How To Use A Hashtag On Twitter

Twitter HashtagsBy Dexter Patterson

@drpatterson2

1. Only use hashtags on words that actually have a purpose.
2. Don’t use more than 3 hashtags on a post. Too many hashtags looks unprofessional.
3. Check your hashtags and see what type of content shows up. Are there any networking opportunities you can take advantage of?  Is there anyone you can help?
4. Use hashtags for online contests! People love free stuff and you have a better chance of getting them to your company website if you can incentivize their participation.
5. Hashtags are an excellent marketing tool for ongoing/weekly events such as a podcasts or online video series.
6. Hashtags help keep the conversation moving online so use them to your advantage.  Use them to surround yourself with people that share similar interests.
7. Use hashtags at all the live events you attend.  This can help you netowrk with people that may have attended the same webinar, workshop, or conference.
8. Check if your hashtag is already being used. Is the content relevant to your brand?
9. Use your hashtags across multiple social media platforms. If you’re using it on Twitter, then use it on Facebook, and Instagram as well.
10. Don’t use long hashtags we all value our 140 characters.
11. Use hashtags to find valuable information related to your own personal interests.
12. Hashtags work best when they are associated with some sort of media.  Images and links to videos are great examples.
13. Try using hashtags that help people find your brand.
14. Use hashtags for all of your online contests.
15. Only use working links with your hashtags

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3 Secrets To Making Your Facebook Page More Visible

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3 Secrets To Making Your Facebook Page More Visible

By Dexter Patterson

Update your profile picture on a weekly basis:

Updating your profile picture and or cover photo on a weekly basis makes your page visible to people that may not have seen any of your recent posts. Why?  First of all, the  new Facebook algorithms love images and images tend to receive the most traction online. The more people that engage with your image the more visible that image becomes in your timeline.  As a result, you get more traffic and your Facebook page becomes more visible.

The images you use don’t have to be used just on your profile picture either.  You can also share graphics of inspirational quotes, or share info-graphics that you feel will benefit your target audience.  In the end, all the images you use will help drive traffic to your Facebook page.

I know a lot of businesses choose to use their company logo as their profile picture on Facebook which is fine, but pictures of real people will always help create a stronger human connection with potential clients. I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather support a real life person over a logo any day.  Furthermore, I suggest that you use professional high quality photos for your profile picture.  If you want to be treated like a professional, then I suggest you start looking like one.

Sharing content that can entertain, inspire, and help others:

When you share content that is entertaining, inspiring, and helpful, you will instantly generate more traffic for your page.

Don’t be that person posting selfies every day bragging about how great you are.  Don’t be that person that is always trying to sell someone something!

When you share things that entertain, inspire, and help others, you are no longer a salesmen, you are a resource.  Business is business, but remember social media always works best when it’s kept social.

Engage with more people:

The key to having success on any social media platform is engagement.  If you’re blessed enough to create content that other people find valuable, then you need to engage with as many of those people as possible.  I know this may sound time consuming, but it will be time well spent.  Engagement leads to opportunity and opportunity is all you need to experience success.

Start paying attention to the people that “like” your posts.  Facebook chooses the people that see your posts based on engagement.  Typically we only reach between 2-10% of our Facebook friends with a single post.  For this reason, you must put in a little more work if you want more people to see your content.

I challenge you to track your engagement on Facebook for a week. You will quickly notice that you probably only interact with a handful of people on a regular basis.  If you dig a little deeper into your friend list you will find tons of opportunities for engagement.  This also helps you determine whether or not people are wasting your time.  If they don’t “like” anything you do, or they aren’t sharing your content, then maybe its time to consider removing them from your friends list.  Start focusing your promotional efforts on the people that show genuine interest in your brand.  If you do this, I promise your Facebook page will  start to become more visible.

 

Peace and Progress

-DRP

7 Keys to Success on Facebook

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Success thumb up sign is made of various single words. Isolated on white.

 

1.  Search for the conversation:  You should always be initiating or seeking out quality conversations on Facebook. What good is the world’s #1 social networking site if you’re not being social?  Remember your network can have a major impact on your net worth.

2.  Start paying attention to your friend requests:  Numbers are important on social media, but only if those people have some sort of interest in your brand or what you have to say. Check people out before you add them to your network.  Take a few seconds to look at their wall and see what their about.  Do you have anything in common?  Do you want them in your news feed?

3.  Don’t hide your personality:  Way too often people assume that adding a little personality to your social networking sites is unprofessional. However, I believe if you infuse personality into your online marketing efforts you’ll be more productive because you’ll actually be having fun.

4.  Remember it’s not always about you:  Ask more questions of your followers.  Observe their comments and compare them to your current strategies.  Social media is a great tool for gathering new market information and an even better tool for customer service.

