Tag Archives: social media

Every year is a little crazy on social, and 2017 has been no different for Facebook. From now up until Christmas, we will try to bring predictions as to what to expect in 2018 for other platforms, given what we have seen this year, and even now.

As communication technology advances and becomes more complicated, augmented reality is making strides forward, and Facebook being at the front of the race. As Mark Zuckerberg even stated on his personal page not long ago, his company is spending plenty of its time on developing this technology further, because it could be at the forefront of our society by 2020 (see Oculus). As we are seeing now, video is the most popular content form and we are evolving from it. While text and photo content is still very prominent, how relevant will it be in the future?

Now, we are talking about seeing a cartoon version of your friends and even family by just wearing a headset! At the rate virtual reality is developing, we soon won’t even need to bother being physically around them.

We have discussed messenger’s evolution and use in a recent post on our Facebook page. It has integrated with PayPal, allowing transactions and payments to be made through a conversation and a couple of clicks. Facebook is trying to turn Messenger into an e-commerce bot (because new trends), but it is not yet a very popular decision with most of its users, because we simple want to use Messenger to… speak to our friends!

In addition to “e-commerce”, paid ads are becoming more common and necessary for businesses to promote themselves, and several features are being added for all types of transactions facilitators to take place. Businesses will be able to focus a new kind of effort on Facebook as a marketplace rather than just a social media platform to advertise in.

This will not only apply to Europe and North America. Facebook intends to make all these features available worldwide, and will want to expand and innovate in ways that we never thought would be possible five years ago.

 

 

 

As we have mentioned many times before in previous blogs, social media is important and an expected activity by almost every brand in the market. The biggest problem here is managing the brands on all the platforms they are present in, and where to dedicate the most time to.

Social media is the modern communication channel and also drives revenue when used really well.

When we look at the retail industry, which is changing drastically, social media still plays a big role, especially when your friends are involved with reviews of merchandise they have bought at the store. Even then, with e-commerce emerging, brands are using social to encourage customers to purchase online. We’ll get to this in a minute.

It seems that websites have been making an important comeback lately, especially that they can now be optimized for mobile, and brands should not forget to include links to social as well as testimonials on social on their website. If businesses see many positive tweets or Instagram posts about their brand, they’ll make sure to show it on their website as a means of saying “Hey, we’re not the only ones who think our products are good – they do too!” That then can influence an online purchase. Although influencers are not always trusted, having customers use a specific hashtag to express their thoughts is much more authentic and trusted.

Social media is a powerful engagement tool, for users to communicate with one another and brands to communicate with current and potential customers.

As mentioned in the last blog, paid ads are becoming more expensive and not necessarily reaching more people. Authentic, organic content that is boosted for a couple of dollars can be helpful, but you need to show the public that you are curating that content. The same goes for consumer-generated content.

This week’s blog is set to discuss a new and emerging trend in social media marketing, resulting from the unfortunate change of algorithms with social networks, preventing Facebook pages (especially) from getting the organic reach they want on their posts. Welcome to “growth hacking“!

Growth hacking has become a new concept in the last year or so that businesses are trying to use to ‘cheat’ the system and find new ways to grow their social media accounts to get conversions. Before paid ads and post boosts became common, it was easy to reach all of your following every time you posted something. Now, you’d be lucky to reach half organically. These paid options want to guarantee a bigger reach if you show the money, but we’re unsure how well it really works in terms of ROI.

 

1. Money for Likes

Whether on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, businesses and personal brands are now spending money to look like they have bigger numbers supporting them. However, these new followers and likes are not necessarily genuine and; going through a list of likes can see you being followed by strange looking accounts.

Buying yourself a fake following can immediately destroy your credibility after having spent so much time and effort building it initially, so why be so desperate to hurt your budget for a bigger number? If you are caught doing that, you can also get punished by the main networks.

Data insights are crucial to the strategy a business takes with social, and fake data will ruin all important metrics which will be hard to fix later on. Your business will likely respect you more if you conduct digital affairs in an honest manner. Is cheating morally and financially really worth it?

2. Team Instagram

There is a somewhat witty way to ‘cheat’ on Instagram, without spending money or feeling guilty of looking good. IG’s algorithms work in a way where engagement is key to success. So in this case, groups of people all agree to support each other’s pages by constantly liking and commenting on photos. Team effort can eventually lead to victory.

