The Hello Bar is a simple notification bar that engages users and communicates a call to action.

must read articles social media marketing

Looking for sparkle and shine to mix into your social media strategy? Look no further. Here are seven articles by some of the best writers and researchers around. Once you’re through with these, you’ll know exactly what it takes to build a social media strategy that will shoot you to the stars.

Oh, and if you still want more, we’ve actually linked to over 25 articles and Twitter accounts. So you’re getting a banquet for the price of a value meal.

Now let’s get started…

Social Media Supremacy: 10 Experts Reveal Their Strategies (ViperChill)

Author: Glen Allsopp

What makes it unique?: The level of research and diverse range of opinions from experts.

Our favorite quote:

Be consistent, stick with it for the long-haul, write for a specific audience, always try to improve the quality of your content and have a plan – know what your goals are and constantly evaluate your progress towards them. Do all these things and blogging will be really rewarding for you.

Glen Allsopp of ViperChill is renowned for investing hours researching and writing in-depth articles. This post on social marketing doesn’t disappoint. It’s from 2010, so the advice on Facebook is a little outdated. The tips on Twitter, blogging, and forums are excellent.

See also: 9,000 Uniques in One Day: A Viral Marketing Case Study.

The Art of Writing Great Google+ Posts (Copyblogger)

Author: Demian Farnworth

What makes it unique?: This article brings a copywriter’s approach to using social media.

Our favorite quote: This is a copywriter’s perspective on what works with Google Plus.

A good opening will get your post read. A bad opening will get your post ignored.

Farnworth has studied what it takes to get your Google Plus posts read and to build a following. His formula is sound marketing applied to Google Plus. Follow the lessons learned, and you’ll improve all your marketing.

Also take a look at: Demian Farnworth shares his content strategy and more – like why he digs vacuums.

A Minimalist’s Guide to Using Twitter Simply, Productively, and Funly (ZenHabits)

Author: Leo Babauta

What makes it unique?: You’ll see how Babauta applies his minimalist approach to the chaos of Twitter.

Our favorite quote:

Twitter is like a river … you can step into it at any point and feel the water, bathe in it, frolic if you like … and then get out. And go back in at any time, at any point. But, you don’t have to try to consume the entire river — it’s impossible and frankly a waste of time in my eyes.

Although written in 2008 before Twitter entered the mainstream, Babauta’s advice still applies today. It’s also an example of Babauta’s excellent vision, as he expected Twitter would replace RSS feeds, which it largely has done.

You might also like: Leo Babauta’s Great Twitter Experiment.

Social Media and Storytelling Part 1: Why Storytelling? (HootSuite)

Author: Cameron Uganec

What makes it unique?: This article doesn’t just tell you why stories matter; it shows you – with examples of great stories.

Our favorite quote:

As storytellers we need to answer these questions. Who is the hero? What is the plot? What is the setting? And, a scary thing for some marketers, what’s the conflict? If you’re telling a story, there’s always a conflict. It’s not always unicorns and rainbows and the hyperbole that lazy marketers often resort to.

Cameron Uganec rightly points out that we can no longer “push” marketing messages out to a captive audience. Instead, we have to “pull” an audience in using a great story.

Check out part 3 of Cameron’s six-part series to find out the psychology behind why people share stories.

The Ideal Length of Everything Online, Backed by Research (buffer)

Author: Kevan Lee

What makes it unique?: The depth of research and the graphics illustrating every point.

Our favorite quote:

Solid research exists to show the value of writing, tweeting, and posting at certain lengths.

You want the have the most possible impact online, right? Taking that as a given, what’s the ideal length of a Tweet, a Facebook update, a headline, an email subject line, and a video presentation? Kevan Lee has scouted out the research and reveals all in this article.

Want to know how Buffer dug up all this juicy goodness? Then check out their post How We Research: A Look Inside the Buffer Blog Process.

17 Twitter Marketing Tips From the Pros (Social Media Examiner)

Author: Cindy King

What makes it unique?: Not everyone interviewed for this article is a social media big gun, so the tips are relevant whatever the size of your Twitter following.

Our favorite quote:

One way to get more efficient about using Twitter and other tools is to sit down with someone younger than you and ask him or her for a front-lines tutorial.

Cindy King reached out to 17 of Twitter’s pro users to find out their top Twitter tips. In every one of the tips, you’ll learn something about how you can improve your Twitter presence.

See also: 10 Social Media Tips to Enhance Your Marketing, From the Pros.

How Coca-Cola uses Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+ (Econsultancy)

Author: David Moth

What makes it unique?: This is a deep dive into how a specific brand uses social media.

Our favorite quote:

Coca-Cola is one of those instantly recognizable brands that would rake in fans and followers without even trying, so it’s to its credit that it has active accounts across the social web.

Find out the pros and cons of Coca-Cola’s approach to using the four big players in the world of social networking. Of course, few businesses have Coke’s marketing budget, but we can all learn from their example.

For more ideas for your social strategy, Econsultancy has similar studies on Red Bull, Walmart, Cadbury, McDonald’s, Microsoft, Starbucks and Nike.

Creative Fire

So you’re all burned out of ideas?

Keep pushing, and you’ll find you’ve got more inside you than you believed possible. As William James once said:

Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they’ve got a second.

