Sharpen Your Savvy: How to stay on top when working for a marketing or public relations company

If it’s true that marketing agencies’ last client on the totem pole is always the agency itself, it certainly follows that a marketer’s last priority is typically also themselves. However, it is imperative for continued personal and professional growth that marketing and PR professionals invest in themselves both inside and outside of the office to advance in the future and stay sharp to handle the challenges of right now.

How exactly do you do this when the client-related things on your checklist only seem to grow by the hour? Here are a few tips on how to make investing in yourself a habit and not another overwhelming item on your agenda.

Get Out

Some of the best business opportunities, learning experiences, and in-depth conversations I’ve had have occurred during chance meetings with total strangers at bars, business events, or sitting on airplanes. After an exhausting day of work, most of us are typically ready to zone out at home with the Netflix and a glass of wine. But what if you pushed yourself for one more hour and dropped by the coding seminar you’ve been thinking about attending, or that charity event your coworker invited you to? You never know who you might meet. It could be your next client, partner, or employee. If you never expand your social circle, you’re limiting the number of opportunities, perspectives and ideas you’ll come in contact with as well.

Read Up

As a marketer, especially if you work in PR, content marketing, or social media, a large portion of your day is devoted to reading: client emails, journalists’ stories, bylined articles, Tweets, and that’s just before lunch! Reading for pleasure is a concept most marketers will laugh out loud at. However, reading is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to expand your knowledge base. To make a habit out of this, try taking the first ten minutes of your day before you even open your email and reading one relevant article while you sip on your coffee. It will help you start your day feeling in-control and you’ll be brushing up on important skills. Some of my favorite reading material comes from AdEspresso, Social Media Examiner, Adweek, Business 2 Community, and KissMetrics. Bookmark your own favorites, or subscribe to newsletters so that you always have fresh material on hand.

Have a Hobby

For many in the agency world, we could proudly wear t-shirts that say “work is my hobby.” However, according to Inc. Magazine, the most successful people are committed to developing skills and hobbies ex-officio. Right now, I’m rehabilitating an abused dog—something I had no prior knowledge about. It has required reading, networking, and creative problem solving over and over again. All skills that are directly transferable to my work environment. Whether your hobby is cooking, skiing, or building model ships, doing something that you enjoy and that requires time and effort is like exercise for your brain. If you only ever work it out in one way, it can grow sluggish. Stretch your thinking and your skills at home with a new endeavor.

Find Time

One of the biggest obstacles to personal growth, as echoed in the tips above, is finding time. However, there are likely pockets of your day that are going unused—and those minutes when added up at the end of the week can turn into hours of personal development. Commute via train in the morning? Grab yesterday’s paper (they’re free) from Starbucks and read an article or two on the way to work. Commute via car? Listen to NPR or a podcast instead of bad morning talk radio. Like to scroll through your phone before you get out of bed in the morning? Download an app like Duolingo and learn another language instead. Waiting for your Uber? Check the news. Waiting in line at Chipotle? Talk to one new person. These little changes can get you outside of your personal bubble, keeping your knowledge and social skills sharp.

Make Time

Besides working professional development around your normal schedule—sometimes it’s important to stop and work it into your normal schedule. Talk to your boss about what her expectations are in terms of your development, what your own goals are, and what you think is the most valuable use of your time in order to achieve those goals. If there is a webinar or meetup that happens during work hours that you find extremely beneficial, ask if you can take an hour or so to set aside work and focus exclusively on your skill development. Many companies offer compensation for continuing educational opportunities, or networking opportunities. It is an investment that will not only pay off in your career, but could immediately pay off if you meet a new client or are able to solve an existing client’s problems based on the connections and knowledge you gained.

With any of these habits, it’s important to connect them mentally to specific goals, personally and professionally. You can also choose to focus all these habits on one particular goal or area if you’re looking to see immediate progress. For instance, maybe your goal for the year is to learn Spanish, become a wake board instructor, sign one new client, or meet someone who can teach you Photoshop. If your goal is to learn Spanish, spend all the extra time you find on just that; listen to podcasts in Spanish; do your morning reading in Spanish. By setting goals, you’ll never feel guilty about giving time and effort to these things, because you know they are helping you get where you need to go.

Instagram’s Algorithm Receives No Love from Content Creators

Remember that friend you had growing up? You were inseparable. That is, until he became famous. Cue, Instagram. Instagram, do you know who your friends were? Small businesses! Small businesses have to be smart and witty about their content since they typically don’t have the same budgets as big companies. They pushed content creation to the next level by bringing creative ideas, with zero or low cost budgets, to the table.

