Are You Using #Hashtags in your Facebook Posts?

Facebook Hashtags

Photo Credit: uwgb admissions via Compfight cc

It was only a matter of time. Twitter was the first to use them; LinkedIn, Google+, and nearly every other social media outlet soon followed suit, and now Facebook has jumped aboard the #hashtags bandwagon as well.

Hashtags should be a part of your social media plan. If you’re already using them in your Twitter and LinkedIn posts, the transition should be easy and smooth for you. Just add the same hashtags.

Never used hashtags? It’s easy.

Think of hashtags as keywords. They provide a way to connect you with others who are talking about that same topic. For instance, if you are writing about the Pittsburgh Marathon, at the end or in the middle of your post, add #PittsburghMarathon (i.e. Great workout today—ran ten miles. Preparing for next year’s #PittsburghMarathon.) Writing about the #Steelers, #Penguins, or #Pirates? I think you get the point. Once you tag a word or phrase with a hashtag, it automatically becomes a clickable link. So you can click on that hashtag to see a feed of posts by others who are talking about the same topic on Facebook.

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14 Ways To Get More Facebook Shares

This is great. The infographic below was co-presented by ShortStack and Mari Smith.

Love this! What do you think of their ideas? See the original post here.


10 Top Ways to Win Using Pinterest for Business

Karen Leland

Karen Leland

Pinterest is a social bookmarking site that allows users to create a visual, online pinboard with images they love organized around topics of their choice by category. It’s the fastest growing social media site in history, the third-largest network after Facebook and Twitter and has over 25 million members and 10 million unique visitors a month.

The most recent studies indicate that nearly 20 percent of women using the Internet are on Pinterest, 72 percent of Pinterest users are female, and 66 percent of those are age 35 or older, and the average amount of time visitors spend surfing the Pinterest site is an hour.

Karen Leland, author of the new book “Entrepreneur Magazine’s Ultimate Guide to Pinterest for Business,” has created a comprehensive and easy-to-use guide to hitting the road running and quickly making Pinterest into a valuable source of prospects, promotion and profits.

“Great business brands are about telling compelling, congruent stories, and Pinterest is at its core about storytelling in pictures,” says Leland. “Pinterest has tapped into this visceral lover of visuals, and no small business, entrepreneur or corporation can afford to miss the boat on bringing what they offer beyond words and into images.”

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What Do I Need to Know About Graph Search?

Facebook Graph SearchA few weeks ago, Facebook unveiled its latest tool called Graph Search.

Facebook’s mission is to make the world more open and connected by giving users the tools to map out their relationships with the people and things they care about. This map is called the graph.

If you have a Facebook account, think of everyone you are connected with, their connections, and their connections, along with their interests and photos. With this new search feature, you can better navigate all of these connections and make it more meaningful in your outreach and marketing efforts.

Graph Search will appear as a bigger search bar at the top of each page in Facebook. When you search for something, such as “physicians in Pittsburgh,” that search not only determines the set of results you get, but also serves as a title for the page. According to Facebook, “you can edit the title – and in doing so create your own custom view of the content you and your friends have shared on Facebook.”

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What is your Favorite Social Media Management Tool?

Buffer or HootsuiteA business client of ours asked us this recently because he was managing several accounts for his agency. It was driving him nuts trying to keep everything in order.

There are hundreds of different social media management tools that you can use to schedule posts, manage multiple account, or to clip and post interesting articles for your followers. The two tools that we use and highly recommend are Hootsuite and Buffer.

Hootsuite is still a favorite of ours and remains the most comprehensive tool for social media management. We like it because we could manage multiple Twitter accounts and it has a really clear tabbed view layout. For instance, when using it to manage your Twitter account, it displays your activity in separate columns for your Home Feed, Direct Messages, Mentions, and Sent Tweets. In addition, you can set these streams to auto-refresh in intervals from two to 30 minutes, or select manual refreshes. Combine it with Google Analytics, and you can directly connect your social interactions with actions taken on your website. Actually, before you choose any online tool, always check that you can feed into Google Analytics!

But we also like to use Buffer for its simplicity and its ease of use. We have also found that it’s easy to customize and best of all it integrates well with just about everything, including Twitter, Chrome, Safari, and even Google Reader.

But as we stressed here on Ask the Writers, social media is about being “social” first. If all you do is post ads, announcements and promotional posts, and you are not interacting with your connections, then you’re just wasting space and time. There is a time to use Hootsuite and Buffer. They’re both great in allowing you to schedule posts and retweets, but take the time to interact and engage with your followers. Social media is like going to a networking event or a party. Are you going to mingle and interact with other people or are you just going to sit in the corner and do nothing?

How can I change my Facebook URL to something shorter?

I was browsing the latest edition of the Pittsburgh Business Times last week and came across a listing of their social media channels in the back pages of their paper.  Here’s what I saw:

Notice the long URL for their Facebook page.

It will take mere seconds to change it to something that better reflects their brand, such as I’m not picking on the Business Times, a paper I highly respect—there are many other media outlets who are still using the default username Facebook gives them when they first register a page.

As a small business, you would want to have a unique Page URL so it would be easier to share your page with others and easier for them to remember. We recommend a username that is relevant to your business. In the past, you needed 25 likes on your page to acquire a unique username. That is no longer the case.

1. To obtain a unique URL for your Facebook business page, be sure you are logged into your personal Facebook account.

2, Next, type in your browser.

3. You’ll see a list of the Pages you manage and an option to choose a unique URL for those Pages. When you select a username, Facebook will immediately inform you if it’s available.

4. Once you select your Page’s username, the unique URL for your page becomes

That’s it. Pretty simple!.