Six Ways To Boost Engagement With Instagram Stories In 2019

With over 400 million active users on a daily basis, Instagram Stories is one of the best ways to boost engagement on Instagram.  Lets face it, since this feature has launched, I definitely find myself looking at who has a little circle at the top before I go scrolling through my feed.  That spells something huge for brands.  So let’s dive right in and talk about what things you can be doing now to create even more engagement with your stories.

Here are six ways to boost engagement with Instagram stories in 2019.

1. Polls, Swipe Meter And Questions

Instagram is always coming out with new ways to help make stories more engaging.  They have launched the ability to ask questions with their “ask me anything” feature, you can now conduct polls to get your audience’s opinion on a number of things and their swipe meter which lets you survey your audience and ask them their thoughts on something.  These features really help boost interaction with your followers while giving you ideas for future content.

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2. Swipe Up Feature

Have 10k followers or more?  You are in luck because you have access to the “swipe up” feature where you can direct your audience to see more of your content.  If you have not reached the  10k follower mark, get tips for how to boost your Instagram following.

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3. Share your post in a story

Instagram’s “Add to story” feature allows you to share an Instagram post within your story.  As a follower views your story, they are able to tap on the post preview which will take them to your actual post where they can interact with it further by liking, sharing and commenting.

By sharing a post in your Instagram story, you are not only putting a spotlight on your own post but you can also share the posts of other people.  This is great for sharing (UGC) user-generated content from your followers.  Just be sure to add @ mention for their profile so they get a notification.

4.  Repeat your CTA with overlay text

If you add a CTA to your story, it is automatically added to the bottom of the screen where people may miss it.  Use text overlay and add it in nice big lettering across the image so people will definitely see it.

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Give thought to not only the words you use but also the color of the text and the size of the letters.  This can greatly affect whether someone takes action.

5. Use location, hashtags, GIFs and mentions

Add more details to your video stories by tagging who you are with by using @mention, where you are and adding hashtags/GIFs.  When you add your location to your story, you are not only letting people know where you are but you are extending your reach to the people who search for that location.  Hashtags perform a similar task for you.  When people search for the hashtag you added, your story will come up for them extending your reach once again.  All this adds up to more engagement and more followers.

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6. Go Live

Going Live on stories is great for increasing engagement with your followers as you can chat with fans personally and in real time .  We all know the algorithm issues with Instagram and Facebook and how organic reach has greatly diminished.  Well this is an easy way to help navigate those waters and get seen.

When you go live with stories, it is placed along with the regular stories at the top of the feed screen.  Your live video also gets the benefit of being placed at the front of the storyline and with autoplay, you will most likely be getting views.  These live stories are also highlighted which provides a sense of urgency to tune in and watch.  Furthermore, once you are live, your followers will get a notification which lends itself to them clicking on your story and tuning in.

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Final thoughts

Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms for businesses to be on.  Their introduction of stories has skyrocketed its popularity and the momentum keeps going up.  As Instagram adds new features to its stories, so comes the opportunity for businesses to take advantage of them.  The above tips will help you maximize your “stories” strategy by not only increasing engagement levels but extending reach and boosting brand loyalty.

 

 

 

Your contact marketing strategy strategy is key to your online success.  After some time, you may feel yours needs some refreshing.  In an effort to boost your impact, there are definitely ways to change your strategy up.

Below are 11 ways to freshen up your content marketing strategy.

If you are not using video content, you are way behind the eight ball.  Video is the biggest trend and will continue to be as we move into 2019.  Video gives brands the chance to get their message across in a simple and quick way while maximizing exposure.  Here are some ideas for your next video:

  • Take a look at any of your blog posts or other content that has seen some nice engagement and create a video around it.
  • Give an overview of your company.
  • Announce special events and promotions.
  • Product demos.
  • How-to videos.
  • Customer testimonials.

