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iBlog

HOW TO RESPOND TO COMMENTS ON INSTAGRAM | FACEBOOK RANKS LIVE VIDEOS HIGHER IN NEWS FEED

The magazine for women influencers

10

Strategies to take your

Facebook marketing

to the next level

Special Feature

AGENCY INSIDERS What's HOT? What's Not!

STOP DATING YOURSELF AND YOUR CONTENT

7 THINGS

You're Not Doing On Instagram

September 16

Join over 200,000 influencers that read iBlog magazine!

YOU'RE USING THE WRONG PLATFORM

TO GROW YOUR FOLLOWERS!


CONTENTS 10 DO THIS DAILY ON FACEBOOK If Facebook changes make marketing difficult, do this instead

12 INFLUENCER MARKETING What I learned on my retreat from influencer marketing

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14 WHAT SHOULD YOU SAY? How to respond to comments on Instagram

“Offer a discount code as an additional thank you.”

16 VIDEO RANKS HIGHER Facebook now ranks live videos higher in the news feed

18 YOU’RE NOT UTILIZING INSTAGRAM Here are 7 things you’re probably not doing yet

Social Media

LinkedIn

22 Using the Wrong Platform? Trying to grow followers isn’t easy, especially if you’re not using the right tools 4

iBlog magazine SEPT 2016

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14 Branding

38 Turning Followers into Customers There are several prospects for growth hidden within LinkedIn’s platform

44 How to Increase Brand Visibility Learn how to better connect with your target customers on Instagram


THE INSIDERS Industry-leading agency and network executives share insights & predicitons

>24 Feature - The Insiders

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Inspira Marketing

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RF Binder

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Everywhere Agency

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Find Your Influence

34

Boden PR

Seeking Cooperative, Integrated Solutions between Influencers and Brands Communicating With a Purpose Embracing Constant Change In it to win it: Find Your Influence founders share their wisdom Evolution: Boden Public Relations stays ahead of the curve

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NEW IBLOGMAGAZINE.COM Coming in September

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE FACEBOOK MARKETING 10 STRATEGIES TO TAKE YOUR FACEBOOK MARKETING TO THE NEXT LEVEL

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CONTENT STRATEGY STOP DATING YOURSELF: THE CASE FOR KEEPING YOUR CONTENT DATE FREE

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TOP BLOGGER RECIPES ROASTED EGGPLANT PIZZA & WATERMELON JICAMA SALAD RECIPES FROM LUVAFOODIE

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Agency Insiders

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n an industry filled with the need for constant change, new hit platforms (Snapchat, anyone?) and the urge to discover the next best thing, influencers and brands are trying to identify just how to best achieve their marketing goals together. Influencer marketing has become more and more a piece of the marketing pie rather than an afterthought and that means exciting projects lie ahead. To gain further insights on this subject, we reached out to industry-leading agency & network executives. They share what trends they see in the influencer industry, their predictions for 2017 and what they would change if they could in candid articles about influencer marketing today. The question is, how do you get to that level? Everyone wants to grow their numbers, brands and influencers alike. But the question is, are you trying to grow on the right platforms? It’s important to identify which social platforms your key followers are likely to be on and embrace learning from your statistics if you really want to grow. This helps when identifying potential partnerships as well. Speaking of partnerships, as influencers are trying to grow with new opportunities and partnerships, there are many avenues to pursue. One major resource that may already be in use is LinkedIn. But did you know that even experienced LinkedIn users can overlook amazing features that can lead to some great connections? Check out the details to help grow your relationships even further on LinkedIn.

All of the work to grow and evolve will work in favor for influencers and brands alike. The more we can all work together to achieve ultimate marketing goals, the more budgets can be adjusted to accommodate successful influencers. So, what we want to see are influencers who keep pushing and persevering and companies to keep learning- and everyone to keep communicating.

iBlog magazine reaches over 200,000 women influencers in print and digital magazines. iBlog magazine is delivered to 1,000's of influencers at 30+ social media conferences annually. Contact us. Advertising inquiries:

Membership inquiries:

market@iBlogmagazine.com 813-551-0007

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Writing & Editorial inquiries:

231 N. Tennessee Ave. Lakeland, FL 33801

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editor@iBlogmagazine.com


iBlog Advisory Committee Industry leaders committed to your success

Laura Mayes Co-founder, Mom 2.0 Summit, Camp Mighty, Go Mighty, Kirtsy

Ana Flores Founder, We All Grow Summit, #WeAllGrow Latina Network, Spanglish Baby

Stacey Ferguson

Kristin Hylek

Co-founder, Blogalicious Justice Fergie Lifestyle Media, Attorney

Manager, Alliances & Brands PR & Brand Engagement McDonald’s USA, LLC

Emily McKhann

Barbara Jones

Aliza Freud

Angela Sustaita-Ruiz

Co-Founder, The Motherhood The McKhann Media Group

Founder, one2one Network CEO, Blissful Media Group

Founder & CEO SheSpeaks & SocialSpeaks.com

Co-founder, Hispanicize Dime Media

Kim Garst

Danica Kombol

Jeannette Kaplun

Pat Flynn Founder, Smart Passive Income, iTunes Top Podcaster, Author, Blogger

Kerry O’Shea Gorgone Instructional Design Mgr. Enterprise Training at Marketing Profs

Co-founder, Boom! Social, Forbes Top 20 Women Social Media Influencers

Cecilia Mecca Co-founder of iRetreat conference & Double Duty Divas

CEO & Founder Everywhere Agency

Founder, Hispana Global, Author-Todobebe, TV Host Journalist, Spokesperson

Bridgette Duplantis

Jyl Johnson Pattee

Co-founder of iRetreat conference & Double Duty Divas

Laurie Schacht

Nadia Jones

MJ Tam

Co-publisher The Toy Insider, President The Toy Book

CEO Niche Parent Blogger Network, Social Media Strategist

Editor, Chicagonista Co-Founder, Women Driving excellence

Watch for iBlog's New & Improved Digital Magazine Coming Soon!

Founder, Mom It Forward, Family Forward Conference

Ronnie Tyler Co-founder, Black and Married With Kids, Tyler New Media

Do you support women influencers? iBlog magazine is seeking out new partnerships with national brand, agency and pr firm executives that would like to participate on the iBlog magazine Advisory committee. Join our industry leaders and partner with the largest business resource for women influencers online. Receive year-round exposure for your brand(s), benefit from our partnerships with leading influencer networks and conferences while discovering new opportunities to support and interact with influencers in the iBlog magazine community. For more information about iBlog’s Advisory committee please email us at: Advisors@ iBlogmagazine.com Printed in the USA, Copyright © 2016 by iTell Ventures, Inc. All rights reserved. iBlog magazine is published monthly except for combined July/August and December/January issues, by iTell Ventures, Inc. 231 N. Tennessee Ave., Lakeland, FL 33801. Subscriptions are by membership to iBlogmagazine.com website only. Address all membership correspondences to membership@iblogmagazine.com. To change address please visit your membership account at iBlogmagzine.com. Material in this publication must not be stored or reproduced in any form without permission.

ADVISORS


September/October 16 conferences and events

CoLab 20 Digi San Diego, CA

21 FinCon San Diego, CA

24 ShiftCon

At this event, we're going to help transform you, your business and your life. We know you want to achieve: higher revenues, growth on your team, nancial freedom through passive and active income, stronger work-life balance and to discover your passion and live the life you love.

A community of money media nerds will combine for a weekend of learning. FinCon is for digital content creators in personal finance and investing. Attendees connect and learn to create, promote, and profit from compelling online content, and discover new trends in personal finance and investing.

Are you a green-friendly or wellness blogger? ShiftCon is the only social media conference focusing on wellness, health, and the environment. We blend workshops, parties, networking and intense collaboration of social media in uencers from all over the country in one place.

OCTOBER

Manhattan Beach, CA

7 BlogHer Food ’16

4 M2Moms Conference

7 2:1 Conference

M2Moms® is the world’s premier conference on marketing to moms. Since its founding in 2005, the event has been attended by thousands of senior-level brand managers and marketing executives from Fortune 500 companies representing major consumer product and service categories.

The 2:1 Conference is a faith-based conference for homeschooling parents who blog (not just about homeschooling), or are active in social media. O ering knowledgeable speakers, our goal at 2:1 is to equip you with the tools and con dence needed to succeed in your blogging as well as homeschooling journeys.

7 TECHmunch Miami

7 Pinners Conference & Expo

12 Barkworld

BakeSpace.com’s TECHmunch is the traveling conference that helps food and lifestyle bloggers learn the skills they need to succeed and take their blogs to the next level. The day-long conference is a must-attend event for anyone serious about culinary content and brands that want to work with culinary content creators.

Pinners Conference is a consumer event for the public to create in real life their interests that they have pinned on Pinterest. 101 classes are taught during the event, largely by popular bloggers from around the nation. 225 shopping booths are also on site. It’s a fantastic way for bloggers to meet their fans and gain new friends in a face- to-face environment.

BarkWorld’s commitment to providing superior programming designed to educate, inspire, connect, and bring together the world’s leading pet-centric social media creators, brands and pet industry experts. Attendees will have the opportunity to drive brand awareness by creating authentic connections with both brands and other influencers.

Blog Con 15 NEPA Dunmore, PA

21 Food Bloggers of Canada

Parent East 27 Type-A Orlando, FL

Panels and sessions related to blogging, social media, marketing, Internet culture, creativity, technology, and more. Plenty of opportunities to network with other likeminded conference-goers. NEPA BlogCon draws students, educators, coaches, marketing pros, small business owners, non-profit multitaskers, creative types, and anyone else interested in learning how to communicate more effectively online.

Food Bloggers of Canada is Canada’s only national conference for food bloggers. It’s a fun, intimate event for bloggers, brands and speakers alike. We focus on providing professional development for our members and other interested bloggers, an intimate atmosphere to foster blogger-to-blogger and blogger-to-brand networking and, of course, an emphasis on great food!

Three+ days of top-notch sessions, workshops, and keynotes featuring some of the best and brightest speakers in the business. We will also include a special track dedicated to EXPLODING YOUR INCOME featuring sessions on passive income for bloggers, landing high-paying gigs with brands and agencies, selling your own digital content, getting published, and landing long-term paying contracts.

New York, NY

Miami, FL

CONFERENCES

Sandusky, OH

Scottsdale, AZ

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Austin, TX

This is the world’s largest conference for online food content creators, is open to anyone and everyone who considers themselves part of the social media and online content creator space. #BlogHerFood16 is focused on highlighting the skills and talents of women who are rising their voices and creating content online.

