Tag Archives: social media

Connect with Millennials Through Snapchat

Many questioned Snapchat’s staying power when the company launched in 2011, but unlike the ephemeral nature of the network’s content strategy, Snapchat has proven it’s here to stay. Statistics show Snapchat has over 100 million daily users that combined watch 7 billion videos per day and contribute 8,800 photos per second. In 5 short years, the company has evolved from fad to one of the fastest growing and most intriguing social media networks on the internet. In 2016, Snapchat is projecting $300-$350 million in revenue, over 600% growth from the company’s 2015 projection of $50 million.

Snapchat thrives on allowing users to focus on the moment rather than perfection. Users can send photos and videos which disappear after they have been viewed. They can also craft “Snap Stories” which remain up for 24 hours after they’ve been posted. Snap Stories created an avenue for major corporations to deliver content  to their followers. Media companies like Vice utilize Snap Stories to deliver the news to millennials, while retail companies like Grubhub have had major success creating promotions.

Here are some creative ways companies are utilizing Snapchat:

MARKETING PROMOTIONS

Since Snap Stories disappear after 24 hours, users are motivated to watch stories frequently or risk missing out on an awesome moment. As a company, offering exclusive discounts or deals through a Snap Story is the ultimate incentive to increase snap views. Grubhub gained acclaim for their #SnapHunt Scavenger Hunt, which awarded 10 winners $50 in free food for each challenge. The personal, one-to-one nature of Snapchat makes it ideal for marketing promotions, which in turn increases your daily views and following.

A LOOK BEHIND THE CURTAIN

Many companies utilize social media to take consumers behind the curtain of day-to-day  operations. The spontaneity of Snapchat provides the ultimate network for such interactions. Snap Stories don’t have to be perfect, they don’t have to be major, they can be casual. Some companies utilize Snapchat to broadcast live events. Small events like birthday parties and company outings can make for engaging content.

Musicians often utilize Snapchat to offer glimpses at their new music. Tommy Hilfiger and Michael Kors both have used Snapchat to preview their new lines.

BROADCAST MEDIA

TV Networks like CNN and Comedy Central utilize Snapchat to promote their shows with bite-sized snippets designed to tease the viewer. CNN targets younger audiences with news stories relevant to them through the Discover function. Coca-Cola realized their audience could detect advertising when the company repurposed their TV commercials for the network, at which point they began creating Snapchat-specific content. The change ultimately was received with a 54% increase in video completion rate.

MAXIMIZING INFLUENCER MARKETING

As any social media expert knows, influencer marketing is key to developing a following and gaining access to new audiences. Snapchat’s emphasis on shared, intimate experiences with the individual makes the format ideal for celebrities and other influencers. Social media stars and acclaimed artists like DJ Khaled can document their day-to-day lives, including the clothes they wear, the stores where they shop, and even bizarre instances of getting lost at sea on a WaveRunner. Celebrities use Snapchat to create a narrative of their daily lives, an unparalleled opportunity for companies to incorporate their product or service and acquire positive brand association.

In one of the best uses of influencer marketing, Ben Stiller & Owen Wilson reprised their roles as Derek Zoolander and Hansel during a Valentino show for Fashion Week in Paris.

While Snapchat provides a major opportunity to market promotions, sculpting public perception of your brand in Snapchat requires a large amount of content in order to compete and keep users satiated. Snapchat is still a burgeoning network with an unlimited amount of possibilities. For an amazing look at the potential future of Snapchat, check out this awesome article from TechCrunch.

A Guide to Promotional Writing Part 5: Marketing Effectively Through Social Media

The Mystic Media Blog has devoted our expertise into a five-part series of articles detailing the ins and outs of Promotional Writing, concluding with this post on writing for social media. The series covered several topics, including general techniques, suggested processes, press releases, and website copy writing.

The advent of social media had a dramatic affect on culture and society. The entire world became interconnected at the click of a button. Suddenly, everyone’s favorite brands and artists were available for communication anywhere, anytime using your smartphone. The newspaper became even more irrelevant to the younger generation as they could receive news updates directly from their favorite artists and brands, skipping the middleman.

