These Brands are Killing It on Instagram

these brand are killing it on instagram

I love finding branding and marketing inspiration on Instagram and I’m loving the platform in general these days because the user experience is a lot more enjoyable than the toxic environment on Facebook. You can find out more about how we feel about THAT whole sitch here.

In my feed, I like to see posts from a mix of different kinds of companies because, as a marketer, I’m constantly paying attention to what other marketers are doing well. If you are a marketer or a small business owner, you might know what I mean. And I’d LOVE to see what profiles you’ve been following for ideas and inspiration. You can leave a comment below or Tweet at me and I’ll check it out your favorites.

Lately, I’ve been feeling an intense amount of marketing love for a few companies in particular.

  1. Moondeli
    Moondeli makes healthy tonics that can be added to nut milk, coffee, juices, and smoothies. Their ingredients feature some of the highest quality, most potent rainforest plants like turmeric, maca, and cacao.

Their branding enforces the “alternativeness” or, shall I say, traditional kind of health products they sell. (I always think it’s funny to call ingestion of ingredients that have been known for their health properties for hundreds and hundreds of years “alternative” just because we’ve made advancement in medicine. You can have both, you know?)

With Moondeli’s branding suite, you really do feel like you’ve been pulled into a community and an experience that centers around beauty and natural health. From their logo and typography to the corresponding symbols on their different products, they’ve created something that is attractive; something that possesses all of the right elements to get their target market’s attention.

 

<<photos of packaging on my IG account>>

They invest a lot in their photography as well. They are consistent in their themes, layouts, and colors -a ton of the flatlays feature crystals with a color palette of pinks, blues, greens, and greys. It’s that kind of ethereal feel that is earthy yet coming on trend. It’s just pretty and fun to look at.

🌑💜💭✨ #energytonic ✨ #almondmilk ✨ #amethyst ✨ #intentions

A post shared by 🌕 M O O N D E L I 🌕 (@moondeli) on

 

Something else they are doing right? User generated content. They’ve created a culture where their community feels so connected to Moondeli’s product, strangers are tagging away and the company ends up with a ton of free, beautiful content to fill their Instagram feed and build their credibility. Not only that, but it also seems that the community has taken cues from the company on what the aesthetics of a photo featuring a Moondelli product should look like.

And it’s in the customer’s interest to create a photo that Moondeli might share because it might help them grow THEIR OWN audience.

See what they did there?

Stunning capture by the radiant @sidneybensimon 🙌🌞💙✨#gratitude #plantmedicine #love

A post shared by 🌕 M O O N D E L I 🌕 (@moondeli) on

 

Finally, I love that Moondeli breaks down the barrier and rids the customer of the burden of HOW IN THE HECK to use their products. They frequently give tips on on new uses and include recipes in many of their posts. There’s also a recipes page on their website. This serves the purpose of eliminating hesitation to purchase because the viewer already knows specific ways they will use the product.

Enjoy some more of Moondeli’s eye candy and check out how I used some of their products here.

  1. Ox and Otter
    Shiyana of Ox and Otter is a ceramicist who runs her entire business with just an Instagram account (over 90k followers) and a SUPER SIMPLE website that currently features all of her sold out creations. Think about that next time you get caught up opening accounts and building elaborate websites when you should be focusing on your product.

 

My favorite handmade indulgences all in one- 🌿Pottery 🌿Rings 🌿Body Care

A post shared by Shiyana (@oxandotter) on

Shiyana creates beautiful, one of a kind ceramic mugs and bowls and is a self-described Ceramic Artist Glaze Witch. What’s fun about Ox and Otter is that you are following HER -the creator of the beautiful pieces that you might someday get to purchase if you can catch a mug in your cart before they all sell out. Since you see her often, posing with her Black Wave and Midnight Rose works of art that happen to hold coffee, you feel a much stronger connection with the brand. It’s that feeling of friendship that social media is so capable of creating between a person and their stranger-followers.

Ox and Otter has a look that users are clearly responding to, so Shiyana is smart to focus on creating variations of the same kind of design, “milking” what is already working for her.

One thing that I love most about Shiyana’s content is the amount of effort she puts into her photoshoots. Rest assured, there WILL BE color coordinated nail polish that compliments the mug on display and everything from her makeup and clothes to the background reinforces the branding. Really, it’s just her taste that is very unique, beautiful, and focused.

