Posts tagged with "marketing"

4 Ways to Grow Your Beauty Website

By Katie Lundin

Whether you sell make-up, haircare, or skincare products, run a beauty salon, nail bar, barbershop, or spa… as a beauty industry insider, you know that looks are important.

This is especially true when it comes to the way people judge websites.

How a website looks is important. In fact, seventy-five percent of people judge the credibility of a business based on its website.

If your beauty website looks bad, it’s turning potential clients away.

Here are 4 proven techniques to help your beauty website win more customers.

1. Showcase your unique brand

Just as you help your clients to look the best version of themselves, your website design must showcase your brand’s unique identity.

This is especially important for new beauty businesses. If you’re putting together your business plan while preparing to start a new beauty business, don’t overlook the importance of creating a strong visual identity for your business.

After all, clients don’t want to look like everyone else. They want to showcase their own unique self. And, they look to see if your beauty business stands out in unique ways and offers something special and different.

For example, if your website uses a generic template and looks like thousands of other salons, nail care, or makeup sites, people won’t be able to differentiate you from your many competitors.

In fact, this is true for every aspect of your company’s brand identity, including your business name and your company logo. Both must be unique if you want to build a brand that stands out and attracts great clients.

The differentiating factors that make your business unique must be visible so that your clients and prospective clients (the people who are naturally attracted to your brand’s mission, aesthetic, and personality) can identify you.

A well-designed website will show what makes your beauty business unique and attract those clients.

And don’t be deterred by the price of custom website design. Some beauty business owners worry that the cost of website design can be prohibitively high.

It’s true that many design companies and agencies charge thousands of dollars for their services. But this isn’t universally true (crowdspring’s custom website designprojects start at just $899, including all fees).

Action items:

● Work with a strong design team to develop a brand-informed logo. Then use that logo as the guide for your website’s visual design and all subsequent visual branding.

● Prioritize customization – avoid generic web design templates that don’t allow you to customize.

● Choose fonts (no more than 2-3), colors, graphics, and photos, that evoke your brand’s personality.

● Include content on your website that speaks with your brand’s voice. Be sure to let your personality shine through.

2. Design your website for fast load speeds

As we emphasized in our guide on how to start a business,

Your website is one of your new business’s most important ambassadors and a crucial component of your marketing and branding strategy.

Between seconds 4 and 5 of your website’s load time, 20% of viewers have already left your site.

Not only that, the faster your website loads, the higher it ranks with search engines. So, the easier it is for people to find.

3. Make it easy for guests to book appointments

Are you a make-up artist, stylist, barber, or cosmetologist?

Then you need an integrated booking system for your website.

Service-oriented beauty businesses rely on bookings. But, managing your schedule takes time away from the tasks that actually get you paid – like cutting hair, applying makeup, or performing facials.

And guests have come to expect to be able to book online. The cat’s already out of the bag.

So, if your website doesn’t support online booking, it’ll look inferior to your competitors who do offer that convenient feature.

On the other hand, if you’re the first salon, nail bar, or barbershop in your market to enable people to schedule appointments online, you’ll have a natural advantage over your competition.

And, there are free salon-booking software apps! So, the cost isn’t a barrier. There’s no excuse not to impress potential customers with the convenience of online scheduling.

Action items:

● Check out these tried and true online booking options:

Fresha – This free online scheduling tool (formerly known as “Shedul”) is packed with features designed specifically for businesses in the beauty and wellness industry. There is also a paid version, but Fresha’s free service can definitely stand on its own.

Schedulicity – Schedulicity is another powerful online booking software. This service offers a la carte pricing that allows you to customize your service so you’re only paying for the features you need.

Timely – Timely claims to be the world’s smartest online booking software. You can test their claim yourself with their free trial. Once your trial is over, you can continue with Timely for low monthly rates tiered to grow with the size of your team.

● Choose an online booking service and integrate it with your website for easy, automated bookings.

● If you don’t currently sell custom-branded beauty products, consider adding your own unique line. Many manufacturers will let you private label their productsand you’ll just need to create custom packaging design to showcase your own unique brand.

