Caruso’s OC Happenings ~ Central County


 

CENTRAL COUNTY

 

COSTA MESA

TOMORROW June 9 & 10is the annual BBQ Cookoff and Family Festival. This event is benefitting Kristie’s Foundation, a non-profit that provides assistance, support and cherished moments to critically ill children and their families. Delicious BBQ – Classic Car Show (Saturday) – rib eating contest – beer & wine tasting – Great Kids Zone with activities & entertainment- Live Main Stage music & entertainment.

FOUNTAIN VALLEY

NOW-10, 2012 is the annual Summerfest. This 4-day celebration will include carnival rides, food and beverage booths, game booths, local entertainment, exhibitors, non-profit organizations, live music, beer/wine garden, Battle of the Bands on Sunday, Live Sports Tent, the Fountain Valley Classic Car & Truck Show, and the Dog Day Afternoon event.

HUNTINGTON BEACH

Coming up Saturday, June 16, 2012 is Chili at the Beach from 11 am – 6 pm. Chili Cook-Off as well as a Salsa Tasting Contest (New this year!) There will also be Dads Toys (Choppers  – Trikes), 2 stages of live music and plenty of Kids’ Activities. Benefiting Boys and Girls Clubs of Huntington Valley. For more information you can call (714) 536-8300. AND June 24, 2012 from 2:00pm – 6:00pm is Pups N Pinot. An afternoon of wine and food tasting, live entertainment, silent & live auction, “Pooch Pageant” at the Newland House. Raising money for A Leg Up Rescue and Waggin’ Trails – rescuing dogs (and other animals) from certain death in our shelters or bad living situations ensuring they get placed in a forever home. $35 pre-sale, $40 at the door. VIP $45, $50 at the door – vip begins at 1pm.

IRVINE

Coming up June 22-24, 2012 is the annual A Taste of Greece! This is a fun-filled Festival for the whole family! Pastries, dancing, full-Scale carnival, boutique & delicious Greek food including a wine taverna. There will also be cooking demonstrations, Greek folk dancing lessons, church tours and opportunity drawings Admission $3.00 Children under 10 FREE.

LOS ALAMITOS

Nothing to report

NEWPORT BEACH

Nothing to report

ORANGE

Coming up Saturday & Sunday, June 16 & 17 2012 is the Annual Irish Fair and Music Festival from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm. The Great American Irish Fair and Music Festival is the largest festival of its kind in the Western United States. The Fair highlights 16 entertainment areas featuring the very best in the music, song, dance and sport of the Irish, along with over 100 Irish, Scottish and English import shops and arts and crafts vendors along with sheepherding shows, Irish horse shows, Irish dog shows and one of the largest Irish Step Dancing competitions in California. ALSO coming up Saturday, June 23, 2012 from 8 – 9:30 p.m. is Nature at Night – Dusk to Dark. Join inside the Outdoors on the first official Saturday evening of summer! Experience nature as the evening fades from twilight to starlight. With a Naturalist as your guide, discover night life out on the trail. Cost: $5 per person/ $25 per family. Advance registration required. For more information you can call (714) 708-3885.

SANTA ANA

Nothing to report

SEAL BEACH

Nothing to report

TUSTIN

Nothing to report

VILLA PARK

Nothing to report

We Are Now Accepting Qualified Listings

Now providing “Short Sale Services”

Call Today for More Info on Our Summer Lovin’ Plan

 
And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CLHMS CRB CRS GREEN GRI

Past President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

Caruso’s OC Happenings ~ South County


 

 

South County

 

ALISO VIEJO

Nothing to report

DANA POINT

Nothing to report

LAGUNA HILLS

Nothing to report

LADERA RANCH

Nothing to report

LAGUNA BEACH

Starting June 29 through September 2, 2012 is the annual & very popular Sawdust Festival! This outdoor arts and crafts festival is great for the whole family. Watch artists create their work and buy directly from the artists while enjoying the wonderful atmosphere. For more information you can call 949-494-3030.

