How to develop a strong social media linking strategy? – [Case Study]

Since the first Facebook post, Tweet and Instagram upload, social media has brought about something of a technological and social revolution. Social media is a part of most people’s everyday lives as we share information, pictures ad stories online with friends, family and wider audiences. Whilst social media might provide entertainment and help us keep in touch with people, for businesses it is a highly competitive environment where thousands of businesses of all sizes are competing for the attention of potential customers.

Social media is important because it builds trust in a brand, allows people to share reviews online and gives businesses an opportunity to develop more meaningful relationships with its customers. Because there is so much competition and so many businesses all wanting to talk to targeted groups of potential customers, effective use of social media is about more than just posting some interesting content.

Developing a linking strategy which helps to promote your brand is an essential part of any digital marketing activity, but every social media platform that you use needs a different approach which reflects and recognises the particular nuances of each platform. This activity also needs to consider the users for each platform and the reason that you are using that platform in the first place. It’s also important to have a method for monitoring impact and engagement with social media.

Done well a linking strategy will; help to optimise links, increase website traffic, improve brand awareness and enhance visibility on search engine results pages.

On Twitter

The recent pilot to increase Tweets from 140 to 280 characters has delivered an increase in the number of tweets but has seen no real difference in the length of tweets! Twitter works really well for linking content. Over 90% of all Twitter content is focussed around clickable links. To make the most of this opportunity, here are some tips:

  • Make sure tweets are brief and succinct
  • Make sure links are clear, and that your bio also features links to your website
  • Twitter offers a ‘pretty links’ PlugIn – make sure you’re using it to help make your tweets more noticeable
  • Use a tool such as Hootsuite to schedule Tweets – you might be busy during the daytime when your customers might be looking at Twitter, so use a solution that keeps your business engaged when it matters to your customers

On Facebook:

Facebook offers a number of promotional opportunities from creating a page through to PPC advertising targeted at specific demographics. Increasingly Facebook has repositioned itself as a platform for sharing between friends and has downplayed the commercial aspects of the site. This means that linking is even more important. So, when you’re putting content of Facebook always make sure:

  • Links are visible so people can see them – this is known to deliver increased click-throughs
  • People have limited attention spans, especially when scrolling through their updates, so keep descriptions brief
  • Images and videos are always going to capture people’s interest (and Facebook likes this sort of content as well)!
  • At least occasionally that you offer information and content for free
  • And don’t forget to promote competitions and freebies to get people through to your site

On Instagram

Although less focussed on linking content, Instagram is proven to help with business engagement – and business that use the platform well benefit form much higher engagement rates than Facebook! Remember that Instagram won’t allow you to put links on your posts, so there are other ways to maximise your use of Instagram:

  • Adding a pretty link to a biography is really helpful to encourage engagement
  • Adding a deep link to your website to take people into a specific part of the site is often more effective on Instagram than simply linking to your home page
  • As Instagram is an image led platform, high quality images are absolutely essential. Creating a photo library of high quality imagery will help maximise the impact of Instagram.

So remember, Facebook and Twitter are great for links, but effective linking on Instagram is likely to have a far more impactful result when it comes to customer engagement!

Case Study: How To Get More Facebook Shares On Your Blog Posts

Case Study: How To Get More Facebook Shares On Your Blog Posts

Facebook is the largest social media on the internet. And shares is the currency of the internet. According to Jeff Bullas, “47% of all Internet users are on Facebook.” (source)

With more facebook influence, you can build a loyal audience and increase engagement with your target audience.

Many bloggers and content marketers are creating more content with the hope of reaching their ideal audience on social media platforms – especially facebook.

They want to get more traffic for their blog to build an audience that’s going to buy their products or services. More Facebook shares would mean more traffic to your site, which can lead to more clients or customers to your services or products. And of course, all of these would increase how much money you get at the end of the day.

After all, that’s why you started your business online. But how do you get more  Facebook shares?

Lay a Solid Foundation: Research Your Audience

The first step to getting more social media shares is to know your audience well. You need to know which posts resonate with them most. What are they always looking for? What are they sharing with their friends on Facebook?

Find out the popular blog posts in your topic and dig into them. Find out the elements that made these posts successful.

Here are a few tools that could help you with this step:

i).   Ahrefs Content Explorer: This is an awesome tool to find the popular content in your topic. Just enter the topic you want and you’ll see the top posts related to your topic sorted by the number of shares.

You could also sort them by Facebook shares if you are targeting Facebook.


ii).   Buzzsumo: It works the same way as Ahrefs content explorer. Just enter the main keywords to find the most shared content:


Now you have a better understanding of what works best for your audience.

