As a small or mid-sized business, your marketing team is probably small, and you’ve probably got one or two people managing your social media accounts. Any social media manager will immediately tell you that juggling retweets, LinkedIn posts and Facebook photos without a system gets sloppy very quickly. Adding another person (say, one copywriter and one manager) opens up even more potential for missed connections: more services means more potential for scheduling errors. That said, there are many ways to ensure posts are created and published on time, every time.

Amy Noelle is the culinary genius behind Sugar Flower Cake Shop.  Sugar Flower Cake Shop creates unique special occasion and wedding cakes made from local and sustainable ingredients featuring realistic-looking flowers handmade from sugar.  We thought we'd ask her a few questions about how she's mastered social media for her business.  Here are some of her "slices" of advice: When do you like to post? How often do you post? I like to post when I actually have something to say.  The timing varies, though.  We are more active on the weekends as that is when our cakes are ready for their close-ups.  I recently learned a handy-dandy trick from Andrew and Pooja at Spark Growth Partners who dazzled me with the ability to schedule Facebook posts.  I just started this today and have posts ready for the rest of the week!!  Super excited that I don't have to remember to put super important posts out there when I know I'm going to be busier in the shop. What are your favorite blogs? Sugar Flower Cake Shop has a great relationship with Martha Stewart Weddings, so I'm always tuned into that blog.  We follow a ton of wedding industry professionals to see what they are up to.  My favorite non-wedding blogs are from NYC Business Solutions (helping to keep me on track as a business owner) and Urban Simplicity (helping to keep my stuff, and sometimes my brain, organized!)

By Pooja Desai Patel http://nymag.com/nymag/letters/hurricane-sandy-editors-letter-2012-11/?mid=twitter_nymagThe Spark Growth team would like to extend our thoughts and prayers to the survivors and victims of Hurricane Sandy. Much of our NY team was directly impacted by the storm but thankfully, we are all unharmed and now fully with power. It is amazing to see how cities and towns have come together during this challenging time. We want to personally thank the tireless and heroic first responders, fire-fighters, medical staff, volunteers, emergency care teams, neighbors, friends, families, and countless others for their love and support. The majority of us prepped for Sandy based on the information that we saw in the news via our televisions and computers. But, with the widespread power outages and thus, the lack of access to pertinent information, what are the best ways to stay connected during a massive storm like Sandy? For most of us, the primary source for information was our smart phones, for as long as the battery and internet lasted. While some cell towers were down and out, many were still functioning. Facebook and Twitter were the two main information hubs that people were using to get and send updates. Here are a few tips for all cities, towns, and news stations to keep their residents and viewers informed before, during, and after the storm:

The people over at Social Maximizer wrote an interesting article on Twitter Hashtags and how they can be useful for businesses.  Hashtags, expressed with a "#" symbol before a word, are ways to group your tweets with others' and get them discovered quickly and by more people.  For brands, this allows you to create buzz around a specific topic that can bring traffic to your website and social media platforms, ultimately leading to the potential of more sales.  Find out the why and how after the jump.

The Next Web recently posted in it's Social Media section an article about a way for companies to use Instagram more effectively.  Companies have been jumping on the IG bandwagon at an astounding rate, realizing the photo-social media platform has tremendous potential to reach consumers.  Instagram recently overtook Twitter in daily mobile views, a huge milestone for the fairly new app.  But while these companies realize Instagram's potential, they haven't quite been able to leverage the program properly.  How do you keep track of what people are capturing and sharing about your company? And how do you show off all those great prints which users have uploaded of their own accord? This is where Nitrogram steps in. How it Works Anyone with an Instagram account can can sign and try Nitrogram for free. Once you’ve landed on the homepage, you can then add any...