Instagram - King of Engagement

Facebook is Dead! Long Live Instagram!

The Demise Of Facebook

At one time, long ago, businesses were able to enjoy an average reach of 16% on their Facebook pages. It was a time when businesses could organically promote themselves by creating entertaining content and using fan-engaging apps. And not only did Facebook allow businesses to do this, but it also rewarded them for interacting with and providing value to their followers.

However, this might as well be a thing of legend, as businesses can no longer see these possibilities. Most are lucky to see a reach of 1% today, a peak that analysts like Social@Ogilvy say will soon dwindle to zero. With the Facebook ship all but sunk, businesses are now on the lookout for a platform where they can actually be seen and heard.

Facebook is dead

Instagram: The New King Of Engagement

Recently, Forrester studied more than 3 million user interactions with more than 2,500 brand posts on seven social networks. Their study showed that one platform stood high above the rest: Instagram.

The image sharing network boasted a per-follower engagement rate of 4.21%, 58 times more engagement than Facebook, and a whopping 120 times more than Twitter. But if we look at the user statistics, this should come as no surprise.

Every day, 55 million photos are uploaded, 86.4 million comments are posted, and 691.2 million users like various photos in their feeds on Instagram. The network has a 41% daily user rate, second only to Facebook (71%), and its popularity continues to grow. In Ireland alone we can see that the number of Social Network Account Owners with Instagram has risen steadily from 15% in November 2013, to 18% in August 2014.

Instagram - King of Engagement

Instagram Masterclass

SocialMedia.ie are now offering a half day Instagram Masterclass will teach you how to effectively adopt and leverage Instagram to increase your social media engagement. We will also show you how to effectively integrate Instagram with other social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

Instagram’s community has grown to over 200 million monthly active users over 75% of leading brands are already present on the platform. With so many conversations taking place on Instagram every day, many brands are now getting involved and adopting Instagram to create meaningful interactions with online communities.

Instagram Masterclass

Case Studies

We have been using Instagram in many different and innovative ways to help brands and companies reach a greater audience. Here are some examples:

St Patrick’s Day Campaign: We took to the streets on St Patrick’s Day with the ‘Selfie Studio’, taking photos of the festivities and getting people to pose for photos with our giant Xperia Instagram frame and lots of Paddy’s Day props. Our activity helped Sony Mobile launch their Instagram account and end up with 1,500 Instagram followers after the campaign ended.

Taste of Dublin 2014: Sony Mobile wanted to activate their sponsorship so we developed a foodie strategy and created SonyFood.ie. This was supported by the Sony Gigapixel Campaign which featured a giant image made up of thousands of fan photos taken at the food festival, all tagged in Facebook & Instagram applications which had a viral impact. We generated 50,000+ website visits and more than 7,000 new Facebook likes in 4 weeks.

St Patrick's Day

St. Patrick´s Day Campaign – Selfie Studio

Book your Instagram Masterclass now!

Learn more by contacting us on +353 1 906 0006, or by emailing team@socialmedia.ie

social media for charity case studies

5 Top Social Media For Charity Case Studies Including #icebucketchallenge

We all know social media is great for getting a message out there. And for charities, spreading the word can be a key part of what you’re all about.

As a not-for-profit, though, you have special needs when it comes to your social media campaigns. Sure, in an ideal world, raising funds from your followers online would be a dream come true. But charities also have something else, something much bigger, driving their digital campaigns: hope for a better world. And their message for change is key to who they are and what they represent. Feeding more people, cleaning up the environment, war, illness – whatever the topic, people need to hear it, and hear it now.

All pretty complex stuff. And all important. But social-media friendly?

On the surface, probably not. Overburdening your supporters with bad news stories and policy papers is not going to grab their attention; not in a world where concentration spans online diminish quicker than you can type ‘YouTube cute cats’.

Sometimes you need to get above the noise by doing something different. There are great success stories out there of not for profit’s using social media to really grab and engage supporters that we can learn from:

 

1. The ALS Ice-bucket challenge

The ALS Ice-bucket challenge

The ALS Association has to be mentioned for its incredibly successful campaign with the Ice Bucket Challenge (even my Granny’s heard about it).  The ‘challenge’ gave grown adults a chance to regress to childhood by playing with water, and then getting their friends to play too. All in the name of charity. Better still, it cost the ALS Association basically nothing to run the campaign #icebucketchallenge, and has brought in over €100 million in funds (yes that’s One Zero Zero million), along with thousands of new Facebook and Twitter fans for the charity.