LAGUNA NIGUEL

TOMORROW OPEN HOUSE – SATURDAY JUNE 9, 2012 FROM 1-5pm. Beautiful Ocean View home in the Prestigious Ocean Ranch Community! Come on by 22 Emerald Glen, Laguna Niguel & see all this home has to offer!

LAKE FOREST

Nothing to report

MISSION VIEJO

Nothing to report

RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA

Nothing to report

 

 

SAN CLEMENTE

TOMORROW Saturday, June 9, 2012 from 10am-4pm is the annual San Clemente Garden Club 2012 Garden Tour. The San Clemente Garden Club presents the 2012 Garden Tour of unique coastal gardeners. Enjoy a self-guided tour of several private coastal gardens including the student vegetable, flower and butterfly gardens at Concordia Elementary School. The selected gardens will showcase varied garden styles, horticulture, hard cape and garden entertaining area ideas for every tour guest. Ticket order forms are available at online. For information please contact Mary Mohr at (949) 498-2818
SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO

Coming up June 30-July 1, 2012 is the annual Relay for Life. A fun and inspirational 24-hour event that brings together a community to raise funds for cancer research. The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is the largest cancer-fighting event in the nation, raising nearly hundreds of millions of dollars last year alone! It’s a time and place where people come to celebrate those who have survived cancer, remember those we’ve lost, and fight back against a disease that touches too many lives.

 
*As seen in orangecounty.net & ocregister.com

 

We Are Now Accepting Qualified Listings

Now providing “Short Sale Services”

Call Today for More Info on Our Summer Lovin’ Plan

 
And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CLHMS CRB CRS GREEN GRI

Past President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

 

Caruso’s *NORTH* County OC Happenings


 

 

 

NORTH COUNTY

 

 

ANAHEIM

Coming up Saturday, June 9, 2012 from 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. is Get Outdoors! OC at Yorba Regional Park & Tyke Hike.Happier, Healthier, Smarter…Join us for outdoor activities geared to inspire your family to spend time outside. Easy Naturalist led hikes, nature crafts, and more! Each Get Outdoors event is at a different location with various games and activities depending on the park. Feel free to drop in for all or part of this free event. A special Tyke Hike will be offered at this event. Cost: Free (This program is generously sponsored by a grant.) For more information you can call (714) 708-3885.

BREA

Nothing to report

 

BUENA PARK

Nothing to report

CYPRESS

Nothing to report

FULLERTON

 Nothing to report

GARDEN GROVE

NOW May 25-28, 2012 is the annual Strawberry Festival! The festival is a parade and carnival celebrating the city’s strawberry-growing history. Free admission! For more information you can call 714-638-0981.
LA HABRA

Coming up June 8-10, 2012 is the annual La Habra Valley Fair! This fair celebrates the success of the youth in our community while giving them a place to showcase that work, as well as learning through competition. High quality hormone free meat will be showcased and available to bid on. Livestock shows – including pigs, sheep, goats, steers and dairy run from Friday evening through Sunday afternoon. There will also be a dog show, car show, youth exhibits and Chili cook-off.

LA PALMA

Nothing to report

PLACENTIA

Nothing to report

STANTON

Nothing to report

WESTMINSTER

Nothing to report

YORBA LINDA

Coming up Sunday June 3, 2012 from 11-5 is Celebration of the Arts. A very unique fine arts & music festival featuring nearly 100 exhibitors, including almost every type of visual and performing art that you can imagine. What makes it unique is that it very family friendly, offering free activities for all ages, sharing the creativity & talent of our community. This event is NOT a carnival, craft fair, beerfest, or fundraiser, but truly a day where talent & creativity is shared and inspired! There will be Continuous entertainment on 5 stages & a variety of delicious food is available for lunch, including teriyaki chicken bowls, funnel cakes, Italian sausage sandwiches, pasta bar, hamburgers, & tacos. This is a free event, free parking. The event takes place in three locations; Yorba Linda Community Center, Thomas Lasorda Jr. Memorial Field House, and Hurless Barton Park. For more information you can call 714-996-1960.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*As seen in orangecountyregister.com & orangecounty.net

 

We Are Now Accepting Qualified Listings

Now providing “Short Sale Services”

