Social Media Tools I Use to grow my biz
Recorded at Studio Cowork, Coworking space in Golden Valley
Jenna Redfield is the leader of the Twin Cities Collective, the largest resource in the Twin Cities for bloggers, small business, entrepreneurs & creatives.
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Hey, what's up twins this collective it's Jenna back again with another episode this week, I've decided to do another solo episode, I actually found out according to my analytics that those actually do even better than some of my interviews. So that kind of surprised me. But honestly, I understand because a lot of it has to do with what I'm saying is just straight up information. I kind of cut to the chase, I don't really talk to someone about what I'm what I'm using. But honestly, I love interviewing people. And I really think that people will get a lot out of it. So I hope that you guys are listening to all the episodes. Because I absolutely love talking with people because sometimes it's hard to sit here and chat for a while by myself because then I don't have anyone to kind of banter with. But I wanted to talk today about a few tools that I use. If you haven't listened to it, please check out my Instagram episode where I talked about the tools that I use for Instagram, I'm pretty sure I'm still using a majority of the same tools. But I'm going to run through them real quick if anything has changed, or been updated. So right now I'm looking at my phone right now. And there's a few different things that I use. Obviously, some of the ones that Instagram comes out with like layout, Boomerang, I actually just bought this new app called resize for this is great if you have a non vertical photo, like a horizontal photo, and you want to upload it to your story. But you don't want it to get all cropped and weird. So I paid I think it was like two or $3 for this app called resize for story. And basically what it does is it kind of cropped your photo into a sort of story size image. So that's something that I use for Instagram. In addition to Instagram, I also use a lot of different apps. But the one I've been using a lot lately, and something that a lot of poly photographers use is the light room app. I never really used the app before on my phone, but I use it personally on the desktop. And so that was something that I recently started getting into is actually using it on my phone, what you can actually do is have a preset set and then you download it and you can sync it from your computer, what I learned about light room is you can only sync it to one computer. So if you have the subscription again, it's $10 a month for Photoshop and light room. And then obviously more if you want the full suite of Adobe products. But what I love about light room is you can actually copy from a previous photos. So if you have a preset and you've had it's synced to your phone from your computer, you can actually look at that photo, click away from it, click on to another photo and then actually copies over all of your presets which a preset is basically your preset dials and your preset exposure rates and all that I would just Google presets if you if you're kind of confused. I also didn't really know what they were until about two years ago. A few other apps that I use my main app that I use for scheduling, I guess Instagram is called preview. And I'll obviously put a link to that in the description. But basically, that helps me set especially with the Twin Cities collective account, I can upload the screenshots that I take and then sort of figure out what looks good next to each other. So I can kind of preview the app, before I preview the Instagram feed before it actually goes live. And I I always look to see if it looks good next to the next photo. Again, this is a free app, which is great because a lot of those scheduling ones and the ones that you can preview the app I've used, I use them old ones in the past that I had to pay for and it was just annoying. Preview is totally free. And I absolutely love it. It's probably one of my favorite Instagram apps. I also use a few different apps to with followers I use the main one is called followers, all again link in the description. But basically that kind of keeps track of who I'm falling, who's following me back, and who's basically, like, unfollow me, because then I tend to unfollow them back, I just, I don't like to play the follow unfollow game. But that's just something that I use. So that was just a quick update on some of the Instagram apps that I use. Again, I'm very much a or organic Instagram user, I don't always like to have everything scheduled ahead of time, I like to post it in the moment, I post every day between about eight and 9am. And some days it's earlier some days later, it depends on what how busy I am. But I want to talk about a few other apps that I don't really talk about a lot. And that is other social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter and Pinterest, etc.