4. Show your style and skill with photos

Concrete examples are more powerful than vague promises.

Every beauty business claims to make people look good. But, including pictures of your work (or people wearing your products) on your website shows that you can really deliver.

And, beauty is subjective. Your products or services aren’t for everyone. They’re for the people who share your aesthetic.

Posting pictures that showcase your brand’s unique style will attract customers who share it. So, you’ll gain, and retain, more customers.

So, incorporate photos into your website that demonstrate your skill and your style. Show potential clients that you can be trusted to make them look and feel beautiful.

Action items:

● If you’re a freelancer, create a gallery showcasing your best manicures, hair color clients, or make-up applications. (And always ask permission before sharing any photos of your clients.)

● Do you run a salon or spa? Then dedicate a page to each team member and include a gallery of their best work.

● If you manufacture beauty products, encourage your clients to share pictures of themselves wearing your products on Instagram with a custom hashtag. Then embed a widget into your website that automatically displays those photos.

● Allow customers to upload pictures with their product reviews.

If you want to be the next Sephora or Glossier, you must have stellar branding. And, that includes a professional, custom website that shows the world what your beauty brand is all about.

About Author:

Katie Lundin is a Marketing and Branding Specialist at crowdspring, one of the world’s leading marketplaces for crowdsourced logo design, web design, graphic design, product design, and company naming services. She regularly writes about entrepreneurship, small business, and design on crowdspring’s award-winning small business blog.

IQ Advantage

IQ Advantage, founded by the serial entrepreneur Jackson Reding, is a digital agency based out of Los Angeles. They represent everything a modern day agency should be representing and are operating through three branches:

  • IQ Advertisement
  • IQ Talent
  • IQ Media

IQ Advertisement

IQ has been praised by over 750 clients for its top tier advertisement services, its social media growth and its leadership for businesses and influencers. It hosts loop giveaways and teaches different sorts of growth methods, like the fan page method among various others. 

They also works directly with record labels to achieve a stronger social media presence for artists, models, bloggers and entrepreneurs.

IQ Talent

Its talent department, IQ Talent, is build upon the slogan: “The vertex of an innovative management agency.”

Over 95% of their signed influencers are overwhelmingly satisfied with their way of operating because of their transparency and way to upscale brand endorsements and sponsorships.

Reding explains how affiliate campaigns are often the first move to build trust between the specific influencer and the brand. The projects are presented to the brand as “pay to play,” with an upfront service fee to their influencers to execute the given work for the campaign. Over 90% of affiliate campaigns result in up-front payment so that the brands realize the value of the influencers. As Reding says, “Our only goal is to generate as high a profit for our in house talents as humanly possible. That’s the simple, yet effective, foundation of IQ Talent.”

In the talent section, they involve the media department for all tailor-made campaign presentations for brands, media kits and other visuals that benefit and heighten the negotiation foundation for upscaling the price per campaign.

Their talents have worked with big cooperations such as boohoo, lululemon, and PrettyLittleThing along with various hotels and travel agencies. 

IQ Media

Its media department has worked with some of the biggest aviation companies in the United States. Their main focus is to produce top tier commercials for PR and social media use. 

Among others, IQ Media has produced for Coastal Helicopters (Private Jet Charter), Aviator, Bang Energy and Visit Dubai among others.

What’s next for IQ?

The future is bright for IQ despite the current situation with COVID-19. It is expanding by the minute with more departments, but if you ask Reding, the key is to keep the quality at an all time high, which can be a challenge when scaling quickly. By always meeting critiques with an open mind to learn, changing how things are done if necessary and acting fast to develop as a company as well as people, this goal is attainable.

So far, the Californian-based agency has been performing above all expectations through the world crisis of COVID-19, and they intend to keep pushing for more.

Digital illustration for 360 Magazine

Brand Building In A Recession

Building Your Brand During A Recession

By Lauren Howe and Teri Uyovbievbo, co-founders of up-and-coming South Bay marketing start-up, The Social Block

The onset of COVID-19 has ultimately ended a decade-long trend of economic growth in the United States. In it’s place, we now have the highest rates of unemployment since the Great Depression. The unprecedented economic downturn has also ushered in the swift demise of formerly successful corporations.

