4 things Kim Kardashian can teach us about a solid social media strategy

Kim Kardashian – love her or hate her, you can’t deny that she’s created a massive empire and cult following. Having recently won the Council of Fashion Designers of America influencer award, Kim is truly one of the biggest influencers of our time. With 113 million Instagram followers (that’s the sixth most followed in the world) and 60.2 million followers on Twitter (that’s more than Donald Trump), she is truly the Queen of social media. What really catapulted Kim into fame? How does she maintain such a large following and influence despite an equally notorious reputation, and what can brands learn from her?

Know your audience

Kim brands herself around glam, beauty and luxury. In fact, all of her ventures now are centered around these themes. This is what her audience knows her for and it’s what they expect her to share with them and thus creates personalised content for them. Diverting from this may cause a scattered brand identity that people are unable to understand or follow and result in lower followership. This means keeping in mind integrated marketing communications – a single brand image across all platforms.

Also, always listen! People like to promote products, but Kim thinks it’s equally (if not more) important to listen as well. To engage with your audience makes them feel like you’ve taken their thoughts into consideration. For all you know, your audience just might be your inspiration for the next big campaign!

Capitalise on opportunities

Opportunities don’t always come in pretty packages. Kim once supported a morning sickness prevention brand once and got a lot of flak (even from the Food and Drug Administration!) for not posting the drug’s side effects. However, Kim managed to turn the situation around by taking ownership for her actions. This moment garnered a lot of publicity (negative or not) that made people more interested in Kim’s life.

It’s all about taking the opportunities that have the potential to help you build brand awareness. Kim’s #breaktheinternet moment with Paper magazine was unpaid but was something that created buzz about one of her most famous assets – her butt. If that’s not capitalising on opportunities, I don’t know what is!

Stay authentic

This is a sure way to prevent a PR disaster. When you’re that well known around the world, people will be watching your every step. Post something that’s not true to you and people will immediately catch wind of it. That’s why it’s important for you to endorse items and posts that are true to your brand identity to prevent backlash. Kim always promotes products that she herself loves and uses so that she knows she’s promoting a good product to her audience.

For example, the first product Kim launched from her beauty line was a contour kit. This was done with the vision that she wants to sell products she believes in and uses often. This works hand in hand with knowing her audience. Kim wanted to be able to sell her famous contour look to her audience, who look to her for beauty inspiration.

Use every platform

Different platforms have different strengths and Kim capitalises on that to maximise the use of different social media outlets. According to Kim, each platform has a purpose to serve.

Facebook is good for click-throughs, snapchat showcases more of your private side, Instagram is good for showing the actual product and twitter is good for having a conversation with people. Based on what you are trying to accomplish with your brand, it’s important to keep this in mind while curating social media posts and do what will work best with your audience and keep them engaged.

Still not sure how to create content for your brand? Check out some tips here on how to create digital marketing gold.

Want to break the Internet like Kim? Drop us a message at hello@mutant.com.sg

7 Typography tips to ace your designs

Everyone’s had an idea for a cool design at some point. But turning your idea into reality is an effort. When it comes to creating graphics, it’s a different game. The application of graphic design is versatile and allows you to play around with shapes, images, positioning and typography. It’s a game you can get lost in.

The art of arranging type, aka typography, is not only a crucial part of any design, but also key to getting people interested in your design (and what you have to offer). A bad typography layout affects the readability, causing people to lose interest after reading just a first few lines. With millennials giving you less than 5 seconds to catch their attention, your typography needs to be spot on.

(Source: Harper’s Bazaar Brazil)

Failing to realise your idea visually, doesn’t always mean your idea was no good. Don’t question your ideas, but work on improving your designs. Here are some of the things to take note of when working on your next design project:

1) Choosing the right font (personality)

Are you aware that fonts have distinct moods and personalities? Don’t disregard Arial and Helvetica straight away. Always look at what you want to achieve before picking the font. Choosing the wrong font can convey different feelings and might even screw up your entire design.

For example, working on the design and layout for a fashion magazine, you most likely want to suggest modern, elegant and sophisticated tones – visually. You want to stay away from using Comic Sans or Papyrus fonts for the magazine, as it makes the entire design look unprofessional. The font you select needs to suit the personality of the brand.


(Source: AdWeek)

Never pick fonts just because you are awe of the particular typeface, in fact, you should choose the typefaces that suit your desired outcome.

“With millennials giving you less than 5 seconds to catch their attention, your typography needs to be spot on.”

2) No more than 3!

Never be generous with the use of fonts. Try to stick with one or two fonts for your design. Too many fonts might over-complicate the entire design – distracting the reader from what’s really important.

Remember websites in the 90s?

If you really want to use two to three different fonts in a design layout, avoid using fonts that look similar to each other (e.g. Bodoni and Didot). Visually similar fonts can be quite problematic, as they make your design look too indistinctive. Make it a family affair and use fonts from the same family, as it will give your design a more cohesive look. You might think that only one font looks boring, but ‘less is more’.

Let’s not forget, you can always play with the weights, styles and the width of the font. So, forget about the 90s and don’t use more than three fonts for one and the same design.

