The Ten Biggest Lies About Social Media and Your Business

In the world of social media, it is hard to navigate the best practices for your business. Companies may try to tell you what the best practices are, but how are they working for your business? Are you looking for more? Trying to up your social media game for your business? Here’s the top ten lies companies are spreading about social media practices for businesses and how you can overcome them.


You can’t just come out and ask people to follow/retweet/comment/like/share…

But you can. Actually, it’s even encouraged. Think about it in terms of inbound marketing. You are directly asking your customer to do something for you. But first, you have to build their trust. Posting relevant content that is both sound and appealing to your audience helps boost your credibility and makes it easier for the people you are interacting with to help you boost your content. Never be afraid to ask.


Reach is your most important metric.

This could be the biggest lie in the social media industry. Reach is important. As is engagement, post performance… essentially every piece of your analytics. Looking in depth into social media analytics once every quarter is a great way to gauge what is clicking with your customers and what is not. This helps you line up with them to communicate with them better. However, each piece – whether reach, engagement, clicks, and so on – is just as important as every other piece. Reach may only tell you how far it went on Facebook, but engagement will tell you with that reach how many people actually interacted with your content. Remember this.


All you need is social media.

False. Why? The main point of a social media presence for a business is to sell. You want to be using your social media to drive customers to your business to make a purchase and make you money. In order to do this successfully, a website that is fully-functioning, responsive, and current is just as – if not more – important as your Facebook page. Keep in mind that your social media can act more as a channel to the main hub rather than the target.


Delete or ignore negative comments. Actually, just disable comment posting entirely to protect your brand.

Believe it or not, negative comments are not as bad as they seem. Of course they are hurtful, but this can act as an advantage to your business.


First off, deleting negative comments seems shady to perspective customers. How can you have a rating of 3 stars when every single review is flawless? It also discredits your business – because no one is perfect.


In addition, negative comments can be a host of customer service opportunities. Responding timely and appropriately to customer service issues on a public front shows customers you are attentive and want you customers happy. It also acts as a great damage-control tool and helps increase your online presence. Let the negative work its magic for you. Like the old time saying, “there’s no such thing as bad press.”


Hire an intern to do all your social media work for you.

While we do believe in intern programs and the opportunities they provide, hiring an intern strictly to manage your social media accounts could go through a few different scenarios. Most importantly, you do not want a full-time student with limited experience handling some of the issues social media can present without someone there to guide them. Whether this is a supervisor, policy, or admin on a page, it is important that interns are provided with some direction and not just handed the passwords to your accounts. Give them expectations, let them shadow others in your business to get an idea of the company, create goals on social media to ensure your intern is getting the most out of their internship while also giving you the social media supervision you need.


Automate your updates to save yourself time.

Auto-posting through social media suites may seem like a step in the right direction to saving yourself time on social media, but it’s not always the best policy. Automated messages can seem rigid and timed to your followers which in turn turns them off to what you want them paying attention to – your business. Try posting in real time as often as you can. Make sure your content is timely and current with what is going on in the world as well to help increase engagement.


Auto-publish content to save time when sharing content to several sites.

Auto-publish is never a good idea. So often after I hit the post button on a blog, I will find a grammar error, forget to include tags, have to modify a layout… change something before it reaches the masses via my social media. Auto-publish may work against you, especially if you accidently click the publish button before you were really ready. Remember, once it is on the Internet, it is there forever – especially in terms of social media. Keep this in mind before setting up auto-post to your social accounts from your website.


Focus on Facebook.

Facebook may have a huge interest base now, but what about tomorrow? Social media is always changing a moving. For instance, YouTube proceeded Facebook in unique users for the first time this summer, meaning more people are using YouTube than Facebook for the very first time. This is leading to a big change in the social media world. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket – disperse your content and customer interaction between several social platforms.


You need to be on every single social media platform.

Tying into the previous point – while you want to diversify your social media platforms, you also don’t want to consume yourselves with more than you can handle social media wise. For us, a few big platforms we like to encourage our businesses to try out and see how they work for them: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Google Plus. Invest a little time on each and see what practices work best for your business to design your social media efforts to best fit your customers.


You don’t need an email if you have social media.

This couldn’t be more contrary from the truth. In fact, you need an email more than ever with a social media account, perhaps even one that is specifically set up to handle social media management. This email will help you received notifications and communicate with customers more effectively.



Practice makes perfect, and with social media we are helping businesses take control of their social and online media and make it work best for their businesses. Contact Maximize today to learn more.

Social Media Series Part I: The Hashtag

I once saw a tweet about how a user saw an old flip-phone cell phone that had a pound key on the keypad. They wondered why they would ever need a hashtag back then because Twitter was not a thing yet.