Instagram recently changed its platform from posting in chronological order to one that is based on an algorithm similar to Facebook. And for a solid reason; the average user misses 70% of the posts and only sees 30% of content shared by the accounts he or she follows. Now, Instagram wants to make the 30% viewed content he most relevant 30%. Of course, advertising on the platform will stay the same, and profiles that have some extra dollars lying around will be able to make it into the 30%. Guess where that leaves small businesses? In the bottom 70%.

Facebook’s algorithm didn’t receive any love from businesses and bloggers when it was first introduced. Those same people still aren’t happy about it, which contributed to the rise of other social media platforms like Instagram. One of my favorite quotes comes from the German politician, Otto von Bismarck who said, “Only a fool learns from his own mistakes. The wise man learns from the mistakes of others.” What does that make Instagram since they are potentially repeating the same mistake as Facebook?

Twitter seems to be the only platform getting it right with its “while you were away…” feature. Instagram can easily duplicate that with their new timeline and chronicle images in a grid for the user to review once he or she reopens the application. He or she can decide what to explore further. If Instagram were to utilize this feature it would make the user’s experience better since the user is being served the content they want to see according to the algorithm. The small businesses, who are trying to break into social media are still capable of gaining the organic reach they depend on for survival, and the big companies can use advertising to be a part of the 12 images. This way, everyone can be a winner and Instagram can have more advertising opportunities for businesses with different budgets.

If you agree, share this article with #KeepInstagramChronological. Instagram is open to experimenting with their new model throughout this month and will be listening closely to the users and businesses.

instagram ads

 

Public Relations Agency’s Common Challenges and How to Avoid Them

Kicking off a Public Relations program with a new client is always an exciting time at an agency! We quickly start wrapping our heads around the ins and outs of the company and shortly after, get to tout their unique qualities to our media friends. Although this is an exciting time, it is also a crucial period to develop a relationship with your client that will pave the way to success. The first month of a working relationship can be the most challenging, so we’ve created a cheat sheet to minimize speed bumps and increase success during the ramp-up stage.

Amount of Review Samples

When working with tangible goods, more often than not, the media will request a sample unit to review to validate the attributes that make a product special. In an era of fly-by-night companies that do not deliver, it is more important than ever to substantiate the claims of a good or service. Journalists have been burned by writing about a product that never comes to market, so in order to best serve them, and especially their audiences, we provide them with the sample unit they need to complete their piece. If a company delays sending review units, they also run the risk of delaying the PR program and affecting the steady stream of press.

Not all consumer goods are created equal. Varying prices and manufacturing costs can affect the amount of samples allocated to a given program. For high-priced consumer goods or goods with limited quantities for the media, it’s important to utilize a Product Loan Agreement, a contractual obligation to send the review sample back to the company once the review is completed in the amount of time defined in the agreement. By circulating the review units, we are able to maximize the review opportunities.

Public Relations Messaging and Materials

A crucial element to the success of a Public Relations program is the translation of the brand’s identity into messaging used throughout press materials. The messaging used will be the first impression a media member has of the company, as well as what they will use to help them write their story. It is important to provide an agency with all the proper messaging, and work with them as it is being developed to ensure the best and most accurate information possible.

Concise and effective messaging and press materials will help set a company apart from competitors, especially when being compared directly to them. In order to ensure that we see the best possible results from a secured media opportunity, we provide the media with any and all press materials including press releases, custom quick-start guides and a spokesperson from the company to comment on any questions that may arise.

Published Press

Once the press materials are ready for public consumption, we can aggressively hit the ground running. As ongoing discussions continue, we often hear this question from the client, “When can we expect to see press coverage?” The answer to this question will largely depend on the publication and journalist. An outlet’s lead times, editorial calendars and a journalist’s editor all contribute to the timing of when a piece will publish. Another major factor to take into consideration is the piece’s timeliness in the news cycle as breaking news often impacts scheduled stories and secured opportunities.

Ensuring that coverage converts in a timely manner is the key to any successful program. Here are a few ways that we ensure press publishes:

  • Open Lines of Communication – By following up with the journalist to check in, your brand will be top-of-mind and we will stay up to date on the progress of the story. In addition, if the journalist is encountering any problems with our product or service, we can stay ahead of the issue by offering a quick solution.
  • Avoiding Industry Announcements – To ensure the success of a pitch or a slew of press during a product announcement, we will advise on industry announcements, tradeshows, and other major events that could affect the timeliness of our story.