2. Post content that builds trust

Trust and credibility are key for your brand in today’s economy.  The way people see your brand will have a direct effect on the success of your business.  So when it comes to your content marketing, one of your main goals is to build up customer relations.  If people trust your brand, you have a much higher chance of them purchasing from you.

3. Update the pages on your website

If you have not reviewed your website in a while, take the time to do so.  As you go through it, you may find text that is outdated or other elements that no longer serve your site.  You want to make sure your most important pages have content that appeals directly to your audience.  You also want to make sure that you have social share buttons.  Make it easy for visitors to share your stuff on their social media accounts.

4. Removing pages

While you are changing out text, also keep an eye out for any duplicate content and anything else that can affect your website’s SEO. This could be a guest post that has been published to another site or any identical pages.

5. Consider Email Marketing

Email marketing is a great way to keep your customers informed about company news, special promotions, new products and more.  This is also a good time to consider throwing in a request for a testimonial.  Social proof is everything today and is great for boosting business.

6. Reevaluate Your Keywords

The keywords you use are meant to boost your page’s search engine rankings. If you are not using keywords correctly, your content marketing strategy will suffer.   Take a look that the most important pages on your website and make sure that they are using relevant keywords.  There are tools like  Ahrefs, and Google keyword planner which allow you to search topics and see how often people are searching for them as well as any other relevan keywords people are also searching for. By doing this, you will be able to come up with more targeted content.

7. Focus on Your Brand Identity

In today’s economy, your business needs to have an identity tied to it.  It is how your customers build a deeper connection with your business.  Here are some elements to think about when cultivating a brand identity:

  • Your mission and values.
  • Your brand personality.
  • Your unique positioning.
  • Your brand voice.

8. Ask for feedback

Feedback from your audience is essential in keeping your audience engaged.  By asking for their opinion, you will continually have an idea of what your customers want to see along with how their needs change as time goes on. Here are some ways to elicit feedback from your audience:

  1. Email
  2. Website comments
  3. Contact/feedback form
  4. Social media poll
  5. Website chat

9. Employee Advocacy Programs

Nowadays, consumers are looking for brands to be more authentic and transparent.  They not only want to connect with the brand on social media but they also are wanting a more personal connection.  For this reason, brands are turning their focus to employee advocacy.  With this strategy, you are encouraging employees to advocate on behalf of your brand by sharing both branded and relevant third-party content on social media.  This not only helps the company boost its network but also helps employees build up their own personal brands.  Furthermore, By having someone already on the payroll promoting your brand, you are able to save on marketing while seeing a greater return.

10. Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing has grown more and more in popularity.  This is largely due in part to the social proof it provides.  People just simply trust a company more if it has been endorsed by someone else, regardless of whether they know them.

Keep in mind that when choosing an influencer, you want to not only look at the number of followers but the level of engagement they see from their followers.  BuzzSumo is a very helpful tool that can help you analyze and determine who the key people are in your niche.

11. Create Infographics

People are visual and they are able to better retain information contained in an image or video.  This is where infographics come in.  Infographics are the perfect tool for gathering data into an easy-to-follow format that is not only visually appealing but also persuasive.

Final thoughts

A successful content marketing strategy requires you to analyze it and refresh it as the needs of your audience and website change.   The above tips will help freshen up your current content strategy and help boost overall engagement and brand awareness.

 

Effective Tips To Help You Maximize Your Social Media Video Content

As we are approaching the end of 2018, the number one trend that continues to grow in popularity is video.  People are spending the majority of their time online watching videos across all social media platforms including YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. Over 500 million people are watching videos on a daily basis.  So if you have not been using video as a part of your social media marketing strategy, you need to be.

Below are tips for optimizing your videos on the major social media platforms.

Facebook

Facebook has come out with some great video options including Facebook stories and Facebook Live.  You also have the option of native videos too.  So which is best for your brand?

Here are some things to keep in mind when it comes to marketing on Facebook that might give you an idea on which might fit best for your business:

  • Upload your own videos to Facebook

These are referred to as native videos and these tend to garner more overall engagement  than videos uploaded from third party sources like YouTube or Vimeo.

