How many times have you liked a post by a company or a brand you follow, commented on it, or asked a question – and received no reply? I have, many many times. And I don’t like it. In today’s world, where it’s very hard to keep someone’s attention for more than a couple of seconds, we should appreciate fans and friends who actually take the time to engage with us, showing us that they appreciate the post, or are interested to find out more about it. That’s why next time when someone comments on your post, take the time to say thank you and respond back.
What’s the purpose of being on social media, if we don’t want to be social? That was our belief at LA76 since the very beginning, and when I saw this quote by Ryan Bonnici, I immediately adopted it! We should always keep it present.
The ultimate goal of social media is to be just that – social – and we want to hear from our audience, learn what they like and dislike, and keep creating cool stuff for them to enjoy. Ryan Bonnici, senior director of global marketing at HubSpot
If you love Meerkat and Periscope, but wish both of these apps would offer more functionalities than ‘just’ live streaming, try Katch! Katch enables you to easily record, permanently archive and automatically publish your broadcasts from either of the apps with one tweet.
How Katch works:
– Sign into Katch.me and connect it to your Meerkat or Periscope accounts (or both)
– Open your favorite live streaming app
– Add #katch hashtag to your title
– Tap the Twitter icon so Katch can see your stream
– Katch starts recording your stream, including your comments and hearts
– After you end your broadcast, @KatchHQ will send you a link on Twitter
– Tap on the link to view your replay
– You can play, fast forward and rewind your video
– You can also view and scroll through all your comments
– All your broadcasts are stored permanently in the cloud.
Instagram has quickly grown from a fun and trendy mobile phone app to a massive and influential social network, which is now even bigger than Twitter. Last December Instagram shared their latest statistics; there are 300 million active monthly Instagram users, and 75 million daily Instagram users.
Many companies have added Instagram to their list of primary social media channels, and if you are managing social media for you personally, for your company, and even more so if you are managing Instagram for more companies, you know that juggling with different Instagram accounts can be hard sometimes. Especially so, because Instagram app doesn’t allow you to manage multiple accounts and schedule posts, which requires logging out and back in when posting between accounts. While we don’t approve of scheduling posts for the sake of spamming your followers, we do think scheduling Instagram posts can be of great help so you can plan your posts accordingly when you are pressed with time, and prepare high-quality images to share with your followers.
While there are several scheduling only tools for Instagram – they don’t enable you to publish posts on Instagram, but allow scheduling, and when it’s time for publishing, they will send you a reminder, so you can go to the app and do it yourself (this is not convenient when you have no access to your phone or if your phone battery dies). Among these scheduling only Instagram tools are Latergramme and TakeOff.
If you are looking for a tool that will help you schedule AND post on Instagram, then I recommend you to try these two:
ScheduGram is for social media managers who need an easier way to manage Instagram for their clients and brands. Schedugram features web uploading, scheduling, and supports multiple accounts. I have been testing Schedugram in early 2014, when they were just starting out, and gave them a second try this spring as well. What I love about ScheduGram is the ability to upload, schedule and post Instagram posts for multiple accounts – after you schedule your post, the tool will publish it as scheduled, you won’t need to approve or push the post to go out. Their photo editing tool is fantastic, you’ll be able to crop your photo, fix colors or add filters. You can also do bulk uploads and add multiple users for the account, so your team members can help you with scheduling. Schedugram also allows unlimited uploads of both photos and videos, and unlimited invited users. Schedugram lets you see scheduled posts, but you can’t see the previously published posts. Scheduled posts are lined up in your Scheduled Posts page.
The pricing of Schedugram is set of $20 USD for an Instagram account with less than 10,000 followers. ScheduGram offers 7 day free trial.
I’ve learned about Onlypult Instagram scheduling and posting tool about 10 days ago. I decided to test it out, and 7 days into using the service, I really like it and have decided to stay with this tool instead of Schedugram. OnlyPult also allows you to manage multiple accounts, upload your photos through the web, schedule them, and add multiple users (there are different pricing plans that allow you different types of usage).
Onlypult has a very user friendly dashboard. Each connected account has it’s own tab where you can see scheduled posts, review the page with already published posts (even the posts you published before joining Onlypult), you can see your scheduled posts in a calendar view, which I find a neat feature, so you can plan your campaigns or posts accordingly. In the future, Onlypult is promising to add analytics as well, and they have a Planner feature, which is similar to Buffer Schedule, where you can set up posting times, and when adding new posts, Planner can add them up and publish as you scheduled. While I think Onlypult tool is more user friendly than Schedugram, I prefer Schedugram’s photo editing tool, which is more advanced and useful as in Onlypult.
Onlypult pricing is more accessible than with SheduGram; START plan with 3 Instagram accounts and 1 man management costs $12 USD/month, SMM plan with 7 Instagram accounts and 2 man management costs $20 USD/month, AGENCY plan with 20 Instagram accounts and 3 man in management costs $39 USD/month. Onlypult also offers 7 day free trial.
Are you using an Instagram scheduling and/or posting tool, or have any questions regarding Instagram? Share your favorites, comments and questions with us in the comments below.
Hola, we hope you had a fabulous Easter! We’re back on our blog after a short break, but that doesn’t mean we haven’t been busy! We spent the month of February renovating our office, which got devastated during hurricane Odile, and we’re quite pleased how the works are turning out. Our thinking hammocks are back, and we now have two new cool spaces for brainstormings and gatherings, which is super nice. I’m sure we’ll be using them with pleasure and create some fantastic ideas around them. There are some details still missing, but I think that design is a never-ending process in general; there is just always something that you can still improve on, add on. Then March was marked with this happy event, and gatherings with family and friends which visited us all the way from Slovenia, Serbia, Australia, Canada, US, mainland Mexico and Baja.
