Instagrammers are the best buyers : how to use it to your advantage

The latest research is in, and with a surprising result: it found that people on Instagram love to shop. More than any other social media site, Instagrammers showed a distinct trend for liking brands, making purchases, and overall using the site to engage with businesses. And not only that, but the number of Instagram users has jumped from 200 million to 300 million in just nine months, well over the number of those on Twitter.

This has caused a massive movement of companies now turning to the picture-editing site for their marketing campaigns. If you’re like the crowd and want to take advantage of this perfect marketing opportunity, read on: we’ve put together the facts, so you know how to best use this handy trend to your advantage.

 

Instagrammers Are Young

Instagram may be overlooked by so many marketers simply because the site is primarily common among young people. One study even found that 62% of teens aged 11 to 16, and 44% of those in their 20’s, had an Instagram account. In contrast, only 18% of those aged between 45 and 60 had even used the site before.

So what does this mean? It means that when you market with Instagram, you’ll be most successful if your target audience is the younger generation. Try marketing with an emphasis on the latest trends, music, or cultural references that teens or 20-somethings can relate to. Also keep in mind why there are so many young adults on Instagram: unlike Facebook, this social media site lets them get away from their parents (an overwhelming amount of whom now flock to Facebook!). If you are aware of this mindset of your audience, you’ll be more likely to get the interaction you want from marketing with Instagram.

 

Instagrammers Engage More

While those on Facebook are mostly there to connect with friends and family, people who use Instagram are quite the opposite. Unlike any other social media site, Instagrammers frequently like, share, or re-gram (think retweet) content. This means that not only are Instagram users more likely to follow your brand’s account, but they’re also more likely to interact with it. One study even found that for every 100 interactions on Instagram, there are only 2 or 3 interactions on Facebook, and even less on Twitter.

To use this to your advantage: engage with your Instagram audience as much as you can. In a huge contrast to Facebook, they have found that Instagram users even feel flattered if you interact with them on the site. Create a relevant, highly interactive account, and you’ll market to a bigger audience. But there’s also a theory that Instagram users only engage because it’s a relatively new platform: so make sure to make an impact on the site before it suffers a similar fate as Twitter!

 

Instagrammers Like to Shop

And the reason we’re all here: people on Instagram are the best buyers on the internet. They like to share product posts with their friends, comment on posts with their consumer opinion, and shop around for future purchase ideas. One study in particular, involving 16,000 Instagram users, found that 70% of them had searched for a brand’s account on the site. Which proves: if you aren’t on Instagram, you’re probably missing out!

So how to use these findings to your advantage? While a certain amount of Instagrammers do follow a brand because they truly are fond of it, a great number of people follow for the perks, sales, and giveaways. If you can make following you worthwhile from a consumer perspective, you’ll have the marketing audience you crave!

So  now you know that Instagrammers are the best buyers – let us know your action plan!

 

 

You can schedule posts on Instagram easily – here is how!

schedule your Instagram posts

The Instagram Generation. Whether you view it as a complement or not is up to you. Nevertheless, it doesn’t really change the fact that Instgram has become a large part of most people’s lives. Yes, there are actually a small minority of individuals who does not use this app but let’s focus on the majority here. Instagram has always been a great way to document or share parts of your life to the world. It’s like being a celebrity with you bringing along a built-in cameraman on your phone. It would be great if you can document everything in real time but let’s face it, the world is not perfect and a lot of factors can hinder you. Therefore, we opt for the next best thing.  Scheduling. In fact, here are some awesome tools to aid you if you’re willing to invest and fully maximize your Instagram experience – learn how to schedule posts on Instagram.

Tool #1: The Adviser (Takeoff)

Remember the Unfollow app? Well, this particular app is actually part of it. Okay, we all know that this thing is a tool for scheduling. Granted that it doesn’t post things for you and that it is not equipped with the magic of photo editing, it does give you lots of nice hashtag suggestions as well as tips on what time is a good time to post your photos for your followers.

But what of the photo editing? I need to edit my photos. Worry not, it has a compensation of allowing you to open it on Instagram or a different photo editor.

See, it is really easy to use and allows you to use multiple Instagram accounts under it was well as team members (if you have any, of course). What’s more, it’s free but if you want to go premium the price can go up as high as $9.99 and more.

