What is… Social Media Marketing?

What is… Social Media Marketing?

The key word in social media marketing is the emphasis on “social”. In its most basic description, social media marketing is simply word-of-mouth, powered by technology. Social media networks have been engineered as the modern way to connect people, build relationships, and assist social interactions. It is easy to share information and current content with your friends, family and coworkers, and the vast majority of people presently have at least one social media platform where they connect and interact with others.

The fact that so many people are involved in social media means that it has become an essential platform for all sorts of businesses to attract consumers and drive their business. Social media gives your business a place to communicate with your customers, and expand the widespread reach and knowledge about your specific services and products. It allows you a brilliant platform to create and expand a brand for your business, which is essential in every form of marketing.

The main downfall of businesses on social media is that many assume social media marketing is only worthwhile and successful for small businesses, or new companies that are starting out. This couldn’t be more incorrect, and there are many searchable examples of leading brands that have been boosted by successful social media marketing campaigns. However, saying that, it is a great opportunity for smaller businesses and those starting out to get their services and products made known by a wider audience online. Although, it is crucial to continue your presence on social media after you have reached a level of business success and recognition.

socmed

 

The Many Platforms

When getting started with social media marketing for your business, there are such a variety of social media platforms, meaning it can be difficult to navigate and decide which channel would be right for you. All of the varied social media seem to offer similar services, with slight differences and methods of getting your desired consumer attention. However, usually they fit into 3 categories, which are: word-based, image-based, and video-based platforms, generally:

- Word-Based Social Media – Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn
- Image-Based Social Media – Pinterest, Instagram
- Video-Based Social Media – YouTube, Vine

However, a few of these categories do overlap, and most contribute a combination of images and text, with opportunities to upload videos from platforms, such as YouTube. Yet, although there are similarities between a few of the various social media channels, there are often distinct differences between the audiences that each platform reaches. The audience is often the pivotal reason to choose a certain social media network, as it all depends on the types of consumers you would like to reach for your business. Each business should have a certain kind of consumer in mind, and cater to that consumer through their branding and marketing.

If you are still having difficulty deciding, then start with the most populated social media channels. The most popular social media platform that has the biggest audience potential is unarguably Facebook, with approximately 1 billion users worldwide, and an average user share of 2.5 billion pieces of content every day. Facebook is definitely the place to start advertising and marketing your business and brand image. Also, the network makes it easy to start up your own company page and allows your personal Facebook profile to maintain the page as admin. Another positive of Facebook is that it’s the main network with a wide variety of user demographics, including users of all age and genre very equally.

If you search for the majority of companies and brands on Facebook, you will find a page for them, as it is the prominent network. However, this doesn’t mean that Facebook is necessarily the best for promoting your business and gaining success and sales quickly. This is why other brands expand onto other social media platforms, and try to gain as much exposure and consumer reach as possible.
 

Handling Channels

If it is more effective and beneficial for your business and brand expansion to diversify onto many various social media accounts, then how can these networks be best handled? There are a few alternating thoughts about how to make the most of the separate networks. For example, some believe that it is beneficial to put different information on the various channels, as the same people who follow you on one social media network may well follow you on your other ones. Therefore, making sure that you share different, interesting content on all of the different channels may well be helpful.

However, the other thought is to share consistent content over most of your social media, to help with business and brand continuity. This seems to be more of an accurate way to go about social media marketing, and makes sure that all of your online audience and consumers can see what you are posting. Also, it seems to be the case that various demographics use different social media platforms, so sharing similar relevant content over all of your social media channels will invariably reach different consumers.

socialmedicon1

 

Successful Social Media Marketing Campaign

If you are still wondering about the success of social media marketing, and how it can help your business benefit, then there are so many good, fun examples to be found online! Here is one UK example that you will probably remember and appreciate:

One of the biggest successes in 2013 revolved around Three Mobile and their dancing pony. The campaign was based on a television advert about a Shetland pony moon walking across the countryside to the sound of “Everywhere” by Fleetwood Mac, which really grasped viewers’ attentions. The advert ended with the hashtag #danceponydance, which then sparked the attention online and over social media. The video went viral right away, and consumers utilised their hashtag all over Facebook and mainly Twitter. The video went up on YouTube, and achieved 1.5 million views in the first week, and currently it has gained around 10 million views to date.