As mindless as this tweet sounds, this is a prime example of how prominent the hashtag has become in our world today. No longer do we view a pound sign as a part of a numeric keypad. Instead, we view it as a crucial part of our social media presence.

The hashtag may have begun as a Twitter-exclusive, but now it has migrated to almost every platform in the social world. But, does each hashtag means something different on social media? And how can you use this to benefit your business on social media? Or should you even use them in your professional field? Here are the answers to your questions.


Yes, you should most definitely be using hashtags

The hashtag is a means of categorization. It increases search optimization, increases engagement, and aids in potential retweets. The science behind the hashtag proves that using the correct hashtags will benefit your online presence for the better, however there is a bit of science to the method. What is appropriate and how many to use could be the indicators.

Use no more than two per update

Research has shown that tweets, updates, and statuses perform better through the use of hashtags, but excessive use will hinder them. Research suggests sticking to two extremely relevant and beneficial hashtags to increase the potential for your media.

How to determine hashtag relevance

Your hashtags need to be tailored to your content. For example, if you are a business tweeting about a flash sale promotion you are having, you would probably include a hashtag such as #flashsale in your tweet.

Having trouble figuring out what hashtag to use? Look at the What’s Trending tab for inspiration on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, or other social platforms for ideas. Still knee-deep in uncertainty? Check out for ideas on relevant and related hashtags and how you can best incorporate them in your statuses.


Hashtags on Social Media

There is a level on appropriateness when it comes to hashtags on different media platforms. Since just about everyone is using them, it’s up to you to understand what works and what doesn’t when it comes to hashtags based on the social media platform.


This is where it all began. Twitter has a great system for hashtags, using them to categorize tweets on its site. Tweets with hashtags get two times more engagement than those that do not have hashtags, making them 55 percent more likely to be retweeted. But excessive hashtags tanked engagement. Stick to the 1-2 hashtag rule and you should be good to go.


There seems to be no true rule of thumb here. The more the merrier, at least what studies show. Hashtags on Instagram are utilized to help build community and distinguish uniqueness and detailed information. Interactions are highest on posts with 11 or more hashtags. They may also be your best bet for growing your follower count on Instagram, as well.


It seems as though Facebook users are less likely to hop on the hashtag train. With the studies performed, statuses without hashtags performed better than those that included them. But be mindful to tailor your strategy to your audience. Perhaps try including them in your content if your page is more business-minded by Twitter standards and see how your posts perform before continuing the use of hashtags on your Facebook account.


What Google+ has going for it here is that it already creates the hashtags for you, taking one less step out of the challenging marketing strategy online. You can always add more through comments and your posts to increase your search opportunities.


Pinterest uses hashtags to brand and specify. You can actually click on hashtags to find more relevant information to your linked content. There also seems to be no limit on how many you can include here. The more you have, the more engaged your content might be.



The hashtag is nothing to fear, and Maximize recognizes its great potential. Let Maximize help you understand how to best utilize hashtags on all your social media platforms today.

Intro to LinkedIn Company Pages – Part 1

LinkedIn is continually growing in it’s popularity and doesn’t show signs of slowing down. It helps bridge the gaps that other social media channels aren’t able to or just not used to this extent yet.

A few years ago, in the Fall of 2012, LinkedIn announced that a new look for its company pages would be featured. From a users perspective, this release became an effort in bringing a better experience to LinkedIn members. But what did the rollout mean for marketers? As Mike Grishaver, Product Management & Monetization at LinkedIn, said, “this means a more powerful way to build relationships with your target audience on LinkedIn.” With its emphasis on visual and relevant content, LinkedIn’s new company pages now give businesses a more complete set of tools to do effective marketing. but why should you care about marketing on LinkedIn at all? We’ll let the facts speak for themselves.

With over 161 million registered users in over 200 countries and territories, more than two million companies with LinkedIn company pages, and professionals signing up at a rate of approximately two new members per second, LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional social network.

It’s hard not to have LinkedIn on your marketing radar!

With its affluent and influential membership, LinkedIn represents a valuable demographic for marketers. A user can easily discover the people employed by a certain company, or the various types of businesses a certain person has worked for. So if you’re looking to connect with industry professionals and generate leads for your business, LinkedIn should be an integral part of your social media marketing strategy.

Here are 4 tidbits to consider about your LinkedIn company page:

1.) Company Reach

Without putting any efforts into building your company on LinkedIn, chances are many of your employees are updating their personal profiles to show where they work. Every person that connects with that profile may potentially click on your company name and be navigated to your company page and every employee has the opportunity to promote your company. Take advantage of this!

2.) Product Awareness

Company pages on LinkedIn provide a section for talking about specific products. Not only are consumers learning about the products and services your company offers, but they can also see how many of their connections have recommended them.