3) Do not stretch or squeeze! 

Stretching and squeezing a font is definitely a big no in the world of design. Many people are tempted and love to stretch and squeeze a font just to make it fit a certain space. Stretching and squeezing a font does not only look odd, it also makes your design, brand and you look unprofessional. Instead, try to increase the size of the font to make it fit.

4) Don’t forget to kern it


Kerning refers to adjusting the spacing between letters – and is different from adding gaps by hitting space on your keyboard (don’t even think about it).

(Source: AdWeek)

This is extremely important as it can make your design look a whole lot different. A good and bad design can be easily recognised and differentiated by just looking at the kerning. Hence, always remember to check the kerning before sending your final design to the client or the printer.

Nice smile, but that’s how you shouldn’t kern your design. (Source: Pixie Simms)

Mastering the art of kerning is especially important when it comes to creating your own font from scratch. Check out typemethod and practice your kerning skills until you get the hang of how it works.

5) Wipe out all the widows and orphans

If you don’t know what that means, you definitely need to pay attention now. Not many people will notice and identify the typographical widows and orphans. But if you want to tighten up your graphic designs you better start taking notice.

In the design world, a widow is a word that is left dangling at the end or the bottom of a paragraph, separated from the rest of the paragraph. While an orphan is a short paragraph that appears at the beginning of a column or page. One of the easiest ways to eliminate them is to rewrite or change the line ending. Another alternative is to manually edit the text or bring the text down to the next line.

6) The ‘ideal’ line width

Easily overlooked, a design’s line width is of importance too, playing a crucial role in the readability of the text. Wide columns usually won’t do your design any good, as they break the flow of the reader’s eyes when they jump from one line to the next. On the other hand, a narrow column might annoy your reader. Finding the balance is key to making it easy for the reader’s eyes to get through the article or text. Remember – the reader should be fully taken in by the content and not be distracted by the layout.

Never try to fit in all the words onto one line, as it might screw up the readability of your article. The perfect solution to a balanced line width is to keep it short. About 8 to 10 words or 50 to 60 characters per line is ideal.

7) Create a visual hierarchy

Think of what you want your viewers to look at first – only then you can embark on a design project. Everyone wants to create a design that looks good and captures people’s attention at a glance – so, make sure you don’t distract them with unnecessary stuff. Hierarchy plays an important role in design. It creates a flow, directs your eyes and allows your brain to process it easily. Hierarchy makes it easier for the viewer to distinguish what content comes first.

(Source: Pinterest)

You can learn how to establish a visual hierarchy by reading newspapers and magazines. Alternatively, you can try to play with the size, weight and spacing to achieve a visual hierarchy in your design. The more you practice, the more you will train your eyes.

Want sharp designs? Need to visualise an idea? Drop a message to hello@mutant.com.sg 

Turn user-generated content into Digital Marketing gold

Is your social media strategy starting to feel a bit stale? Do you feel like you are running out of content to post? More importantly, are you having difficulty connecting with your audience? User-generated content (UGC) is any type of content that is created for a brand by its fans – ranging from online reviews to customer photos on Instagram. While the brand gets free content and promotion, users are rewarded with discounts or similar offerings. Consumers trust peer recommendations more than any other type of advertising, so your audience is more likely to trust your brand if the content is user-generated. Simply put – it’s marketing gold!

But how do you incorporate it into your existing strategy? Carrying out a successful UGC campaign requires a thorough understanding of your audience and a well thought-out strategy. Stumped on ideas? Here are a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

Create a buzz

If you want people to be speaking about your brand, you need to give them a good reason! From Coca Cola’s ‘Share a Coke’ campaign where they swapped their logo for random names, to Starbucks’ festive ‘Red Cup Contest’ campaign, there’s a number of different ways you can create a buzz for your brand with products. One of the more recent UGC campaigns that got everyone talking was #castmemarc

Popular fashion designer Marc Jacobs took to social media, announcing that he’s casting models for his next advertising campaign from Twitter and Instagram submissions. The campaign generated over 15,000 submissions in just 24 hours from fashionistas around the world! Needless to say, this led to a trend of ‘selfie-casting’ with companies using social media to discover the next face for their campaigns.

UGC idea for your brand: Create a campaign completely bespoke to your brand that has not been done before, think outside the box!

Suggested read: Writing for Social: Why one size just doesn’t fit all

Leverage the power of the #

A hashtags is the most popular way of initiating UGC. Used effectively, it can spread like wildfire. A brand that’s slaying the UGC hashtag game is the renowned online retailer ASOS. Creating a curated page on their website for #AsSeenOnMe, customer could submit their images via Instagram or upload them directly.

While that already created a lot of buzz, ASOS went a step further making every shared image shoppable, linking it to the product item featured in the image. 

UGC idea for your brand: Add customer photos to product pages

Offer cool rewards

You don’t have to give out discount codes or pay anyone? It can be as simple as sharing the content of users. When it comes to UGC, the smallest gesture of appreciation of a ‘like’ or a ‘share’ can go a long way. In 2015, National Geographic launched their ‘Wanderlust Contest’ campaign, encouraging users to post photos with the #WanderlustContest hashtag, for the chance to win a National Geographic photo expedition to Yosemite National Park.