A Symbiotic Relationship

A successful Public Relations program cannot exist without engagement from the client. A lack of communication between a Public Relations agency and company can be detrimental to the overall success of a program. With a proper relationship in place, we can pivot on the program as needed and stay in line with the priorities of the company and leverage all angles, including newsworthy opportunities that could get prime real estate in a media outlet that may have been previously overlooked.

Letter to Future Public Relations Practitioners

So you want to work in Public Relations? Great, but do you really know what that entails? As someone who has a few years under his belt, let me tell you.

Public Relations practitioners are tasked with much more than media relations or writing a speech for an executive. Clients hire PR practitioners not only to garner their company valuable media coverage but to also be a trusted advisor to their company.  That means at all days and hours you must be ready to help guide your client through any situation, good or bad.  All it takes is one bad news story, tweet, Instagram post, Facebook post, etc. to set off a chain of events that can ruin a company or person’s reputation.

A major key to success in the industry is that you have to know what your clients’ goals are. Without that, you cannot be successful.

Clients come from all over the world and that is one of the most exciting and challenging parts of the job. In this industry, I’ve interacted with people from every continent in the world (besides Antarctica), and each client has different goals for their company. For example, one client may be focused on broadcast coverage and featuring one company spokesperson whereas another may be a family run business that is more interested in being featured in business publications highlighting them as a family.

Knowing what media outlets can move the needle for your clients, what their sales goals are and what messaging they want conveyed to the public are all examples of goals that both the client and PR practitioner need to align on.

In today’s data driven age, having a free flowing information channel with your client can help to refine your PR program to yield better results. Sharing statistics and analytics with your client helps track sales and other trends. For example, I worked with a client that makes a fitness product. They found out from their sales and social media analytics that the majority of consumers purchasing the product were female. That information is crucial as a practitioner. You can use that to pivot your marketing strategy and target more of a female demographic.

Being a PR practitioner can be challenging and stressful because you have to expect the unexpected. If it was easy, wouldn’t everyone be doing it?

Now I hope I didn’t scare you away. Anything can happen at any time but that is also part of the fun! In first couple of years in the industry, I’ve been able to do some amazing things.

Here are a few of the highlights for me:

  • CES 2016-This January, I worked at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas or as I’d prefer to call it, “The Super Bowl of Tech.” Spending a week out there with a variety of clients was an extremely beneficial experience. The show had almost 200,000 in attendance and was even more massive in person. I was able to learn a lot and have fun (it is Las Vegas after all!)
  • Media Training Athletes-During my time at Florida State University as an intern with a sports-focused agency, I had the privilege of helping media train NCAA athletes from multiple Division 1 schools. Like I said before in today’s digital and social age, this is HUGE for any university.
  • New York Media Tour-I’m getting ready to go to New York to do a media tour on behalf of multiple different clients of the agency. I’ll be meeting with influential journalists from publications including The Wall Street Journal, CNET, Sports Illustrated, SELF and Golf Digest and talking about their editorial calendars and how I can be of help.

Public Relations is an evolving landscape and an integral part of any successful business. To be a successful PR practitioner, it takes a good personality, motivation, passion, patience and skill. If this sounds like something you are up for, go for it with all you’ve got because anything’s possible!

Air-Popped Productivity

We’re potluck fanatics and go crazy over a good productivity tip, so these “5 Wacky Things You Can Eat to Boost Productivity” piece from Inc.com is right up our alley.

Article below and here. Credit: Inc.com

5 Wacky Things You Can Eat to Boost Productivity
Think yogurt, eggs, bananas, spinach, and walnuts are top notch? They sure are, but add these 5 ingredients to your daily menu and you might boost productivity even more!
BY JANINE POPICK
CMO, Dasheroo; founder, VerticalResponse

GreenRoom Agency Productivity
IMAGE: Getty Images

As an entrepreneur, you know that there’s no time for a break. It’s go-go-go all the time. Those who achieve the greatest success know what it takes to remain productive.

There are are a ton of ways to boost productivity, from a morning workout to a diet change. It’s hard for some to believe, but what you eat will have a positive or negative affect on your productivity.

With a direct impact on cognitive performance, the food choices you make at breakfast or lunch will either propel you to great heights or hold you back for the rest of the day.