  •  Add captions to your videos

People are checking Facebook at all hours.  They are checking it not only in their downtime but at work as well.  For this reason, many people view videos on silent and one big reason you need to be including captions in your videos.

  • Try your hand at live video

People love watching live streams over just looking at a post so next time you are having a company event or have a new product to show off, help bring attention to your page by doing it live.

  • Narrow down your audience

This is a great feature that Facebook offers.  Choose your most relevant users and restrict access to certain audience groups that would not be interested in your message.  This will help provide you with better targeting and hence, better results.

Instagram

Instagram is all visual so your job is to give them something beautiful that will grab their attention.  You are only given 60 seconds to record a video so you really need to be on your game for this and prepare exactly what points you want to get across.

Here are some tips to help you take the most advantage of your Instagram feed.

  •  Square videos perform much better than landscape 

Using square videos instead of landscape performs better on all the social platforms including Twitter and Facebook.  Mostly everyone is accessing these sites from their mobile devices; therefore, square videos are the more visually appealing format.

  •  Use eye-catching graphics or animations

60 seconds is all you have to effectively get your message across.  Make yours stand out by including animated or graphic videos that help showcase your product in an eye catching way.

  •  Go behind the scenes

Instagram Stories have become extremely popular with millions of people using it daily.  They offer a great way to show off the day to day of your business which helps show the more human side.  You can also try the live feature so you can interact with your audience in real-time.  Bonus is that they will receive a notification each time you are going live.  This all helps foster a deeper connection with your brand.

  • Use hashtags selectively

Hashtags can be very helpful in boosting exposure but you don’t want to go too crazy.  Come up with a maximum of five of the most relevant hashtags for each video you put up.

  • Ask Users to Share Their Photos With you

Get the most bang for your buck by asking followers to share photos using the hashtags you have created.  This is great for boosting engagement levels.  For example, if you posted a video about creative ways to style a scarf for the fall, you could ask people to share their ideas using a hashtag that has your brand name in it.

Twitter

Twitter is another platform where video performs very well.  It has a much higher retweet rate than photos do.  Here are some tips for using video on Twitter:

  • Use native video 

As with Facebook, Twitter’s algorithm favors native video over those uploaded from a third party source.  The autoplay feature makes people more apt to watch and engage with the videos so upload yours directly to Twitter.

  • Keep your videos short

Twitter is used for short snippets of information.  For this reason, you don’t want to post a video that is longer than 45 seconds.  You want to be able to capture people’s attention in the first three seconds.

  •  Show off your branding from the get go

According to Adweek, the first five seconds are crucial for including clear branding and including your logo can help boost purchase intent.  So don’t forget to include yours.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn has recently added video to its features for business professionals as well as business pages.  This is not Facebook or Instagram, so make sure you keep a professional tone with everything you share on this platform.

  • Provide value

Business professionals use LinkedIn to help them gain new connections and stay abreast of what is happening in their industry.  This is your opportunity to share your expertise and knowledge surrounding a topic.  This can also be a good place to provide customer service.

  •  Keep videos under two minutes long

LinkedIn allows a longer video length but more isn’t necessarily better.  Most people want to watch a video that is under a minute.  So you want to keep it short and sweet here too.

  • Add captions

Just like the other platforms, many people are watching videos silently.  Don’t make the mistake of not including captions to your videos.

Final thoughts

The usage of video on your social media channels is essential if you want to succeed.  It provides a great opportunity to boost engagement levels and overall exposure for your brand.  With that being said, each platform is different and you need to adjust your video marketing accordingly.  The above tips will help you maximize your efforts to effectively spread your message on each channel.