A lot of them have to do with scheduling. So I'm really busy. And I don't really have time to sit around and schedule tweets and schedule Facebook posts. So I actually invested in this platform, it's $20 a month, and it's called smarter Q. And you might have heard of apps like buffer, Hootsuite Meet Edgar, there's quite a few of them out there. But what I love about smarter Q is that not only is it inexpensive, but it's also an app that can recycle and reuse your content. So if you publish a blog post and say like April, and it's not really front of mine, but yet you know you still it's an evergreen posts, which basically means that you can post it a year from now and it'll still basically be relevant. You can add that to your queue or your list or line I guess on smarter Q. And it will tweet it out at random times. And you can actually schedule when you want the time to do it. And all of that. So I wanted to just tell you about that. Because a lot of people spend so much time scheduling tweets and scheduling posts. And I just feel like this just takes all that away. For example, with the Facebook group on Tuesdays collective, I actually have it set for that so that I don't ever have to remember to post at 9am every single day of the week, which that is what I do in the group. So paying 20 bucks a month for me is worth it because then I don't have to stress out Oh, no, I haven't posted today. Oh no. I'm in the car. Oh, no. Do I have the graphic? Oh, no, that was my life for a while before I got smarter Q and again, this isn't a paid promotion at all. I just totally use this app. But yeah, so it's very interesting to me how the social media world has changed. And I think that having something scheduled is really important. But I also think that I also tend to post randomly to throughout the day, and it's very much timely, it's very much a day of, for example, Twitter, I always have scheduled tweets. But then I also tweeted live. So if I'm at an event, I do live tweeting, I just sometimes post random stuff on my Twitter, my Twitter is really random. And it's just kind of my thoughts. I don't ever brand by Twitter, it's just generated field. It's just me, it's not my business. It's not Twin Cities collective, we have another Twin Cities collective account. But yeah, so that's something that I wanted to kind of talk about is smarter Q and A way to be smarter about scheduling your social media, especially if you're a blogger, especially if you're in the Social Media Marketing World. Or if you just have a small business or a brand and you just aren't have no time to schedule things or no time to post on social. This does it all for you. And I really recommend it. So right now I have the four platform plan. So I can post on four different platforms I posting currently on my personal Twitter, on my Facebook group towards this collective Facebook group, and my personal Facebook page, you can have like up to 10 accounts, I think are probably even more but right now I was like those are the main ones that I'm focused on. And the ones that I feel I need to be posting on and don't have the time to do it. Obviously, you can't really post to Instagram because Instagram has a lot of rules about posting. And Pinterest is another one that I'm also kind of like I don't know, Pinterest and me have been kind of on a decline over the last year, I'd say I just haven't used it as much. And also, I feel like I it's just too complicated right now for me to be using. And I know it works for a lot of people and it's worked for me in the past. I just feel like right now, it's very hard to grow on there unless you have an amazing content schedule, which again, I'm I'm really bad at posting lately on my blog. So it's just trying to figure out where I need to be posting and where people see my stuff, where to spend the money on marketing. And again, I've talked about this in the past on the podcast, and how Facebook, youth groups are, to me one of the best ways to share your story and share what you do and get leads. I've gotten so many leads Facebook groups, like probably 80% of my business comes from Facebook groups. So that's why I always tell people, you know, you got to go to Facebook groups, if you're not a Facebook user, you should be because if you have your own business, that's where people are hanging out. And that's where you need to be. Even if you hate Facebook, then hire someone to do it for you. And then again, that's a whole nother topic is social media marketers, do you hire an agency? Do you hire someone else to do it? There's so many people locally that are, you know, people that say that they do it. But honestly, personally, you have to do your research on those people. Because they could say that their social media expert, but it's like, do they have a million followers? Or do they have 