 

  1. Liberated Heart
    With the ultimate summer/festival wear, Liberated Heart is also tapping into the witchy, celestial vibe that Moondeli and Ox and Otter have done so well. They operate mainly between their Instagram Account and website.

When the brand launched in 2013, it gained a cult following and became a  leader in festival fashion and, after that an additional surge in attention when model Candace Swanepoel was photographed wearing one of their dresses. Then, the company focused on engaging the influx of commenters on their Instagram photos, which really paid off for them.

I think that Liberated Heart manages their ratio of content expertly. It’s a good mix of straight product promotion to sell specific items for their catalog and themes like desert scenes, palm trees, beach frolicking that support the branding so well.

Weekend setup vibes ✨✨✨ @lisadanielle__

A post shared by LIBERATED HEART (@liberatedheart) on

 

  1. Room Service Vintage
    I used to shop at Room Service for most of my furniture and a lot of my decor during the time I lived in Austin, Texas. I continued following them for years after I moved because I love to torture myself with vintage steals that I can never have because they don’t ship.

Room Service uses their Instagram account to sell the pieces they post by allowing a 2 hour hold on items. They even keep the posts updated with their “sold” status and it obviously works well for them.

Cherry Blossom Pink Recliner with Cane sides, 42″ t x 25″ w x 28″ d, $149.00 -SOLD-

A post shared by Room Service Austin, Texas (@roomservicevintage) on

Their photos aren’t that fancy and there aren’t any posts created “just for looks” -this is a purely functional account. It simply a catalog and they get enough high quality pieces in to be able to develop leads on Instagram.

It’s these little tricks that can work for small business -something you might want to keep in mind if you deal with one-of-a-kind retail.

 

Do you have any favorite non-major brands that you follow on Instagram for inspiration? I’d love to know what you are paying attention to. Tweet at me or respond in the comments below.

My Digital Marketing Toolbox- Updated for 2017

If you want to see what was on my list last year, check out My Social Media Management Toolbox: 10 Tools That Will Upgrade Your Marketing Game.

digital marketing toolbox

Social media management is only a tiny part of what I do for Eazl and, for that reason, I’m always looking for new tools, apps, and knowledge that will make me more productive and effective with online marketing initiatives. Last year, I put together a list of the tools I use regularly for social media management and I’ve changed the way I do things since then so I thought I’d update my toolbox for you.*

One thing you’ll notice from the list I put together below is that we’ve been investing heavily in Instagram, at least compared to January 2016. I’ve planned this out for a couple of reasons: our work is highly visual so it fits well there and I enjoy using the platform, which keeps my use consistent.

  1. Social Media Follower Management App
    The app that I use is currently no longer in the marketplace, but find any free app that allows you to see recent unfollowers and followers so you can easily manage your Instagram and Twitter accounts (including catching those annoying users who follow only to receive a follow back and then promptly unfollow).

Apps like this are such a time saver and they enable growth on social media accounts by keeping the number of accounts you follow reasonable and providing analytics on the growth of your account. Plus, it’s super convenient that you can use it on your mobile device!

Remember to try to only follow accounts that are actually relevant with content you actually want to see.

2. Repost It! App for Instagram
I’ve been using this app for a few months now and I really like it. It’s great for sharing posts in between accounts. In our case, I’ll sometimes cross promote between my personal account and the Eazl account.

3. Boomerang App
I love the new dynamic that Boomerang brings to Instagram! I use this app most often when we’re doing something out and about for Eazl, like filming or traveling. I’d like to start featuring more people in my Boomerang posts but haven’t worked it into my process yet.

4. Eventbrite Organizer App
We don’t host as many events as we used to and I’d like to change that as we move into the second quarter of 2017. The organizer app is great for keeping an eye on sign ups while traveling or during a heavily scheduled week. I really don’t like having to log into my account every time I want to check our RSVP numbers.

5. Instagram Stories
I am loving Instagram stories (especially because I REALLY don’t like Snapchat…I REFUSE to become a Snapchatter) and it’s the perfect way to get your content prioritized over other users’ content. It’s kind of like a reminder…”Hey, remember us? You followed us on Instagram a while back and you should come check out what we’ve been posting lately.”

I also like how casual Instagram Stories can be. It’s really about showing users what you are experiencing at the moment and doesn’t need to be anything fancy, however, I recently saw a fun, interactive, and thoroughly planned out campaign that a retailer published via Instagram Stories and it inspired me to think outside of the box in the future.