The idea took flight – the campaign photos were featured on their website with their hashtag still generating over 60,000 posts. Campaigns of this nature underline the power of the hashtag, in conjunction with a creative, shareable reward.

UGC idea for your brand: Offer rewards to customers who write reviews

Make its easy for users to generate content

Having a UGC strategy is a great idea, until it becomes complex. Keep your platforms easy to coordinate, straightforward and fuss-free. This way you won’t be putting off your users from engaging. Take GoPro as an example, the GoPro product is literally a content creation machine, coming from the better-known phrase it’s a ‘video camera’. Yes, this is a given advantage, but, as much as GoPro’s product lends itself to UGC, you still need to make it happen. GoPro recognised this and made it happen, introducing their DIY product to the world allowing us to share our experiences, like those in the below GoPro user-generated clip:

Similarly, creating tools and platforms to enable your customers to share content without the fancy software makes a world of difference to encouraging UGC for your brand. Empower users to capture, create, share and enjoy their own work with others – to your brand’s benefit.

UGC idea for your brand: Introduce a platform that is easy to use with simple guidelines to follow for your users

Get in touch with us at hello@mutant.com.sg to see how we can help you create your own user-generated content.

 

 

 

Gen Z: Marketing to digital natives

While everyone is focused on getting the attention of millennials, the next generation (Z) is already having an impact on the media and PR industry. But who is this Generation Z and what sets them apart? Their behaviour online and the way they consume content will be a crucial indicator for what direction the PR and media world is moving towards. Here is how they are already changing the game.

Internet & social media generation

Generation Z could easily be renamed the internet & social media generation, as they not only grow up with the internet as their primary form of communication, but they are also the first generation to use social media and the internet from a very early age onwards. In 2015, 77% of 12–17- year-olds owned a mobile phone, which is reflected in the estimated 150,000 educational apps, 10% of Apple’s App Store, aimed at them. Generation Z isn’t just media-savvy, but ‘being online’ is a given for the generation of ‘digital natives’. This means that PR folks and marketers don’t just need to stay up-to-date with the latest digital and social media trends, they need to be ahead of the curve.

No more Facebook?

Talking to people who were born at the turn of the century, you will be surprised that, although they have a Facebook account, their chosen social media channels are in fact Instagram and Snapchat. While the Facebook feed still works to amplify articles and news from websites and brands, the content form must adapt to new social media platforms. To be sure, brands and media platforms are already experimenting with Snapchat and Instagram. Airbnb, for example, used an inspirational travel video series for their Instagram Stories to create awareness and buzz for the launch of Experiences on Airbnb.

 

However, given that both platforms display content only for a limited amount of time, PR and media must adapt to craft and develop impactful content to capture the attention of these younglings.

Skipping Ads

Inundated with content, this generation has done particularly well to filter out ads and sponsored content. Simply put, they won’t react to an ad, unless it benefits them and adds value to their lives. Marketers and PR folks need to be smarter with Generation Z, but shouldn’t try to outsmart them. Advertising and sponsored posts need to camouflage themselves into something that this generation wants to see.

Struggling traditional media

This lot has little regard for traditional media and are more likely to be consuming content on social media, blogs and YouTube. Showcasing your content natively on social media and working with trusted influencers can help to make inroads with Gen Z.

Long term investment

Despite skipping ads and filtering content that doesn’t interest them, Generation Z tends to be more loyal than the generation that came before them. As Gen Z consumers stay loyal to the brands they shop at and are more likely to stick with them throughout their lives, it’s still worth making the investment as a brand.

Although the content they consume tends to be very short-lived, the investment of brands and PR agencies will be long-term. This is good news for everyone, as customer acquisition is becoming more important and might have longevity – despite constantly changing consumer behaviours.

 

Like what you’ve read? Drop a note at hello@mutant.com.sg to talk about how to make your brand ready for the next generation. 

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Small fish, big pond. When to outsource your marketing

Whilst almost everyone can grasp the basics of marketing, what does it take to really shine?

The overarching goal for most businesses is to expand and grow, though when it comes to marketing, too often there is a shortage of time and resources to figure out the most effective digital, transactional, and diverse strategies. Sure, you can try do it all yourself but that could lead to poor quality, potentially harming your business. And what a waste of your productive time and money that would be!

Hiring an agency to give you a hand is no longer exclusive to bigger shops, in fact, it is a lot more common than you think for small to medium size businesses to call in some experts to give them the boost they are looking for.

First and foremost, you get a VIP pass to expert industry knowledge. The benefits are immediate. A great marketing agency is not only up to scratch with marketing technologies and how to make them work for you, they also have the experience of doing it for others. This could give you the edge you need and saves you scrambling to play catch-up with competitors.

