[VIDEO] #socialmediaspringclean episode 3: Facebook Friends

Did you know you could filter your Facebook friends so they only see certain posts from you, and also so that you only see posts from them?

In this video (8:45) I demonstrate how you can implement this more advanced Facebook skill to declutter your newsfeed and make browsing Facebook more fun and less time consuming.

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[VIDEO] #socialmediaspringclean episode 2: Facebook Pages

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[VIDEO] #socialmediaspringclean episode 1: Facebook Groups

Now that spring has officially sprung, I’m feeling the urge to declutter.

This applies to my home and office, for sure. But it also applies to my social media accounts.

Could your Facebook newsfeed use some decluttering? Mine sure could, and I’m a pro! So yesterday I unsubscribed from 26 FB groups. Watch the video below (2:45) and find out how you, too, can feel this liberated.

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How to Get Your Creativity Flowing Again by Doing Things You’ve Never Done Before

I’m sitting here doing the absolute opposite of everything I would normally do.

I’m working from home. (I have office space.)

Not only that, I’m working from the couch and I’m wearing pyjamas. (I have a staunch business-casual dress code for when I’m working, and when I did run my business from home, I had a dedicated room from whence to run it.)

I just finished broadcasting a pep talk to 27 of my client’s clients, in my role as her Community Wrangler, during which I declared today “Opposite Day.” Dressed in the aforementioned pyjamas and also wearing a tiara because, well, why not?

No, I haven’t lost my mind.

I’ve lost my creativity.

As someone who is usually in near-constant ideation mode, to lose my creativity feels a little like my soul is dying. I’ve experienced that soul-dying feeling twice before, and both times they resulted in nervous breakdowns that pulled the rug out from under me. I’m both blessed and relieved to now be able to recognize when I’m experiencing this feeling and, more importantly, how to turn the boat around when I’m hurtling towards the darkness that is depression.

I noticed that my creativity was beginning to die late last year, and so I declared that my personal theme for 2017 would be CREATIVITY & INNOVATION.

Tall order for someone who felt like she couldn’t creatively innovate her way out of a paper bag.

So the first thing I had to do was define what those words meant for me. It all boils down to these 2 things:

  1. Do everything differently.
  2. Go back to basics.

Neither of those things sound particularly creative nor innovative to me, but I’m also harshly critical of myself at the best of times, so I’ll let that slide for now.

Doing things differently.

While I may have declared today “Opposite Day” to my client’s clients, I’ve actually declared 2017 as “Opposite Year” to myself and my staff, and to some extent, my clients.

Whenever we plan something, I ask the question, Is this something we would have done in 2016?

If the answer is “yes,” (and there’s nothing wrong with that, per se) I issue the following challenge:

How can we do it differently?

Sometimes, we can’t. (And there’s nothing wrong with that, either.)

But most of the time, we can!!

It’s brought forth some amazing results – chiefly because we’re doing things no one expects (or what’s known as a pattern interrupt):

  • One of my clients is offering a free webinar every 6 weeks or so. There’s not really anything creative or innovative about that, except it’s broadcast over Facebook Live and you don’t have to trade your email address in order to watch it! Now THAT’S refreshing.
  • If you and I are connected personally on Facebook, you’re likely familiar with the #cherylandkatyshow, where my wife and I demonstrate that same-sex marriages are just like heterosexual marriages (only gayer). Up until recently, the “episodes” had been delivered strictly as text-only Facebook status updates, but we’re now including images in select posts and this past weekend we experimented with the first video episode.
  • In 2016, I launched my first ever group program, Killer Social Media LIVE!. It was fantastic, and I blocked off time in my calendar to deliver it 4 more times in 2017. But upon further reflection, I realised it took me away from what I really love to do, which is working one-on-one with entrepreneurs. For the foreseeable future, Killer Social Media LIVE! is on the backburner so I can do what I enjoy most of all.

And so I issue the same question and challenge to you as you work on your business this year: Is this something you would have done in 2016? And if so, how can you do it differently?

Going back to basics.

My business coach reminds me regularly that there are periods of expansion and contraction in business. Any business.

One of the areas where I’m “contracting” in my business right now is in my service offerings; this is the area in which I’m choosing to go back to basics this quarter.

I mentioned above that I’ve nixed my group program for the time being. It will be back, but it’s not my focus right now.

