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3 More Reasons for Brands to Use Instagram to Boost Influence and Drive Sales

inst9-23Instagram is a unique medium for brand advertising unlike any other platform in the social space. The visually driven community allows users to communicate in the universal language of photos and videos, opening the world to the possibility of more "humanized'' content.

Instagram’s growth and reach speaks to its massive appeal to the millennial audience. Instagram provides huge advertising opportunities to drive brand awareness and purchase intent to those brands that understand users want content made for users by other users who understand them best.

3 ways to build brand equity through prestige marketing

prestigeRestaurateurs and master chefs citywide cried tears of joy and despair as the Michelin Guide announced its New York restaurant ratings in Soho recently. To be knighted by the storied red guide is to achieve culinary greatness, and to lose a star is to suffer inglorious defeat.

Who was behind this renowned tradition in the world of fine dining? A tire company. Such is the power of luxury branding to elevate an image that goes far beyond the product itself. Here are three key steps to incorporating prestige into your own branding strategy.

4 messaging apps for marketers to tap in 2016

messaging appsWhen it comes to messaging, Snapchat and Facebook-owned WhatsApp and Messenger are the go-to apps of millennials and marketers alike. But Snapchat and Facebook aren't the only names in town.  Increasingly, a new crop of messaging apps is growing in popularity...

4 Strategies to Help Protect Your Brand in Social Media

4 strategies to help protect your brand in social media

Social media marketing is one of the cornerstones of online brand building. It doesn’t matter if you run a blog, own an eCommerce store, or manage a brick and mortar business. If you value your brand’s online identity and authority, then building a social media presence is a worthwhile endeavor.

But before you get too carried away, remember that social media marketing can be dangerous for smaller brands. If you’re not careful, you could be vulnerable to “fails” and aggressive competitors who aren’t afraid to play dirty.

4 Virtual Reality Campaigns Which Highlight the Brand Potential of the Medium

4 virtual reality campaigns which highlight the brand potential of the medium

Virtual reality is set to change the way marketers engage with audiences. No longer will we need to describe a brand experience or show a two-dimensional video, VR provides a fully immersive audience and brand experience, which can help drive significant engagement.

With audiences becoming overloaded by marketing messages on multiple platforms, VR gives users no choice but to completely immerse themselves into the content, resulting in fewer distractions and stronger emotions.

5 Brand-Building Ways to Use Periscope

periscope for your brandIt’s been just over a year since Periscope launched, and at last count, the application had more than 10 million users, with 2 million daily users.

5 steps to master your next social campaign

social campaignPeople still don’t get social media. And I’m not just talking about Donald Trump.

It’s an established best practice for building community support for a point of view or an initiative, and that’s because it works. There’s no better way to harness those who already agree with you as surrogates to carry your message (often in their own words) to other people who know and trust them, whom you wouldn’t otherwise reach.

That doesn’t mean it’s not still a minefield. Just look at some recent headlines.

6 Brands That Are Killing It on Instagram

IS12-2These six brands are showing how the social media platform's visual capabilities can be used to engage consumers more effectively than other platforms out there.

Having recently turned four years old, Instagram’s user base of just north of 200 million may pale in comparison to Facebook’s 1.35 billion, but the engagement rate for brands on this visually oriented app is hard to beat in the social media ecosystem.

6 Tips for a Better LinkedIn Company Page

5-12LILinkedIn Company Pages are a great way to brand your business, and share key content, information and updates with a targeted audiences. All employees who list your company on their profile are automatic followers of your company, and others may choose to follow your Company Page at their option. When you post great content to your Company Page, your followers engage with the updates and share it with their networks which amplifies your reach and serves to build your following even more.

6 Ways to Improve ROI From Branding Campaigns on Social Media

6 ways to improve roi from branding campaigns on social media

Branding campaigns rarely get the same strategy love as direct response campaigns, where a specific action is taken as a result of the campaign.

According to the Association of National Advertisers, marketers currently focus on relatively qualitative metrics to measure the success of branding and sponsorships, including “social media exposure,” “increased awareness,” “activity on brand website” or “improved brand perception.”

And the #Oscars winner is… branding

Oscars 2016Today's the day everyone finds out who won at the Oscars. Dr. David Waller breaks down the ways brands are jumping on the bandwagon.

Color Psychology In Branding: Industry Colors Explained [Infographic]

color psychology in branding industry colors explained

Colour psychology has become a vital part of branding and logo design in modern commerce. With 80% of visual information from logos coming from color alone, careful attention needs to be paid to the message that each choice is likely to convey to the viewer.

This infographic, created by Towergate Insurance, analyzes the logos of 520 companies. It identifies their color preferences and explores the emotional responses that these logos may be designed to provoke.

How 10 Nonprofit Brands Roll on Twitter

5-19TMany nonprofits, such as Operation Smile, the World Wildlife Fund and the Central Park Conservancy, are doing Twitter so well they're outperforming their business brethren.

Branding. Marketing. Selling. There are countless reasons why you would use social media for business. And if you’re a nonprofit organization, one of those reasons is fundraising.

How Far Is Too Far in the Race for Eyeballs?

EB12-2The war for eyeballs online has gotten pretty grotesque. There is seemingly nothing that is off limits. And yet, as an entrepreneur, if you are trying to grow your business, it can feel as though you need to play the game, or risk losing customers -- and revenue.

But at least one company says it has come to the edge of acceptable and it is backing away from the line. Or, in this case, perhaps it is more apt to say, it has come to the edge of the cliff and is erring towards caution.  

