Category Archives: Facebook

Monday Morning Quick Tip – If Your Ears Are Burning, Check This To See What’s Being Said About You

Remember that old saying about if your ears are burning, it’s because someone was talking about you? With online conversations happening 24/7 via social networking, wouldn’t you like to be privy to what’s being said by others about your horsebiz?

Social Mention is one way to quickly search over 100 social media sites to see who’s saying what about you, including social media powerhouse sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Digg, and Google. You can search for your own name, your business name, your Twitter or Facebook name, or a topic…even search and see what’s being said about others, including your competition.

For example, ‘secretariat’ was a trending term at the time of this article, so I looked to see what’s being said. Apparently the movie Secretariat was being shown on Starz, and folks were commenting about the movie via social media.

Don’t have time to search, or think it’s something you’ll forget to do? They’ve got a solution for that, with daily Social Mention Alerts you can set up based on search phrases, types of media, and mentions in 43+ languages. The alerts get plopped into your email inbox every day. There’s also a ‘Realtime Buzz Widget‘ you can embed into your blog or website, capturing ‘buzz’ mentions about your brand as they happen.

Knowing what’s being said, either positive or negative, gives you the opportunity to engage with the person saying it. Social Mention is a free, easy-to-use tool that can give you a leg up in both awareness and responsiveness in the social sphere.

What was being said about your horsebiz? Share your Social Mention results via the Leave a Comment link below. You can also give this article a score, from Very Poor to Excellent, via the new Rate This tool right under the title (hint, look for the stars!).

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Filed under Equine Industry Marketing, Facebook, Monday Morning Quick Tip, New Media, Twitter, Uncategorized

Monday Morning Quick Tip – Did You Know June 30th is Global Social Media Day?

An ‘official’ Social Media Day (SMDay) was started last year by the influential social media site Mashable; the second annual event is this week, and growing. How will you participate in the conversation?

On Mashable’s announcement of SMDay last year, they had this to say:

Social media has changed our lives. It has not only changed the way we communicate, but the way we connect with one another, consume our news, conduct our work, organize our lives, and much more. So why not celebrate?

In 2010, Mashable urged readers to organize meet-ups to celebrate, and people responded, with over 12,000 people participating globally in 600+ meet-ups in 93 countries; over 30,000 tweets were posted on Twitter using the official #smday hashtag.

At this time, there are 1,374 meet-ups scheduled around the world for SMDay 2011Go here if you’d like to find a 2011 meet-up in your area, or you can start one yourself. Wouldn’t it be cool to have the first-ever trail ride meet-up to celebrate SMDay? Or to organize a meet-up at a horse show, tack store, barn, or feedstore near you?

Here’s how Mashable’s celebrating SMDay 2011. How will you?

Are you planning to do anything for Social Media Day 2011? Share your thoughts via the Comment link below.

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Filed under Equine Industry Marketing, Facebook, Monday Morning Quickie, New Media, Twitter, Uncategorized

Monday Morning Quickie – ‘Horse World Gives Back’ Radiothon Today

Last Monday featured the PR campaign for the Horse World Gives Back radiothon & Retailer Day to benefit horsebiz owners affected by the recent flooding and tornado disasters throughout the U.S.; tonight is the radiothon, and tomorrow (June 7) is the Retailer Day. I hope you’ll tune in and consider a donation, no matter how large or small. Horse Radio Network founder and radiothon host ‘Glenn the Geek’ Hebert says have the Kleenex ready.

Here are a few tips to add to last week’s post about the PR campaign:

  • Social Media Avatar Images: If you have images or logos available for the media to use, add in a square-shaped image or two that folks can use as their social media avatar. I used the Horse World Gives Back logo and it worked fine, but it did cut a bit off the top and bottom. Consider it another way to ‘get the word out’ about your campaign, by giving supporters a way to show that support.
  • Live Social Media Messaging: Myself and Jackie Baker from the Regarding Horses blog will be live-messaging during the radiothon, both via the Horse World Gives Back Facbook page and Twitter account, and I’ll also be live tweeting via my own @KempEquine account. Remember that the official Twitter hashtag for the event is #horserelief, but you can also use #HorseWorldGivesBack; including one of those in your tweet turns it into a searchable active link. The #horserelief hashtag is also shown on the Horse World Gives Back website Twitter timeline. Live messaging via social media is a way to engage people in the moment, and share the experience across your social media community.
  • Giving Thanks: Pulling together and promoting any event takes a lot of time, effort, and people. Be sure to build in a place to give acknowledgement to those that helped you along the way. Keep a running list so you don’t forget anyone! I’d also include their contact information, so that you have it all in one place and don’t have to dig for information you thought you had.
You’ll be able to listen live via the Horse World Gives Back radiothon internet player – please join in to make a difference for all the folks who lost so much in the recent disasters.
Disclosure note: I’ve been helping Horse Radio Network with some promotion for this event on a pro bono basis. In case you were wondering.