Instead, I’m going back to what I love: working one-on-one.

This means there’s currently only 2 ways to work with me:

  1. A VIP social media strategy session, where we dive deep into your business goals, how social media can support them, which platforms you’ll target and with what content, and how to measure and analyse your results for continuous improvement. You leave with a documented strategy that you and/or your existing team can implement right away.
  2. A full-service management package that includes a VIP social media strategy session, where my team and I create, execute and manage your entire social media strategy, so you can stop tearing your hair out and focus on what you do best for your clients.

I must insist on having a strategy session when you wish to work with me long-term, otherwise we’ll both be miserable. Without a proper strategy in place, our marketing efforts will be fractured and will ultimately fall flat. I want to create real, meaningful results for you, and I simply cannot do that if we haven’t created that strategy together first!

My intention for sharing all this with you is to get you thinking about how you can get some fresh perspective in your business.

What can you do differently this year? Where you can you take a step back to see the bigger picture before taking a giant leap forward?

Feel free to share in the comments!

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4 Marketing Lessons Learned from #bathtubsofbunz

I’d like to introduce you to my new friend, Ken Ferguson.

I’ve actually known of Ken for several years, as he’s a close friend of my BFF’s little sister, but I’ve never had the opportunity to meet or talk to him until now.

Unlike most people I follow on social media, Ken doesn’t run a business. I doubt he ever will. But he recently started a movement on Facebook and Instagram that I find incredibly beautiful to behold, and I think it’s important that you, as a business owner, know not only what Ken’s doing, but why he’s doing it and why it works.

Following the 2016 US election, along with everything else happening in the world, Ken was tired of all the negativity he was seeing on social media. I can’t say I blame him – we can probably all agree that social media has been emotionally exhausting for the past several months.

So Ken decided he wanted to do something that would make him and others happy, laugh, and just generally bring the kid out in all of us. He was particularly inspired by Humans of New York, its impact on people and its daily moral messages.

Does this resonate somewhere deep inside you? It doesn’t surprise me. You likely launched your business because you wanted to make a positive impact in the lives of others.

And like you, when you were first exploring your business ideas, Ken explored his own ideas about what he could do to break the constant negativity surrounding him.

Ken tells me he has something of a bucket list of all his crazy ideas that he wants to do, so this movement he’s created is just one of many things we may see from him in the future.

So just what is this movement he’s created, you ask?

Oh, I can’t wait to share it with you!

Ken takes baths in other people’s houses.

I kid you not.

Since returning to Canada a few years ago after teaching English in Japan, Ken has only ever had apartments with shower stalls, no bathtubs, and he quite frankly missed taking baths.

What started as a lark to entertain his friends, Ken set a goal of taking a bath at a different person’s house every day for the month of January 2017. He used the website Bunz to help find people to host his daily bath, and called the “campaign” #bathtubsofbunz. (Bunz is an online community where people trade goods and services)

The thing that has me fascinated about Ken’s goal is how passionate other people became about his mission!

By sharing photos and stories of each bath host on Facebook and Instagram, excitement and curiosity grew about what Ken was doing. He received over 100 requests to host his bath time in the city of Toronto, and media coverage all over the world, including Canada, the US, Germany, Sweden, and the Ukraine.

Ken’s initial goal of giving people something to laugh about has been met; what he didn’t expect was how #bathtubsofbunz changed him. The people who opened their homes to Ken shared their personal stories with him, which has been incredibly humbling for him.

One such host, who really stands out for Ken, is a lady named Mariana. Ken was the first guest in her home since she finished chemo treatments. Another is lady with such severe social anxiety, she rarely leaves her house.

This is powerful stuff, my friends. Social media is powerful.

So why do I want you to know about Ken and his wacky #bathtubsofbunz movement?

Simple, really. As entrepreneurs, there are a few things we can learn about from what Ken is doing and why it’s working:

1. It’s all about the stories…

Ken discovered quite quickly the reason his mission caught on is because people loved hearing the stories about the people he was meeting.

2. …which means it has nothing to do with you.

From the get-go, Ken’s intentions were to make other people happy. Yes, he was the catalyst, and he’s a weird and wonderful guy, but at the end of the day, he tells the stories of the people he meets.

3. The reward is greater than the risk.

Yes, Ken took precautions meeting strangers off the internet. But that’s not the risk I’m referring to… and nor would I suggest you start doing something like what Ken did. Chiefly because it’s Ken’s idea!