Although COVID-19 has brought difficulty to many businesses, the high rate of unemployment has left many to focus on what was previously their side-hustle or freelance work. A small percentage of job prospects has left us with gig work, using our marketable skills and furthering our educations.

While this is a difficult time to build a brand, it isn’t impossible. In lieu of attending meetings, speaking on panels and networking in the community, placing the focus instead on the company’s current messaging, graphics, website, public relations, social media and marketing efforts is essential. COVID has thrust the world into a work-from-home, online shopping, and food delivery reality. Building your brand during this time is not only the smartest move for your start-up or business – it is the only move that will keep you competitive in a post-COVID world. The following steps are what we at The Social Block do for ourselves to build our brand, as well as what we would always suggest to clients.

Take relationship building digital

We know that nothing can replace face-to-face interactions and networking, but in a digital world, it’s not enough to just do one. Looking out for media opportunities, offering discounted services to local non-profits to support your community, participating in roundtables, panel discussions and curating a well-managed social media presence are all essential ways to build your brand online.

Social media has been, and is continuing to be, a method of providing customer service and increasing brand loyalty. Although the recession may be limiting those buying or product or using your service, communicating with your target audience, asking for their success stories or feedback, and showing that you listen, care and are engaged, will keep your business top of mind and keep business flowing when the economy stabilizes.

Don’t stop marketing

Depending on your product or service, you can choose from email or mail campaigns, utilizing ad space in relevant publications, or targeting your audience directly through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn ads. It’s not enough to leave your growth to organic views, shares and customer/client reviews. Getting new traffic in the door and fresh eyes on your business will increase your brand awareness.

Even if COVID may cause a delay in conversions or results, you want to be one of the services or products on your target audience’s list to try after your area has reopened and the economy begins to repair itself.

Assess where your brand is at currently

It may be time to take a hard look at what branding you had going on before COVID, and determine if it is time to make a change. Is your website difficult to navigate wit outdated items? Is your social media active, and is it used to build relationships with potential clients or customers, or is it used almost as a “personal” account, full of successes and company outings? Are you participating in speaking engagements and interacting in you community? Are your graphics, presentations, business cards and logo truly representative of what you do?

Take a hard look at where each area stands, and be honest about what could change. At first glance, are you truly giving off the impression you want?

Times are tough, but it’s an opportunity to pause, reflect and rethink the way you do business.

Mina illustration for 360 Magazine

Mina Tocalini

About Mina Tocalini

Mina Tocalini is the child of Argentinian immigrants and was born in South Bay California, at the age of five she moved with her family to Arizona, where she remained until she graduated high school. Recently, she has been living between Pittsburgh, Pa and Los Angeles, California as she completes her Bachelor of Arts in Film and Visual Media (minoring in Animation) at Carnegie Mellon University. She is expected to graduate in May of 2021 and will be taking her classes remotely due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

This past summer Mina began working for 360 Magazine as a Digital Media intern, in which she creates illustrations and writes articles. Her career interests are mainly focused in the entertainment/marketing industry and specifically include working in: graphic design, illustration, animation, post-production, video editing and creative development.

As a fine artist, Mina goes by Pia, her middle name. She mostly creates expressionist portrait paintings and is often drawn to using a wide range of colors and shapes to define the features of the face. Mina loves the texture that develops through the use of various colors and believe it gives each portrait its own personality. Her favorite styles of art are psychedelic, fauvism and anything that veers away from reality.

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Talkwalker – Most Loved Brands

No Ordinary Love – From Sirius to Hyatt, New Report Draws Consistent Findings on Sentiment vs. Engagement in Capturing Brand Affection

Who do you love? Consumers clearly have their favorites when it comes to brands and international social media analytics firm Talkwalker has the data to prove the most loved brands on social media. But just because a brand is mentioned more often in social media, doesn’t mean that it will always trend higher in terms of how consumers feel about that brand.