Atlanta, GA


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Facebook

THE

#1 THING

YOU SHOULD BE DOING ON FACEBOOK EVERY DAY

Are you a bit sick and tired of Facebook curtailing our reach to our fan base? Good news: I have the answer! The #1 thing you should be doing on Facebook every day in order to solve this HUGE problem ... It’s VIDEO! The news that Facebook is changing things up once again probably doesn’t surprise you. The New York Times recently reported that Facebook is indeed changing their algorith A-G-A-I-N! I frequently tell people that change is the only constant in social media. I mean really, wouldn’t it be boring if things stayed the same all the time?

That said, wouldn’t it be lovely if Facebook would STOP already with decreasing reach to our fan base? Can I get an AMEN? But I am not worried about it and nor should you be and here is WHY: There is a workaround! Did you know that there are over 100 million videos watched each and every day on Facebook? Mark Zuckerberg talked about how powerful video is and particularly, live video, at the last F8 Summit. He specifically stated that “we are at the beginning of the golden age of video” and that he thinks in five years that Facebook will be predominantly video based content. Hmmm ... okay, so now we know that video is hot. What does this mean to us as marketers and specifically, how can we use this info to get in front of our fan base, right? Video is the #1 thing you should be sharing on your Facebook page each and every day and I have some great tips to share with you on how to do this, quickly and easily!

“WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO US AS MARKETERS? HOW CAN WE USE THIS INFO TO GET IN FRONT OF OUR FAN BASE?”

3 Ways to Use Video To Get More Reach on Your Facebook Page 1. Use Facebook LIVE To Increase Reach Without Paying Now don’t panic just because I said Facebook Live :-). That said though, listen up real quick, because the opportunity with Facebook LIVE is immense! Facebook is GIVING reach to those that Facebook Live. Yep, you heard it here. Facebook actually pushes FREE reach to your live-streams and the longer you are

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live, the more free reach you receive. For example, I can go live and have a reach of over 400,000-500,000 people in less than an hour! That’s insane, right? Oh and here’s the true value … with ZERO ad spend! If you decide that Facebook LIVE is some-

thing you want to try, please don’t go at it with no plan. Make sure you show up and be prepared to be valuable to your viewers in some way. You want to make a difference in their life in some way that is relevant to them.


2. Use Video Apps To Create Videos Quickly and Easily I use my phone to create video conten! Some of my favorite apps: ARTISTO

One that I found fairly recently that is not only pretty nifty but also very unique. I am always about what is different and not something that everyone else is doing. What will catch people’s eye. I think this is definitely one of those resources! Artisto is available for both iOS and Android devices.

“I FREQUENTLY TELL PEOPLE THAT CHANGE IS THE ONLY CONSTANT THING IN SOCIAL MEDIA.” 3. Use the Create Slideshow on Your Fan Page to Create A Video Facebook really wants us to share more video and they are making it easier and easier for us to do just that! This option is on your fan page when you click to post a status. You can choose 3-7 photos and Facebook will turn them into a video clip. I recently created a slideshow video of photos I took of me goofing around with Snapchat filters. It was amazingly quick and easy to do! I am sure you will find that these videos will receive more reach than your average post.

RIPL

One reason I love Ripl is that it allows you to import up to five photos that rotate and provide movement in the video. Additionally, they are always adding new animation templates to the app. Definitely worth checking into this app.

ADOBE SPARK I actually wrote a blog post about how to use this app and my admiration for this app just continues to grow. The beautiful part about this app is that it is not only a phone app (sorry, just for iOS devices right now, Android coming soon!) but they also have a web-based version of the app. Best of all, if you can simply type text, you can use this app! It’s very easy to, quickly and easily, create amazing video content!

Kim Garst

www.kimgarst.com Instagram: kimgarst

FACEBOOK


Marketing

What I Learned During My Retreat from

Influencer Marketing A

nyone who knows me or has read my content knows that influencer marketing is what gets me excited. It’s a marketing strategy I advocate often. Over the past four years, I’ve watched influencer marketing go from crawling to walking and have been awed (and sometimes exhausted) at how quickly it changes. Marketing trends are often characterized by buzzwords that go in and out of style. It’s not uncommon to hear thought leaders in the marketing and PR industries claim that influencer marketing will be dead in a few years. In fact, my mentor has even said this. Because this is my bread and butter, I had to find out if influencer marketing is a fading trend that would make me, as a marketer, irrelevant in a few years. I found myself wondering where I believed influencer marketing was headed, how I should position myself as a marketer in this industry, and if influencer marketing is as amazing as I’ve been saying it is over the years. Obviously, it was time to re-evaluate. I decided that a digital cleanse was in order and went on a road trip. I tried to put influencer marketing out of my brain for a bit, so that I could return to it with fresh eyes and an open mind. Of course, I had to have a lot of catch-up conversations and read through my favorite influencer marketing thought leaders’ content, but I regrouped and reshaped how I view this type of marketing. And I’m excited to share what I learned, now that I’ve taken a break and revisited the sexy world of influencer marketing.

The Term Has Sex Appeal I’m not going to lie—I was a little worried that my image was too closely tied with the term “influencer marketing,” and when I came back to the real world, I decided to drop it from my resumé for a hot second. The terms “creative brand partnerships” or “third-party recommen12

iBlog magazine SEPT 2016

“It envelops many aspects of branding and has been happening since the beginning of time.”

dations” or “word-of-mouth marketing” didn’t impress brands as much as I had hoped. I added and embraced “influencer marketing” again and immediately sparked a ton of interest. Call influencer marketing what you want, it works, and everyone wants it.

Influencer Marketing Is Not Going Away Influencer marketing is considered by many to be a buzzword. And it might be, but it envelops many aspects of branding and has been happening since the beginning of time. Part of my digital cleanse included spending time at my grandparents’ house. When I explained influencer marketing to them (people who are brilliant but not super into the digital realm), they grasped the industry immediately. Since humans have been around, self-promotional mentions have been less effective than someone else singing your praises. Influencer marketing has always been here, and it always will be. It may change its name, but it’s certainly not going anywhere.

Most Marketers Already Know Who Their Influencers Are Influencer marketing has been growing up—a lot. Most marketers aren’t asking if they should implement it anymore. Instead, they’re asking how they should implement it. For the most part, brands know who and where their influencers are, and they spend their time and resources on figuring out how to


creatively work those influencer relationships and how to constantly refine their strategy.

Brands Need a Better Understanding of How to Pay Influencers One of the biggest pain points in running campaigns and strategies with influencers is the issue of compensation. Between vague guidelines from the FTC and wanting to keep earned posts authentic, a lot of marketers are having trouble finding that sweet spot between maintaining authenticity and making sure influencers are compensated for their valuable, word-of-mouth brand recommendations. Since influencers are replacing traditional advertising techniques, marketing budgets should re-route their spending and be a little more willing to find a way to pay their influencers in a manner that complies with the FTC and preserves authenticity.

Brands Are Finally Embracing Micro-Influencers I’ve always been a fan of the mid-level influencers and quality over quantity. Recent posts, case studies, and strategies show that the majority of brands are embracing these kinds of micro-influencers. Typically, a micro-influencer is someone who truly loves your brand (whether a follower or consumer) and has anywhere from 500 to 10,000 followers.

Influencer Marketing Needs to Embrace Affiliate Marketing Affiliate marketing often carries negative connotations with its name. But so many brands are doing it (and loving it), but they don’t call it “affiliate.” While it’s hard to pinpoint how this term became so negative, when done well, it’s a fantastic part of an influencer marketing strategy. “Performance-based marketing” seems to be the word of choice to describe this brand-influencer relationship, meaning that brands pay influencers by engagement, not a flat fee for a post. From a brand perspective, I dig affiliate marketing. You give an influencer a unique link, which prompts them to own the process of promoting your brand. Affiliate marketing leads to more mentions on blogs and social channels and incentivizes ownership. Of course, there are also downfalls to implementing only one type of approach. I recommend that brands work out this type of relationship with influencers they already have vetted for advocacy and authenticity.

“No one prefers to hear about a brand from the brand itself.”

Influencer Generated Content Can Be Used Everywhere The backbone of influencer marketing is that it’s an effective way to get a third party to talk about a brand—no one prefers to hear about a brand from the brand itself. Brands are actually embracing this and taking it a step further than simply earning posts. Bigger brands have embraced just how golden their influencer-created content is and have found brilliant ways to incorporate it into all aspects of their brand. You’ll start to notice this on website homepages, newsletters, marketing emails, and more. If you dig what I’m saying, try adding content created by influencers that say cool things about your brand to some of these parts of your company: • Homepage content • Testimonials • Ebooks • Newsletter content • Education resources • Sales decks

Kristen Matthews convinceandconvert.com @KristenWords

MARKETING


WHAT SHOULD YOU SAY?

Instagram

How to Respond to Comments on Instagram

O

“Offer a discount code as an additional thank you.”

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ne of the things I’m always preaching about Instagram etiquette is the need to respond to comments on Instagram. I say it over and over: respond to all the comments on your posts! This is important in growing your community and actually building relationships with your audience. However, for as much as I preach this, there are a variety of comments that you might receive and not all of them deserve the same type of response.

A COMPLIMENT ON YOUR POST

These are often some of the most common comments you’ll receive on your posts. People may appreciate the beauty of the image, the artistic composition of the photo, the value of the quote, or some other aspect. Their comments typically offer some variation of a compliment on the content. If the person is genuinely complimenting your post, respond in a thankful manner. Something as simple as “Thank you” or “Thanks” or “Glad you liked this one” is more than fine. If they called out specifics or got detailed in their comments, responding with a similar level of personalization is ideal. In these situations, the extra step makes you more genuine and relatable. Now, if the person is being spammy in their compliments, you can choose how you want to handle them. Spam attempts are those who say “great pic! Follow me back” or “You look great!” (when there’s no person in the photo) or other variations on these. And they usually try to get you to check their profiles or follow them back. Personally, I usually call them out, tell them I don’t condone spam on my content and that I will be deleting their comment. You can do this to if you


feel comfortable with it. Otherwise, simply ignoring or even deleting the comment is an alternative. Also, if you do delete their comment, you can choose to do so while deleting and reporting as a spam/scam. I do this frequently when the spam attempt is blatant. Instagram does review this feedback in its analysis of what accounts are adhering to their terms.