Looking To Extend The Shelf Life Of Your Blog Posts? Here Are 7 Ways To Re-Purpose Your Blog Content

 

Writing posts for your business blog is a time consuming task for most.  Hours spent writing and promoting your posts month after month will generate some spikes in traffic, but that then slows down until your next post goes up.  But what if you can keep that buzz going?  You can, by re-purposing your content.   When you turn your blog postings into different formats, you are increasing your reach with each “new piece” of content you come up with.   Let’s get started with how you can begin re-purposing your content.

Here are seven ways you can re-purpose your blog content for increased reach.

1. Turn your blog post into a podcast  

Turning your blog post into a podcast is one of the simplest ways to gain more reach for your content.   Anchor.fm is a free tool that makes it super easy to convert your blog post into a podcast.  Now people can listen to your content on the go.

Now that you have a podcast recorded, you can submit it to podcast directories like Google Play, Spotify, SoundCloud and iTunes.   With Anchor, you can also turn your audio into video and share it on social media, now you have just expanded your reach even more.

 2.  Turn your content into slides

Converting your content into a slideshow is an easy way to extend the life of your content.  Use tools like PowerPoint or Google Drive to create a slide deck.  Here are some forms of content that would be easy to turn into a slide deck:

  • Interesting statistics
  • Meaningful quotes
  • Actionable advice

Once you have a slide deck put together, you should share it on SlideShare.net.  They have over 50 million visitors per month and are the top presentation site online.  The cool part about this site is that you can also upload your post as an infographic, a pdf as well as embedded YouTube Videos.  If you are not savvy enough to create all this, you can check out Fiverr to hire a freelancer to create them for you.

3.  Put your content into an infographic

Infographics are very popular due to their visual nature. They do great in terms of shares on Pinterest providing you lots of value.  You can also distribute your infographic on different directories which results in more reach and potential backlinks.

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To create your infographic, check out tools like  Canva or Piktochart.  If you are not up for creating one yourself, Fiverr is always available.

4. Create a Pinterest instructographic

People are visual.  It is just a fact.  For this reason, turning your content into different visual formats is smart to do.  Instructographics like the infographic, is more of a how-to with graphics. Pinterest is the best place for this type of content to thrive since it is both visual and actionable.

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5. Do a Facebook Live video

Video is one of the top ways to share content online..hands down.  So choose your best blog posts and do a live video where you discuss it.  Now you are not reading every word of your post, you want to talk about what inspired you to write it.  Discuss some of the key points and you have a new form of content to promote and this can literally be done in under 15 minutes.   Bonus with this live video is that you get the added benefit of engaging with your readers at the same time.  In addition, you will also drive traffic back to your blog.

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6.  Update old posts and republish them

Go through all your posts and and pull out the ones that have done really well but perhaps some details need updating.  The posts you choose can be posted as a new article once you make the necessary changes.  Adding some imagery and rewriting headlines are good places to start.  Just be sure to note somewhere on the post that it is modified from the original and include a link to the original post.

7. Repost on Quora

Aside from promoting your content on the 4 major social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Linkedin) Quora is another site that is great for reposting your blog posts.  You can do this by plugging in your blog post as a reply to a question or you can post it to their user blog.  Quora can also serve as inspiration for content as you answer questions and see what others are discussing in your niche.

Final thoughts

Repurposing content is a great way to extend the shelf life of your posts.  It benefits SEO, reach, traffic and more.  One post can lead to a bunch of different pieces of content.  You may even want to give thought to spin off content as you come up with blog post ideas.   You just want to make sure you are focusing on adding value to the original content and you should see positive results from your efforts.

 

 

 

 

Create More Shareable Content With These Seven Tips

Producing shareable content is a great way to not only expand your reach but further establish your brand.  The key is to post content that resonates with your audience enough for them to want to share it.  How do you do this?  We are here to help.

Below are 7 tips to help you create shareable content.

1. Research your competitors

One of the easiest ways to come up with shareable content is to look at what is working for your competitors.  See what type of content is generating the most engagement and you have a good idea of what your audience will respond to.