The risk was that Ken chose to be vulnerable by taking an action that could have backfired. Instead, he was rewarded by creating a community of people who are entertained and moved by what he does.

Where could you step outside of your comfort zone to bring people together in your own community?

4. There are hidden opportunities everywhere.

Ken only intended for this to last a month. Instead, it took on a life of its own, and Ken chose to run with it.

He has now received requests to take #bathtubsofbunz global, including the possibility of creating a documentary, but because this is not a money-making venture for him, he needs some help getting the next phase of #bathtubsofbunz off the ground.

A GoFundMe has been created to help offset some of the costs, so if Ken’s movement has inspired you in some way or has made you laugh, I encourage you to check out what Ken has to say about it in his own words, and perhaps make a small contribution to his efforts.

You can also check out Ken on Facebook and Instagram.

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[VIDEO] [ASK KATY] How do I turn followers on Facebook into paying clients?

I recently asked some of my colleagues and Facebook followers the following questions:

  • What do you want to know about social media and how to use it to grow or market your business?
  • What tools, tips, or tricks would make your life easier?

I got some great responses, so today I’m answering the first question, which comes from Diane Y.:

How do I turn followers on Facebook into paying clients?

love this question as it’s about one of my favourite topics. Watch the video below for my answer:

I also wrote a more in-depth blog about this, so be sure to check that out.

Still have questions? Leave me a comment or better yet – let’s chat!

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How to come up with titles and content for your blog posts

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10 Types of Social Media Platform – Updated for 2017

Last April, I wrote a blog about the different types of social media platforms that are out there, and where some of your favourite sites fall under those categories.

It’s one of the most popular blogs I’ve ever written, accounting for over 200 hits to my website every day, and shows up on the first page of Google when you search for “types of social media.”

But since I first wrote this article, some of the platforms I mentioned have gone defunct and some newer ones have popped up that deserve mentioning. So, here goes the updated version!

When we think of the term “social media platform” our minds automatically go to something like Facebook or Twitter, the more mainstream sites. But did you know there are literally hundreds of different platforms out there? Some of them are more appropriate for business than others. And chances are, whether for personal or business, you will only ever use a fraction of those platforms and sites! This list on Wikipedia is by no means exhaustive, but most of them of them can be categorized as one of ten “types” of social media platform. You’ll also find that some can also fall into more than one category.

Social Networking

Social Networking platforms allow users to connect with other people who have similar interests, likes, and experiences. These types of platforms allow you to share and consume information across your network and to join, create, and participate in
groups.

FacebookFB Logo

Facebook obviously goes without saying. As of December 31, 2016, it has 1.23 billion active daily users, 1.15 billion of whom access the platform from a mobile device. Facebook’s presence simply can’t be ignored, as much as we might want to at times!

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is designed specifically for the business community. The goal of the site (and the spirit behind it) is to allow users to create an online network of people they know and trust professionally.

Google+

Google+ gets a bad rap sometimes, which is unfortunate because it has some pretty great features that other social media platforms simply haven’t caught up with (although they’re trying pretty hard). When it first opened, there was an influx of the techy-types and so Google+ got a reputation for being “only for tech nerds.” While at first this may have been true, today the userbase is as varied as Facebook’s or Twitter’s. This article on Android Central gives a nice overview of the platform.

Video Sharing

Video is far and away more engaging than any other type of social media content, and there are platforms dedicated to allowing its users to upload videos that can be shared specifically to that platform as well as all across the internet.

YouTube

As with Facebook under the Social Networking category, it’s safe to say YouTube owns this space. It has 1.3 billion users who watch almost 5 billion videos per day. They watch 900 million hours of video every single month. Another interesting fact: YouTube frequently surpasses Google as the number one search engine!

VimeoVimeo logo

Vimeo was the first video sharing platform to support HD video, and will also be rolling out support for 4K video in 2017. Vimeo’s community tends to be made up of video professionals and indie filmmakers.

Live-Streaming

Piggy-backing on video sharing is live-streaming: platforms provide its users to broadcast and watch live video from their computers and smartphones.

PeriscopePeriscope logo

Owned by Twitter, Periscope officially launched in March 2015. It’s still overwhelming to a lot of people (me included), but it’s a lot of fun, too. Once you have ended your broadcast, other users can watch a replay and leave feedback for up to 24 hours. After that, the video is removed from the platform. You do have the option to save your broadcast to your device, and you can then upload it to your video-sharing platform of choice.

