Good morning, Social Rabbit here lying on a sunlounger drinking cocktails, while gorgeous guest bloggers help entertain you! Today’s is Michelle Damico from Chicago….
Greetings from Chicago Illinois, USA and Thank You to my Social Rabbit friend Lara for inviting me to be a guest blogger while she gets some much needed rest.
As I write this, it’s 11 am, Thursday October 21 on a beautiful, sunny, cool and crisp Autumn day in Chicago. The weather has been consistently beautiful for two weeks now and we are all so grateful as we brace for Chicago’s brutal winter. WorldTimeZone.com tells me that it’s now 3 am Friday, October 22 in Sydney, which means I better write fast if I am to meet Lara’s deadline!
Lara asked me to write about social media from a US business perspective, and after attending a fantastic “Social Media for Small Business” workshop in downtown Chicago earlier this month, I thought I’d share my notes (which I’ll also be talking about on my blog — MichelleDamico.com).
The beauty of social is that no one can legitimately call himself or herself an expert because the platforms are evolving (remember MySpace anyone?) and we’re all learning. As someone trying to stay on top of word-of-mouth communications strategy, I am always seeking the insights, tools and creative approaches taken by others. So I was quite pleased to hear (and to be able to share with you) great recommendations on the best free tools for measuring your results on social networks.
FREE TOOLS: When it comes to freebies, Google is king.
Google Alerts –provide you with updates on what’s being said on the web and social platforms about your topic, client and his/her competitors on a daily or “as-it-happens” basis. The alerts are a must for anyone in marketing or PR who needs to stay on top of the news, a client, the competition, or industry trends.
Google Keyword Search — you can go to Google Adwords to find the “Get keyword ideas” link for help in selecting the most powerful key words to insert into your online content. This will help boost your organic search results on Google or other search engines.
Google Blogs – helps you identify where your key words are turning up on the blogosphere. It’s a great time-saver – one search can identify every blog where your key word has appeared and an up-to-the minute report on the last time your keyword was mentioned.
Google Video Search – with YouTube (Google’s baby) now the third most popular search engine, it’s only logical that Google would provide a tool to search millions of videos (in any language) across the web. Find out how many people are clicking on your video listings.
Google Analytics – one of the top tools to help you understand how people find you online. Google Analytics helps you measure the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns, and provides insights on how to convert more traffic to your site. It’s easy-to-understand, great for beginners and generates detailed statistics about the referring traffic and key words used to get eyeballs to your site. You can measure advertising ROI and track your photos, video and social networking sites and applications.
TweetLevel –looking for ways to measure your Twitter effectiveness? Check out this Twitter measurement tool created by Edelman PR firm. It scores an individual’s importance on Twitter by scoring their influence, popularity, engagement and trust.
SocialMention – its web site says SocialMention is like Google Alerts, but for social media.You’ll get email alerts about what’s being said on social media platforms. The beauty here is its ability to tag the sentiment of what’s being said on social media about your brand, company, CEO, the news, a competitor or TV and movie stars. It’s especially helpful for keeping keep track of your competitors.
Michelle Damico is a communications professional helping businesses use the best messages to launch word-of-mouth marketing initiatives on social networks. She blogs at www.michelledamico.com, or find her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Damico.Michelle and on Twitter.com/MichelleDamico.