6. Likestagram
Now, before you go “poo-pooing” bots, they are the future so you better get used to them. With Likestagram, you can target the bot to like posts with hashtags of your choice. That way, you’re bringing in new views to your profile from users that are relevant at a higher rate than would be humanly possible otherwise.

Of course, you want to pair your Instagram growth through Likestagram with your traditional digital marketing efforts and make sure you have good and consistent content to post.

I like to go back to Likestagram and edit my hashtags to reflect my three most recent posts so visitors feel like they are in the right place when they arrive after the bot has called their attention to us.

7. Facebook Retargeting Pixel
I’ve been building my pixel power on Facebook for about a year now and the audiences I’ve created with my pixel a finally becoming large enough to use in my retargeting campaigns.

The retargeting pixel, in my opinion, is the only feature that makes Facebook actually useful to businesses. They’re lucky they have that because I would otherwise drop Facebook from my marketing mix without a second thought about it.

I trust Mark Zuckerberg about as far as I can throw him. If you aren’t from the west, that means I think he’s super shady. 

I know, Instagram is now owned by Facebook and I am using that platform a lot…it just doesn’t have that Zuckerberg stink of a platform that was originally launched to rate women’s appearance on college campuses (barf).

  1. Social Media Examiner
    I’ve actually followed Social Media Examiner since it started and I started social media management. That was around 2010. I have yet to find another source for up to date content about social media marketing that is as good or as useful as they are. So, I continue to use it as the main source for staying up to date with the social media bit of digital marketing.

I don’t have as much time as I used to so I skip to only the most relevant posts for my use case and I use Feedly so all of my news is in one place.

*Note that I still use all of the tools mentioned on last year’s post except for Crowdfire (that one didn’t stick).

See any tools that you love that I’ve now failed to mention twice in my lists? Leave a comment below!

You can connect with Ludell Jones on LinkedIn, Twitter, or in the private marketing group she manages.

eazl-marketing-training

From Social Media Examiner: How to Create a Facebook Messenger Chatbot

facebook messenger chatbot

“Does your business want to do more with Facebook Messenger?

Interested in using a chatbot for customer service and marketing?

Facebook Messenger chatbots can help your followers get answers to frequently asked questions and more.

In this article, you’ll discover how to set up a Facebook Messenger chatbot for your business.”

facebook bot

successful content

Learn how to set up a Twitter bot here.

How to Create a Pinned Lead Generation Card for a Twitter Profile

In this week’s Brain Boost, I’m going to show you how to create a pinned lead generation card for a Twitter profile.

This is a Brain Boost that is celebrating marketing month here at Eazl, which is about the release of version 4.0 of Eazl’s Growth Hacking Masterclass.

Today, what we’re going to talk about is how you can create a lead generation Tweet with Twitter. 

This is fun it’s easy and it kind of will start to get you in the world of Twitter for advertising.

Step 1
What you’re going to do is go to the ads portion of Twitter.

Pinned Lead Generation Card

 

Now, go to Creatives and then click “Create Card”.

Pinned Lead Generation Card

Then, create a lead generation card.

Pinned Lead Generation Card

Pinned Lead Generation Card

Step 2
Fill out the card. You’re going to want to create a headline, create a call-to-action, create a URL –that’s your destination URL for when people click the card– and then you’re also going to need to create a little image that’s 800 by 200 pixels wide and then accept the terms and then create your card.

Hint: If you are having trouble uploading your image, try disabling your ad blocker.

Pinned Lead Generation Card

Step 3
Once you have your card, you want to create a Tweet that’s pretty well crafted. Hopefully, with some hashtags and things that are appropriate. And then create a Tweet around that card.

Pinned Lead Generation Card

Pinned Lead Generation Card

Now, go to your profile and then find that Tweet. You’re going to open that Tweet up and then, in the lower right hand corner, you can drop down and you can pin that Tweet to your Twitter profile.

Pinned Lead Generation Card

Now, what you have is a pinned Tweet at the top of your profile that is a lead generation card.

Pinned Lead Generation Card

 

Join us for another Brain Boost next week at 10 a.m. Pacific Time.

3 Ways to Use Twitter Analytics

In this week’s Brain Boost: three ways to use Twitter analytics.

