Update your YouTube Channel to One Channel or They’ll Do It For You!

SuperCharge Your YouTube Channel coverYouTube is automatically switching everyone over to the new OneChannel format. (If you’ve visited your channel lately, you may have seen the countdown telling you how many days you have left.) Fortunately, the new format has many benefits that will help you with marketing, branding, and search!

My side project, Social Media SuperChargers did a video and slideshare to prepare members for this a while ago. We’re releasing to the public now so that you can all get ready!

IMPORTANT NOTE: Since we first did these, YouTube increased the size of the cover photo to 2560 x 1440.

Here’s the SlideShare:

<div style=”margin-bottom:5px”> <strong> <a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/lynnoconnell1/supercharge-your-you-tube-channel&#8221; title=”Supercharge YOUR You Tube Channel” target=”_blank”>Supercharge YOUR You Tube Channel</a> </strong> from <strong><a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/lynnoconnell1&#8243; target=”_blank”>Lynn O’Connell</a></strong> </div>

And the video, where we discuss more details:

Lynn O'Connell is the Creative Director of O'Connell Meier, a digital + direct marketing firm serving national trade and professional associations. Follow her tweets @omdirect.

Lynn O’Connell is the Creative Director of O’Connell Meier, a digital + direct + social marketing firm creating integrated marketing programs for businesses, nonprofits, and national trade and professional associations.

Follow her tweets @omdirect

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Awesome roundup of FREE Content Marketing eBooks and Cheatsheets

Click for roundup of FREE Content Marketing eBooks and Cheatsheets

I won a copy of this great book -- and now you can get the ebook free, along with 3 more AND cheatsheets

I won a copy of this great book — and now you can get the ebook free, along with 3 more AND cheatsheets

Great resources! Content Marketer’s Resource Box: Free Ebooks and Cheatsheets by @seosmarty  via @sejournal

This is a terrific roundup of FOUR – count ’em – FOUR ebooks plus FIVE cheat sheets. These aren’t throw-away white papers. I won a copy of Content Rules last year and it is well worth reading. Sensible strategy, practical techniques, and lots of useful tips.

Find even more content marketing tips and infographics on my Pinterest Content Marketing board.

Still here? Seriously, click the link. This collection is worth your time.

SuperCharge Your YouTube Channel

Have you switched to the new YouTube One Channel? Social Media SuperCharger’s Lynn O’Connell and Carly A Thorne give you a short and sweet overview of the many new branding, marketing, and call to action opportunities you now have.

<div style=”margin-bottom:5px”> <strong> <a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/lynnoconnell1/supercharge-your-you-tube-channel&#8221; title=”Supercharge YOUR You Tube Channel” target=”_blank”>Supercharge YOUR You Tube Channel</a> </strong> from <strong><a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/lynnoconnell1&#8243; target=”_blank”>Lynn O’Connell</a></strong> </div>

What the New Facebook NewsFeed Means for YOUR Page

Wondering what the new Facebook News Feed changes will mean for YOUR page? A LOT. Page posts will now be segregated into a separate “Following” feed, which means that your posts will no longer flow into the general newsfeed. As Facebook tells us that users spend more than 40% of their time on the newsfeed, that means you need to take action NOW to ensure that your most dedicated fans and members share your content with their friends — that’s the best way to get your content into the general feed.  And, that’s just ONE of the changes. Our Lynn O’Connell worked with @CarlyAThorne to create a short presentation for their social media training group, Social Media Superchargers, to give you a quick overview of what the newsfeed changes will mean to you.

Slideshare: What the New Facebook News Feed Changes Mean for YOUR Page

<div style=”margin-bottom:5px”> <strong> <a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/lynnoconnell1/facebook-news-feed-changes-and-your-page&#8221; title=”Facebook news feed changes and your page” target=”_blank”>Facebook news feed changes and your page</a> </strong> from <strong><a href=”http://www.slideshare.net/lynnoconnell1&#8243; target=”_blank”>Lynn O’Connell</a></strong> </div>

Just being on Facebook is not enough. Your page needs to be engaging, social, and relevant to your members or customers. Most importantly, you need to monitor comments non-stop as people expect answers.

Kamal Bennani Photography

Despite the huge attention lavished on social media, it still accounts for only a fraction of the traffic and leads for US B2B websites according to a new report from Optify.

See on econsultancy.com

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OK, folks, it is time to start thinking about your six-second ads. This could be an amazing tool for associations — How about an official member Vine that your members can share? (And encourage them to make their own, as well.) Or you create a Vine announcing a conference, webinar, or new product and push it out to your members. It’s short, sweet, and easy to share.

Kamal Bennani Photography

Video ads have come to Twitter: A handful or brands are running Vines in Promoted Tweets.

See on mashable.com

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What can your organization learn from social games?

I’m obsessed with gamification, but wish we could come up with a more business-friendly name! The “game” connection makes people think they need to turn their website or portal into an overt game, which is what leads to some of the absurd and meaningless badges. Instead, people need to think about how the core concepts engage, connect, and motivate users. For example, my marketing firm works with many trade and professional associations. We’re looking at ways to change information flow, especially to new members. Most associations bombard new members with a ton of printed and emailed info. Switching to an approach that instead gives them just the information they need to take the next step, coupled with positive social reinforcement as they complete steps, could ultimately lead to more committed members. But they never need to think they are playing a “game”. The same goes for our political and advocacy clients… their work is too serious to be a game, but incorporating gamification techniques consistently delivers results.