2.   Use a Number in Your Headline

List posts are always proven to go viral.

Henneke’s post, 37 Tips for Writing Emails that Get Opened, Read, and Clicked was the most popular post on Copyblogger.

Aside from the fact that this kind of post is useful, list posts always get more shares than average blog posts.

When Coschedule did a research with Okdork on the most used phrases in popular headlines, they found that list post was the first one.


According to a research done by Conductor, Buzzfeed, one of the fastest growing blogs on the internet, published more list posts than any other content type including how-to posts.


The reason why people love list posts is because it’s perfect for scanners, and most of internet readers scan through the posts, before reading it.

It also provides value for readers. Everyone would prefer reading an article titled 10 ways to get traffic than reading get traffic for your blog.

Even if they have the same content, but when you mention the number of ways, people already know what they are looking for in your posts.

That’s why whenever you can, try to use numbers in your headline. It’d motivate more people to share your posts on Facebook.

3).   Leverage visual assets

Being in the technology era, our brains respond better to visuals.

According to the next web, “the human brain processes and transmits visual information (infographics, videos, memes, charts, and more) 60,000 faster using plain text (such as blog posts, article etc).”


Posts which has at least one image get an average of 64.9 shares, compared to posts that has no images, which gets an average of 28 shares. A huge difference just because you don’t use relevant and professionally-looking images for your blog posts.


Infographics is by far the most shared content on the internet. A lot of blogs saw a huge boost in their traffic when they started to add infographics to their blogs.


One of these blogs which used infographics to get more visitors to its blog is KISSmetrics. In 2010, infographics helped Neil Patel generate over 2.5 million visitors and and build close to 42,000 quality links.

Neil Patel has also reported that when he started to use infographics on his blog, his brand popularity started to increase dramatically.

More people are emailing and telling him that they found his blog everywhere now that he’s consistent with infographics marketing.

When people embed Patel’s infographics on their blog, they’re also promoting the Quicksprout brand.

So it’s totally worth spending extra time creating more visuals to support your text and help you get more social shares on Facebook.

4).    Place Social Share Button at Vantage Location

In a recent post, Michael Stelzner said that where you place your social share buttons will definitely affect how many shares you’ll get.

When your share buttons are well placed, it’s easier for people to share your post. Instead of logging in and sharing from their facebook profile, they could do all this with just 2 clicks.

Most bloggers prefer to have their share buttons scrolling at the left side of their posts, but Upworthy uses a different approach – they placed their share buttons beneath the description of their posts. And they’ve over 7.6 million shares on their recent content.


Since readers can easily locate the wide buttons, it also acts as a reminder for them to click it more often.

Another important thing that makes social share buttons work is social proof. People are encouraged to share things that others are already sharing.

When people see that your post has already been shared by others, they’re encouraged to share it.


Actually, the opposite could also happen. When your posts don’t get any shares, it could affect your site negatively.

Social proof can make a big impact on people sharing your posts or not. The reality is that social proof plays a big role in the use of social sharing and can make a big impact on the success of your blog posts.

Here is an A/B test done by Visual Website Optimizer that proves this. When they removed the social sharing buttons from product pages of, they increased add to carts by 11.9%.


So where exactly exactly should you place your social sharing buttons?

The place that gets most shares is top left. It’s because of the way site users navigate the web page – from left to right.

A recent study conducted by Jacob Nielsen in 2006 on eye-tracking found that,

“online users often read Web pages in an F-shaped pattern.”


The cloudy-yellowish region is the most seen portion. That’s why the top and the left are among the best places to put social share buttons. Jerry Low from WHSR also has his share buttons at the top right side on single post pages.


More important, Garrett Moon of CoSchedule shares the six best places to position social media buttons on your blog. Here’s an excerpt from his post:


In all, there is really no right or wrong location to place your social buttons. You’ve to test this yourself and be sure. But remember that prominence is what truly matters.

In other words, make your buttons visible and your post valuable. You’ll definitely inspire more people to share your post.

5).   Don’t use many social share buttons

Another important thing to keep in mind to get more Facebook shares from your post is to offer less alternatives.

Giving people a lot of choices will make confused. Copyhackers, one of the leading CRO blogs allow 3 buttons (Twitter, Facebook and Google+) only:

Having examined several authority blogs, I discovered that giving your readers the opportunity to share on 3 social media networks (Twitter, facebook and Google+) will give you much traction.


Although some blogs use more than 3 share buttons, but you’ll notice that only 3 out of the 5 gets the most shares. Here’s an example from Copyblogger.


The truth is that having more than the required social share buttons on your site will disrupt your site load time. Decreasing the speed means less people are going to stay on your site and that could result in a noticeable decrease in SEO rankings.