Call Today for More Info on Our Summer Lovin’ Plan

 
And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CLHMS CRB CRS GREEN GRI

Past President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

 

Caruso’s *CENTRAL* County OC Happenings


 

 

CENTRAL COUNTY

 

COSTA MESA

Coming up June 2-3, 2012 is the annual Lions Club Fish Fry. Held since 1945, the event features a parade, carnival, food and rides in Fairview Park. Event includes fish fry, raffle, baby contest carnival and rides. Fish Dinners $10. Also coming up June 9 & 10is the annual BBQ Cookoff and Family Festival. This event is benefitting Kristie’s Foundation, a non-profit that provides assistance, support and cherished moments to critically ill children and their families. Delicious BBQ – Classic Car Show (Saturday) – rib eating contest – beer & wine tasting – Great Kids Zone with activities & entertainment- Live Main Stage music & entertainment.

FOUNTAIN VALLEY

Coming up June 7-10, 2012 is the annual Summerfest. This 4-day celebration will include carnival rides, food and beverage booths, game booths, local entertainment, exhibitors, non-profit organizations, live music, beer/wine garden, Battle of the Bands on Sunday, Live Sports Tent, the Fountain Valley Classic Car & Truck Show, and the Dog Day Afternoon event.

HUNTINGTON BEACH

Coming up June 2-3, 2012 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. is the Huntington Beach Concours, a Classic Car & Motorcycle Show! The Huntington Beach Concours is a fun event where car lovers and enthusiasts can come to enjoy themselves, while knowing that they are also helping a worthy cause, The Huntington Beach Library Children’s Resource Center. It is rated # 1 in California, please help us keep it that way by attending this year’s event. ALSO coming up Saturday, June 16, 2012 is Chili at the Beach from 11 am – 6 pm. Chili Cook-Off as well as a Salsa Tasting Contest (New this year!) There will also be Dads Toys (Choppers  – Trikes), 2 stages of live music and plenty of Kids’ Activities. Benefiting Boys and Girls Clubs of Huntington Valley. For more information you can call (714) 536-8300. AND June 24, 2012 from 2:00pm – 6:00pm is Pups N Pinot. An afternoon of wine and food tasting, live entertainment, silent & live auction, “Pooch Pageant” at the Newland House. Raising money for A Leg Up Rescue and Waggin’ Trails – rescuing dogs (and other animals) from certain death in our shelters or bad living situations ensuring they get placed in a forever home. $35 pre-sale, $40 at the door. VIP $45, $50 at the door – vip begins at 1pm.

IRVINE

Coming up June 22-24, 2012 is the annual A Taste of Greece! This is a fun-filled Festival for the whole family! Pastries, dancing, full-Scale carnival, boutique & delicious Greek food including a wine taverna. There will also be cooking demonstrations, Greek folk dancing lessons, church tours and opportunity drawings Admission $3.00 Children under 10 FREE.

LOS ALAMITOS

Nothing to report

NEWPORT BEACH

Nothing to report

ORANGE

Coming up Saturday & Sunday, June 16 & 17 2012 is the Annual Irish Fair and Music Festival from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm. The Great American Irish Fair and Music Festival is the largest festival of its kind in the Western United States. The Fair highlights 16 entertainment areas featuring the very best in the music, song, dance and sport of the Irish, along with over 100 Irish, Scottish and English import shops and arts and crafts vendors along with sheepherding shows, Irish horse shows, Irish dog shows and one of the largest Irish Step Dancing competitions in California. ALSO coming up Saturday, June 23, 2012 from 8 – 9:30 p.m. is Nature at Night – Dusk to Dark. Join inside the Outdoors on the first official Saturday evening of summer! Experience nature as the evening fades from twilight to starlight. With a Naturalist as your guide, discover night life out on the trail. Cost: $5 per person/ $25 per family. Advance registration required. For more information you can call (714) 708-3885.

 

 

SANTA ANA

Coming June 2, 2012 is the annual Heritage Music Festival. Bluegrass, Folk and Americana – live music, craft brew beer garden and great food! Plus a Native-American exhibit, a blacksmith demonstration, an adobe brick making workshop, mounted police, photographs in heritage costumes, docent-led tours of the historic Kellogg House, storytellers, student performances in the gazebo between main-stage acts, a popcorn cart, and lots more family fun! For more information you can call (714) 540-0404.

SEAL BEACH

Nothing to report

TUSTIN

Coming up Sunday, June 3, 2012 from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. is the annual Tustin Street Fair & Cook-Off! The event features the Chili Cook-Off, craft booths, non-profit food vendors, entertainment, Watermelon Eating Contest, kid’s carnival, music and much more. Admission is free. For more information you can call (714) 573-3326.

VILLA PARK

Nothing to report

 

*As seen in the ocregister.com & orangecounty.net

 

We Are Now Accepting Qualified Listings

Now providing “Short Sale Services”

Call Today for More Info on Our Summer Lovin’ Plan

 
And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CLHMS CRB CRS GREEN GRI

Past President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

 

Caruso’s *MOTHERS DAY* OC Happenings ~ Central County


 

CENTRAL COUNTY

 

COSTA MESA

Coming up May 18-20, 2012 is the annual St. Joachim Church & School Spring Fair. St. Joachim presents a SeaKings Atlantis themed fair. Dive into some fun new games and rides. Enjoy great food and new entertainment. Ride Tickets: Special pre-sale price is 20 tickets for $15. ($20 for 20 tickets once the fair begins) Purchase tickets after mass on Sunday or in the parish office.

FOUNTAIN VALLEY

Nothing to report

HUNTINGTON BEACH

Sunday May 13, 2012 at 11 a.m., 1pm & 3 pm seating’s is Don The Beachcomber Mother’s Day Champagne Brunch.  Featuring 2 LIVE Polynesian Shows and a free gift for all Moms! Brunch will include a tasteful variety of traditional brunch offerings such as Make-Your-Own-Omelet, Macadamia Nut Pancakes, Salmon, Carving Stations, Snow Crab, Salads, Pastas and Fruit as well as a delicious assortment of dessert and Hawaiian Shave Ice! Adults $39.95, seniors $29.95, Kids $14.95 (13 & younger) Kids 5 and under eat free!

IRVINE

Sunday May 13th from 10:00a to 2:00p is Mother’s Day Brunch at 6ix Park Grill at Hyatt Irvine. Enjoy a varied brunch buffet for Mother’s Day at 6ix Park Grill. Food items include king crab, sushi, breakfast selections, entrée specialties, salads, a dessert gallery and champagne. Also enjoy live entertainment and complimentary valet parking. Reservations highly recommended.

LOS ALAMITOS

Nothing to report

NEWPORT BEACH

Sat, May 12 & Sun, May 13, 2012 at 10:00AM to 12:30PM, 1 PM to 3:30 PM, 3:30 PM to 6:00 PM is Mother’s Day Whale Watching & Dolphin Cruises. Newport Landing Whale Watching offers multiple whale & dolphin cruises on Mother’s Day. Each cruise is 2.5 hours and lots of amenities including indoor and outdoor seating, upper viewing deck with seating, large indoor salon with full service bar/beverage center, and captain and crew members to make the most of your cruise. Gray whales, finback whales, giant blue whales, several varieties of dolphin, sea lions and more make for great viewing opportunities. Tours depart from Newport Beach and scenery is incredible. All moms come out for only $15 over Mother’s Day weekend.
$35 Adults $25 Kids 3 – 12. For more information you can call 949-675-0551.  

ORANGE

May 12, 2012, 9:30 am – 2 pm & May 13, 2012, 9 am – 3 pm is Mother’s Day at Orange County Mining Co. On Mother’s Day, the Orange County Mining Company offers a Special Mother’s Day buffet. The fix-your-own ice cream sundaes at brunch are a favorite for kids of all ages. The combination of well prepared foods with the unique decor makes the Orange County Mining Company a truly enjoyable experience with family and friends. Call for Reservations! 714.997.7411

SANTA ANA

Sunday, May 13, 2012 from 10:30 am – 3:30 pm is Tangata Mother’s Day Buffet at the Bowers Museum. Located in the Bowers museum’s Mission-style courtyard, the 160-seat restaurant is offering a buffet brunch on Mother’s Day that includes such items as Classic Caesar salad, Turkey breakfast sausage, Fresh fruit salad with passion fruit coulis, Artisan bread, breakfast pastries, Medallion of beef, Fresh Atlantic salmon and Wild mushroom ravioli. Prices are $40 for adults | $16 children under 12.

