One of the very best things we did this year was hire Tracy Noble, who has become our business manager. She has her own business and we are not her only clients, but she has become integral to our success. (In other words, she makes us look good and keeps us on track!)
We're looking forward to even more great things happening in 2015. Next week, we'll give you a little preview of how that's going to look and what you have to look forward to...I'm having a hard time not spilling the beans now!
From Lara, Tracy, and myself, we hope you are having a lovely holiday season!
I may have a bit of an obsession with YouTube. It's a hobby and I love it, and I can chalk it all up as business research now that I'm writing this blog post!
In the year or so that I've found a lot of the big name YouTubers (those are the ones who make substantial livings off their YouTube fame) time and time again I've seen that most of them are doing a lot of what we advise our clients to do and slowly but surely it has turned into Internet fame.
I'm not promising internet fame here, but let's pull out the important pieces:
Good YouTubers figure out what their audiences want and they provide it. It also needs to be in line with what they want at the same time for it to be successful and for them to want to keep doing it.
Music covers are one my favourite things to watch on YouTube. High quality covers of recent popular songs are gold for a musician making videos (I make no apologies for loving Taylor Swift's new song. I even like the original!).
I could post examples of great YouTube content all day from comedy to musicians to cooking shows, but that would be too distracting so I'll just share one more. I made this meal and it was amazing and now I can't get enough of all the Sorted Food videos.
Most YouTubers have a schedule they stick to. Grace Helbig of It's Grace made a video Monday through Friday for years and has only recently gone down to three videos a week.
Hank and John Green (the vlogbrothers) post a video every Tuesday and Friday.
Fans expect the content and if they go to the channel on those days and there aren't videos they are disappointed.
It's not fast
A lot of these people have had YouTube channels for years. It's take awhile to get to the point where they now make enough money to make YouTube (and all that it's brought them) their career, but slow and steady wins the race.
Opportunities come knocking
While a lot of YouTubers make money on their content alone, they also make money from advertising and from companies, such as Patreon and Subbable that have popped up to help content creators find ways to make money online. For example, Walk off the Earth gets a dollar from me every time they make a new video through Patreon. In addition to this, there are also lots of opportunities that pop up as a result of their internet success, including:
Opportunities to be on Broadway and Tours
TV show deals
Consistent quality content aimed at your audience is what helps grow your reputation online. Whether you're creating content to help business owners learn to use social media or you're just out to entertain, it always come back to quality content.
Leave a comment and let me know if you've seen anyone online slowly grow to huge success with the delivery of consistent valuable content. And also let me know if you have any favourite YouTube channels because I'm always looking to check out more!
For many small business owners, staying on top of social media can be challenging at times so the thought of adding one more social network to the mix may seem like a daunting task. However, the benefits of having a Google+ business page and community may outweigh the drawbacks of having to set one up (which really isn’t that hard anyway).
Google+ is owned by Google, so what happens on G+ can actually impact your standing in search engine ranking and improve your search engine optimization (SEO). The reason for this is that Google gives a great deal of weight to the social behaviors and recommendations from your connections on Google+, especially at the local level. In fact, Google treats Google+ pages as regular sites. You can check this out yourself by doing a search and see what pages come up. Often, information from G+ pages is ranked higher than other, non-Google sites.
As a small business, having a Google+ Business page and working to increase your connections (circles), by sharing reviews, posting YouTube video, images and posts, you can actually increase your visibility in search results. Another bonus is that by analyzing those in your circles, Google will be able gather more and more targeted information about what your customers are looking for. Google will incorporate recommended and shared sites from people you are connected to on G+, which can go a long way in ensuring that their friends and circles will be more likely to find your business in a search.
For your customer, this is a good thing. It means that they may actually be presented with search results that not only are they more interested in but with endorsements from trusted friends and colleagues who have vouched for the business/product/place etc.