That’s why Doug Antkowiak of Search Engine Journal says that adding many social media sharing buttons makes your site less social. Most of the authority blogs out there don’t have more than 4 share buttons.

6).   Encourage people to share

Become the Oliver Twist of bloggingask for more. Don’t just let people devour your awesome post, ask them to share it with others. They’ll like to reciprocate.

If you want more people to share your articles, ask them at the end of your posts to share it. Seriously, it will increase your social traffic.

Persuasive content needs a clearly stated call to action. Yes, your readers know how to share your content, but sometimes, they can forget or don’t just feel like doing it at a particular time. Remind them.

To prove it, tweets which has ‘please retweet get 4x more retweets’ than normal tweets. Imagine getting 4x your shares by just asking more people to share it.


So the next time you want more shares for your post, tell your readers to share your post.

7.   Evoke Emotions in Your Post

According to Jonah Berger, an expert in studying viral content and the author of the New York Times best-selling book Contagious: Why Things Catch On, there are 6 elements that make your post go viral.

One of these is emotions. Your content has to have an emotional effect on your readers to be able to get more shares. When you evoke emotions, people will respond better because they’re first and foremost ‘emotional beings.’


According to Jon Morrow, to be unforgettable, you need to treat your readers like walking deads, and wake them by charging your emotions and letting it flow into your writing.

Jon Morrow’s post On Dying, Mothers, and Fighting for Your Ideas is the most popular post on Copyblogger. Till date. One of the reasons why is because he intended to make people cry, and he did it really well.

Which is better, positive or negative emotions?

As stated by Jonah Berger, posts with positive emotions perform better than negative emotions.

Noah Kagan also proved this. He analyzed the top 10,000 shared posts on the internet and mapped each one to an emotion. Here is the breakdown of the emotions:


Notice that awe (25%), laughter (17%) and amusement (15%) did better than sadness and anger, which made up 7%.

But Jon Morrow proved the opposite?

Yes, his post on Copyblogger was the most shared post, but he created another post on Problogger titled How to Quit Your Job, Move to Paradise and Get Paid to Change the World.

The post attracted over 70,000 visits in the first 24 hours and it’s on track to getting nearly 1 million visits.

This post generated much more traction than the Copyblogger post. The main reason is because he wants to inspire people which is a positive emotion.

So when you write your next post, try to inject positive emotions into it. Trust me, your grandma will be excited when you show her your social analytics.

It’s Your Turn to Get More Facebook Shares

Now, you know the characteristics of posts that get more Facebook. What are you waiting for? Apply the above steps in your next post and see what happens. Just rinse and repeat and you’ll start to see huge results from Facebook.

You just need to take action. Nothing is going to change if you just read this article and don’t do anything.

Remember that the more facebook shares your post receives, the more traction you’ll gain online and your referral traffic will increase as well. As long as you’re producing high-quality content with a well-placed social share buttons, you shouldn’t worry about getting more socials signals.

As usual, we’d appreciate your feedback. How do you get more facebook shares on your blog posts?

Case Study: How to Create a Killer Explainer Video

Case Study: How to Create a Killer Explainer Video

How many times have you seen an awesome explainer video and said to yourself… “Wow, that was awesome! I should get an explainer video done for my site!” — probably quote a few times. Unfortunately, the process of creating an explainer video is quite complicated and can cost you a lot of money in the process. While there are many methods out there for creating these types of videos, it seems like the options are either too complicating, too time consuming to figure out, or just way too expensive!

Before we jump into “how” to create a killer explainer video, first we need to appreciate why explainer videos work so well and why they seem to be all over the place. In today’s world of fast paced content and social media, you only have a few seconds to grab someone’s attention and the best way to do this is with video — especially explainer videos. They tell a story, keep you engaged and get you to take action. You can see some of the top digital based products on ClickBank and how they are using video to convert their audience into customers through the use of video in this post.

If you already know the importance of an explainer video and have always one to create one of your own, but still sitting on the sidelines for any of the reasons mentioned above, this will be a great article for you.

My Journey to Create the Perfect Explainer Video

I recently wanted to get an explainer video created for my site at I had an idea in mind and looked at a few different options. I could have created the video myself with some of the whiteboard explainer video platforms out there, but many of them look cheesy, and when everyone is using the same concept, it’s even cheesier! The other option was to have a design team to create it for me, this was a good choice, but time and time again I was getting quotes in the several thousands range (which might be fine for huge agencies and mega businesses, but not something I wanted to shell out for a new project.)

