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Social media marketing: Pitfalls and how to avoid them

By Megan Totka

Most people understand how to use social media to find friends, activities, games, etc. Businesses are also becoming more adept at finding both their current customers as well as new ones by using social media sites to their advantage. But social media can be a dangerous creature if you don’t know how to harness its power properly.

Social media marketing is quickly becoming a focus for many companies. Since some social media sites, Facebook in particular, are viewed millions of times per day, it’s critical to the success of small businesses to keep their page(s) up-to-date and use them as tools to interact with customers.

However, there are many pitfalls to social media marketing. Here are some common social media gaffes and how to avoid or remedy them:

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4 reasons why you need a mobile website

By Debra Kaye

Smartphones aren’t simply convenient communication devices – they have become an integral part of our lives and our culture. Putting this into context, a mobile phone today is in the possession of the average user for 5,840 hours per year. That compares to the 2,920 hours the same user sits in front of a PC and the 1,865 hours she spends watching television. That means news, current product information, sales, and specials have to become part of the digital news flow experience of the portable device. With that in mind, here are my four top reasons why your website should be mobile:

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6 small business statistics that may surprise you

By Brent Barnhart

Small businesses love statistics.

And why not? They help us understand where we’re going and where we’ve been. After all, those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

By better understanding the small business landscape by the numbers, we’re more likely to make informed decisions and keep ourselves from heading our businesses in the wrong direction. As business owners, continuing education is crucial in keeping our companies current.

The following six statistics have a lot to teach us about the state of small business, the economy and the future of Internet marketing. Whether or not they come to surprise you, consider how these stats impact your company.

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Want more business from your website? Here are 6 things your customers need to see

By Tim Peter

The Internet offers customers lots of options before they make a purchase decision. In fact, it’s cliché to say that on the Internet your competition is just a click away. But it’s true. Research from Google and others suggests that customers view an average of seven to 10 sites before making a purchase decision. In some industries, those numbers are even higher.

Why so many?

Simple. Regardless of whether they are looking for a new car, consultant, contractor, or chiropractor, customers really look to answer only two questions when researching products and services online:

Will this product/service meet my needs?

Why should I buy from you?

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It takes a village … to succeed in social media

By Megan Totka

Traditionally, the work of social media-profile development has fallen on PR departments. Over time, social media efforts morphed into a department of its own in companies that could afford the manpower and saw the financial potential of a vast mobile following. Decision makers from companies of all sizes know the extreme value of a strong social media presence.

Beyond web platforms

In November, Flurry Analytics released some telling numbers on the ways Americans are spending time using electronic mediums. In 2011, Americans spent 72 minutes per day web browsing and 94 minutes per day using mobile applications. Both activities were dwarfed by television consumption, which came in at 168 minutes per day. Though the year is not quite over, the numbers for 2012 show stagnancy in web browsing and television watching, but a jump to 127 minutes per day in mobile application use.

Over the past two years, the number of events completed within mobile apps has increased tenfold to one trillion, or 1,000 billion. An event is an action completed by a user inside an app, such as completing a game level, making a restaurant reservation or tagging a song. While not all of these apps are social media based, these numbers should be sobering to all companies. Engagement with the marketplace through mobile apps is becoming increasingly important.

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