How can you get fired up again? What can you do to find your second wind?

1. Make It Into a Game

So you need to create content on a particular topic, but you feel like everything’s been written before?

Then come at it from a new angle. *”But I don’t have an angle!”*

You don’t need to find the angle. Let someone (or something) else find it for you.

Head over to the random idea generator. It’ll give you a word or a symbol. You can use this as your jumping off point. See, now you’ve got an angle.

Easier than you thought, right?

2. Head Outdoors

Artificial light boosts the levels of the hormone cortisol in your body.

Cortisol causes stress.

When you’re blocked for ideas, it’s stressful. And a stressed mind is a blocked mind. It’s a downward spiral.

Only by backing off can you release your creative flow. A really simple way of doing this is heading outside. If you’re stuck in an office, at least head over to a window for some natural light.

The other great thing about getting outside is that you’ll move your body. Exercise, like natural light, helps to encourage feel-good hormones. The better you feel, the easier you’ll find it to be creative.

3. Treat Your Obstacles as Puzzles

Instead of looking at your block as a problem, see it as a puzzle to be solved. It’s showing you the way forward. As Ryan Holiday puts it, “the obstacle is the way.”

In other words, keep fighting! You’ll only discover what you’re capable of if you refuse to let your obstacles defeat you. Here’s Ryan Holiday again:

The struggle against an obstacle inevitably propels the fighter to a new level of functioning. The extent of the struggle determines the extent of the growth. The obstacle is an advantage, not adversity. The enemy is any perception that prevents us from seeing this.

Of all the possible strategies for dealings with difficulties, this is the one you can always use. Everything can be flipped, seen with this kind of gaze: a piercing look that ignores the package and sees only the gift.

How Do You Deal with Creative Blocks?

Do you back off? Let them defeat you? Or do you keep pushing? What have you found is the best way through (or around) your blocks?

Slide Share Presentation

You can learn a ton from sneaking a peek at other people’s presentations. And SlideShare is the place to do that.

We snuck in to find you the best SlideShares on social media and content marketing – some from big hitters and some special finds from lesser-known bloggers.

Enjoy!

50 Powerful Statistics About Tech Mega Trends Affecting Every Business

Created by: Vala Afshar

Key takeaways include the fact that Americans spend 2.7 hours a day socializing on mobile devices and that YouTube reaches more 18-34-year-old Americans than any cable network. Also, check out slide 21 for a mind-blowing LinkedIn stat.

If you enjoyed this, you might also like: 100 Must Follow on Twitter – 2014.

How to Tell Your Story in 2014 (The right way)

Created by: Gary Vaynerchuk

A wise man once said: “The shortest distance between a human being and truth is a story.” Vaynerchuk builds on this wisdom and shows the best way to tell your business story in 2014. How does he do it? Through a story. Brilliant.

A Dr. Seuss-Inspired Guide to Twitter

Created by: Hootsuite

With quirky illustrations and rhymes to match, this Seuss-esque slideshow is both an excellent guide to getting started on Twitter and an example of how to create imaginative content. Enjoy!

You may also like: The Number One Mistake Everybody Makes on Twitter by Gary Vaynerchuk.

14 B2B Marketing + Social Media Stats for 2014

Created by: Lauren Gray

Did you know that 45% of B2B marketers have gained a client through LinkedIn? And that 91% of B2B marketers are using content marketing? Check out the slides for 12 more stunning stats about how marketers us social media.

Content Marketing Lessons from Kevin Spacey

Created by: Content Marketing Institute

If you’re a House of Cards fan or you enjoy a good Spacey movie, then you’ll love this SlideShare featuring Kevin Spacey quotes and how they apply to content marketers.

Creating a Social Media Strategy

Created by: Debra Askanase

This SlideShare guides you step-by-step through developing a social media strategy. You’ll discover how to learn from your competitors, how to create an effective social media funnel, and the major components of an effective social strategy.

13 Killer Social Media Statistics from 2013

Created by: Adam Vincenzini

Our favorite stat from this SlideShare? Over a quarter (27%) of online time is spent on social media – more than anything else. It’s also good to know that your first three tweets of the day are the most important, as engagement declines after three tweets.

If you enjoyed this, you might also like: 14 Social Media Trends for 2014, also by Adam Vincenzini.

10 Tips For Marketing Your Business On Pinterest

Created by: Matt Siltala

Are you a mom? Then you’re 61% more likely to visit Pinterest than the average American. And get this: women are five times more likely to be on Pinterest than men, and women are responsible for 85% of consumer purchases. If you’re a B2C brand, what are you waiting for? Get on Pinterest! And check out this SlideShare for tips on getting started.

The Fundamentals of Blogging

Created by: HubSpot

Find out the basics of blogging – from creating a buyer persona to SEO to blog post formatting. Even experienced bloggers will enjoy the stats (check slide 36 to find out how frequently you should update your blog).

If you liked this, you’ll also enjoy: Blogging For Business: A Beginner’s Guide to Successful Blogging by Nikki Little.

A SlideShare about SlideShare

Created by: Rishma Kassam

Having seen all this awesome SlideShare content, are you tempted to create your own? Before you do, check out this SlideShare about SlideShare. You’ll discover whether SlideShare is right for you and pick up tips on how to make the most of the presentations you share.