A RESPONSE TO YOUR QUESTION

Did you ask your audience a question? Or ask them to tag people or perform an action on your post? If you did, you really should respond to them and thank them for their input! This is called being “social”. While I can’t give you targeted ways to respond to this, since it will depend on what you originally asked of them, your response should include gratitude (thank you) for their comment and input. If they’ve answered a question or provided specifics, I again recommend you personalize your response. Something like “I hadn’t tried that yet” or “What a clever suggestion” or “I really like that idea” in response to their comment is a good way to acknowledge their comment.

A QUESTION OR CUSTOMER SERVICE ISSUE

If one of your fans or one of your customers reaches out to you on Instagram with a question or customer service issue, you MUST (in my opinion) respond to them. If someone is looking to you for help, it is your obligation to provide that support. Answer their question as accurately and promptly as possible. Be specific and helpful— this your real opportunity to provide value to your audience. If the question or issue is something that requires a more personalized approach that you don’t want to publicly address on your post, respond to their comment and let them know that you want to help them but that you will send them a private DM to resolve the issue privately. First of all, this allows you to respect their privacy and address the issue. But secondly, it shows your other followers that you do respond and take these issues seriously.

“Offer a discount code as an additional thank you.”

“Responding with a similar level of personalization is ideal. In these situations, the extra step makes you more genuine and relatable.” AN @ MENTION TO SOMEONE ELSE

This happens quite commonly where someone who follows you @ mentions a friend on your post. Sometimes it’s just their Instagram username, other times it’s their name and a question or comment. For example, “@ soandso what do you think of this?” or it might be specific to the item in your post or it might be something like “I saw this and thought of you.” Personally, I don’t typically respond if it’s a simple @ mention of someone. This is because I don’t know what the context of the mention was for and don’t want to interfere or insert myself into a conversation. However, if they have left an additional comment, then a response may be warranted. A simple “Thank you” or “thanks for sharing this with your friends” may be appropriate – you know your audience best. You can also send the person who commented a Direct Message with a personalized thank you. Another tip I recommend, especially if your post is product based, is to offer a discount code as an additional thank you for sharing your products. If the person tagged responds with a positive comment (they like them, they want it, so pretty, etc.) then I would

DEFINITELY respond to both the original person and the tagged person in a response. Thank the original person for sharing, and show your gratitude that the tagged person liked the product. Again, if you want to find a way to seal the deal, throwing in a coupon code for them (DM or in a comment) will both show your appreciation, customer service, and be more likely to convert the sale. Also, if more people notice this pattern of reward, they may be more likely to do this again, or themselves. People are willing to share a lot for an extra 10% off at their favorite retailers and stores.

A SPAM POST@ MENTION TO YOU

These ones get beyond annoying and I’m asked about how to handle these all the time. There are a lot of spam posts out there (not your content, I know!), but where people will for some reason @ mention you in the post comments. Since you can’t do anything about these posts, I can’t really help there. But, I do recommend you block the user who mentioned you. Then block the person with the spam post. Then report the spam post as being a scam or spam. You can access all these options from the three-dot button on the posts and profiles.

Jenn Herman

www.jennstrends.com Instagram: jenns_trends

INSTAGRAM


Facebook Now Ranks Live Videos Higher in the News Feed

Plus A Quick Guide on How to Use Facebook Live Video

T

he Facebook News Feed is designed to deliver the best, most relevant content from the people and Pages you’re closest to. Even if that content was posted a few hours ago. That approach isn’t a great fit with Live video, though. It doesn’t matter if a video was broadcast live if you missed it and had to catch a replay. To counter this Facebook have made some updates to the way the News Feed works when it comes to displaying Live video content. Facebook wants to draw attention to Live video broadcasts in-the-moment, and the data appears to show that Live content will keep users attention for longer. In a blog post, Facebook shared that people spend more than 3x more time watching a Facebook Live video on average compared to other video content. So what does this means for the Facebook News Feed?

ified profiles before eventually opening it up to all iOS users in January 2016. Android support followed in February.

What is Facebook Live video? Live video lets you share what you’re seeing in real time — whether you’re visiting a new place, cooking your favorite recipe, or just want to share some thoughts. No matter where you are, Live lets you bring your friends, family, and followers, right next to you to experience what’s happening together. Facebook launched Live for celebrities in August 2015 and gradually started rolling it out to influencers with Ver-

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To share live video, tap on Update Status and then select the Live Video icon. If you’d like, you can write a quick description and choose the audience that you want to share with before going live. Rather than notify all your friends or fans when you broadcast, Facebook will only


send a push notification to close friends, people who recently interacted with your Page, or those who have subscribed to your Live videos. During your broadcast, you’ll see the number of viewers, the names of friends who are tuning in and a real-time stream of comments. Broadcasts can be no longer than 30 minutes, and when you end your broadcast, it will be saved on your Timeline like any other video. Mark Zuckerburg has been using a big advocate of Live and sees it as “a way for people to have a more authentic and intimate experience sharing about their lives.”

3 quick-fire Live video best practices 1. Build anticipation Letting your fans and followers know when you’ll be going Live is a great way to build interest and excitement ahead of your broadcast.

2. Write a compelling headline before you start broadcasting A compelling headline can go a long way to convincing people to tune into your broadcast. The below example from Mark Zuckerberg is a great one. Asking fans to comment to ask a question gives a clear CTA and a reason to tune in:

How will this affect the News Feed? The Facebook News Feed is constantly evolving as Facebook discover what signals help them show the most relevant content to each user. When people first started watching and sharing video, Facebook listened to user feedback to discover what signals they should follow in order to show people more of the videos they want to see and fewer of the videos they don’t. At first, they updated News Feed ranking to take into account how many people watched a video and how long people watched for. Over time, Facebook learned that certain actions people take on a video, such as choosing to turn on sound or making the video full screen, are good signs they wanted to see that video, even if they didn’t decide to like it. Since the Live feature has been rolled out to more users, Facebook Live video has become increasingly popular and more and more people, and Pages are creating and watching videos in real-time. With Live’s popularity in mind, Facebook has decided to start treating Live video differently in the News Feed, as explained in recent blog post: “Now that more and more people are watching Live videos, we are considering Live Videos as a new content type—different from normal videos—and learning how to rank them for people in News Feed. As a first step, we are making a small update to News Feed so that Facebook Live videos are more likely to appear higher in News Feed when those videos are actually live, compared to after they are no longer live.” This News Feed update should mean people are more likely to see Facebook Live streams while they’re still in-progress. This provides a much more engaging experience as viewers can comment and interact with the broadcaster in-the-moment.

“The data appears to show that Live content keeps users attention for longer.” Over to you

3. Ask viewers to subscribe At some point in your broadcast, draw users attention to the subscribe button in the right-hand corner of your video. If someone taps this, they will be notified when you kick-off any broadcasts in the future.

Live video is an incredible opportunity to connect with your audience. And with its prioritization in the News Feed, it could be a great medium to break through the noise and grab attention. Live video is currently available to individuals and selected Pages, with it being rolled out to everyone soon. Now could be a great time to start thinking about how you can get the most out of Facebook Live, maybe taking fans backstage at your company and showing them behind the scenes, a weekly Q&A session or even product demos to accompany launches. A few possibilities for Live video content could be taking fans backstage at your company and showing them behind the scenes; weekly Q&A sessions or even product demos to accompany launches.

Ash Read bufferapp.com

FACEBOOK LIVE


Instagram

7 WAYS YOU’RE NOT USING INSTAGRAM but should be

W

hether you’re new to Instagram or a seasoned user, there’s little doubt that you’ve taken the time to explore its features. Although Instagram is fairly intuitive and its user-friendly interface lends itself to business owners, there are plenty of less obvious features to help you manage your account. Here are seven lesser-known features from inside the app.

1. Check out your followers’ activity

Instagram is brimming with inspirational accounts and people. But don’t limit your inspiration to your newsfeed. Branch out and see what’s caught the attention of your followers with the activity features. Click on the heart

icon, the same feed where you can see your account’s likes and comments, and swipe left. From here, you can see what your followers have liked and followed. Not only will this feature allow you to see which influencers are inspiring your customers, but you can also potentially connect with these individuals to grow your own account.

2. Organize your filters

Time is money, and you don’t want to spend it scrolling through Instagram filters. Make your filter selection process more efficient by organizing your filter options. Scroll to the end of your filter choices and click on the gear. You can then slide your favorite filters to the top, and unselect the filters you don’t use.

Save yourself scrolling time, and consider how you can use organized filters to create a more consistent feed.

3. Check in with your followers

Fostering strong relationships with followers and potential customers is essential to growing a successful business on Instagram. Instagram makes it easy for you to stay in touch with accounts you’ve engaged with. Go to the gear in the top right corner of your profile page. From here, scroll down to Account and click on “Posts You’ve Liked.” While you never want to spam someone with irrelevant comments, checking in is a good way to engage with followers outside of your feed.

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4. Add locations to your photo

Aside from hashtags, geotags are another #InstaAwesome way to get more eyeballs on your content. Much like a hashtag, geotags allow you to curate your content into a specific location hub. Even if you’ve already posted the image, you can go back and add a geotag. Click on the three dots in the top right corner of your image. You can then choose from the pre-selected geotag options, or search for another location. Not only will this put you on the radar of other local businesses, but it can potentially bring in customers who are already exploring geotags in your area.

5. Use Instagram instead of Yelp

There’s little doubt that you’ve seen foodie themed hashtags on your favorite Instagram accounts, often using #Foodie or #FoodPorn. With its emphasis on high-quality visual content, Instagram has quickly become the go-to app for restaurants. But if you’re traveling or just looking to try something new, Instagram allows you to get a behind-the-scenes tour of your favorite dining spots. Unlike Yelp, which relies on testimonials and word-of-mouth, Instagram gives you a visual reference for the customer experience. Even on the go, general hashtags (like #Coffee), allow you a sneak peek into the local businesses in your surrounding area.

6. Switch to a business account

If you really want to leverage Instagram for your business, you need to make the switch to an Instagram business account. Introduced earlier this year, this new feature allows you to sync, examine, and more easily manage your Instagram account. With a goal of opening up communication between customers and businesses, you can track the engagement on each

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of your posts and even see an overview of your followers (age, gender, etc.). Since the analytics are mobile-facing, it’s easy to get an analytics snapshot even if you’re on the go. Don’t just post and go. Get a deeper insight into how you can better manage your Instagram with the business account feature.