Low and behold… one day while I was on Facebook, I saw an ad for video creation from a service called WizMotions. I looked through their site, watched their videos and then followed up with the team on how I could have a video created for my site. The quality was awesome, the creation experience was smooth and swift, and the price was very competitive as well — at just under $500.

Here’s the completed video for the site — then I will walk you through the process of how it was created.

How I Created My Explainer Video with WizMotions

First thing first, I got to talk with the WizMotions team and decide upon what type of video I would like to have created, and I also read up on the video creation process as well and how long it should take. Looking back at the project now, it was very seamless and tool little effort on my part besides coming up with the script idea and approving the ad copy and drawings.

Once placing my order with WizMotions, I was setup with a lead project manager (Carol) and another manager for my campaign progress as well (Christina). All of the interaction is done through Basecamp so everyone can interact and respond with each other in one area — which I thought was nice.

Video Creation and Concept

The first thing on my list was to fill out the creative brief, send over a copy of my site logo. The creative brief is all of your video ideas and details you would like the design team to know about. You can see a sample of this document below.


After completing the brief and having a better idea for myself of what I want my explainer to be about, I sent over the document and logo to the WizMotions team. During this process I also had to come up with a few lines for my script, what my video focus is about and the type of video I would like created. Once you send over the details for your write up / video idea, WizMotions will then send you a follow up script with suggested animation ideas as well. You can see a screenshot below of this as well.


For the video creation process, I had to choose the type of video and if it would be in black and white, or in color. You can see a portfolio of different design concepts from WizMotions in their portfolio or through the screenshot below. The different type of videos available are Whiteboard Videos, 2D Animation, Kinetic Typography or a mix of each.


In addition to choosing the video type, you also get to choose the character styles as well, which broken down into one of the follow.


I went with the “Cartoon Style” for my video shown at the top of the page.

Cartoon Style for Explainer Videos

While going through the design process, WizMotions would send me draft mock ups of how the video was going to look. These were basically still shots of my video for approval. During this process I also requested they used a picture of my dog Foxy for their inspiration for the dog in the video. They happily obliged.


You can see Foxy throughout the video above, and in the screenshot below.


With the video design, concept, art work and detailed brief all completed, the next step of the process was to work on the actual script, voice and music for the video.

Video Script, Audio and Design Process

After working with the WizMotions teams and the data I pulled together for my creative brief, a 60 second script was drafted for my video.

It’s important to focus a lot of effort on the wording of your script to make sure you get your message across within the specified time for your video. Obviously my ending script was the one heard through the video at the top of the page… however that wasn’t the whole decision process. I also had to decide if I wanted to be the voice for the video, or if I should have someone from the WizMotions team bring my audio to life.

Even though I do my own podcasting and audio work for my own sites, I wanted to bring a fresh and new voice to this site. No matter what type of voice talent you are looking for, WizMotions has an awesome page full of different voice artists and examples for you to listen to right from their site. For my video I went with Male Voice #10 (WM-M10).


For my video I went with Male Voice #10 (WM-M10), and it was perfect in the first file received.

The last step in the process was for the WizMotions team to pull everything together, created the video, animated and color it, then send it on over!

The whole process was quick, easy and painless. After receiving my video (through Dropbox), the WizMotions team sent over a few questions about their service and the design process. Here are those questions along with my responses.

What was your biggest challenge/fear before hiring wizMotions?
– Making sure the quality of work and flow process was up to par — and it was!

What, specifically, was your favorite part of your video production experience, and why?
– The preview of the cartoon work was the most exciting. It gave a real glimpse of what to expect for the final outcome.

If you were to recommend us to your best friend, what would you say?
– If you want to get a professional video created, while working with a great team that understands how to fit your needs, wizmotions is a great option.

With all of that said… it was great to work with WizMotions and I love the turn out of the video.

Cost to Create a Custom Explainer Video

The final cost of my explainer video was about $500. I went with the wizDoodle video option, which included unlimited storyboard revisions, original artwork and 100% hand drawn and also added a voice over, which is an additional $99 per minute. The wizMotional package is available for anyone interested in Typography videos or the larger wizToon 2D package is for animation and cartoon videos in full color.


Save 10% WizMotions Coupon

If you would like to create an explainer video of your own, I highly recommend working with the team over at WizMotions. You will get to walk through the same simple and detailed process I did to create your video, and you also won’t have to break the bank in the process. As mentioned earlier, the WizMotions team will set you up with a Basecamp account to work directly with you to create the best video possible.

While talking with WizMotions, I was also able to negotiate a nice 10% discount for all of my blog readers — which can add up to some decent savings when creating your own custom explainer video. Click here to get started, and be sure to use coupon code ZACFANS.