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Instagram For Business: Power of the Visual

We’ve recently jumped on the Instagram-wagon (terrible, we know). As well as making us all point our smartphones at our meals or look like tourists in the street, we’ve unlocked some great possibilities when it comes to producing content for clients.

We all know the famous line ‘content is king’; or ‘content is kingmaker’ as Yousaf Sekander recently stated at Brighton SEO. For people to actually follow you, you need to have your content reach them, and to do that you need to encourage those who do follow you in the beginning to spread it around. If you can produce something completely unique that can transcend the field or niche you’re in, you’re onto a winner.

Instagram has a bit of a reputation as being the tool for wannabe photographers who think adding a filter to any old photo makes them trendy. Yes, those people do exist but Instagram also an easy and free way to jazz up an image. It can separate you from the hundreds of images that an individual sees each day. It also feels a bit more personal and the filters can stir feelings of nostalgia which people instantly gravitate towards. Unlike something like a YouTube video which requires you to put in time to consume, a picture is a bite-sized chunk.

I also came across Pinstagram, where you can actually view your photos on a desktop which you can’t do at the moment through Instagram alone. You can also easily upload these to Pinterest. On these kinds of sites, with the right bit of filter-magic, mundane products like door locks, which we take for granted, can be transformed into gothic masterpieces.

So who could Instagram benefit? Well, like Pinterest, those who work in a field whereby their product or service relies on the visual, would benefit largely from a presence here. Those services where the finished product captures an audience and floods them with possibilities in their own life. Interior design or home improvement sites give themselves up to material which can instantly stir a reaction in someone and prompt them to click ‘Like’ and want to share it with others. And as we were taught at Brighton SEO, if you can get in with the right “influencers” to relay your content, you’re onto a winner.

That’s what is so great about social media, especially for business. Many incorrectly view it from the outside as something which teenagers sit on updating each other about what sandwich they’ve just made. YouTube is a social media site or at least is a video-streaming site which has integrated social media aspects into it’s interface so you can follow or subscribe, comment back and forth, create your own profile and more. The active element sometimes gets overshadowed by the passive nature. For businesses, there is a wealth of tools available (and more being made every year) to be utilised and get your message across.

So think about the possibilities for your business to make an impact through a visual form. Words are important in the form of web-copy and article-writing, but there are many other avenues to go down.

How We Use Social Media – Meeting the Team Part 1

Recently here in Peacehaven, we have undergone some changes; we have said goodbye to Cat (congrats on the wedding!) and are awaiting the arrival of our new intern and dog (two distinct members, I assure you). In this new series of blogs, I decided that, following this re-structuring, we would get to know each member of the office, looking at how they use social media in their day-to-day lives.

I thought I would begin by interviewing…. myself, so we could ease in to things slowly. So here we go; I promise not to sound too much like Jekyll and Hyde.

Paul

So Paul, what is your role at I Say! Digital?

I began an internship here in May, and have recently been offered a full-time position as a team co-ordinator. I perform quite a range of tasks from content writing which includes proof-reading, corresponding with contributors, managing social media accounts, some PPC, proposals, maintaining our own site, offering ideas to increase business and the odd bit of taking things to the recycling point. Pretty much anything that helps business chug along day-to-day. Going forward I’ll be a project manager on a few things too.

And what social media networks do you use?

Well Paul, I use the biggies like Facebook, Twitter and Google+; though with G+ it has taken me a while to get into and integrate into my routine. It was more when I began my internship here and started to follow those in the SEO and social media industry, that it became a worthwhile pursuit. I’m also a keen Redditor, because it collates everything that appeals to me in one site, and I like the idea of an internet democracy which votes on what is quality content.

Any that you stay away from?

I’ve never really used things like Foursquare because I didn’t have a smartphone until recently so it seemed a bit pointless to just sign in to being at home or work. I’ll probably start using that a bit more especially when going to conferences, like Brighton SEO, in the next few months. I’m not a huge Pinterest fan either as it all seems a bit disorganised and random to me, though I occasionally come across a really great image that becomes my screensaver.

What do you gain most from social media?

I’m a huge television geek, and watch loads of obscure shows from America. I like being able to stay up late when they’re broadcast over there, and see what people on Twitter are saying while a show like Breaking Bad or Community airs. Because I don’t really know anyone who watches the same shows as I do (everyone else has a social life), and don’t have the proverbial water-cooler around which to talk about them, I can bring the water-cooler to me, so to speak. I like the idea of getting instant reactions rather than wait the next day. It’s also really cool to see the variety of places that bands I like are in at that moment. It took me a while to get into the way Tweets were so fragmented and broken up but now it’s plain sailing.

Why did you choose social media to be a part of your career?

I never really considered it because, to be honest, it seemed too good a prospect to even consider a viable option. It was only through being an administrator for a music society at University, where we used social media to plan for events and get discussions going, that I gained my first experience outside of my personal leisure. I had a really terrible experience in my first grad job, which wasn’t media-related, and realised that doing something that you really get a sense of fulfillment and personal satisfaction out of  means so much more and so I looked into it. It’s been hard starting over and learning a lot of background that I didn’t previously in my degree, but it’s been completely worth it and I actually enjoy listening to podcasts about SEO and social media in my free time; on my commute, I can easily go through ten episodes of geeky chatter about relevant updates.

So you use social media during your day?

Pretty much from when I wake up to when I go to sleep, more so now I have my snazzy phone. I can keep in touch with what my friends are up to without sending a long message to each of them with the same questions. What is quite nice is a lot of the tools or sites I use at work are different to those I use in my free time, and with changes occurring every month in this industry, it’s a cat-and-mouse game of grabbing people’s attention. The best part is when you completely forget that not everyone is in tune with social media, especially in our line of work where many business owners don’t realise the potential in having an online presence. Walking clients through the fundamentals of our SEO services is enjoyable, but when you can see how passionate they are about their own business and you show them that they can express this in a way that can actually impact their bottom line, it’s fantastic. Often the perception is that a social media or SEO strategy will be additional work which is completely the wrong mind-frame.

Why Pinterest is a Must for Businesses

Pinterest for Business

Step aside Facebook, Twitter and Google+. There is another home for you to place your Social Media Content to act as a Marketing Tool for Business.

Pinterest is a Social Sharing Platform, launched in 2010 that is experiencing massive growth. Any Seo Company will tell you that it is driving more traffic to businesses using Social Media than Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Linkedin combined, according to Content Sharing Site Shareholic.

Should the small Business take notice ? Firstly you should understand how Pinterest allows you to Show, Share and Organise photos which friends, family and other Businesses can Re-Pin on their boards allowing content to go viral.

Here are some reasons why Business owners perhaps with a Social Media Blog might want to sign up to Pinterest.

* You can post images of your product.

* Pinterest is driving buyers to their websites.

* It works really well for businesses with visual products.

* A massive amount of people will see your content.

* It’s an extremely easy way to start to learn how to use Social Media.

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