Three Mobile’s campaign also included a second part, which was entirely online, and revolved around their ‘Pony Mixer’: dressing up your own pony and picking a song for the pony to dance to. The whole campaign lasted precisely 17 days, and over this period the results are clear: 1.3 million ponies generated on the Pony Mixer, 190,000 Tweets using #danceponydance, and a total of 100 million overall consumer impressions. However, the results are not just online, as the positive sentiment of the brand increased by approximately 67%, whereas Three had previously had quite a negative public impression before. This undoubtedly led to a greater success for the UK mobile network, through public perception and knowledge of the brand alone.

3pony
ponymixer

 

Why Choose Social Media?

Ultimately, all companies and businesses utilise social media in some way, and you don’t have to put on a massive marketing campaign in order to get noticed and help your brand awareness. Sometimes, the most effective social media marketing is just making sure that your social media feeds are kept up to date with relevant, fun posts and information for your consumers.

One example of continued success over social media is the brand of Oreo, which is an American biscuit. Oreo simply focuses on sharing created images over their feeds, mainly utilising Twitter and Instagram. They create images that are similar to adverts, but can be shared easily and more cost effectively online. A particular successful image they created and shared was during the 2013 Superbowl, at the time of the blackout. They created a real-time social media stunt and generated a fun, relevant image, with the tagline “you can still dunk in the dark”. This was both witty and effective, and immediately gained mass sharing over social media. Their Twitter and Instagram feeds are full of funny and shareable images that relevantly advertise the brand.

Oreo-Tweet

 

Many businesses understand the role of social media marketing, and how it can be cost effective and make huge gains for their brand awareness and all round sales. However, if you are stuck for time to effectively handle your business’ social media feeds and marketing campaigns, this is where Bright Yellow Creative Group can help!

We can handle multiple social media feeds for your business, and share fresh, interesting content over all of the channels. This will allow you to focus on your business alone and creating your brilliant products and service, with the ease of knowing that your social media networks are all taken care of. Social media marketing simply needs a lot of focus and an everyday presence in order to connect with viewers successfully, and be utilised in a beneficial way to improve your business and sales figures.

Bright Yellow Creative offers several varied social media marketing packages, which will include as many social media accounts, and as much brand-related, fresh, original content that you would like. Utilise your social media beneficially, and allow it to work for you, creating mass brand awareness that will directly increase your consumer base. Take a look at our bespoke social media services here!

We will boost your brand, starting now! Contact us here today for more details!

Instagram vs Pinterest – Visual Marketing to Improve Your Business

Instagram vs Pinterest – Visual Marketing to Improve Your Business

Social media marketing has become more important than ever, with visual social media taking the lead on the traditional text-based channels. The majority of social media platforms utilise imagery and videos to boost their content, however the most effective way to make the most of visual marketing is through social media channels that generate imagery and videos specifically.

As far as video based, YouTube takes the clear lead as the main go-to for videos relating to all sorts of purposes, including brand marketing. Although there are other video based platforms available, including Vine and Vimeo, the niche isn’t as competitive. However, with regards to image based social media, there appear to be two distinct platforms, which seem similar in offering identical services. These two options are Instagram and Pinterest. These channels often make businesses feel torn with regards to which one to choose to promote their brand.

We will discuss the main points of interest for both platforms, and see how Instagram and Pinterest compare. Therefore, hopefully working out which visual platform would be most beneficial to boost your brand.

 

Users

Pinterest is one of the fastest growing social media networks, currently weighing in with approximately 70 million regular users. Also, Pinterest is unique in offering an audience that is predominantly female at a majority of approximately 68%, with the largest gender difference of any other social media channel. Pinterest users also tend to be slightly older in general, with the core demographic being 18-34 year olds.

In comparison, Instagram has a phenomenal 200 million active and regular users, with approximately 45 million photos shared and 1 billion photos “liked” every day. Males and females are more evenly represented on the platform, although females just take the majority at 55% of the users. The application is also most popular with younger users, and has the same core demographic of 18-34 year olds as Pinterest. However, this core demographic is far bigger, making up nearly 70% of users. Also, the popularity drops dramatically with regards to older users. Interestingly, the most popular (or “liked”) brand on Instagram at this moment is the official MTV account, which perhaps sums up the target audience within Instagram quite accurately.

