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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

 

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.

Why Everyone Wants to Go Viral

Viral

In an era of Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Periscope, images, links and videos spread like wildfire in the blink of an eye. While many of those images and videos we’re bombarded with are world and regional news and live events, every now and again we’ll see an interesting product, meme or cat video.

Grumpy cat

The most viewed YouTube video of all time is Gangnam Style with more than 2.4 billion views (we warned you, it’s catchy) followed by Charlie Bit My Finger (so cute) and a slew of other music videos and Grumpy Cat memes. As PR pros, we dream about 2.4 billion views and we lose sleep over unique monthly visitors and comparative advertising values, but is there a magic formula to obtain this type of traction and what do we do with it once it’s happened?

Gangnam Style

The quick answer is no and yes. While there’s no specific algorithm that equates to billions of eyes on a product and millions of dollars sold, it’s our job as PR pros to determine the unique qualities of a brand and bring those qualities to light for consumers. We are storytellers at heart; we do all we can to unearth messages that will resonate across the board to a wide variety of audiences. From there, we leverage our relationships and place those stories in outlets and on platforms that we know will generate traction.

Happy Endings

So what do we do with this momentum once we’ve obtained it? Quite honestly, we run like hell with it by continuing to tout those achievements on even MORE outlets and propel the brand into selling heaven. As with all cycles that ebb and flow, there’s always a point when the virality of a message ends. So we look for new stories from a brand, and whether it’s a new products, service or milestone, and we begin again.

Run

Increasing Kickstarter Campaign Awareness with Social Media

Increasing

One of the key components missing from most brands Kickstarter campaigns is a fully integrated social media campaign. In order to avoid losing out on these opportunities use these checklist items to help your social media strategy stay on course.

  1. Amplify messaging about the campaign utilizing all social channels! Are you promoting your campaign on every social platform at your disposal?
  2. Curate engaging and fun content: fun taglines, user generated content and real time photos. Keeping your audience engaged and your content shareable can help expose your campaign to new potential backers.
  3. Your content should be consistent and timely. Social media gives you the opportunity to tell a story. Use daily posts as a portal of insight to make fans feel like they are taking the journey with your brand. You’ll find this can lead to an increase in backers.
  4. Use your social media channels to highlight your team (behind the scenes photos). People want to know who they are helping. An emotional bond will help boost brand affinity.
  5. Tweet a lot & remember that it’s ok to repeat a tweet. Most fans may have missed the tweet the first time around.
  6. Real time engagement is very important. Jump into relevant conversations and introduce your campaign to new eyes.
  7. Submit your Kickstarter campaign to sites and Twitter handles that promote ongoing campaigns
  8. Add CTA’s (Call to Actions). People need to be told what you need them to do with your content.
  9. Introduce extra incentives to encourage backers to share that they’ve contributed to your campaign with their audience.
  10. Feature backers on social channels. You can create an entire campaign highlighting your social backers.
  11. Create short Facebook, vine or Instagram video content featuring the products. Video is just another tool in your social media tool belt to help you reach potential backers.
  12. Reach out and connect with influencers on relevant social channels to introduce them to your product and potentially support & promote your campaign.
  13. Host mini contests outside of the Kickstarter to get fans ramped up. The contests should encourage them to Share, Retweet, Like, Comment and Favorite for chances to win relevant prizes.
  14. Give fans weekly-daily updates to let them know how close you are to reaching the goal. A visual is even better to include.