10? It's like, you kind of have to base what they their proven results. It's like, Oh, do they have an Instagram account with $10,000? Okay, they do. Okay, great. That probably means that they know what they're doing. You know, I just don't always trust people that say they're great at growing and Instagram, but then have nothing to prove that. That's honestly one of the reasons I do twins this collective is to kind of use it as like, an example of, Hey, I know what I'm doing on social, I know what I'm doing on Instagram. I've built this audience up over the last year, it's all organic, I haven't paid a cent. And it's just me posting every day being consistent. And honestly, the followers come. So it's it's interesting for me to go into places and be like, this is what I kind of proven myself as a way to be able to grow an audience, but also to grow an audience that is interested in what I have to say, because when I first started the Twin Cities collective account, I never posted anything about myself, it was very much a group community account. And I just was trying to feature people locally. And obviously since like Instagram Stories came out, I've definitely been trying to show my face more because I really want people to see the faces behind the account. Because I don't want to hide behind the account. that's never been my issue. You know, I want people to know who I am and know that there's someone behind this account. But I also don't really want my face on like every single post, if that makes sense. Because it's technically not an account. For me, it's an account for that group and for the community. But I still wanted people to know who I am. Especially I got events, I realized a lot of people didn't know what I look like. And so they were looking for me and they couldn't member what I look like so now when I go to events, people recognize me from the stories, which is great, because it means that people are actually watching and i love connecting. I went to an event this week with towards the Startup Week, which has been a really fun event. And I saw a few different social media influencers at that event, and some of them I had never met. And so I went and talked to some of them. So it was really great to really connect in person be like, Hey, I know you from Instagram, and I follow you I know a lot about you. And it's easier to break the ice that way. I think that's one of the main reasons I love today's collective is we can connect online first and then meet in person later. So going back to social media, I talked to Jennifer last week, if you guys haven't watched or listened to that episode, I would really recommend it because we talked a lot about, like what to do and what not to do on social. And just kind of the best practices about posting on social because a lot of people are really hesitant to start social media accounts for their businesses or their blogs, because they don't know what they're doing. And honestly, the best way to learn is just interacting starting to something doesn't have to be perfect. Just learning. I remember when I first started my blog, which was in 2014. I knew nothing, nothing about anything. And it just was a lot of trial and error. A lot of researching YouTube video watching, talking to people asking questions, reading forums, honestly, people are like, Well, how do you know this stuff? I'm like, I took the time to learn this stuff. And it's taken me three years, three years of my life every day learning new things. So when people come to me, and they're like, Oh, I like you know, all this stuff. I'm like, Well, it's because I spent the time. Honestly, I things have changed quickly. And I've just kind of learned to adapt with that. So sorry, I'm going off on like a little tangent there. But yeah, so that's something that I just wanted to share is there's a few different ways that I use social and it's definitely changed a lot. And Twitter is definitely something that is controversial now, and I feel like people are just kind of spouting political stuff, and I read that stuff. But I don't always know like, Where Where is the place for my business on there. But Instagram has always kind of stayed the same for me, I think that there's still like really awesome people on there. I think it's such a beautiful, beautiful platform. And I think that they're continuing to grow. And they're continuing to make it easier for us to connect with each other. Obviously, Facebook is always been one of my favorites. And that's where a hub of our stuff happens. And I've been recently getting into a lot of advertising on Facebook, and it's definitely something I could maybe dig into at a later time. Let me know if you want more about Facebook ads. I think that they're super interesting. And I think it's a really interesting way to grow your audience.
