Bill Banham: Leigh Mitchell, welcome to the Social Media and Tech podcast brought to you by the CPSA.
Leigh Mitchell: Thanks so much for having me today.
Bill Banham: Let's jump straight in with our questions. Firstly, you've had roles where you've been the leader of teams at Perform Outreach, specifically community outreach. How did you inspire your colleagues and volunteers to succeed in these business development roles? How has outreach changed, do you think, due to the onset of mobile use?
Leigh Mitchell: In terms of how I inspire my team, it's all about the impact; it's about how we're making a difference and so what we sort of focus on is the changes that we've made in our client's lives and how we give back and make a difference. We find that that's really motivating to our staff.
In terms of how things have changed over the years because of the onset of the popularity of mobile, for one, we have to make sure that all of our communications are mobile-friendly, including our website. We also want to focus on productivity in terms of making customer connections, but also ensuring that we're taking time to build the relationship with our clients, that first, say offline, through networking at events, through having meetings on site with our clients and getting to know them. Then once we have established a rapport with our clients, then we can take it to the next level and really use productivity through mobile use stuff, texting, having emails as our conversation and using cloud-based technology to keep things organized. Nothing can take away that personal touch and the importance of it.
Bill Banham: Thank you very much. What are the key differences between engaging a community versus, say, attracting customers? In your opinion, where does marketing through mobile devices fit in with that?
Leigh Mitchell: The difference between building relationships with clients and with customers and community is that first, when you're building community, oftentimes you're hosting events and developing rapport with them face to face. Then, the community building continues when you're able to then take that online to social media. For example, with Twitter and Facebook, there's lots of ways in which you can continue that relationship building by engaging your community in ways in which things that they think are important, interesting and fun, and asking them questions and that sort of thing. I think that those things apply to both customers and community.
Bill Banham: Great. Now I'd like to pick your brains a bit. Tell us about some of the hottest trends in mobile, social media marketing for 2017.
Leigh Mitchell: Yeah. Thanks for asking. I think that there is lots to be done with Facebook Live. It's becoming really hot and it shows up, unlike Facebook ... regular advertising that you will see out there where you have to pay to play, right now Facebook is really looking to promote Facebook Live. If you don't know much about Facebook Live, it's an option that you have where you can record live video and it shows up in the streams of people who are following you.
A note will come up saying that this person is broadcasting live and that you can tap in and watch what they're broadcasting. It shows up on the algorithms much more than say a typical blog post that you would post or a sales initiative that you would post. The way in which the trend would work is that you would want to maybe talk about your special promotions and things like that that you have through Facebook Live and then add links to them. That way more people will see what you have coming up.
I think, also, there is a big draw towards text-based campaigns. I think they're becoming more popular and they probably will start to make ... email campaigns will become less important. I find, myself, I'll see a text before I will see an email because my email box gets flooded, so I think tapping into developing a relationship with your clients through text-based marketing is also going to be a trend that will be really hot in 2017.
Bill Banham: Great. What, in your opinion, are two or three of the best social selling tools available through mobile to find and attract new customers?
Leigh Mitchell: Wow. That's a really good question. I think there's lots of things out there, but I personally am using two programs that are cloud-based and when I'm looking for tools, I look to make sure that they're available across all platforms. For example, that it can integrate with my email, it can integrate through an app and my phone and also be available as a program on my computer. An example of that would be Insightly, is a really great CRM tool that's free that it has lots of integration. It integrates with Gmail and Outlook and it also has an app, so I can stay on top of my customer building.
There's also a cool app called CamCard in which you can take a picture of a business card and then it will take all of the information and put it into your database. I also like Rapportive which connects your email with what a person's social profiles are. For example, if I bring up an email of you, Bill, I can see that you're on Twitter and LinkedIn and if we're not connected, I cannot connect with you. It makes things more productive and streamlines things for you so that I don't have to look for you on LinkedIn. You're right there in my email and I can connect with you there.
Bill Banham: Awesome. Thank you. I'm pretty sure we are connected on Facebook, on LinkedIn, on Twitter.
Leigh Mitchell: That's right. We sure are.
Bill Banham: We get everywhere.
Leigh Mitchell: That's right.
Bill Banham: And that's the point. What about productivity tools to increase customer service and efficiency? Do you have any top tools that you could mention there?
Leigh Mitchell: Yeah. Absolutely. In terms of trends, Slack is a system of people communicating with teams. That's an app and it's also a website application. A lot of people are really taking to using these systems to do away with traditional email, so it can connect with their teams on Slack. That's one thing that's really great. It takes away the need to be sending emails.
The other productivity tool .. I love is Todoist and what it does is, again, it's multi-platform so you can have it in your email provider. It shows up there. It shows up as a computer app on your PC or your Mac and it also has an app, so you can keep your "to do" list. You don't have to update them. They're gonna be one list in all those different platforms. It's real time and as you check things off your list, you know that it's gonna be real time no matter which platform you're using, whether it be your phone or your computer. Which I absolutely love, especially this time of year when I want to take care of more than one "to do" list. I'll have a personal "to do" list, and I'll have a work "to do" list, and I can tag things so that it comes up and it's easy to search and that sort of thing. I really love that.
