Why You Should Be Using Custom Snapchat Filters

First, if you aren’t using Snapchat for business, then you need to read why your business should be on Snapchat.

I am now assuming that if you are still reading this post, you are currently using Snapchat. If you are, then you may or may not be familiar with the current free Snapchat filters. If you take a picture or video in Snapchat and then swipe left or right, you will be able to use one of the free filters. These filters are also known as geo-filters.

Snapchat uses your location (as long as it is turned on) while you use the app to figure out which free filters to allow. For example, if you are in Manhattan, then you may be able to use the Manhattan skyline Snapchat filter.

A more recent example was the Snapchat filters that were created for the Super Bowl. If you were at the game, you were able to access additional filters that included the score and time of the game, a Broncos or Panthers logo, etc.

Snapchat has recently announced that they are allowing custom filters to be created for a price. The custom filters will start off at $5 and increase based on the amount of time of the filter and the area it will be used.

Below are four reasons why you should be using custom Snapchat Filters


As previously mentioned, the cost is starting at just $5 for a custom filter. That means for the cost of a latte or frappacino, you could have your own custom Snapchat filter. If you are not able to afford the costs of the Snapchat filter, then I think there are larger problems.

Brand Awareness

Every time someone uses the Snapchat filter and either shares the image / video on their Story or with their friends and followers, your brand is gaining more recognition.

Fan Engagement

Snapchatters love filters. They use them. They may even snap a picture just because of the filter where if there was not a filter, they may have never taken the photo. For example, let’s take a retail brand like Hollister. The benefits of creating a custom filter that can be used inside their store locations so that customers can take pictures and share with their friends is much higher than the costs for creating it.

Cross Promotion

Snapchat also offers the opportunity to download and save your photo to your camera roll. That means, you can use the Snapchat filters, text, and paint brush tool to mark up your photo, and then save. Once that photo is saved to your camera roll, you can then share to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and any other social network that you use. This means that when someone uses your custom Snapchat filter, it can be cross promoted amongst other social media channels. For example, a contest could be ran on Facebook by having people share their Snapchat custom filter photo on Facebook. You are now reaching the audiences of both of the customers followers.

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Why You Should Be Using Beacon Technology


What is beacon technology?

Beacons that are placed in a specific location, typically inside of a business, use Bluetooth to detect smart phones that are within a specific range. These beacons can then communicate with that device via Bluetooth. This type of technology can be a game changer if you own a small, retail business.

Retail stores are by far the best place to use beacon technology. If you own or manage a retail location, then you must engage in marketing techniques that use this type of tech. Beacons allow a business to know how many potential buyers are in their store at a given time based on the Bluetooth signal from their smart phones. The potential customers’ phone must have Bluetooth turned on a the time, so it may not be able to target every person within the store.

Since you have already spent a lot of money trying to get these customers into your retail location, you want to make sure that you make a sale. Beacons allow you the opportunity to send out targeted ads to people in your retail location on the spot.

Think about this.

You own a clothing store and use a beacon technology. You can send out a flash sale coupon to anyone in the store who has their Bluetooth turned on. This coupon could be emailed, texted, etc. and include a 10% off all purchases within the next 30 minutes.

You can also send personalized coupons or discounts that relate to a specific detail about your exact location.

There are many beacon technologies, however, Facebook may have the best. Facebook offers their Beacons to qualifying businesses.

With this beacon, which is very easy to set up, Facebook uses its Places Tips function to find cell phones within a specific location and brings local businesses’ posts to the top of that person’s news feed.

This means that you can create Places Tips specific content that you know will automatically be shown to people who are on Facebook within your location.

Let’s take a look at an example.

You are the owner of a restaurant / bar and you have a special Happy Hour menu, so you create a Places Tips piece of content that is shown only to people in the restaurant. When a couple comes in and logs into Facebook so they can check-in to let all their friends know where they are, they will see your post at the top of their feed that talks about your Happy Hour specials. That couple now orders or asks the server / bartender about these specials and a sale was made because of the Facebook Bluetooth Beacon technology.

Having the ability to show an ad to a willing and able buyer gives you a huge advantage. Making sure that you have the right type of content created is the difficult part.

Remember, no matter what industry we work in, we are ALL in the content creation industry.

If you haven’t requested your Facebook Bluetooth Beacon yet, be sure to do so now!