All brands should have their marketing team running multiple social media accounts. It’s the cheapest and most direct route to consumers who want to hear what you have to say; who show by the act of following/liking the brand that they desire information and communication.

In honor of social media, we’ve gathered tips for writing for social media and structured them with the succinct, direct quips fitting of the format.

“BREVITY IS THE SOUL OF WIT”

Most scholars agree Shakespeare would have killed the social media game. This famous quote from Hamlet rings true across all writing, especially social media. Rather than overloading followers with an abundance of wordy content, keep it simple, concise, and witty.

RESPOND/REACT QUICKLY

In order to engage consumers, it’s vital to reply and interact promptly with followers on social media accounts (especially Twitter!). Remember: direct replies don’t overload your Twitter followers’ feed, making them a great, more intimate way to communicate with consumers.

A favorite, retweet, or follow back can also engage a follower as much as a reply.

CROSS-PROMOTE

Tweet “Follow us on Facebook for more updates.” Post “Check out our Twitter page!” on Facebook. Tweet Instagram photos. Grow your fan-base and keep them aware of the multiple platforms of communication by cross-promoting accounts. As in all forms of promotional writing, the call-to-action is among the integral parts of posting to social media.

PLAY IT SAFE

Perhaps this should be the number one rule: don’t make people furious. Play it safe when it comes to topical events. Be respectful of tragedies and don’t post anything politically incorrect. A single tweet can have huge repercussions.

Be extra careful when attempting to create a trend through hashtagging. This McDonald’s horror story serves as a moral tale of how important it is to be conscious of potential reactions to a brand before posting.

BUT DON’T BE AFRAID TO GET CHEEKY

Followers want to see a little personality out of the social media accounts they follow. Although you don’t want to offend anyone, you also won’t get any real response from boring posts. Try to keep it cheeky and create humorous posts. Analyze what connects most to your audience, take notes, and refine techniques over time.

MEME IT UP!

Memes are a great, modern way of effectively promoting a product while imparting humor. Check out this awesome article on memes for marketers.

FIND AN EFFECTIVE SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGEMENT TOOL

Social Media accounts require around the clock management. When you have separate accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Tumblr, and Google+, it’s difficult to keep track of each account everyday. Social Media Management tools like Hootsuite, Buffer, and more can be vital not only in managing accounts, but researching your followers and what posts are most effective.

INTERACT WITH CELEBRITIES

Cross-branding can raise awareness of a company and allow them to find their consumers in creative places. Interacting with select celebrities with compatible brands is a great way to attain exposure, gain access to new followers, and grow brand awareness.

DON’T UNDERESTIMATE TUMBLR

Tumblr is among the leading social media platforms underutilized by marketing teams. Tumblr hosts over 130.5 million blogs, while WordPress only has 70 million. Tumblr users average 12 minutes of use per day on the network–1.5 minutes more than what’s spent on Facebook.

For more information on Tumblr, check out this article over at Social Media Marketing.

CONTESTS

Social Media, specifically Facebook, is an ideal place to host contests. Any and all action the user takes toward entering a competition through Facebook will be publicized to their friends and followers on their newsfeed. Facebook recently banned Likegating, which certainly represents a roadblock, as well as an opportunity for more innovative approaches to social media contests.

KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE

This has been the theme of our promotional writing series, so it’s fitting close this conclusive article with the most important part of all promotional writing: know your audience. With regard to social media, it’s vital to understand what will connect with those who consume and who may desire the brand being represented. Know the lingo. Know the humor. Know what your audience is reading and redirect them to cool articles.

The goal of promotional social media is not exclusively to attain sales, but to cultivate followers who will pause and consider what you write. Engage and expand your fanbase, give them what they want, and be consistent.

At Mystic Media, our vast experience in strategic marketing and application development for both iOS and Android gives us expertise on the all formats of promotional writing: from social media, to search engine optimization, copy writing, web design, and more. Learn more by clicking here or by contacting us by phone at 801.994.6815

A Guide to Promotional Writing Part 1: Representing Your Business

The Mystic Media Blog will be devoting our expertise into a five-part series of articles detailing the ins and outs of Promotional Writing. The series will cover several topics, including general techniques, suggested processes, press releases, website copy, and social media.