 

Engagement

As far as user engagement, Instagram far outweighs the engagement rate of Pinterest, possibly due to the fact that Instagram has over double the amount of active users. Additionally, Instagram’s user engagement has over 50 times the engagement rate of Facebook, as well as 20 times the engagement of Twitter, according to recent research. With regards to Instagram vs. Pinterest: two thirds of Instagram users use the channel everyday, whereas only one quarter of Pinterest users use the network daily.

However, as far as accessibility goes for both Instagram and Pinterest, Instagram does seem to be more difficult to access, as the platform is only currently available through a phone application. Although Instagram makes it possible to view the site online on a computer, you are limited in what you can do on the computer. You can create an Instagram account on your computer, as well as search for users and view public profiles, and choose whether to follow or unfollow other users. It is also possible to engage with other users and brands, as you can like and comment on content freely from a computer platform. However, it isn’t possible to view who users follow, or other users who are following them. And, more importantly, the platform doesn’t allow you to upload content from your computer, including profile pictures, and the only way you can edit your profile online on a computer is through changing your written profile bio.

With regards to Pinterest and accessibility, you are able to fully access and create a Pinterest account using your computer online solely. It is also possible to get a Pinterest application for your phone, where you can generate pictures and other users’ content in a similar way to Instagram, however this is not necessary in order to get the most out of the platform. Conversely, Pinterest works better used from your computer, and allows you an interesting platform to view other users’ images and content. Pinterest looks aesthetically like an online pin board, and lets you easily view and curate other users’ content onto your own Pinterest boards. In this way, it appears far more accessible than Instagram, and you can engage with the platform easier than if it were mainly on a phone application.

 

instaheadlogo1

 

Content

With regards to content, this is where the two are most dissimilar, surprisingly. At first look, it appears the content would be practically identical, as they are both visual social media channels that generate images mainly. However, the main difference is in the content you can generate onto your personal and business Pinterest and Instagram accounts. Specifically, Instagram promotes original content, and encourages users to create photos that they can edit with filters and other photo altering tools on the application. Whereas Pinterest allows users to curate other users’ content onto their own profiles as they wish, so long as they keep the sources.

On Instagram, the platform is based on uploading your own content, which can either be a photo that you have already taken on your phone, or the user can take a photo directly through the application. There are many options to put filters over the images, to enhance them or make them look a certain way, as well as other editing tools. However, with Instagram, it isn’t possible to re-post, or generate any content that belongs to other users, and the stress is very much on fresh, original user-created content. Therefore, the main way you can interact with other users is through “liking” their images, or commenting.

Pinterest is therefore slightly different in its content generation. On Pinterest, you are allowed to “re-pin” other users’ content: in fact, the majority of posts on Pinterest are “re-pins” from other content, or from outside websites. You are also able to upload your own original content, however there isn’t as much emphasis on this. Also, there aren’t any tools or plugins for editing or altering your images, and the upload method is quite simple. If you wanted to upload content onto Pinterest, they give you the option to Pin from outside websites, via the URL, or upload from content on your computer. Some outside websites also make their images able to be “Pinned” straight from their pages, and add a “hover-on” button, which appears when you pass your mouse over the image.

 

pinheadlogo1

 

Linkbuilding

One of the main pros of using Pinterest for your business, rather than Instagram, is that you can utilise linkbuilding far more easily and efficiently on Pinterest. The majority of the images on Pinterest are links, and when you click on the image it takes you to the website source. Therefore, when you upload your own original content, you can include link backs to your website and business. This also makes it a lot easier to upload written blog articles from your site, as you can “Pin” the main image from your website, and add the description, so that the image links back to the article. This makes it a lot easier to find your article and website, and improves the number of links you have built.

Pinterest is one of the main social media channels that can create the most referrals and links to your website, and studies have shown that the network often generates more referrals than Twitter, for example. It is easy to see why, as each image has a website link and source behind the content. Also on Pinterest, they allow you to include a large description to accompany your image, and often it is featured just as important as the image itself.

This is completely different to the feature of links and linkbuilding on Instagram. On Instagram, the images aren’t able to have a link source when you click on them, either on the phone application or the website. Also, if you add a link into the description, you are only able to click on this on their phone application currently. This is similar to their use of hashtags – they only work on the application, and don’t come up as links on the website at all. So, you would only capable of copy and pasting the link if you were on the website. This means that Instagram doesn’t add to your business as far as linkbuilding, and isn’t classed as a very impressive referral site.

 

Winner

In conclusion, in the debate of whether Instagram or Pinterest is more effective for your business, there doesn’t seem to be an exclusively clear winner.