5.  Never pay for Facebook “likes”:  If you’re going to pay for anything on Facebook then I suggest you pay to “boost” your own posts. This method of advertising allows you to target a specific audience and you have the comfort of knowing the people you are targeting are real people.  On the other hand,  buying “likes” is simply a scam and a waste of money.  Having “likes” from a bunch of “ghost” accounts may look good to the outside world but it’s bad for business.  They aren’t commenting on your posts or generating any conversation about your brand.  They will never share your content with their friends because they don’t exist.

6.  Start sharing other people’s content:  I know all you care about is promoting your own brand.  However, I believe it is very important for you to be willing to help other people online. Why should you take the time to help other people?  Helping others is a great way to build positive working relationships and an extremely efficient way of creating meaningful opportunities for yourself.

“You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”

Zig Ziglar

7.  Follow through:  I think the biggest mistake most people make on social networking sites is that they don’t follow-up with people they already know.  Create a list of people that have been influential to the success of your brand.  Reach out to these people on a regular basis and search for ways to take these solid online relationships offline.

“Finding Your Voice”

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The most powerful tool we have is our voice. Our voice is so much more than empty words and various sounds. Our true voice is what defines who we are as individuals.

It’s your voice so LISTEN

Way too often people sacrifice their own voice in order to satisfy the needs of the masses. As a result, you blend in just like everyone else and your talents go unnoticed. Slowly you start to lose sight of who you are and eventually your voice goes silent. Start paying attention to the successful people you admire. I guarantee these people have already found their voice and they listen to it on a daily basis.

THINK about yourself for once

I’ll admit finding your voice isn’t always easy. Peer pressure is real and deep down everyone seeks some level of approval from their peers. Let’s be honest, we all want to be liked. However, that want to be liked, is what can keep some of us from finding true happiness. 

Answer these 7 questions and GROW

  1. Who are you?  Do yourself a favor and PLEASE BE HONEST!
  2. What is your passion?
  3. What do the people that know you best say you’re good at?
  4. What comes natural to you?
  5. What type of advice do people come to you for?
  6. What would you say is your expertise?
  7. How would you describe your personality and do you infuse it into your brand?

Remember CHANGE is hard but necessary

If you can answer these questions, you are extremely close to finding your voice and you can start living your life as the person you were always meant to be.   

Peace and Progress

-DRP

Follow Me on Twitter: @drpatterson2

 

 

 

 

Rhyme and Reason of Twitter Vol. 2

By Dexter Patterson

@drpatterson2

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My last blog post entitled; “The Rhyme and Reason of Twitter”, generated a lot more traction online than I expected.  To my delight, the post sparked a lot of positive debate amongst my peers online.  The post also allowed me to actively engage with my target audience in a way that has never happened before.

Mark W. Schaefer’s book The Tao of Twitter, was the inspiration for my initial post.  This book has not only changed how I view Twitter, but how I view my entire online experience.  After reading Mark’s book, I have gained almost 400 new Twitter followers on my professional Twitter page.  In addition, I have connected with so many thought leaders that my own skills get better on a daily basis.  I’m learning from the best and I now have the confidence I need to be a leader in the music industry.

How you can get the most out of your Twitter experience

Before you start worrying about gaining new followers, you need to focus on how to get the most out of your own Twitter experience.  Focus on your strategy and determine what people you want to connect with the most on Twitter.  Don’t forget Twitter always works best if you are actually networking!  Appreciate the fact that you can easily learn from some of the best in your industry.  No matter how good you think you are, no one makes it to the top alone.  So swallow your pride, learn from the best, and start to enjoy your Twitter experience.

Let’s get your Twitter game tight!

I had a tons of people ask me; “How can I get more followers?”  First of all, if you want more followers, you need to make a good first impression.  If you want to be treated like a professional then you need to carry yourself like a professional.  Make sure your profile picture and Twitter background are of industry quality.  Make sure your personal bio actually tells people some valuable information about you and your brand.  Your image is everything when you’re promoting online so please don’t take any shortcuts.

We also need to become choosier with the people we engage with online.  Before you follow someone it might be a good idea to actually check out his or her profile.  According to Mark Schaefer, “More relevant connections = more opportunities for business benefits.”  Are they even a real person? Pay attention to their posts and whether or not they have a habit of sharing other people’s content.  If they actually share other people’s content, then it’s probably a good idea to add that person to your network.  Constantly evaluate whether or not you think you can gain anything from each connection you make.

Spend most of your time on Twitter trying to network with people that can actually make you better.  Pay attention to what makes these individuals successful.  Is their content better than yours? Is their marketing approach more creative than yours?  Do they post to their sites on a more consistent basis?  Do they genuinely seem to appreciate their fans? These are the questions you need to be asking yourself if you expect to have success on Twitter.

