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Ian Farrar: Boss it on Social Media

Boss it on Social Media

Ian Farrar joins me today with some great insights on social media.

Some highlights include:

  • Don’t just sell
  • 3 X 30 minute sessions
  • Meaningful content
  • Boss one platform
  • The slow burn
  • a hack for algorithms
  • AND Ian’t top 5 tips

 I would say– well, actually let me give you Quick Five Top Tips. Be consistent, okay. What I see quite often now is inconsistency. So, people will just post whenever they feel like it. So, have a social media strategy. Have some goals in place, sort of mentioned that. Three times 30 minutes. Ten minutes for comments. There’s your KPIs. There’s your targets. So, use them. Respond to comments. There’s nothing worse than commenting on something and not getting a response. Especially if you’re a brand and especially if you’re a business.  Don’t get too hung up on vanity metrics. Okay. So, it doesn’t matter how many followers you’ve got. If it’s quality over quantity that’s great. If people are engaging with you, why do you need thousands of followers? Your audience is fine. The last one, don’t be too salesy. We’ve just mentioned don’t broadcast all the time. Don’t come across as salesy. Try and engage with your followers.

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ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Hey welcome to The Podcasters Life. This is Alexander your Podcaster's Coach, and I am joined by the incredible, the wonderful Mr. Farrar; Ian Farrar. Host of the Industry Angel, Business Podcast. Ian how you doing?
IAN FARRAR: Well, I'm very good but I've got something to live up to after that introduction. Thank you very much Alexander. Wow.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Thank you. Well, I think very highly of you, and we've talked on numerous times. You've contribute to the book. You're an awesome fellow. So, I'm very happy to throw out the praise.
IAN FARRAR:   Ah. The book man. The book which dropped through my letter box this morning, wowerz.  Love it.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Awesome and Canada Post well done.  I mailed it on Thursday and it's Monday, and it went from [Whitby?] Ontario to the U.K. Amazing.
IAN FARRAR:  That is very scary and you didn't send it by huge, fast currier, just a normal post, yeah?
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Just normal Post. Put it in a post and in an envelope. How is the condition of the book by the way?
IAN FARRAR: It's absolutely fine. It looks amazing, and it's really good.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Right on. So, it's wonderful to talk to you again. Thanks again for coming on the program. We are in the green room having a little bit of discussion and social media came up. So, why not talk about social media or your business and your podcast. You seem to get some really fantastic engagement. Can you maybe share or how do you think we should start this off?
IAN FARRAR: Yeah. No. I totally agree. I'm a big fan of engagement, Alexander. Okay, interaction. So, you've probably seen the Facebook algorithm has changed this last a month. I saw, Zucks came out and said he's going to make some big changes, and it's all down to, you want people to interact with each other. So, a Facebook group is going to be quite good, and real increasing for business I would imagine, but engagement and interactions whereas of-- I coach this and what I say to my clients is-- I look at their social media posts and it's just a broadcasting all the time, and then they wonder why no one's engaging with them. They haven't struck an emotional chord. They haven't tried to spark some engagement. They're not trying to have a conversation. It's just buy my stuff, yeah.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Well, I confess I do that with the podcast. I have a love and hate relationship with social media and Facebook in particular. So, I just pretty much will do that. That's my strategy too and it doesn't really-- it's not really fruitful but it almost feels like, "Oh well. I'm a living human being I should be posting on Facebook and Twitter" sort of thing. What do you suggest in terms of-- If you if you're going to engage with people, what kind of time commitment did you advise your clients to be spending on these things?
IAN FARRAR: What I say is, you got to put three sessions of 30 minutes in every day. So, in the morning. Maybe at lunchtime, and then in the evening. Just commit to 30 minutes. What we see across those 30 minutes is-- try and add 10 meaningful comments across that day. So, split down. Do three or four each time. What's meaningful comments are? if you know-- if you are on LinkedIn Alexander, and I've done a post about how awesome your book is, that dropped through my front door this morning. What I'm expecting is people to not just say, "Oh. Great" or "Well done". I want it to spark a conversation on what it means to them? So, when I say it my clients leave 10 meaningful comments. Make sure they're meaningful, read the content and see how it's changed them? What it's made them think about. What their experience is on the particular topic. So, not just, "Well done" or "Great" or "Thanks, mate". Actual meaningful comments and then you can a spark some engagement.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  So, 30 minutes-- so it's realistic? I mean, when you're when you're doing it for 30 minutes at a time, do you have a strategy or are you just adding meaningful comments to whatever you see, or are you mindful about where exactly you're going?