3.) Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Did you know that LinkedIn Jobs appear in search results and on twitter? By having a LinkedIn company page, you will greatly increase your visibility across the web. Additionally, LinkedIn is its own search engine for finding jobs and companies, and if you’re not there, you will have missed a great opportunity to be found by a prospect, lead, or potential employee.

4.) Lead Generation

LinkedIn company updates allow you to link to marketing offers. This will draw in leads who are in need of your content or offers. When you post updates to LinkedIn, just as you would on Facebook or Google+, you suddenly have the means to drive huge amounts of traffic and leads back to your website.

We are in the process of writing several eBooks on LinkedIn that we’ll feature periodically. At the end, we’ll combine these offers into one enormous package deal. Stay tuned and also check out our Resource tab in the top navigation.

Enjoy this FREE eBook below to help you understand and get started with your LinkedIn Company Page!

Writing Topics for LinkedIn Marketing Success

Let’s examine an illustration for this example. It may not be perfect but let’s give it a shot. Picture the World as the world of Digital Marketing and one of the continents as “Social Media”. If you zoom in and see the individual states, one of those would be “LinkedIn” and perhaps a city in the state of LinkedIn would be “Marketing”. Well we’re driving in downtown Marketing on “Creating Topics Avenue”. What things are coming to mind as you drive down the avenue?

Now that you’re in the state of formulating questions to ask, here’s some food for thought. Remember though, keep your eyes on the road! No texting and driving.

Key questions in picking your topic… and identify your target market…

(Q) What kind of people are you trying to reach?

I’m sure you already know the type of people that your services are directed to. You see them constantly, they contact you, as well, if necessary. That will tell you what kind of person are they and how you can treat them.

(Q) What do they look like?

Are they fat or skinny? Male or female? Old, young or middle-aged?

(Q) What are they looking for?

What is the final goal they are after, based on the service you provide? What feeling are they trying to achieve with it? Do they need it to feel happy? Do they need it to survive? A lot of needs must be met just for our basic survival.

(Q) What do you actually do for them?

Maybe you are already offering a service for that audience. That will give you a great vision of what exactly you need to inform any new people that fit into that same audience.

(Q) What kind of information would they be interested to know about and pay for?

You already know the needs of your customers; you know exactly what kind of information will be highly helpful to them in order to help them to satisfy those needs. Why don’t you just create a great info-product about it?

(Q) How much money are they actually paying you for it?

Knowing how much you usually charge them for your service is a very important indicator, because if you decide to create a product like a report, video training, software, or something directly related to your audience, you may simply be able to figure out the price tag you can easily stamp on it.

(Q) How would they like to reach that content?

Is it Video, Audio, Written, or Blogging? This is important to know. You may just think about it. Think on their limitations to read, hear, watch or use the computer. If they can do everything, you can just ask them what they would like to know about stuff. Do they like to read? Do they like to watch videos? Do they like to hear audios? Do they like social networks?

(Q) Where are they from?

Maybe you have an audience that comes from other cities or even countries. That will happen a lot on LinkedIn. You need to target every one and adapt your information to all of them at the same time.

(Q) What are your competitors offering to your audience?

In the marketing world, it is very important to study the competition that targets your exact audience. What do they generally offer? What things do they offer that you don’t? Do they have more clients? Do they work additional hours? Do they cover a lot more needs than you?

(Q) Can you offer a better service/product than your Competitors?

Once you know everything about your successful competitors you can just offer the same thing, but with your personal touch plus a lot more great things that they are not offering. You can have special offers, free samples, free call consultation, special discounts, etc.

These questions are very important in deciding how to establish your business over LinkedIn. You can position almost any kind of business over LinkedIn because LinkedIn is more than just a website or a service; it’s more than a simple social network; LinkedIn is a professional social platform composed with a large audience of people with real human needs who are waiting for you and your service to satisfy them.

5 LinkedIn Don’ts

Getting accustomed to any new social media platform can be overwhelming. Each one has their own standards for set-up and behavior, and it may seem hard to learn the ways of a new site. If you’re just getting started or not sure if you’re using LinkedIn quite right, here are some don’ts to get you on the right track.

1. Don’t Leave Any Space Blank

That’s right, fill it out and make sure you fill it all out! LinkedIn knows what information is important to your business because it was made for businesses. If they’re asking for it, put it in. Logo, location, links, oh my!

Remember, putting a brief description of your business is super important! You need to let those who connect with you what your business is all about. This should be short but thorough. Let people know what products or services (or both!) your business offers without getting too wordy. Keep in mind that people don’t want to read long pieces of text. The goal is to help people learn what you’re about without putting them to sleep.

2. Don’t Neglect to Check Who and What are Connected to You

One of the great features of LinkedIn is that it connects every profile and page that’s associated with your business automatically. This includes job listings you post, current employees, and former employees. While that makes it easy for your business and employees to connect with each other, it also makes it easy for others to appear to be associated with your business. This isn’t something to worry about as much as it is to be aware of. Just make sure you’re regularly checking who’s connected with you to make sure everything is legit.

