Social Media has not only become the norm for personal branding but also corporate branding. That said, 2021 will be a unique year where most businesses will have to learn how to kick-off new strategies, brands, and even products virtually – building on the success learned in 2020. This may be a stretch with over 3,000 small business owners listing marketing/advertising as one of the top 3 challenges in 2020, according to Guidant Financial. Nevertheless, social media as much as it has evolved is necessary yet still achievable for all businesses. Here are 3 ways to best utilize social media in Q1:
VOC – Voice of the Customer:
Any size company has the opportunity to hear from its customers; what a gift! This helps inform what your customers want, shows you where, and how, they’re engaged and identifies business efficiencies. According to socialbakers.com, “A report by Forrester projects that digital customer service interactions will increase by 40% in 2021.” An increasing number of customers will leverage sharing their voice via digital platforms, such as social media. Therefore it’s important to have eyes and ears available to capture any and all feedback.
Sets the stage for your brand:
Social media allows you to set the stage for the past, present, and future objectives of your brand. Addressing, and even readjusting, customer perceptions by highlighting improvements in products, services, and perhaps even culture. The oh-so-fun and delicious ice cream brand, Ben & Jerry’s, has mastered this concept. They highlight their organizations mission and culture through their ice cream. Their unique naming conventions, flavors and partnerships create dialogue and brand awareness on their social platforms. Furthermore, they give consumers an easy way to stay connected to up and coming trends. But, let’s be honest, do we really need a reason to eat ice cream?! Sharing your future strategy and seasonal items to show how you’re thinking ahead while also incentivizing customers to stay engaged through multiple platforms. It’s the best mix!
Highlight Your Customers:
Everyone enjoys being valued. Highlighting your customers showcases your target audience. Secondly, it shows that you care about customer satisfaction and not just sales. Lastly, it leads to brand loyalty through repeat and higher transactional customers. Smile.io confirms how “After one purchase, a customer has a 27% chance of returning to your store…[and] if you can get that customer to come back and make a second and third purchase, they have a 54% chance of making another purchase.” Highlighting your customers can be sharing them using a product, a short product review, or a customer testimonial. Plus it’s great content for your social media campaigns!
These 3 ways are best utilized in Q1 to help set the tone for the rest of the year. Creating a brand presence early helps potential customers look to your business first to meet their needs compared to competitors. Furthermore, all can be conducted on various platforms for a very low cost. Kick-off your Q1 social media strategy today. If this all sounds confusing, reach out to us to help – we’re always here for you
How To Use Instagram Stories and Instagram TV In Your Business
“Am I leveraging social media to the best of my ability?” is a question that many business owners ask themselves. According to Digital Media in Business, “88% of consumers expect businesses to integrate digital assistants as part of the shopping experience, to help them make better decisions.” As businesses use technology as the ultimate digital assistance to reach existing and new customers, social media has become a low-cost channel at optimizing business marketing and one of the newest channels is Instagram.
What’s the difference between Instagram Stories and IGTV?
Reaching up to 112.5 million U.S. users in 2020, Instagram is undoubtably one of the best social media platforms to market your business.
- Instagram stories are images or short videos that disappear after 24-hours of posting.
- Instagram TV (IGTV) resemble that of YouTube videos. These videos can be as short as one-minute and as long as 60 minutes. 60-minute videos must be uploaded from a computer but videos with up to 15 minutes of content can be uploaded from your mobile device. IGTV videos remain available for your followers as long as you have an active account.
Although different both options provide value to the users and account owners. Here are tips on how to best use each in growing your business.
- Flash Promotions and limited time information are ideal for marketing on your stories. These are communications that you want to share for a short time but desire an immediate response. Individuals who take an active interest in staying connected to your brand can be marked for more targeted messaging
- Use the ‘Ask me a question” feature to communicate with followers. By encouraging your followers to ask questions you can get testimonials, feedback, and even suggestions that you can incorporate into your product or service.
- Use IGTV to conduct demonstrations of your product or service to create an increased trust for your business. It also allows followers see the ins and outs of what you’re offering, while building content for future. Edit the demo for short videos that can be used for a future commercial, campaigns and even webinar!
- People want to feel connected to your brand. Giving followers access to things such as live interviews and events help create a sense of connection at the convenience of your follower.
IGTV and Instagram Stories In Action
When it comes to putting these tips into action, here are a few companies that have done it well mixing product promotion with their corporate philosophies.
With 25.8 million followers across the globe, Adidas’s Instagram account has leveraged marketing new product releases, brand ambassadors, campaign’s, and sponsored events. They’ve tracked anywhere from 135,000 to 1.1million views along with follower engagement such as comments and shares.
Honda Motor Company utilizes Instagram to drive their 4.2million followers to exclusive tours of one of the largest private Honda collections in the U.S. and even test drive a car.
Even Proctor & Gamble has built a following of 145K to tackle everything from social justice, to product sustainability tips, and even intimate Q&A sessions with employees and celebrities.
There are two key benefits to both features offered through this platform:
One, it’s an easy 1-step process for followers to repost your content, becoming free marketers for your business, and who doesn’t love free marketing?
Secondly, Instagram notifies the account owner how the activity was received by followers which can be used to drive your next marketing tactics. Hello, free feedback and focus group!