Here are some tips for how to research your competitors on social media:

  1. Come up with a list of your top competitors and the platforms you both have a presence on.  Being on the same platforms means you are competing so you want to try and make the audience see you as the more trusted option to follow.
  2. Go back 6 months and see what content they are publishing.  Are they publishing blogs, vlogs, live content, video?  Next you want to see which is generating the most engagement.  Are their Facebook videos or Instagram stories boosting engagement with their audience?  Have this serve as inspiration for creating your own content.

2. Keep Your Content Simple

People are moving quickly through the day and they need to be able to easily digest the content you share.  This can be achieved by formulating an introduction that tells the reader what problem you are addressing and the best way to handle it.  You then want to list a few bullet points that summarize what they are going to learn from your post.   This allows the reader to know right away whether this post is something they will benefit from reading.

Another way to make your content more easily digestible is to break it up.  Here are some examples:

  • Keep your paragraphs to only a few sentences.
  • Use headers throughout.
  • Turn your content into an infographic.

3. Following trending topics

There are tons of ideas to take advantage of if you follow what is trending in the news.   Google Trends is a great tool for finding out what is trending online for any given day.  Sift through it and see what might fit as content for you.  Also, you should set up keywords with  Google Alerts.  They will send you emails with any articles that are relevant to them.  Facebook is another great place to find trending news.  You see it on the right of your feed.  Check it often and see what you can share that would be a good tie in for your audience.

4. Do keyword research

They key to sharing successful content is knowing what type of content your audience wants to read.  This is found out through keyword research.  For this you need to use tools like Google keyword planner and Ahrefs (there are a ton of others). When you search your topics you will be able to see how often people are searching for them and what other keywords people are also searching for. All this will help you come up with more targeted content.

5. Turn content into shareable images and video

When it comes to video, it is one of the most popular activities online.  People love watching videos.  Furthermore, people are visual.  So content with an image attached to it are what works for people.  Here are some tips:

  • Look at the headline of your content and put it on a related image.
  • Go through your content and look for snippets of information that can be turned into a video or an image.
  • If you have any content that is robust with details, consider turning those details into a handy infographic.

6. Post inspirational content

Content that makes people feel great is another thing to strive for when it comes to what you are sharing.   Take some time to go through your content and see if you have some inspirational quotes you can pull out.  Create images with your quotes and share away.  Canva can help out with this if you do not have a graphic designer on the books.

 7. Have sharing buttons in prominent places

You need to make it easy for people to easily share your content.  This is where share buttons come into play.  It allows your audience to easily click and share your content with their followers.  A popular place to place share buttons is along the left side as seen here.  You can also make them follow the reader as they scroll.

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Final  thoughts

Coming up with content that resonates with your audience enough for them to share it is the goal of content marketing.  With that being said, it is not easy to consistently come up with great content.  The above tips will help you get started and get you on the track of establishing your brand as a trusted voice.

10 Small Business Tips To Help Grow Your Instagram Following

Instagram is a powerhouse in the marketing world. Large companies like Nike, Ebay, Starbucks and more are dominating the platform. When you are a big, well known company with an established following, its simple to to achieve results.  But if you are a small business, achieving this takes time and hard work.

The value of Instagram is not just reserved for the big guys.  They make a point of giving small businesses a chance to compete with the enterprise size companies. For this reason, if you are not using Instagram as a part of your marketing arsenal, you are definitely missing out on a ton of  opportunities.

Below are 10 small business tips and strategies on how to increase your visibility and engagement on Instagram.

1. Make sure your account is set up correctly from the get go

The first step in setting up your Instagram account correctly, is to link all your social media accounts together.  Next, take the opportunity to promote your new Instagram account to your other followers.  Your other social media accounts will receive any new posts you make to Instagram.

When setting up your account, be sure to add a bio to your profile link as well as your website url.  Your bio should be about your company without being dull.  You should also add additional contact info that includes a clickable URL.  Instagram only allows one of these.  Any additional ones you want to include can just be added to your bio as unclickable.  Be sure to shorten them by using something like Bitly.   This will allow you to more easily track the traffic coming from Instagram.