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A PR Plan Into Action – Horse World Gives Back For Tornado, Flood Relief

We’ve all been seeing images of the recent U.S. flood and tornado devastation; if you’ve wondered how you might help horses in need and their owners or what you can even do, wonder no more. At the same time, you can see a bang-up PR campaign that’s getting underway, and learn from it in the process.

Horse World Gives Back logoHorse World Gives Back is a campaign to do just that – allow the horse world an avenue to help other equestrians and horsebiz owners in need due to disaster. This fundraising drive centers around a 3-hour Horse Radio Network Radiothon on June 6, 2011, and a Retail Day the following day, June 7th. Donations will go through the U.S. Equine Disaster Relief Fund and the Red Cross.

As for the part about learning from their PR campaign, I think Horse World Gives Back is doing a great job so far. Here’s a breakdown of the parts:

  • A timely topic that’s likely to be interesting to equestrian media and their readers, viewers, and listeners
  • A well-branded, interesting event to promote
  • Tools to help the equine media tell the story
  • Completely set up for social media sharing
  • Ways to sign up, and recognition of those committing to help
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A Timely Topic

Looking at this campaign purely from a news and PR view, it’s a story that’s on the minds of most these days. Major news outlets are covering tornado and flood issues on a daily basis. Add in the public’s desire for more information and updates on this top-of-mind story, plus the desire of many to help others in need, and the possibilities are wide open for ongoing news coverage and a good chance for Horse World Gives Back to be picked up as a media story.

A Well-Branded & Interesting Event

Despite coming together quickly as an event, Horse World Gives Back is well-branded, with a strong visual identity. The charities collecting the funds are well-known and respected (Red Cross, U.S. Equine Disaster Relief Fund). We’re all familiar with the concept of a telethon or dance-a-thon, but a horse industry radiothon could be a first, upping the newsiness.

Equine Media Tools

All news media are time-pressed and on deadline. It’s important to give journalists (and bloggers) the facts and tools they need to tell your story. Horse World Gives Back has set up an excellent Media resource on the official website, giving a well-written press release in two versions (a PDF document, and a web version); official logo JPG files in several sizes; additional click-thru web graphics; and social media text options.

There’s also a ‘listen to the radiothon’ link to the Horse Radio Network Radiothon Player; anyone can add it to their website, giving visitors a way to listen to the radiothon broadcast.

The only things I’d add would be a selection of several photos, and an explanation about the official Twitter hashtag. Here’s why:

    • Photos would provide a visual to help illustrate the dire need and provide a ‘call to action’ for viewers, but they could be difficult to come by. There’s also the issue of copyright and paying the photographer, unless the images were donated; in lieu of images, it’s good they have the logo available.
    • Due to its nature, Twitter is an excellent social media tool for breaking news. ‘Hashtags’ are words that, when combined with the # sign, become live, active links – click on one, and it will take you to a stream of all other tweets or posts with that same hashtag. In the case of Horse World Gives Back, the official hashtag is #horserelief, but depending on your goals you could select a more branded one, such as #HWGB or #HorseWorldGivesBack. It’s a good idea to have a short hashtag, but longer ones can work, too.

Social Media Tools for Horse World Gives BackSocial Media Sharing

Not only has Horse World Gives Back provided social media (Twitter, Facebook) tools in their Media area, they’ve also included buttons to connect you directly to their own Twitter and Facebook accounts, AND they’ve included a livestream of the official #horserelief Twitter hashtag, so you can see the Twitter traffic streaming by. In our networked world, social media is crucial in a time-sensitive campaign like this, to get the word out quickly.

Ways to Participate, Commitment Sign-Up & Recognition

Not only has Horse World Gives Back provided a sign-up for retailers participating in the Retail Day, they’ve built-in a sign-up for the equine media outlets, websites, and blogs that will commit to promoting the event as Affiliates. Both result in a clickable list of participants, recognizing their commitment to help.

There’s also a Participate link, giving everyone who wants to a chance to take part and spread the word to promote the fundraiser.

In The End…

The final success of this fundraiser will be in the dollars raised to help horses and people affected by these recent natural disasters. However, Horse World Gives Back has built in all the tools for a successful word-of-mouth PR campaign, so I wouldn’t be surprised if that success is a big one.