3. Don’t Neglect Features Made for Businesses

Did I mention that LinkedIn is made for business? I did? Good. Because its made for business, they’ve got tools that can be extremely helpful like “Groups” and “Events.”

LinkedIn groups are lot like Facebook ones, so if you’ve got Facebook mastered then you’re a pro already! Finding groups in your industry or niche can dramatically increase the number of connections you have on the site because the groups contain people looking for the same things as you. Getting involved in a group is easy. You can search for groups that are relevant to you or you can make your own. Just make sure that once you’re in a group, you continue to be genuine and helpful.

Making events on LinkedIn is also easy. It just takes a minute and once you’ve got all the details set up, you can invite your connections. To amplify you event more, you can use Facebook and Twitter if you think your connections don’t make a large enough audience. Creating an event is a great way to let people in your network know what you’re doing.

4. Don’t Forget to Ask Questions

LinkedIn Answers is another tool that is super helpful. In fact, it’s helpful enough to deserve its own “don’t.” Don’t just answer questions, ask them, too! Using this tool can help you build credibility as an expert in your industry. While being helpful and giving accurate answers is important, asking them is as well. By asking questions that you genuinely want an answer for, you attract answers from people with similar interests, helping you expand both your knowledge and your network.

5. Don’t Forget to Utilize Applications

It can be difficult to determine which apps to connect to your LinkedIn. You don’t want overwhelm your network with content they are going to see from you elsewhere. Here are three apps that can enhance and supplement the information you share with your network on LinkedIn.

The BlogLink app is great for keeping up with all the blogs of people in your network. Instead of having to track down who’s blogging day by day, this will pull all the people you’re connected to’s blogs together and feed them through your profile. It’s a great tool to help you stay connected and up to date with those in your network.

The Amazon Reading List app can help share what books you’re reading with your network, as well as keep up with what people in your network are reading. It’s a great way to keep up with what people with similar tastes or people in your industry are reading!

The Company Buzz app is going to be the app you’ve been looking for if you’re one who tries to constantly stay on top of your company’s online presence. It takes everything people are saying about your website online and pulls them all together for you. Comments, tweets, and blog posts about your business all in one place? Life just got a whole lot easier.

5 Reasons Your Business Should Be On LinkedIn

You’ve got a business Facebook and a Twitter, so you’re covered on the social media side of your online presence, right? Not so much. LinkedIn has earned its spot among the social media platform elite, and it’s pretty easy to see why. Here are just 5 of the many reasons why your business should be on LinkedIn.

1. Built for Business

LinkedIn is a social media site made for businesses. It’s a place for businesses to connect with other business as well as individuals online. Members are business- oriented, and include entrepreneurs, marketers, and other professionals. This makes LinkedIn a great place to not only promote your business, products, and services, but it can also help you connect with potential employees if your business needs them. Because LinkedIn is so business-oriented, they provide tons of tools to help you accomplish your social media goals.

2. Free and Easy

You love that social media is free, but the set-up process can be overwhelming. Just log in with your personal account (if you don’t have a personal account, tsk tsk!), and find the “Companies” menu. LinkedIn will guide you through the rest! Don’t know what to include or thinking “do I really have to fill out everything?” Yes, you have to fill out everything! Every piece of information about your company is important. People what to know where to get your product or service, how to connect with you in other ways, and other things about your business. Give them everything!

3. Members Know What They’re Looking For

You want to make sure you’re as easy to find as possible. Make sure you’re in the right category or industry, otherwise you might hard to find. You don’t want your customers or partners to deem you unfindable! This links back to filling out all the information that is requested of you. Make sure it’s done correctly, so you can be found and connected with. Remember, you want to create and maintain relationships with your social media presence.

4. Link Your Company Blog

You’ve been putting out some awesome and helpful content through your blog, right? (Hint: the correct answer is “right”) You want to make sure everyone sees that awesome and helpful content, and you want to use social media to do so. Going to every social media platform to link to your latest and greatest blog post can be time-consuming, so LinkedIn does the work for you. Just include the feed to your blog in your profile, and LinkedIn will push that content out to those that are following you. If you are continually getting that great content from your blogs out to those that follow you, it will increase the attractiveness of your business’ profile on LinkedIn, and will be likely to keep people coming back to your profile and your business.

5. Everything Gets Connected for You

LinkedIn makes sure everything on the site that has to do with your business stays connected. This means that all of the accounts, links, and feeds are connected to your business’ profile. This includes any job listings you might have put on the site (remember to utilize this feature), current employees, and former employees. This feature makes it easy for you to make sure everyone that says they’re affiliated with your company is being truthful, but it does give important responsibility of going through and checking on that.