Managing Social Media with Hootsuite

By Ashleigh Cue

Screenshot of Hootsuite website taken by Ashleigh Cue
Screenshot of Hootsuite website taken by Ashleigh Cue

With so many social media platforms, it can be extremely hard to keep up with it all: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google Plus. They are all constantly putting out new information from people we want to hear from. They are also full of people who may want to hear from us. The need to update and maintain multiple different social media accounts is the reason multimedia managers exist. Multimedia managers allow users to manage multiple social media accounts.

There are many different multimedia managers available, but one of the more popular ones is Hootsuite, with over 6 million users. Hootsuite has both a free version and a paid version. For the average social media user, the free version will provide all the necessary tools to manage their social media accounts.

One of the great things that Hootsuite allows is sending one message to multiple different accounts. Hootsuite allows users to send messages through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, WordPress and Instagram. The user can select what social media accounts they want to send the message through. Hootsuite also allows users to shrink links to minimize characters used.

Image found on Flickr, created by Leandro Riccini Margarucci
Image found on Flickr, created by Leandro Riccini Margarucci

In addition to sending messages from multiple accounts, Hootsuite allows the user to set up customized feeds, or streams, from different social media accounts. For instance, the user can have a feed for any messages using the hashtag #THT or a stream of their Facebook timeline.

There are many other useful features that Hootsuite provides, like a scheduling feature, which allows users to schedule messages to be sent out ahead of time. It also allows users to analyze their social media data. While most users may not find this feature too helpful, it is great for businesses. Hootsuite also has an app available on iPhones and Androids.

Hootsuite is a great tool for anyone needing to manage multiple different social media platforms. It can be used by individuals, businesses and organizations. Hootsuite can help users organize, manage and maintain their social media presence without sacrificing a lot of time.

 

Sources:

Bullas, J. (2014, September 23). 5 Top Social Media Dashboard Tools to Manage Your Social Accounts. Retrieved August 11, 2015

Cue, A. (Creator). (2015, August 11). Screenshot of Hootsuite Website [Image]

Dashboard. (n.d.). Retrieved August 11, 2015

Margarucci, L. (Creator). (2011, November 14). Home Page HootSuite [screenshot] [Image]

 

 

Changes to SEO

By Ashleigh Cue

SEO Image Found on Flickr.com uploaded by Paloma Gomez
Image Found on Flickr.com uploaded by Paloma Gomez

Years ago, keywords were the key to getting your website ranked high on search engines. In order to rank higher, websites would be stuffed with keywords. The content would be stuffed with keywords, ridiculously so, and keywords would be hidden in the background. Usually hidden keywords were text boxes full of keywords that was the same color as the background, making it invisible to the reader but not to the search bots.

Now, with changes to search algorithms and largely due to Google, this has changed. Search engine optimization (SEO) is no longer about keywords, but about content. The phrase “Content is king.” is true, especially when it comes to SEO. Google’s semantic search looks for relationships behind words and content. Short keywords are not all that important, but rather long-tail search phrases.

However, one of the most important factors in SEO is what others think of the content. Blogs and websites that produce content that is shared, liked or engaged with is seen as reliable sources of information. They tend to be ranked higher due to their standing at reputable content. Content is shared more when it is good, relevant, and useful content. Thus, good content is essential to SEO. Pinterest is a great social media platform that is easily engaged with, creates linkage, and increases SEO.

Image found on Flickr, created by IntegratedChange.net
Image found on Flickr, created by Integrated-Change.net

A recent change to Google’s algorithm also placed an importance on websites being mobile friendly. In searches on cell phones, Google will penalize websites that are not mobile friendly. To help website and blog developers or owners, Google has a test which will tell you if your website is mobile friendly and if it is not, it will tell you why. As of 2013, 63% of adults use their phones to access the internet and 34% of those access the Internet primarily from their phones. In addition, there are more mobile-only internet users than desktop-only internet users. This means it is important for websites to be mobile friendly if they want to reach more people.

Search algorithms are constantly changing, so it is important to be aware of any new changes. However, unless there is another huge change in search engine algorithms, most changes will not affect a website/blog’s SEO so long as it publishes great content and has an active social media presence. The thing to remember about SEO is that content is king.