Tool #2: The Social Butterfly (Instapult)

One notable feature on this tool is that it can invite other administrators to post giving you a chance to connect to more people as well as manage multiple accounts if you’re the type that likes to post things for a specified audience.

It only does single-image upload but it comes with photo editing features as well. The sign up is free with a weeklong trial period and a monthly maintenance fee of $12. It also offers a premium package.

Tool #3: The Pacemaker (ScheduGram)

This tool is really handy for those who have multiple accounts and seek to pace and organize themselves to avoid mistakes when posting.

In addition, aside from scheduling its features also consist of photo editing such as cropping, retouches and effects once you upload the image. After giving your image the most desired pizzazz, you can go on to the next step which is the scheduling. You’ll eventually receive an email notifying and requesting permission to post the photo.

This baby costs about $13 per month with a seven days free trial.

Tool #4: The Reminder (Latergramme)

Did you ever have that post you wanted to post but forgot to post it? Or even worse, that post which you regretted posting and allowing public eyes to see?

Well, this tool might just be the one for you because despite its ability to schedule and organize your photos from both a browser and a mobile iSO app, it cannot post the photos itself and rather just reminds you that you need to post a certain photo at a certain time.

For this, you have a free sign up with a fee of $9.50 per month with premium and business accounts available if you’re interested.

There you go, some of the best Instragram scheduling tools the technological deities have to offer. Granted some of these are bit pricy but let me just me remind you how great these tools are for traveling, conferences, strong bouts of creative boredom and many more. Enjoy.

Hashtag campaigns – make it awesome, not silly

Hashtag campaigns

Having gained enormous popularity on Twitter in recent years, hashtag campaigns are now being adopted by virtually all major social media outlets. And in the world of content marketing and promotion, hashtags can be a goldmine for promoting products, events, or even an entire barnd. But beware – your choice of hashtag can very quickly and easily make or break your company’s image. However, when done right, successful hashtag campaigns are well worth the time, effort, and money that you choose to spend. Check out the following tips and tricks for creating a winning hashtag campaign:

The simpler, the better

Are thousands of Twitter users going to remember a hashtag like #comebybigbobsburgersforafreeburgerandshakeeverytuesday, let alone bother to type it into their own posts? Would you? If you said no, you aren’t alone. People are, in general, fairly lazy. So remember to keep the hashtag that you choose for your hashtag campaign short, simple, and logical. If you’ve created a brief but catchy hashtag, but it makes no sense in relation to the product, business, or event that you are trying to promote, it’s time to head back to the old drawing board for another try.

Figure out what already interests them

Is there a certain product that keeps popping up in your audience members’ tweets and conversations? Do many people in your target audience feel strongly about a certain project, issue, or cause? Take these popular ideas and concerns and incorporate them into your hashtag campaign, thus using your audience’s own interests to engage them in a more personal, reciprocal type of communication. For example, do people who tweet favorably about your company’s new dye-free detergent also often tweet about their allergies? If so, find a way to connect their allergy problems to your hashtag campaign.

Encourage audience participation

If there is one thing people love to do on social media, it is voicing their opinions about every topic imaginable. You can use this compulsion to your advantage by inviting and encouraging your audience to voice their relevant opinions and experiences on the topic you have chosen for your hashtag campaign. For instance, if your new product is a device to ensure the safe sleeping position of small infants, encourage audience members to upload photos of their own sleeping babies, along with your chosen hashtag. Just remember to also engage participants in two-way conversation, by commenting on photos and responding to questions or comments about your product within as short a timeframe as possible, in order to keep your campaign’s momentum up.

Break down the barriers

If your hashtag campaign involves some type of contest, make your contest entry process as easy as possible for your audience. However, you should keep in mind that the overall purpose of the contest is to benefit your business or event by extending its reach on social media outlets, resulting in both an increase in exposure and active followers. A very simple way to make everyone happy is by making the conditions for contest entry mutually beneficial. For example, by following you on Twitter, or liking your Facebook page, and then commenting with their own photos or opinions and adding your chosen hashtag, audience members aren’t asked to devote too much time or effort to entering the contest. Likewise, your business or event page/profile, as well as your hashtag campaign, enjoy exponential increases in traffic and audience engagement.

