tweet and/or post that they are going to the event. Think of a short and easy hashtag to use on social media in relation to your event. Ask them to share, use the hashtag and invite friends.

You could link to the event in your bios on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn and create a dedicated profile or timeline photo for Facebook and other platforms to drive people to your upcoming event. You could also put the link in your email signature and remove it when the event has passed.

We also recommend tweeting and posting early and often about events. These posts can be scheduled early using sites like Tweetdeck or Hootesuite to target the best times for your audience.

Allowing people to send texts, photos and tweets to large screens at your event engages audience members. One of the events Lukas Partners manages is Bank of the West Celebrates America, a free concert and fireworks show in Memorial Park sponsored by the bank to thank the community and honor America’s Independence Day.

Before the concert, audience members set up blankets and enjoy the park. They are able to text and tweet with a hashtag and see their pictures and tweets on the large screens by the stage. This increases participation, and it’s just plain cool to see your message on the big screen.

Another option is to retweet and reply to people using the hashtag during the event.

Also, it’s a good idea to tweet and post on social media a few times from your organization’s accounts during the event about what’s happening. Use the event hashtag, post pictures, videos and key takeaways. You could also stream part of it live.

Of course, don’t forget about people who can’t attend. Experts say keeping others in the loop about what’s happening through social media or allowing them to participate in some way in their hometown can really boost engagement in the event.

And finally, it’s recommended to send out a thank you after everything is said and done. Including stats on how many attended or how much money was raised to pique the interest of people who did or did not attend.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

Outlook Nebraska Rolled Out To Raise Awareness Using Facebook Live on National Toilet Paper Day

To celebrate National Toilet Paper Day Aug. 26, our client, Outlook Nebraska, loaded up a truck with 12,000 rolls of toilet paper to deliver to Heart Ministry Center, Youth Emergency Services and Heartland Family Service. At each stop, they donated 4,000 rolls of toilet paper.

The goals of the “Toilet Paper Tour” were to give back to those in need and to raise awareness of the capabilities of the blind and visually impaired.

Outlook Nebraska did four “live broadcasts” on Facebook throughout the morning, ultimately resulting in a cumulative total of nearly 10,000 views. They were successful in making untitled-design-6a seemingly ordinary calendar day event memorable.

The live videos showed some of the action happening during the stops and featured representatives from each nonprofit recipient.

Each video was around a minute long and served to not only be a fun inside look at what was happening, but also informed the audience about Outlook Nebraska and their mission.

The videos were pre scripted and spokespeople from each organization were pre-arranged.

The “Toilet Paper Tour” was covered by local media, as well; WOWT, KMTV and the Omaha World-Herald each ran stories.

Facebook, Apple CEOs Aim Sights at Virtual and Augmented Reality

With the popularity of the “augmented reality” game, Pokémon Go, CEOs are setting their sights on the virtual future. The game set all-time records for downloads and got people excited and talking about augmented reality. An image recently surfaced of President Obama trying out a virtual reality headset. That also increased awareness of what could be coming down the virtual pathway in the future.

There are ore than one billion video views per day on Facebook (1)Virtual reality totally immerses someone in a situation or setting whereas augmented reality adds a layer to reality as it already exists.

During a town-hall meeting in Rome, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and Founder of Facebook called VR and AR the most social platform that has ever existed. Facebook is looking at ways to use the technology already. Zuckerberg expects both to be mainstream within five or 10 years.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has stated that Apple is expanding their reach with augmented reality and investing in it big time. He sees it as the technology of the future. “I think AR is extremely interesting and sort of a core technology. So, yes, it’s something we’re doing a lot of things on behind that curtain that we talked about,” he said.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

Make Your Social Media Click

Even with the best intentions, sometimes posts on social media aren’t as successful as you imagined.

As an account executive at Lukas Partners, I make sure clients get the best results for their social media content.

Here are tips to strengthen engagement:ClicksBlog (1)

Keep posts brief and to the point. Wordy posts may sound nice, but in reality, the average person who sees it on social media won’t commit the time to read all the way through. You want them to click on your link, so try not to leave it all out on the table. Think of the post as an appetizer and the link to your content as the main course. A catchy opening line can pull people in and make them want to spend more time with you, clicking your link to read more.

Tell a simple story. Your post should have a beginning, middle and end like any story. But try and keep it simple by avoiding your industry’s jargon: words that you wouldn’t normally use in everyday conversation. They don’t play well on social media.

Most clicks are generated because there’s genuine interest in the topic. Ask yourself this question before you post: What value does this have for people on social media? This question alone can help you decide if it’s right to put out there and how to market it on social media so people will want to read more.

Talk to people, not at them. The way posts are worded matter. “This is something you might be interested in…” or “you might want to sit down for this one…” Make it about them, not your organization.

Keep it conversational. Try to carry the same voice throughout all posts. People recognize organizations through their online voice. Usually this is best achieved by having one person handle the social posting at your organization.

Create a clear call to action. What would you like people to do with your post? Read more? Watch this? Being direct helps generate more clicks than being indirect.

A final way to create a good attention-grabbing post is to make sure you have a great image or video to go with it. Visuals are huge on social media; people would rather look at an image or watch a video than read what you have to say.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

Facebook Helps Nonprofits Gain Traction With New Tools

The top story in the August 2016 Lukas Partners newsletter was about how Facebook has been testing a couple of new tools to help nonprofits.

As an account executive at Lukas Partners, I am constantly thinking of ways to help our clients achieve success through social media.

Social media today is yesterday’s web site homepage. More and more, people are seeking out organizations through social media first and being directed to the dedicated web site after.

One of the tools that Facebook has been testing allows supporters of a nonprofit to create a page for a fundraiser. It’s similar to an event page, but the biggest difference is a button that allows an interested donor to contribute to the cause, right then and there.Facebookdonate

According to the site, “Fundraisers allow supporters to set up a dedicated page to share their story, tell others about a nonprofit’s mission and rally around a fundraising goal.”

Facebook also created a donate button that can be added directly to a nonprofit’s page, making it simple and easy for users to donate. It’s located right where the current call to action button is. So instead of “email us” it would say “donate.”

Facebook does not do this automatically, nonprofits must sign up to gain access to the new tools.

This is an exciting way for nonprofits to start getting onto the social landscape in a larger capacity.

We send out a monthly newsletter detailing the latest trends we see happening in social media and beyond. To subscribe, click here.

About the blogger:

LeAnne Morman is an account executive at Lukas Partners. As a former journalist, LeAnne has a great deal of experience with all types of media, including social and digital formats. She works with organizations on a regular basis to help them use digital and social media to their advantage.

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