 

Sources:

Bufkins, S. (Director) (2015, July-August). Social Media Strategies. Jour 5330/4270. Lecture conducted from University of North Texas, Denton.

Freeland, A. (Director) (2015, July 27). Pinterest. Jour 5330/4270. Lecture conducted from University of North Texas, Denton.

Gomez, P. (Creator). (2009, April 11). Seo-Blocks [Image]

IntegratedChange.net. (Creator). (2015, August 1). Searching for mobile apps on Google iPhone 6 [Image]

Kovach, S. (2015, April 30). More people are using just their phones to access the internet than desktops. Retrieved August 10, 2015

Make sure your site’s ready for mobile-friendly Google search results. (n.d.). Retrieved August 10, 2015

Mobile Technology Fact Sheet. (2013, December 27). Retrieved August 10, 2015

Evergreen Content

By Ashleigh Cue

Image created by Ashleigh Cue using Wordle.net
Image created by Ashleigh Cue using Wordle.net

There are many different types of content on the internet: news articles, blog posts, Facebook posts, Tweets, etc. Many of these content are trending and have a short life span. However, some content are considered to be evergreen. Evergreen content is content that is always relevant no matter how many years have passed since it was published. Evergreen content is timeless.

There are many different kinds of evergreen content. About page is a great form of evergreen content. Businesses’ about me pages tell customers what their business is about and its history. It is always relevant for those wanting to know about the company, at least as long as the company remains in business. IMDB.com is a website that is full of information about actors, making it great evergreen content.

Another great form of evergreen content is how-to-guides. How-to-guides provides information on how to do or create something. HGTV provides excellent evergreen content about how to decorate, how to choose a color palette, etc.

While most social media is not set up to support evergreen content, there is at least one that does. Pinterest is full of evergreen content. Recipes are always great evergreen content, along with the how-to-guides.

Image found on Flickr, created by Joe The Goat Farmer
Image found on Flickr, created by Joe The Goat Farmer

While evergreen content is timeless, it does need to be updated every once and a while. In order for the content to remain fresh or reach new readers, minor updates should be done This is either to update the content, fix broken links, or modify it slightly so that it is refreshed.

Evergreen content is important to have because it is a steady source of web traffic. Non-evergreen content usually has a short lifespan and its ability to be shared is also short. With evergreen content it can be continuously shared and will constantly bring in new readers.

While it is important to have evergreen content, it is also important to have relevant up-to-date news. This lets your readers know, that you are aware of any changes in the world or your industry. Together, both content, if written well, can attract and keep people coming to your website.

 

Sources:

Bufkins, S. (Director) (2015, July-August). Social Media Strategies. Jour 5330/4270. Lecture conducted from University of North Texas, Denton.

Cue, A. (Creator). (2015, August 10). Evergreen Content – Wordle.net [Image]

Eubanks, N. (2012, September 14). The True Power of Evergreen Content – A Case Study.

Freeland, A. (Director) (2015, July 27). Pinterest. Jour 5330/4270. Lecture conducted from University of North Texas, Denton.

Fryatt, J. [JeniseFryatt]. (2015, July 20). A3 – The “About” page on your blog is an important place for evergreen content, not to be taken lightly. #contentchat [Tweet].

Joe the Goat Farmer. (Creator). (2015, July 6). The 3 Keys to Creating Viral Content [Image]

Open Sponsorship. [OpenSponsorship]. (2015, July 20). A3. Using relevant media to produce lists or guides, such as “how to’s” #contentchat [Tweet].

Social Media and Political Ignorance

By Ashleigh Cue

Image found on Flickr, created by Jason Howie
Image found on Flickr, created by Jason Howie

Did you watch the GOP Debate on Thursday? Perhaps you were out town, stuck in traffic, or without television and were unable to. Good news is that even if you did miss the televised debate, you can learn all about it via social media.

Clips about what occurred during the debate are all over Twitter, just search #GOPdebate or look up @CNNPolitics. There is a lot of information from various sources about what went on during and after the debate.

With social media, we have access to news without having to watch television, read a newspaper, or go to an online news site. There is no reason for people, especially voters, not to know about what is going on in the government or other big events happening around the world.

Social media is mobile, quick and it is on nearly every cell phone platform. You can access it from anywhere you have cell service. In addition the Internet also allows people and news industries to upload videos of the actual debate and share them, either through social media or with a link to the actual video.