Keep it real

People can generally tell the difference between forced or contrived marketing campaigns and more genuine types of audience engagement. You want your hashtag campaign to be in the latter category. One way to do this is by showcasing real social media users and their personal, unique interactions with your brand and/or hashtag campaign. For instance, say that your business is a car dealership, and you are running a contest to win a new car alongside your hashtag campaign. One way to give your hashtag campaign a genuine feel is to create a social media landing page, which features images of participants in your contest next to their old, broken-down vehicles and challenges new entrants to find even more new and unique ways to incorporate your chosen hashtag into their photos.

Utilize traditional media sources

Perhaps the best way to utilize traditional media sources in the case of hashtag campaigns would be to incorporate information about your campaign, as well as a call to action, into a television commercial or a billboard. How big or small you choose to go is constrained only by your budget, but even small businesses can benefit greatly from this strategy. Like they say, sometimes you have to spend money to make money. By prominently featuring your hashtag, website/social media page address, and campaign details in a way that grabs viewers’ attention, you are sure to boost interest in your campaign and traffic to your page.

Have we left out a great hashtag campaign idea that helped take your business to the next level? We would love for you to share your experience with us!

Instagram engagement: What really works?

Instagram engagement What really works

Photographs, infographics, and other types of visual content seem to be the latest trend in social media marketing, which is great because they are a lot of fun to create.However, you can’t post just any old picture to Instagram and expect to become an overnight sensation. Gaining followers and getting likes and comments on Instagram often proves just as difficult as it is on any other social media network. In this article, we provide you with 8 tips that will help you get the most out of your Instagram posts, based on the recent research conducted by Dan Zarrella of HubSpot. So waht really works for better Instagram Engagement?

  1. Ask and you’ll receive

Although this tactic may be considered rude or desperate on other social media networks, asking your audience for exactly what you want on Instagram is not only considered acceptable, it also really works! If you want people to like your image or comment on it, let them know. Statistics show that, on images that specifically include the word “like” in their caption, the rate of likes can increase as much as 89 percent. Similarly, images that included the word “comment” in their caption saw an astounding 2,194 percent increase in the number of comments, as opposed to the number of comments on images where the direction to comment was not included.

  1. Be creative, but don’t go overboard

Unless you are a professional photographer, you should steer clear of using those nifty Instagram filters. You may think that filters make your images look more elaborate or professional, but your Instagram audience will most likely disagree. In fact, Instagram images with no filters have the highest number of likes-per-follower compared to those images with filters applied.

  1. Brighten their spirits

The degree of luminance, or what we think of as the brightness of an image, can also have an effect on your audience’s level of engagement. Research has shown that images that we would perceive as brighter, or which have higher luminance, can receive up to almost 600 percent more comments and likes on Instagram than darker images, even if they are of the same subject. These statistics make sense when we think of the tendency for people to often consider brighter images to be warmer, happier, and more inviting than darker images.

  1. Make use of hashtags

Instagram allows users to add as many as 30 hashtags to each post. With so many options, it is hardly surprising that images with more hashtags receive a higher number of likes and comments. In fact, it would appear, based on available data, that the more hashtags an image has, the more likes and comments it will receive. Remember, though, to use your hashtags wisely. You should avoid using irrelevant or “spammy” tags, or you may run the risk of being perceived as unprofessional.

  1. Keep your cool

Although many creative types might love the look of rich, vibrant colors, apparently the larger Instagram community does not agree. Comparisons of images have shown that photos with primarily cooler tones, like blues, grays, or greens, tend to receive more likes than images with warmer tones, such as reds, oranges, or yellows. Overall, it appears that the majority of Instagram users are more drawn to cooler, more calming shades.

  1. Tone it down

If you were asked whether more or less colorful photos would be more appealing to viewers, which would you choose? Did you pick the more colorful photos, assuming that the colors would catch viewers’ attention? This would seem to be a logical assumption, but on Instagram it is simply not the case. According to comparisons, images with lower saturation, rather than those with bright, vibrant colors, generally have up to 598 percent more comments and likes.

