I recently got out my old bike. It’s a Schwinn, cruiser type, with an old basket and a cute bell.
I expected it to perform like it had every other time I got it out of the garage. Without giving much thought to it, I assumed the tires were full of air, that the brakes would be functional and that the old bell on the handlebars would announce me as I cruised down the trail.
You know how this is going to end.
Without all the details: Tires . . . flat. Valve stem. . .cracked and leaking. Brakes . . . very little. Bell . . . well that was the only bright spot. These discovered defects were over two bike rides on two hot days — of course all my husband’s fault, so now he’s in trouble too.
Was it naïve of me to think that a bike I bought in 2000 for $99 would still be a trusted and reliable friend in 2017? I’ve never had it looked at by a professional. I have added some air to the tires . . . because heck, I don’t ride more than a few times a summer, what could go wrong?
These series of events got me thinking about how not only personal relationships need attention, tune-ups, some love and understanding, but also companies and businesses that use marketing tactics to drive business through the door, to educate, and to create top-of-mind awareness.
Like my bike, you can’t just buy it and let it sit. You can’t put up a website and wipe your hands and say it’s done. Social media and branding need constant attention. Decisions about marketing campaigns, updating the look of your company and even reinventing what it is you do and how you do it — happens over time as a result of constant listening, research and time spent contemplating “what if.”
I’ve been married 35 years. I still have to be reminded to make that extra effort, to be thoughtful, or to suggest a new restaurant.
It would be easier to (buy a bike, create a logo, sign the wedding license) once and be done. But like my bike – a painless audit at the beginning of my bike riding season would save a lot of back and forth to the bike shop, money and blame. I’m not a marriage counselor, but if you need a marketing audit, I can help you there — as long as I can fly or drive to visit with you about it.
I may be biased, but some of my favorite social media accounts are run by the Denver Broncos.
The NFL and its teams are all spread out across social media platforms, utilizing Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even Snapchat. Social media allows NFL teams to engage their fans on a daily basis, providing footage of practice that day, interviews with players, interviews with coaches, and more. More than ever, fans know what is going on with their favorite team in real time. Because the NFL teams use social media in this way, the fans feel involved and more invested in their team. They even have the opportunity to engage with their favorite players on a personal level.
All of this leads to increased engagement from their fans. Today, when people watch TV, they are often also on their smartphone, tablet, or computer. Being on social media allows the NFL to capture their attention outside of just the television.
Here’s what I love about the Broncos’ social media accounts.
They know how to use their platforms correctly.
Often, social media users think platforms are interchangeable, but they really aren’t. People use different platforms for different reasons. Facebook is still king of social media, but Twitter and Instagram are growing in importance, and from a branding perspective, Snapchat can be pretty invaluable. While the Broncos sometimes share the same posts across different platforms, each platform also has unique content. This is important because having different content on different platforms ensures that your followers are following you everywhere. It provides different angles to your brand.
They focus on their people.
Fans care about the players on the team, and the Broncos do a good job of focusing on their players through their various platforms. They share articles and photos about the players and coaches. And the Broncos don’t only focus on current players, but players from the Broncos’ rich history, like John Elway and Coach Kubiak back in his playing days. They share every aspect of the team – including the mascot and the cheerleaders.
This area is where the Broncos’ Instagram and Snapchat shine. They show-off the unique personality of their players, like Von Miller’s unique style and Emmanuel Sanders’ dedication to the fans. It’s especially great when they feature the fans – making them a part of the Broncos team as well. Their Snapchat stories show off daily life for the Broncos. They snap the players at practice, and interview them and the coaches. They have players “take over” the platform, giving their feed a shot of personality. Both of these platforms are great ways to engage their audience, especially their younger fans.
They are all about their brand, and make updates where they’re needed.
Of course, if you look at the page, Broncos blue and orange is everywhere. They tout the history of the organization. But even more interesting now is their creation of a new hashtag. The Broncos used the #UnitedinOrange in 2015 and before that, but they have a new hashtag out – #Horsepower. To me, this hashtag suggests a reinvigorating of the brand. They already have unity with their fans – now they’re about moving into the future. With #UnitedinOrange, the Broncos were gathering strength. Now they’re on the move, and so the brand has to be as well. The Broncos demonstrate that it’s important to evaluate your messaging, and make sure it’s still what you want to be projecting.
Their content is regular and frequent.
The Broncos know how to give hungry fans what they want – more and more information about players, upcoming games, and strategies. Each account posts several times a day, and the content is relevant. They live-tweet/post during games, ensuring that fans who aren’t able to make it to a television can still participate and know what is going on. They also post a lot of video – showing incredible plays and what is going on in practice. Because they are posting frequently about what their fans care about, the Broncos are able to drive a lot of engagement on each post.
There’s a lot to learn from the Broncos and their social media accounts, especially regarding the specific use of social media platforms. Consider their social media playbook, run through a few plays, and you too can be a social media champion.
Go Broncos! Kirsten Queen, Project Manager at Jet Marketing
Kirsten is proud to wear that #18 jersey, and has her fingers crossed for a great season for the Denver Broncos.
There is a lot of talk surrounding the changes that Instagram is making to their algorithms and advertising. We aren’t sure yet how those changes are going to affect how we use Instagram as a marketing tool, but for now, let’s get back to the basics of simply engaging your customers and perpetuating genuine interest in your brand.
The thing about Instagram that isn’t changing is that it is an opt-in marketing tool that isn’t perceived by users to be primarily marketing. Twice as many Instagram users regularly engage with brands than Facebook users. It is also one of the few social media platforms where it is possible to create awareness for free, for now.
Since 2012, Instagram has had a 115% increase in organic (without paid ads) marketing reach, while Facebook has had a 63% decrease. Instagram also has 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook.
One last statistic – only 38% of marketers are using Instagram, while 93% use Facebook. So now is the time to jump on board.
1. Give them a reason.
Give your audience a reason to follow, like and share. There are a few ways to do this. To really generate activity – incentives are key. Prizes work wonders. It gives people a reason to follow your brand and share your posts.
As a user, having your post re-posted is like winning a gold medal. By reposting user photos, you are further engaging them and increasing brand loyalty as well as giving others reason to use your hashtag when posting.
2. Have relatable and creative content.
Humor and inspiration are two popular methods. Exceptionally beautiful or unique photos will generate shares as well. Users will tag their friends and will organically grow your following.
Have a consistent look when possible and of course use images that appeal to your audience. Find a way to make everyday content artsy – that is the fun part.
Yes, they might be overused and somewhat obnoxious when there are 30 (this is the maximum) for one post. But they are important for being searchable and to drive engagement. Choose a unique hashtag to be your own that is as simple and as fitting as possible.
It is also important to use other relevant hashtags on your posts to make your post show up in searches – generating followers. Posts with 11 or more hashtags statistically get the most engagement.
4. Make the most of your posts.
Send your Instagram posts to your other social media platforms to get maximum engagement out of each photo. Be sure to post on the weekends – the most effective days to post are Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Lastly, be sure to have a link in your bio section to drive your audience to your target content.
These are just the basics – the possibilities are certainly endless on Instagram. Get creative and take advantage of this free platform while it is still free.