7. Untag photos

As a business owner, you want to keep a careful eye on the content that’s shared on your wall and the images you’re tagged in. Were you tagged by a spammer? Did someone share an unflattering photo you don’t want your followers to see? You can easily remove the tag by clicking on the photo and selecting “hide your profile.” While you don’t want to remove yourself from every picture, you are trying to build relationships after all, it’s important to make sure the content you’re tagged in is a good representative of your brand. Reputation is everything in business, and Instagram is no exception.

“TIME IS MONEY, AND YOU DON’T WANT TO SPEND IT SCROLLING THROUGH INSTAGRAM FILTERS.”

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BONUS TIP

If your content is highly engaging, there’s a good chance you’ll receive lots of comments. Don’t fret about responding to each comment individually. Instead, use a mass response to easily engage with multiple followers. Swipe left on each individual you want to respond to, and they will each pull into one comment thread. Although you don’t want to leave comments that are overly general. This is a great way to make sure you are still engaging with your members beyond your original post. If you want to feel like an #InstaPro, you need to make sure you’re utilizing all of Instagram’s features. With a little time and focus, you will find that Instagram is designed perfectly to support your business, whether large or small.

“SEE WHAT’S CAUGHT THE ATTENTION OF YOUR FOLLOWERS WITH THE ACTIVITY FEATURES.” Susan B. Zimmerman

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www.suebzimmerman.com Instagram: theinstagramexpert

INSTAGRAM


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Social Media

You’re Trying to Grow Followers on the

WRONG SOCIAL PLATFORM?

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ollowers! Followers! Followers! That’s what everyone wants, right? We start a Facebook Page or Twitter account and immediately think somehow it’s going to explode with growth—and millions of followers will eat up our content and buy from us. Does that actually happen? Maybe.. maybe not. What if you’re trying to grow a following on a social site—yet none of your ideal customers are on that site? I may love Instagram as a user—but are the people there interested in buying my product? Let’s look at some stats to find out.

Using this data—we can compare usage by age, gender, household income and education levels.

Social Media Users by Gender and Age After looking at the age and gender of these users—it becomes evident that Facebook by far is the most widely used social media app on mobile devices. Notice that Millennial and Gen X women are using it the most! It’s no shocker here that Pinterest is mainly used by Millennial women and hardly by men at all. Baby Boomer men are the main users of Google+ but hardly use Instagram, Twitter or Pinterest. The only social platform used more by men than women is Twitter.

Social Media Users by Platform In a recent study—RealityMine.com used their passive mobile metering tool to find out which demographic of people use which social platform. These results looked at 2,121 American users who have at least 1 social media app on their mobile device. The “big 5” looked at in this study were: • Facebook • Twitter • Instagram • Google+ • Pinterest

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Social Media Users by Household Income The income chart was quite interesting—and the most shocking honestly. Most users in this study were in the $50,000 to $74,999 income bracket. Over a third of Pinterest users fell into this income level.


The odd stat to me was how many from each platform were in the lower income bracket of $24,999 or less. (Google+ is the largest here.)

would likely be a waste of time for me. Maybe you have a product that costs $1,000 to purchase. Looking at the stats above—you might be smart to focus on Pinterest since those users seem to have a higher income level over the other social platforms. If you’re trying to sell a hair loss product to men— you’d probably want to ignore Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. In this example—put your focus on Facebook and Google+ where all the Baby Boomer men are. Often I see businesses trying to build a following and a business on a social platform where none of their ideal clients are. That is a waste of time and terribly frustrating. Throw away the old adage of “be everywhere on social media”—it’s totally false. Instead—“be where your customers and potential customers are.” POST RELEVANT CONTENT

Education Level of Social Media Users A whopping 35% of those studied were shown to have “some college but no degree.” Maybe this explains why so many were below the 25K per year annual income in the graph above! Instagram led the pack of those without a high school diploma—explains all the selfies maybe?? :P

How to Apply these Stats to Your Business These stats are fun to look at—but how will they help you grow your social media presence?

In addition to these stats helping you choose the correct social platforms to be on—they should also help you craft your content for the various platforms. This is what ultimately leads to intense, targeted growth. You want to always keep your brand’s image and style in mind when posting content. But you should also make sure it appeals to your target audience! At Post Planner—we know the most active people on our Facebook page are women between 25-54 years of age. A whopping 74% of Facebook users that engage with our content are women! Now that I know this—I make darn sure all of the content we post to Facebook appeals to women. Not doing so would be foolish. And honestly speaking, 3 years ago we were foolish! Back then, we were just a few guys—and we posted like guys—yet we couldn’t figure out why we weren’t getting much engagement. As soon as we paid closer attention to our Insights—we found women were the most engaged, so we changed how we posted. The results have been great! Our page in September of 2015 had a weekly average of over 8 million people! And that’s with about 170,000 Likes. Why? Because we used our Viral Photos tool to unearth proven content that women would like. Without knowing this predictive info—we’d be purely making a guess—and mainly posting things that appeal to us (which could kill our page!). EMBRACE STATS IF YOU WANT TO GROW Ask anyone and you’ll find out I hate stats. I’m not a numbers guy—and I completely glaze over when someone starts to talk about conversion rates, percentages, etc. My brain doesn’t work that way (maybe you are like that too). But I know that if I don’t pay attention to which social platform people are on (and who is engaged on my pages)—I’ll fail miserably. So take into account which social platforms you should be on—and then start crafting posts towards those who are following you (or who you want to follow you). THIS is how you will experience exponential GROWTH.

BE WHERE YOUR CUSTOMERS ARE! Knowing which social platform is used by different demographics is crucial to your business. For example—I run a local bounce house business and my main customer base is women aged 25-40. After looking at these graphs—I can see that Facebook should be my main focus (and perhaps Instagram and Pinterest). Twitter and Google+

Scott Ayres postplanner.com @scottayres

SOCIAL MEDIA


THE INSIDERS

Industry leading agency & network executives share their insights on the influencer industry, their predictions for 2017 and what they would change if they could in this candid Q&A session. 24

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Influencer marketing inspires an ongoing conversation and is an ever-evolving industry. While marketers work to identify what their programs need to look like, agencies and brands alike recognize the significance of these programs. Krista Carnes and Alecia Dantico of Inspira Marketing Group agree; they share that “brands are really starting to embrace influencer content programs as the paid media channel they are—not just an addon, afterthought component of PR. The ability to laser-target consumers and generate strong engagement via social content creation and sharing from the influencer’s personal point-of-view consistently produces solid ROI - and brands are noticing!” What is interesting to note is that the further these programs and initiatives evolve, the more brands and agencies are understanding the need for actual engagement. While true celebrity and high-profile endorsements can go a long way, influencer marketing initiatives can no longer rely on numbers alone. The true significance of an influencer’s results depend on multiple factors, such as engagement and actual push to purchase. This creates the need of working with those with experience to achieve a truly successful campaign, rather than the “spray and play” that some have tried to join in the trend. What truly leads to success is blending the expectations of influencers and brands and agencies alike. Many influencers often feel as if brands and agencies do not necessarily appreciate the value that they bring to their campaigns and messaging. However, influencers also need to provide brands and agencies with measurable performance analytics to really “wow” them with results. One of the most consistent items that brands and agencies agree upon wanting to see is strong reporting from influencers. Amy Binder is the CEO of RF|Binder, a full-service public relations agency based in New York with an office in Boston, and bureaus in Chicago, Philadelphia, and South Florida. As she states, “Creating a short report highlighting results from the campaign such as engagement, video views, or audience comments will show you go the extra mile and understand that measurement is key in all relationships. Marketers need to put together reports anyway, so providing that will save them time and make them remember you.” It’s important to keep this in mind when trying to develop long-term relationships with agencies and brands. As influencer marketing relationships continue to evolve, it will be important for conversation to continue around the best practices on both sides. Online media is constantly changing, so campaigns and partnerships will as well. The more amazing results that brands see from hard-working influencers, the more budget and programs they will continue to see. Here, we delve into the mind of the marketers behind some of the most powerful influencer programs to learn their thoughts on the state of influencer marketing and what they foresee in the year ahead.


Seeking Cooperative, Integrated Solutions between Influencers and Brands

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rands are really starting to embrace influencer content programs as the paid media channel they are—not just an add-on, afterthought component of PR. The ability to laser-target consumers and generate strong engagement via social content creation and sharing from the influencer’s personal point-of-view consistently produces solid ROI— and brands are noticing!

Q

How have you changed your marketing strategies on social media?

*As an experiential agency, we now incorporate social media and influencer programming into most of our integrated program strategies to drive success

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with every experience we create—both online and offline—to help achieve the client’s goals. Sometimes that process is straightforward—i.e. contest entries or email capture. Other times, when we don’t see social or other digital aspects in a program, we’ll go back to the client to learn more about what kinds of data and info their teams—internal and other agency partners—can best use so we can craft our custom experiences to include those datacapture elements. Tapping into the strength of the “power middle” influencer—that blogger, for example, who may not have the highest traffic stats but who consistently generates significant engagement via likes, comments, shares and other conversation sparks—we’re incorporating their talents throughout our programs by helping us prepromote our upcoming events or mobile tour stops, attending the events to serve as our real-time social media correspondents, and then creating recap coverage to help share and amplify the experience with their wider network.

Q

What do you see becoming a thing of the past first?

*Finally, as an industry, we’re going to silence the notion that the number of followers is an accurate gauge of influence for social media content creators. It’s simply not true and the wider social media ecosystem is more attuned than ever to the fakery behind many so-called influencer profiles. Still, there are a lot of sketchy service providers and technology peddlers who are invested in that maintaining that false reality—even as holistic measurement and metrics continue to discredit it. Influencer marketing is a true blend of art and science. Influencer identification tools are just that—tools. They aren’t magic. Bringing an influencer program to life requires deep understanding of how everyone can benefit from the partnership—the brand, the agency, and the influencer herself—and then orchestrating a seamless, measurable process with demonstrable results.


“Digital influencers—the true ones who are dedicated to their craft and their audience— are the new media machine.” There’s nuance required and too many marketers still think, “oh, we’ll just get an intern to do that.” That attitude needs to become a thing of the past. Digital influencers—the true ones who are dedicated to their craft and their audience— are the new media machine. They move people to action and that can be harnessed for amazing results if done well.

Q

What do you think will still be fresh and exciting next year in the marketing world?