Why You’re Missing Out on Business by Ignoring LinkedIn Ads


linkedin-logoAs we approach 2016, we have to remember to continue to market like the year we are in. Where are people’s eyes at most of the day? On their social media accounts, primarily Facebook. I have discussed in the past why Facebook Dark Posts are the most cost effective strategy when targeting a customer. However, LinkedIn is not so bad itself.

In fact, LinkedIn offers a great opportunity for B2B lead generation and their ad targeting is great as well. Let’s get into how you can effectively use LinkedIn ads to grow your business.

Sponsored vs Text Ads

LinkedIn offers two different options of advertising, sponsored updates which show up in a user’s timeline and text ads which typically show up in the sidebars. Both options can be beneficial, in fact, running both at the same time can be your best option. Text ads in the sidebar are typically a bit cheaper, but may not show the same results.

Sponsored updates show in the timeline which means that they will also show up on mobile devices or tablets, as well as the desktop version of LinkedIn.com.

If you choose to use a sponsored update, you can use something that you have posted in the past, or you can create a brand new status update. What you want to include in the status update is totally up to you, but I recommend either a link to an article or a white paper download in order to collect their email address.

Ad Targeting

Now we can get to the targeting of who the ads will be shown to. I can provide a lot of different examples, but let’s just start with one. Let’s say that you want to connect with dentists. Maybe you sell dental supplies and want to connect with the dentist themselves, or even more importantly, the office manager who may actually purchase the supplies.

You can target these people in a few different ways. You can select to target people whose occupation is “dentist, orthodontist, etc.” You can also select a certain radius within a specific zip code. With this, your status update with a link to download a white paper that a dentist would be interested in will show up in their LinkedIn feed.


Here’s a more aggressive approach to targeting that can be even more effective. If you have a specific location that you sell these dental supplies to and know the dentist office name, you can then find out the name of the office manager or purchasing manager of the office. With that name, you can target that specific person if they are on LinkedIn. Create a list of the names that you want your sponsored update to be shown to and add them into the targeting list on LinkedIn.

This is a great opportunity to make first contact with someone and have them sign up for a white paper and provide you their email address.

As I mentioned, there are several more examples that I can provide about how you can use LinkedIn targeted ads to reach your target customer.

If you would like more information about how you can best execute on these ads, then contact me today.

4 Ways Realtors Can Use Social Media to Sell More Homes



If you are a realtor, than your game is all about selling more homes. We live in 2015, going into 2016, so it is important to market like it is 2015. What does that mean? It means that more people are on Facebook and Twitter than anywhere else. That means while they are in the car also! The For Sale signs that are in the yards of your listings probably are not being seen as much. Why? Because not only is the passenger in the car looking down on their phone, so is the driver half of the time!

So, we have outline 4 ways that you as a realtor can use social media to sell more homes.

Content about the Area

No matter what industry you are in or what you sell, you are a content company. What does that mean? You sell homes, not content right? Wrong.

Content is the basis of gaining a sale. Let’s look at an example of why creating content about a specific area is going to help you sell more homes.

You have several listings in West Palm Beach, FL, so here are a few ideas that you can create content about:

  • Top Rated Schools in West Palm Beach, FL
  • 5 Up and Coming Neighborhoods in West Palm Beach, FL
  • Why 20-Somethings Should Buy in West Palm Beach, FL
  • 10 Family Friendly Activities in West Palm Beach, FL this Fall

These are just a few topics that you can create content around. Why does this help? You are providing value to people who may be searching for a home in your specific area and have a few questions. People are more willing to buy from people who provide value to them, not just a sales pitch.

It is perfectly acceptable to include a lead form or email signup form on your site where this content lives. In fact, that is the main purpose of this content.

Not only will creating content based on an area that you are selling homes help you sell those homes, it can lead to additional listing opportunities from people who see that you are creating this content and know you are going to sell their home for them.

Twitter Search

Using Twitter is another way to share great content with your potential buyers. In the first examples above, we were creating our own content and sharing it, but now, we can take content created by others and share that as well.

By using Twitter Search, you can find articles and other forms of content within a specific location to share. For example, in West Palm Beach, FL the local newspaper shares an article about the decrease in crime rates over the last 24 months, you may want to share that article because crime rate is a factor in the home buying process.

Just like you are using Twitter Search to find potential buyers, potential buyers are using Twitter Search to find a potential home to buy. When sharing your content, or other’s content, it is important to include relevant hashtags. For example, using #westpalmbeach in your tweet.