Screenshot of my News Organizations list on Twitter.
Screenshot of my News Organizations list on Twitter.

Back in 2014, students from the new political organization, PoliTech, at Texas Tech University asked fellow students to answer history or political questions, which many struggled to answer. However, they all were able to answer the interviewer’s questions on what television show Snooki was from, who Brad Pitt was married to, and other celebrity questions. Another similar thing happened during the Obama/McCain presidential election in 2008. Sal Governdale, from the Howard Stern Show, interviewed people in Harlem about the candidates, purposely mixing up the information of the candidates, such as Obama’s running mate being Sarah Palin, Obama wanting to keep troops in Iraq, and his position on stem cell research. Many did not notice that the information was wrong, yet agreed with whatever position Sal had told them Obama had, including his choice for Sarah Palin as a running mate.

With the Internet, and especially social media, it is easier than ever to know what is going on in the government and the world. Many of the excuses for such ignorance is no longer plausible. With presidential elections coming up fairly soon, it is even more important to know what is going on in our government. Hopefully in this next election, voters will be better informed, either through social media or traditional news about the events taking place in our government and the positions of each candidate.

 

Sources:

Cue, A. (Creator). (2015, August 9). News on Twitter [Image]

Howie, J. (Creator). (2013, March 23). Social Media apps [Image]

[markedmannerf]. (2008, October 8). Howard Stern Interviews Obama Supporters. [Video file].

Plunk, C. [PoliTech]. (2014, October 28). Politically Challenged: Texas Tech Edition [Video file].

 

Writing for the Web

By Ashleigh Cue

Image found on Flickr, created by Dennis Skley.
Image found on Flickr, created by Dennis Skley.

The Internet is a still fairly new and social media is even more so. With the emergence of the digital age we have had to adapt many different practices to accommodate how people use the Internet. One of the practices we had to adapt to the Internet was writing. Internet writing is different than traditional story writing.

Instead of long novels or papers, the Internet is designed for clear, concise writing. Much like newspapers, writing in as few of words as possible is the goal. People generally get intimidated when they see long paragraphs on a web screen. Short paragraphs are easier for the eyes to digest and the reader to scan. In addition, most people do not scroll in order to read, or below what Chartbeat calls the digital fold. For social media, concise writing is a necessity. Twitter, for instance, has a 140 character limit. That is about one long sentence or two short ones.

In blogs, articles, or on web pages, using headings is a great way to break up paragraphs so they do not seem so daunting. Headings are section headlines that provides some insight to the content of the paragraph or paragraphs beneath it. This also helps readers scan through the article, web page or blog post easier.

Image found on Flickr, created by Will Lion
Image found on Flickr, created by Will Lion

As the Internet has grown, it has become more and more visual. Content containing visuals tend to get read more and the visuals provide an appeal that letters on a screen cannot. Like headers, visual are a great way to break up paragraphs and bodies of text.

With the creation of the internet, especially social media, people spend less and less time reading on web pages or blogs. According to Redish, most users decide whether to stay on a web page in less than 2 minutes. In order to keep potential readers on the page, the content needs to be visually appealing, which means content broken up into short bite size bits of information.

While not all things written for the Internet must be short and concise, like online stories or poetry, most should. If the content is long, than it is a good practice to break up the content with headlines and/or images. Not only does this make the content visually appealing, but it also makes it easier for readers to scan.

 

Sources:

Haile, T. (2014, March 9). What You Think You Know About the Web Is Wrong. Retrieved August 7, 2015

Lion, W. (Creator). (2008, June 29). there’s no patience on the internet [Image]

Redish, J. (2007). Letting go of the words writing Web content that works. San Francisco, California: Elsevier/Morgan Kaufmann.

Miller, K. (Creator). (2013, August 31). Internet! [Image]

Lionsgate’s Use of Twitter

by Ashleigh Cue

Image found on Flickr, created by Kendra Miller
Image found on Flickr, created by Kendra Miller

About 72% of marketers are using social media to build up loyal fans. Twitter is a great way to engage and inform your audience, as well as promote a service or product. However, the some companies in the entertainment industry uses Twitter to excite their fans about an upcoming movies. A great example of this would be how Lionsgate is promoting the newest installment in the Hunger Games movies, Mockingjay part 2.