Experience-centric marketing will continue to grow and become the focus for many marketers because the heart of experiences is consumer connection and content—two essential elements for breaking through all the digital “noise” consumers face every day. In addition, social media algorithms are getting smarter all the time, so brands must be associated with great content and content creators in order to reach their ideal targets in meaningful ways that compel action. What’s the recipe for the best experiences for consumers and brands? Finding the right talent mix of strategy, production, communications and creative—whether that’s with one integrated agency or bringing

Krista Carnes

VP Content Strategy Inspira Marketing Group inspiramarketing.com

Alecia Dantico

General Manager, Chicago Inspira Marketing Group inspiramarketing.com

together an interagency team that all play nice in the sandbox together.

Q

What one aspect of social media or content marketing would you change?

It would be great if brand teams would bring influencer and content marketers to the table from inception—during the strategy and planning stages of a fully integrated program. We need to be part of the strategy from the beginning, rather than brought in at the last minute to make a program “social” or add “content marketing” to the mix. Ultimately, the results that we achieve for our clients will be stronger if the end-to-end program is planned at the onset—from the experience to the media to the influencer amplification. Social media and content marketing necessitate a sophisticated planning cycle, and too many marketers still think, “We’ll just get an intern to do that.” That attitude needs to become a thing of the past. Digital influencers—the true ones who are dedicated to their craft and their audience— are the new media machine. They move people to action and that can be harnessed for amazing brand results.

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things an influencer can do to wow an agency or brand HAVE A MEDIA KIT Make it easy to know you as a potential marketing partner— what brands have you worked with? Any agency or writing background? Do you have a case study? Please share all of your business contact information on your kit and in our emails. Signatures are your friend.

BE PROACTIVE ABOUT BRANDS YOU LOVE We often ask influencers, “What is your dream project or brand partner?” So many don’t have an answer, it amazes us. If we’re in the business of bringing authenticity to brand content, what can authentic brand or product stories can you tell—or shout from the rooftops?

SUPPORT YOUR TEAM If you’re participating in a campaign, other bloggers are likely part of the program too. Stand out from the crowd by supporting the entire collective promotion—share, comment (with disclosure), and pay attention to the community dialogue. A rising tide really does lift all boats.


Communicating with Purpose

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don’t think our relationships with brands have changed that much in the last year. What has changed is the understanding among brands that they must engage authentically and transparently with their stakeholders. Communicating with purpose has never been truer for a brand. This phenomenon is being driven by hyper aware consumers, always-on social media and a multigenerational call for more purpose-driven organizations. A rapidly evolving awareness of and engagement about key environmental, social and governance [ESG] issues and how they impact a brand have been an equally important driving force for how brands engage their consumers 28

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and other stakeholders. Based on how central any of these might be for a brand – from packaging for a manufacturer to transparency and innovation for a startup in the food sector – we are increasingly seeing a eager demand from brands to seamlessly weave these issues across their communication efforts.

Q

How have you changed your marketing strategies on social media?

To keep stakeholders and consumers engaged and truly invested in brands, the communication sector is focusing on how we can help brands tell authentic stories consistently. This requires a comprehensive look at the entire ecosystem of channels and media to ensure we’re focusing our efforts on engagement vs. infomercials. As attention spans narrow but demand for authentic storytelling widens, for instance, we are working with brands closely on

using more bite-sized conversations and factoids as well as smarter use of visuals and video to tell stories that are vivid, authentic and relatable. We’re also investing more today in understanding how influencers behave, talk and engage with brands. That includes influencer research and engagement, sentiment testing, an enhanced emphasis on social and digital media analysis to help us evaluate what people are searching for, how they are engaging and where they are likely to interact most effectively with brands. We also have a Knowledge & Insights team of specialists who help us decode all the data into meaningful strategies and insights into storytelling, issues management and communication tactics.

Q

What do you think will still be fresh and exciting next year in the marketing world?

While the idea of a purpose-driven company is not new, understanding how to optimize one for higher performance is


nascent and taking root slowly but surely across corporate America. With consumers much more aware today of brands trying to sell them something, offering new story arcs that show the brand’s mission and purpose gives them a reason to feel good about their purchasing decisions and when done authentically, associate with the brand. Purpose defines how the brand behaves and performs. Purpose helps a business stay core to its very being – to solve the problem it was started to address - whether that’s social, environmental or economic. For instance, a large airline may make their money from helping people travel and get from one destination to another but it also has a purpose of being the safest, most affordable, innovative and most environmentally friendly aviation company possible. Performing purposefully also helps companies recruit and retain top talent as well as engage more authentically with its ecosystem of stakeholders. With a multitude of research studies telling us that millennial audiences especially care for purpose-led companies and tend to align their purchasing – and recruitment – decisions based on brand behavior. Even influencers today can find value in aligning themselves with brands based on its causes and purpose. At RFIBinder, our Corporate and Brand Purpose practice works with clients across industries on the many threads of CSR and sustainability – from nonprofit partnerships and cause marketing to environmental sustainability strategy and communications.

Q

What do you see becoming a thing of the past first?

The aspect of “real-time marketing” or trying to own a cultural event has been fading and will continue to fade in importance. A perfect example is the Super Bowl. There is so much noise and conversation around the event that it’s hard to stand out and make an impact as

Amy Binder CEO, RFBinder rfbinder.com

a brand. That is why many marketers are choosing to launch campaigns earlier and earlier in order to retain attention. Overall, however, the focus should continue to be on driving the conversation forward and sustaining it over a long period of time. That’s why there is increasingly a need for an integrated approach to public relations that considers how all channels can work together to build and sustain momentum.

Q

What one aspect of social media or content marketing would you change?

A better understanding of who is engaging with content and what they do next to drive a call to action, whether that’s behavior change, advocacy or a purchasing decision. At times, marketers are at the mercy of how much data platforms such as Facebook or Snapchat provide regarding content performance. Measuring the performance of content, whether it’s an article, video, or photo has gone beyond just the number of eyeballs on it, but what the next action is taken by the viewer. With advances in digital technology, content has become even more interactive. 360-degree videos and VR can provide new range of experiences. Graphics no longer need to be static. Instagram introduced a new zoom feature just last week, which can provide a new kind of experience as consumers can zoom in and look at hidden details in the image. We have been working more closely with bloggers and through stronger relationships have been able to access their backend analytics to measure how well a campaign post performed. Our Knowledge and Insights team continually investigates new approaches to measuring campaign success and what tools are available. For instance, there are more tools available that can provide image recognition software, so posts that feature a brand or company logo will also be counted in social conversations.

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things an influencer can do to wow an agency or brand KNOW YOUR BRAND Marketers and brands are becoming smarter about investing in influencers so it’s good to show how you stand out. Make sure your content shows personality along with great photos. Get to know your community so you can tell brands the type of audiences you reach.

STAND BY CONVICTIONS AND BELIEFS Be willing to be informed before you decide to engage with or on behalf of the brand. Your distinction and value is not just in who you engage with but also how and how closely it aligns with your personal brand and values. So show that.

MEASURE AND PROVIDE RESULTS Creating a short report highlighting results from the campaign such as engagement, video views, or audience comments will show you go the extra mile and understand that measurement is key in all relationships. Marketers need to put together reports anyway, so providing that will save them time and make them remember you.


Embracing Constant Change

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fter all these years of working in the influencer marketing space, brands seem to finally get it! Not only do they get it, they are fully embracing influencer marketing. It’s as if a light bulb went off at brand headquarters and they had the aha moment we’ve all been waiting for – which is that influencers can talk about their brand in ways that are authentic, persuasive, and that impact the bottom line. We’re seeing more and more brands engage with influencer marketing and show up with strategically planned marketing budgets. A recent study by Tomoson indicates that 60% of marketers are planning to increase their influencer marketing 30

iBlog magazine SEPT 2016

spend. We’ve seen both a greater volume of campaigns coming in the door and more creative variety in the campaign concepts. Brands are game to take more risks in how they reach their audience. It used to be brands just wanted “bloggers,” and the social shares were the icing on the cake. Today, we are getting more platform-specific campaigns. Even conservative brands are experimenting on new platforms. We just did a Snapchat influencer campaign for Cox Communications, which was innovative and experimental in nature. Instagram is more popular than ever because of the visual nature of the platform. It’s a great tool for contest-oriented campaigns, which we’ve been able to produce for brands like Mattress Firm and Macy’s.

Q

How have you changed your marketing strategies on social media?

Any good marketing strategy relates back to a clearly defined goal. We work with so many different brands, each with a different objective and approach to measuring success. Before we talk strategy, we spend time with our clients to get a good, clear idea of what a victory will look like. Once we know that, we can reverse engineer into a smart strategic approach. We change our marketing strategies all the time to adapt to what will drive the bottom line for our clients. We focus on metrics beyond just “impressions” since driving impressions does not necessarily fulfill goals. Are you looking for sales of a particular product? Then let’s come up with a specific URL whereby we can track ROI. Attendance? What number do you want to hit? Awareness? Are there specific SEO terms you’d like to see related to your product or brand? There is no one strategic formula for success other than a mutual understanding


“At the end of the day, storytelling is always on trend. Since we lived in caves, we’ve been driven to tell stories.” of goals and leveraging a tailored approach to getting there.

Q

What trends do you think will continue into 2017?

Snapchat is not going away! It’s so clever, so snarky, so now and so popular with youth. Instagram stories will continue to evolve and add more dynamic items to compete with Snapchat, but they each will stand on their own, just as Facebook will continue to be the 800-pound gorilla in the social universe. And of course, influencer marketing on all of these channels is coming into its own, so we’ll hear more and more about influencers and their impact in the coming year. At the end of the day, storytelling is always on trend. Since we lived in caves, we’ve been driven to tell stories. We love them, we crave them, and any social media platform that helps us develop a rich narrative storyline will continue to be hot stuff.

Q

What do you see becoming a thing of the past first?

Traditional advertising is already a “thing of the past.” We have evolved beyond a world where advertisers can broadcast messages to a conversational world. Brands that understand the power of building community and encouraging their best advocates to share their stories are winning. Nielsen reports that the

most credible form of advertising comes from the people we trust. Digital word of mouth will soon replace traditional push-advertising. I love the fact that more commercials today feature real people instead of scripted actors reading lines about brands. Smart retailers are featuring influencers instead of models in their catalogs and online publications.

Q

What one aspect of social media or content marketing would you change?