But here comes the problem. This means only a specific network of people are showing you love, while millions of others probably aren’t aware of what’s going on, or these posts won’t be visible to them, so the reach is again limited, and not great for metrics.

3. Twitter Favourites

Twitter has seen an interesting change lately, where just like Facebook, tweet likes of accounts you don’t even follow appear on your news feed, simply because someone else you follow liked that tweet. Half of newsfeeds are filled up with that, and the best tweets can get additional likes and retweets from many other accounts that don’t follow them. Twitter’s algorithms fortunately still favour organic reach, which is a huge plus for everyone involved and should make the most of it while this system is still around.

The only downside to this is ultimately the financial side, as it may not count for much at the end if businesses aren’t selling products/services at the end of it.

Play by the rules of the game, even if they don’t necessarily appeal to you. Cheat and you’re in trouble if you get caught!

Modern day content marketing means businesses and personal brands need to publish as much quality content as possible to stand out, and that generally leads to an overload of content on social media and the internet. It is much harder to get noticed unless quality meets quantity.

So what are some ways for you to make your articles go viral?

1) An intriguing title

Let’s face it – human beings do not have much patience with content these days, so you’d be silly to think every article gets clicked on. Want to capture attention? The title needs to be very captivating, and about a subject the user can relate to, in order to get your click.

 

2) Visuals

Graphics are going to become more and more popular. The human eye generally prefers something colorful to look at, and written content alone doesn’t always attract attention, but visuals do! Make it a habit to include them in the featured image and in the article as well.

3) Release

Once the article has been published on your website, make sure it’s also a headline act in all the social media feeds you use. When it comes to Twitter, tweet it out as many times using different hashtags and messages, all relating to the same story. These can be scheduled or done spontaneously.

4) Pay up?

Because of social media’s changing algorithms, businesses have a lot less joy reaching out to all their followers for free. It’s almost necessary to spend money if you want any kind of content to reach in the hundreds if not thousands of users. If you feel your article hasn’t received the traction it deserves, sometimes spending between $5 and $10 to ‘boost’ the post could be key in getting results.

Besides video and visuals, writing is still a fundamental aspect of online marketing, and given the competitive nature of social media and SEO for organic reach, the quality of writing only needs to get better for everyone involved in this industry. What are some of the ways the copywriting competition can be taken up a notch?

1. As they say, you cannot please everyone! Your page has a following and a target market, so it is best to consistently please the audience that already appreciates you, and tailor your content to elicit a reaction only from them. You can please hundreds and thousands, but everybody? It’s hard!

2. We understand you want to be creative and witty with your words, but often, you have to pretend a 10 year old is reading this and they need to understand it from the first glance. Keep it simple, concise, and to the point. Trying too hard to be cool will only backfire.

3. We are going through a phase where disagreements on anything are more common than not. If you’re going to be ‘politically incorrect’, make sure there is evidence to back up your claim. You don’t want to lose your audience over something controversial.

4. In any kind of writing, the first and last paragraphs are the ones that will stick the most with your readers, so make sure they are the best parts of the copy. In many cases, a ‘right hook‘ will be thrown to boost sales, and you’d want a good conversion rate.

5. Editing is more important than writing. The first draft will never be usually the published version. If you are struggling with content, write until you’re out of ideas, and seek help from your team in the process. The editing part becomes more important because you are just polishing the initial ideas into something more tangible. You’ll find yourself removing more words than you know, but nothing to feel bad about.

6. To complement the above point, everyone may have a different way of editing their articles, and as they also say, ‘You do you’.

 

7. And to complement #5 and #6, double and triple check everything you have written. It’s better to publish late because of editing time than publish early with some small but horrible mistakes. Once it’s online, you can sometimes never take it back. Save yourself some blushes and proofread as much as you need to!

Please feel free to contact us if you have any more questions on copywriting!

Managing social media pages and running social media campaigns are not quite the same thing. What we do as an agency is the former, and upon client request we would run a campaign that would last a short while. Campaigns that big brands have undertaken can teach everyone, including us, how to take it to the next level. By writing this blog, we are also educating ourselves!

Eurostar, with the help of an agency, had created a campaign through Instagram with about 200 images and animated videos. They even created a separate account with the name of the campaign (La Vie on Board), and attempted to dazzle followers with visuals as well as subtly offering special ticket prices to destinations in London and Paris.

Their campaign was successful because they created something so unique within an existing platform. They managed an additional following as well as plenty of engagement.