Secondly, putting your marketing in the hands of specialists, means your marketing won’t suffer due to staffing issues. Consistency is key when it comes to successful marketing, especially online – if not, Google will notice flows in your content production. Nowadays, all it takes is for your in-house marketer to go on holiday or have a sick day to affect the smooth running of your output. Outsourcing simply keeps the consistency despite what may be happening in the office. All the while, you get to focus on what your business does best. Working with the right agency not only means being up to date with latest technologies, it also helps to know where your target audience is and what systems are best suited to tap into them. All you need to do is sit back and watch your market grow with the trust that this is being done for you.

Outside knowledge from working with an agency can bring you and your business numerous benefits that you may not have considered; fresh eyes, new ideas, industry expertise and technology know-how. Skype, for example, used a team of developers in Estonia to build out their business when they first got started in 2003, leading to a buy out with Microsoft in 2011 for $8.3 billion USD. Slack is another company that has seen great success outsourcing design in its early days.

Last, but certainly not least, brand monitoring. Outsourcing your marketing function shouldn’t be a one-trick pony. A dedicated and proactive agency should be continually optimising your marketing efforts. The world is a competitive place for brands big and small, and it is crucial to lower your risk of market stagnation. Brands need to be up to speed, consistent, as well as creative with their ideas. Having a great marketing campaign but not the strategy and monitoring in place is a slippery slope for brands. However, an agency will constantly try new things to keep your business on trend to deliver agreed-upon goals.

Sound good? But where do you start. Choosing the right agency for your business can be mind boggling and full of people trying to sell you something without your objectives in mind. Find an agency that understands your brand and is willing to take the time to work out the best strategy for your business.

If you want to discuss your business potential, big or small, drop us a message at hello@mutant.com.sg

 

Fall in love with data to shape your content marketing strategy

The first thing that often comes to mind when someone mentions content, is creativity. That’s almost true – great content is indeed dependent on creativity, but it’s also reliant on data. Data helps guide content towards the next best direction. After all, brands aren’t just shelling out money for nothing – they want to see value and ROI.

Data should never be an afterthought. It should be looked upon as an integral part that can help a business angle its content to accurately reach their audience and drive results. 

So if you’re having trouble filling up your content calendar, look to your data set first. It’ll give you access to the latest trends and insights  – and as well a whole new mindset on how to approach your content marketing strategy.

Here’s where to start:

Step 1: Do your research

Kick off with extensive research on the external data that’s available to you out there. Start with these:

1. BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is great if you’re looking to see which specific keywords/topics are trending. You’ll also be able to see the number of social shares and engagements a particular topic has received. You’ll be in luck if the topic you’re writing about is already trending.

2. Google Trends

Always wondered what people are searching for on Google? Here you’ll find market-specific trending searches and search interest in various topics/keywords.

3. Twitter

Twitter makes it really easy for you to look at what is currently trending – just look to the left on your homepage and you’ll see the number of tweets each trending hash-tag has received. You’ll also be able to view market specific stats relevant to your preferred location.


4. Instagram

Instagram doesn’t quite have the same function as Twitter, but if you tap on the ‘Explore’ tab in your account, you can see what’s popular. Keep in mind that this is tailored according to your behaviour on Instagram, so the results won’t be an accurate reflection of what is truly trending.

Another feature of Instagram is hash-tags. Hash-tags with the most number of posts attributed to them signify popularity. Movements or trends that start on Instagram will usually use a unique hash-tag to group all related posts together as well. For example, take a look at Jamie Oliver’s #MeatlessMondays. Since this began, hordes of other food bloggers and enthusiasts have jumped on the bandwagon to produce related content.

If you’re unsure what hash-tags to use? Check out this link. However, it’s always important to keep your hashtags relevant to your content. For example, don’t hash-tag #dog if your photo is about baking.

5. Facebook

If you’re on Facebook’s mobile application, you’ll be able to see what’s currently trending through a quick tap on the search bar. This mostly changes everyday so if you see recurring topics that have remained on this page, you’ll definitely want to try and angle your content around that.

 

Step 2: Look deeper into your existing content


Recommended reading
: When was your last content audit?

Now that you know what topics people are talking about, you should now take a look at the other side of the coin. An internal content audit will give a deeper insight into how well your current content is performing. This is where you’ll find out what your audience likes, and what they aren’t really receptive to.

For starters you can take a look at your website analytics and social traffic.
Website analytics

Google analytics is a nifty tool for any content marketer out there. Simply set up your  account and copy the unique code on your site (if you aren’t sure how to do this ask your web developer). This tool will offer insights on your web traffic and referrals – you’ll also be able to identify your most popular content pieces in terms of views, time spent and bounce rate.

Social traffic (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter)

1. Twitter Analytics – this can be found on the top right portion of your account.

Here you’ll find tons of useful data, including Tweet impressions, profile visits, mentions and follower growth. You’ll also be able to export these analytics into a useful Excel sheet so you can match these numbers together with other data that you’re analysing.

2. Instagram

If you’ve linked up your Facebook page with your Instagram account to get a business profile, you’ll get access to useful data including number of impressions, reach and engagement for each Instagram post. Simply go to each photo and tap on ‘View Insights’.