You may be familiar with “common” foods that boost productivity, such as eggs, yogurt, bananas, spinach, and walnuts. But did you know there are some things you can eat you might not associate with being super productive? Here are some ideas:

1. Air-popped Popcorn
It may not be wacky in the sense that you have never heard of it, but most people don’t associate popcorn with productivity.

When compared to chips, popcorn is a better pick thanks to its energy boosting capabilities and health benefits (fewer calories). As long as you avoid loads of butter and salt, this makes for a great pick-me-up snack. Put some sriracha on it to spice it up. Added health benefit? Sriracha is made from chili peppers, they boost endorphins which helps make you happier. Bonus #2, chili peppers also spike serotonin, a mood and memory enhancer.

Plus it just makes your environment smell yummy!

2. Quinoa Salad
Quinoa is defined as “a species of the goosefoot genus, a grain crop grown primarily for its edible seeds.”

What the heck does that mean? If you don’t know anything about quinoa, here is your opportunity to learn more. With a solid eight grams of protein per cup, this is a top snack for those times when you need more energy. Here are some quinoa recipes to experiment with.

Grab a quinoa salad for lunch and see how the rest of the day works for you.

3. Sweet Potato Smoothie
Say what? Stick with me for a second.

Sweet potatoes are a great source of collagen which is essential to helping us cope with stress. They taste sweet but they have natural sugars that help give a balanced and regular source of energy.

And although it might not sound as appealing when compared to a sweet berry alternative, this type of smoothie could be just what you need.

Throw a medium baked sweet potato into a blender, along with banana and a teaspoon (or two) of cocoa powder. Add a few ice cubes to cool it down and start your blender. Within seconds, you will have a smoothie that keeps you running at max efficiency all day. Best yet, it tastes good too!

4. Dry-Roasted Edamame
A healthy snack considered wacky by many, dry-roasted edamame contains plenty of fiber, protein, and antioxidants.

The nice thing about this snack is that it can be popped into your mouth on the go. A piece of chocolate or chips may sound more appealing, but that’s only because you have yet to try a handful of dry-roasted edamame.

5. Pepitas
There is more to these green pumpkin seed kernels than a cool name.

Known as one of the world’s healthiest foods, pepitas are packed full of protein, iron, and magnesium. When you combine the health benefits with the delicious taste, you have a snack that will call your name all day long.

By adding these five wacky foods to your diet, you can boost productivity while lessening the likelihood ofmissing valuable time due to an illness, or snacking on unhealthy foods. A true win-win!

PUBLISHED ON: MAR 3, 2016

Facebook: An Emotional Wreck

93% of our daily communication is nonverbal, leaving only 7% for words. So how can social media be a reliable communication channel when it only conveys 7% of our message?

Lets take a step back and divide the 93% of nonverbal communication into specific elements, 38% of nonverbal communication is sound (tonality, attitude, pitch, volume) and 55% is body language (gestures, hand movements, facial expressions).

On social media, email or even texting, vocal elements have been substituted with hashtags and case changes. For example, if you’re trying to be sarcastic, simply end your post with #sarcasm. Throwing some shade? Add #JKNotReally. And if you think you’re not being heard scream your thoughts out LOUD by using capital cases and add as many exclamation marks as YOU CAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Gestures? That’s what emoticons are for. Not enough? Well, you have over 150 sets of stickers to choose from, including our personal favorite, the Power Rangers set. To make your life easier, you can filter them through the different emotions you’d like to express.
Facebook Stickers Facebook, Communication, Digital Media, Public Relations, Strategy

Conversations are being limited to 140 characters; you can technically have a full conversation using emoticons and hashtags, try it. You can even tweet your pizza order to Domino’s with a pizza emoticon.
Dominos Pizza Meme

Not all conversations have diminished, we still write comments when the like button is not enough… oh wait, Facebook, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE? Facebook just rolled out ‘reactions’ so you don’t even have to type.
Facebook Emotions

So what does this mean for brands who use social media as an engagement tool? Social media is one of the leading consumer research tools and brands that listen to their customers and adapt their products and businesses through their customers’ feedback have seen great success. Can brands adapt their strategies to follow the nonverbal movement? Only future software updates can tell us that.

How Good Brands Become Media Darlings

How Good Brands Become Media Darlings. 

Media-facing brand spokespeople are often refined and have a certain “je ne sais quoi” that makes it look effortless. While few may be born with that X-factor, it’s most often the result training, practice and polish.

