Digital and Social Media Guidelines for Startups and Entrepreneurs  June 2014

The Presentation inside:

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Digital and Social Media Guidelines for Startups and Entrepreneurs  June 2014

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Executive Summary

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This presentation is targeted for startups and entrepreneurs who are just getting started in Digital and Social Media to promote their business, Mobile App, or service. This presentation has detailed information for the criteria that describe the “how, what, when and why” of the stages needed to help launch your startup efforts. Executive Summary

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Website Landing Page Social Media Ads Email Domains Newsletter Business-to-Business (B2B) Videos General Concepts Executive Summary

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Even if your startup is strictly mobile or is heavily focused on Social Media, you still need to have a website and an email address associated with your domain.   It doesn’t have to be complex or require extensive resources. Website

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It is very easy to build a website without development experience. Don’t spend more than half-a-day building it (or maybe a bit more) so that you can spend more time building your actual product / service and less time obsessing on the “perfect” website. The perfect website doesn’t exist and you will need to regularly update the website content and look-and-feel to be part of the latest trends. Website

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Examples of online services you can use to build your website in half-a-day without development experience ($100 per year or 370 AED per year): Website

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Landing Pages are an important subset of the website.  (Please refer to the “Landing Pages” section of this document) Common website sections:    About, Contact Info, Services / Features, …. Keep the number of sections to as few sections as possible Website

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Examples of Content About:   More focus on what your product will do for me as a user Less focus on the founders (unless your product or service is highly specialized and you need to show that the founders behind it has the needed skill set to deliver) Website

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Examples of Content Services / Features: Indicate the PRIMARY features that your business will solve Website

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For example, You mentioning that the website is optimized for mobile while your service doesn’t solve problems when people are accessing their mobile (for example, finding locations as you are driving), then there is no added value in mentioning it is mobile optimized (Make sure your website is mobile optimized but no need to list it as a “feature” especially that it has become an expected feature) Website

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Always have the mindset of the user:  “What is in it for me?” and focus on the PRIMARY features that address that question.  For example, if voice navigation is one of your add-on features, that falls under the "Read More” section of the features and not the core offerings of the service. Website

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Examples of Content Contact Us: Google Map on your website is not needed if your service doesn’t have people physically come to your office (put a normal office address but no need for a large map) Contact Form to go to an email you check on a regular basis Website

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Examples of Content Contact Us: Respond quickly Phone Number (landline or mobile) Social Media channels to be included Website

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Examples of Content Blog Content: Industry What it means to you Invite guests to participate Resources for blogging: Website

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Don’t sweat the name, yet make sure you can get a decent domain.  Many startups spend more time on choosing a name (and then renaming again and again) and less time on building their product.  Choose a name and URL, and stick with them.  Always have a .com and take advantage of country specific domains as well such as UAE’s .ae Website

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The website needs to be Responsive, allowing it to be easily viewable on different mobile devices.  Most of us access web and Social Media content from mobile and tablet devices. We can do one-by-one website review with the different teams Website

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Fun 404 pages to give a glimpse of the characters of the people behind the team This is meant to be a fun exercise for you and your users.  Don’t spend too much time on this though. Website

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Resources to read more about Fun 404 Pages: Website

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Landing Pages

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Landing Pages do not replace a website.  They are a subset of the website. Landing Pages are usually associated with an ad campaign with a clear Call-to-Action dedicated pages (sign up, download, subscribe, learn more, join,…) Landing Pages

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Resources to read more about Landing Pages: Landing Pages

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Social Media

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Don’t create channels across all Social Media channels that are available to you Be choosy about your channels depending on the needs of your audience Social Media

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For example,  if you are a Business-to-Business type of startup, Facebook is a costly channel for you to get the results you need.  Look more into LinkedIn for your Business-to-Business needs. if you don’t plan on creating regularly 6-second video content, then Vine is not the channel for you Social Media

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Social Media Content Writing for the web is very different from writing for offline channels.  Read more about the “inverted pyramid” writing style.  In summary, get to the point in the beginning, then proceed to elaborate further in the rest of the text body. Social Media

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Social Media Content The general rule for content, is for every 12 updates about others, you earn one update about yourself.  Please make sure it isn’t the other way around. Social Media

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Business Function Customer Support:  A lot of your users will reach out to you via Social Media to get answers to their questions and support on problems they are facing.  Make sure you are ready for that. Social Media

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Business Function Marketing:  Communication via Social Media and running campaigns play a significant role in raising awareness, increasing activity,... Sales:  Sales via Social Media could be direct sales (purchase) or indirect sales activity (such as downloads, signups,…) where the users become part of your community and you work on a long-term sales process. Social Media