2. Macmillan Cancer Support  

Macmillan Cancer Support

The Macmillan organisation offers support for people with cancer, and they provide lots of really useful information through their website. On social media, though, they are really rocking it, with loads of support videos on YouTube and very active Facebook and Twitter pages. The true key to their success, however, lies in how they connect day in day out with supporters. For example, a comment from any one of their whopping 500,000 Facebook fans on how cancer has affected them personally will almost always get a personal reply online, along with an encouraging message and options for a next step. Instead of being just about engagement and raising funds, Macmillan goes one further and uses social media as an extension of their support services. Unsurprisingly, they’ve garnered several awards for digital engagement as a result.

 

3. Greenpeace International

Greenpeace International

 

Greenpeace International has the digital world really working for them. Their social media activity spans all platforms including Facebook and Twitter but also Vimeo and Instagram. Regular mixed postings are made up of hard-hitting news items, new Greenpeace campaigns, and feel-good motivational quotes (very share-friendly). But their real strength lies in their use of videos and photos to draw the reader in – who doesn’t like watching Lego videos even when they are talking about the evils of petrol-producing companies? Pulling together some photos with a good soundtrack and a clear, inspiring message can brighten up any social media account and increase shares and new followers.

 

4. Human Rights Watch

Human Rights Watch

Human right violations are a difficult topic to talk about, and certainly not one that lends itself to the vagaries and whims of social media. And yet, Human Rights Watch do one really great thing with their social media – almost all of their staff seem to be active and representing the organisation online. Their personal accounts, glimpses into what a day in the HRW office looks like, and interesting news articles all shared on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube really help to humanise the brand and add a real, personal connection to their cause – social media gold dust.

 

5. Oxfam

Oxfam

 

Oxfam are active on all the mainstream social media platforms. But they get extra-special mention for their engagement with Pinterest, where to date they have over 1,600 pins and close to 5,000 followers. By developing visual material around food, one of the most popular topics on Pinterest, they are engaging supporters one of their key issues whilst reflecting the light informative tone typical to Pinterest feeds. They’ve also offered space on their Pinterest account for followers to include their own ‘Pins’, further strengthening engagement and increasing content with less effort.

 

Social media offers great opportunities for charities to reach people and spread a message – take note above. Who else in the charity world inspires you with their social media campaigns?

Written by: Aine Rickard

How top brands are using Instagram

How Top Brands Are Using Instagram

More and more, Instagram is illuminating our social media lives with eye catching content and captivating illustrations of the world around us.

Figures released by Instagram in November 2014 show registered accounts at more than 200 million monthly actives, with 65% of whom are based outside of the United States showing its global penetration.

In an Irish context, 18% of Irish adults have an Instagram account, with trends showing growth of 1% per quarter since November 2013, according to the latest Social Networking Quarterly from IPSOS MRBI. Of these Instagram users, 41% claim to visit the network at least once per day.

From Instagrams humble beginnings in 2010, top brands quickly identified the platform as a powerful and creative means of reinforcing their identity and increasing their exposure to customers. Instagram has empowered companies to experiment with different ways of visually expressing themselves by embracing the mantra “a picture is worth a thousand words”. Brands are telling stories to their followers with images, combining light-hearted content with business related postings.

Major global companies such as BMW, Adidas and Starbucks feature in the top 20 most successful brands on Instagram. Companies are using Instagram, in conjunction with other social media networks, to run exciting, visually stunning campaigns to launch new products.

Nike

Sitting pretty on top of the list for most successful brands on Instagram with 8.4 million followers, Nike has firmly established itself as the undisputed blue-ribbon brand on the platform. The key to their success lies in their understanding of the psychology behind Instagram. Upon visiting the Nike Instagram page, Instagrammers are hit with a blend of awe-inspiring landscapes with people in situ using their products.

Nike also reaches out and engages with their Instagram devotees and created arguably the most successful ever Instagram campaign, Nike PHOTOiD. The campaign centred around encouraging fans to design a colour scheme for their shoes and then upload them with a background image of their choosing. Nike integrated the competition across other social networks also, with many entrants sharing their compositions with friends. The best submissions were collated and published on Nike’s Instagram feed.

