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In the world of startups and small businesses, there is a lot of misinformation and confusion about social media handles

We understand that when it comes to business, entrepreneurs want to make the right choice. They are careful about every step of the branding process, even social media handles, so it is no surprise that some people are hesitant to take a business name if the social media handles are taken. In the world of startups and small businesses, there is a lot of misinformation and confusion about social media handles. Many people don’t realize that, like a domain, a social media handle is a way that potential customers can find your business online. However, like domains, you do not always need an exact match social media handle. [si_guide_block id="82119" title="Download our Free Resource – 10 common social media marketing mistakes" description="Avoid the pitfalls that limit engagement with your…

Storytelling helps form connections and captivate your audience, making them an effective part of your social media strategy

Who doesn’t love a good story? Whether it’s as toddlers, captivated by Maurice Sendak’s Wild Things book, or as adults watching our favorite movie, we love to get to know the characters, see how the story plays out and maybe experience an unexpected 'plot twist.' If you love stories so much in your personal life, why not craft and share some in your digital marketing work? Doing so will not only turn more of your passive visitors into engaged followers - and eventually paying customers - but your team will have some fun in the process. This post shares how best to do this via your social media channels. But first I’ll explain what a story is, which types of stories to tell at each stage in your buyer’s journey and how to measure the…

Social media strategy and planning essentials

First let’s answer the question, “What is a social media strategy?” A social media strategy defines how your organization will use social media to achieve its communications aims and the supporting platform and tools it will use to achieve this. At a basic level it’s a simple statement of intent, outlining the goals and measurable objectives for using social media, and the target outcomes you want to achieve. It does this in the context of the overall business and comms plan so that social media isn’t in a silo but working in parallel with other channels. It isn’t a detailed plan of action – you’ll also need a plan but without a clear strategy, how do you prioritize the activities for a plan? Think strategy first, plan second. Even if you’re not actively involved in social…

Our compilation of the latest social media statistics of consumer adoption and usage

Social networks are now so well established, that there is a core 'top five' social networks that don't change much from year-to-year. But, as we'll see in this post, the most popular social media sites vary a lot by level of usage in different countries and demographics. Understanding these differences in popularity of different social networks is really important when targeting specific audiences. When comparing the most popular social networks it's best to review them by active account usage, not just the number of user accounts. We'll also see in this summary that some social networks are growing more rapidly than others while some are now in decline.

2019 social media stats update

We'll keep this post updated during 2019 as the latest statistics are published drawing on our recommended top 10 digital marketing statistics sources.…

Chart of the Week: More than 1.12 billion accounts spread across Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp now watch or create Stories every day

When it comes to social media marketing trends, Stories is the big one you need to watch. More than 1.12 billion accounts spread across Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp now watch or create Stories every day, representing a 987% increase since the start of 2016. It isn’t just individual users that are causing Stories to grow hugely in popularity, more brands, companies and marketers are making the most of them. Buffer’s State of Social 2019 report has found that 57% of brands have found that Stories have been an "effective" part of their social media strategy.

The effectiveness of Stories

Of the…

Chart of the Week: 50% of marketers say that personalizing content and experiences is a key challenge for social media in 2019

Personalizing your social media strategy is key to success in 2019, according to Hootsuite’s Social Media Trends research. Highlighting five of the top trends for the year ahead, Hootsuite found that rebuilding trust is a big must, which could be achieved by personalized content – especially as 50% of survey respondents say this is a key challenge for 2019.

Personalized content could help rebuild trust

Considering the amount of hot water that some social media platforms have been in recently, it’s no wonder that rebuilding customer trust was named as the top trend to be aware of. Facebook is still feeling the waves caused by the Cambridge Analytica scandal, with a huge number of people calling on the platform…

Social media strategy and planning essentials series

The social media landscape is constantly evolving. New networks rise to prominence (e.g. Snapchat), new technology increases user participation and real-time content (e.g. Periscope) and existing networks enhance their platform and product (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram launching ‘buy’ buttons). Organic reach is also shrinking as the leading networks ramp up their paid channels to monetise platform investment. If the first era of social was engagement, the new era is acquisition and conversion. Social commerce is growing much faster than retail ecommerce, although it’s early days. The top 500 retailers earned $3.3bn from social commerce in 2014, up 26%. Many retailers I work with are seeing social driving bigger % increases in retail traffic than any other channel. Social is no longer just about conversation and content; it’s now an established channel for customer…

High user volume caused Alexa to crash on Christmas Day, Google is testing new search with importance placed on streaming, Instagram launches new features for Stories and Facebook is testing 'dark mode' for its Messenger app

We may have switched off for the holidays and New Year, but it's now time to take a look at what news stories in the marketing, tech and social media worlds were missed over the last couple of weeks. First up is the news that Amazon's smart speaker was such a popular item this festive season that Alexa crashed on Christmas Day across many parts of Europe. It just goes to show that the idea of a smart home is becoming increasingly appealing for many. It also looks like Google is just about ready to admit the importance of streaming services, as it seems to be testing a new design for search that puts streaming higher up…

Discover six costly mistakes that marketers make with social media and how to fix them

Despite the herculean changes to both technology and media, marketers have no choice but to build emotion-rich and customer-centric strategies to always stay on top. In the struggle to sink into the trivial details of the marketing functions especially with social media, some of the smartest marketers sometimes go wrong in strategizing the right way with social media. So, do you wish to make your social media marketing a flawless one?

1. Not choosing the right social media platform

Why is it necessary to pick up the right social media platform for your business? You can only call a platform perfect for your business if it enables you to use the best of its functions that can enhance your business presence and add value. The ultimate idea is to reach widely, to enhance visibility, to add value, to understand your followers, to…

Key social media trends for 2019 that every marketer needs to keep an eye out for and include in their digital marketing strategy, based on predictions from leading industry experts

Social media is ever-changing. Be it new platforms, different consumption habits or varied forms of communication, social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp etc. are always coming up with innovative features or affordances that add different dimensions to the platforms. These changes not only help users engage in a number of different ways with their favourite brands online but also give marketers a chance to captivate their audiences through an array of tools and tactics. [si_guide_block id="49146" title="Download our Premium Resource – Digital media options cheatsheet" description="Our Digital media cheat sheet is aimed at helping Smart Insights premium members to keep track of the free and paid media options so that they're not missing out on any of the latest…

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