All-in-all, Instagram stories and IGTV create a simple way to do a lot in one platform for your business.
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Generating a buzz around your brand that appeals to your target audience isn’t for the faint of heart; it takes sound strategy, patience and determination. Of the various ways to rally excitement about your brand, a popular method that savvy marketers have adopted into their arsenal of tactics is hosting a social media giveaway.
You may have your fair share of experience with social media giveaways – whether being a hopeful participant, the host – or even, the winner. Giveaways can be a fun, creative way to build excitement around your brand and products using social media to connect with new potential customers. As with any type of investment, giveaways also involve a fair share of risk – but you know what they say: “no risk; no reward.”
Here are some pro tips to successfully guide you into a successful social media giveaway plan and execution:
Create Goals for Social Media Giveaways
Before you go any further, begin by defining the goals of your giveaway. Having clear key performance indicators (KPIs) is key to focus this effort specifically on achieving your particular goal(s). Without the right goal connected to your brand, your efforts could easily go awry.
Provide an Appealing Customer Prize
Winning a free prize is usually exciting, but a prize also needs to be worth the effort of entering your contest. Make sure the prize you are giving away is relevant and exciting to your target audience, otherwise, you’re wasting your time and energy – or even worse, deterring people from your brand. A truly grand prize should win you over new leads and followers.
Here are some prize examples to get you started:
- A limited-edition product
- Products from influencers in the market
- A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity
- Gift cards
Time Your Giveaway Right
When do you want to launch your giveaway? When will you end the giveaway? You’ll want to make those decisions early on in your planning process to optimize your efforts and avoid potential conflicts.
- Look at the calendar. You might use popular events or seasons as an asset to your giveaway strategy. What time of year will it be during the giveaway? Are there any big events that may distract your audience from it?
- E.g.: Consumers are more receptive to making purchases around Thanksgiving than they are on January 31st.
- Ensure the type of prize you are giving and the timing of your giveaway align with the time of year, and will cut through the noise of your strongest competitors.
- E.g.: Giving special Valentine’s Day discounts or prize(s) for your restaurant could add value before the popular holiday, but conversely, giving away a set of lipsticks when a big beauty industry competitor is launching a new product line could render your brand irrelevant and get lost in the shadow of your competitor.
Partner with an Influencer or a Celeb
Industry partnerships can be a powerful way to appeal to your target audience for participation in your giveaway. Think about who your demographic is excited about – is it a celebrity or an influencer? You’ll draw attention and build rapport with your target audience if you can partner with an established pro in your industry.
Encourage Participation in Your Giveaway
Make sure the steps for entering your contest are as simple and straightforward as possible to avoid confusion or worse – abandonment. Believe it or not, many digital marketers over-complicate the sign-up process by adding too many steps to contest entries. Simply put: the easier it is to enter your contest, the more entries and engagements you’ll have.
Several related considerations:
Don’t require an email sign-up for entries. Giveaways are meant to be a fun, introductory way to connect with new users. Many people are turned off by the commitment of signing up with their email, especially if they don’t know your brand very well.
Promote your giveaway to your email list. You might even add an extra incentive to your pre-existing email recipients to enter the contest by sharing a link to your blog or website on their social feed(s) – like on Facebook or Twitter.
Make it easy to enter using the same platform it’s posted on. For example, if you post the contest on Facebook, allow contestants to enter on Facebook. If you post it on LinkedIn, allow them to enter on LinkedIn. Making it easy to enter is essential.
Make sure the steps for entering your contest are as simple and straightforward as possible to avoid confusion or worse – abandonment.
Use Giveaway Tools
One effective method of hosting a contest is by using a giveaway tool to create and manage your contest. Giveaway tools offer an out-of-the-box, cohesive, streamlined system for running your entire contest from start to finish. There are a variety of powerful, user-friendly giveaway tools available – here are some popular options you might explore:
While there are some great benefits to using giveaway tools, the caveat to that option is the range of actions restricted from use on social channels.
Announce your giveaway on all of your social channels
and include one or all of the following actions to organically promote it:
- Follow your profile(s) – and any collaborating partner’s profile
- Like the photo promoting your contest
- Leave a comment or caption under your photo
- Tag-a-friend (or 3) under your photo promoting the giveaway
- Repost your photo promoting the contest
Try to incorporate a viral loop built into your giveaway – another benefit of using a giveaway tool like the ones mentioned above. A giveaway loop is a powerful way to allow your contest entrants to share a custom link to your contest with family and friends. Many giveaway tools have the viral loop functionality, which will encourage participation and attract more unique visitors to your brand. Remember to read up on any restrictions associated with using giveaway tool instead of implementing an organic process.
When your giveaway is over, be sure to celebrate your winner(s)
– it will show your appreciation of their support and could further increase rapport with consumers. You could even post a photo of the winner with the prize – another way to boost awareness, reach new followers and drive authentic user engagement around your brand.
Follow the Giveaway Rules in Your State
There are certain legalities regarding contests and giveaways, so we recommend doing your homework or speaking to a professional to help you determine which rules and regulations pertain to your local and state laws.
We hope this giveaway guide helps you feel confident to use this creative digital marketing method of increasing your brand awareness and reach.
You don’t have to go at it alone.
Dekaf Digital specializes in social media marketing and would be happy to connect with you to determine what type of strategy is best suited to your brand.