Let’s look at it this way. Say you do a search for the best local restaurant. In your search results, you see that your friend has shared a great review of the restaurant and vouches for the restaurant’s cleanliness. Can you think of better validation than the endorsement from a trusted friend?
By creating a page and reaching out to other G+ pages to increase visibility and connections, you will not only help establish yourself in the local community where you do business but you can engage with other, complementary businesses to become a local referral source. Using reviews, +1’s and discussions on group pages, you will be able to continue to build your community, and your brand.
So, what are you waiting for? Go claim your spot on Google+! We’d love to connect with you. We could even Hangout!
Over the week we go through a lot of content - news and blog posts, how tos and conceptual posts on the state of the internet. Every Sunday we share some of our favourites with you.
Check out the links and let us know in the comments if you have any questions or if you read any great posts this week!
I’m back and had a great time on my first real family vacation! Karen did a great job making sure you all still got great content to check out while I was gone! :)
Sesame Street is the first non-profit to hit 1 billion views on YouTube. I can’t say I’m surprised - theirs is one of the few channels I subscribe to and watch not only with my kids but on my own on a regular basis. So much fun content! I love how they celebrated the milestone! (Here’s another one of my favourites)
Facebook advertising can be a tricky thing, but also a really good thing. Amy Porterfield is an amazing resource for all things Facebook and I especially find her Facebook ad information very informative. This week she shared 7 tips on Facebook ads.
I couldn’t help but laugh at the title of this one: Is the Harlem Shake Stupid? (Social Fresh) I don’t think the answer to that question is hard. I am so tired of this meme and I don’t want to see it anymore, but Jason Keath makes some really interesting points that businesses can use going forward.
It was a week of big changes. In the case of Google+, the changes are enormous (ReadWrite). But let’s be honest - there really isn’t a huge number of people who care about the changes Google+ made. It’s the changes to Facebook Newsfeed that are the really big news of this week. We’re going to write about the newsfeed announcement this week, but Jon Loomer’s overview will give you a good idea of what’s coming.
The most obvious number that shows up in Facebook Metrics is reach. Unfortunately, its value is definitely up for debate. Check out what Danny Brown has to say about reach. I think it’s worth considering.
The Media Mesh
What you might have missed this week on the Media Mesh:
This one is web-based, so it’s operating system agnostic. And I think it’s my latest favourite website. It’s called Content Idea Generator and I think it’s brilliant. Even if it doesn’t work precisely, I love that I can come up with ideas faster thanks to the push this nifty little tool gives me.
Leave us a comment and tell us what some of your favourite reads were this week!
Do you need a break now? That’s a lot, but I’m not done.
Related to content, it’s important to know when to stop using a social network (Hubspot). Joining or continuing with a social network for the sake of having a presence alone isn’t reason enough to keep going.
Your website is your business’ hub on the Internet. It’s your virtual front door and the place that will often give prospects their first impression of your business and you as a business owner. That’s why it’s important to make a really good first impression and avoid these web design mistakes (HubSpot).
Every now and then, I go to the TED website and just start browsing. I love watching TED talks. I’ve learned so much and been so inspired by the eloquent words of the speakers. Mitch Joel compiled a list of TED talks to help you re-imagine your business (Six Pixels of Separation) and I have seen a few, but I need to go through and watch them all again.
We’ve all seen the Harlem Shake videos. It’s the meme of the moment. Personally, it’s run it’s course for me. One video was plenty. But this? This is brilliant. (Marketing Land). YouTube took something that was becoming very run-of-the-mill and made it interesting again.
You’ll likely notice that our apps will have a business focus and not necessarily a social media focus. These apps help us stay organized so we have time to do social media. We’ve recently begun using a tool called Asana, which has become our task/project manager. It’s a lifesaver for us because all those tasks that used to go into emails and texts now get slotted into Asana. We can get reminders and set deadlines, which I happen to find valuable.
That’s it for this week. I hope you had a good one! Let us know what you’ve been reading in the comments.