Nissan Europe

A household name in the car industry, the European operation for this leading Japanese car manufacturer launched an innovative campaign to promote their “Juke” range of cars. This was Nissan’s first foray in to the world of Instagram campaigns and has proved a launchpad for the success of their brand on the platform.

Instagrammers were able to take a picture of themselves, upload the photo to Instagram using the hashtag #JukeDNA and in return Nissan Europe would retweet a custom image of the uploader with the new Nissan Juke.

This was a very fun project which allowed fans of the car to have their “15 minutes of fame” by being retweeted by a huge brand like Nissan, and of course Nissan received a huge volume of exposure from people sharing their custom Juke image with their friends.

Jameson Irish Whiskey

Even on our own shores, traditional Irish brands are using Instagram to project their image and promote their products to both the Irish and global market. A company established in 1780 embracing Instagram, is a true indicator of the importance in innovation to remain relevant in today’s world.

When people think of whiskey, they can often conjure up the image of old men imbibing the spirit. Jameson’s Instagram page does a fantastic job at challenging this preconception. Their gallery contains many posts featuring young people enjoying Jameson. Content showing photos from Jameson sponsored music events and posts celebrating the arrival of the weekend resonate with a younger demographic than traditionally associated with whiskey drinking.

Jameson’s hugely popular annual “First Shot” competition which showcases the talent of emerging filmmakers is also given promotion on Instagram. Hollywood A-list actor and director Kevin Spacey is an ardent and continued supporter of the event. Using the hashtag #jamesonfirstshot, Jameson’s Instagram page highlighted Spacey’s association with the First Shot initiative by showing an image of the star attending the awards event. By aligning themselves with a celebrity of this calibre, and supported with a visual evidence, Jameson were able to bring some gloss, validation and Hollywood feel to their filmmaker awards.

Join the party!

We are only scratching the surface of what can be achieved through the magic and potential held within Instagram. Some of the world’s leading brands are taking advantage of this untapped digital marketing resource, isn’t it about time your business got in on the action?

Contact us today to enquire about our Instagram Masterclass which is aimed at educating businesses large and small on how to utilise Instagram to its fullest as part of your digital marketing strategy.

Written by Martin Gaffney.

Martin currently lives, studies and works for a large multinational in Cork City. He holds a Higher Certificate in Business and is currently studying a Bachelor of Business in Management at Cork Institute of Technology. Martin is an avid technophile and his interests range from engaging digital content to market research. Electronic music and Cork City FC are Martin’s other love interests. You can find him on Twitter @GaffKiiid.

Pixels and Palates Cook Academy

Pixels & Palates Event at Cooks Academy

Cooks Academy is celebrating their 10th birthday party.

If you are a food writer or food blogger and are interested in celebrating with us please send us an email to team@connector.ie with the subject Pixels & Palates Event.

This event will take place on Monday 1st of December at 6.30pm on 19 South William Street, Dublin 2

The theme is Pixels & Palates which includes:

  • Fun competitions like our ‘Cook Off’, ‘Molecular Gastronomy Challenge- Guess That Taste’.
  • A Foodie Social Media talk from digital experts SocialMedia.ie, with the inside scoop on new trends, building your profile and mastering tools like Instagram.
  • Unique prizes include a 4 week Certificate course worth €2,950, a full day pass to use our Sony Mobile Pop-Up Photo Studio, a Digital Audit for SocialMedia.ie and more.

You’ll have the opportunity to win these amazing prizes, enjoy an evening of mingling, great conversation and digital discovery. Food & drinks are on us so come and meet fellow bloggers, food writers and digital gurus.

Looking forward to seeing you in Cooks Academy for their birthday party!

Please follow @cooksacademy and #cooksacademy10 on Twitter and Instagram

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How to use amazing Instagram content to boost your digital marketing

If you don’t care about the future of your business or customers, stop reading now.

Instagram is a tremendously powerful platform and it’s your duty to leverage it for your business. User engagement levels are 15 times higher than Facebook, and over 75% of leading brands are already present on the platform.

Maybe you already knew that or you are already using Instagram.

But are you using it like the pros?

Most people are going in blind and then wondering why that photo of John’s leaving drinks didn’t get any likes; or why that whiteboard brainstorming session didn’t get any feedback; and don’t get me started on stock images of the product. The images aren’t appealing, and who wants to follow an assortment of photo garbage?