Other than that, let me know if you have questions about anything on social, a lot of people come to me and I think their biggest question is like, you know, how do you build an audience on social and honestly, it's consistency, it's following the right people it's interacting, spending the time, it's coming up with not only good content, but beautiful content. I think that people underestimate how much people like to look at pretty pictures. Honestly, like all the pictures that I picked for this collective are beautiful and, and I think people get inspired by that. But then they also like to know the reasoning behind the photos. They like to read the captions, they like to watch the stories. They like to be entertained, and they like to know what's happening. And so honestly, it's been an interesting ride so far for me, with Twin Cities collective. And with this podcast, I just started subscribing to this thing called Lipson, which basically helps me understand the analytics behind the podcast and who's actually listening to it. And obviously, since we started here at Studio co work, I think it's obviously the quality has gotten so much better, we have way better microphones and people can come here and talk to me, which is so so great. And I just think that just getting the word out, let people know about us, I, I just think that it's such a powerful group to be part of. And I've built it in a way where I want everyone to have a voice, but also where we're not shouting over each other. Which is why I don't allow anyone to post on the walls about self promo up. There's a space every week for that. And I will delete it if I see it. And I also have to approve every post before it goes up. And I am very strict, even with people that I'm very good friends with. I'm like, you know, that's not appropriate for the wall. I'm not going to let you use that. Even if I'm really good friends with them. So yeah, so that's just kind of something that I needed to figure out and all of that stuff. So yeah, so that is basically what I want to talk about today, smarter q which is a great app. And then there's also a few other ones that I just use. I'm trying to see on my phone. Obviously analytics, Google Analytics. Another great free app is called post cron. And that's almost like a buffer type thing that I use. Obviously, I use apps like Slack, and Trello, Asana, those are great project management tools. They're not really social media tools. But they're great for scheduling social media. Also, if you guys want to know a few of my favorite Facebook groups, I posted it in the Twin Cities collective before, but I just kind of want to reiterate some of them if you are looking for some Facebook groups to join. One of my favorites, obviously is rising tide society. That was one of the biggest ones I joined. And it was back when I had just started. And it's basically a group for creatives, mostly out to people in the wedding industry. But it's not just people in the wedding industry. And so but that one has really helped me know, kind of the ups and downs of having a Facebook group, they have about 50,000 people in that group. And so it's gotten really big. And it's definitely sometimes overload 73,000 excuse me, not 50,000 a few other ones savvy business owners is obviously in my heart that got about 13,000 people and I'm actually on Team savvy. So I do a lot of video editing and stuff for them. So I've it's like crazy that I've gotten work out of being part of a Facebook group and I actually work for the Facebook group. It's crazy. A few other ones social media managers is great if you're in a social media world. Being boss is another great one thing Creative Collective is all of those girls are so great. They're out of Kansas City. So think Creative Collective, if you're ever needing any information about anything, they have a course for it. Heart centered biz bosses is another great one. Love that one. I'm in that one a lot. She podcasts if you're in the podcast space, that's a great one. If you're a designer, elevate cultivate is another one of my favorites. dub Sato. I mentioned it before when I talked about CRM, but they have a Facebook group that I'm in as well. And then I'm in a lot of Facebook groups for like Squarespace, people that use Squarespace.
Blogging groups, and path groups, entrepreneur groups, I'm in probably like 100 groups, I'm in a lot. I don't I don't obviously, participate in all of them. But it's nice to just kind of see them all in my feed and just be inspired by the people that are in these groups, posting questions. I try to answer them when I can. Yeah, so those are just, I would say those are my favorite ones of all the ones I'm in. There's obviously still a few more that I haven't mentioned. But of the main ones I would say definitely savvy heart center, biz boss, and the Creative Collective would definitely be wants to join. So I hope that you guys have enjoyed this episode about social media. Let me know if you have any more questions. And if there's anyone you want to interview, I want me to interview that's local about social. I have, I think one or two or three more slots this month. So I have a few people on my list, but I definitely want to know your opinion too. So I'll talk to you soon. Thanks again for listening to the Twin Cities collective podcast conversations with creatives with your host Jenna Redfield. Make sure to head on over to iTunes to subscribe to this podcast so you don't miss a single episode. New episodes come out every Monday. Make sure to also leave us a review to let us know how we're doing as well as helping us grow our subscriber count. We also want to let you know that we have a website Twin Cities collective calm where you can learn more about us. Join our online directory learn more about events as well as join our Facebook community. Shout out again to Allison burns, who created all of our artwork as well as our logo, as well as Nicola whitelist for the use of the song in the intro. I also want to say thanks to studio cork for letting us use the podcast studio that they have on site. Make sure to go to studio co worker calm to learn more about how you can start podcasting too. Thanks again for listening and I'll talk to you guys next week.