Talkwalker used a quarter billion conversations around 781 brands in 28 different industries to create its Brand Love Story 2020 report, identifying the 50 most loved brands from across the world, through the power of social listening and highlighting just what these brands do to be loved. Talkwalker measured social media mentions that are specific symptoms of a brand that generates actual love from its social media fans. Analysts studied everything from consumer engagement and sentiment in both social media and the news, as well as the percentage of mentions that were categorized as related to “joy” and the percentage of mentions that contain love-related words. So brands were actually rewarded for a higher percentage of joyful mentions, and love-related keywords.

One of the key metrics the report studied was engagement – the number of posts mentioning those brands – and sentiment – how people feel about those mentions based on likes, comments and shares. Generally, as engagement goes higher, sentiment drops, as brands open themselves to a wider audience and more criticism. However, in compiling this data, Talkwalker found that loved brands broke this trend, with either exceptionally high engagement or sentiment or both.

“There’s a clear pattern across all these brands,” says Todd Grossman, CEO Americas for Talkwalker. “As engagement goes up – more people react to a brand – the more overall sentiment drops – the more those interactions are negative. There were 25 brands with over 100 million engagements – the biggest brands in the world. Not one has a net sentiment over 75%.”

This report compares engagement rates of brands and their competitors. If a brand posts a great deal, it will get a lot of engagement, but a competitor can get that same engagement through fewer posts. Engagement rate is the total engagement divided by total followers or total views. The higher the number, the better. Overall, for all brands, the average net sentiment is 61.5% and average engagement rate is 8.32.

“Virality is great – it helps brands get content to more people,” adds Grossman.  “But it also opens those brands up to a bigger risk, with an increased chance of negative comments or responses. Companies must monitor their viral content constantly, and respond to detractors quickly, to prevent unwanted backlash.”

Talkwalker studied brands in a number of industries, including airlines, automotive, broadcasters, eCommerce, fashion and beauty, finance, food, hospitality, household, insurance, investment, leisure, manufacturing and engineering, medical, mining and utilities,pharmaceutical, professional services, retail, software and technology, and telecoms.

In the travel industry, 27 airlines, hotels and cruise lines were considered and studied for the final list and  the seven who made the Top 50 Loved Brands overcame the challenge of high engagement, but low sentiment, whereas the others suffered in the rankings due to that measure.

“Across the travel industry, regardless of whether it’s airlines, hotels or cruises, social media can be a double-edged sword,” adds Grossman. “It’s easier to tweet a complaint publicly than register it to customer service over the phone or at the desk. Companies invariably try to take these conversations private, but consumers understand it’s in their best interest to keep things public. Other viewers can very easily relate, and are quick to judge these responses.”

For example, an Atlanta Marriott (40th on the U.S. list) where LSU players stayed before playing in a playoff game last year, ran out of beer 25 hours before kickoff – and on this thread generated 134 comments and more than 6,000 engagements along with another 225 on a Reddit thread that quoted this Tweet. While hosting the team is an honor for the brand, not meeting fans and guests needs is a failed moment.

Another example exists as Talkwalker studied 11 broadcasters and found a high engagement rate, but low sentiment, as evidenced by this Twitter thread. In the period studied Sirius had 47,000 social media mentions, of which 23 percent (1,100) were positive. In that same period they generated nearly 22,000 engagements of which 13,700 occurred on negative or neutral posts. 9,900 engagements came from the 1,100 positive mentions.

In the period studied Sirius had 47,000 social media mentions, of which 23 percent (1,100) were positive. In that same period they generated nearly 22,000 engagements of which 13,700 occurred on negative or neutral posts. 9,900 engagements came from the 1,100 positive mentions.

Moreover, In the period studied, across all mentions (news and social – totaling 5,300) the Sirius brand generated nearly 81,300 engagements. However, 78,200 of those engagements are occurring on posts that are classified as “not positive”, either neutral or negative!

“People love to engage with their favorite shows, sharing and liking content associated with their fanbase,” Grossman notes. “But sentiment is tough. A new show can promote positive sentiment, but a cancelation or disappointing ending to a series, can easily drag the sentiment of the brand down.”