Microblogging

Microblogging platforms allow users to share content and information in short, little blurbs. Generally, you’re limited to a small amount of characters. There are several Twitter-like micro-blogging sites out there, but they tend to be most popular in Asia so I won’t go into detail about them.

Twittertwitter logo

Twitter is one of the more well-known microblogging platforms out there and is famous for its 140-character limit for each post (tweet). It moves incredibly quickly – one of the benefits to this is that, as a user, you can post far more frequently on Twitter than you can on other social media sites without appearing “spammy.”

Tumblr

The userbase for Tumblr is quite young. It also has the reputation for having a significant amount of adult or NSFW (not safe for work) content, and has found itself mired in several other controversies. Similar to Twitter, it has a “reblog” feature that’s akin to the retweet, allowing you to easily share other people’s content – and others to share yours.

Blogging

I am a strong proponent of blogging and have been doing it in one form or another since I was about 16 years old. I make strong efforts to post a new blog weekly.

Blogs are written content or video content (sometimes referred to as vlogging) that others can read, view, comment and share. There are numerous platforms out there, so here are a few:

WordPress

By far one of the most recognizable blogging platforms on the Internet. WordPress is a very powerful platform, completely customizable, and you can easily build your entire website on it (I have).

Bloggerblogger-logo

This is Google’s answer to providing a blogging platform. If you’re comfortable with other Google apps, products, and services, you should have no problem setting up and navigating Blogger.

LiveJournal

I have to give a shoutout to LiveJournal, simply because it’s where I started my very first blog in 1999! It has changed a lot since then and is now owned by a Russian company, so many of the users there are now based in Russia or are Russian expatriates.

Social News

This type of platform goes over some people’s heads. And to be fair, social networking platforms like Facebook can be used to achieve some of the same results. Essentially, this type of platform is used to share news or outside articles with a community or network. These platforms then allow users to vote on or rate the content, so that the highest rated (most popular) content is the easiest to see and find on the site.

digg logoDigg

Digg is an amazing content repository of what’s new, exciting, and about-to-be-viral on the Internet. Between its own algorithm and its editorial team, it curates content in a variety of categories. Users can then vote on the different content by “digging” it. I love this site – it’s often where I go when I’m in need of inspiration or information.

Reddit

You may have heard of Reddit before. You may think it is the scourge of the Internet. I wouldn’t necessarily disagree with you. It has a reputation for being full of trolls. But many things that go viral online do so thanks to Reddit, and many of the Internet’s most hilarious memes begin their life on Reddit, so it’s not all bad. Personally, I only use it for its entertainment value and not for business.

Photo Sharing

After video, images are the most engaging content available on the web.

Instagraminstagram logo

Owned by Facebook, Instagram is one of the most used social media platforms in the world. Although you can view and comment on photos from a computer, in order to fully enjoy Instagram you must access it from the Instagram app on your smartphone or tablet. To get the most out of the platform, you need to be comfortable with hashtags – otherwise you simply won’t achieve any reach beyond your immediate network.

Flickr

Flickr is popular with photographers. It’s also a great resource for royalty-free images, as long as the owner has authorized their image for commercial use. Make sure you’re looking at the license before using someone else’s photos!

Snapchat

I haggle with where to place Snapchat, but ultimately I think it makes the most sense to categorize it as an image-sharing platform. Although it does share a lot of characteristics with a messenger app, it’s primarily image-based. If you’re building a brand around yourself and your target audience skews younger (teens and early/mid-20s), then Snapchat is worth considering.

Content Curation

A big part of maintaining a killer social media presence is regularly curating relevant, high-quality content from other sources in order to share it with your audience. Google is obviously handy for this, but there are entire social media platforms dedicated to curating content – in many cases, a lot of the work is already done for you!

Paper.li

I use Paper.li tpaper.li logoo help me find content to share on Twitter and also to grow my Twitter followers. Using a pre-set search term (Social Media), Paper.li publishes a daily “paper” to my Twitter account that summarizes some of the most popular content related to my search term. Additionally, it tags the Twitter profiles of some of the featured writers. I love it!