IAN FARRAR: Yeah. it's a really good question. So, I'm a big fan of LinkedIn and Twitter, and a little bit of Facebook as well, but what I say to clients pick a platform and boss it. There's way too many platforms out there now. Don't try and be an everyone. So, don't try to be on Instagram, Pinterest, and snapchat., but maybe those are your chosen methods if your audience is there. So, you got to try and work out who your custom Avatar is. Who you're buying persona. Who your audience is.  So, my audience Alexander you know I'm a business coach, and I deal a lot with small and medium enterprises. My ideal client sits on LinkedIn. So, that's where I'm going to spend the most of my time, and similarly with Twitter as well. So, there's no point me being on Snapchat because my clients aren't there, but they all there on LinkedIn. So, to answer your question, I would spend those 30 minutes on LinkedIn looking for meaningful comments. Reading some of the content and trying to engage with them, and it's a slow burn. You probably hear Gary Vie talking about the jab, jab, jab, right hook. So, rather than go straight in for that right hook and try to sell them stuff, think about the job, and as you put meaningful comments on their content. After a few months of you commenting on their content, they're going to be saying, "Who is this guy" or you've got bit of relationship from them. Then you go in for the ask. Don't steam straight in. You don't get married on the first date, Alexander, do you?
ALEXANDER LAURIN: Well, sometimes you do, but it never really works out. So, tell me about this Facebook algorithm. I don't really understand very much about it. When I hear algorithm, my brain goes somewhere else. It goes to the tropical island somewhere. I know that it's upset a lot of people, and to me when I think about-- to me, it's like a control thing. I can't control Facebook. So, I always ask myself, "why do I even bother caring that much. I have no control over it. I can control my website but--" I lost my question there. What was my question?
IAN FARRAR: You were talking about algorithms. So, every platform has their own algorithms and if we knew them all we'd be millionaires. I do agree that they should be changing because what the likes of Zuckerberg want to do is, make a platform the best to can be for the users. So, they’ll throttle back a lot of cut videos now. They'll throttle back some of the video of advertisement that aren't suitable for you. What he wants to do is put prime information in front of your eyes when you're on, so you stay on. In terms of algorithms, a lot of these platforms now-- the whole goal is to stop you leaving. So, when I talk to clients, what I'll say is, don't put any external URL in your post, because that's going to take you out of the platform, and then these platforms will throttle that back. That you see was a bad thing. So, they won't put that post in front of many eyes. Just be mindful of the algorithms are there for a reason, and you just got to try and hack them.
ALEXANDER LAURIN: Yeah. So, when you're actually-- so Facebook now-- so if you're going to put an external URL, it's Facebook is kind of saying, "No. No. No" this isn't working for us very well, and then it will decrease the odds of you getting found or people finding your posts.
IAN FARRAR: Yeah. I would definitely say that, and also LinkedIn as well. So, you've probably seen yourself, Alexander. Have you ever read a post and it's have links in comments?
IAN FARRAR: Yeah. That's why. So, rather than put the link in the body of the post, that actually said check the comments, and then the first comment, that you linked to your website, your blog, your podcast, whatever it will be. The post will get throttle backed by the algorithm because it's know it's an external link that will take you out of the platform. See. So you kind of hack it that way and just do those little tricks.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Wonderful. Awesome.
IAN FARRAR: I've played a lot with images as well actually. So, a lot of people say, "add images for more engagement, I don't know about your listeners, but I've found when I've been playing with this, that LinkedIn-- the best thing to do with LinkedIn is text only. I'd love to hear from anybody else who or any anybody else that's tested this. Twitter works well with images. I think that's great, but with LinkedIn I've always found, if you just do a text post only, it seemed to get much more reach than with an image.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Aww. Interesting. I created my first video for LinkedIn late last week, and I had 149 nine views for my video, and I was actually really thrilled, at 149. So, like when do you use video, because I remember I saw a video when you're in India recently. You posted a video. Do you use video often for your posts?