3. Facebook

Facebook has a really intuitive way of presenting data. Simply go to your Facebook business page and click on ‘Insights’. This tab will tell you everything you need to know from the thousands of people you’ve reached to the number of people that have liked/un-liked your page in the past month.

For starters, click on ‘Export Data’ and exporting ‘Post Data’. This will show you key information on individual post, such as reach and engagement. But of course, feel free to play around with your Page insights – there is a lot there to explore.

 

Step 3: Set your KPIs

Now that you’ve extracted your internal and external data, the next step is to set your KPIs. With all of your previous research in mind, you should now have a clearer idea of what a good result looks like, and what doesn’t. This would then set you up to decide on achievable and realistic KPIs. Here’s some ideas for realistic goals you can set:

Web traffic

In Google Analytics, you’ll want to set your goals based on your past sessions, new users and page views. If you’re slightly more advanced, you can break the data down to the different channels where your traffic comes from. For example, finding out where the majority of your web traffic comes from, i.e.Google, Facebook, Twitter, Newsletter etc.

Engagement

One of the biggest issues that content marketers face is driving engagement from their audience. Because you’ve already done your content audit, you’ll now know what numbers signify a good engagement rate.

On social, you could set goals based on reach, impressions, engagement, link clicks, comments and shares. On your website, you may want to work on improving lead generation from newsletter sign-ups or free source downloads through your content.

Getting started on a content marketing strategy can seem daunting because there are so many factors to consider. But take it one step at a time and it’ll no doubt pay off.

And finally, in the wise words of David Welch, Former Adobe VP of Marketing Insights & Operations, ‘Creative thrills, but data pays bills’.

 

If you need help in shaping and executing your content marketing strategy, drop us a note at hello@mutant.com.sg.

 

Writing for social: Why one size just doesn’t fit all

It’s extremely easy for brands to build up a library of original content. The real challenge at hand is adapting that content to suit social media. In the age of short attention spans, brands need to keep up and tailor their content to suit each platform’s features or face being seen as irrelevant.

For brands, having a social media presence does not simply mean dumping the same content and format on every single social media channel possible. Doing it for the sake of it is ineffective and a waste of time and resources.

As intimidating as social media seems, brands need to craft content that fits. Results will follow when the outcome reflects consistent brand messaging and meaningful engagement with the brand’s audience.

  • When in doubt, repurpose

When posting articles on social media, always consider the fact that sometimes, less may be more. Because people are getting increasingly visual with their social media habits, brands can meet them halfway and start repurposing content instead.

Even if you’ve got a concise listicle, think about how that can be translated visually. Take a look and see what other brands have done:

HipVan remodels their blog posts into lean 5-6 images that provide a snapshot of the article’s best points. The 500×500 pixel image size gives people a full look at those images without needing them to take any extra action. On the overall, the simplicity and easy access of this format will no doubt increase the shareability on Facebook and other platforms.

Instead of posting a product link, Etch & Bolts made a visually appealing gif that summed up their new collection.
furniture-customisation

 

  • Size matters

Use people’s short attention spans to your advantage. Because people tend to swipe past brands very easily, it is your job to make sure you grab their attention even BEFORE they have a chance to look at the next post – this means you have about two seconds!

Get familiar with universal image sizes that work well on any platform and device. If you’re posting a photo on Twitter, make sure the size is optimised for all devices. What looks nice on desktops might look totally butchered on mobile phones.

Take a lesson from Instagram’s success – Square images/videos tend to do better on mobile displays because it takes up more space on the screen versus a landscape-oriented visual.

  • But…keep it short and sweet

If people are faced with a 300-word long caption on Facebook, chances are their thumbs have already swiped onto the next post. Keep your messages short and straight to the point. If anyone wanted to read that caption, they’d read a book.

Check out @sg_now’s example. The square image is universally friendly on all devices and the caption is snappy but let’s you in on sufficient detail.


TIP: Don’t see Twitter’s character count as a limitation, but as inspiration instead.

  • Sometimes, less may not be more

Though I’ve been preaching the ‘short and sweet’ message, there are exceptions. Take a look at Nicholas Kristof, a New York Times columnist’s Facebook post:

Example of quality social media content

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You’ll see that the engagement on his post is insane – 13,637 likes and 1,816 shares! Notice his caption wasn’t exactly the most concise yet he still managed to rake in the numbers.

Bottomline? This example shows that there still is a place for in-depth content on Facebook but you need to be knee-deep in your analytics to see if that’s the best way of content delivery.

Suggested read: 5 steps to measure social media success

  • Think long term

Producing viral content isn’t always the solution. Brands need to realise that not everything will go viral. Furthermore, creating content for the sake of achieving the almighty viral status ties up resources and isn’t sustainable in the long run.

Instead of spending time trying to make content go viral, focus on sustainable ways to grow and engage your audience. Brands cannot be built on viral videos but on strategies that focus on long term and sustainable growth.

Don’t see social media as another platform for you to dump all your branded content on. Take the time and see how your content can fit on a particular platform – each one’s different and will help you fulfill different objectives.

Get in touch with us at hello@mutant.com.sg to see how we can help you create compelling content for your social media platforms.