Both Instagram and Pinterest are popular photo-based platforms, with similar audiences who are interested in attractive, original content. Also, they are both great for sharing your visual social media, including images and videos, in order to effectively showcase and attract interest to your business and brand. However, for people who believe that they are inherently similar, that is not entirely true, as there are clear differences between them. They have completely different pros and cons and can’t fully compare, as their uses are quite conflicting.

Instagram has more users, and is more focused on original, fresh content, whereas Pinterest is more accessible from various platforms and is more beneficial towards linkbuilding and generating website referrals. Basically, it completely depends on your needs and requirements as a business, as to which one to choose. Or, if you are still stuck with your decision – choose both!

 

endhead1

 

If you would like to learn more about both Pinterest and Instagram as social media channels, and how they can benefit and support your business, please take a look at our social media services here! (Additionally: more details about Instagram here, and more about Pinterest here!)

Bright Yellow Creative can help improve your visual social media marketing, which will boost your business and brand!

So, if you would like us to help you by setting up, or monitoring and adding to, your Pinterest or Instagram account for your business, please contact us here today!

Our Guide to Search Engine Optimising Your Social Media – Part 2

Our Guide to Search Engine Optimising Your Social Media – Part 2

Welcome to the second part of our SEO through social media guide! We have already discussed how to get the most out of your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram profiles, which you can access here. In this Part 2, we will explore Pinterest, YouTube, Vine and LinkedIn, and how to Search Engine Optimise these platforms and get the most out of them for your business and brand.

Firstly, a reminder again: for all of the social media accounts, you must ensure certain things are on point, for example: you must use relevant profile pictures, headers or banners, descriptions, URLs, and links or linkbuilding. The various platforms have some differences, but these are usually similar, and you must ensure the information is fully correct.

This is Part 2 of our Guide to Search Engine Optimising Your Social Media explaining how to utilise your social media profiles, and make them work for your business:

pin2

Pinterest

Using Pinterest as a platform to Search Engine Optimise your business and brand is a relatively new method, although it is becoming highly effective. Particularly as, recently, Pinterest created “Pinterest for Businesses”, which is essentially an opportunity to get analytic reports and various other benefits. In order to access this, however, you would need to have an active business page, as well as the newest available version of Pinterest. Here, we are going to guide you through simply creating your business Pinterest account, and how to utilise SEO through the profile.

After you ensure that your profile picture, profile title and URL are all relevant to your business, you can utilise the description tool again. On Pinterest, it is important to keep the description brief and use keywords, using relevant information about your business and brand. Pinterest uses a separate line for your website URL, and allows you to verify your website on the account. In order to verify your site, you would need to upload a file or plugin for your website, including a verification code that Pinterest gives you. Then, your website will appear as verified and it will make your Pinterest account more reliable and legitimate.

Pinterest works as an online pinboard, and the best way to use it for your business is to create a good number of boards on various topics, which all relate back to your brand image and values. Pinterest makes it easy to “like” and Re-Pin relevant content from other boards and users, as well as images and content from other websites, other than your own. However, when you can upload interesting created content from your website, do so, as this will create even more backlinks to your website from this social media platform.

This platform is similar to Twitter, in that it works on a follower basis, and you must follow people in order to generate follow-backs. However, Pinterest makes it possible to either only follow one specific board from a user, or the option to “follow all boards”, which means you are following all of the content that user uploads. This means that it is possible for other users to follow the boards that they are interested in, without necessarily following your entire account, which is helpful as it creates a wider interest in your brand and business. Also, Pinterest is open to allow users to Re-Pin without necessarily following any board, which creates a wider share and potential audience for your profile and brand.

youtube2

YouTube

As with your other social media accounts, it is firstly important to choose a relevant title, URL, profile picture and header for your YouTube account. However, make sure to follow their given guidelines and infographic to make the most of your header on your YouTube profile, as it can be tricky! Also ensure to include a relevant, brief page description including good keywords. YouTube is a platform owned by Google; therefore everything you include on the account is searchable in a similar way to Google+.

Google Search contains a video search application where you can find and watch YouTube videos on Google, which means your uploaded videos are all searchable content separately. However, the content included in your video is not included in the search, and they only generate your search rankings through your video titles and descriptions. Therefore, it is important to include relevant titles, which include keywords and commonly searched for terms in your niche market, to help improve your Search Engine Optimisation. YouTube also allows you to include as long a description as you like, and it is recommended to make use of this and write long, keyword-inclusive, descriptions on each of your uploaded videos. Google has access to all of the content in this description, meaning they can be ranked in searches as well.

