Instagram Marketing: The Sky’s the Limit

The Goldmine That Is Instagram Marketing

Instagram marketing is becoming increasingly important for many organisations, especially those in highly visual industries, such as retailers, restaurants, entertainment, and travel companies. The channel has seen explosive growth since it first appeared on the scene in 2010, and is showing no signs of slowing. New figures published by The Guardian show the photo-sharing platform’s monthly active user base has more than doubled in size over the past two years, with 500 million people a month worldwide now using Instagram.

Here is a quick look on why Instagram marketing matters, how companies can increase engagement across the platform, and how they can measure their successes.

So, Why Instagram?

Simply put, text is on its way out. Our audience want to experience visual engagement through pictures and videos that take no time to digest.

Instagram revealed that the app has more than 400 million monthly users, 80 million daily photos, 3.5 billion daily likes, and lots of opportunity to marketers. Forrester named Instagram the “King of social engagement,” citing that top brands’ Instagram posts generated a per-follower engagement rate of 4.2 percent. That is 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook, and 120 times more engagement per follower than Twitter! Instagram marketing is powerful as it allows our audience to visually consume ideas and make decisions about our brand without us being too pushy.

So how can we generate ROI from Instagram marketing engagement?

Step 1: Content First

First, we need to share interesting content that resonates with our audience.

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism is a Meltwater client that uses Instagram marketing wisely. They uploaded a stunning image of dolphins to showcase how they were named the #1 destination to encounter big animals while scuba diving. They could have simply taken a picture of their award, but instead they got creative and snapped one of the dolphins celebrating.

MJ 3.png

Whilst it’s great to showcase our company successes, Social Media Today suggests marketers apply the 20/80 rule: 20% of posts should promote our products directly; the remaining 80% should promote our brand lifestyle. This means posts don’t have to directly relate back to our product, but rather what’s of interest to our audience, especially ones that will inspire them. Whilst the channel is primarily photo based, text based images such as memes and quotes are a great way to bring our brand voice to life. Take a look at Fit Tea’s Insta account, the herbal tea company has many famous affiliates helping to promote its message, including the Kardashian clan. And now Ryan Gosling is also on hand to lend some encouragement, apparently!

squat.png

Instagram marketing can also help strengthen brand identity by offering a behind-the-scenes peek into the culture and lifestyle that surround our brand. Showcasing employees is an easy way to add a personal edge to our Instagram marketing and maybe help with recruiting while we’re at it. Take a look at Meltwater’s Instagram account. We love sharing pics from special events along with office snapshots of #meltwaterlife.

aaa.png

Also aim to get customers involved and ask them to show off photos of themselves interacting with the brand or using our product. Coco White tooth whitening oil is a great recent example of user generated content. Don’t underestimate the power of a double tap; it can go a long way!
coco.png

Step 2: Wise Words

Second, use captions wisely. If Instagram is all about a company’s visual identity, then the caption adds context to the visual. Don’t state the obvious, but share a story. Remember that people tend to read a caption once the image has their attention.

Also, don’t forget to include hashtags as they make for the perfect discover mechanism, as does location tagging! While Instagram allows for up to 30 tags, common consensus recommends 1-5 tags per post so we don’t #spam. If we want to include more, add them in the comments so they are searchable but will be hidden after more people start commenting. Before we start strategising on what links to include in our caption, we’ll want to know that Instagram does not allow them. The only place we can include a link (just one) is in our profile. We suggest using this space to link back to a company website. 

Step 3: Be Exclusive

Third, post exclusive deals or competitions on Instagram. Deals are a tangible reward for followers, and brands reap the benefit of having a network of people talking about them on their personal pages.

I’ve Increased Engagement.. Now What?

Once we increase our engagement, it’s critical to monitor our Instagram marketing efforts. Engagement analytics help marketers understand which types of posts our audience likes most, so we can can better focus our strategy. Not one to be left behind, Meltwater launched Instagram media monitoring this year, allowing customers to monitor mentions and keep track of engagement in real time.

In conclusion, remember that Instagram marketing is all about a company’s visual identity. Be true to the brand and promote the lifestyle. Engagement will follow.

That’s Not Content Marketing (Yes It Is)

Are you confused by what is and isn’t content marketing? With all of the rhetoric out there about content marketing, it’s easy to see why there is so much confusion.

Content marketing is a strategy for creating blogs, ebooks, guides, infographics, videos, campaigns, etc. that attract, engage, and convert clients.

As a strategic approach, B2B content marketing does have a large umbrella. Let’s take a look at common misperceptions about what is and isn’t content marketing.

Social Media Updates

It’s true that social media marketing is kind of its own animal, but it still falls under the category of content marketing. Why? Because when prospective or current clients look at your firm’s Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or Instagram account, it tells a story.