2. Pay attention and respond to comments

As you begin posting to Instagram, make sure you are monitoring your comments.  This is where small businesses tend to make a mistake. You should respond whenever a question has been asked or any other statement or request has been made.  Timing is key, so be sure you respond within 24 hours, wait past that and you risk losing future interaction as well as followers.

3. Look into collaborating with an influencer

Linking up with an influencer is a great way to quickly boost your following on Instagram, especially if you are just starting out.  With this type of marketing you will have access to people that have a well-established following and in turn you will gain exposure to their followers.

In previous times, this type of marketing was reserved for the big hitters with large budgets.  Social media has flipped the tables and now anyone can be an influencer with thousands of followers.

Begin by identifying who these people are in your market and scope out their Instagram account.  You should be looking for level of engagement (not just the number of followers) amongst their followers (likes and comments).  Someone can have a lot of followers, but if you are not seeing much engagement, it is not the right fit.  When you find the right fit, storm up some ideas before contacting them about collaborating together.  Two typical options are to do a contest or sponsored post.  The influencer may also come to the table with some ideas. Remember they know their audience best and what they would respond to.

4. Be sure you are correctly using hashtags

Hashtags are where it’s at when it comes to exposing your content to a larger audience and helping your business get found.  The key is to make sure you are using the proper hashtags. Some businesses make the mistake of making up random hashtags that people are not searching for.

The answer is to find those hashtags that are trending or popular and build your post around that.  If you do this, your images have a much larger chance of being noticed.  The only thing to watch out for is relevancy.  The trendy hashtags may not be relevant to what you are posting.  In order to avoid this, you can use website like Websta to view what is currently popular but not necessarily trending. You will also be able to see more broad and generic hashtags that may be easier to use for your Instagram posts that don’t have a theme.

The number of hashtags you use is also an important factor.  With Instagram, using the max allowable amount of 30 hashtags seems to be the sweet spot.

5. Create more videos

Video marketing is on the rise at a rapid pace and is very important for small businesses.  If you are not already incorporating video into your Instagram strategy, now is the time.

Instagram Stories and live videos is the direction Instagram is moving in. The great thing about using Instagram video is that it’s very user friendly and requires little production since each video has a one minute time limit.  So grab your phone and get creative.

6. Look into using Instagram ads

Spending dollars on advertising can be tough for small businesses, especially when it comes to social media.  Instagram Ads is great for small businesses since it’s very affordable.  If you are already advertising with Facebook, the setup is easy since they are built into the same platform. With that being said, you will want to create images that are just for Instagram Ads instead of using the same ones you do for Facebook.  This is because of the difference in how each platform displays images.

7. Share other people’s content

Growing your audience on social media should be a top priority for any small business.  In an effort to boost your reach and level of engagement, you need to build connections with other people.  If you come across something share worthy, re-posting it is a great way to get some momentum going.

Since Instagram does not have a built in feature where you can just share something posted by someone, you need to use a third party app.

8. Host An Instagram Contest

People love free stuff and hosting an Instagram contest is a great way to boost engagement with current followers and potential ones.  In order to get the best results possible, you want to follow some guidelines:

  • Come up with a theme.  A photo caption contest, selfie contest etc
  • Create a custom hashtag.
  • Have people tag a friend to enter.  Your contest will get in front of that many more eyes.
  • Begin promoting the contest at least a week before to build anticipation.
  • Think about collaborating with other companies or influencers to get even more reach.

9. Look to your competitor’s followers

Two important things that identify an engaged Instagram follower are that they have an interest in your niche and that they like the content you are posting.

