Recently, I attended the SMX West Expo’s Social Media Marketing Boot Camp. It was an all day event with classes on a whole range of social media marketing techniques. The main focus was on Facebook and Twitter, but we did talk some about LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, etc. I’d like to share a few main points with all of you. The classes were fashioned towards the businesses that are looking to take their social media presence to the next level. This boot camp was geared towards those who have started or are looking to start using paid advertising, those who want to translate social media conversation into leads, and those who are beginners and are looking to learn more than just the basics.

I’ll break it down for you by classes.

Social Media 101:

This class was definitely a fundamentals class about the importance of social media marketing today. The speakers emphasized the importance of “media” not “marketing”.

Content Marketing is the big thing right now –great writing wins the day
Use advertising to tell the story of a brand (ex: companies like Johnson and Johnson)
Take a media first approach
Start with your audience, find out what they have problems with/desire and give that to them
Reinvent yourself with a media first approach –think about your marketing as a creator of entertainment. (ex: you can do this through blog writing, making video ads, etc.)
Content is what you need to give people what they want in a way that builds your business

The biggest takeaway of this course was definitely: original content, original content, original content.

The Essential Guide to Social Media Etiquette:

10 ways to avoid the pitchforks:

Never mix business with pleasure. SEPARATE YOUR PERSONAL/BUSINESS ACCOUNTS: you don’t want any rogue tweets intended for another account. 
Never judge a book by its cover. Think before you reshare. Make sure you read what the link is/tweet actually says/etc.
Be kind, rewind. Check your scheduled posts when tragedy strikes. You don’t want to be the one insensitive company. Figure out what all of twitter is talking about; not just your personal agenda. Even if it doesn’t affect you. Gauge your customer base.
Read all about it. Know what’s happening in the world, before you tweet something insensitive. Ex: The NRA tweet after the Aurora, Colorado shooting said, “Good morning shooters!…” DO YOUR HOMEWORK. Click the hashtag and see what the heck they’re talking about.
Oops, I did it again. Don’t schedule a post while you’re obviously doing something else. I’m with “so and so doing such and such” but you’re at some event on the other side of the country.
Where’s the beef? What is the THING that your people care about? What do your people/your community care about?
You complete me. It’s ALL about them, not you. It’s about what the people following you care about. Push their agenda. 
Mr. Cellophane. Transparency. Be open and honest with your customers. Tell people what is happening, don’t leave them in the dark. If there is a security breach or site down, etc. help people through the situation, don’t leave them confused. Hold their hands through it.
Take it offline. If someone is unhappy, going off online is sometimes the best solution. Ask them to please follow you and DM their name and email and tell them you will get back to them to address the complaint. Take it offline and away from the eyes of others. Get more info.
Serenity Now. When all hell breaks loose, stay cool and calm. As soon as you know your site is down, let your customers know. If it’s a DOS attack, tell people. Everyone else is freaking out, you don’t need to.
Lastly, Don’t feed the trolls.

This class was great to have as a go-to reference sheet for handling your social media accounts. It’s good to have a standard list written down of the way you want to handle yourself on social media so that you can be consistent across the table.

I’ll be back soon with the second half of classes of the boot camp and what I learned. If you have any questions or comments on what I’ve shared so far, feel free to drop me a line below!