Building trust with your target audience

Building trust with your target audience should always be your top priority.  We need to open our ears and start listening to the needs of our fans. Provide them quality content and show them you know how to deliver.  When you start to deliver you will start to build trust, and that trust is what matters the most online.

Make your most loyal fans a part of the team

We really need to allow our fans to help us more often.  They have the ability to spread your brand much faster than the typical email blast sent to a bunch of random people without an actual connection.  Taking good care of your current fans will always help you get new ones. Remember, word of mouth advertising will always be one of the most powerful marketing tools we have.  Here is a great way you can put some of your loyal fans to work. Develop online street teams made up of some of your biggest supporters.  Give them a mission and allow them to work their magic.  Offer them free music downloads, exclusive access to new videos, or even some custom merchandise.  If you have an event coming up, put their name on the guest list and don’t ever forget to thank them for their hard work.

Wrap up

Trust me if you’re willing to put in the work Twitter will eventually pay off.  Stay patient and believe in the process.  I highly recommend that you pick up Mark’s book The Tao of Twitter so you can have your own “a-ha moment”. 

This post was inspired by my recent coursework at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  I highly recommend you grab a copy of Mark’s book if you want to take your social media marketing to the next level.  You can buy The Tao of Twitter on Amazon today.  

The Rhyme and Reason of Twitter

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Why Twitter is a Musicians Best Friend”

By Dexter Patterson

I don’t know about you but I have never taken Twitter very serious.  To be honest, I thought Twitter was all hype because I couldn’t see the value in it.  I could tweet until I turned blue in the face and still see no results.  All I wanted was more followers but once again that little blue bird failed to deliver.

I was ready to give up on Twitter until my professor assigned a book The Tao of Twitter by Mark W. Schaefer for a recent assignment.  The Tao of Twitter, is the #1 selling book on Twitter in the world and I had no clue it even existed.  I must admit I went into this book extremely skeptical because I had pretty much given up on Twitter.  I had come to the conclusion that Twitter probably only worked for famous people.  Boy was I wrong! Reading Mark’s book has truly changed my life.  If it weren’t for the Tao, I would be just another uneducated and extremely frustrated Twitter user.  For years, I tried marketing my brand to the masses on Twitter.  I have had my fair share of success but I must admit my approach wasn’t very efficient.  Not only was I failing to stay in contact with my loyal fans but I started to lose sight of my target audience.  This is when I had my “a-ha moment.”

It’s time for a new approach.

After reading Mark’s book, I challenged myself to take things to the next level.  I no longer viewed Twitter as a burden but as a potential resource to grow as an artist and businessman.  I now realize Twitter has an endless supply of information and it is full of incredible opportunities.  I now spend my time on Twitter following industry leaders and learning as much as I can from them to better myself.

One of the core principles of The Tao of Twitter is developing a targeted audience.  I know this sounds simple right? But 9 out of 10 artists fail to do this properly.  We assume because we can get a few Facebook likes that everyone likes us.  We assume we are marketing our music to our fans but how much do we really know about these so-called fans?  As musicians, its imperative that we start to market ourselves to people who actually like us.  My professor at UW-Madison Don Stanley said; “Remember we all start at zero”, but if you work hard you will not stay at zero forever.

As artists, we need to try to have a little more patience.  Don’t ever let your want for more fans impact the way you view the fans you currently have.  Why are your current fans so important?  According to Mark Schaefer, “No amount of work, time, or dedication to marketing and social media networking will work if you haven’t surrounded yourself with people who might be interested in you and what you have to say.”  How can you find these dedicated fans?  According to Mark Schaefer, you have to provide them with “meaningful content” that is worthy of their attention.  Your content is what will establish your value on the social web.

We also need to stop wasting our time connecting with everyone.  Focus on connecting with people who offer something positive to your growth as an artist and business professional.  The Tao of Twitter suggests we should seek out connections with the thought leaders in our industry.  “Remember that it’s not essential for somebody to follow you for you to realize some business benefits.  Twitter is a great learning tool; so, if a celebrity, author, industry leader, or professor doesn’t follow you back, relax and just enjoy the information they provide”, said Schaefer.  Remember it’s not always about you.

Sharing is caring…Yes even for Musicians!

We really have to check our egos online and realize that it’s in our best interest to support others. Not only does this show you genuinely care but also it can create opportunities for you to collaborate with other artists.  In addition, collaborations are great because they can help you gain new ears for your music, and new ears can lead to new fans.  We are always so worried about ourselves that sometimes we forget to engage in the social part of social media.  Just keep it real!  “You can’t fake authenticity”, said Schaefer.

We can’t be afraid to give our fans more of us in our marketing efforts.  Fans will always support someone more if they feel a real human connection with that individual.  As an artist, don’t ever be afraid to show people who you really are.  Mr. Schaefer did a guest lecture in our class and he said; “When you write from your own perspective, you have no competition.”  Remember we all have the power to be an original!