People want to engage with you, but most of the content you upload doesn’t relate to them.

It’s key that you get involved, start with a good foundation, create meaningful interactions with your community, and fine-tune your message to improve your brand’s visibility.

What’s the best way to do that you ask?

I’ve been playing around and experimenting with Instagram for the last two years. With ups and downs I’ve built a strong following by captivating and engaging my audience. I won the ‘Best Job in the World’ campaign by Tourism Australia, helped their marketing team with one million Instagram followers, and was a finalist in the first ever Insta-Film Festival.

These experiences have taught me a number of ways to organically grow and maintain a strong following. Yet nobody teaches these things in school.

I want to share with you a few examples and techniques that have helped me along the way. Here’s a teaser to skim the surface.

Examples:

————–

1. Pick Your Topic
Cats, food, fashion, nature, portraits, sunsets, selfies. Whichever you select, your photos need to be centred on that topic. Consistency is key.

If you have a talent (everyone does) you could showcase that. Be it dancing, drawing, literature, fashion trends, great cooking or an obscure interest. There are bound to be people searching for the same interest.

Pick a topic that you’re most happy with and stick with it. It will define who you are.

If all else fails, just take photos of your pet.

 

pick

 

2.  Hashtags (Done Right)
Ok so people (usually always) say you need to tag your photos. Each photo is allowed a maximum of 30 tags. But wait!

Stop hash tagging so much! You’re annoying people.

As you’re posting you can tag your photo with some relevant tags (zero to eight maximum), then wait and put the remaining tags as a comment so that not many people will see them, but makes your photo still findable in search.

 

hashtags

 

3. Reaching out to Accounts
To take you photos to the next level you need to get them in front of a huge audience.

There are hundreds of accounts with huge followings that repost other peoples photos. If they pick your photo you’ll get credited, and get great exposure.

 

accounts

 

Your job is to find accounts that post similar photos to you. Tag your photo with their name, tag their account and hashtag in your caption or in a comment under your photo, and hope they love your photography.

The more accounts that feature your photos the more likes and followers you get. In order to be featured your photos need to be epic.

———–

 

Here’s your chance to learn a lot more.

We’re offering you a course in the coming new year 2015 with some amazing material that will definitely help your business succeed. If you’re interested then drop us a line.

I’m @daxon on Instagram, or tweet me @daxon

 

Dublin Blogger Conference – For Lovers of #socialmedia

Dublin Blogger Conference

Want to be in with the chance to rub shoulders with the beauty, fashion, food, lifestyle and business bloggers of Ireland?

The Irish Blogger Conference takes place next Saturday, November 29th, at The Spencer Hotel and we’re giving you the chance to attend! The afternoon will kick off with a glass of Prosecco upon registration and include eight speakers covering a variety of topics including: Setting up a Blog, Blogging 4 Business, The Reality of Blogging, The Blogging Community, Top Tips 4 a Successful Blog and more. There will also be a Q&A with the speakers, followed by a networking session. This is not to be missed!

Thanks to Fiona for the invitation for Conor to speak at the conference about ‘The Business of Blogging’.

You can find more info on the event on Twitter @cooleventsinfo

For more great social media news, follow us @socialmedia_ie

Image collected from Fliker

Lovin Dublin lovin SocialMedia.ie 8-)

Lovin Dublin 2

SocialMedia.ie are delighted to be the social media partner for the winners prizes at the Loving Dublin Event.

Introducing The Lovin Dublin Show Live. A night of inspiration celebrating Dublin and highlighting the future talent of the city. LovinDublin.ie is hosting their first live event in The Bord Gais Energy Theatre at 7pm on Monday the 24th of November.

The night will present the “crème de la crème” of what our city’s foodies have to offer. It promises to be an inspiring and eye-opening evening which will allow both the established and new-comers to the Dublin food scene, to demonstrate their talent, flaunt their style and showcase their innovation.

For more information about the event you can visit their website

Thanks to the Lovin Dublin team for the invitation and we look forward to meeting all the foodies at the big event.

Their Twitter @lovindublin and follow @socialmedia_ie for more great social media news.

