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The selfies pandemic on social media. Is it here to stay?

Selfies haven’t reached a peak since it is not just a trend – for centuries wealthy families commissioned artists to create self portraits. There are currently over 264,045,444 posts with the hashtag selfie only on Instagram and this is growing. Capturing a self-portrait is part of the DNA of this generation which loves documenting and sharing their lives.

Selfies had impacted social media in a way to empower youth to express in a visual way their moods, their experiences and connect with friends. Selfies have been monetised by companies engaging with people who create user generated content with and people turning themselves into brands by producing creative selfies and getting brands appearing on their profiles as advertising.

Some of the biggest international social media influencers now charge €60,000 per post and even higher if you are Kardashian!

Read more about the selfies from @vickinotaro, Irish Independent.

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SocialMedia.ie contributes to the Understanding Social Media book.

Conor Lynch and Ivan Adriel from SocialMedia.ie and Connnector.ie were proud contributors to the new book called “Understanding Social Media”. They attended the London launch party and had a great night as guest of the author Damian Ryan and the publishers.

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Understanding Social Media is the essential guide to social media for students and professionals alike. Drawing on the experience, advice and tips from dozens of digital marketers and social media superstars, it is an extensive crowd-sourced guide to social media platforms.

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Illustrated throughout with case studies from both successful and failed campaigns, Understanding Social Media democratizes knowledge of social media and promotes best practice, answering questions such as ‘How do you create a compelling social media campaign?’, ‘How do you build and engage with an audience?’ and ‘Where is the line between online PR and social media drawn?’ It is the most comprehensive and practical reference guide to social media available.

To buy the book go to www.koganpage.com/usm which are currently offering a 20% discount (cheaper than Amazon!) with code MKTUSML.

theSnapy

Welcome to The Snapys – The Awards for the global Instagram community

Our sister company Connector.ie is proud to announce the launch of another outstanding event called “The Snapys”.

The Snapys is a unique photo awards series powered by the global Instagram community and social media voting. Connector.ie aims to bring together the best of local photographers and connect them with the top global Instagrammers and brands. They will mash up the perfect mix of creative talent, interactive technology and good old offline parties!

The Snapy Awards will recognise the fantastic snaps from across 25 different categories such as food, travel, fashion, people, pets and some creative wildcard categories too! Winners will be selected by a panel of leading 75 Instagram Influencers as judges who will also be supported by votes from members of the public.

Connector.ie is proud to have Sony Mobile and JustEat.ie as partners and you still have a chance of placing your brand centre stage at this fantastic awards ceremony attended by over 400 leading influencers across many categories!

The Snapys Awards night in Dublin is being planned with a date to be confirmed. There will be categories for all brands and interactive fun, online and offline, to make The Snapys the coolest new awards ceremony for 2015.

The event has great PR and Marketing potential and will associate your brand with some of the best digital photographs in Ireland. Connector.ie also hopes to run events in London, Berlin, Sydney, San Francisco, Sao Paulo in 2015.

On the night, there will be live streaming of an online broadcast, a classy awards show, winners announcements of 20+ categories and an impressive live photo wall, with much more to be expected.

If you are interested in taking part as a guest or a sponsor get in touch with us or our sister company Connector.ie now! Let’s make this an unforgettable event together!

In late 2013, Connector hosted the amazing Instagallery event. With 200 attendees, over 150,000 page impressions on various social media channels, and media coverage in the Irish Times, the live photo gallery was a great success.

Contact Us – SocialMedia.ie or email us to team@connector.ie

Dublin Blogger Conference

Irish Blogger Conference Review From SocialMedia.ie

On November 29th the first Irish Blogger Conference took place in Dublin. The event was held at The Spencer Hotel and attracted a big crowd.

Amazing speakers were invited to talk about blogging and how important it has become in people’s work and lifestyle, specially in the subjects involving beauty, food and business. Conor was one of the speakers and his slides are below.

SocialMedia.ie gave away a great prize at the conference to one lucky blogger. The prize was a Blog Audit!

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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:

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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.

 

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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.

 

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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.

 

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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.

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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

 

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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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Aware’s #BeatTheBlues campaign brings colour to the darkness of depression

Some projects give us so much pride and happiness for contributing in some way to something bigger, like changing lives. That is the case of the latest Aware campaign which features their ambassador Dublin GAA star Bernard Brogan :)

Each year Aware currently delivers its Beat the Blues programme free to over 30,000 Irish students aged 15-18. With almost 75% of all serious mental health difficulties first emerging between the ages of 15 and 25, Aware believes it is vital to get in early and educate young people about how to recognise symptoms of depression and where possible prevent it from spiralling out of control.

Our campaign video features street art and the theme is bringing colour to the darkness and underlining the common issue of surviving which connects us all. This two-minute video – a collaboration with graffiti artist, HyerografX – is intended to highlight something that is fundamental to each and every one of us: our mental health. The video also highlights Aware’s work in schools, helping teenagers to understand the importance of looking after their own mental health and helping them to build resilience and develop coping skills :)

Be part of the change. Please join the #BeatTheBlues conversation, share our video or text BeattheBlues to 50300 to donate €4 to Aware.

5 Top Tips for Super Social Customer Service

5 Top Tips for Super Social Customer Service

Great customer service is the key to keeping everybody happy but in our changing world where customers are increasingly online, gone are the days of in store help desks, telephone helplines and even email assistance. Customers want their customer service online on social media and wise businesses know that wherever your customers go, you should follow. Enter social customer service.

Social customer service means transferring your customer help desk from your store to your social media profiles. A recent report by Accent Marketing revealed some staggering facts about social customer service – that nearly a third of customers use Facebook to contact a customer service representative, that half of those people believe Facebook is the fastest way to solve customer service issues and that nearly half of those expect to have their comment or query answered within an hour. With statistics like that, any business that does not consider social media a customer service tool should be changing their tune and getting on board with social customer service – fast. But how do you do that? Read more

Film Industry

Experimental ideas – The Future of Film industry

As featured on connector360, our little sister website, we will now bring you a collection of innovations from film industry.

1. What about keeping your smartphone switched on at cinema? That is the challenge of Cinime that developed an interactive app to “use your little screen to get more from the big screen”. Read More

2. Civil drone and helicopter use in cinema is offering new ways to shoot action and provide a significant change in film visuals. Here is an amazing example of what can be done:

3. Have you always dreamt of living in a movie? Thanks to virtual reality in cinema the gap between real and movie world will become so close that you will feel like being part of the film. Read more

4. This behind the scene video reveals the secrets of 7 Oscars winner film Gravity and the remarkable technological innovation created to shoot the movie.

5. A new concept inspired by the trend of Slow Food just shows up on TV and proposes a different and fun way to watch TV.

For more stories like this, follow us on Twitter @connector360