About Talkwalker:

Talkwalker is a social listening and analytics company that empowers over 2,000 brands and agencies to optimize the impact of their communication efforts.

We provide companies with an easy-to-use platform to protect, measure, and promote their brands worldwide, across all communication channels. Talkwalker’s state-of-the-art social media analytics platform use AI-powered technology to monitor and analyze online conversations in real-time across social networks, news websites, blogs and forums in 187 languages.

Talkwalker has offices in New York, Luxembourg, San Francisco, Frankfurt, and Singapore. It is also the home of Talkwalker Alerts, a free alerting service used by over 500,000 communications and marketing professionals worldwide.

360 MAGAZINE, BUSINESS, ILLUSTRATIONS ,rita azar

7 Ways Businesses Can Improve Digital Marketing with Social Media

The digital world is full of tools that can boost your marketing results, such as social media. Here are ways to improve digital marketing with social media.

The internet is one of the most powerful marketing tools available to business owners. Social media, in particular, holds a notable amount of potential for brands looking to increase their marketing capabilities. 

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about how to improve digital marketing for your brand through social media.

1. It’s Cost-Effective

Since social media accounts are free to create and use, there’s no reason not to take advantage of their utility. Most other forms of digital marketing come at a cost, and they can quickly add up over time (especially if you’re subscribed to multiple different monthly services).

Since you’ll be in charge of your own social media account, you control how much money you spend— even if it’s nothing at all.

Depending on how well you know your audience and what type of product or service you offer, you may choose to run social media ads. Utilizing these correctly is still a highly cost-effective practice that you can use to grow your business. 

2. It Provides an Additional Avenue of Communication

In general, you’ll find that your audience is more likely to reach out to you if they have a higher number of ways to do so.

There’s nothing wrong with using phone or email as your primary method of communication with your audience. By allowing them to contact you directly on social media (even through direct messages), you can significantly increase your level of engagement with them.

Since social media is a far more personal platform than email, you can expect to receive messages that ask questions about your product or service, voice their opinion of your company itself, etc.

By acknowledging and responding to public comments, you’ll show the rest of your audience that you’re active on your platform and able to be easily interacted with. This will establish a more human element to your brand that will help people resonate with your company. 

3. It’s Active 24/7 

When you post something on social media, your audience has the opportunity to interact with it during all hours of the day and night. If you happen to have a business that functions internationally, this becomes even more important.

Additionally, people don’t always prioritize checking their email. However, the average person spends hours per week across every social media platform.

As your online following grows, you’ll reach a point where your audience is actively seeking out the posts that you make. So, posts they may have missed are able to be found on their own when they navigate to your page. 

Combining social media with a traditional form of marketing (such as using brand vehicles for your company) can exponentially increase your audience’s awareness of your company. 

4. Instant Access to Your Audience

As previously mentioned, it can take a bit to hear back from your audience if you were contacting them through email or other methods. Unfortunately, this can prove to be an issue if you happen to need a relatively quick response from them.

Social media gives you instant access to your audience as soon as you click ‘post,’ making it a great method to ask for feedback, make an announcement, etc. 

Since every minute counts when optimizing business productivity, social media should be high on your list of priorities when researching better ways to engage with your customers. 

5. Your Followers Will Share Your Content

One of the best attributes of social media when it comes to improving your company’s digital marketing practices is the chance that your audience will often share the content you post.

While there’s no guarantee that your shares will grow exponentially, even a handful of them can drastically increase the number of people that see your posts.

For instance, let’s assume you have 1,000 followers on Facebook for your brand. Since not everyone uses social media all the time, you average 200 to 300 views per post.

But, 10 people have decided to share your latest post, and five of those people have over 1,000 friends on Facebook. The total audience for your latest post has just grown exponentially by having someone else click a button.

In order to optimize your chance of having your content shared, it should be both accessible and engaging. Quick guides, reviews, etc. are great places to start. In the meantime, Hostinger is rated quite high if you’re ever in the mood to build your very own community.

6. You’ll Build a Community

Building a community won’t happen overnight, and it takes a notable amount of consistent effort on your part to do so. But, having a strong social following can exponentially increase the success of your brand.