The truth is that some brands still question the value of social media-related marketing because it seems too cluttered, busy, and repetitive. Yes, many brands out there are creating social content that is frankly, boring and irrelevant. The same is true of television, but we don’t question the validity and power of this medium, do we? If I could wave a magic wand, I’d wish that all the brands and all the ads in my social media feeds were only filled with relevant, enriching content, but that’s an unrealistic wish! That said, it’s exciting that we live, work, and play in a medium that has to embrace constant change. Since we opened the doors of our agency in 2009, we’ve seen dramatic, monumental changes in our field. With each shift and each competitor comes improvement. Snapchat has given Instagram a run for their money in good ways, and Instagram had to adapt and become a more video rich, playful platform. So change is good!

LinkedIn Updates Desktop Publishing

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2. MEASURE RICHER MULTIMEDIA AND OPTIONS PROVIDE RESULTS It isCreating now easier ever to a shortthan report highlightadd, multimeingmove resultsand fromresize the campaign engagement, video diasuch withasthis new update. This views,users or audience comments allows to share more will show youcontent go the extra engaging with mile theirand understand that measurement is audience. key in all relationships. Marketers need to put together reports 3. anyway, A MORE BEAUTIFUL so providing that will READING EXPERIENCE save them time and make them With more seamless design and remember you.

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Danica Kombol

Everywhere Agency everywhereagency.com


In it to Win it: Find Your Influence Founders Share Their Wisdom

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ou miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.” This time-tested and quote-worthy philosophy from Wayne Gretzky has grown beyond the sports world and infiltrated almost all aspects of business, including the world of entrepreneurs. After all, Jamie Reardon and Cristine Vieira would not be here with iBlog today if they hadn’t taken their big shot—and they didn’t miss. Reardon and Vieira built the influencer marketing technology platform Find Your Influence (FYI) from the ground up together, growing from an influencer marketing startup to the leading SaaS influencer marketing platform in the space: connecting more than 32

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100,000 high-value influencers to over 10,000 campaigns with 500 strategic brand partners. The result? Influencer marketing is now measurable, scalable and profitable. Reardon and Vieira share their winning wisdom and insight on the impact of marketing, today and in the future.

Q

How have your relationships changed with brands in the last year?

While it has been trending upwards for the past two years or so, the demand for influencer marketing has dramatically increased over the last 12 months. Brands of all shapes and sizes are asking how they can integrate influencer marketing—and even better, many companies are including influencer marketing as part of an annual plan, and not just an afterthought.

By applying a strategic element to a yearlong plan, brands are seeing exponential growth in brand awareness, brand affinity and intent-to-purchase, which ultimately leads to more conversions.

Q

How have you changed your marketing strategies on social media?

We’re fortunate to work with a large number of strategic brand partners, each of varying sizes and needs. Our focus has shifted from tactical implementation to strategic integration, helping our partners to develop an integrated strategy, while also focusing on the best ways to target and engage your consumers for each different social platform. The way you speak to your audience (and the audience that you can reach) is often different for each channel, and it’s important to keep that in mind, while also keeping messaging consistent. Social


“Focus on where your audience consumes content and the behaviors they exhibit.”

media changes are always going to keep us on our toes!

Q

What trends do you think will continue into 2017?

Influencer marketing and content integrations will continue to expand this upcoming year, as the measurable impact of traditional advertising decreases. With more than 200 million people now using ad blockers, brands have to find new ways to stay in front of their target audience through authentic content integrations, so building and maintaining relationships with influencers is key. Authentic, SEOrich content offers an algorithm-busting connection with your target audience.

Q

What do you see becoming a thing of the past first?

Like it or not, traditional “e-blasts” and unfiltered email marketing is on it’s way out. We live in an era of custom content now, and creative messaging is more effective than an impersonal ad or a mass email.

People are more interested in consuming original content and news through other media, and this change is impacting every aspect of people’s lives. For example, instead of reading ads or just walking into stores, more than half of consumers are consulting blogs or social media before making a purchase. Is your brand’s content in the right place at the right time?

Q

What one aspect of social media or content marketing would you change?

With brands looking to authentically connect and hyper-target consumers, there’s a greater need for psychographic targeting, vs. just demographic only. So, we’d wish that more people would acknowledge that need and incorporate psychographic targeting in their marketing efforts. This kind of targeting offers brands a different way in which to understand their audience and connect; instead of focusing on who your audience is, you would instead focus on where your audience consumes content and the behaviors they exhibit. This is only going to become more relevant in digital marketing.

Cristine Vieira

Co-Founder & President

Jamie Reardon Co-Founder & CEO

Find Your Influence findyourinfluence.com

3

things an influencer can do to wow an agency or brand GET CREATIVE! How does your content stand out? Images and personality, please.

ALWAYS PRIORITIZE QUALITY A high-quality look and feel catches both the brand and agencies’ attention before anything else. Look professional, be professional.

FOCUS ON KEY PERFORMANCE METRICS At the end of the day, brands will focus on total reach and engagement, along with clicks. Engagement will always matter more than reach.


Evolution: Boden Public Relations stays ahead of the curve

I

n the past year, as an agency we’ve grown and evolved from a boutique Hispanic public relations and social media agency into a national Public Relations and Social Media Agency, so naturally our relationships with our clients has evolved as well. In 2016, we launched our social listening service, Escucha®, for McDonald's USA, helping the brand identify and engage with relevant Hispanic consumer and influencer conversations to build relationships and brand equity. We listen to the top influencers across several categories – from entertainment to sports – to discover what’s trending and how the brand can leverage these listening insights. We also engage directly with consumers who are participating in brandrelevant conversations, helping move the needle toward brand advocacy. This year we have also worked with brands to expand and highlight their commitment to the communities they serve — bringing

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people together and engaging in bigger conversations to do good. Our work is deliberate and thoughtful in our ability to craft compelling stories that drive or are part of trending, real-time conversations across segments and across cultures for the brands we represent.

Q

How have you changed your marketing strategies on social media?

Our social strategies have always been rooted in Hispanic insights. We build equity that is culturally relevant and engaging content that is in-culture, as opposed to in-language. We also work closely with our media partners to explore new and innovative ways to reach Hispanic consumers on social. One way our social approach has changed – and it’s changing industry wide – is with measurement and analytics. Across the board, we’re analyzing more than just reach and impressions. We’re looking at what content elicits positive reactions versus negative ones

– what’s driving engagement. We’re analyzing comments to determine sentiment. And we’re using those analytics and insights to build and inform our social strategies. It’s an everchanging process and we have to be nimble enough to change our social approach if it’s not generating the right results.

Q

What trends do you think will continue into 2017?

Live video content will continue to transform the social realm – it's instant, raw and authentic and we're seeing it across many platforms including Facebook Live, Snapchat, and Instagram Stories. It’s still relatively new for many marketers – a bit risky even – but those exploring live content through social will be uniquely positioned to reach Millennials and GenZ. Social listening will also continue to be key for marketers. More and more, social platforms are allowing brands to listen closely


"We see overly promotional posts – whether from brands or influencers – becoming a thing of the past." to what consumers want and don't want – not just to hashtags, but to emojis and photo content too. With social listening, brands can adjust and react in real time to consumers’ needs and relevant trends. It allows brands to speak directly to the needs of their audiences, identify one-to-one engagement opportunities and inform content strategies.

Q

What do you see becoming a thing of the past first?

We see overly promotional posts – whether from brands or influencers – becoming a thing of the past. In fact, a recent study by Sprout Social found that 60% of users who follow a brand are annoyed with too many promotions. Consumers instead want to see content on social channels that tell stories and speak to their individual wants and needs. For brands, this presents an opportunity to dig deeper – to identify the most relevant, powerful stories to drive brand reputation and advocacy. For influencers, it’s an opportunity to collaborate with brands to tell those stories, all while staying true to their own personalities and audiences. Our social approach focuses on creating core story arcs driven by brands’ communications and marketing priorities. Built into those core story arcs are two key components: 1) remarkable moments that generate peaks in excitement and buzz and 2) everyday content that seamlessly weaves in brand messages in an ongoing basis.

Q

What one aspect of social media or content marketing would you change?

It would be to develop more authentic storytelling in unique and engaging ways, leveraging relevant channels – and exploring new ones – and collaborating with the right influencers. For influencer content marketing specifically, we’ve always said, “don’t hire influencers – invest in them.” Instead of taking a one-off approach to influencer marketing, brands have an opportunity to build mutually beneficial relationships, from which both brand and influencer reap rewards beyond a contract period. These partnerships set the stage for future work and new opportunities that might otherwise not have been explored. One example is the relationship between McDonald’s and Maiah Ocando, which began in summer 2015 with Premios Juventud. Since then, the brand has partnered with Maiah on multiple campaigns, including the 2016 Premios Juventud and All Day Breakfast. But beyond campaign work, we’ve seen added value in the ongoing relationship. Most recently, McDonald’s congratulated Maiah on her wedding anniversary and the influencer shared this on her Snapchat story. It’s the definition of a long-term partnership that continues to evolve and grow with the brand and influencer.

Twitter Implements Updates

TWITTER IS AIMING TO STAY COMPETITIVE WITH OTHER MOBILE MESSAGING SERVICES AND IS CONTINUING TO ROLL OUT UPDATES. 1. READ RECEIPTS.

Similar to other messaging platforms, read receipts allow people to see when others have read their messages. For those who prefer their privacy, there is an opt-out option.

2. LONGER TWEETS. As of September 19, media attachments (images, GIFs, videos, etc.) and quoted tweets will no longer affect the character count, leaving room for more text.

3. WEB LINK PREVIEWS. Finally, direct messages will contain web link previews, allowing users to preview the content before clicking through.

Natalie Boden Boden PR bodenpr.com


You’re already writing about products and brands you love, so why not earn money while doing so? Brands are eager to reach your audience, and we’re here to connect you! Join the Savings.com Affiliate Program and Start Earning Money Today!

“ I love working with Savings.com! Their affiliate dashboard makes it easy to share coupon codes and links to affiliated stores quickly, without having to remember what online store is with what affiliate platform. My favorite part about working with Savings.com is their team- they are great to work with.” - Jessie Alonzo, MoolaSavingMom.com

“ I love Savings.com. They offer great deals on brands that my clients love, which keeps them reading! Savings.com is also exceptionally easy to work with and I value that.” - Myrah Duque, CouponMamacita.com

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affiliate

Making Advertisers

TAKE NOTICE Every day, advertisers are contacted by numerous bloggers hoping for a sponsored post. The proposals normally include the audience size and composition, some profile information, and past clients the bloggers have worked with. This info is great, but if you truly want to get that next gig, prove your value by showing that your audience is not only engaged, but buys. This can make all the difference.