Whether the interview opportunity is being televised, heard on the radio or your expert commentary included in an online article, the right amount of preparation is paramount.

No matter how the media evolves, television is still a coveted medium. While many other video opportunities are giving brands more opportunities to be heard, TV can have a major impact on a brand, and it’s important that each appearance is met with meticulous preparation and rehearsal.

There are a few key elements that can ensure a seamless televised appearance:

  • Messaging: While any speaker should always feel comfortable on camera, it’s important to make sure that person has a rock-solid knowledge of their topic. The best interviews are running dialogues, not a series of static Q&As. The speaker should be very well-versed and make sure their delivery is natural and not robotic. The quickest way to be cut from a segment or not asked to return is by being cold and sterile. TV loves charisma so practice often, even if it’s with your smartphone’s camera.
  • Questions! There will be a lot of them from the production team, and you should be asking many more. Most national shows have rounds of production meetings, and you’ll need to provide a litany of press materials, bios, collateral and video links, so be prepared. TV production can often move quickly, so be flexible and willing to pivot on a dime
  • Details: Everything from transportation, timing, contacts (and their cell numbers), location, body language and especially attire needs to be considered. While most production teams will have a lot of this information ready, it’s critical to ask even the smallest questions. Knowing that your client won’t blend in with the green screen and be a floating head (yes, we’ve seen it happen to other people!) will ease most fears for all involved and allow the speaker to be relaxed. Tension always shows on camera! Above all else, remember to smile and enjoy the moment!

Radio and podcast are still a fantastic way to have your message heard and can often live on the websites of the outlets for great ripple effects. While many of the same principles above still hold true, paying special attention to the voice is the key to a great interview. Paying attention to things like inflection, pitch, speed and breathing are much more important than the clothes you’re wearing. Avoiding a monotone and labored breathing are nearly equally as important!

Finally, when being interviewed for an online or print article, communicating your messages in an effective manner is the only way to become an influencer in a journalist’s eyes. By not only providing useful information and avoiding excessive industry jargon but also giving soundbites the journalist can extract will go a long way in establishing authority and also making the journalist’s life easier!

The PB&J of Digital Marketing: Content and SEO

Content Marketing has become a buzzword seemingly overnight—but there’s one elusive marketing goal that many marketers don’t realize content marketing can achieve for them: SEO.

Why is this?

Most folks in the marketing space understand that Google operates on a host of proprietary algorithms and ranks webpages in search results based on a number of semi-secret factors. While Google has never released exactly how its algorithms work, over the years, they have released general guidelines to help websites attract the best traffic.

For a great guide to the total history of SEO check out this timeline from MOZ, but as it relates to content marketing, here are the highlights you need to care most about:

  • 2003 – The Florida Update: This was the first time Google penalized sites that employed SEO ploys like keyword-stuffing.
  • 2005 – The Nofollow and Jagger Updates: Google used to rank sites higher that had many inbound links—even links that were left in the comments section of blogs. Nofollow and Jagger stopped giving low-quality inbound links credence.
  • 2009 – The Real-time Search Update: Google started crawling information available on Twitter and other social media channels to include in search rankings—the first time social posts impacted SEO.
  • 2010 – Social Signals: Google confirmed that social signals do impact search rankings.
  • 2011 Panda Update: This update was key in that it not only indexed the amount of content on websites, but actually began to measure the quality of that content.
  • 2012 Penguin Update: Google started penalizing sites still employing spamming SEO tactics such as link farming and key-word stuffing.
  • 2015 – Mobilegeddon: This update favored sites that were optimized to be read on mobile devices.

Overall, Google’s algorithm has become less robotic and reliant on quantitative data, such as how many inbound links you have, how many times you use a key word, how many pages of content you have on your site, etc., and more human by ranking sites through qualitative factors (yes, Google is now judging your blog the same way your high school English teacher would). But don’t freak out—this is actually great news for content marketers because Google’s algorithm is thinking more like us.

However, even as content quality has become increasingly important, we still can’t rely on our power of prose alone to boost our search rankings. There are three core pillars of SEO that factor whether or not your content will help boost your site in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages): on-page factors, off-page factors and social factors.

Let’s assume that the content in question is a run-of-the mill blog post on your company’s website.

When viewing through the lens of on-page factors— these are the things that you build into the structure of your content that allow Google’s crawlers to easily index the information provided. In other words, you need to write your content in such a way that Google can easily discern what that content is about—and what YOU want it to be perceived as being.