If someone is following a competitor, there is a good chance you can get them to follow you.  It is all about the content from this point forward.   Put together a list of your top competitors.  Go through each and make sure they have an active account with followers who are engaging with them. Throw them into a spreadsheet for easier tracking.  Next, go one by one through them and follow 50+ of their followers.  You will probably get some to follow you but the work doesn’t stop there, you need them to engage with you.  Here are some ways to do that:

  1. Follow them back
  2. Like their images
  3. Leave a comment on their images

10. Offer Exclusive or Limited-Time Promos

Once again, people love discounts and other offers. If your business is about to come out with a new line of products or you have one that sells really well, doing a limited time promotion can be a great way to boost sales.

Final thoughts

Building a loyal and dedicated following on Instagram will not occur overnight. With that being said, Instagram users love to engage and be active.  Once your account gains some traction, you will certainly start to see it grow organically.

5 Steps To Hosting An Instagram Takeover

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Instagram takeovers are all the rage these days.  We have all witnessed our favorite big brands inviting popular Instagrammers to take over their feeds for a day.  What started out as a fun way for brands to collaborate with them,  has now evolved into a key part of any Instagram marketing strategy.  They are a terrific way to expand your audience and get fresh eyes on your brand.

Below are five steps to having a successful Instagram takeover.

Define what your takeover goals are

Defining what the goals are for your takeover is the most important step in cultivating a successful Instagram takeover.  Understanding your end result will help you compose a solid plan for maximizing your campaign.   To get the ball rolling, here are some great goals you can strive to achieve with your takeover and the subsequent metrics to gauge their success:

  • Launch/promote a product – This can be measured by traffic to your website, the number of conversions and the number of attendees.
  • Increase your brand awareness – This can be measured by growth in number of followers, number of views, number of mentions on other platforms etc.
  • Increase engagement with followers – This can be measured by the number of likes, comments, views or direct messages.

Choose the right influencer/partner for your takeover

Now that you have defined your goals, this should help you in deciding who should be your takeover partner or influencer.  With that being said, not all takeovers need an influencer, but you do want to partner up with someone who has a loyal following.  This will help expand your audience and get fresh eyes on your brand. If you decide that the takeover will be more of a behind the scenes sneak peek of an event, an employee may be the right choice.  If you do decide that an influencer fits the bill, keep these points in mind:

  • Choose someone whose audience closely mirrors your target consumer.  If they are not properly aligned, your marketing strategy will fall flat.
  • Choose someone with an audience who engages.  Make sure their posts are garnering attention with comments and likes.  
  • Make sure the content they are posting is in line with your brand’s image/message.
  • Pick someone who actually knows what they are doing.  If they are getting traction on only a few types of images, pass.  You also want to make sure they are abiding by the correct format (i.e. tagging handles properly etc).

Figure out the logistics of your takeover

Now that you have chosen who will be doing your takeover, the next step is ironing out all the details.  This is key in order for things to run smoothly.   Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • You want to allow enough time to put out the news that you plan on having a takeover.  2 weeks are the recommendation to get that buzz going.
  • How much time you will need to put together what the campaign content will be.
  • The number of times the host will be posting.
  • A list of the metrics that you will be keeping track of.

As you gather all these details, be sure to include your host.  They will be able to provide insight into what type of content their followers respond to best, which will help in getting you the results you are hoping for.

Come up with a branded hashtag for your takeover

Coming up with a great branded hashtag for your takeover is key for a few reasons:

  • It will help you monitor user posts and/or comments.
  • You will be able to track the performance of the campaign via the amount of posts using the hashtag as well as user engagement etc.
  • A hashtag will help you and the users look back at posts which included the hashtag.  For those that missed the takeover, this allows them to go back and see what they missed.

Promote your takeover

Your Instagram takeover is planned and your content is good to go.  Now it is time to think about promoting your takeover. You want to give at least 2 weeks notice to your audience about the takeover.  This is not something you need to post about on a daily basis but pick a couple of times where you can mention it to help boost buzz around it.  Make sure you use an Instagram scheduler to schedule your content ahead of time.

This will really free you up and allow more time to focus on making your takeover a success.  You also want to make sure that your host is promoting this takeover on their end.