Please consider how you can participate in, tell others about, and donate to Horse World Gives Back. Even if you can only give a little, it adds up. If all horsefolk joined forces on this one, think of the difference we’d make! Learn more about Horse World Gives Back here.

Disclosure note: I’ve been helping Horse Radio Network with some promotion for this event on a pro bono basis. In case you were wondering.

 

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Case Studies, Equine Industry Marketing, Facebook, Monday Morning Quickie, New Media, Twitter

52 Fridays – #17 Think You Don’t Have Anything To Share On Social Media? Think Again!

52 Fridays is a year-long series for equestrian professionals and equine business owners and managers, with marketing and public relations information, ideas, tips, & resources shared here each Friday. New EMAIL blog subscribers receive a ’52 Fridays’ PDF when they sign up; existing subscribers and new RSS FEED & WORDPRESS subscribers can send a request for their own PDF here.

Social media is about building relationships and community. Sharing interesting ‘stuff’ about your horsebiz with supporters, fans, customers, and followers helps them interact with you, strengthening connections and likely your word of mouth exposure. But when it’s something you’re immersed in (aka, your horse business), that ‘interesting information’ can be something you don’t even think about, because you take it for granted.

How can you start finding stuff to share? By going through your daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly routines with a fine-tooth comb, making a list of photo or video opportunities, events, clients, horses, and then creating a list or calendar (remember 52 Fridays #4, What The Bleep Is A Marketing Calendar, And How Do I Use One?) to plan for capturing things when they’re going to happen.

Still need a few hints? Here you go:

  • It’s breeding and foaling season on many horse farms. Have someone take photos of your stallion doing his studly best to impress a teaser mare. Or take photos of newborn foals, even of the birth process if the mare’s OK with it. Follow a few foals as they grow up, with weekly photos or video and stories about their personality, misadventures, imprinting, and training.
  • Are you clipping horses for show season, or is the farrier coming out this week? Packing up for a show, expo, or tradeshow? What else is going on?
  • How about your lesson students or training clients? Photos or video of a portion of their lesson can be shared, with their permission of course! It’s a good idea to have a signed photo release when you’re sharing images of others on your website or via social media, especially with minors who need a parent to sign for them.

Sure, all this is part of your regular routine, but that’s the point…you’re allowing others who are interested in what you do and what you have to offer to have a glimpse into what makes up the tick-tock of your day. Do be cautious about ‘over-sharing’ your personal details, and your current whereabouts; for more information about that, check out 52 Fridays #16 from last week.

Here’s a real-life Facebook-sharing example I learned from Mandy Parker, the marketing coordinator and art director at Heritage Homes of Nebraska; we met in a virtual conference event (a sweet concept, watch for a blog post sometime in the future about it!).

Heritage Homes builds custom homes in their manufacturing facility for a swath of the Midwest and Great Plains states, plus Canada. They’ve recently started Web Wednesdays, sharing ‘in-progress’ photos of client homes currently being built. They get a signed release from each client, and post the images at their Facebook page. Here’s what Mandy had to say about their results:

“Our Web Wednesdays have been a great “like” getter for us.  We just started the program a month or 2 ago and have gotten about 100 likes from it.  I know 100 is small potatoes, but for us just starting the Social Media realm I am pretty excited.”

Those ‘likes’ are the start of a relationship with people who are interested in new homes, ‘dream’ homes, design and architecture, etc. They might or might not become customers, but Heritage Homes is making use of social media to connect and share with people who are interested in what they do. They’re also leveraging current business, because don’t you think the folks whose homes are featured are sending the Facebook link to their friends & family?

It’s also a good idea to keep recording tools close at hand, and make documentation part of your daily routine. Last year I was working on an article, and interviewed a trainer/breeder; she said she always carries a camera out into the pastures and shoots a few minutes of video of whatever’s going on, then posts it to YouTube.

The best social media sharing involves telling your story to to your community, in bite-sized pieces that you share with them over time. If you’re wondering what you have to share, you might be surprised at what you do find if you just take a look.

What do you share on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, or other social media? Share links to your stuff via the Leave a Comment link below. See you here next Friday for 52 Fridays #18!

Read other 52 Fridays posts by clicking on the Sort Posts By Topic dropdown menu to the right and selecting the Facebook category, or you can select 52 Fridays to read posts #1 through #16.

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Filed under 52 Fridays, Equine Industry Marketing, Facebook, New Media, Photography, Twitter, Uncategorized, Video