You can also use one of several tools to help schedule these tweets ahead of time, so that you do not need to be on Twitter at all times to post these. For example, if you have 5 new listings this week, you can schedule 5 tweets about each one throughout the next week at difference times.

Find out how to schedule tweets for an effective Twitter strategy.

Video Tours / Live Streaming

There are two different ways that you can use video to help you sell more houses. First, instead of just using images when doing a listing, why not take your smart phone or video camera and do a complete walk-through of the house and post the video with the listing? A picture is worth a thousand words, but a video could be worth thousands of dollars in commissions!

These videos do not need to be a very high production with special lighting and special effects. A simple smart phone camera can be used to record while you walk from room to room. If you want to make it even more effective, talk throughout the tour to explain the brand new travertine floors and the newly remodeled kitchen with the quartz countertops.

Another form of video usages that can be utilized and effective is live streaming. There are two main players in this area, Periscope and Meerkat. These allow you to use the camera on your phone to live stream video to users. How is this helpful may you ask? Let’s use an example of the real world.

You decide that you want to run an Open House for a new listing from 9-1 on a Saturday. I am a potential buyer and I see this open house sign, but unfortunately, I am on my way to drop kid number 1 off at soccer practice because kid number 2 needs to be at football practice. Meanwhile, kid number 3 has a lacrosse game from 10-11:30. After that game is over, I have to drive across town pick up kid number 1 and number 2 and get them lunch. I look at the time and the open house is now over, I missed it and missed out on the opportunity to see the house.

Now, if I drove past that open house sign, and I saw “Watch Open House on Periscope from 10-11” I now know that I can log onto Periscope and watch a tour of the open house live on my phone while I am waiting for kid number 3’s lacrosse game to end. I no longer missed out on the open house and since I became very interested in that property, I send you a message to schedule a private showing of the house and 24 hours later an offer is submitted and accepted.

Another home sold thanks to live streaming an open house.

Facebook Dark Post Ads

Facebook dark posts are something that are highly under-utilized because most people don’t know they exist. You may have ran Facebook ads before, but have you ran a dark post?

What is a Facebook dark post? Basically, a dark post is is a status update that you can create, but it doesn’t actually show up on your Facebook wall. Well, why is this good if it doesn’t show up on your wall? Because, you can target a specific demographic that you want the post to show up in their feed!

How does this work?

Remember that content that we spoke about above? Well, now is when we can really begin to use it. Let’s say we wrote an article about the best free playgrounds in West Palm Beach, FL. We can now create a Facebook dark post with a link to the article (which on our site, we will have an email newsletter signup so we can collect this person’s information). Now, we can also choose from hundreds of demographic choices to whom we will show it to.

For example, we may want to show the ad to the following persona:

  • Female
  • 30-45 years old
  • Married
  • Parent
  • Rent (we can choose this option because they may be looking to buy a home)
  • Has Children

Once we publish this ad, which we can do for as little as $5/day, this ad will only show to the people in this ad demographic. Once this post is seen by the mother’s that we have targeted, they are likely to share, like, comment, etc. on this post. That means that we will now reach a much larger audience and reach other people in this target demographic. We are now increasing our odds of having one of these people sign up for an email newsletter and also one of the people they share with being a person looking for a new home.

Another example to use Facebook dark posts is whenever a new listing is ready to go. Facebook allows you to target a specific zip code along with an annual income. If the home you are selling is a $500,000 home in 90210, then you can target people with an annual income to afford a home in that price range in that zip code.

That’s it! These 4 simple ways to use social media will ultimately help you sell more homes.

If you have any questions about how to implement any of these strategies, please reach out.

5 Reasons to Use Snapchat for Your Business


A lot of people have opinions of Snapchat. Unfortunately, majority of those people have never used it or know what the app even does.  They may have negative things to say about it because their teenager uses it, but that doesn’t mean that businesses can’t take advantage of this app.

I grew up with a phrase, “Don’t knock it, till you try it”

Here are a few reasons you shouldn’t knock Snapchat for your business until you try it. Continue reading

Tips for Tweeting

twitter for businessIf you have a Twitter account for your business, it may be difficult at times to know what to tweet. Many business Twitter account users often make the mistake of going straight for the sell and could stand to learn a few tips for tweeting.

Although it may be effective in spreading your online presence, it can often be one of the worst methods to use as many Twitter users will view it as spam.

For this reason, it can be quite difficult for small business owners to effectively promote their business through the use of Twitter. Continue reading