  1. The eyes have it

We, as human beings, have an innate preference for seeing the faces of others. This preference is evident from birth, and is no different among Instagram users. It has recently been shown that Instagram images portraying human faces receive roughly 35 percent more likes than images containing no human faces.

  1. Make your subjects stand out

You may be in love with beautiful landscapes and flowing lines, but it seems as though these types of images will not get you very far on Instagram. According to analyses of various types of images, those with more clearly defined subjects and more obvious edges garner more likes from Instagram users, as well as more comments. The difference in the number of likes can be up to 125 percent, as opposed to more cluttered-looking images with no discernible focal point.

Did this Instagram crash course help improve your audience engagement? What worked for you, and what didn’t? We would love for you to let us know!

Instagram finally added the edit option

Instagram finally added the edit option

Instagram blog just announced probably the most requested feauture since the rise of this uber-popular social media – the ability to back edit photo captions.

“We’ve added the ability to go back and edit captions on your posts. When you share a moment to Instagram, a typo shouldn’t get in the way. This has been one of the top requests that we’ve heard from the community, and we’re excited to finally bring it to you today. You’ll find a new “Edit” option in the menu beneath your image. Tap it to edit your caption”.

 

You can add a caption to a photo or video you’ve already shared or edit the caption you originally included. To add or edit your caption:

  1. Tap below your photo or video
  2. Tap Edit
  3. Edit or add your caption, then tap Done

Note: The word Edited will appear above captions that have been edited when you tap Comment on a post

You can add a location to a photo or video you’ve already shared or edit the location you originally included. To add or edit your location, first tap below your photo or video. Then tap Edit.

  • To add a location: Tap Add Location… and enter the location.
  • To edit a location: Tap the location name > Change Location. Then choose a new location or remove the location tag from your post.

 

 

The Psychology of Social Sharing – from coschedule.com

the psychology of social sharing

How do you get more people to share your content?

It’s a simple question that lacks a simple answer. But, perhaps it’s not as complicated as you think.

In a fascinating study conducted by The New York Times Customer Insight Group, it was discovered that there are five key reasons people decide to share something with others. This study on the psychology of sharing and word-of-mouth movements uncovers an important opportunity for marketers who want to do a better job growing their audience.

By understanding why people share, you can better assess your own content, and its ability to result in sustainable growth and traffic to your blog.

Coschedule.com put together a few insights and numbers that might surprise you.

Spoiler Alert: It’s All About Relationships

I’ve probably said it a gazillion times – people buy (and share content) from those that they know, like, and trust. Most sharing, as it turns out, is primarily dependent on the personal relationships of your readers. The data shows that the likelihood of your content being shared has more to do with your readers relationship to others than their relationship to you.

Read the full article on Coschedule.com

What to avoid when marketing on social media

What to avoid when marketing on social media

As we continue to make use of social media sites like Twitter, Facebook and Google +, we tend to get a bit overly excited and commit certain faux pas that would cost us not only followers but customers as well. In fact, here are some common mistakes that might surprise you.  We put together a small guide on what to to avoid when marketing on social media

My Auto-DM DON’T

Twitter users, I’m sure you’ve encountered this before and it most had probably become a large bane of your twittering experience, Automatic Direct Message (a.k.a. Auto-DM). After all, who doesn’t get irritated by constant irrelevant messaging that could only be described as spam?

A bit harsh? No, not really, a lot of people get annoyed by messages like these. It floods their inboxes and keeps them from their more important messages so please refrain from using this feature. In fact, if you’re going to use Auto-DM, it’s best to use it sparingly for your thank you notes.

Don’t be a stranger

Socializing may not be your real goal but it is part of it. One big mistake most people make is leaving their profile pictures blank which is totally not recommended if you’re aiming to expand your social reach. In fact, you are more than encouraged to place a company logo or a picture of your company spokesperson as your picture to give your company a face or an image.

Think about it, why should a person follow or entertain you if you don’t have an image to present. Why in the world would they follow an egg? Why should they circle you in? Should they even like this page?

Eggs and silhouette images are a big no. Don’t be so bashful that you can’t even post a simple company logo as your PP.

#Control thyself

Yes, that’s right. I’m talking about hashtags. As we most know, hashtags could now be applied to most popular forms of social media like Twitter, Facebook and Google +. And because of its popularity, people tend to abuse it – you know, #like #this #for #example.