Promotional writing is any type of writing designed to sell or promote a product or service. It can be informational, such as a blog or newsletter, or direct as an advertisement. It can be the “About Us” section of a website, a description of a service, or a press release. Promotional writing is key to marketing any business. All writing  associated with your brand must adhere to a quality consistent with your company or it runs the risk of deteriorating your name. Although certain techniques apply across the board for promotional writing, the medium spans several formats to which the writer must cater. For our first article on the topic, we will cover the general principles and goals of promotional writing to help you represent your business.

EXECUTE YOUR GOAL

The goal of promotional writing is to connect with your target audience. Whether or not they ultimately choose to act upon the impulse you desire to impart is beyond your control. If you succeed in clearly communicating the benefits of the product or service you are promoting, readers in the market for whatever is being sold are likely to follow-through. So long as the message you intend to impart is effective and precisely conveyed to the audience, you will have done your job. Thus, it’s vital to consider the audience’s perspective in crafting any piece.

KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE

A consumer stumbles upon a piece of writing dedicated to promoting a product or service. They have the choice of reading it or not. Even if it applies to them, it doesn’t guarantee they are going to follow-through and closely examine the piece. As a promotional writer, you have to make your writing as easy to consume as possible. You must consider your target audience’s perspective and structure your piece based on how you expect your readers to consume it.

Is the piece something you can imagine someone reading at work, or is it something more dense they would read when researching a topic? How long do they have to read it? What parts would they skim? Is the piece geared more toward neophytes to the topic, or veterans seeking to enrich their knowledge? Each of these questions must be answered before you write, for they dictate the audience with which your writing must connect.

PERFECT THE STYLE

While there’s no formula for good promotional writing, there are certain generally accepted principles which apply across formats.

Direct, Concise, Targeted: Good promotional writing directly addresses a target audience with a clear, concise message. The message should be defined from the outset: this is a superior product or service. It’s important to be direct by getting to the “What” before the “Why”. The writer must target a specific audience. They must know who would read the piece and what they would be looking for. Every sentence must contribute directly to your message. The minute a reader senses something was written for the sake of taking up space, they will stop reading. Be considerate of their time. Do as much as you can with the attention they give you.

Accurate, Appealing, Persuasive: Good promotional writing accurately depicts the appeal of a product or service in a persuasive manner. Rather than resort to hyperbole, effective promotional writing allows the product to sell itself by presenting accurate, benefit-led facts. You must understand how the product or service appeals to your target audience before you sit down and write. Once the appeal is established, elaborate upon both the positive effects the product or service creates, as well as the negative effects it averts to craft a persuasive argument of why they must go out and obtain this specific product or service.

Smooth, Purposeful, Structured: Good promotional writing adheres to smooth, purposeful structure designed with the objective of creating the most efficient, enjoyable reading experience for the target audience. There are infinite ways to structure any given piece, but good structure plays into an audience’s expectation to clearly communicate points. Every sentence should directly follow the line of thinking preceding it and set-up the next point. General information and the overarching message should be front-loaded so readers who only have time for the first paragraph still understand the point of the piece.

IDENTIFY APPROPRIATE VOCABULARY

Identifying proper vocabulary for promotional writing can be a bit tricky. You don’t want to overload the reader with words they may not understand, but you also must assert your intelligence and don’t want to sound too colloquial. Acceptable vocabulary depends greatly on the target audience. Your word selection will be different if your target audience is a consumer of technology products versus if your piece was targeting professional application developers.

If you follow the guidelines above pertaining to promotional writing style, the flow of your writing should exude the intelligence you desire more than an elaborate vocabulary, which can sound pretentious when overdone.

For more techniques on vocabulary selection, check out this handy article by Writers & Artists.

CALL TO ACTION

A call to action is a statement which presents an opportunity for the audience to continue the dialogue regarding the topic, product, or company. A call to action could encourage the reader to contact the company by phone, click a link to the company’s website, follow the company on social media, share, comment, or link to another article where they can read more. A call to action is anything which feeds the audience’s desire to either continue the conversation, or take action and follow-through with whatever your desired action response is in writing the article. The goal of any promotional piece is to drive traffic to the product or service, thus a call to action is perhaps the most vital statement in the piece.