We have a couple of very exciting projects at the LA76 office currently, about which I will write more once they are launched, but here I will mention a re-branding of a hair & make up company, with new corporate visual identity and a responsive website, a communications strategy for a financial consulting company, exciting new marketing strategy for a book launch, social media contest for a restaurant, vacation / real estate photography of a stunning beachfront home, a collaboration with a new Slovenian magazine, and more.
We’ve also decided to explore more of our beautiful Baja. This Easter we hiked one of the hills near Todos Santos, only to discover a location of the antique port, a home of sea lions and a new favorite picnic spot. It was spectacular, and we’re already planning new adventures.
What are you up to lately? Share with us in the comments below.
Branding is one of the most important aspects of any business, and it is equally important for large or small businesses, retail or B2B. In addition to branding, an effective brand strategy will give you a major edge in increasingly competitive markets.
And while branding is an immense topic we certainly can’t explain in just one blog post, it is important for your small business to have a brand. If you don’t know where to start or what to do, start from the beginning. Here is what we recommend.
Simply put, your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it differentiates your offering from your competitors’. Your brand stands for who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.
3 Foundations of Brand Building for Your Small Business:
1. Get a great logo
The foundation of your brand is your logo. They’re the shorthand — the visual cue — used to communicate a brand’s culture, behavior, and values. Logos are instantly recognizable, and can provide the base upon which a brand can be built. Place your logo everywhere. Your website, business cards, email signature, packaging, company car, newsletters and other promotional materials should integrate your logo and communicate your brand.
2. Get a website
About 48 percent of people have cited a website’s design as being the number one factor when judging whether a site is credible or not, and an overwhelming 94 percent of people have cited a website’s design as being the reason they mistrusted or rejected a site. If you don’t nail this most basic form of design and aesthetics, you’re not going to communicate efficiently. More importantly, you won’t be trusted.
If you are just starting out and thinking whether you should even have a website, the answer is yes, absolutely! Today a website is like an ID of a business, and not having a website can cause a mistrust of your prospect customers or clients. Your website can be simple, but make sure it is nicely designed, functional, effective in what you want to achieve, and that is promotes your brand.
3. Have an engaging social media presence
Today, brand presence on social media has become a marketing imperative. It allows brands to showcase their expertise, cement their place in communities as industry experts, do valuable market research, network with others, and show off what the brand is about. If a logo can be considered a brand’s face, social media is its voice. It allows brands to engage with followers and supporters, and personify the business.
And while the abundance of social media channels might feel overwhelming for a small business, especially when starting up, it is important to define at least one social media channel most used by your target audience, and engage there.
A strong social media presence has tangible results, too. In fact, it has a 100 percent higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing tactics. About 72 percent of marketers have also said that social media has helped them close deals, and another 45 percent of people have reported making new partnerships through social media.
Another benefit of using social media is that if you do decide to do any marketing there, it will be much less expensive than traditional print, radio or TV ads.
“If a logo can be considered a brand’s face, social media is its voice.”
Other branding tips for your small business:
Write down your brand messaging. What are the key messages you want to communicate about your brand? If you have employees, they should be aware of your brand attributes.
Integrate your brand. Branding extends to every aspect of your business – how you answer your phones, what you or your salespeople wear on sales calls, your e-mail signature, everything.
Create a “voice” for your company that reflects your brand. This voice should be applied to all written communication and incorporated in the visual imagery of all materials, online and off. Is your brand friendly? Be conversational. Is it ritzy? Be more formal.
Develop a tagline. Write a memorable, meaningful and concise statement that captures the essence of your brand.
Design templates and create brand standards for your marketing materials. Use the same color scheme, logo placement, look and feel throughout.
Be true to your brand. Customers won’t return to you, or refer you to someone else, if you don’t deliver on your brand promise.
Be consistent. Consistency involves all of the above and is the most important thing for your brand and your business. If you can’t do this, your attempts at establishing a brand will fail.
Brand building takes time, work and dedication. But, if you want to build your brand, and be successful at it, you need to take action. You need to make sure your company is always in sight, and interact with people once it catches their eye. Though it can take time to build up a small business’s brand, it’s something that has to be done.
Brand Building for Small Business, Case Study: Acapulco Chairs Baja
LA76 Strategic Design team has been approached by Acapulco Chairs Baja, a small business based in Los Cabos, a start-up who had the desire and vision of creating a brand, which would help promote the icon of Mexican design, Acapulco chair, and deliver it to its customers worldwide. As a start-up they didn’t have a large budget to begin with, but they knew that having a brand presence was crucial to developing their business. We developed a logo for them and a simple website with the main feature: online store.
Because of the complexity of shipping items from Baja California Sur across the borders of Mexico (because we are a border state with US, we have different rules and laws that concern shipping items across the border, which involve dealing with customs for each single shipping), we decided to use a young Mexico based shopping platform Kichink, which enables secure shopping and payments, and shipping with DHL, and takes much of the company’s burden of dealing with shipping and customs.
The website also features a blog, where they feature homes and decor ideas with Acapuco chairs.
Because of the size of the business, the owners didn’t want to heavily engage in many social media platforms, but have chosen to be present on Facebook and Instagram, which allows them to share photographs and engage with their public.
Phase 1 of this project is now completed, and we have begun planning Phase 2, which will involve a newsletter, packaging and some other items.
If you have any question about building a brand or regarding promoting your small business, please send us an email to info@LA76.com. We’d be glad to help!