 

Is your brand Insta-worthy?

“What’s your Instagram account?” is probably one of the most frequently asked questions by everyone, everywhere. While Instagram used to be known as a mere trendy “millennial” hangout platform, it has evolved into an incredible social networking and advertising tool for businesses to utilise. In fact, it is the fastest growing social media site worldwide with over 500 million active users, 300 million of which use it at least once a day.

We all know that Instagram offers visual content, but what exactly makes it so successful, engaging, and popular? Here are some compelling reasons why your business should hop onto the Insta-bandwagon:

1) A picture tells a thousand words

Sure, you can always slap on a paragraph of text for your readers to digest, but having your consumers recognise your brand personality through jaw-dropping images effectively takes engagement to a whole new level. Coca-Cola sure knows a thing or two about Instagram – they successfully demonstrate the fun, unique, and vibrant brand through great imagery.

Instagram-cocacola

Source: @cocacola on Intagram

2) We live in a mobile world

Every business is looking for creative ways to produce thumb-stopping content. Luckily, Instagram is one of the very few apps where the interface itself is designed to be optimised on mobile. As such, visual content is the main focus simply because it’s easy to digest. Swiping through Instagram has never been easier and successful businesses can capitalise on this opportunity to directly reach key audiences.

3) In-app opportunities are endless

Instagram provides a whole range of activities which allow you to not only reach out to your audience, but also let them interact directly with you. For instance, one of the most effective Instagram uses is to host giveaways or contests. Lancome launched the #bareselfie campaign to promote its DreamTone serum and the results were miraculous – generating more than 500 fan Instagram photos, 50% of the serum’s sales, and a 4% conversion rate on Lancome’s site. Initiatives such as contests help to increase visibility, and gives your audience a chance to react to and participate in your campaigns.

Instagram-Lancome-competition

Source: @lancomeusa on Instagram

4) Ads are beautiful too

Let’s face it, everything on Instagram is breath-taking, even sponsored ads. Instagram utilises native advertising strategically, where ads are curated to blend in together with the platform’s original posts. People usually avoid ads the second they see one, but on Instagram you probably won’t mind taking a short glance. Ads, such are the examples below, are also paired with an effective call-to-action, helping to further drive engagement and increase website site traffic.

                                                      Instagram 4        Instagram 2

Sources: @magnum and @beautifullovewedding on Instagram

It’s time to strip away the stereotype that Instagram is only for attention-seeking teenage users.

This increasingly popular platform can do amazing things for your brand’s presence, visibility, and overall performance. If your brand is not already on Instagram, it’s time to jump onboard.

Follow our Instagram page @mutantcomms and drop us a note at hello@mutant.com.sg to see how we can help build your social media presence through great content.

 

Have you been using Facebook the right way?

With 1.65 billion monthly active users, it won’t come as a surprise that Facebook is the most-used social media site across all age groups. I also bet this won’t be the first time you’re reading an article on utilising Facebook to increase brand awareness through social advertising.

First of all, ask yourself why you even set up your Facebook page in the first place and why it is helping you achieve. Your followers are fed with a continuous stream of content as they scroll through their News Feed so how can you make sure that they stop to look at yours?

1. Share timely content

Pokémon Go is the hot topic of the town this week. And it’s likely to stay this way if it continues to cause more trouble than it already has. Multinational fashion retailer Topshop was one of the many brands to jump on the bandwagon. You should always be on the lookout for opportunities to drive traffic to your site by creating and sharing trending content.

timely-content-Facebook

 

2. Join conversations

Engagement, engagement, engagement. Facebook is one of the best platforms for you to hold two-way conversations with your audience. Stay in the loop and know listen to what your followers are saying. Make your brand more ‘human’ by replying to comments when you see them. There’s nothing fans like more than a personal message directed solely to them. Skyscanner is a great example as they are always very consistent with their replies to followers on Facebook and use a very personable tone that in-turn helps create loyal fans.

 

join conversations

 

3. Point to your own content

To help spark curiosity try referencing a point of interest from your article or blog. You have a very short three-second window before users decide whether your content is worth reading so opt for something catchy. Take a look at this example from Buro 24/7 when they gave their followers a sneak-peek into an interesting statistic about Singaporean women.

 

4. Use emojis

Be creative! Text alone may be boring and limits expressions. Of course, you shouldn’t fill your entire sentence with emojis because a) we get your point, and b) it’s annoying.  Instead mix it up a little.  Make sure that your emojis are relevant, don’t put them there just for the sake of adding cute little images to your captions as it doesn’t work. Take this example from Hostelworld’s Facebook page where they have a healthy balance of text and emojis that are both fun and relevant.

use emojis

5. Mix it up

Imagine following a fashion brand on Facebook and finding out that every single one of their posts features its own fashion products in the same manner – photos. Isn’t that boring? If every piece of content you put up follows the same format, chances are your audience will probably scroll past most of it because they’ve seen it before. Add variety to your page by posting your content in different formats be it videos, articles or questions. Make it even more engaging by holding contests or dishing out tips to your followers.