SEAL BEACH

Nothing to report

TUSTIN

Coming up Sunday, June 3, 2012 from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. is the annual Tustin Street Fair & Cook-Off! The event features the Chili Cook-Off, craft booths, non-profit food vendors, entertainment, Watermelon Eating Contest, kid’s carnival, music and much more. Admission is free. For more information you can call (714) 573-3326.

VILLA PARK

Nothing to report

*As seen in the ocregister.com & orangecounty.net

We Are Now Accepting Qualified Listings
Now providing “Short Sale Services”
Call Today for More Info and our “Spring Thing….”

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CLHMS CRB CRS GREEN GRI

Past President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

Caruso’s Earth Week ~ Save the Butterflies


 

Butterflies play a critical role in maintaining the health of our environment. They help pollinate fruits, flowers and vegetables; provide food for other animals; and enchant children and adults alike with their beauty and flight. But like many other creatures, more and more butterflies are becoming endangered as the wild places they inhabit are lost to development or as they fall victim to pesticides.

Here’s what you can do to help bring the butterflies back:

Garden for wildlife. Grow plants butterfly caterpillars like to eat. In many cases, these will be plants that are native to your region; they’ll attract native butterflies as well. Consult local gardening directories or contact your nearest agricultural extension agent for planting recommendations.

Choose nectar-rich plants. Fill your garden not only with plants caterpillars will want to eat, but also with those from which butterflies can drink. Options include buddleia, heliotrope, milkweed, mint, verbena, and zinnias.

Build a house. If your yard doesn’t provide enough dense foliage to allow butterflies to hibernate and nest, build them a box they can use that offers protection from predators and harsh weather. The interior walls of the box should be rough enough to allow butterflies to grab a foothold. Scatter small twigs and leaves inside to promote hibernation and egg laying, and include thin vertical slats on the front to allow the butterflies to enter and exit. Make sure the box is hung no more than four feet above the ground and has a south or southwest exposure.

Put out some water. A shallow dish or birdbath will provide the moisture butterflies need to thrive.

We Are Now Accepting Qualified Listings
Now providing “Short Sale Services”
Call Today for More Info and our “Spring Thing….”

And thank you for making me Your Orange County Real Estate Connection.     

www.MichaelCarusoRealEstate.com

Best regards,

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CLHMS CRB CRS GREEN GRI

Past President, Orange County Association of Realtors (949) 753-7900

Caruso’s Social Media Refresher Course!


 

 

As you know social media has taken over. I know I have done posts in the past about incorporating social media into your business, but everyday it’s changing and updating so I thought I would do a little refresher course. After researching though the internet & going over past social media post, here are 30 ways your business should leverage Social Media.

 

1. Look for Potential Board Members on LinkedIn. This year, go out of the norm by heading to professional social networking site LinkedIn and look around for potential board members. It is always difficult to find a cocktail of talents in a real world scenario so LinkedIn becomes a great repository where you can mine for and find board members. Whether you are looking for executive board members or a board of advisors, LinkedIn has a huge pool of highly skilled and experienced people who can add value to your business.

2. Add Social Follow Buttons to Everything. In the socially connected world of the Internet today, everything your business puts online should be sharable. That means your website, marketing emails, and blog must all have sharing tools for web users to share the material. One big mistake businesses make is to add sharing tools to what they think is sharable. Allow users to print or email your website’s pages. The notion that content is copyright and should not be shared works counter-intuitively to the need to socialize content.

3. Get Creative with using Embeddable Tweets and Facebook Social Plug-ins. Twitter has launched a nifty new feature that allows webmasters to embed tweets in their web pages. The new feature makes it easy to cross-pollinate your web content using social media. The incentive to create tweets that are highly reusable also presents itself, and the perceptive business owner will know that an embedded tweet is great exposure and offers more reach. Using Facebook social plug-ins will also allow you to add your social stream to your website, so visitors can get exposure to your social deployment within your website.

