As many know, the evolution of social media has completely reshaped marketing by providing businesses with the tools that allow them to build loyal followings, create brand awareness and, most of all, generate more sales. What started out as a platform for people to connect with people, social media has quickly become the most effective form of marketing, connecting people with brands.
While Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are still among the most popular platforms leveraged by businesses, Instagram is on the rise and more and more companies are shifting their ad spend towards this channel. Which is a smart move, considering the expected user growth projections. “Instagram is predicted to add 26.9 million users in the U.S. by 2020. That’s far more than Facebook, Twitter or any other social platform.” (Entrepreneur.com ) At Linx, we make sure that our clients are aware of trends like this and help them Think Ahead to take advantage of new and growing channels, always keeping an eye on where their target customers are spending their time.
What makes Instagram a hub businesses and customers is that it offers a combination of popular features from Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat, making it an all-inclusive social media platform. Recently, Instagram has also been one step ahead of its competitors, last week releasing a new video tie-in that goes head-to-head with YouTube and Snapchat. With this feature, influencers can distribute videos within Instagram, that they would otherwise place on other platforms. And, as Instagram is staying ahead of the curve, so should your business. Whether it be implementing story ads, newsfeed ads or partnering with an influencer, there are a multitude of opportunities to reach your customers through Instagram you may be missing out on… and many successful companies are increasing their ROI this way.
If you’re unsure of how to start an Instagram strategy or are struggling to produce an ROI on your current efforts, here are some ways to immediately increase your effectiveness.
Remarket in a new way and get more followers:
Tons of people are engaging with your ads and posts, but none of these people seem to be following your account. How can you change that?
Engaging with the likes, shares and comments you receive, you can convert these non-followers into followers, and eventually into customers. By re-engaging with those consumers who made the first move on your company’s post, it gives you the opportunity to market to them for a second time, and provides them with a unique and personal experience Resulting in a new follow. This approach adds more value and demonstrates your loyalty and care for your “new customers”.
Track every influencer marketing post:
If you are leveraging Instagram influencers, it is important to know that when working with multiple sources, sending them the same standard link will not benefit your company. Each influencer, should be given a unique link, so you are able to track your exact ROI from each of them. These links will help you determine which influencer is driving more traffic and sales to your website or product/services, as well as track each visitors’ behavior. With this information, you are able to shift your spend to the influencers producing the most the most ROI for your company.
Optimize your funnels with custom audiences:
As many of you know, Facebook feeds into Instagram, allowing marketers to run Facebook Ads and Instagram ads simultaneously. And, when creating an campaign on Facebook, you are able to create unique audiences based on any targeting parameters, as well as retarget visitors or purchasers. They key is not to run general ads, but rather various ads with unique messaging that speaks directly to your different segments at each stage of the sales funnel. Tracking every interaction and optimizing every element will extract maximum value at every opportunity.
Instagram is moving at a fast rate and it doesn’t seem to have a plan of slowing down anytime soon, that means businesses have to react to all these opportunities that instagram has to offer.That’s why our client rely on us to… Think Ahead! Contact us today and let us help you build a true brand value and increase your business ROI on Instagram and react faster new instagram features.
This month, Linx began working with a new client, Madison’s Niche, a lifestyle boutique with four locations in the heart of Long Island’s most popular towns. The client turned to Linx for help in bringing the growing success of their store locations to the web. With no current website, the opportunity to open a new channel for sales – “a fifth storefront” – is a sure strategy to take the brand’s success to the next level.
Linx’s key team members began the process by visiting the newest Madison’s Niche location in Stony Brook Village. It was important for us to get a feel for the ambiance of the store and the brand. Immediately upon entering, it was clear to us that the vibe was high-end, fashion-forward, unique and elegant. This was the feeling we needed to capture for the e-commerce website.
After our location visit, our design team worked to develop a mood board, which outlined the color palettes, imagery presentations, competitive analysis, typography, and overall look and feel for the brand that will serve as the foundation for all design elements, including the website, moving forward. Reviewing this with the client, we discovered that we were on track with what Madison’s Niche had envisioned their physical space might look like on the web.
Next, our customer experience experts got to work on mapping out the user experience and interface (UX/UI) functionality for an optimal shopping experience for users. This requires a deep-dive into the stores’ products and how they are presented and categorized, as well as various online shopping behaviors, to ensure navigating the site and finding products is simple and easy for users.
Linx is just getting into the planning phase of the website project, working closely with the client to develop the design and infrastructure foundation for the new e-commerce website. We expect the website to launch for Fall 2018 and are excited for Madison’s Niche to grow their customer base and bring their unique shopping experience to the web and shoppers nationwide. Check back for more updates on the online store launch and, in the meantime, visit the temporary splash page we created for the brand here.
The traditional means of attaining a loyal customer base by “buying” them through previous, time-tested means—such as broadcast media and PPC— is becoming less and less effective—and harder to monetize. The truth is that growing your audience takes time and money.
That is why Linx is helping our clients build relationships with B2B and B2C influencers to optimize their budgets and make greater impacts. Linx has long emphasized the importance of social media as a primary means of outreach—and the importance of Influencers within that medium.
The Importance of Modern Influencers
Unlike the traditional means of building reach and frequency through earned or bought media, the digital age has completely democratized both the means of customer outreach—and the strategies with which marketers can successfully reach their target audiences Today, generating reach to build a quality audience through recognizing Influencers can actually improve brand trust and value.
Today, the top TV shows get an audience of about 15 million—a drastic drop in historic highs just a decade ago. These days, a new flock of media stars are creating their own online channels with millions of followers and viewers, establishing for themselves the crucial status of effective Influencer. Through social media platforms, today’s top Influencers are capturing an audience upwards of 25 million.
In one incredible example, this year marked a crucial recognition of the growing importance of self-made Influencers. At New York Fashion Week this past September, social media fashion Influencers were given front-row seats next to some of the industry’s most established names—finding previously unknown Influencers ring-side with such fashion powerhouses as famed Vogue editor, Anna Wintour.
This request was made by the brands themselves who are now paying individuals millions a year to help market their wares.
How Can You Utilize Social Media-Driven Influencers To Your Brand?
It all begins with the by building the right relationships with the right influencers. Here are some fast-track ideas to get you started.
• Finding the Right Influencer
As the importance of Influencers has become more and more apparent to marketers, specialized databases have been created to cater to the needs of every industry. If you want to save on the time and effort that a broad search engine method represents, there are now many options to help you better-target your search. New platforms like Traackr and inPowered can quickly match you with some of the best Influencers for your brand.
• Get Your Influencer Involved From the Ground Up
When you’re launching a new product/service, you need to introduce it in a way that would turn heads and appeal to the target audience at the same time. This is where involving an Influencer early-on is crucial. Get influencers involved in designing your new product from the beginning. Your Influencer will then promote this partnership with their loyal followers—which will not only educate them about the product but also build hype around it.
• The Give and Take of Social Media Promotions
Even something as simple as a tweet or an Instagram post can make a huge difference for your product launch if you happen to choose the right influencers. You will need to approach the influencer first, build a connection with them, send some samples, and request for a mention on social media. When someone with significant influence on your target audience says something positive about the product, it’s going to build hype and establish trust among the audience.
• The Influencer Marketplace
If searching for the best Influencer to meet your branding needs one your own isn’t quite turning up the results you’d hoped, there is now the option of utilizing an Influencer Marketplace to help both marketers and Influencers find each other. New websites like TapInfluence bridges that gap by bringing the two together. Here, potential Influencers agree to be part of the branding campaign and list the types of activities in which they’d be interested. In return, the brands themselves can then match up Influencers with their needs, crafting a symbiotic relationship where both benefit—as well as the customer.
Staying Ahead of the Curve
With each of these concepts in mind, the most important lesson to be learned is that social media, coupled with the proven value of trusted Influencers, can benefit those organizations who learn to monitor online digital trends within their industry. Monitoring creates the knowledge of who is leading the conversation and how to participate in it. Today, Linx specializes in monitoring those trends. But more importantly, we creatively put them to use for our clients.
With the pace of information moving at an ever-increasing rate, marketers have to be true to a brands values and react faster to opportunities that present themselves. Planning can only take you so far! That’s why our client relies on us to… Think Ahead!
Contact us today and let us help you use every element of today’s modern technologies to reach your demographic.
Facebook’s New Advertising Policy Forces Companies to Improve Customer Service
Facebook has put a new policy in motion to fight against yet another form of advertising abuse in an effort to prevent “bad shopping experiences,” and to avoid consumer frustrations with the Facebook platform. Users will now be surveyed on their experience if, after clicking on a Facebook Ad, they purchase something. If a business continues to receive poor reviews, Facebook could potentially limit or even ban that company from advertising on their platform in the future.
What Does This Mean For Advertisers?
Well, some businesses may see this new policy as a negative, but in reality, this can be an opportunity for companies to improve their customer service and operations. Many organizations may think they are currently serving their customers well, from their perspective, but fail to really analyze their internal processes from their customers’ point of view. That’s why it’s so important that marketing extends from the first customer touchpoint through the entire customer journey and relationship with your brand.
Think Ahead: Marketing Beyond the Ad
At Linx, our Strategic Advisory services approach marketing in a holistic way that includes a deep-dive into every client’s operations and processes – the root of the customer experience. By analyzing and restructuring organizations for optimal marketing success, we are building the foundation for memorable and enjoyable brand experiences that lead to customer retention and brand loyalty. And, your operations and processes must change and evolve as your business grows, and as new and changing marketing trends, and customer needs, develop.
So, Will The New Policy Affect Your Brand Negatively Or Positively?
The answer is… it’s up to you! Companies who have adopted an agile culture in today’s ever-changing world are primed to continuously improve their customer experience and grow their business. These are the brands who are listening to and communicating with their customers, personalizing their experiences and engaging them in more than just their products or services. Companies that are not doing this are risking the retention of customers to those who are!