I

f at all possible, make sure the links in a post are affiliate links so you can tap into the reporting information available through the affiliate network’s interface. It should show you the number of clicks, sales and average order value for each advertiser. This enables you to offer something truly special to the advertiser; now, in addition to the number of views/shares/retweets generated by a post, you can help them see how you brought sales as well. For example, perhaps you received $500 for a sponsored post, which your analytics showed received xxxx impressions. Now if you can also say that this post resulted in 150 clicks which converted to 15 sales at an average order value of $100 for a total of $1500 in revenue within the first 30-60 days, that gets their hearts beating for sure! You’ve shown that not only can you provide influence, but you can also create immediate sales, which might also lead to repeat sales. You are now their star! Even if you didn’t

“Many advertisers, especially niche ones are excited about working with bloggers, but they need more than just awareness, they need sales too.” generate a fortune in sales, skip the total value and just list the number of sales—this still proves your readers are responsive. When pitching a new prospect, being able to share past results for another advertiser in a similar vertical shows that you are a proven performer. Your media kit will stand out from the others received that day, and your chances of getting a response skyrocket. The information doesn’t have to include the original advertiser by name—just identifying them as “a children’s clothing company, a sports equipment company, an Orlando hotel” is sufficient. This also doesn’t mean that you are obligated to produce the same results for the new advertiser either. It is understood that there are a variety of other factors involved— pricing, product choices, availability, advertiser site usability, etc.—which can affect

the sales from a sponsored post. But sharing this information lets the advertiser know that you generate results, which transforms you from a risk to an opportunity in their eyes. As the list of sponsored posts grows, the list of documented results will too, further confirming the value of your followers. Many advertisers, especially some of the smaller or niche ones, are excited about working with bloggers, but they need more than just awareness, they need sales too. Demonstrating your ability to generate both can make all the difference in getting your next sponsored post.

Jeannine Crooks AffiliateWindow.com @Jeannine_Crooks

AFFILITATE


LinkedIn

Viveka Von Rosen

linkedintobusiness.com @LinkedInExpert

HIDDEN PROSPECTS 4 STRATEGIES FOR TURNING YOUR LINKEDIN FANS AND FOLLOWERS INTO CUSTOMERS

You know that LinkedIn can be a great place to find, connect and engage with prospects. But are you sure you are making the most of all the features? Even experienced LinkedIn users miss some prospecting opportunities. Check out these four “hidden” LinkedIn features you might’ve overlooked that are home to some pretty hot prospects!

1 Saved Searches When you do an Advanced search on LinkedIn, you have the ability to save that search. (You get three saved searches with the free account and 7+ with the premium account.) Are you making the most of your saved searches? Or using them at all? First of all, make sure when you were doing a search on LinkedIn that you were getting the best results possible by using the Advanced search feature on LinkedIn. You’ll get pretty decent results if you use some or all of the search fields available. I regularly use the Keywords, Title, and Location fields

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to hone and improve my search results. (This is especially important if you have a free account because LinkedIn will limit your monthly search results.) Once you get search results that seem on target to your ideal prospect, click on the Save Search option on the top right your advanced search results. LinkedIn will save that search for you. I recommend changing the name to something you can easily recognize and identify. (For example; marketing NOT opportunities NOT secretary NOT assistant OR VP+marketing or vice + marketing simply becomes a “CMO NYC”) The cool thing is that LinkedIn will send


noticed you viewed my profile on LinkedIn. Would you like to connect so we can more easily engage with each other? I’m happy to answer any questions you might have!” If someone has made themselves anonymous, just forget about them and move on! If you have made yourself anonymous, be aware that you will not be able to use the Who’s Viewed feature with the free account.

3 Super Fans

“If they are a super fan ... they would probably be more than happy to share any content, or promotions, or information you share with them to their audiences.” you an email every week (if you turn your notification on) with new people who fall into your particular search algorithm. Now you have an opportunity to message those first level connections. You’ll be surprised at who shows up and you didn’t even know they held that position or worked at that company! If they are not a first level connection, simply invite those LinkedIn members to connect by click on their name. (Make sure you are signed into LinkedIn first). When you send your invitation, you might write something similar to: “LinkedIn sent me your name as a possible connection. Do you want to connect?”

2 Who’s Viewed Another reason I have a premium account on LinkedIn is so that I can see everyone who’s viewed my profile. Now if you have less than five people a day viewing your profile, this is not an issue. But the more active you get on LinkedIn, the more likely people are to view your profile. And many of those folks are prospects! If the person who’s viewed your profile is not a first level connection, then invite them to connect with the message that reads; “I

Speaking of Settings, did you know that you can get an archive of your data in the Settings section? Why is this important? Because that’s where you find out who your super fans are! When you export and download an archive of your account data, you will get a CSV file of all the people who have endorsed you. All you have to do is sort that file by the members’ names, and you can see who endorsed you and how many times. If someone has endorsed you more than one or two times, they probably really like you! And if they’ve endorsed you up to 50 times, they are either a stalker or a super fan. If they are a super fan and a prospect, you have a much better chance of doing business with them (then someone who doesn’t even know who you are!) Not only that, but they would probably be more than happy to share any content, or promotions, or information you share with them to their audiences. So make sure to go into settings, click on “Getting an Archive of your Data” and then click on the “Change” link. Click on the “Request Archive” button and in few days you’ll have that Excel file. Make sure to check your spam if you don’t receive it. Or just go back into settings to retrieve your archive within 48 hours. Whenever you want to easily find these new connections and prospects, all you have to do is filtered by tag, find the tag, and voila. Now you can message them, share their content, email them or even ask for a phone call. Bonus: you can also count how many endorsements you have in total J If nothing else, that should make your day!

become customers. So make sure that you are reviewing your Publisher Statistics a few times a week to see who’s responding to your posts (and what they are saying.) Of course, if the person who has commented on your article is a first level connection, you can click on their name and send them a message. If the person who has commented on your post is not a first level connection, you can always click on their name and invite them to connect from their profile. Now you have a great excuse! They commented on your post.

Timing If prospecting on LinkedIn has previously been a fruitless experience for you, make sure to try a few or all four of strategies. Every week check your Saved Searches and connect or engage with the prospects LinkedIn sends you. Every day (especially if you have a free account) check who’s viewed your profile and follow up. Keep an eye on your Publisher statistics (at least a few times a week) and reach out to your fans. And at least 1x a month, get an archive of your data and check out who’s endorsed you the most. Reach out to your super fans.

LinkedIn for Good (not Spam) These four strategies are very effective for building your network with key prospects. All I would ask is don’t spam your new connections with sales messages. LinkedIn is all about connecting and engaging and creating real relationships with prospects. Not hard-selling them. Try to create value for your prospects, by being of service, sharing good and value add info with them. And as soon as possible, create real relationships by taking your connection to the left next level with a phone call or meeting.

4 Publisher People If you are creating content through LinkedIn Publisher—chances are you’ve had some people comment and share your content. Are you following up with them? People who take the time to read through and comment on your Posts could most definitely

LINKEDIN


Facebook Live

10 Strategies to take your Facebook marketing to the next level How should brands that rely on Facebook marketing shift strategy in light of Facebook’s latest newsfeed update (which makes brand pages more dependent on users sharing posts with friends)? Facebook, with over 1.7 billion users, is a powerful marketing platform for any business. It allows you to reach consumers on a platform that they are already using every day. But when users told Facebook that they wanted to see more stories from friends and less promotional content, Facebook implemented a news feed update that gave them just that. So what does that mean for your marketing efforts? Businesses now need to work harder to ensure that their content is shareable rather than promotional. We asked ten entrepreneurs to share their best tips to ensure that your content still makes it on the news feed. 1. Be the Supplier for News Breakers

Step back and think about the sharing behavior of your own friends. They always want to be the first to share content that others have not already seen. Be fast and be first to break new stories relevant to your audience. Your Facebook page fans are more likely to share exclusive and engaging content to their own personal audiences if they feel it’s fresh and new. – Anthony Saladino, Kitchen Cabinet Kings 40

iBlog magazine SEPT 2016

2. Stop Selling and Start Engaging

Unless you want to pay Facebook to promote your content, you need to push more content that your audience is likely to share. The more shares and likes you drive, the more reach you get with your content. With Facebook’s recent change, the key is to stop using Facebook to sell and instead use it to educate, entertain and engage your audience. – Kristopher Jones, LSEO.com

3. Pay Facebook

Facebook is a public company. Any updates to its newsfeed algorithm are meant to help the company maximize its return to shareholders. My advice? Play the game. Pay Facebook its advertising dollars to ensure your content gets discovered. The cost to create content (designers, copywriters, etc.) is usually more than advertising. Budget a little extra for Facebook ads to produce your best content ROI. – Brett Farmiloe, Markitors

4. Embed Interactivity

Reduce the number of links that you post on your page and focus on embedding content – articles and videos – into Facebook instead. Since Facebook users prefer to stay on Facebook, giving them content without sending them away will help to guarantee they actually share your content, which will then place you in front of other audiences. Share stories that are informative, not promotional. – Marcela De Vivo, Brilliance


5. Focus on Proven Tactics That Yield More Shares

Tactics like video content and helpful advice are some of the most commonly shared type of posts, so businesses should redirect their content strategy toward these tactics if they haven’t done so already. – Peter Daisyme, Due Invoicing

6. Diversify Your Marketing Strategies

It is not a good idea to be solely dependent on just one marketing platform. In this fast-paced world, change is inevitable when it comes to marketing via various social media platforms. Diversify your marketing strategies across numerous platforms because safety comes in numbers. If changes on one platform don’t suit your business, move your marketing money to another. – Engelo Rumora, List’n Sell Realty

7. Make Ad Campaigns Pop

With social media platforms now “competing for screen time,” companies need to make their advertising campaigns funny or memorable. We always remember those funny Super Bowl commercials, share them and talk about them. Making an emotional connection through storytelling will make potential customers remember your brand and create more buzz. – Nemoy Rau, US Biometrix

9. Make Content Sharable, Then Pay

If you have the right approach, this shouldn’t be a problem. You’re already creating shareable content targeted to the right audience. But even if your content is popular, you’ll have to pay to promote posts to a wider audience. Find out which posts generate the most engagement and pay to promote them. For brands, Facebook isn’t the free ride to huge audiences that it used to be. – Justin Blanchard, ServerMania Inc.