One of the best ways to go about this is to consistently interact with your followers and show your appreciation for their engagement. Holding a giveaway that only your social media followers have access to, for example, is a great way for you to cultivate your brand’s community. 

7. Increased SEO Value

It’s important to note that social media won’t directly boost your company’s website SEO. But, it can have a significant indirect impact on this metric.

You’re able to leverage your social following to link to specific pages on your company site. As more and more traffic reaches those pages, your Google ranking will also begin to increase.

As long as you link to content that your followers are sure to be interested in, you’re unlikely to encounter any issues. 

Understanding How to Improve Digital Marketing With Social Media Can Seem Difficult

But it doesn’t have to be.

With the above information about using social media to improve digital marketing in mind, you’ll be well on your way to taking full advantage of this strategy.

Want to learn more business tips that can help you out in the future? Be sure to check out the rest of our blog.

Tik Tok Advertising

As advertisers look for openings to begin their normal ad routine, many are looking to attract new audiences to up profits for the remainder of the year. The rush to apps like Tik Tok have many advertisers wondering if advertising on the platform will garner results companies can benefit from.

Brands can utilize Tik Tok to advertise to different types of markets, in which not only directly has a positive affect on brands, as well as the app itself.

Time, Context, and Location are key to a successful marketing
campaign. Given the global pandemic, and the current state of the
country, each state and city is experiencing different things at different times. It is critical to take each of these different experiences into consideration while moving forward.

Personalization: Personalization is now an essential, customers increasingly expect ads to be personalized. Not in a creepy way, but in a way that fits with the way they see the world right now. Brands win audiences by creating connections based on empathy and relevance. 70% of companies that use advanced personalization have already earned 200% ROI or more from it.

Ad consciousness: The old way of advertising will not work anymore, brands need to keep in mind the new reality when advertising to groups. Ads that worked pre-pandemic won’t work now. In addition, how you do and don’t address your audience will determine the last connection you make.

coffee, mug, plate, cocoa, green, white, brown, 360 Magazine, illustration

How to Build Your Brand from Your Bedroom

Under the current, (very) uncertain financial conditions, the prospect of starting a business might not be the most appealing. With some experts predicting an economic downturn worse than anything we’ve seen since the Great Depression during the 1930s, cutting back on all non-essentials and saving as much money as possible seems the obvious & sensible strategy.

However, for every recession, some businesses thrive and several entrepreneurial possibilities will typically develop. To build a recession-proof business and to start a business during the current financial crisis, minimizing overheads is a great place to start.

Work from Home

Many of us have now experience the ‘forced-experiment’ of working from home and have hopefully, made adjustments so that it is a viable option in the future. Whilst during the pandemic your clients may forgive you for having a barking dog or a crying baby in the background, this will most likely be deemed highly unprofessional again in the near future.

By using a telephone answering service from the likes of Moneypenny and a virtual office address from the likes of Apso you can portray your business in a highly professional light. Combined with a professional website, having a ‘bricks and mortar’ office address and a landline telephone number can make a business run from your bedroom, appear to be a highly reputable establishment.

In addition, having a professional receptionist who knows your business down to the important details and provides a great customer service can make your business seem ‘bigger’ than it is. 

Another big advantage of using a virtual receptionist app or service is that you can often opt for a 24/7 or out of hours service. This can allow you to capture calls around the clock, meaning that you’ll never miss a sales-lead again.

Use Accountancy Apps

Please note that in some countries, you can get a fine for filling in a tax return and other legal forms incorrectly. If this is the case, it may be wise to invest in a local accountant or hire a tax return specialist from a website such as Upwork.

Whether or not you use an accountant, using an accounting or finance app can still save you lots of time and potentially money. By using an app, for example, you can cut down substantially on admin time that may have previously required an additional member of staff to hire.

The fact that you can access your financial data on your mobile phone, regardless of your location, makes it a lot easier to manage your operations & spending. With the right app; you will also be able to archive receipts and create invoices on the go – giving you fewer things to remember to do when you get back home or back to the office!