Remember, too much of a good thing can be very bad and very annoying. So please moderate your hashtag usage, especially on Facebook considering hashtags in this site do nothing except for boosting a post’s aesthetic appeal.

NEVER forget to post the credits

Give credit, when credit is due. State your source. Don’t go on posting and tagging stuff you don’t own or did not make. Make standard disclaimers. Be always reminded of the standard etiquette and post the source link.

Why? It’s because you’re giving the impression of claiming the post as your own and obviously, people don’t like that. Not only is it offensive to the original creator but you could also lose client because of such careless nonchalance.

Maintain a proper atmosphere

When it comes to social media, people could easily ruin the atmosphere by butting into issues they shouldn’t have. While there’s nothing wrong with advocacy, some people have a tendency to get carried away and post or tweet something they might regret. It is one thing to be social and engage your followers in a discussion, but it’s a whole different matter if you decide to cross the line and get personal – and in the case of social media like Facebook and Twitter, too personal.

One common mistake is voicing very strong opinions that may offend some of your followers and spark a heated conversation which is not advisable. Granted that you are entitled to voice your opinions but do not forget, the customers should always come first. You are in the marketing world. Therefore, learn to place an appropriate distance and atmosphere when dealing with your followers and customers.

There we have it, the most common social media marketing faux pas to grace your computer screens. May you take these simple yet important warning to heart. With that, I bid you, good day.

Did you like our guide on what to to avoid when marketing on social media? Share your thoughts below!

 

 

Better social media covers – it’s easy!

better social media covers

We all know that first impressions are everything. In a business context, your clients’ first impressions of your product can be a driving factor in your conversion rate. But how can you quickly grab a potential client’s attention and make that first impression a positive, lasting one? By properly utilizing the first space that people see when they visit your business’s social media page- the cover photo. The following four tips will help you create stunning cover images that will draw new followers to your social media page and grow your profits.

1. Dimensions are crucial

A cover photo, which is the first thing people see when they visit your social media page, gives you the opportunity to make a positive initial impression on potential customers. However, even though cover images are completely customizable, nothing screams “lack of professionalism” like a cover image that is cut off, stretched and pixilated, or halfway hidden behind your profile image. When designing your cover image, it is imperative that you research the recommended dimensions for your cover images on each social media site you wish to utilize. Additionally, you need to know if another element of the page, such as a profile picture, will overlap the cover image or obscure it in any way.
– Facebook recommends that cover images be 851 x 315 pixels, but the minimum acceptable size is 339 x 150 pixels. Keep in mind that Facebook profile pictures will overlap the lower left corner of your cover photo and design your image accordingly.
-For Google+, cover photos need to be between the recommended 1080 x 608 pixels and the maximum 2120 x 1192 pixels. You may choose a smaller image if you wish, but be aware that the minimum dimensions for a Google+ cover photo are 480 x 270.
-Twitter and LinkedIn both have set dimensions for cover images, with no alternative minimum or maximum. Twitter cover photos should be 1500 x 250 pixels, while LinkedIn recommends the dimensions of 1400 x 425 pixels.
You should also be sure to stay on top of any policy changes regarding image rules or restrictions for cover photos. For example, promotional text in cover images may be prohibited on some social media outlets.

2. Elicit an emotional response

The most iconic images throughout history became so well-known and popular because they provoke some type of feeling within their viewers. Whether it is happiness, sadness, nostalgia, or any number of other emotions, photos that make us feel something can be powerful marketing tools. We are psychologically drawn to photos of other people. Utilizing powerful images of people in your cover photos can leave a lasting impact on potential customers, thereby increasing brand recognition and providing an emotional link between the client and your product or brand. You may even consider featuring images of your fans in your cover image. This will engage your audience and make your fans feel like VIPs.

3. Use colours wisely

Because your cover photos take up so much space on your social media page, it needs to work well with the established colour scheme of your branding. To appear as professional as possible, the colours in your cover image should match your business’s logo and/or profile image colours as well as possible. Otherwise, viewers may see your page as thrown-together and sloppy, leading them to have a lower opinion of your brand. Additionally, the images used in your cover photos should fit logically with your brand and/or product. For example, if your product is a stylish collection of designer dog collars, your cover image could showcase a well-groomed pooch modelling one of your collars. Even if your cover image and profile photo don’t match perfectly, you should ensure that your colour palette is made up of complementary colours.