It is important to utilise YouTube to create original, unique content to share and generate interest in your business and brand. You can share YouTube content and videos over your other social media accounts, as well as embed the videos directly into your website. Using YouTube, your business can create fun ways to convey information to your consumers, rather than through writing, and, in a way, YouTube often serves more as an application to enhance your other social media accounts and website rather than a social media account on its own. However, it is still important to encourage YouTube subscribers and linkbuilding to your YouTube account, as YouTube is a public site where people can access and view your video content without requiring a YouTube account, which encourages furthering your search rankings and traffic to your website and other social media accounts.

vine2

Vine

Vine works in a very similar way to Instagram, only instead of images, Vine is a social media platform based on short video clips. The video clips can only be up to 6 seconds long, and creates a more fun social media video platform to share uniquely created content. It offers another exciting way to share insights into your company, and create more accessibility into your business and brand for consumers. For example, you can share short tutorials, reveal snippets of work information, office space or employees. Vine also utilises hashtags as a search method, allowing users to find video content based on keywords in your videos’ titles and descriptions.

Vine also makes it possible, similar to YouTube, to share your videos and content onto other websites and social media accounts, meaning it is a good way to share information and improve your brand awareness. This is good for Search Engine Optimisation as it creates a web of links back to your website and business over the various accounts. Other people can also share your Vine videos, which would improve your brand awareness. The most successful Vine videos are ones that become viral, meaning they are shared and seen by a wide audience of potential consumers, who will all be made aware of your business.

The most important factor for Vine is to keep in mind your brand image and values, and keep relevant to what you want to convey to your consumers and wider audience. Pick a relevant, searchable account title and description, as well as profile picture, and upload videos that reflect your values. It is also paramount to create interesting content that will interest and appeal to users, and draw attention and traffic back to your website and business, encouraging success and sales.

linkedin2

LinkedIn

Within the LinkedIn social media platform itself, the search engine results are displayed using an internal set of algorithms to prioritise certain profiles over others. One of the main ways LinkedIn ranks you in the search is through the size of your network and the amount of connections you have. LinkedIn shares results that have at least some connection with the user searching, even if the connection is only 2nd or 3rd level. This makes it paramount to expand your network, and create connections with as many users and profiles as possible, in order to become a prioritised search result.

LinkedIn is very much a platform where businesses can connect with other businesses, and having a business LinkedIn profile helps your business appear more legitimate and reliable for consumers. In order to increase how searchable your business is on LinkedIn, it is important to fill out your profile completely in every relevant area, and constantly use keywords and correct information. It is also possible to use LinkedIn, similarly to other social media accounts, to share information and fresh content, in order to encourage engagement and connections.

One of the main ways you can expand your network and number of connections on LinkedIn is through participating in LinkedIn groups. This increases your LinkedIn profile awareness to other users, and allows you a way to connect to people easily and share information about your business and brand. It is important to use these LinkedIn groups to contribute content and engage with others, and encourage consumers to discover more about your business. It is important to share links to your other social media accounts, as well as your website, on LinkedIn, as well as linking to your LinkedIn from your website and other accounts. This is important in order to become fully Search Engine Optimised on the LinkedIn platform, as well as in a search engine.

Ultimately

the more social media platforms your business expands within, and the profiles you create, will help increase your business’ online presence. It is important to attempt to target all of these separate social media consumer bases in order to expand your brand awareness and Search Engine Optimisation. It is useful to understand how to fully utilise each account separately, however, and learn the strengths and positives that the accounts can bring to your business.

Remember, if you have any further questions about SEO and social media; don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. Also, if you want to read about Search Engine Optimisation through different social media platforms, don’t forget to read Part 1 of Our Guide to Search Engine Optimising Your Social Media here.

Bright Yellow Creative has a wealth of experience in social media marketing, and how to optimise each platform to benefit businesses. We understand the role of Search Engine Optimisation in creating links to your website, and generating interest in all aspects of your brand and its online presence. Improving your search rankings directly widens your business’ consumer base, and therefore increases your overall success and sales.

Discover more about the social media services we can offer here!

We can help your business to improve your search rankings and overall success starting today – Get in touch with us here!