Music.ly is an emerging platform that is generating plenty of buzz, although it’s not for everyone. If you are into music and make your own videos, hop on to it NOW.

Coca Cola is known for its tasty beverages, but even more for it’s amazing marketing campaigns. Following up on ‘Share the coke’, they had started a new campaign in China, which they then brought into the US. Their campaign was called “Share a Coke and a song”, where they targeted music.ly as the main campaign platform and got some famous artists to collaborate. A contest was hosted which invited their followers to create music videos with the songs on the bottles and share them on Musical.ly.

That, too, went very well! 900,000 new music videos and over 100 million views and a trendy new hashtag, #ShareaCoke . Coca Cola specifically wanted to target teenagers passionate about music, and there was a platform exactly for that!

Are you a Taco fan? If yes, you’ll enjoy this segment of the blog. Taco Bell and an LA Agency partnered up to create…. a taco emoji! This was a Twitter campaign that was based on audience engagement with emojis, and Taco Bell would respond with a GIFs whenever they got a tweet. However, to keep up with demand, TB automated the responses, but the campaign was very successful too.

 

 

What does a brand do when a competitor sponsors an event they want to get their name into? AirBnb had to get creative around its limits around the Oscars, which in a way turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Their hashtag #LiveInTheMovies encouraged followers to suggest what movie they would have liked to be in during that weekend. AirBnb was NOT even allowed to talk about the Oscars.

Things worked out just fine for the big brand and showed that there is always a way to think outside the box when limitations are imposed.

These stories will carry on over the next couple of weeks. If there’s a social media campaign that recently caught your attention, feel free to share it in the comments! We have already learned so much from this! 🙂

This weeks’ blog is shorter than usual but aims to discuss why it’s important to keep a brand coherent across social platforms and how to do it. The most popular networks allow people and brands to communicate in different ways, but how do they stay true to their voice?

1. Consistent look

This is supposed to be the easiest one to execute because it is literally and only about design! LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter allow a profile picture as well as a cover photo. The key is to keep them all the same across all three. As for Instagram, the profile picture should be the same. You easily want to be recognized wherever users try to find you.

2. Authenticity

With so many trends on social emerging nowadays, it’s easy for brands to drift off from who they are and the type of messages they communicate. It can completely backfire if they go off course so it’s best to have a certain style for all means of communication. You don’t need to comment on all trends and attempt humour/sarcasm especially when it could go very wrong.

3. Who’s your audience?

You should know who you are communicating to, and how (and how often) these people respond to your posts on social.

4. Use a dashboard

Like we mentioned in the e-commerce article, monitoring all accounts through a third-party website can be very helpful in coordinating everything. It can save alot of time and potential gaffes. Hootsuite is one of the most popular ones around, but there are alternatives you can use.

 

2017 has been showing us that social media is mainly all about major news, animal and baby photos, as well as celebrity gossip. Social media also helps businesses grow online through branding and engagement with the many people that use social. However, this blog will focus on the business side of things, e-commerce.

E-commerce businesses are so focused on what they do that they forget the need to engage with their community through social. Especially in a time where organic reach is declining and competition is fierce, ignoring active behaviour on social media can be detrimental to sales.

1. Why does social media even matter?

As a business owner, it’s easy to be completely distracted by all the other responsibilities that are associated with e-commerce, such as sales, inventory, finances, orders, customer service, and the rest.

According to the Pew Research Center report on mobile and social media usage:

– 72% of online adults are Facebook users, amounting to 62% of all American adults.

– 31% of online adults use Pinterest (up from 15% in 2012), and 28% use Instagram (up from 13% in 2012).

– 59% of Instagram users are on the platform daily, including 35% who visit several times a day. This 59% figure reflects a 10-point increase from September 2014 when 49% of Instagram users reported visiting the site on a daily basis.

– 70% of Facebook users log on daily, including 43% who do so several times a day.

Social media will likely never go away, even if it fades a tiny bit. It is the era we live in, whether in a personal or business capacity. The more people gain access to internet and a smartphone, the more accounts are going to get opened. However, the networks are making advertising on their sites slightly more complicated, but that’s for another time.

Business owners are making a mistake by not investing on social media – missed opportunities with many potential customers, especially with a very good product or service.

2. Platform choosing

Being an e-commerce business owner means you may not be very familiar with using social media for business purposes. The problem that these businesses have is jump on every platform to try and develop a presence in. It is not necessarily a good idea!