This is a special Brain Boost. It’s part of marketing month here at Eazl, where we’re celebrating the release of Growth Hacking 4.0 and, in this BrainBoost, we’re going to talk about 3 ways that you can use analytics for Twitter.

The first way is just go to analytics.twitter.com and you’re goingto find out how you can basically look at the success of your content and your Tweets. This is pretty simple. You can see things like which Tweets got the most reach, likes, etc.

One thing that I would advise to you is that the data suggests that the number one predictor for growth is engagement. You can sort your tweets by engagement. That’s a pretty easy way to see which Tweets are getting the most engagement.

You might want to write content about that or Tweet more about that.

Those are ways that you can use that part of the analytics suite.

Now, when you go over to the audience part of your Twitter analytics, you can find, first, that you’re going to be basically looking at your followers and there are a couple things that you can find out about your followers.

You can find out what their top interests are and something that I like is their location. I particularly like the regions versus the countries because I think it’s more interesting to see which regions are following you, especially if you’re a salesperson and you’re wondering, “Where should I put my ads?”

Well, those regions might be a good place to put your ads.

The third thing that I would advise you on is that you can find interesting things when you move to your organic audience. There’s this little filter where you can shift from your followers to your organic audience and these are people who have actually engaged with your content.

When we switch to that audience,  you get a more sophisticated view things like their financial status and stuff like that.

So, basically, this is interesting because Twitter is incentivizing you to create engagement more than build a following because you get more data about the people who engage with your content than you do just about people who follow you.

If you are ever interested, one thing you can do here is you can compare other audiences on Twitter with your audience so that you can kind of see what the baseline is and then you can judge how you’re doing. You can also do this for a little bit of prospecting about which interest groups there are onTwitter and what they look like.

Come back next week for another Brain Boost at 10 a.m. Pacific Time on the Eazl YouTube channel.

Which Social Media Platform Should You Focus on for Your Business?

social media quiz

We created this quiz so you can determine which social media platform you should focus on for your business.

The quiz was developed based on real research about social media users and social media advertising data as well as our on-staff knowledge regarding use cases and best practices. To create the quiz and the outcomes, we considered demographics, education level, existing marketing assets, time and money budgeting, and on-staff skills.

Results are determined by tallying totals within 6 of the most use social media platforms –Snapchat, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest– and you should arrive at a suggestion for focus that works best for the needs and details you have given throughout the quiz.

Let us know what your results are in the comments below + what you’re working on so we can double check the suggestions given and maybe provide some additional guidance.

Share this quiz with other entrepreneurs!

From Forbes: How to Leverage Snapchat for Business

snapchat for business

“Many have scoffed at the notion of Snapchat seriously entering the business sphere. How could a self-destructing picture and video messaging app be profitable?

With over 150 million active users and 10 billion daily video views, Snapchat is now overtaking both Twitter and Facebook in popularity.

The mobile messaging app, currently valued at $20 billion, is rapidly becoming the go-to platform for millennials. More than 60% of U.S. 13 to 34-year-old smartphone users are Snapchatters, and their daily video views are tripling every 3 months.

So how exactly do you get started?”

eazl read more

Twitter Bots, Ocean Diversity, and Support for Entrepreneurship in Washington

In this week’s Brain Boost: twitter bots, ocean diversity, and support for entrepreneurship in Washington.

Ocean diversity
Dr. Shane Gero, a Canadian marine biologist, has been studying whales for years and he and his team have found out that there are around 80 clans of sperm whales in the oceans around the world and each clan has their own unique habits and language.

twitter bots

However, within each clan, Gero has found individual sperm whales from those clans move regularly to other clans. This is the first time diversity has been seen beyond humans.

It’s interesting to see that diversity has such a deep part of sperm whale behavior around the world. You can read more about how these whales move between clans and families over the course of their lifetime here.

Twitter bots
After some rough months, Twitter has released some interesting new tools and the most interesting of them is the ability to fairly easily create your own Twitter bot without using any code. For example, you can visit twitter.com/hundredzeros. This is a Twitter bot that automatically tweets whenever a new free kindle ebook is published.

If you’re interested in creating your own Twitter bots, I encourage you to do so. It will take you less than 10 minutes. Amit at Digital Inspiration has created a step-by-step YouTube tutorial and a tool that you can use to create a bot from your account or create a new bot.