Learn more about call to action techniques by checking out this great article on the topic: How To Create a Successful Social Media Call to Action.

In our next Promotional Writing entry, we will help you out big time by creating a process with tips and tricks on structuring and revising your promotional writing.

At Mystic Media, our vast experience in strategic marketing  and application development has given us expertise on the all formats of promotional writing: from copy writing, search engine optimization, social media marketing, web design, and more. Learn more by clicking here or by contacting us by phone at 801.994.6815

What You Can Learn From Modern Communication Apps

Communications are rapidly evolving. Originally, there were grunts, then words, then letters, eventually telephones, smartphones, email, text messaging, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, What’sApp, etc. As our interactions continue to evolve, there’s no question communication applications are big business. Facebook recently purchased What’sApp for $19 billion to complement the various modes of communication they already facilitate as a social network. Due to the incredible leap in interconnectedness brought about by the internet and smartphones, the desire to consolidate different forms of communicatory transmissions has increased dramatically. The key, it would appear, to designing a great communication app is to create a functional niche market.

Let us present the age old question: if you can post a status to Facebook, why tweet? They both accomplish the same action–sending a message to no one in particular within your network, but we don’t use Facebook statuses in the same way as tweets (nor vice versa) because our understanding of the function of Twitter is different from that of Facebook. Facebook is for connecting with your peers. It’s for sharing with your friends and acquaintances. Twitter is for the more mundane, minute-to-minute thoughts–when you have something to say but no one to say it to. It is for the concise. By including parameters (a 140 character limit), turns it into a sort of game; it’s carved out its niche market. You can send text messages with pictures, but Snapchat serves a specific purpose of ensuring your communications are private. If you can use technology to exploit a new, specific path of expression, you can make big money off communication apps.

“Yo!” is perhaps the simplest communication app on the market. Instead of allowing you to send texts, or pictures, or anything specific, “Yo!” only allows for one-bit communication. If you “Yo” your friends, they receive a message, which says simply: “Yo”. It’s sort of like a more ambiguous Facebook poke, the key being the context. It is up to the receiver of the Yo to decipher the meaning of the Yo. A Yo from a potential partner means something different than a Yo from a casual friend, the same way a Yo from a friend in the room means something different from a Yo from someone in another country. Launched on April Fool’s Day, “Yo!” may seem like a joke, but it’s certainly not being treated like one–Yo! has amassed over 2 million downloads and has recently been estimated to be worth up to $10 million. In fact, many developers are working on projects built on top of the interface, including a service in Israel using the app to alert people to rocket strikes.

Pushback against the notion of an online identity has also lead to several successful innovations in communication apps, including Secret, Confide, Whisper and Yik Yak which offer users a way to communicate while hiding their identities. “This idea that you have to craft this perfect image online, that’s stressful. We want to remove that stress” says Secret’s co-founder Chrys Bader-Wechseler.

Facebook has developed their Messenger App recognizing and catering to their niche. Facebook recently made its Messenger app available via a separate download and discontinued messaging on the central Facebook mobile app, meaning you can only send Facebook messages through the Messenger app. The updated Messenger shows the user’s location under messages by default. It will also offer users the option of sharing the phone numbers in their address book and allow them to share messages with anyone on the list with a Facebook account. Facebook recognizes its niche is in reliable communication, the accuracy of your location and identity are vital to its mission. Recently profiled by the New York Times, Mark Zuckerberg (founder of Facebook) said “More than 10 billion messages a day flow through Facebook’s messaging products. But I think we basically saw that the messaging space is bigger than we’d initially realized, and that the use cases that WhatsApp and Messenger have are more different than we had thought originally. Messenger is more about chatting with friends and WhatsApp is like an SMS replacement. Those things sound similar, but when you go into the nuances of how people use it, they are both very big in different markets.”

The market of communication apps is as big as the developer wishes to make it. An innovative, well-designed communication app will catch on. As humans, we are constantly communicating everyday. If a developer can create a new, exciting avenue for people to connect, he has great chance at making a hit app.

At Mystic Media, we’re experts in all things web, mobile, application, social media and marketing. To learn more about our services, contact us today at www.mysticmediasoft.com or by phone at 801.994.6815