Most online-savvy businesses today agree about the benefits of marketing their business on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn. But what about the less obvious platforms?
It’s undeniable – Instagram, Snapchat and Vine are quickly becoming must-have apps among the young and not-so-young alike, and it might surprise you to see how effectively some brands are using these primarily visual channels to boost their business.
Boasting 200 million active users (1.6 million of which are Aussies), Instagram is a huge and largely untapped resource for businesses and almost any type of business can benefit from using Instagram as part of their marketing strategy. Take a look at how ice cream giants Ben & Jerry’s used Instagram to advertise a new flavour.
1.07 million Aussies have fallen for Snapchat, the share-n-disappear photo & video app, and it looks like it could become a popular marketing tool, too. New York City yoghurt shop 16 Handles recently used the platform for a promotion, in which users would send a photo of themselves tasting a yoghurt flavour to the 16 Handles Snapchat account, and they would automatically be sent a coupon for immediate use. The catch was that customers had to wait until it was time to pay before they could open their Snapchat coupon – if they opened it up too early, it would be gone in 10 seconds, before they had time to use it!
Vine, Twitter’s precursor to Instagram video, has remained one of the most downloaded free apps on the iTunes store since its release in 2012, and it’s proven to be an amazing video sharing tool for individuals and businesses alike. With just 6 seconds to wow your followers, Vine taps into our tendency towards distraction and many businesses have found it to be a creative way to engage potential customers. Still not convinced? Check out how these companies have been taking advantage of Vine.
So, how can you use these three channels for your business?
B2B marketers can follow potential clients and engage with their posts. The great thing about these three platforms is that you can be creative, and unlike LinkedIn, for example, your pictures and videos don’t necessarily always have to be relevant to your business. It’s also a good idea to post offers exclusively for users of that particular platform (e.g. 20% off one of your products or services), which will build loyalty and boost your audience.
B2C marketers have it the easiest – Instagram, Snapchat and Vine are great tools for showing off your products. Not only can you post pictures and videos of new products, but you could encourage your followers to take (or send, in the case of Snapchat) a photo or video of themselves with your product and tag your business. A lot of businesses have also found this to be a fun and creative way to stage competitions.
If your B2C business tends to offer more services than products (e.g. a hairdresser or landscaper) these platforms can be used to show off the finished result, before and afters, and photos/videos of your happy customers.
Remember, the most important thing with these platforms is to not take yourself and your business too seriously. Creative content will get you likes and followers, so take the opportunity to let loose a little and have some fun.