How to Find Your Brand Voice on Social Media

how to find your brand voice on social media

Your brand is the physical representation of your business’s values, mission, and personality. It typically takes shape through your logo, fonts, choice of imagery, and language across both print and digital marketing materials (i.e., business cards and websites).

However, as the world quickly moves to a more fast-paced communication style, and where social media is fast becoming a requirement for businesses, identifying your brand voice on social is a must.

How to Start Building Your Personal Twitter Brand Today

build your brand with twitterWhen an investor, business partner, potential employer or colleague searches for you on Twitter, what will they find? Is your profile professional and thoughtful? Interesting and opinionated? Or is it full of slightly inappropriate photos, random quotes and pictures of your lunches?

How to Use Twitter for Business

T10-17A look at why some tweets catch on and why some business are killing it using Twitter.

One of the big questions I have consistently in my daily personal Twitter activity is why do some tweets get a lot of love and retweets and why do some just sit there with not a chirp to mention?

A class from Nate Riggs, "The Secret to Business Success on Twitter," attempted to answer these questions and taught me a lot about how to succeed on the social platform.

Leveraging Brand Ambassadors

Leveraging-Brand-AmbassadorsIn a recent report from Nielsen, a multi-national company which measures consumers’ shopping and media habits, 84 percent of global respondents across 58 countries reported word-of-mouth recommendations from family and friends as the most trustworthy source of advertising. This means that the best way for a company to achieve brand advocacy—and ultimately increase revenue—is to connect with the social influencers and empower those people to intentionally share their stamp of approval with their extended networks.  

Millennials Expect a Consistent Brand Experience Everywhere

branding7-17By now we all know that today’s internet user expects an optimized experience wherever they virtually go. That’s especially true for Millennials. A recent survey from SDL reiterated data that the majority of 18-24s expect a consistent experience with brands across all channels and they access that information on multiple devices and offline.

What’s the bottom line for all of us given this information?

Now That Your Public Tweets Are Searchable, Here's How to Delete the Embarrassing Ones

TD11-20This week, Twitter opened up its archive to the public, making it possible for users to search every Tweet that's ever been published. According to the site's engineering blog, Twitter's search engine has indexed about half a trillion sent tweets, dating from its launch in 2006. 

Previously, the entire archive was only available to a few partners, like social analytics platform Gnip(which was subsequently acquired by Twitter in September), the Library of Congress and MIT's new Laboratory for Social Machines, which got a $10 million investment from the social giant in October.

Six Habits of Great Brand Leaders

brand8-1Having spent 20 years in the CPG world of marketing, I’ve seen almost a thousand Brand Leaders over the years. On the way up, I tried to emulate what I thought were the best traits and avoid what I saw as weaknesses. And at the senior level of marketing, I hired tons of Brand Leaders, promoted many and even had to fire a few along the way. I’ve been a Brand Coach the past few years, working closely with Brand Leaders. And I consistently see these six habits at any level, that separate those that are GREAT from those that are just GOOD.

Habit #1: GREAT Brand Leaders push for focused choices, using the word “or” and rarely using the word “and”.

Take Control of Your Personal Reputation Online With These 6 Tips

8-14repWhile most entrepreneurs diligently monitor their companies' reputations online, I have found that many fail to do so effectively on a personal level. For serial entrepreneurs who rely on their reputations, this could be very detrimental.

The Key Elements of a Brand Style Guide (and Why You Need One)

the key elements of a brand style guide and why you need one

As your small business evolves, so too will your range of marketing materials. From business cards to websites, and everything in between, you can quickly find that your small business is swimming in marketing collateral.

Before you get to this point, it’s wise to take a step back and create a brand style guide to ensure your print and digital marketing assets are coordinated and represent your business accurately and professionally.

The SocialRank Index Shows Companies How They Stack Up On Social Media

1-14SRSocial media analytics startup SocialRank released a new tool earlier today called the SocialRank Index — aimed at tracking and aggregating the performance of the biggest brands in the world.

This seems like a natural evolution of SocialRank, which started out as a side project for identifying your “most valuable follower.” Not surprisingly, it expanded with new data points and filters, though the main buckets are still valuable, engaged, and “best” followers. (The last category being a combination of the other two.) It also developed features to show users the same data about their competitors.

Using Customer Stories to Win New Business

customer storiesThree small-business leaders reveal how incorporating customer stories into their marketing helped them increase sales and win over new customers.

Have you ever noticed that the marketing of your favorite product seems targeted specifically to you and your friends? Yes, it’s intentional. And, after hearing a story about how a challenge similar to your own was solved by a new service, how much more likely are you to give the service a try? Pretty high, I bet.

What the Color of Your Logo Says About Your Company (Infographic)

8-29colorIf you are building a company that depends on making people feel sexy and sophisticated, it’s probably going to confuse your consumers if you your logo is bright green.

That’s because different colors are associated with different feelings. Green conveys organic growth, the earth, nature, or feelings of caring. Meanwhile, black communicates feelings of sophistication, authority or seduction. Not convinced? Consider the green logo for Starbucks or Greenpeace and the black logos of Chanel or Sony.

What Types of Brand Videos Do Consumers Want to Watch?

LevelsBeyond-Brand-Videos-Consumers-Want-to-Watch-Aug2014Roughly 6 in 10 US adults say they watch videos when they visit a brand website with video content, and 4 in 10 prefer watching a brand video over reading the same information, per results from a survey [download page] conducted by Levels Beyond. The study results add to a growing body of research suggesting that consumers have a healthy appetite for video marketing, with numerous surveys (such as this one) indicating that online product videos boost consumers’ purchase likelihood. But what types of videos do consumers want to see?

According to the Levels Beyond survey, consumers are most interested in how-to, instructional or tutorial videos (67%), followed by: