Insider Secret for Facebook Advertisers

Social media is becoming a serious contender in the online advertising realm. Facebook, with it’s reach of 400 million worldwide, low cost advertising and laser targeting is Google’s biggest competitor.

One insider trick that most Facebook advertisers haven’t realized is the ability to use Shutterstock images free.

Yep – real, high quality, Shutterstock images – FREE.

How to use free premium stock images for your ad:

At stage 3 of ad creation, just click “Search” and Facebook will allow you choose your Shutterstock image – already custom fitted to you ad size.

Facebook ads

Facebook Advertising

Isn’t that cool?

Don’t forget to share this tip!

Social Media Brings About the Downfall of Irish Government [A Rant]

Irish Water protestsThe Irish government are crumbling under public pressure through social media.

Ireland as a whole has engendered a particularly stereotypical view in the eyes of the world – that of the friendly, happy-go-lucky, often drunk, sometimes fiery people. Big-hearted people who are easy-going and humorous about life. Equally as likely to greet a catastrophe with the same quip that might be used to celebrate a friend’s wedding. in fact, the national slogan might have been “ah sure, it’ll be grand.”

We just couldn’t bother getting ourselves worked up about anything. It was just too much trouble to be bothered.

Imagine then, the surprise that the rest of the world felt when all of a sudden, this small nation started pouring out into the streets, with banners and placards and loudhailers, decrying the government and its lies. Shouting at government ministers and standing in front of their cars, resisting police efforts to contain them, swamping the TV and newspapers with anger and fury.

What the hell happened there? 

I am talking of course, about the “Irish Water” issue. The issue that threw the rest of the world into confusion as to why these ignorant little Irish people dare protest against paying for water when the rest of the world did so already.

What? Did they seriously think they could have something free that everyone else was paying for?

Some Pre-Social media History

Before social media – Facebook in particular – connected everyone and their neighbour’s dog’s fan page, the people of Ireland just went about their daily business. They paid stamp duty on their homes (tax on buying a house – was about 10% last I looked). Paid the local taxes – bins etc. Paid the motor tax that didn’t pay to repair any of the disastrous “feats” of engineering that pass for public transportation, but went into local taxation too. Paid the incredibly high costs associated with buying a house in Ireland (typical house prices rose to approx half a million Euro, and in a lot of cases much higher again, just before 2008). Water rates went through a name change and became part of general taxation. (The Irish government should write a book on re-branding – they are global leaders in the art).

Then the economy took a downturn and our banks, who had mishandled our money and driven our people into poverty needed to be bailed out by our “government.”

And so, the government borrowed heavily (to the tune of 1.2 Billion Euro – yes, I said BILLION) to save the jobs of those who were ripping off the people around them.

Then those *ankers in the Eurozone decided to call in the debt and so the Irish government started a series of austerity measures that started with a new property tax. If you owned property, you were now to be liable for a yearly tax on it.

“But we paid our stamp duty!”

“We don’t care, now you are paying this too.”

“But i own an apartment and legally I have to pay €1000 a year maintenance fees, I’ve paid stamp duty on that too, and the local taxes that you brought into general taxation.”

“Stop being so ungrateful. Look at all the stuff we do for you.”

And so, with some blood left in our veins, the Eurocrats decided they could squeeze some more out of us and introduced the Universal Social Charge. This was basically a tax for social stuff. Not Facebook and Twitter, but bins and water etc.

Did you spot the bit where I said “bins and water?”

The bins that we pay private companies to collect (and still do) and the bins that apartment owners are paying €1000 to have emptied along with their grass cut and the building painted every 4 years.

And the water services that were included in “water rates” that went through a name change to be included in general taxation? Yep – paying twice for it at this point.

“But not to worry – it’s only going to be a two year process, then we will be out of the woods and we can scrap it, trust us!”

“Ah – okay then. That’s great. Yay.”