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From Butchers to Funeral Homes; The Growth and Relevancy of Social Media for Traditional Businesses

State of the Nation

In a recent study, Facebook was declared the most popular social media platform in Ireland, with 1.3m people using the website. The research was conducted by global digital behaviour analysis firm GlobalWebIndex. The study concluded that when compared with global trends, Ireland’s usage of social media platforms such as the aforementioned Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn, shows greater penetration rates than global averages.

Social media has infiltrated the minds and lives of every major demographic group on our island. Exposure to these platforms can occur at our desks, on our televisions and even from our pockets!

Some quick facts

The 2012 Social Media Marketing Report provided information that businesses operating in today’s world dare ignore to their detriment:

1. 94% of all businesses with a marketing department used social media as part of their marketing platform.

2. 85% of all businesses that have a dedicated social media platform as part of their marketing strategy reported an increase in their market exposure.

3. 58% of businesses that have used social media marketing for over 3 years reported an increase in sales over that period.

But not every business has the means to support a marketing department…

BakeryAt first, it may be a bit perplexing to see a local butcher, a corner-shop or even an establishment as reverent as a funeral home donning the iconic symbols of Facebook or Twitter on their storefront, imploring customer or passersby to “Like” our page or “Follow us”. When looking at the above statistic from The 2012 Social Media Marketing Report, one might deduce that such small and traditional businesses need not bother themselves with digital marketing as they do not operate sophisticated marketing departments. And besides, what interesting subject matter Beauty Parlourcould a local accountancy firm or a florist possibly want to project to the online masses.

Social media platforms such as Facebook, offer an attraction to small businesses as it is a quick, easy and free means of creating an online presence and exposure. The necessity for coding and HTML skills is eliminated. Having a website designed for small, localised businesses can be prohibitively expensive and very unlikely to attract hordes of new customers, so such businesses can use Facebook to build up a local community of fans who may be customers, future customers or other local supporting businesses. It is a very easy way to get your phone number and address out there, and also a forum for reaching out to your customers.

The butcher wishing the local GAA team all the best in their upcoming final, a small accountancy firm posting an explanation about a new government tax scheme, a local shop promoting the discounted goods of the week or a fishing equipment store posting information about the tides. The possibilities for content which interests and benefits your customers is endless.

As previously mentioned, joining these social media platforms is quick, easy and free. However, harnessing the true potential of these social networks to enhance the profile of your business and fully utilise the tools available can be challenging. By devising a focused digital marketing strategy, small businesses can reap huge benefits ranging from increased exposure and sales to being associated with local community initiatives to ensuring your business stands out from the crowd.

Contact us today to enquire about our tailored digital training courses which are geared towards businesses of all shapes and sizes!

 

Written by Martin Gaffney.

Martin currently lives, studies and works for a large multinational in Cork City. He holds a Higher Certificate in Business and is currently studying a Bachelor of Business in Management at Cork Institute of Technology. Martin is an avid technophile and his interests range from engaging digital content to market research. Electronic music and Cork City FC are Martin’s other love interests. You can find him on Twitter @GaffKiiid.

Credit for header image: Dean Meyers under CC License.

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Develop The Spookiest Marketing Campaign For Halloween

Since our whole Connector team is really brave and not frightened by ghosts or zombies, we are the perfect digital agency for you to work with this Halloween.

In our secret laboratory we have a team of highly skilled crazy professors who can help you with concepts, design, videos, games and all your social media requirements.

Last year, we did a spooky ‘Halloween Pumpkin Run’ campaign, where we delivered purple pumpkins filled with sweets to twenty lucky Dublin based agencies. See the photo below. Each and every pumpkin had the connector360 personal touch – hollowed out, painted and filled with treats by our very own minions. A QR code inside led to a special Trick or Treat page with our credentials and a party invitation. What a treat! We think we did a spooktastic job! ;-)

We can create campaigns for you right up until last minute but why not talk to us today about your Halloween campaign! Boo!

You can contact us at team@socialmedia.ie or call us on +353 1 906 0006.

Pumpkins

 

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Social Media Presentation at the Dublin Food Chain

Social Media Presentation at the Dublin Food Chain

We were really delighted to talk this morning at Dublin Food Chain.

Please visit Dublin Food Chain Breakfast Workshop for the full list of speakers and details about the event.

We hope you liked our presentation on How to serve up tasty social media for the food sector.

If you missed it you can find the presentation below

 

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