Sunday, November 29, 2015

Social Media Scheduling Made Easy

Grow Your Small Business Using Social Media

Almost all of us know that social media is powerful in reaching multitudes of people and getting your message to your ideal customer.  Yet for those of us with a handmade business, where we design and create our products, photograph our products, and post them online for sale, time management is a constant challenge.

How do you find the time to post your content and promote your products throughout the various social media networks?  
  1. You can stop at various times throughout each day to create and post your social media content on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, and Tumblr.  But if you do that, can you really fulfill your orders or make anything new for your shop? 
  2. You can just focus on one social media network and post on it several times a day.  This is more manageable. But is it a good marketing strategy to put all your eggs in one basket?
  3. You can choose a scheduling app to post your content for you to the channels you want them to go to. You need to decide what you want to post, and then tell the app what should go out when and where. 

Use Social Media Scheduling for Best Results

I found Viraltag to be the best social media scheduling app for me.  It is a pleasure to use this tool, and it works with many different social media networks. Viraltag is a "Marketing Platform for the Visual Web". Their goal is to help you grow your brand by using the power of images.

Connect to -

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Tumblr

Once you connect to your preferred social networks, you will find the Viraltag logo at the bottom right of images online or you may upload an image from your files.  These photos can be selected and posted to your social media accounts at the timing you prefer.

In the screen shot below, you will see that I chose a photo of a product from my shop, clicked on Viraltag, and it now appears in my Viraltag scheduler. From here I can write a description, add or change a link, and choose the social media networks on which I want to share this image. I can then add it to my queue which places it in the next time slot for the network I chose, I can schedule it for some other time, or I can post it immediately.

This is a quick process.  Once you have scheduled some posts to social media, you may go to your dashboard on Viraltag to see what is scheduled for the various dates, times and social media networks. You can edit from this page. You can see below that I have one posting for Facebook, one for Pinterest, and one for Twitter.  They will each post at the same time.  This can all be edited or deleted.

If you want to design or tweak an image, you can click on Content from the menu on the left, and then you have the option to design your perfect image in Canva for the social media network you are using.  The best thing about this is that by clicking on the Design in Canva button Viraltag sends you directly to Canva.  You can then create your design there perfectly proportioned for the social media network you have chosen. You then simply click on Publish and Viraltag brings you back to their app to finish writing a description and posting your design.  So smooth!

Now, we all know that we should be measuring the results of our efforts.  Viraltag comes to the rescue on that as well.  Viraltag displays all your recent posts and lets you know the shares, likes, and comments you have received.   See the screenshot below for an example of that.

I hope you will give Viraltag a try for scheduling your social media images.  The team there is very responsive if you need help, and they provide education as well.  Words cannot express how good I feel about having this tool available.  Now I can focus on my social media calendar once or twice a week and then go about my business of designing products, making them, photoing them and selling them to my customers.

Note:  I am updating this post on 1/12/16 to let you know that I am now an affiliate of Viraltag.  Please click on the Viraltag ad in the sidebar of this blog if you wish to join.  They will provide me with credit toward my monthly fee if you join through my affiliate link.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

How to Make A Unique Custom Photo Glass Cabochon

As I told you in my last blog post, I want to share how to take any picture you have and edit it to make a photo glass cabochon.

Choose Your Photo

First you need a digital photograph that you would like to use for this project.  For the purposes of this tutorial I will use the picture below.  I chose this one that was sent to me by a customer because it is way too big and contains more in it than we would want to include in the photo glass cabochon.

We will select the face of the kitty, whose name is Kernel, for this photo glass cabochon.

Cat and Dog

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

How to Make a Photo Badge Reel

Photo Glass Cabochons 

Badge Reels made with photos supplied by my customer
Badge Reels made with photos supplied by my customer

Many of the id badge reels that I sell in my shop are made with photo glass cabochons.  These are very popular.  A photo glass cabochon  is made by placing a photo or graphic design under a glass disc.  These are used by many jewelry artisans to make photo glass pendants and earrings.  I use them to decorate the top of id badge holders.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Handmade at Amazon - A New Venue to Buy and Sell Handcrafted Items

handmade at amazon tag
Thursday, October 8,2015 was the big day.  Many serious artisans of handcrafted items were waiting for Amazon to launch their new Handmade at Amazon platform.  Artists applied to be a part of this group of people allowed to sell their wares on Amazon.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Five Benefits of a Well Made Beaded Lanyard

 Turquoise Blue Butterfly Beaded Lanyard

I enjoy creating lovely beaded lanyards, and I hope many of you like them as well.  However, a lanyard is not just a decorative item, it is a functional item as well.  It gets hard use every day.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Believe in Yourself!

Believe in Yourself!

Without believing in ourselves we can be swayed to live according to what others want and not what we really believe is right for us. We can also be defeated by all the obstacles along the way.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Adjust Your Sails

Adjust Your Sails

Years ago I referred to myself as a cock-eyed optimist. Every morning I would awaken with the thought that things would go well, and it would be a better day than the day before. I particularly thought this with regard to my relationship with my first husband. It is a lovely bright eyed idea, but it did not take into consideration that circumstances did not align with the stars in my eyes.
What was wrong? What was I doing wrong? Basically I did not adjust to the situations, circumstances, and personalities in my life. I just kept expecting it to get better. Of course, it got worse, not better.
When I was in the throes of a divorce, I began to learn to adjust my sails. Counselors and wise people in my life helped me see that I needed to adjust to forces in my life over which I had no control. God was there by my side to do that. Fortunately, my basic nature of being an optimist did not get lost. I learned to make choices that brought about positive changes in my life instead of just expecting that to happen on its own.
Some people whine and complain about fate and how they are always victims of misfortune. That actually causes them to be victims of misfortune, again because they are not adjusting to their reality.

Adjusting your sails is no easy breezy thing. Just like a sailor must learn the skills to adjust the sails to the wind so he can navigate through the water, we must adjust our attitudes and our actions to navigate the winds blowing through our lives.
Are you able to adjust your sails?

Adjust Your Accessories

Do you get frustrated and upset when you can’t find your glasses? Perhaps you need to adjust how you handle that and get rid of your frustration by using a Plum Beadacious eyeglass chain or a magnetic eyeglass holder.

Is your id badge getting on your nerves? Make it easier to wear and display with a chain or beaded lanyard, or attach it to your clothing with a pretty badge reel from Plum Beadacious.

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