Making an emotional connection through storytelling will make potential customers remember your brand and create more buzz. 10. Provide Value

Facebook is a game changer for any business that can master it. By providing value to the users that share your posts, it will give them an incentive to do so more often. For example, if you have an e-commerce business, offer a coupon code to anyone who shares your post. If you’re providing a service, give the users access to an exclusive blog post for sharing. – Chad Keller, WUDN

8. Network and Be Personal

You need to connect with friends and family on a personal level. Then you can market your services, just like you would in real life. You would not consistently blast your friends and family with announcements of your services, so don’t do it on Facebook either. However, a well-placed announcement for something interesting or important can be effective. – Peter Boyd, PaperStreet Web Design

Zac Johnson ZacJohnson.com

FACEBOOK


Blogging Susan Wenner Jackson

Co-founder, Working Moms Against Guilt @SusanWJackson

STOP DATING YOURSELF

The Case for Keeping Your Content Date-Free I

n the early days of blogs, dates mattered—a lot. That’s because most blogs were some form of an online journal, where the writer expressed experiences and observations of the day. Or the blogger commented on news items, links found elsewhere on the web, the latest viral video to be shared. So the standard blog post URL structure followed the date of its publication: blogname.com/year/ month/date or some variation thereof. And many blogs featured the publication

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date prominently in the design, too. The most recent posts showed up at the top of the home page, with date called out graphically as well as in the permalink. As new content piled on top of old content, blogs built up vast archives of posts. To navigate these archives, readers had to search through a catalog of links by year and then month. But for the most part, older blog posts just settled down like layers of sediment, quietly passing into bloggy oblivion.

BLOGS THAT SHOULD KEEP THEIR DATES A date-focused format and structure still makes sense for news-centric publications. Newspapers, medical and scientific journals, or site whose content relies heavily on timeliness should still include dates. After all, they provide context to the reader, so they know if it’s a hot-off-the-press article or it’s an older view of a subject before some new discovery surfaced.


EVERGREEN CONTENT? GO DATELESS For many lifestyle blogs and publishers, however, dates don’t do much to help you. Yet many blog platforms continue to make a dated post structure the default. Unfortunately, evergreen content that’s labeled with older dates can actually hurt the reader’s experience. Think about it. When you see a pin or tweet and click through to something that was published two years ago, don’t you feel a little … let down? Maybe not entirely consciously. But somehow you feel like the content might not be fresh, trendy or relevant— even if it’s a totally “evergreen” tutorial, essay or list. Also, by organizing the content on your site by date, you could be shortchanging oldies but goodies that still deliver tremendous value to readers. Consider giving your all-time most popular posts top billing, because they’ve proven to attract traffic and entertain your audience. That doesn’t mean you bury the new stuff. I’m simply advocating for a healthy blend of new up-and-coming content and older tried-and-true material. You can rotate and shift priorities, both on your site and in your content marketing, so your blog continues to say fresh, seasonally appropriate and on-trend.

If you have a WordPress blog, here’s how to hide dates from your posts: 1. From your dashboard, click on Settings, then Permalinks. 2. Select the “Post name” setting (e.g. www.blogname.com/sample-post 3. Save changes. 4. Heads up: Once you change this setting, all of your old posts will switch to the new permalink format—which means any links to those posts will be broken. An easy fix: Add the Redirection plugin to your site and activate it. Then all the old links will automatically get redirected to your new permalinks, easy peasy. 5. If you’re using SquareSpace: 6. Copy the following snippet: .collection-type-blog article .date {display: none ! important;} 7. Go to Design, then Custom CSS. 8. Paste the snippet into your Custom CSS. 9. Save Changes. 10. If you’re on Blogger: 11. Log into your Blogger dashboard and click on Layout. 12. Select Edit from the “Blog Posts” widget. 13. Deselect the date box under the “Post Page Options” section. 14. Save Changes.

“I’m advocating a healthy blend of new up-and-coming content and older tried-and-true material.”

BLOGGING


Instagram

Kim Beasley KimBeasley.com @kimbeasley

How to Increase

BRAND VISIBILITY

Connecting with target customers on Instagram

o

ne way to reach target customers is to increase visibility using Hashtags on Instagram. Along with Facebook and Twitter, Instagram is one of the social network platforms that entrepreneurs are using daily to reach their market. Did you know that on an average day, 300 million photos are shared on Instagram?

WHAT IS INSTAGRAM AND WHY DO CONSUMERS LIKE IT? Instagram is a quick way for users to post photos or videos and to see what their friends are up to. For brands, it’s a great tool to use to improve the awareness of products, promotions and to develop a more personal relationship with their followers. Consumers love using Instagram because the app is centered around telling a story; a story about who an individual is and how they live their life. It is an instant form of self-expression. Because Instagram is visual, information is shared fast, with not much reading, if any.

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has become a place where consumers look to find new brands. It has almost become the equivalent of a search engine in social media form. Below are some ways Instagram will help you increase your business visibility and ultimately steer more traffic towards your website.

HOW TO GET STARTED WITH INSTAGRAM First of all, the app is 100% free to use. Secondly it makes Instagram a great tool for businesses that are just starting to market to their target customers. If you have a budget you can put towards Instagram marketing; the app lets businesses create ads that can be targeted to specific audiences. In conjunction with using the Instagram app, there are third party services that you can use to monitor your efforts on Instagram. You can monitor how your efforts of using hashtags on Instagram is increasing your brand. Example of these third-party services are:

USING HASHTAGS ON INSTAGRAM AND INCREASING BRAND AWARENESS

OnlyPult: A social media marketing tool for working with Instagram for scheduling posts, analytics, and fast content development

In an online world filled with hashtag and square cropped photos, Instagram

Angora Pulse: Simple & affordable social media management. Manage all


social media messages in one place. Schedule and publish content. Get stunning reports. Union Metrics: Quick analysis, accurate reporting and meaningful answers for major social media channels that matter. Union Metrics provides specific information that marketers need to monitor and manage their social media efforts. Iconosquare: Key analytics for your Instagram. Measure and optimize your Instagram performance.

HASHTAGS HELP USERS TO FIND YOU Hashtags are the heart and soul of Instagram and for good reason. They benefit users and businesses alike. Hashtags necessarily create tiny roadmaps that will lead users to what they’re looking for. For example, if a user is looking for a cute pair of new winter boots, all they

“ON AN AVERAGE DAY, 300 MILLION PHOTOS ARE SHARED ON INSTAGRAM.” need to do is search hashtags like #winterboots, and they will see a plethora of posts about winter boots. Using the right hashtags can help target customers find your brand and become loyal “paying” customers. To help you get to connect with your target customers using hashtags on Instagram, create strategic campaigns that fulfill the needs of your customers.

AN OPPORTUNITY FOR CONSISTENT BRANDING

The visual aspect of Instagram makes this an excellent platform for displaying

your branding. Use stunning photography and creative graphics. Not only does this keep your followers interested, but it also lets them create a connection with your brand. Posting some behind-the-scenes content is also a fun way to connect with your followers. If your customers are on Instagram, then utilizing Instagram’s hashtags is a great way to connect with them. Remember to always be where your target customers are! Set up your account today and see how you can use this social network and its tools to boost the visibility of your business.

INSTAGRAM


This fresh take on a favorite comfort food will delight pizza fans. It has delighted so many fans, in fact, that it won an award—it was the 8th Annual Cavit Gourmet Winning Pizza! If you’re looking for something with more of a fruity flare, this Watermelon and Jicama Salad with Dill Yogurt Dressing is just the thing. Enjoy! Roasted Eggplant and Mozzarella Pizza INGREDIENTS:

INGREDIENTS:

1 lb. of fresh pizza dough (ball) 5 tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1 tbsp. of dry sherry ½ tbsp. of honey 1 medium size eggplant sliced ½ yellow onion sliced 1 ball of fresh Mozzarella 3 tbsp. of Pecorino cheese 2 tbsp. of minced garlic 2 tbsp. of sundried tomato paste 2 tbsp. of black olives 2 tbsp. of red pepper flakes

DIRECTIONS: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Preheat oven to 375 degree. Salt and pepper eggplant sides and brush with 2 tbsp. olive oil. Put eggplant slices on cookie sheet, bake for 20 mins, set aside. Saute 1 tbsp. olive oil, sherry, honey and onions for 10 mins. In a bowl mix 3 tbsp. of olive oil, garlic and Pecorino cheese. Roll-out pizza dough into a round 1 inch thick put on pizza pan. Top with olive oil and garlic mixture. Alternate and arrange eggplant and mozzarella slices around the edge of pizza dough. 9. Add onions, olives, 4 small pieces of mozzarella to dough center. 10. Squeeze 1 tsp. of sundried tomato paste on each mozzarella. 11. Sprinkle pizza with red pepper flakes. 12. Bake pizza at 380 degrees for 10-15 mins or until crust browns.

Michelle Mazzarra

luvafoodie.com 46

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Watermelon and Jicama Salad with Dill Yogurt Dressing 2 cups of baby organic kale 1/3 cup of plain nonfat Greek yogurt 1 tsp. Luvafoodie Garlic Lovers Spice blends 1 tsp. vinegar 3 tbsp. buttermilk 3 tbsp. of chopped dill ½ cup of chopped watermelon ½ cup of English cucumbers chopped ½ cup of chopped jicama ¼ cup of goat cheese crumbles 1 tbsp. chopped green onion 2 tbsp. olive oil 1 juice of lime

DIRECTIONS: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

In a small bowl combine yogurt, dill, Luvafoodie Garlic Lovers spice blend, vinegar, buttermilk. Set aside. In a medium size bowl combine: watermelon, jicama, cucumbers, green onion, olive oil, and lime juice. On two plates divide kale. Top watermelon jicama mixture on top of kale. Drizzle with yogurt dressing. Top with goat cheese crumbles. Side salad for 2

LuvaFood is a 100% woman-owned company by Michelle Mazzarra. The social website connects all foodies together who share a passion for food and beverage. Michelle started www.Luvafoodie.com in August 2014, as the first and only online dating website for singles who are foodies and is the only specific foodie website that is focused on connecting foodies together. The website features restaurant reviews, recipes, blog and shop tab. All Luvafoodie products can be purchased on the shop tab at www.luvafoodie.com

RECIPES


©Disney

iBlog magazine Sept 16  

In this issue of iBlog magazine we interview Agency Insiders to learn what they feel are the "Hot" and "Not So Hot" trends in social media a...

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