6. Get creative and mobile-friendly

Paint your brand story on a mobile-friendly platform. When Facebook promised that advertising would be immersive, they weren’t kidding! Canvas ads fill the entire screen of your smartphone and exists within Facebook (instead of annoying pop-ups that take you to another app). Skincare brand L’occitane used texts, videos and images to capture its audience by sharing its brand story and used call-to actions (CTA’s) to promote their gift sets.

loccitane

Brands should be making use of these great features to help share content that really stands out and drives action.

7. Go live

You’re a business operated by humans so show that to your consumers. Facebook Live allows brands to share a more personable side with fans, and Dunkin’ Donuts was one of the first brands to utilise this platform to engage with their audience. They provided a tour of their test kitchen and streamed the construction of a donut wedding cake live. Who doesn’t like an exclusive behind-the-scenes look?

Make sure the content you put up live is relevant and appropriate to your audience. You can hold live Q&A sessions and get fans to tune in, and you’ll also be able to see who’s watching your video. Promote your live sessions in advance to ensure that people are aware it will be happening.

 

Remember that visibility of your brand on Facebook depends on the content you post and therefore the engagement on your Page. Make the most out of Facebook and what it offers, and capture your fans by tweaking your content strategy to suit their interests.

Get in touch with us at hello@mutant.com.sg to find out how we can craft targeted and effective social media content.

 

How Pokémon Go hit the marketing jackpot

Yesterday, a friend pulled into my parking lot to drop me off and asked to ‘sit for a while’. I thought he had to tell me something personal, as that’s what most ‘parking lot chats’ entail. He pulled the break and points his phone out the window, “DAMN”.

He did not catch the (common) Rattata he was looking for.

That’s a Pokémon that looks like raging mouse.

Without a big budget marketing campaign, Pokémon Go gained more users than Twitter in just a matter of days. Advertisers should take cues from this app that lets you ‘catch’ a variety of monsters (both cute and hideous) in real world mobile GPS locations. The success of the simple game is proof that some classic marketing rules still apply no matter how much tech and user habits evolve.

Here’s what you can do to mimic the success of Pokémon Go :

1. Solve a problem before selling

The thing about good marketing, is that it’s indirect, and passively helps the consumer. The Go campaign wasn’t ‘Hey here is an app where you can see Pokémon through your phone with x, y, z using augmented reality, and GPS’, it was ‘Use your phone to find Pokémon in the real world.’ The app turned into a free tool, not a product.

2. Evolve with your consumer

Pokémon used to be just cards, then it became a show, now it’s a mobile game. In the mobile market, gaming is king.

Global data and consumer insights firm, NewZoo predicts that gamers worldwide will generate a total of $99.6 billion in revenues in 2016, up 8.5% compared to 2015. Pokémon Go took off because it targets the most powerful group of mobile users in the world: Gamers. The most watched person on YouTube is PewDiePie, a video game reviewer with over 46 million subscribers. And Kim Kardashian is currently on the cover of Forbes for making $45 Million of her mobile video game, Hollywood.

As a result of resurrecting the brand onto mobile, the social discussions of the game have penetrated into mainstream social media causing a worldwide takeover.

3. Make it free and social

Nowadays people are sold on a product the second they see a positive review first, or hear a discussion about it. So make your product or service as free and as accessible as possible for the launch to build an audience base, and ensure that every single step of your marketing plan is easy to communicate online.

Sticking up a product next to a model on Instagram might get it likes, but seeing people truly engage with your product will get real conversions. The internet is bubbling over with Pokémon memes and reports, one of the main reasons is how easy it is to share an experience. You don’t need a fancy explainer video, you just need to connect with your audience.

Pokemon Go is living proof that no matter how much digital trends have changed the marketing game, traditional marketing still works and should still be a part of your brand’s overall strategy. In Singapore the game was only turned on momentarily before going back on the long wait list of countries yet to have it in their app stores. This explains my friend’s disappointment for not seeing a virtual rodent in my parking lot.

Need help with your brand strategy? Get in touch with us at hello@mutant.com.sg.

 

Are you adding those snaps to your brand story?

You’ve realised the potential of building your brand’s presence on social media. You’re running a great Facebook page and you have an Instagram account with a massive following. Your Twitter page is updated every ten hours and engagement is high. Everything seems perfect…

Or so you think.

The idea of Snapchat was born half a decade ago and its founders turned down Facebook’s offer to buy it over for US$3 billion in 2013. Today, Snapchat is the fastest growing social network for millennials.

If you’ve not jumped onto the Snapchat bandwagon, you’re missing out on reaching the 100 million active users around the world. You might argue that you’re not trying to target Millenials – but hey, don’t all kids grow up? Trust me, the majority of them have friends or relatives of all ages and can surely share your content with them.

If you haven’t began your Snapchat journey, its not too late to start. Heres’s some tips to get you going:

1. Offer time-sensitive deals

A post on Snapchat, or more commonly known as a ‘snap’, lasts for a maximum of 10 seconds and is available for only 24 hours. This initiates a sense of urgency and FOMO (fear of missing out) – which means more people are likely to view your content.