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Use Case Scenario: Allows admins to connect with their audience and keep up with activity on multiple Pages, all in one place. General Description: The app allows users to choose from the list of pages they manage and begin posting from it. From the main menu, users can view their lists of pages, view overviews of their pages’ insights, look at the list of page admins, visit the help center, and check out the privacy and legal notices. Tools: Facebook Pages Manager

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Additional tools to help you manage your social media activities from the desktop or while you are on the move (Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, Tweetbot,…) Tools: Other Web and Mobile Apps content/uploads/2011/06/tweetdeck-logo.png

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Make sure you create a Facebook Page for your business (NOT a personal profile). Steps for creating a Facebook Page: Facebook Page Creation

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Concept Planning Targeting Setting expectations in terms of visitor range, community size, downloads,... Ads

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Budget range to keep in mind:  $0.45 to $1.6 per visitor (1.7 AED to 6AED). On LinkedIn the minimum costs per click is even higher at $2 Difference of budgets due to:  different ad networks (for example, LinkedIn has a minimum of $2 per click), peak seasons,... Optimizing for specific objectives (Mobile App downloads, user signups, video views, community growth,…) Ads

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Sample Ad Plan

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Email Domains

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It is very important that you have your @domainname email for giving a professional image for your users and investors. Make sure you don’t use a general use email (such as,, as the public email of your business. Email Domains

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Choosing a solid email provider is critical so that you can focus on your business.  Features to look for are effective SPAM filters, feature-rich capabilities of email when on the go, and ample storage: Email Domains

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Options for you to explore (generally at $5 – or 19 AED - per user per month): Google Apps: Office 365 for Business: Email Domains

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If you want to think long term, an email newsletter is important to keep your users updated with the latest trends in the industry that affect them, as well as what you have been working on recently. Newsletters

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Make sure you don’t use the newsletter as a hard sell or to SPAM your database. Newsletters Image Source:

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Resources for nurturing your newsletter: is a powerful tool.  They are very specific on how you gather email addresses and unsubscribe rates after you send out emails.  They have ample content on their website to guide you through the best practices of newsletters. Newsletters

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If your startup relies on Business-to-Business communication you will need to use a different set of Social Media channels such as LinkedIn and SlideShare LinkedIn Outreach: Use LinkedIn as an effective way to identify business interested in your service and contact decision makers within those businesses Business-to-Business(B2B)

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Customize your communication with them, don’t be generic.  We get enough SPAM in our inbox everyday and don’t need more via LinkedIn.  Be brief, show them the value to them (not your value, but what is in it for them), and request a meeting or call to discuss Business-to-Business(B2B)

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Before you reach out to others on LinkedIn, make sure your house is in order: Properly filled Company Profile Take advantage of Showcase Pages Have your profile and the profile of those who publicly communicate to be properly filled and optimized Have regular updates Business-to-Business(B2B)

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Videos can be used for Product Demos, Feature Promotion, Technical Support,... Resources for readily creating your animated videos: We can do one-by-one video animation review with the different teams Videos

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Measuring the results of your Digital and Social Media Activity via quantifiable KPIs Indicators below have been chosen in a way that they look at the performance of the overall digital assets and how they relate to the business objectives. Overall Use Base (total) Mobile App Installs (total) Monthly Active Users (MAU) Overall Indicators

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Continues… Number of Sessions Push notifications sent per month App Store Ratings App Reviews Received Sentiment Analysis of App Review Monthly website visitors (unique) Monthly website views (total) Social Media Community Size Social Media number of posts by brand Overall Indicators

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Growth Indicators These are specific indicators to keep an eye on to measure growth as you implement more and more Digital and Social Media initiatives. Mobile App Length of Session (monthly average) Weekly Rate of Growth of User Base Monthly Rate of Growth of User Base Monthly Growth Rate of Social Media Community Size Mobile App Positive App Reviews Received

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Continues… Mobile App Monthly Active Users (MAU) Mobile App Number of Upgrades Mobile App Retention Rate User Locations Growth Indicators

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Segmented Indicators Indicators are displayed within specific segments to provide granular insight. Platform App Installs Community Size Distribution App Store Rating per Platform Usage by Countries

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General Concepts

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Using Copyrighted Content Because you are a startup and you are tight on funds, this doesn’t justify using other people’s work without their permission.  This applies to images you use on your website, Social Media, music in your videos, ... General Concepts

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There are stock image photos that you can buy for the price of $10 per image (37AED per image) and they are yours to use across different channels: General Concepts

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Other options available to you: Use content with Creative Commons tags and give reference to the source Email the content owner directly requesting permission General Concepts

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