What else? I'm always looking for apps and things that allow me to do things directly through my website. I have a program in which I do all of my social media scheduling, directly through Wordpress, which I find really useful. My shopping cart now is directly through my website, so instead of having to log in to a separate shopping cart, everything is done through the Wordpress panel. It just makes me more productive because I'm not having to log in to multiple platforms, which I find really useful. Anywhere where I can streamline is really helpful.
Bill Banham: On that note of being able to access multiple platforms in one go and streamline processes, what would you say to somebody who says, "Well, I don't have time to manage multiple apps on my phone and to get involved with program management tools like Slack." Would you say to them that, in 2017, there aren't any excuses? What would be your response?
Leigh Mitchell: I definitely can relate to that concern and a lot of times we will test out a different app and then we abandon them and then there's tons of them on our screen. I definitely recommend cleaning up your apps on your phone on a regular basis so it's really easy to delete ones that you're not using. Just like you clean up your files on your computer, you should keep your apps cleaned up so that you only see what you're using.
In terms of using a system like Slack, for example, I find that if you can find out what the most popular system is and sort of embrace it, it's good because, for example, I'm a member of SHEco System and they use Slack. If I want to communicate with those members, I have to be on that system, so while I can appreciate that it is frustrating having to maintain multiple things, I do think that, ultimately, we do have to be cognizant of the trends and what's out there. People who were saying, "Aww. I'm not going on LinkedIn," years ago realized that they would get lost if they didn't go onto those platforms. I'd look for other ways in which to save time and streamline and not ignore the things that are hot and popular because then I don't want to be left behind.
Bill Banham: Let's change focus a little bit now. Please, can you share some content, or storytelling secrets, which you believe would help increase brand awareness?
Leigh Mitchell: Yeah. That's a really good question. I'm a big fan of using Twitter to create content and there's great tools out there in terms of storytelling. For example, you can subscribe to Daily Quotes that will come out through your Twitter profile. I also have a system that we use called Triberr and what it does is it allows you to subscribe to other people's blogs and them to subscribe to you and then you will be sharing people's content and they will share yours through your blog. As soon as something gets published on your blog it will automatically go out to the people who are following you on Triberr and then they send it out. It's a great way to have your content going out on a regular basis without it being work for you, or for the people who are sending your stuff out. It's all automated.
I find that my secret is that where I save time in that automatization, it gives me more time to create more personal approaches to commenting on people's stories. I find it's give and take, so if you're taking time to comment on other people's stories and things that you come across that are neat, then they're more apt to do the same in return to you.
I also think that using video to tell stories is pretty powerful and podcasting, like we're doing right now. You're taking mediums and so, for example, if you have a big, long list of great content that you've had on your website, well, look at repurposing it. You could take some of your most popular blogs and turn them into podcast series. There's lots of ways in which you can be savvy and take your content further.
Bill Banham: I would fully support your enthusiasm towards podcasts. Most definitely. Okay. We're going to be wrapping up fairly soon, before we do, in terms of takeaways; those quick wins to grow awareness and leads, can you offer any practical ideas for salespeople looking to get more from the use of their phones, which they can implement right away, as soon as they finish listening to this episode today?
Leigh Mitchell: Yeah. Absolutely. I would definitely look at downloading some apps that will save you time. For example, if you are out networking on a regular basis, look at downloading CamCard which will scan your business cards and will turn it into a contact. Which then can connect to something like Evernote, which will send that person a request through LinkedIn. Evernote's a productivity tool that I really think is powerful.
The other thing that you can do is use ... there's a system called Zapier, I might be saying it wrong, I apologize if I am, but it's Z-A-P-I-E-R. It has a series of all kinds of different ... how do I describe it ... but basically, what it does is it automates processes for you. For example, if you have MailChimp as your newsletter subscribing system, it could take the contacts and then add it to your database. It will actually take a series of tasks that you have to do and automate it, but you can set them up so that these Zapiers talk to each other and will automate a whole series of tasks. It really saves time and energy in doing repetitive tasks that you don't want to be spending time on. That's another tool that's really cool that you can set up.
The other tool that I would recommend is using something like Hootsuite or, let me think here, there's lots of different- Buffer is another one, and CoSchedule. PostSchedule is the program that I was mentioning earlier where it will take your content directly from your blog so you don't have to leave. Say if you're on Wordpress, you don't have to leave Wordpress, you can schedule all of your social media promoting your blogs directly through Coschedule. Then, it has an app that you can send out things to Instagram and whatnot. Instagram's another really popular format that people are on.
In terms of blogging, microblogging is really popular. Your phone becomes a great tool because instead of getting people to go directly to your website, you can create bite-size information about your business, just on social media platforms. Your mobile phone becomes a real great tool to do microblogging. Where you're just sharing little tidbits about your business and drawing interest to your business just through social media.
Bill Banham: Wow. I didn't get a chance to write down enough of those different tools that you've just gone through there, so I'm going to be listening to this podcast again later this week, I think, and trying out just some of them. My goodness.
Leigh, this has been awesome. Thank you so much. Before we finish off, how can our listeners learn more about you?
Leigh Mitchell: Yeah. Thanks for asking and thanks for having me on your podcast. I'm excited to listen to it as well. If people want to get in touch with me they can visit me at leighmitchell or womeninbiznetwork. I am on social media under my name, Leigh Mitchell, and also, thrive2gether with a 2 is my social media for Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.