Here are some brilliant examples of how to surprise your followers with small perks – a sure way to build brand loyalty. Better yet, get them to screenshot the snap (you can see who screenshots your posts). It makes your post more shareable and this stretches the reach of your content.

time deals

2. Rock behind-the-scenes

You don’t need to look pretty on Snapchat – save those filters for your Instagram feed. Build your brand’s personality into each snap and offer your followers exclusive content.

Take a look at these snaps from Free People. If you’re a fan of their clothes, wouldn’t you want these little sneak peeks? Well, I certainly would. They don’t have to be shot in great lighting or filtered perfectly. Be authentic – you’re showing your followers what goes on behind that six-hour photoshoot and we know it’s not all rosy!

3033793-inline-i-7-the-best-brands-on-snapchat-so-far

 

3. Go live

Yet another way to provide an element of exclusivity – give your followers access to live events that happen right there and then. Leverage on your Facebook or Twitter accounts and tempt people to tune into Snapchat.

Vanity Fair got up-close-and-personal with celebrities at the 2015 Oscar Party, and of course its followers did too.

oscars_vanity

 

4. Tell a real story

Like most social media networks, the main purpose of Snapchat for brands is to engage viewers and ideally convert them into consumers. Boring content only leads followers to move to another story and You don’t want that to happen to yours!

Great tip: Ask your followers a question in one snap, and answer it in the next. Keep them on their toes and make the process fun and interactive.

GrubHub did a fantastic job in leveraging Snapchat to convey a message. It doesn’t shout for followers to purchase, but centres its snaps around the main product offerings. Check it out:

 

tell a story and engage

5. Empower influencers

Influencers rule social media and Snapchat is no stranger. Partnering with Snapchat influencers is more commonly known as a ‘Snapchat Takeover’. This is where influencers sign into the brand’s Snapchat account for a period of time, and post content aimed to increase followers, reach and engagement.

Disney approached Shaun McBride (@shonduras), a Snapchat influencer renowned for creating sophisticated art works on his snaps, to promote a Frozen-themed event. Fans got a chance to follow him go around Walt Disney World on Disney’s Snapchat story.

 

influencer

 

 

The best feature of Snapchat is that your story is always fresh. Vertical videos now allow brands to capture audience attention by taking up entire screens, which means that your audience is completely focused on your snaps without any distractions.

How do your followers find you?

If you’ve got a mailing list, let your subscribers know that you’re on Snapchat by including your username and reasons why they should follow you in your next emailer. Alternatively, you can add your Snapchat username into your bio on your various social media platforms, or share your Snapcode as an image on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Need help deciding on the best social media strategy for your business? Get in touch with us at hello@mutant.com.sg.

 

FunTech: Make that content cray

Making tech sound complicated is easy. Just whir adjectives, buzzwords, and punctuation into a blender and you have the first boilerplate for many startups. But making unsexy topics sound fun is totally do-able, it’s just a matter of finding a creative angle.

Almost all industries require content because words travel fast. So, to effectively create articles that are more fun and engaging, try these simple tips:

Warm up with your intro

The beginning of the article has the most room for weirdness. Feel free to start off with a joke, or a topic everybody can relate to. For example, if you’re writing about your newest cloud platform, talk about the issue that it’s solving rather than getting deep into the features right away. Or pick a hot news topic to spin off of. I.e. “While we can’t take #brexit back, at least we’ll be able to…” Riding a news hook for your blog is great for SEO and will lure the reader in right away.

Quote more interesting people

As a content writer you’re not going to be an expert at everything, so get the opinion of someone who does. A quote from an expert (especially a funny one) can really bring a piece of writing to life.  If you don’t have anyone specific, quote someone who has an excellent view point on the subject.

Check your tone

Don’t be too formal. Geek speak will soak up the fun like a mouthful of Scottish Shortbread without a glass of milk in sight. Sarcasm, humour and wit can be carried across any topic. Be upbeat so it’ll be easier for your audience to read it. Happy readers means more shares.

Be concise

A super wordy post will cast your reader’s eyes from your blog to instagram memes in 30 seconds or less. If there is a word that can be taken out, remove it, if there is one word that can replace three, replace it. The fewer words the better.

Here’s a tip: Show don’t tell. Instead of saying something is ‘smart, innovative, state of the art, revolutionary’, explain how it works, why it’s different, and lead the reader to come up with his own adjectives.

Pick a picture outside of the box

Alright alright, the ol’ ‘hands on the keyboard’ photo is always a great default for online blog topics, but take your stock photo game one step further. The image should illustrate the article you write, but not imitate it. Use metaphors with your imagery and people will be able to channel more than just what meets the eye. For example, you’re writing about how a certain app can connect us all, a picture of laughing people in a crowd, skyscrapers, globes, or even traffic can still elicit the feeling of ‘ connection’. Making the reader work just a little bit will help them remember your article.

Writing is hard

 

And there you have it! Making content go a little cray just takes some imagination, creativity, and thinking outside the box. Need more advice on adding a little zing to your content? Write to us at hello@mutant.com.sg.