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2 results returned for "Instagram"

Wednesday, Dec 21st, 2016

Lizzie Healy

8 Reasons Your Business Should Be Going Live On Instagram

Instagram, continuing their march to meticulously rip off the best elements of their competitor's social media platforms, has been rapidly rolling out "new" features that look and feel eerily familiar. As if following a social media recipe for success, they've added a pinch of Snapchat here, a dash of Pinterest there, and a heaping spoonful of Periscope to top it off. The resulting Frankenstein social media platform is actually pretty incredible, and users are eating it up. Last week, Instagram announced that it had crossed over the milestone 600 million users, acquiring 100 million new users in the past month. With new users flocking to the app, and the introduction of features like Instagram Live, businesses have an amazing opportunity to build a closer, more authentic relationship with their followers.

  1. It's Easy to Use

  2. To start using Instagram Live, simply swipe right from your feed to open the camera and tap "Start Live Video" to begin sharing. Instagram sends notifications to specific followers, based on their algorithm for who would be most interested, to alert them that you are going Live. The word LIVE will also appear below your image in stories.

  3. It's Scarce

  4. Because FOMO is real (and effective for marketing), the Live video will only be viewable while streaming is in progress and disappear immediately after. Do. Not. Forget. To. Promote. Drop hints and reminders to followers to let them know when you will be Live, with incentives for them to follow. Think: giveaways, special announcements, relevant and interesting content. Ask users to turn on notifications, which will ensure they are alerted when you go Live, so they Don't Miss Out! Because once the cast is over, it's gone forever. FOMO is a marketer's best friend.

  5. It's Responsive

  6. Have you ever been on a dance floor when a bad song comes on, and everyone decides it's a good time to leave and refill their drinks? This is the same concept as the number on the top right of your screen, which shows how many people are tuning in or tuning out of the broadcast. You can immediately judge which content works and which sends people running for another drink by the number going up or down. This makes catering content to your audience even simpler because you can judge it in real time.

  7. It's Direct Access to Consumers

  8. Your Live broadcast can last for up to an hour, during which viewers can heart or comment on the video in real time. Instagram let's you report any internet trolls with just a click, or turn off comments all together (though this would ruin much of the marketing benefits of the broadcast). During the broadcast, businesses can provide details about pricing, availability, special features, and respond to questions as viewers ask them. Live allows businesses to get direct feedback from viewers on products and services, just by swiping and asking.

  9. It's Authentic

  10. You've heard it over and over again. Consumers respond to marketing that is authentic, real, and personable. They can spot a fake from a mile away. With Instagram live being filmed on the fly, it's your opportunity to say f%$k it, do it live! As much as you can and should plan your cast ahead of time, the value in going Live is that it's a genuine, unedited look behind the scenes. Be real, share personal stories, burn food. That's why people tune in to watch.

  11. It's Branded

  12. Going Live on Instagram is an incredible opportunity to showcase your brand. Your brand reflects the core values of your company, and what better way to convey these than through behind the scenes looks at how products are made, introducing team members, and showing off the culture that makes your company so unique. There's a reason research is predicting that 75 percent of all data will be video by 2020. It allows you to go beyond a flat image and convey your message through visual and audio content all at once. Dance to your own jingle, drink from a mug branded with your logo, show off all the benefits of your product or service in real life situations. The possibilities are endless.

  13. It's Engaging

  14. Engage with customers through an interactive Q & A, where you can receive and respond to viewer's questions in real time. Ask questions directly to viewers about what they like, don't like, and want to see more or less of. The ability to pin comments is an amazing hack by Instagram that can be used in a few different ways. Pin questions you ask, questions and comments being posed by viewers, or just add a brief description about what you're doing so viewers just tuning in can be quickly caught up to speed.

  15. It's Fun

  16. The best part about Instagram Live is that it's fun. So your business should be having fun with your Live stream. Show a cooking class. Mix up your favorite drink. Do a cosmetics tutorial. Demo a new product. Teach a fitness class. Preview a new track. Make you video content something that is appealing to your demographics, with tips that benefit viewers and incentivize them to keep tuning in. Rule of thumb: if you're having fun, your viewers will too.

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

Lizzie Healy

Transformation Tuesday: Instagram's New Look Revealed

Transformation Tuesday
Who doesn't love a good transformation story? The anticipation, the big reveal, and finally the emotional, often tearful, response. Last week, Instagram unveiled a fresh version of itself. New and improved, and ready for the world to praise the big transformation. Instead, the new look was met with an onslaught of internet backlash, including harsh memes and GIFs mocking the "update", and pleas for Instagram to return to it's old look. The update to the popular social media app consisted of an overhaul of the apps entire visual experience, with a new colorful icon and simplified black and white UI design. If the reveal had occurred on a reality TV show, the app would most certainty have been voted off the island. But why did people react so poorly? Was it just people's natural inclination to reject change, or did Instagram take a major misstep in their design judgment? We took a closer look at the big transformation to determine exactly why this response occurred and hopefully help you avoid the same negative response when updating your brand's appearance.

The Before:
Teddy bear brown leather, a rainbow stripe, and a nod to an ancient relic from a humbler time: the traditional camera. It was one of the most instantly recognizable, albeit uniquely intricate logos in tech. Instagram felt the now vintage logo was "not reflective of the community," so they set to work analyzing the successful elements of the original logo and determining a way they could carry those popular elements over to a new and better logo. The goal was a more modern design, and Instagram hoped the brighter, flatter alternative would be a slam dunk.

The After:
The now controversial design reflects a more modern aesthetic. It incorporates a simple, flat design that a number of other popular apps already feature (without objection). Reimagining the rainbow stripe from the old logo inspired the 1995 Microsoft PowerPoint gradient. Efforts to transition the logo into a more flexible, scalable icon encouraged the simple white camera outline, vaguely reminiscent of a placemat, plate, and accompanying cup. Instagram also updated the dashboard design to a subdued black and white palette with simple flat buttons to emphasize the content featured on the app. Stripping away the color and noise of the app's UI would allow people's (and advertiser's) content to take the lead as the focal point of the app.

The Response:
But why was it a flop? While the simple, black and white interface was met with minimal protests, the reveal of the app's new icon spurred outrage. The purple, pink, orange, and yellow gradient that makes up the new abstract logo design is a far cry from the app's traditionally realistic picture of a camera, and many credit this extreme revision as being the cause of the backlash. While numerous app logos feature abstract icons, for the past five years Instagram's literal depiction of a camera has been a staple of your phones landscape. Instagram predicted that the new logo, described by many as an "abomination" and a "travesty," would be met with a dramatic response initially. They argued that how the app aged was a more relevant factor to consider overall. Though I feel this is a logical theory, I have to agree with the angry mob's persecution of the design. While the simple white camera outline is not offensive to me, I take major issue with the Lisa Frank-esque gradient. Take a quick scan of the other icons on your phone, do any of them induce a slight burning feeling in your retinas? Do they evoke memories of your first trip to the nail salon, where you thought, "UGH I can't choose just ONE color, why not get them all?" It's both greedy and lazy. While any major change to an app with this much popularity probably would have been met with some level of rejection, I can't help but think that skipping the neon water color spill and sticking with one distinct, color to brand the app with would have avoided a week of angry tweets and (hilarious) memes. Only time will tell if Instagram gets the last laugh on this one.