4. Change it up

You’ve spent hours designing the perfect cover image. The theme and colours match your branding, it’s emotionally engaging, and it follows all the rules and adheres to the size restrictions of your chosen social media outlet. You’re home free, right? Wrong! Let your audience know that you maintain an active social media presence and that your brand is being constantly updated to keep it at its best. Use your best judgment and time cover photo changes to coincide with new product rollouts, promotions, seasonal events, or other unique aspects of your business that should be highlighted.
In conclusion, your cover photos are like the virtual smile and firm handshake that you are unable to give your online customers. So, be sure to set aside time, and, if necessary, money (if you choose to utilize the services of a graphic designer), to make your cover photos unique. Do you have more tips for better social media cover photos? Share them with us!

You can download our Social Media Dimensions guide for FREE here!

How to tweak your posts for different social media

tweak your posts for different social media

Each social media has its advantages, and catering to those is what will make your posts stand out to become more successful. Social media marketers today need to be creative and patient when posting on different platforms. Here we’ve taken six of the most prominent social sites on the internet, and give you tips on how to  tweak your posts for different social media and make your business online as successful as possible.

Facebook

They call it the Newsfeed for a reason: people flock to Facebook to get information. Make sure to post high-quality information that your subscribers find useful, and better yet, find worth sharing. Many users also use Facebook over their smartphones, so creating mobile-friendly posts and content is always a plus. But the most important tactic for a good Facebook post is to include an image. A recent study found that posts including at least one photo have the highest rate of engagement on Facebook!

Twitter

Punctuation and correct grammar are often sacrificed on Twitter to follow the 140 character limit. But keep in mind that you want your business to look professional, so avoid using abbreviations or misspelling words to try and add more information. Another helpful tip: keep at least 20-30 characters left over after typing out your tweet, which will allow users to Retweet your content with a comment of their own.

Google +

Some of the basic tools within Google+ may seem like common sense, but should be used as often as possible to promote content interaction. This includes adding images, using relevant hashtags (so you can be found with searches), tagging other pages and people, and especially commenting and interacting with those who have commented or engaged with you. Google+ doesn’t leave as much room for interaction compared to other social media sites, so making the most of the comment sections will really put your customer interaction ahead.

Pinterest

Luckily enough, Pinterest has a simple enough interface that there are TONS of statistics showing which types of pictures get the most pins or shares. For example, pins that are orange or red are twice as likely to be repinned. Personal pictures are also not for this social platform; images containing human faces were repinned 23% less than those without. Also take your colors into account: using 50% color saturation is the best, since images with this edit were shared four times as often as 100% saturated ones, and ten times more often than black and white photos.

LinkedIn

Since LinkedIn is strictly a professional social media site, you are going to have a very specific audience to target your posts towards. Spend some time researching your audience and analyzing which posts you’ve shared in the past that have gotten the best reactions, and tailor your future posts with this information. Users also don’t want to linger on LinkedIn, so try and keep your posts as informative and useful as possible, and under 60 characters.

Instagram

Instagram may make anyone feel like a professional photographer, but that doesn’t mean basic photography rules can be avoided. Always use the rule of thirds, where the subject of your picture occupies 2/3 of the screen. Also, don’t go too crazy with the photo editing. Try and keep your filters consistent, to provide a standard look for your company posts. And possibly the best thing about Instagram is its comments section, which always attracts people to share their opinion. Use this to your advantage by asking a question in the photo description, and responding to commenters in a way that doesn’t simply sell your brand.
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How to Take Better Selfies – from Adorama

how to take a better selfie

Today, selfies are everywhere—created and shared by people from all backgrounds across the globe—providing glimpses into daily lives, exciting accomplishments, special moments in time, and much more. But one important question still remains… How to take better selfies?

www.adorama.com puts together a comprehensive infographic on what to do to get the best selfies in town

Read the original article here

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Did you like these tips on how to take better selfies? Share yours in the comments section below!