Pinterest

Pinterest is the ultimate visual content creation tool. It’s what I used to plan my wedding (it’s what a lot of people use to plan their weddings, TBH). It’s where I keep up with the latest fashion trends. I even have a secret board that I share with my hairstylist.

Wikis

Wikis are collaborative platforms where users contribute articles to create sites full of vast information.

Wikipedia

Obviously, this one goes without saying. It’s not without its flaws, because like any other wiki, Wikipedia is maintained by its own users.

Wikia

wikia logoI can get lost in this one, because there’s just so much. Wikia is a free wiki hosting service, where anyone can start their own wiki. The most popular use of Wikia is to create wikis for TV shows, movies, video games, and other entertainment. I especially find myself spending a lot of time in the Grey’s Anatomy wiki, which has 6.7k pages and counting!

Messengers

I’m adding Messenger apps to this update. Social media is becoming more and more mobile, and when companies like Facebook are trying to figure out how to monetize their internal messengers, it’s time to pay attention. I truly believe that after live video, messenger apps (whether standalone like the ones below, or built-in to other platforms like Facebook or Instagram) are the future of social media marketing.

I haven’t done any “marketing” over messengers myself, beyond responding to inquiries. But there are some out there that have potential and I might consider marketing on them down the road.

Here are a couple that I use regularly and suggest you check out:

WhatsAppwhats app logo

WhatsApp allows you to talk to your friends and family for free, no matter where they are in the world. It works by using your cell phone’s internet connection instead of your voice calling minutes. WhatsApp can be used for voice calls, video calls, sending pictures, and instant messaging.

Marco Polo

I’ll be honest, I downloaded this app because a friend made me. I had no intentions of using it. But I got hooked. Marco Polo calls itself a “video walkie-talkie” and is essentially an app that allows you to send video messages back and forth between contacts. I see a lot of potential for this one, especially if you’re marketing to a younger crowd and are building a brand around a product or around yourself. Download it here on iTunes or here on Google Play.

Clearly, there are more social media platforms than you’ll ever need for your business. Some are more appropriate than others – it will all depend on who your target market is and what it is that you offer. Not sure if you’re taking advantage of the right social media platforms for your business? I’d love to help you figure it out. Schedule your complimentary Social Media Breakthrough Session with me here.

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[VIDEO] Lipgloss & Politics: A New Take on the 80/20 Content Rule

Last week I caught the ‘flu for the first time in my adult life. I sincerely hope I never have it again!

Being laid up in bed or on the couch for the last several days gave me an opportunity to spend way more time on Facebook for personal browsing than I usually would (these days, the bulk of my time spent on FB is for my clients, not for me!).

One post in particular, from one of my Facebook friends, really caught my intention. It said:

“Why is my Facebook feed full of lipgloss and politics?!”

And I thought to myself, THANK YOU FOR SAYING THAT OUT LOUD.

Now, I’m not knocking independent distributors or representatives of direct sales or network marketing businesses. Nor am I knocking people’s rights to free speech and expression.

What I am saying is, when hundreds or thousands of people are marketing the same product as you, in exactly the same way, it’s time to get creative. To differentiate yourself.

Because let’s be honest right now, if I’m looking for a long-lasting lipgloss, or a protein shake, or legal services, I could easily close my eyes, scroll down my FB friends list for a few seconds, open my eyes and land on a random person who has partnered with a company that offers the particular product I’m looking for.

Again, not knocking the direct selling or network marketing industries. My very first business, when I was 18 years old, was with a direct sales company in the beauty industry.

I’m merely saying there’s more than one way to market yourself as the go-to person in your industry – whether or not you’re in network marketing.

So earlier this week, I took to FB Live once again, to talk about a new take on the 80/20 Content Rule. I talk a lot about how only 20% of your total posts should be promotional (or what I call a commercial for your business). In this video, I talk about the importance of paying attention to what makes up 80% of your newsfeed and aiming to be the person who provides the 20% of content that stands out to your friends and followers.

Watch the video (2:57) below:

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[VIDEO] How Current Events Impact Your Social Media Marketing

In light of recent (and ongoing) events, I took to Facebook Live earlier this week, to share some social media best practices in times such as these.

As business owners who market on social media, we have a certain responsibility to our clients, followers, families, friends, and communities to allow the space for conversation and the free flow of real information during times of political unrest.

Watch the video (5:57) to learn how current events impact your social media marketing, and my best practices for proper social media management during times such as these:

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