Unless you have a team managing social media presence, being consistent alone, on all platforms, is going to be very difficult. Pick your networks wisely so that you save time and dedicate your effort for a couple of platforms only. Your customers will also only be using a couple of platforms, so make sure you post content where they can see it.

At the end of the day, you just want to make sure you reach current and potential customers, who will also play their part in helping your business grow.

3. Building the presence

Once you have started setting up your business accounts on social, you need to figure out how to build the presence – this is done through the content, both written and visual, as well as the brand voice. If you have a team managing the pages, make sure you have set policies on what you’d want, otherwise giving an individual too much power can take you in a direction different to the one you desire.

The first weeks of starting social media accounts will keep you busy, so get the most out of it while you’re building a community.

4. Content type

When a new business begins sharing content on social media, they need to be aware of what they are trying to achieve with each message. We have mentioned in previous blogs that making the content all about your products and services will push people away and not get you the clients you need.

The objective with social media is to bring value to the followers through education and entertainment. This does not mean you should not promote the business itself – it should be minimal. The content is meant to be more about the public than about you.

5. Community management

This is becoming the most important part of social media. The best thing any kind of business can do is engage with the public consistently. It shows a human side to the brand and people will appreciate it more. Magic won’t happen overnight, but as long as you are consistently good, your efforts will be rewarded eventually! Do not get discouraged.

 

6. Third-party tools

These help make social media management easier, but are not necessary. They are useful to track metrics for the website as well as social media insights, as well as scheduling posts in advance.

“If you want to stay in the game, you have to participate.

If you want to win the game, you have to dominate.”

We have been posting quite often about video marketing this year, whether live or edited. This is because we think it has become so important in the world of social media, especially for brands who need to have an increase of traffic to their pages and websites. Videos are the key entertainer these days, and it doesn’t take a university degree or rocket science to be able to film and edit something good! Almost anyone can do it…

1) Script it. Plan it

They don’t all need to be spontaneous. The best videos are often humorous and emotional ones – but with some prior planning. A well thought-out short video can go a long way for a brand.

2) Camera accessories

Using just your hands to keep control of the camera may not have the best outcome. If you are shooting something professional, a tripod is highly recommended. A good quality video will keep the audience hooked.

3) Audio

A viewer will not be best pleased if they can’t hear everything in the video. External microphones can be just as important as the internal ones.

 

4) Lighting

If you are shooting something informal from your smartphone, make sure it’s not in a dark place, because the image will not appear clearly. This situation would be easier to manage indoors than outdoors.

5) Aim for the target platform

Every social media platform has different attributes for video. Obviously, YouTube can always be the best place, due to time allowed amongst other things. Facebook has become extremely video-friendly so almost any video footage would work well. Instagram, Twitter and especially Snapchat are still in a world of their own; so before you start filming, know exactly what you’re filming for!

6) Subtitles?

That’s an interesting one. Many people nowadays watch videos while they’re at work, and can’t turn up the volume – and they especially can’t wait until they get home to watch it! 85% of videos on social media are watched without sound, so subtitles are key! (and will be appreciated)

 

7) Long or short?

As said before, attention span and patience are at a low these days, so unless it’s a really compelling videos that viewers can’t take their eyes off, make it long. Otherwise, short and sweet please!

When we pitch to SMEs to work on their social media accounts, we usually take into account that like many other businesses, they wouldn’t want to spent plenty of money on their social media marketing. When they set their monthly/yearly budgets, they believe to have more important things to take into account, but know the necessity of setting money aside to hire an agency or independent marketer. So what are things businesses could take into account when SMM budget planning?

 

 

1) Targets

What are the objectives? And who is the audience? We assume that the bigger the goals, the bigger the cost for the marketing? Some businesses value online presence less than others, depending on priorities.

2) Content

What kind of content will you expect from the person or agency you outsource it to? The content is exactly what you pay for, so make sure the demands are relative to the costs. You must bear in mind that graphic design and video editing can be time consuming.

3) Platform

Amidst all the talk of organic reach becoming more obsolete and having to start paying for reach, you need to decide where your audience is most active and present, to share your content on said platform. There are always a number of choices, but not all necessary. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, YouTube – all interesting places.

 

 

4) Analytics

At the end of each week or month, you want to know how the marketing is performing. This can give you the chance to make adjustments that will either increase or cut costs, and the softwares themselves may not be free of charge.