I would keep an eye on automation and social media platforms. How much are platforms like Instagram, Twitter, etc. going to allow bots to interact with human users?

Support for entrepreneurship in Washington
Lawmakers in Washington DC are finally starting to talk about the need for policies that support entrepreneurs and innovators. This week, Hillary Clinton launched an initiative on technology and innovation and, among the many points made in the initiative,it makes it easier for technological innovations like Uber and Airbnb to overcome the burden of outdated regulation.

It also supports the open Internet and provides direct support for entrepreneurs and incubators all over the United States –not just in Silicon Valley.

At Eazl, we support civic leaders who believe investments in entrepreneurship and innovation are critical for the future and for the financial prosperity of the next generation.

 

If you like this post, check out our new episode of What’s Next on YouTube. In this episode, we take a trip to Edmonton, Canada to see what’s happening in the world of innovation.

 

Regulation Coming for Social Media? #MoreThanMean

In this update, you’re going to learn about a conversation that happening which might determine the future of how people interact on social media.

More Than Mean
Less than two weeks ago, two female sports reporters recorded a video with the hashtag #morethanmean, where men read mean tweets that had been sent to the reporters by Twitter users. The tweets that the men read quickly became shockingly violent.

more than mean

It turns out that these female journalists have to deal with threats of harm and sexual violence on social media on a daily basis and much of this violence speech is targeted at females. In fact, Eric Roberts, who is professor emeritus of computer science at StanfordUniversity, pointed out that extremists of all kinds are using the Internet as a vehicle for disseminating hate speech at an exponential rate.

You can watch the video of the men reading these mean tweets here:

Celebrities block Twitter users
Just a few days after the More Than Mean video was published, a wave of celebrities and politicians began blocking hundreds of users on Twitter for various reasons, which gave rise to the hashtag #Iwasblockedfor.

more than mean

Many people were posting funny reasons why they were blocked by people on Twitter, but this raises a question for digital entrepreneurs and social media users. Currently, there are no laws regulating the use of violent speech online. In fact, one journalist received multiple death threats and when she took these death threats that were sent via email to law enforcement, the police officers didn’t even know what Twitter was, which raises the question, “What is next?”

Twitter says they’re always looking for ways to make their service better and Facebook says they have a system for reporting abuse. Now, Facebook is making new users give Facebook their phone number in order to start accounts.At Eazl, we’re watching this space very closely to see how legislators balance this as a push for less anonymity on the web and protecting people who have received threats of violence in cyberspace.

 

What’s your take? Should platforms try to ban IP addresses of users who regularly publish violent messages? How do you handle trolls online? We’d love to hear in the comments below.

 

Tay the AI Chatbot, Algorithmic Social Media, Pinterest Video Ads, and a new AMA

Tay the AI Chatbot
Tay is an artificially intelligent chatbot developed by the teams at Microsoft and Bing. It has a Twitter profile and two other social media profiles.

Tay the AI chatbot twitter account

The way this works is that it uses machine learning to learn from its conversations with humans, however, within 24 hours of launching on Twitter, people had figured out how to make it racist and hateful so Tay the AI chatbot had to be put to “sleep” for while engineers worked on improveTwitter profile.

it is at twitter.com/tayandyou or www.tay.ai.

Algorithmic Social Media
Twitter and Instagram are both moving towards algorithmic feeds. This is more like the Facebook news feed. They’re moving away from chronologically ordered posts.

What’s happened here is that they’ve both developed algorithms that are similar to Facebook’s news feed and what it does is prioritize items that the algorithms believe are most important to you based on data about your relationships and your interests.

The concern with regular users is that celebrities and large brands will get prioritized on the network because they’ll get more engagement instead of, for example, their friends.

Pinterest Video Ads
Pinterest has rolled out video ads so now, when users are scrolling on Pinterest, they can see scroll activated video ads.

These are proving especially useful for big retail brands and also e-commerce shops. Companies like L’oreal and Hershey’s have been reporting big wins with this new advertising format.

Social Media AMA
On April 5th, Ludell Jones, who is Eazl’s Marketing Director, hosted a free AMA –or Ask Me Anything. During the event, she fielded questions about social media management, virtual HR and outsourcing, and social media advertising.

You can check out the archive here and stay updated on any future events by subscribing here.

 

What are your top stories on innovation in business this week? Let us know in the comments below or over on our Facebook page.