How to turn Twitter conversations into business sales

Over the past four months, Twitter’s educational video series has provided tips to help your business unlock more value  — from writing Tweets that drive relevant interactions, to growing your follower base and then engaging them to become long-term customers. In the final video of the series, Twitter takes these concepts a step further and illustrate how your conversations on Twitter can turn into sales.

By Jimmy Hang (@jimmyhang), Small Business Team Twitter HQ

When you start tweeting, first focus on content that generates interactions with your followers in the form of Retweets and replies. Once you’ve established some rapport, mix in your direct offers. To help maintain a balanced content strategy, we suggest an 80/20 approach — 80% of your content should aim to generate engagement and 20% should drive direct response actions such as website traffic and purchases.

Our latest video covers two tips to help write effective Tweets for this 20% of your content strategy:

Simplify your Tweets
Start with a compelling offer, and then draw attention to your desired action with a time sensitive call-to-action that links to your website.

Create demand with a Flock to Unlock promotion
Incentivize followers to spread your offer through Tweets and Retweets before it’s unlocked for everyone to redeem.

Watch the video to learn more:

As you incorporate direct offers into your content strategy, try experimenting with different promotions to see which ones resonate most with your followers. At the end of your promotions, ask followers for their feedback and encourage them to tweet you about offers they’d like to see in the future.

Sign in to Twitter now and ask your followers what sale or promotion they’d like to see soon.


How beauty shines on Pinterest

By  Tashfeen Ahmed & Larkin Brown 

Pinterest helps millions of people discover their style, find the right hair & beauty products and learn how to put it all together.  In fact, there are more than 1.7 billion beauty-related Pins and 44 million beauty boards. It’s no surprise then that women on Pinterest are 28% more likely to be beauty shoppers than the average woman, according to comScore.
People’s interests around beauty tend to fall into four categories:
  • New looks to discover, which inspire you to try new things with your hair and makeup, during everyday and special occasions
  • Products to buy, whether that’s discovering new products or comparing different brands
  • DIY tips, or visual tutorials that help you style your hair and makeup better
  • Eye candy, unusual and dramatic styles that turn heads
Even if your business isn’t about beauty, you can think of organizing your Pins around these loose themes: everyday inspiration, products, DIY tips and aspirational imagery. Create boards that take people from discovery to action, offering inspiration and guidance along the way.
If you’re interested in reaching beauty lovers, you can also use some of the most popular beauty terms in your Pin descriptions—a lot of people are searching for them:
  • More than 35 million beauty tutorial Pins have been added by nearly 7 million people
  • More than 9 million people have added “hair cut” or “hair color” Pins
  • More than 7 million people have added “make-up” Pins
  • More than 3 million people have added “stylist” Pins
  • More than 6.3 million people have added wedding hair Pins
  • More than 1.5 million people have added beauty “hack” Pins
  • More than 2 million people have added a wishlist for beauty products
  • More than 2 million people have nail color boards
If you want to take a look at how beauty brands use Pinterest,  read the case study for Sephora or check out a few of these popular accounts: The Beauty DepartmentBeautylishBirchboxBobbi BrownessieHair RomanceMaybellineOPI and TRESemmé.

LinkedIn Ads Can Be Tested and Targeted Like Never Before

Direct Sponsored Content give brands new flexibility 


LinkedIn advertising is growing up. The company officially launched Direct Sponsored Content on 24 July , a sign of maturity that has brands and agencies ready to invest more in the platform.

Direct Sponsored Content allow an advertiser to test, tailor and target messages similar to how they do on Facebook.

Until now, brands could only sponsor messages that they first posted to their LinkedIn pages as organic content, limiting the freedom to test messaging without broadcasting to all followers and visitors to the page.

“This is a big step for LinkedIn monetizing the feed,” said James Borow, CEO of Shift, a marketing software firm and LinkedIn partner. “Organic content amplified only takes you so far, so it’s opening up this inventory for true ‘A/B testing’ and sophisticate advertising.”

LinkedIn’s ad business is still small compared to other social media rivals with similar propositions like Facebook and Twitter, but as a network of 300 million professionals, it is attracting B-to-B marketers. Also, more packaged-goods brands are starting to see the attraction of the platform and its data around people and jobs, Borow said.

Last year, LinkedIn launched Sponsored Updates, a native ad that fits seamlessly into the site’s experience, a format popularized by Facebook. However, on Facebook brands have had dark publishing capabilities—the ability to build different posts for different audiences and not necessarily show all of them on their business pages.

LinkedIn has been testing a similar system for months, and said today that more than a dozen companies, including Comcast Business and NewsCred are trying Direct Sponsored Content.

“Companies can make their content more relevant by sending personalized messages to specific audiences,” LinkedIn said in a blog post today. “It gives them the ability to test and retest a variety of content in real-time until they get it right.”

LinkedIn’s ad revenue topped $100 million last quarter, growing 36 percent. The pace of growth was expected to slow when it announced second quarter results later this month, according to analysts.

However, the company has been strengthening relations with the ad world, brands and agencies. LinkedIn has built up its ad delivery tools with technology partners, who buy on the site through software, and there are more publishing options for partners to create media there and track how well their posts perform.