Here are some basic boxes you need to check when it comes to your on-page SEO signals:

  • Write metadata
  • Ensure your headlines contain key words
  • Format your headlines with H1, H2, and H3 tags
  • Give your URL string a custom name that also contains your top key words
  • Make sure that you’ve named your images with key words that explain what they are—that’s how Google ranks images in the “image” search function

Next—leverage your new piece of content to boost your site’s SEO through off-page factors. While having too many low-quality links to your site can hurt you, having the right high-quality links to your site can tremendously help you. To achieve this, try to get your content re-published on a site with a high Google PageRank—the score Google uses to quantify what makes a quality website. Aim to get links from sites that have a Google PageRank of at least 3 or 4. Any page rank above 6 is very good. Oh, and P.S. – any institutional site that you can get to link to yours—think .edus and .govs—can tremendously boost your SEO.

Lastly, we mentioned in our SEO timeline that Google takes social factors into consideration when ranking sites. The more people who share the URL to your content on social media, the better. Clearly place social sharing buttons next to your content on your website, making it easy for others to spread it into the social sphere. Also, be sure that you share it yourself to your company and personal channels and use a sticky, shareable headline! Social media is increasingly becoming measure by which Google says “this is a quality piece of content”. Wondering which platform Google gives the most “Google juice” to? Not surprisingly, the underutilized Google+.

There are many other complex strategies to amplify each of these SEO factors in your content marketing strategy, but every good content execution should be in compliance with these three basic areas. You’re already creating lots of content. Make sure it’s helping you win the SEO war!

Social Media: A Balancing Act

For a brand, finding balance in an ever evolving media landscape can be challenging. Mostly because the way consumers behave on social channels is unbalanced. To truly understand the market it’s important for any brand to acknowledge that some consumers are using social media as a means to make purchasing decisions and some are simply looking for the latest grumpy cat video.

Facebook, for instance, started as an online group chat between friends in specific colleges and universities. As it’s evolved, a surplus of content has flooded it. There was a time when one of the pages I managed received over 100 updates within minutes. Luckily, Facebook now has algorithms in place to serve users the content they want to see.

Facebook users (brands and consumers) created an oversharing problem that even Facebook’s most sophisticated algorithms can’t fix. Users started abandoning the crowded Facebook ship and switched to other platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. At the moment, organic reach dominates the “newer” platforms. While there are some paid opportunities, they aren’t as abundant as Facebook. One advantage Facebook does offer is the longevity of a post. With a simple search or click, users can find historical data on a Facebook page dating back to the inception of the page. Memories are key here.

On a good day, the average tweet’s lifespan is around 18 minutes. Lately brands and news outlets have adopted a new strategy that allows them to push the most important tweets on the top of their profiles multiple times throughout the day. They do understand the risk of overlapping audience, but in terms of perishable content, it’s likely that very few people will be served the same message more than once. Additionally, it doesn’t feel like an advertisement rather a reminder of what is important at that time. On the other side, Twitter is incredibly challenging to search and if you miss a post, good luck trying to find it. If Twitter really understands the fleeting nature of messaging, and the average consumer’s attention span, what other platforms could you possible need?

Instagram. Because, everyone is famous on Instagram. Instagram posts receive roughly the same lifespan of Twitter. On average users share over 58 million tweets and 58 million photos on Instagram per day. Right now, Twitter’s growth is slowing while Instagram is on the rise. However, Instagram recently launched a series of branded ads, which leads us to believe they are headed in the same overcrowded, overcluttered and over-advertised audience Facebook has experienced. So, will we leave yet another platform to find the most organic content?

In comes Snapchat… and leaves in 10 seconds or less. Snapchat’s effectiveness comes from its unique ability to share perishable content. It’s really grasped the here now, gone tomorrow mentality. Especially with younger audiences who live with the dreaded FOMO (fear of missing out). Snapchat allows the user to be the center of attention in his or her own story, which is one of the many reasons why Snapchat is more popular among the younger generation. As for the stories shared by friends, the user can skip them with a click. There are still Snapchat ads, but you’re not forced to watch them. Tap the screen and poof! They’re gone.

So what does this mean for a brand? It means balance. A healthy mix of engaging content, well placed and designed advertisements and a deep understanding of the longevity of your message can go far. The best social marketers not only update and engage multiple times per day, but they vary the content understanding each message can’t reach an entirety of audience. But multiple messages that are crated to target a variety of audiences can have lasting effects and achieve brand awareness.