Now that your Instagram takeover is done, your job is not quite finished. Take it a step further by collecting your takeover posts and write a blog post that you can direct followers back to.

I hope these tips get your creative juices flowing and you go on to create your own successful Instagram takeover.  Cheers!

How to Verify your Instagram Account

Hello Autogrammers!

We are back (sooner) with another post as promised. One of the biggest challenges users have when first trialing Autogrammer is verifying their Instagram accounts. So we are writing this post to hopefully help our users get over this hurdle to realize the power of Autogrammer.

Why is verification required?
Instagram has a strong spam filter and one aspect of this is ensuring there is no unauthorized access to your account. How does Instagram do this? They track where your account is being logged in from – much like other services like Gmail does. If they see that your account is being accessed from an unrecognized location they will require you to verify your account

Since our posting devices may not necessarily be located in the same city as you, you will most likely be prompted to verify your account. When you attempt to add your Instagram account to Autogrammer, Instagram may require you to verify your account.

How to verify your account?
When you attempt to add your Instagram account to Autogrammer you may receive an error prompting you to verify your Instagram account from the Instagram app.

At this time please login to your Instagram account on your phone and it will show you one of the following screens (you will need to have added an email address or phone number to your Instagram profile to see it)

sms-or-phone    verify

 

 

 

 

 

 

At this point you can click either, “It Was Me”, “Verify by SMS” (if you have a phone number associated with your Instagram profile) or “Verify by Email”. If you select one of the latter two options you will then be texted or emailed a verification number. You can enter this number on the Instagram app and verify your account this way. If you do not see the verification number in your email, please be sure to check your spam folder.

You can now login to Autogrammer and visit the “Manage Accounts” page and click the “Refresh icon” next to your Instagram account from the list of accounts. The status of your Instagram account should change from Unverified to Verified

Verified

Autogrammer – Version 3 Released!

Hello Autogrammers!

Its been an awful long time since our last post (over a year ago). The last blog post was an announcement for the release of Autogrammer v2! This blog post is about a release announcement for Autogrammer v3.

We realize we should be blogging more often and we will be focusing our time and energy on it, not only blogging about our product but also material helping our users with their own social media marketing efforts.

Dashboard

Back to the release announcement after the slight digression! We just released Autogrammer v3 last week and are very proud of this much anticipated version. We tried to address the major drawbacks of our (then) existing version. The major features include the ability to schedule Facebook posts and schedule Twitter posts. I mean why shouldn’t you be able to manage your social media marketing from one platform? At the time of this writing we are the ONLY tool to allow you to schedule to all 3 platforms: Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Calendar

We also completely redesigned the user interface from the ground up. While the previous version of Autogrammer was a great start to tackling the issue of scheduling to Instagram it did lack a user friendly interface. The most important aspect to the redesign is the replacement of the “Activity Log” with a calendar view of your posts that we call “Scheduled Posts”.

Schedule-Overlay

In addition to viewing your posts on a calendar you can also view them from a beautiful dashboard showing all your posts across multiple social profiles or just specific profiles. Other enhancements to the user interface include filtering your posts on the Dashboard by “Pending”, “Posting”, and “Published” posts. Lastly, at all times you can see your Likes and Followers counts for each respective social profile.

Until next time (we promise it won’t as long!) take care and happy scheduling Autogrammers!

Autogrammer – Version 2 Released!

Greetings Autogrammers!

We have some great news for you in time for Christmas, we just released the second version of Autogrammer! Included are some awesome changes that will make it even easier to manage your Instagram accounts

bulk-upload

1) You can now Bulk Upload images to Autogrammer
2) Edit previously scheduled posts
2) Changes to the dashboard
* The date/time for scheduled posts are displayed in a more readable format
* Increased the number of Activity Log items from 3 to 6
3) Failed posts will be reattempted automatically within 15 minutes of failing
4) GIF images are now supported