This movie is the fourth movie in the Hunger Games series and is going to be hitting theaters November 20, 2015. Even with months to go before the movie is released, Lionsgate is actively promoting it through Twitter using the Twitter handle @TheHungerGames. They have tweeted various video clips and images about the current movies and the previous movies. They even send out tweets to celebrate the birthdays of the movie’s actors.

Before Lionsgate released the official trailer for the movie, they sent out several countdown tweets, reminding people of when the official trailer gets released. After the official trailer was released they asked fans to send them their reactions to the trailer using the hashtag #MockingjayPart2Reactions. They have since tweeted out the video links to their favorite reactions.

Promotion of #AskFinnick found on @TheHungerGames
Promotion of #AskFinnick found on @TheHungerGames

One of the most interesting events they did on Twitter to promote the movie is a question and answers tweet chat with one of the actors from the movie. On July, fans could utilize the #AskFinnick hashtag to ask Sam Claflin questions. Many people showed up to the chat and asked questions. They got to learn a little more about the movie, what happens behind the scenes, and a little bit more about the actor himself.

By giving the fans just enough videos and spoilers to keep them hooked, Lionsgate is not only exciting their fans, but they are keeping the excitement alive. Fans are anxiously awaiting the day the movie gets released in theaters and many of them are already counting down the days.

Sources:

Miller, K. (Creator). (2011, December 31). The Hunger Games [Image]

Lionsgate. (Creator). (2015). #AskFinnick Graphic [Image]

Kusinitz, S. (2014, June 6). 16 Stats That Prove Social Media Isn’t Just a Fad [New Data]. Retrieved August 2, 2015

Facebook Vs YouTube

By Ashleigh Cue

Image found on Flickr, created by Esther Vargas
Image found on Flickr, created by Esther Vargas

For many years YouTube has been the top online video platform. In fact, YouTube is the second most used search engine with its parent company, Google, being first. However, YouTube is currently facing challenges from a new contender, Facebook.

Facebook videos are quickly gaining momentum and has quadrupled Facebook’s traffic since its launch. The social media platform is experimenting with ads and trying to get the most money out of their videos by offering audience targeting. Based on their experiments, such as placing ads between two consecutively streamed videos, it can be speculated that they want their users to watch many videos in one sitting.

YouTube has some competition to prepare for. While Google may be the search engine king, Facebook is the largest social platform. With all the personal user data Facebook has from its 1.4 billion users, it can offer advertisers better advertising to targeted people. In addition to all the personal data Facebook has at their disposal, the very nature of the social media platform means that their users check their news feeds multiple times a day.

Image found on Flickr, created by Maria Elena
Image found on Flickr, created by Maria Elena

According to Business Insider, in 2013, YouTube had 58% of desktop video views with Facebook only having 24%. However, by 2014, YouTube dropped to 56% while Facebook jumped up to 33%. YouTube may still be dominating the market, but Facebook’s video views are increasing at an alarming rate.

At the time of the Ice Bucket Challenge, Facebook had 1 billion video views per day. According to a Forbes article, it has now reached 4 billion. However, it is still shy of the 8 billion views per day YouTube is estimated to have by the end of this year.

While Facebook does have some advantages, YouTube has some as well. YouTube has 10 years of dealing with video content, while Facebook is still experimenting with it. YouTube has faced and overcome many challenging issues in regards to people uploading copyrighted videos, while Facebook probably has not had to deal with that much. YouTube also has a superior search engine and you do not need an account to watch YouTube videos.

YouTube still maintains its dominance in the video market. However, the video giant should start thinking of how to combat the large social media platform. Otherwise they may be out maneuvered and left in the dust, much like Myspace was when Facebook dominated the social network industry.

Sources:

Elena, M. (Creator). (2013). Facebook-Mobile-App-640×340 [Image]

Ingham, E. (2015, April 28). 4B Vs. 7B: Can Facebook Overtake YouTube As No. 1 For Video Views And Advertisers? Retrieved July 30, 2015

Kulp, P. (2015, July 21). Facebook now lets you restrict who views videos by age and gender. Retrieved July 30, 2015

O’Reilly, L. (2014, November 14). Facebook Is Gobbling Up YouTube’s Audience. Retrieved July 30, 2015

Vargas, E. (Creator). (2013). YouTube [Image]