Quickbooks and Freshbooks are the leading industry apps at present. To quickly run through what you could expect to do with Quickbooks:

– Create & send highly professional invoices

– Scan receipts & attach them to expenses forms

– Instantly access auto-generated reports such as profit & loss, balance and cash flow

– Run a Payroll

– Accept Online Payments

– Simplify Tax returns

Being able to simplify tax returns is a big benefit. This can save you a lot of money, as a freelance accountant will have to spend less time putting together your forms, meaning that they can charge significantly less.

Develop Brand Ambassadors

By brand ambassadors, we don’t mean the ones that you might find on social media with tens of thousands of followers – we mean utilising your customers & clients. By going above and beyond, providing a great value service and/or product and offering referral promotions, you can often turn existing clients and customers into lead-generating assets. Many businesses make the mistake of chasing new clients and not looking after their current clientele. However, by making your current clients feel special and highly valued, you can often gain many clients passively, by word of mouth.

One way to find brand ambassadors is to do a search online and find people who’ve already shown some authentic love or admiration for your brand. Search using your company name, relevant hashtags or just look for posts that you’ve been tagged in. You can also use software for this if necessary – for example, Brand24 or SocialToaster. Finally, if you have a signup process online, you can ask people if they would be willing to share products with their network and friends. This can also work if you have a newsletter or ask for feedback at any point.

Social Media Advertising

Before you commit to spending any money on advertising, make sure you research for several hours first. People waste millions of dollars each year by putting adverts live without delving into the strategies that work and don’t work for each industry and niche. Hiring an agency can also be very expensive and for something that is not highly technical or difficult to learn. Commit to 2 or 3 hours of research – which pretty much involves watching videos on Youtube at x1.5 speed!

If you do choose to do paid advertising on Facebook, focus on getting the right audience, be as specific as possible and create a tailored set of adverts. Remember that people are not actively searching for products or services, they are just scrolling through their timeline – so you’ll usually need to ‘warm them up’ with a free eBook or offer. If budget allows, test several formats of advert too, make video one of them.

The worst thing you can do with Google, Facebook or any other advertising, is jump in and put campaigns live without learning the tips and tricks that a very important when it comes to making a profit. Done correctly, however, social media advertising can be highly cost-effective.

Here is a great tutorial about Facebook advertising to get started with.

Pace University, Randi Priluck P.h.D. , professor, social media, marketing

Twitter Bans Free Speech?

Twitter has banned all political ads on its platform becoming a hero for a day. It was a surprising move given the reluctance of tech companies to get involved in the content posted on their sites. Like most such actions, the actual impact will hardly be noticeable. Since Twitter is the only site to ban political ads, people will still be exposed to paid content from candidates on other larger networks. According to ComScore, Facebook and Google have significantly more unique users in the US than Twitter, so people will still be exposed to online political advertising. Second, Twitter makes news when influential people tweet. The more outrageous the statement, the more likely the information will spread, not only on Twitter, but in traditional news outlets as well. Pairing that with the fact that people tend to trust paid less than organic content, the tweets will still hit their targets who will be even more likely to believe what they read.

So, is it a public good that Twitter is banning political ads or not? It’s certainly a relatively easy thing for Twitter to do. It is much more difficult to monitor the ads and determine their veracity. This process would require flagging suspicious content and hiring people to evaluate the messages. The problem is that banning all political ads means that candidates who do not have strong Twitter followings will be less able to reach audiences with their messages, thus giving even more power to the powerful.

Artificial intelligence techniques are improving and tech firms may have more tools in the future to effectively monitor. In 2018 Instagram announced that they are using a machine learning platform called DeepText to detect bullying language. This kind of technology could be applied to political ads to flag them for internal review. However, the platforms may be reluctant to adopt the monitoring technologies because of the potential for increased scrutiny of their businesses by political and governmental entities.

Professor Randi Priluck P.h.D.
Priluck is Professor of Marketing and Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies at Pace University. She also serves as Director of the Masters in Social Media & Mobile Marketing program in the Lubin School of Business, Pace University.