by: Carol Bryant
It’s that wonderful time of the year, and what better time to kick off “What’s Trending In Social Media and Blogging?!” See how many you know about and are utilizing in this great eight:
YouTube Unboxing Videos and Product Reviews
According to the Google Commerce blog, shoppers are turning more and more to YouTube for their holiday (and year round) purchases. If you work with brands or in any capacity and/or write product reviews on your blog, do you take your audience through a step-by-step of “what’s inside?” This includes packaging, unwrapping, if it’s a box service with contents one by one, and how the item(s) look in action.
Tailgate on Instagram Photo Contest
Entering photo contests can help your online presence if you enter the right contests: For example, right now there is a BlogPaws #BLUEHolidayContest with dog holiday photos to win a $50 #PetSmart gift card. Entering and putting this hashtag and others with it helps users on Instagram find you, especially those who like to explore different hashtags and pet accounts! Enter the dog photo contest here.
Instagram Sponsored Ads Via Facebook
Indeed, you can now insert sponsored content into Instagram feeds. A few basic tenets apply:
- Use Google Chrome so that…..
- You can use Power Editor
- Determine who your audience is, what the goal of your “ad” is, and be certain the picture is stellar: No fuzzy, grainy, or crowded shots. Clarity and beauty rule.
It can be confusing, and I had a bit of a spat with the process at first, so take it from someone who has done this: The bottom line is you run an ad on Facebook with a goal in mind and can attach your Instagram page to it so that it runs concurrently on that platform. Click here for the basics of creating an Instagram ad through Facebook.
Less is More Video
Vine is popular because the clips are 6 seconds of looping. Instagram allows for 15 seconds. Less is sometimes more: Say a lot with a little. Learn from the pros: Find some accounts on your favorite social media platforms and take note of what works for them and what does not. A word to the wise: Build your followers on social media as a priority: Infuse video to do so, but be a giver most of all. Put the social in social media.
Not So Crazy Pet People
Crazy cat lady, silly dog people, funny ferret moms, and well, you get the point: It’s normal to call your pet a member of the family. Heck, those of us in the know…know that pets are family and have been saying so like a tale as old as time.
“We’re consumers. We party, we shop, we bathe, we walk our dogs in strollers, we do all the same things mommy bloggers do,” BlogPaws’co-founder Yvonne DiVita says. “Our community is on the pulse of all things pet: from dogs to cats, rabbits to ferrets, and everything in between.”
Click to read: Pampered pets mean pets big bucks: Bloggers rejoice.
Mobile devices make and break us these days. Mobile is the new, well, everything in one swipe. In the aforementioned Google Commerce blog article, research shows that last year, 75 percent of smartphone shoppers planned to use their phones in store for the holidays.
Shoppers are heading into stores much savvier than even two years ago: Remember when you asked for help, wanted more info on a product, and wanted to be sure you got the “best price?” Nowadays, folks turn to mobile devices. In fact, one in three shoppers use their mobile devices for information instead of asking store employees.
Is your blog mobile optimized? Have you looked at it on a mobile device? If someone tuned into your blog or social media page and saw your images, would you be proud of what they are seeing? Learn what brands want in images here.
Face to Face Is Mandatory
I will stake my entire reputation on this one, and I know I am not alone in this sentiment: Face to face networking is so valuable to growing an online presence.
Cases in point:
Business conferences, social media conferences, offline events will become more powerful and more necessary than ever before. We need to step away from the Internet. We need to get in front of our colleagues, our friends, our prospects, our brands, whomever it is that can help us move our businesses forward. You do that by being present at conferences like our own BlogPaws conference. It’s more than a place to network. It’s a place to purposely take your new, small business two steps forward. Click to read who said this about social media face to face.
I am not privy to all the reasoning that went into my being invited to attend the dog show (neither do I know whether I was the last person on a long list whom they asked). But I can tell you this: It would not have happened if I had not attended the last BlogPaws conference. You guys, getting face to face with my blog and digital media role models and peers is the single most important thing I have done in my pet blogging career. The #1 reason I got to do this awesome thing is because of networking. They know me. (They also know I live within train distance of Philadelphia, have two Cardigan Welsh Corgis and am a dog nut. But still. So do a bunch of other people who have never been to BlogPaws!) What are you waiting for? Get your ticket! Click here to see who covered the National Dog Show in November because of her face to face networking.
Influencer Marketing Is In
If you aren’t familiar with influencer marketing, check out what Ad Week has to say about it. Note: It’s the next big thing. Influencer marketing puts a focus on select folks to get the word out instead of the market as a whole.
- Social media spend from brands is expected to increase 70 percent;
- Hard core sell sell sell mentality is out: Brands talking to their audience is key. Brands need to inform, entertain, and not be “in it to win it” — in other words, to sell. Selling is a goal, and as many bloggers do product reviews to inform our readers and help them make well-informed purchasing decisions.
Bottom line: Marketers want bloggers. Great ones. Be one.
What trends and hot spots are you seeing emerge in social media and blogging? Let us know in the comments below.