Five years later, we still have Property Tax and we still have Universal Social Tax and now the government are telling us we need a water tax.

Why? Because all those taxes that were collected for local councils to put into roads and pipes and infrastructure never went into roads and pipes and infrastructure. And since us mortals live in the communities where the money is not going into the infrastructure, we know we are being lied to.

So now, thanks to the government not doing what it was supposed to with our taxes, they want to introduce a water tax. Sorry, I will rephrase that: a new water tax. A third one, in fact, if you’ve been keeping count!

So what has this rather long preamble got to do with Facebook?

Well, somewhere along the line, the once happy-go-lucky “ah, sure it’ll be grand” people of Ireland started to become angry at the treatment the government were dishing out. At first it was the kind of anger that was like “Ah, dad! You shouldn’t take that from the other guy’s dad. Kick his ass.” Then it progressed to “Dad, why are you stealing my pocket money while I am asleep?”

We were blaming the Europrats when we really should have been blaming our own idiots. Our own idiots who seemed like they were fighting our case began to levy so many burdensome taxes on us that it started to make life hell in Ireland.

Emigration went up – the highest in many, many years.

Unemployment hit an all time high.

Homelessness has been rising at an alarming rate.

Suicide among young men (many of them fathers) is at a higher level than ever in recorded history.

Meanwhile, if you read Animal Farm, you might imagine the Irish government as being like the pigs who took over the farmer’s house and are sitting at the table stuffing their faces with food and wine, chanting “two legs good, four legs bad.”

Enter Facebook!

It is with great irony that Facebook recently set up a headquarters here in Dublin, because it is Facebook that almost single-handedly brought the people of Ireland together in their social media revolution against the corruption of a government that has been taking and taking and taking but giving nothing back.

The people of Ireland, in their increasing anger, stopped looking at cat videos and singing dogs and decided the government didn’t need to “Elf themselves” this Crimbo, but could go and “Eff themselves.”

Protest pages started cropping up for every town and county across the country. Facebook shares of videos didn’t have cats or dogs, unless those cats and dogs were part of groups of thousands of humans who were out marching in protect. Videos of local people standing in front of water meter installers (who work for a private company that can put the price up should they feel like it in the future). YouTube clips of CC TV footage from within government went viral. Twitter started chirping #IrishWater and the call was taken up around the country.

Marches that brought over 150,000 people (of a 5 Million population) out on the streets at once were organised through Facebook pages and those Facebook fans who decided to get involved in spreading the word. Even now, there is no lessening of the#IrishWater hashtag. It’s a hashtag that speaks for #revolution in the hearts and souls of the Irish people and one that has done something that nothing else has ever done in Irish history.

It has united the people who live on the northside of Dublin with those from the southside. It has united the people who live in Dublin with those who live outside of Dublin (yes, even with those from Cork!) It has unified the Irish people beyond the petty differences we had held onto for many years and it has made us proud to stand together and fight against  cowardly, incapable bunch of bureaucrats.

With such a feat organised through social media, it makes me wonder why we need politicians at all when we can organise something on this scale through a bunch of Facebook pages.

So far, the Irish government has been in control of our media, and who sees what. Now, we are all our own publishers of content through social media. We form our own press unions and we broadcast our own messages. The PR of the people of Ireland will continue to permeate social media – where it will shake the foundation of corruption and lies that strive to silence it.

You can follow what is and will remain a fascinating turn of events through the #IrishWater hashtag on Facebook, Google Plus (YouTube) and Twitter.

Here’s a selection of related material:


Facebook to Challenge Google Plus?

Facebook like don't like laptop keysFacebook and Google Plus haven’t played in the same sand pit as each other since they began, and that’s not likely to continue. Google’s local pages have continually evolved to counteract “black hat” tactics to rank restaurants and other public services highly.