Here’s what game techniques can do for your organization:

  • Reward interaction! Give points for every action… commenting on a blog post, sharing an event, searching for an article, participating in forums or groups.
  • Introduce benefits, features, and information in bite-size pieces. Games don’t give you all the rules and features when you sign up. (Unlike associations that send you massive new member kits.) Don’t dump all the information at once but don’t expect people to find it on their own either. Decide what you want members to do, figure out how that is different for new and experienced members, and then encourage the right action at the right time. Checklists and tips customized by member “level” can produce big results.
  • Reward exploration of benefits and products. What’s the key to retaining members or customers? Getting them to take advantage of everything you offer. Reward them for exploring, downloading, checking out new features. Use checklists, levels, badges — whatever works.
  • Reward daily engagement. Every game out there gives rewards to players for checking in daily. Do the same thing for your members!
  • Encourage everyone to create and share content. Your members are experts in your field. Incentivize them to write blog posts, start discussion threads, comment, create graphics, submit proposals to speak. Take a look at the kind of engagement that your site and your organization needs and then create a reward system that encourages people to take action.
  • Show your members how to jump in and help you. Is your association understaffed? (Who isn’t?) Consider adding missions where members can earn points or achievements by completing specific tasks. That doesn’t have to mean volunteering to serve on a committee… it could be helping with tagging archived articles, completing surveys, or even typing up meeting notes! You could even allow members to set up missions!
  • Reward members for networking, mentoring, and connecting. It’s all about interaction. Build a system that makes it fun and easy to connect.
  • Recognize members for their achievements! That can mean badges, but go beyond and share their success with their colleagues! We all know some members are more active than others. Let them shine.

What is a reward? Your reward system does NOT have to be expensive.  Recognition, for example, is free. Plus, think about how games work — often, you need to reach a certain level in order to unlock new opportunities.  Discounts, contests, and give-aways certainly can add value to your site, but, you’ll be rewarding the members who are adding value to your membership. That ultimately helps you MAKE money by making the group more exciting and interesting to new prospects.

That’s just a tiny preview of how gamification techniques can revitalize your website, engage your members, improve retention, connect new and seasoned members, and appeal to younger prospects. O’Connell Meier is actively looking for a few groups who want to explore these new techniques. We’ll help you analyze your needs, evaluate cost-effective programs that may be able to work with your existing website and databases, and design and implement your program — and the first few groups to sign on will enjoy discounts on our time and discounts from gamification sites/programmers. Call Rich Meier today at 866-391-1415 (ext. 92) or email him at rmeier (at) omdirect.com. Ask him about our experience with Zynga’s Player Advisory Committee!

Lynn O'Connell is the Creative Director of O'Connell Meier, a digital + direct marketing firm serving national trade and professional associations. Follow her tweets @omdirect.

Lynn O’Connell is the Creative Director of O’Connell Meier, a digital + direct marketing firm serving national trade and professional associations. Follow her tweets @omdirect.

Do You Have A Social Content Strategy?

Associations have so much content to work with! In this article, Kelsey Jones outlines a few ways you can make your content more engaging on social media sites. Instead of forcing readers to click through, pull out key quotes, ask questions, and take steps to engage readers right there, right now.

Kamal Bennani Photography

We all know that content on websites is important, but what about content on social media sites? There are countless companies that have amazing, well-written websites, but when it comes to content strategy on social media… they fall a bit short.

See on marketingland.com

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Is your association truly social?

This post caught my attention because I’ve spent much of the past few months talking to associations who are facing huge challenges.

Without social, you are neglecting your audience. If your business isn’t social, it’s time to give your marketing a makeover. Let’s face it, if all your friends decide their new favorite place is the local lounge and you’re still sticking to the old tried-and-true corner café, you’re just out of the loop, which translates to out of the conversation. According to Hubspot, US internet users spend 3x more minutes on blogs and social networks than on email.

via Building Social into Marketing is a Significant Competitive Advantage.

Members are retiring, students aren’t converting to membership after graduation, new members aren’t sticking around. Some groups are doing a tremendous amount online, some aren’t. Most have Facebook pages, Twitter streams, Flickr accounts, etc. Yet, all too often, the association’s social streams are staid corporate communications, simply press releases or announcements packaged in new formats. That’s not enough to make your association truly social.

It’s time to integrate social media into your organization’s DNA. How? Start by thinking of social media as a conversation, then look at all your social media. Are you engaging members in meaningful conversations? Or are you making announcements they can take or leave? Are you actively providing member service via social channels? Do members ask questions online? Why not? If they do ask, do you answer promptly? (I can’t believe how many pages I’ve seen where questions are unanswered for days and even weeks.)

Your association still has much to offer, even in this era of instant access to unbelievable troves of information. But, it’s time to go beyond the tried-and-true approaches and embrace social media throughout your organization. That doesn’t mean having a communications staffer spend 10 hours a week managing social streams. It means involving every staffer from the Executive Director down, engaging volunteer leaders, and building social media into the DNA of your organization.

More Twitter Contests

More Twitter contests every day! Today, Macheist convinced me to buy their software bundle (12 programs for $39) by giving 25% to charity AND throwing in two additional programs in exchange for following them and tweeting about the deal. And, they promoted forwarding news to a friend by offering an additional 2 programs if a friend signs up.

As more companies turn to Twitter contests, the effectiveness will fall. But, for now, this could be an opportunity for associations and charities to partner with companies. They donate a percentage to your cause as an incentive to help close the sales… and in exchange, perhaps you promote the contest on your site and your Twitter feed.

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