4. Use Storify To Create Stories. Storify is a social media aggregation service that allows you to compile and curate content from across Twitter and then use those tweets to tell a story. For example, if there is an event in your neighborhood that you would like to leverage, then Storify allows you to search for all tweets related to that event and then publish stories that use the Tweets as a basis of knowledge. Storify is also great for compiling product launch follow-up stories, company event tweet streams, and so on. Explore the platform to discover even more uses in a business scenario.

5. Know Your Listeners and Stay Always-On. We live in an always-on world where company listeners are peppered all across the globe meaning there is always someone awake somewhere when you are asleep. Previously, this meant that businesses had to endure blackouts when their part of the world went to sleep. Not anymore because today you can use tools such as Hootsuite and Buffer to schedule social media updates for the times when you are unavailable. For smaller businesses without an international audience, this provides a great way to spread your efforts by letting the software manage your social media updates while you take care of other business.

6. Use Pinterest. Pinterest is social media’s new kid on the block, and it is off to a fast start. The platform has barely been officially launched and it is already rivaling Facebook in driving traffic to businesses’ websites. If your business is not already on Pinterest, then you are missing a huge social media opportunity. For those who may not know what Pinterest is, it allows users to “Pin” their favorite images from across the web onto their Pinterest profile board. Other Pinterest users can then browse these images by category or by profile and discover new things along the way.

7. Engage Existing Brand Evangelists. Many businesses leave this avenue bare when they could be driving engagement through their brand evangelist networks. Do not sit back and let this resource go untapped; reach out and get them involved. Ask for re-tweets or ping backs to your content. Also, get them involved in social media conversations by addressing them directly through tweets, Direct Messages or @mentions. This will draw upon the networks that these brand evangelists have access to as well as create serious goodwill and build your business’s trust bank with your core network.

8. Nurture Leads On Social Media. Social media offers a great opportunity to nurture leads. For many businesses, social media is a place where social things happen, not business-related things, and they end up missing a great opportunity to build their leads. In many cases, leads will engage with the business in a casual way, but it is upon the business to identify these leads and act upon them. Engage the leads and extract as much value from them as you can. Of course, many conservative social media experts will tell you never to “sell” on social media but if done right, lead generation on social media can return some great results.

9. Hash Tags Are Your Friend, But Use Them Wisely. Hash tag marketing, as it is now commonly known, has grown to become the Twitter equivalent of viral videos on YouTube. With correct positioning and a well thought-out tag, hash tags can create awareness and boost engagement in unprecedented ways. The negative aspect to it is that hash tags are often hijacked and used to tweet content that you may not want associated with your business. This is why hash tag marketing has to be done very carefully and monitored continuously to keep things under control. In the event that a hash tag does go ugly, carefully extract yourself from it and let it run its course. Hash tags with a certain level of neutrality are the best in this case.

10. Social Media Intelligence for Sales Prospecting. Lead generation is one thing, but sales-prospecting using social media is one of those oil-and-water things that just do not mix with social media. After all, social media is a place to engage people and not to harass them with sales calls and all such monkey business, right? However, that is the problem right there. Why invest in social media and yet you “cannot” make any sales using the channel? As you build your social media presence, glean intelligence from the conversations you are having and apply them to your sales prospecting strategy. Further to this, soft sell your network using cleverly crafted messages that do not intrude on the users’ social experience.

11. Represent Your Business Well. One thing that lets businesses down is their social media profile presence. They do not take time to create a well-defined and representative profile, and the mess that ensues is that customers are unable to identify with the social presence as a link to the offline presence. If you are tempted to put up your Facebook page or Twitter handle as-is, do not do it. Pay someone to create a great representation of your company or at the very least, use your company logo as your profile picture and not an egg (Twitter) or your glorified self in beach shorts and a straw hat (Facebook). Separate your business from yourself and keep that space well defined and properly branded.