Now Facebook has decided to get in on the action by introducing their new Places directory. It’s a curious mix of its graph search functionality with fan pages. And it’s adding reviews where they can easily be seen. Considering the marketing potential many have found in Facebook’s ‘check in’ by offering free drinks and other rewards to customers who tell their friends where they are, it’s not too surprising an outcome.

The Places interface is like a Pinterest meets Instagram. You can try it out here:

What’s very exciting about this development, is that real pictures from patrons can be seen, showing exactly what the location looks like, opinions on its value for money and budget – and a link through to the establishment’s Facebook page where you can see what’s going on there.

Ever been bored at home but couldn’t figure out where to go? This is an ideal tool to discover what’s around you – with Facebook’s 400 million, extremely active and engaged, users far outweighing Google Plus’ unsubstantiated 300 million it also seems set to provide much better ideas than Google Maps.

It’s also an ideal way to plan a city break or other holiday. For example, to prepare for a trip to London, I might find the following information:

Screenshot - 13_11_2014 , 10_10_52

At a glance, this tells us that there are over 6 million people who enjoy living in or visiting London and that there have been over 30 million check in’s.

Notice, that aside from Restaurants, Hotels, etc. there is a tab for “More” which gives us these options:

Facebook Places

Schools are a topic that always needs a lot of investigation for parents and it’s interesting to see its addition here. Another key point about Places is the ability to look through the “Cities Nearby.”  In this example I chose Windsor, and then clicked on the “Hotels” tab:

Windsor on facebook Places

I can see that The Royal Adelaide Hotel have taken the time to add dollar symbols to show what kind of budget their accommodation lies within and so clicking on this image leads me to their Facebook page where I can easily browse through their photos, guest comments, videos and reviews.

All in all, this is a much more rewarding experience than browsing online for Trip Adviser reviews or Google Plus reviews. It adds a much more “social” level to the process of decision making.

By clicking the “See All Hotels” link on the page above we are brought to Facebook’s Graph Search results and even given an option to filter results to show who we know who may have been there or have liked the page:

Facebook Places Tutorial

All in all, Facebook Places is an exciting new development in social media and will definitely challenge Google Plus for dominance of the local review market.

There is also a new opportunity here for business owners to market their businesses online with Social SEO rather than paid advertising.

If you found this post helpful or interesting, please share it, sign up for my newsletter and comment (below the related posts).I

The Fine Line Between Business and Personal Social Media

Expert Author Helen WinderWe all know how much Social Media platforms are used these days not just in business but in our personal lives.

I am sure for the majority of people there will be Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, Instagram, Flikr, YouTube etc.

Many businesses now employ people to manage their social media visibility or share the task between a number of employees. But, how do you manage the cross over between ‘business’ and ‘personal’ connections?

I have been told on a number of occasions that people are finding it hard to control how far a member of staff takes the ‘connections’ with current and potential clients/contacts and have found that they are not just connecting with them as a business but from their own personal accounts.

One of the main concerns is that if/when that member of staff leaves their employment, what can you do to ensure that they disconnect from their contacts/clients.

Through working and supporting with Social Media as part of their role they have also been able to build up their own network, preparing their own ready made network of contacts for future needs.

The other issue that seems to come forward a lot is, How do you control that personal contact when out of hours? There seems to be a lot of banter that happens and I have to be honest from what I have heard, a lot of relationship building that is not of a business context.

This can be detrimental to a company as it really does paint the business and their owners in a very different light.

Here are a few suggestions:

Have a clause written in your employment contracts that states clearly the use of social media platforms to connect with contacts/clients of the business is not permitted and further action will be taken if this is not adhered to.

Only permit the use of your business social media accounts to be used by members of staff with no cross promotions etc.

If on leaving their position in your company, that you spot they are connected to your contacts/clients, request that they disconnect from those people and if this is not carried out then further action will be taken.

Stress to all employees the importance of maintaining that divide between personal and business connections. And the importance for a company’s reputation and growth.

If any ‘other business’ and by this I mean if a conversation goes further than just general chitchat to flirtatious conversations from both parties involved, then this could be seen to be a situation which could end in written warning and even dismissal.