IAN FARRAR: Yeah. It's a really good point. I think we're all I think we're all mindful now that video is becoming increasingly more important when it comes to social media, and I think it's because of the fact that video has now become native in a lot of these apps. So, LinkedIn now-- hopefully everybody's had that rolled out. Some people had early tested it Some people hopefully have got it now. Where it's actually got native video inside the platform. So, when you said you had a lot of views there, that's because LinkedIn is privatizing video now in the algorithm. So, I get a lot of views. I think it works really well. What I would suggest is, put captions on your video, because there isn't a -- I can't the start now of how many videos are watched without sound. So, just trying to put some captions on because people in office or you sitting at home on an evening with your phone. You can easily read the subtitles, but not listen. So, yeah. A lot of these now have got native video and so LinkedIn has. Twitter has obviously. Facebook and it will be interesting to see where the LinkedIn actually makes the jump to go live within LinkedIn. I think that will be very interesting. So, I mean, 87 percent of online marketer has use video-- I’ve just got some slides in front of me that I use in my social course that I run. 87 percent of online marketers use video contents and to see how popular it has become now. The only thing that kind of-- is getting me at the moment is, people hearing now and think, "Right. Okay. We need to do some video" and the sitting in the car with headphones on top and the gobbly gook. So, if you are going to press the button, make sure the content is good.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Yes. Absolutely. I like everything about social media. I'm trying with video also because I have the face for podcasting. I'm like, "When people see me they might not watch. Scroll. Scroll. Next" okay.
IAN FARRAR: But you know what it is though? I mean, I'll touch upon the point. I had a client last week who was doing a YouTube video. He’s an IT guy, and he was doing a walkthrough and that's what he come by, that he couldn't get over how he looked, and I just said like, "Look you're creating this massive thing in your head. No one is bothered. No one's bothered how you look, or the overweight, or whatever it is. If the content is good, nobody is bothered. Not going to say he or she should not be on video. You're just putting it all in your own mind. So, just press the button and forget about them.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Very good. Alright. Well Ian, do you have a final piece of advice on social media for your business or your podcast? What's the number one thing people should know and do?
IAN FARRAR: I would say-- well, actually let me give you Quick Five Top Tips. Be consistent, okay. What I see quite often now is inconsistency. So, people will just post whenever they feel like it. So, have a social media strategy. Have some goals in place, sort of mentioned that. Three times there of 30 minutes. Ten minutes for comments. There's your KPIs. There's your targets. So, use them. Respond to comments. There's nothing worse than commenting on something and not getting a response. Especially if you're a brand and especially if you're a business.  Don't get too hung up on vanity metrics. Okay. So, it doesn't matter how many followers you've got. If it's quality over quantity that's great. If people are engaging with you, why do you need thousands of followers? Your audience is fine. The last one, don't be too salesy. We've just mentioned don't broadcast all the time. Don't come across as salesy. Try and engage with your followers.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Right on. How can the listener connect with you? How can they hear your show? The floor is yours.
IAN FARRAR: Wow. So, my show is called Industry Angel Business Podcast. So, if you business leaders, entrepreneurs and-- that's If you are a big social fan, you'll find me on Twitter; Ian Farrar and I'd love to engage with some your listeners Alexander. Especially from across the pond here in the U.K.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Right on. Definitely, definitely check out Ian's podcast. It's an awesome podcast. Awesome. And I love the shout-outs. I got to start doing the shout outs. You're great at the doing the shout outs at the beginning.
IAN FARRAR: Yeah. Well, you've got to engage your audience Alexander. There you go. I'm not doing it for fun here man.
ALEXANDER LAURIN:  Thanks so much for your time Ian.

Check out this previous interview.