12. One Voice: Not Yours, That Is. You have created your business social media page and everything looks great. On your way home, you feel the urge to tweet about the lousy traffic and because you had signed in with your company handle, you go ahead and tweet using it. #FAIL Keep your personal life off your company’s Twitter handle and only use it when tweeting very well thought-out messages that have relevance to your business and your social media strategy. If you do indeed opt to tweet personal matters, make sure those matters pertain to the business and not unrelated personal goings-on.

13. Keep It Social and Make It Fun. On the other hand, it is very easy to make the company social media image so boring and archaic that driving engagement and interest becomes almost impossible. Socialize your business as much as possible without losing your main goals. This means you have to give your business a human face and a fun and interesting one at that. Try as much as possible to post interesting information and tidbits that will get people talking, re-tweeting and possibly replying. Some excellent examples include posting interesting facts related to your industry or posting how-to resources, two things that have been shown to be very sharable across social media networks.

14. Use a Simple Memorable Handle. Your business may have a very meaningful and complicated name but that should not be what goes up on your social media page. Avoid using business name extensions such as “Limited”, “Incorporated” and so on, as it only goes to make the page stuffy and stiff. Use your first business name and then follow that up with a proper information page that gives a brief but informative bio of your business. Consider it socializing your business much in the same way humans call each other with their first names. Using a simple and memorable name will also make it easy for users to guess what your handle is in the event that they do not know it beforehand.

15. Have Tweet-Ups, Google Hangouts, Etc. Technology has made it easy for businesses to meet up with their customers and followers remotely. If you want to drive engagement, hold Tweet-ups (Twitter meet-ups) and host Google Hangouts on your company’s Google Plus page. This will add extra social media points to your business as it will give your followers some human faces to associate with the business. Google Hangout has especially come to help businesses connect with their followers in a one-on-one manner, something all the other social media platforms do not currently offer.

16. Demand Social Media Viral Interaction. This probably sounds like the days of pop-ups with no “Close” button but it is not, much as the argument is the same. Incentivize your followers to engage with your brand on social media. This can be by using promo codes that are only served on social media or holding competitions that need users to engage on social media to take part. In principle, this will give your followers little choice but to follow your lead, but the incentive bit will tend to soften this principle. Once your followers are in your social space, do not just sit back and count those re-tweets with relish, get in there and engage as much as you can. The point is, after all, to start a wave, which you should now ride.

17. Have a Primary Social Media Management Application. Using technology to manage your social media presence is great but a likely trap you should avoid is using too many tools at the same time. If you decide to use Hootsuite, stick to it, and if you opt to use TweetDeck, stick to it is as well. Using a multiplicity of tools will muddle up your analytics, and you will not be able to create a consistent content narrative for your social media deployment. Another advantage of using one tool is that it is obviously cheaper when you consider that most tools have premium packages. The basic incentive is, however, to keep all your data in one envelope, as it were, and have a seamless experience as you interact with your followers.

18. Have One Primary Channel; Facebook Or Twitter (More Twittering). There have been multiple studies done that say one social media platform is better than the other is for different purposes. It is not yet clear which platform is the best, but one thing is clear, Twitter seems to do better for businesses than Facebook. The reasons are a bit ambiguous but the results do speak for themselves, a reason brands are shifting their efforts to Twitter and leaving their Facebook pages open for cosmetic purposes. Nevertheless, for your business, the reasons go beyond ROI. It also works toward unifying your online voice and addressing one audience as opposed to having dual conversations.

19. Keep Communication Channels Open. Do not be shy to respond to clients or followers, despite the nature of their communication. As long as the content is business related and is not offensive, engage your customers in the conversations they begin. It makes more sense to have such a conversation with the follower than to leave the opportunity to fall to redundancy. Many businesses have realized that social media is actually a brilliant channel for customer care with entire departments being created to handle the steady stream of customer care queries emanating from social media. Take the plunge and include social media in some of your more traditional departments to streamline with new paradigms.