If you can afford it, why not outsource your Social Media that way you are taking the risk away and freeing time to focus on other tasks.

If you are still unsure then take some legal advice from your solicitor.

At the end of the day, if you employ people you have to be very clear on where the divide starts and ends when it comes to Social Media and you have to safe guard your business and reputation.

It is as simple as that… No cross over at all.

Article Source:

Article Source:

9 Mistakes Businesses Make in Social Media [Infographic]

Pinterest Adds Promoted Pins for Business Users

It was bound to happen. Pinterest have added promoted pins for business users. This is bound to be a great resource for both retailers and book promoters.

Thanks to Ileane Smith for this overview:

Visual Marketing for Social Media is Still Trending Towards Video

There are many reasons you need to pay attention to the visual aspect of your marketing campaign and not surprisingly, social media is one of those reasons.

Here’s 10 reasons in visual form – note that video is still on the rise.

Courtesy of: The Seen

Twitter Advertising Gets Easier

The social media world is going crazy over Facebook advertising, and it sure does beat Google Adwords. But Twitter are catching up – and it seems from their take on advertising that deciding factors on who sees your ads are much simpler than the other giants’ set up.


How To Succeed In Social Media Marketing If Facebook Bites The Dust

pick of the day2Remember MySpace? Bebo? No? Well at one time they were huge. Then they weren’t. There’s no archaeological evidence as to why. It’s just a fact.

Last year there was a mass exodus of the 18-25 demographic from Facebook. It is possible that a meteor could wipe it out just like the mighty dinosaurs. What then?

Here’s a back-to-basics post about how to succeed in social media no matter what the  platform throws at you! Just click here to read.

An Introduction To Google Plus Pages For Businesses And Brands

Google Plus for businessSince Google first launched their social networking site Google Plus, millions of people have joined the website. Some potential members weren’t welcome, however: businesses and brands. Thankfully this has all changed with the launch of Google Plus Pages. But how do they work and what makes them stand out from a regular Google Plus profile?

How To Create Your Google Plus Page

Creating a Google Plus page is simple. To start, visit the Google Plus business page at and select the type of page you want to create from the following categories:

* Local business or place,
* Product or brand,
* Company, institution or organization,
* Arts, entertainment or sports,
* Other.

Depending on the category you select, you’ll need to enter some more information such as your business phone number, website URL and the name of your page. Once you’ve done so you can upload a photo, edit your “about” page and start promoting your Google Plus Page.

The Difference Between Google Plus Pages And Personal Profiles

As you can see, the setup process is extremely simple, and Google Plus Pages come with the same clean layout as a personal Google Plus profile. You can use your page in the same way, too: post updates to your page, share links on your about page, upload photos and showcase your videos. Google Plus Pages also carry a visible +1 button to help their fans and customers show public support.

There are a few key differences, however. With a personal account, you can circle anyone you want, regardless of whether they circle you first. On Pages, however, you can only circle those who have already circled your account. As with personal profiles, only those who circle your Page will receive updates (even if you don’t circle them back).

There are a few ways to get people to circle your new Google Plus Page:

1) Share your page with all your followers by posting the link on your Google Plus personal profile (if you have one).

2) Add a Google Plus page badge to your website (grab the badge code from the Google Plus Pages dashboard after you’ve created your page).

3) Share the link with your customers in emails, Tweet it, share it on Facebook or on forums.

Is It Worth Bothering With Google Plus Pages?

Google Plus Pages are still extremely new and are lacking a lot of features you may be used to on sites like Facebook. Only time will tell whether these Pages can have the same impact that Facebook Pages have, and whether your niche market will be interested in joining Google Plus at all.

The good news, however, is that Pages are extremely quick to create. Because of the simple features, you can create a pleasing Page in five minutes. It’s up to you to decide whether the ongoing upkeep is worth it.