Mindshare managing director/senior partner Asli Hamamci works with a number of business-focused brands to buy ads on LinkedIn, and she said the Direct Sponsored Content would be a big draw.

“A lot of brands will jump to test the platform and make it part of their ongoing strategies,” Hamamci said.




Introducing Save on Facebook

By Daniel Giambalvo, Software Engineer Facebook HQ

Every day, people find all sorts of interesting items on Facebook that they don’t have time to explore right away. Introducing Save on Facebook. Now you can save items that you find on Facebook to check out later when you have more time. You can save items like links, places, movies, TV and music. Only you can see the items you save unless you choose to share them with friends.


Save Once, View Anywhere

You can view the items you saved at any time by going to your saved items in the “More” tab on mobile or by clicking the link on the left hand side of Facebook on the web.

Your saved items list is organized by category and you can swipe right on each item to share it with your friends or move it into your archive list.


Get Reminders About Your Saved Items

Facebook will sometimes show you reminders of your saved items in News Feed. For example, they might show you links to articles you saved:


Here is a video on how to use Save on Facebook

Hashtag South Africa-Visual-Guide-to-Facebook-Creative-Specs-May-2014

Infographic: A visual guide to Facebook’s ad creative specifications 2014

Facebook has numerous ad options, and snappy creative can help turn a viewer into a fan or customer.

But how big should an image be? How short should the text run?

Ampush, a Facebook Strategic Preferred Marketing Developer, put together a comprehensive infographicdetailing the specifications of Facebook ad types.

Look below to learn more.

Hashtag South Africa-Visual-Guide-to-Facebook-Creative-Specs-May-2014

The Internet of Things

The Internet of Things- A future that is today

This article is an insight to the mission and vision of Hashtag South Africa – the world is progressing so is our mandate – we feel it best to share with you on the evolution of the Internet and the need for data expansion.

The following is an extract from Wikipedia on the short holistic view on the Internet of Things


Speak to our team on the expansion we have for South Africa

The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to uniquely identifiable objects and their virtual representations in an Internet-like structure. The term Internet of Things was proposed by Kevin Ashton in 1999[1] though the concept has been discussed since at least 1991.[2] The concept of the Internet of Things first became popular through the Auto-ID Center at MIT and related market analysis publications.[3] Radio-frequency identification (RFID) was seen as a prerequisite for the Internet of Things in the early days. If all objects and people in daily life were equipped with identifiers, they could be managed and inventoried by computers.[4][5] Besides using RFID, the tagging of things may be achieved through such technologies as near field communication, barcodes, QR codes and digital watermarking.[6][7]

In its original interpretation, one of the first consequences of implementing the Internet of Things by equipping all objects in the world with minuscule identifying devices or machine-readable identifiers would be to transform daily life in several positive ways.[8][9] For instance, instant and ceaseless inventory control would become ubiquitous.[9] A person’s ability to interact with objects could be altered remotely based on immediate or present needs, in accordance with existing end-user agreements.[4] For example, such technology could enable much more powerful control of content creators and owners over their creations by better applying copyright restrictions and digital restrictions management, so a customer buying a Blu-ray disc containing a movie could choose to pay a high price and be able to watch the movie for a whole year, pay a moderate price and have the right to watch the movie for a week, or pay a low fee every time she or he watches the movie.

Today however, the term Internet of Things (commonly abbreviated as IoT) is used to denote advanced connectivity of devices, systems and services that goes beyond machine-to-machine communications (M2M) and covers a variety of protocols, domains and applications.[10]

According to Gartner, there will be nearly 26 billion devices on the Internet of Things by 2020.[11] According to ABI Research, more than 30 billion devices will be wirelessly connected to the Internet of Things (Internet of Everything) by 2020.[12] Cisco created a dynamic “connections counter” to track the estimated number of connected things from July 2013 until July 2020 (methodology included).[13] This concept, where devices connect to the internet/web via low-power radio, is the most active research area in IoT. The low-power radios do not need to use Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. Lower-power and lower-cost alternatives are being explored under the category of Chirp Networks.[14]

It has been speculated that all IoT devices will use an “IP” address as a unique identifier. Hubs, bridges and other routing type devices make this unnecessary.

According to a recent survey and study done by Pew Research Internet Project, a large majority of the technology experts and engaged Internet users who responded — 83 percent — agreed with the notion that the Internet/Cloud of Things and embedded and wearable computing will have widespread and beneficial effects by 2025.[15]

The Internet of Things

A Simple Example of the Internet of Things

Evolution on the Internet of ThingsThe Internet of Things - Fixing Potholes



Facebook South Africa Infographic Report 2014

Social Media is evolving and so are the people that use it. Digital is growing not just in South Africa, but globally. Businesses and Organisations should avoid the status quo of JUST having a social presence.

Last week Facebook  officially released their numbers into the market.
Below is the infographic for your to use – Facebook  currently is working on the wider African markets like Nigeria and as soon as they are released we will publish the findings on our blog

Hashtag South Africa  - Facebook Stats





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