20. Become an Industry Leader. Social media is all about influence, so if you have no influence, no one is listening to you. Design your social media strategy carefully and let the end game be to gain influence within the networks you infiltrate. Brands that come to be known as influencers enjoy the benefits of the network effect where their profiles and messages enjoy large numbers of shares across multiple networks. You can do this by positioning your brand to be an authority in your field of business. However, a more subtle way is to position your business as a truly social brand, something that carries great rewards in the social space.

21. Join the Conversation: Don’t Be Shy, Ask For Re-tweets, Shares. If you want to socialize your business truly, drop the shyness and business face and dive in feet first. Social is all about putting your business out there and being vulnerable. Ask your followers to re-tweet or share content. Email your customers and ask them to follow you on Twitter or like you on Facebook. Go out there and make things happen. In addition, do not be shy to jump into conversations. Let your followers see a social face to your business and this will drive engagement and grow your business community.

22. Use A Blog To Tell Your Story. Sharing is the buzzword today in social media; however, what do you put out there for sharing? For starters, no company website is complete without a blog. Creating a company blog will offer your followers somewhere to find out more about your business when they first land on your site from Google or from social media. The blog will also keep your regular customers interested when they visit the site. Create unique and compelling content for your blog to keep it fresh and do not forget to share the content widely across social media. Company blogs area a great way to tell the world your business is indeed alive and in business.

23. Make It Easy To Subscribe To Your Stories. Now that you have a company blog, you now need to socialize your content and you do this by making it easy for people to subscribe to it. Use syndication services such as Feedburner, Feedblitz or Aweber to create a community of listeners who you can communicate to easily using email or any other CRM channels.

24. Use Facebook and Twitter Ads. Both Twitter and Facebook have launched revamped ads for their networks, and this is one area businesses need to explore diligently. Twitter has launched self-service ads, which makes it easy for businesses to create and serve ads without having to go through a sales representative. Facebook has also launched Facebook Wall Ads that display ads within users’ walls rather than in the side panels. These two will be a great opportunity for businesses to benefit from social media especially as Facebook approaches a billion users and twitter approaches 200 million active users.

25. Location-Based Services Will Be Big. Use Foursquare, Gowalla or Facebook Places to promote your business on a local level. These apps allow businesses to not only map their premises but also attach offers and promotions using the apps. Facebook Events and LinkedIn Events are also a great way to get the word out on product launches and other events, whether on-location or online. Location-based services are only but taking off and the possibilities will continue to emerge with time.

26. Go Local with Twitter’s Advanced Search. Twitter offers a search feature that makes it possible to curate tweets from a particular locality. This can prove useful for a business that is targeting a local market and wants to find out what people in that locality are talking about and what the trending topics are. Google has also incorporated a people search for influential people on Google Plus in a particular search result. This means you can easily find the social influencers in a particular area by using local search and then reaching out to them.

27. Sharable Avatars and Memes. Avatars and memes are big on the Internet today and if your business can create an angle and get into the craze, the possibility that a shared item will go viral is very high. Create fun and exciting memes and avatars, which people can share with their friends and that, do not smack of sales talk. Great memes and avatars that have the company website and details make a great addition to the social engagement effort.

28. Use Fringe Social Media Tools. Known as fringe social media tools, applications such as Eventbrite, wikis, and SlideShare offer a business a great platform to create engaging content, which can then be shared across other networks. It can be said that these do not strictly fall under social media, but they do have social-media-like features such as sharing and following tools, and these can be of great value to a business. They are also more of niche tools and may most benefit businesses that can use them effectively in their business processes.

29. Promote Everything. Many excellent opportunities are lost in social media because businesses neglect to mention important issues going on. For example, a new hire can be tweeted and the newbie introduced to the community. This will also give that employee incentive to bring in their network of friends to the company’s community. Mimicking the human interaction with social media where almost everything is posted to social media, businesses must learn to create conversations out of their day-to-day happenings.

30. Connect Everywhere but Stay Focused. Social media has come to join other forms of communication channels that already exist such as email and texts. This must be appreciated so that social media is not given undue pre-eminence over other forms of communication. Take the necessary steps to engage on social media but as with everything, remember that overkill does more harm than good. Balance your social media and traditional channels to derive the best value from both realities.

 

 

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