In the end, put in the work and be patient.

It’s sad because as artists we are constantly comparing ourselves to the success of others. We are always beating ourselves up if we don’t have instant success.  Social media marketing is hard work.  We need to start focusing on the quality of our music and be more creative with the way we market our content to the public. We need to establish our voice and make it heard on a regular basis. Remember social media is alive and to reap the benefits of it you must live it.  Continue to network with people who make you better because we all need to be pushed in order to reach our full potential.

This post was inspired by my recent coursework at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  I want to send a special shout out to my professor Don Stanley (@3rhinomedia).  I also highly recommend that you grab a copy of Mark’s book if you want to take your social media marketing to the next level.  You can buy The Tao of Twitter on Amazon today!!

Peace and Progress

-DRP

Turning Musicians into marketing experts

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By Dexter Patterson

@drpatterson2

Recently I posted a question on my Facebook page that really got my attention.  I asked my following this question; When you hear the word “Rapper” what’s the first thing you think about?” The post sparked quite the debate and the comments ranged from; “Tupac”, “Eazy E”, “Biggie”, “Chief Keef Bang Bang LOL”, “Artist”, “cellophane” and may favorite “here we go with this shit again”.  However, not a single person mentioned the word business in the entire post.  I mean why aren’t more “rappers” and musicians for that matter viewed as good business people?  Why can’t the majority of independent musicians survive off their God-given talent?  The simple answer is they probably haven’t been taught the basics of good business.

At DRP Marketing Solutions, we are determined to help the average musician become more effective with the online marketing of their music. We want to help turn more “rappers” into self-sufficient business people.  I mean let’s keep it real for a minute.  If you truly love your music, then you should treat your music with as much respect as possible.  Learn how to survive as a businessman first, and you will be able to turn your passion for music into a viable career.

 10 Keys to having Online Marketing Success:

1.  Make things as easy as possible for your supporters. Do not tell them to check out your new song and you haven’t even attached a proper link. No one should have to work harder just to help YOU. YOU have to start thinking about your fans because without them you don’t exist.

2.  Remember to always try to collect as many emails as possible from your fans.  Be creative with it offer exclusive downloads and new band merchandise.  Hold weekly contests via email to encourage active participation.  Sites like Mailchimp are great for artists attempting to create a professional email exchange with their supporters.  Mailchimp also lets you track the effectiveness of your email campaigns.  Knowing how many people are actually opening your emails let’s you analyze which emails are most effective.  Ignoring the statistics of your online presence is pretty much career suicide.  

3.  Stop trying to sell something to people all the time.  First you have to try to build their trust.  Engage with your audience as much as possible. This will create a connection and then you will have more than enough opportunities to sell them something in the future.

4.  Don’t expect overnight success with your online marketing efforts.  The most important thing for you to do is to remain patient, consistent and make the best music possible.  Don’t get caught up in the hype, remember quality will always win over quantity. 

5.  Remember it takes awhile to build a real relationship with someone online.  So when you engage with your target audience you must remember to keep it real with them at all times. There are way too many fake and robotic marketers in the industry.  They do everything with auto respond robots and actually think they are doing something innovative.  I’ll admit automation can help save you some time, but eventually you will start to lose touch with your audience.  I’m not saying you shouldn’t take advantage of the technology but if you use automation use it wisely.  As a small business owner, your relationship with your customer is vital.  What these robotic marketers don’t realize is that they will start to lose some of their customers simply because of their lack of human interaction.

6.  I know a lot of marketing experts use the word target audience, however, most musicians have no idea what this means.  They just add as many people they can on Facebook and Twitter without any rhyme or reason.  The worst thing you can do is waste your time and resources on people who could careless about you.  We can’t please everyone, so you might as well focus your efforts on the few that you can.  Keeping your current fans happy will definitely generate new business.  They are going to be the people who actually share the links to your music.  They are going to be the ones that tell their friend at work about this awesome new artist they found online.

7.  It is extremely important that you work with industry professionals on all your marketing materials.  Everything should be top quality including your EPK, Bio, One Sheet, and photographs.  If you can’t do these things in-house then you need to outsource the work to a designer within your budget.  I have said this before but always remember; How you look online does reflect how you are viewed in the real world.  

8.  When you start marketing your project don’t ever stop thinking about your audience.  It’s easy for musicians to get so caught up in what WE want that WE forget who matters the most……The FANS.

9.  Always keep your promises.  If you offer something to a customer you have to deliver.  Don’t send people trick emails just to get them to click on your new video.  That is a breach of trust and an easy way to lose supporters.

10. Remember online marketing should be social. Constantly remind your supporters that you appreciate them.  I promise they will be a lot more willing to buy something if they feel you genuinely care.      

Have any other questions?  

Follow Me on Twitter: @drpatterson2