Greetings from sunny LA! I am attending one of 3 Social Media Week Conferences (SMW) around the world right now with the others being hosted in Milan and Mexico City. SMW is a leading news platform and worldwide conference that curates and shares the best ideas, innovations, and insights into how social media and technology are changing business, society, and culture around the world. I’m very excited to be here to absorb all I can and meet with industry leaders and peers.
To launch the week here in LA, Jim Squires, Director of Marketing Operations at Instagram, kicked off the day with a great keynote about the platform that is taking the world by storm and turning their 400 million users into content creators as the world’s moments are being captured and shared. As Tody Daniels, Co-Founder and CEO of Crowdcentric & Founder of SMW commented during his introduction of Squires, “Instagram offered a new way to connect we hadn’t seen before.”
Here are the 5 things I learned about Instagram at SMW today and why you should be paying attention to this platform:
- 60% of Instagram users say they discover products and/or businesses on Instagram and 75% of them take action. That means approximately 180 million users are making purchases or engaging with new businesses through this platform. @jessronagrooming, @salesforce, and @jellyskateboards are great examples of small and large companies that have benefited from how they engaged with consumers.
- Instagram is unveiling new business tools in July with business profiles, which will help consumers find your profile and who you are with greater ease than currently. Brands can choose how customers can get in touch whether it’s by calling, texting, or emailing through the tap of a contact button that features directions as well.
- Instagram will also launch Business Insights and Promote which will run ads natively on the platform, and according to Squires, “with a few taps, anyone can harness the ad platform.” Insights will provide more actionable information about who their followers are and which posts resonate better than others. Promote allows users to turn-well-performing, organic posts into ads right from the app which will help them to connect with even more customers. All you need to do is take a well-performing post and add a button to create a CTA right from your phone. Learn more from this SMW article. These new additions were built after talking with and seeking recommendations from 100’s of businesses too.
- Harnessing the power of Instagram’s paid advertising can be very rewarding. It took 3 years to come to fruition that started with a handful of founders experimenting with it, and now there are over 200k advertisers on the platform.
- If you are considering a multi-channel strategy,
- Look first at business objectives (likes and follows aren’t an objective itself).
- Think about mindset, reach, mix ,and match.
- Facebook’s niche is personal discovery, while Instagram is all about visual inspiration.
- Focus on content and production as people seek inspiration. You have a 3-second audition to establish a connection and communicate a message.
- Don’t be afraid to experiment and take risks!
- Content runs the gamut from curated to original and this includes existing content, content partnership, in-house production, original/commissioned content.
Instagram in the future:
- They will continue to develop ways to provide more support for businesses on the platform.
- There will be more ways to inspire creativity through tools like hyperlapse and grassroots.
- Overall discovery of content will continue to evolve through search/explore, trending places/hashtags, and that discovery area will be a big investment for us.
Stay tuned for more updates about my SMW experience, and always reach out to Anvil if you want us to take your social media presence and strategy to the next level!