If your Facebook page only shows specials, it tells the story that your company is often running specials so potential clients should never pay full price for your products or services. If your Twitter page only shows quotes, it says that your company lacks originality and likely isn’t innovative. However, if your LinkedIn page shows articles from reputable sources, highlights the latest articles written by the experts at your firm, and includes product/service innovations or updates – it tells potential clients that your firm is a resource and the place to go for information on the products or services you sell.

What story does your social media tell?

Pricing Sheets

Does your pricing sheet simply list the prices and features of your services or products? Pricing sheets are absolutely a B2B content marketing piece when they are designed to tell a compelling story.

These sheets are a great opportunity to weave in the story of how your company helps your clients. Even the naming of your different pricing categories should reflect the value intrinsic to each service or product offering.

Rather than listing your services as option Bronze, Silver, or Gold, re-label them according to your company’s story. If your main value proposition is that you save your clients time, think of time-related names for your pricing sheets, such as Timesaver, Have More Time for Yoga, and Use All Your Vacation Time This Year.

FAQs

Most B2B firms have gathered a list of frequently asked questions and written clear responses to these questions. Did you know that FAQs are also considered content marketing? Here’s why: First you write up the FAQ and post it to your blog. Then you take that blog and redesign it to be a nice visual piece to display on your B2B website. Next, you take the FAQ and create an infographic that you pitch out to related industry resources. Finally, you take that FAQ, prepare it for print, print it, and give it to your sales team to hand out to prospects.

Woah. That just happened.

Yes, an FAQ is often considered part of the sales process, but, as a conversion tool, it tells potential customers WHY they want to work with you. How you answer those questions, how well you understand the right questions, and how you present that information all communicate why your firm is absolutely the right choice to partner with. Check out 17 Clever Ideas on How to Do Content Marketing.

Printed Brochures

Printed brochures are thought to be the domain of the sales team that marketing just adds some nice graphics too. Brochures are definitely to be considered content marketing as they are given to possible leads you are trying to convert into clients. The main question you need to ask is: Do these brochures tell the same story as the rest of my B2B content marketing efforts?

It’s not uncommon for companies to have a great blogging, social media, email, and overall inbound marketing strategy but have a lackluster capabilities brochure that they’ve been using for years. The brochure often doesn’t match the exciting story the rest of their B2B marketing tells.

A printed brochure should absolutely discuss the capabilities your firm has to offer, but it should also engage and excite your potential clients. If it’s simply a list of services, it will get filed under “Boring” or “Look at Later.” However, if it tells a compelling story of needs being met and exceeded, it will get looked at immediately.

Take a Second Look

Take a second look at what you consider as “not content marketing” in your organization. Sales promo items, brochures, cost sheets, FAQs, case studies, etc. can all contribute to telling your firm’s story – what makes clients want to do business with your firm.

Now that you understand the power of content marketing, put it to work by collaborating with PR to tell your firm’s brand story. 

 

Screen Shot 2016-04-21 at 4.11.04 PM.png

 

This article originally appeared in Bop Design. This article was written by Jeremy Durant from Business2Community and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

Infographic: Why Use Infographics in Digital Marketing?

From Facebook, Instagram, and Google, a digital marketer usually works on numerous platforms. In this profession, having to stay on top of the multitude of available channels means having to keep up with the trends that each medium entails.

When it comes to marketing on the World Wide Web, the use of infographics is an emerging trend that’s changing how we share, curate, and organize online information. A visually compelling marketing medium, an infographic is an efficient way of putting together images, text, and design to create a content that tends to be shared across an array of online platforms.

If you are on the fence of whether or not to integrate infographics into your digital marketing initiatives, here are the 6 reasons that might convince you of its importance.

#1 – It helps boost SEO

About 2 million pieces of online content are created every day. Thus, without a sound strategy for content creation, you can never get good and authoritative links. A good link portfolio is invaluable to SEO as it equates to a better search engine position and more people visiting your website.

#2 – It attracts people’s attention better

We are naturally visual beings. That means we are more likely to be captivated by images rather than by a big chunk of text. In fact, about 90 percent of data that goes to our brain are visual. Thus, if you want to draw more attention on platforms like Pinterest, Instagram, and Snapchat, an infographic would help a ton.

Aside from the fact that 40 percent of people responds better to visual aids than plain text, the attention span of today’s consumers is getting shorter, so rather than reading every word, people tend to simply skim through contents.

#3 – It has the potential to go viral

Did you know that tweets containing infographics are retweeted 832 percent more than the standard tweets? In addition to that, Slideshare found out that online users are three times more likely to share infographics than documents on their social handles, giving your content an opportunity to go viral.

Want more? If you’re ready to use infographics in digital marketing, take the time to evaluate your long-form content, transform it into infographics, and drive your content message home.

Create An Effective Infographic (2).png

 

This article was written by Jomer Gregorio from Business2Community and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.