The Ever Marketing World of Social Media: Simple Tips on How To

I can't tell you how many webinars I attended and articles I've read about "How To Use Instagram For Your Business" .... hundreds of hours devoted to learning about how one can manipulate others' judgements in order to making money, build a brand, staying in business, keeping sane. You can find yourself swimming in an ocean of self-doubt if you take all of these marketing blogs to heart -- I know I did! 

So, I've simplified it a bit. This guild will help you understand what is absolutely important to post, and to leave out, in order to help you build up your brand on Instagram and Facebook. Remember, even with your personal pages and accounts, it's all just marketing -- you're marketing your lunch and your weekend softball game, your late night shots with friends and your narcissistic selfie obsession, your political views and your last horrible breakup. All of it is a type of branding, advertisement, marketing -- whether it's your businesss or your life, everyone else is looking at what you choose to share. So be conscious of your choices! 

Now, here's the thing, you'll look on my Instagram account and see that I don't have millions of followers -- if that's what you're looking for this is not the article for you!!! For thousands or millions of followers you'll need to invest in an Social Media Marketing Team who will help you manipulate the algorithm to boost views and gain followers (I don't give two shits about how many people follow me, as long as the one who do are into what I'm posting... Quality not Quantity).

The following will help YOU focus your brand, collect your thoughts, and become more effective with posting. 


A Quick Steps Guide for posting/selling/growing on Instagram

A few things you need to remember about using Instagram for marketing a Brand:

1.    38% of today’s consumers are influenced by the Brand’s social media

2.    67% of today’s consumers value a detailed photo of the product more than the description 

3.    90% of processed information is visual

4.    78% of consumers make purchases influenced by the Brand’s social media posts  

 

What not to do:

1.    Hard sell – do not try to sell a product, do try to sell the branded culture

2.    Confusing a brand/company account for a personal account can leave your followers scratching their heads, and blowing past your product posts.

3.    Using too many hashtags can annoy followers.

4.    Tagging people in photos and posts, who aren’t in the photos – people do this for recognition, but it’s annoying to the ones being tagged and you may end up getting blocked.  

5.    Filters on every photo – too many filtered photos make feeds look cluttered, unprofessional and lazy (everyone has filters).  Avoid filters unless it works in your overall theme.

 

M.E.E.T. followers: 

(A guide to each post…. Before you post, make sure it falls into one of these categories)

Motivate: Be personable with the audience, empowering messages is the easiest way to gain an audience’s trust.

Educate: Give information, historical antidotes, answer one of the Who-What-When-Where-Whys to engage your audience.

Entertain: Be the reason they smile. Give them a reason to laugh. Leaving your audience with a positive experience will keep them coming back for more.

Tease: Give your audience a reason to engage in your posts. Make “first reveal” posts only on Instagram, hold contests with Q&A or “tag a friend”, announce “just for Instagram” deals and meetups

 

How to make a post count:

Know your brand in print language:

1. Have a color palateto work from. A theme of colors will strengthen the professionalism of a brand without making things too formal – it will make the brand seem organized and directed.

2. Less “hosting”is always best for a brand image. While being in a photo is a great way to show your brand is down-to-earth, keep selfies for that Instagram Stories. Posting a lot of “hosting”’ photos to a brand page is too informal for the audience and will negate the importance of your next product post. That being said, it’s always fun to have a team photo on the main feed, now and again.

3. Have a target audiencein mind to start building a community around. This will help you have more culturally relevant posts, that will lead to more shares and more sales! 

4. Hashtagscan make or break your feed.  Posting them in the comments instead of the photo description can de-clutter your post. Come up with a signature hashtag that your followers can easly use.  Incorporate trending, relevant hashtags to gain a wider following. (Imagine hashtags are like strings on a spider web and your post is like the spider sitting in the center of the web. Your goal is to find a few important hashtags that can connect you to the outer layers of that web, so your reach is wider.) 

5. Have all product posts point back to your website, or at place that sell your product– that can be as simple as tagging a store that carries your product or saying “link in bio” – This is what social media is great at… pointing. So, let the pointing drive sales! 

6. Make your photos look professional. You can do this by learning a little about composition, the rule of thirds, and lighting.  You don’t have to know everything to take a great photo with your phone, but learning a bit about it will help convey your message more clearly. (E.g. If a customer is comparing two similar products from two different brands, and one brand’s ads look professional while the other’s looks cheap and sloppy – the customer will buy the one with a brand that looks more professional, thinking that the brand is ultimately more reliable.)

 

***The word “professional” doesn’t have to be a bad word. Saying something is professional doesn’t mean it’s impersonal, cold or corporate – “professional” tells customers that your brand and your products are reliable.  It tells them your company puts thought into every aspect of the brand, which reflects on the quality of the product.