Why Snapchat Should Be Part of Your Brand
Jul29

Why Snapchat Should Be Part of Your Brand

  By now just about everyone has seen someone take an awkward photo of themselves in public and think, “Why?” Social media and millennials are the perfect mixture. Businesses probably already utilize Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social networks to either promote or provide newsworthy updates to their following, however, a majority probably haven’t had the time to take advantage of Snapchat. Snapchat provides its own hidden gems that other social networks cannot do, which is why it should definitely be considered when expanding your brand image.   What is Snapchat?   Snapchat is undoubtedly one of the most popular used apps right now, with its unprecedented amount of funding it receives, Snapchat is constantly being updated and improving its craft. At the moment it sets itself apart from other social media platforms in several unique ways: Snapchat provides raw, exclusive content. Nothing can be archived Able to have time elapsed video and photo sharing Allows for creativity to blossom. For example, Geo Filters and doodling. Secret QR Code feature for adding friends (Also, allows selfies to be the “Snapchat Ghost” in the QR Code. Use your logo if you are a business) Here is mine featuring me drinking coffee this morning. Imagine how many users are on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram right now, people seem to ignore the fact that Snapchat is right up there with them in the ranks of not only popularity but amount of users as well. Companies unknowingly have a huge amount of potential to reach their following and promote their image with Snapchat.   Reach the Younger Demographic   Without a doubt Snapchat is dominated by millennials. In fact, according to an article by CNET, research firm ComScore discovered that 18-24 aged users make up 45% of all Snapchat users. Almost doubling the percentage for any other social network, for that age group. There is no question if the younger market is in your business niche, definitely have a swipe at utilizing Snapchat. Think about this, there really hasn’t been a concrete way to market yourself with Snapchat, the opportunities are endless. Considering Snapchat has not been around for not even half a decade, it still is viewed as trendy by many. Businesses who have Snapchat, will appeal much more with the younger generation. Today’s youth perceive those who have the app as cool. TIP: Take a screenshot of your QR Code and promote it on other social media platforms to gain your following. Your loyal followers will definitely add the account.   Special Sales and Discounts   Probably the most popular way to use Snapchat from a business perspective is to offer discounts to your customers. Since the app only...

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8 Tips to Market Yourself the Right Way on Instagram
Jun19

8 Tips to Market Yourself the Right Way on Instagram

Instagram currently has 150 million monthly active users and 16 billion photos on the free photography app. However, Instagram has come a long way since its launch in November 2010. In its early stages, Instagram, and its users, were trying to figure out what the app’s identity was. What was its purpose? It soon became apparent that Instagram didn’t have an identity, but rather something that is completely transparent for each and every user that adds a filter to their latest post. Now Instagram is becoming an incredible marketing tool for both people and businesses alike. Whether an Instagrammer uses their profile as a selfie machine, picture book for your travels, or a DIY blog, the app is becoming as important of a social network than Facebook or LinkedIn. There are a few tips you should be following if you are representing a brand or marketing your personal brand on Instagram. Employers and customers alike can use your account as a portal to who you are and the brand you represent. Whether it’s your personal or professional account, these tips should benefit your Instagram with more likes and more followers. 1. Allow people to know the person behind the camera People like following interesting accounts, but they need to know who they’re following and why your account should be important to them. Make sure your profile picture and bio are authentic to who you are. Your image should either be a great picture of yourself or a logo of the brand you are representing. Spend time on your bio to ensure an instant connection with your audience. Expert tip: Make sure that your Facebook or business’s website link is featured in the bio, as well. 2. Create a niched community that reflects who you are Is your Instagram used for traveling? Follow travel accounts and double-tap their pictures. Do you use it for your business? Find local, national, and international businesses that are similar to your company and build a relationship with them by commenting and asking questions. In order to get quality followers you must create a like-minded community that is interested in what you are posting. 3. Don’t be selfish, get those fingers tapping! Instagram is a two-way street. You can’t expect engagement if all you do is scroll through your homepage at 2 a.m. Instead of being selfish, waiting for likes to roll in, be nice! As stated above, liking people’s pictures is great, but go the extra step by commenting and interacting with the pictures you come across. Not only will you get more engagement from that account owner, but others will see your name much easier when it is in the comments rather than in a slew of hundreds of likes....

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Facebook is Creating a Smaller World With New Facebook Lite App
Jun12

Facebook is Creating a Smaller World With New Facebook Lite App

Last Thursday, Facebook launched their highly anticipated app, Facebook Lite. It has all the basic features that the flagship Facebook app has, but it runs on less than 1 MB of data. For some perspective, the traditional Facebook app takes up 25 MB. It will be accessible across all network conditions, specifically extending to developing countries with poor internet connection.  Vijay Shankar, the product manager for Facebook Lite, stated that Facebook’s core experiences like News Feed, status updates, photos, and notifications are all accessible through Lite. However, users will not be able to watch videos or use location tracking. Essentially, Facebook Lite is the key to open the doorway to the non-westernized world. According to the Telecommunication Development Bureau, 95% of the world’s population has access to 2G internet. As you can imagine, Facebook has now tapped into a completely new market. The app is currently available to android users in Asia, and in the coming weeks Facebook Lite will be accessible in places such as Latin America, Europe, and parts of Africa. With the “Lite” app, Facebook has the potential to reach over 5 billion people. 5 billion. With this news, I have some questions that I am hoping will be answered in the coming weeks as Facebook Lite is released to more countries. Will Facebook channel its former self in order to save data? Remember when Facebook looked like this? It was a simpler time, that’s for sure. Simpler times also meant much less space on your device, whether that was your desktop or your mobile device. Granted the website above was the desktop layout for several years, the app has had some significant changes, as well. With only 1 MB of data for Facebook Lite, I am curious whether or not Facebook will channel its younger self and provide a basic layout compared to the extremely sophisticated one we have now. Will these profiles have a cover photo, or just a profile picture? Can you view a Facebook Lite profile from the Facebook app? There are so many questions about this foreign app, and I can’t wait to learn more information as it is released and modified. How will Facebook integrate itself into the cultures of developing countries? In America and Western Europe, Facebook and other social media outlets are apart of our culture and daily routine. However, that is not the case for several of the areas that Facebook is now targeting. How will Facebook make a lasting imprint in these countries to ensure they become loyal users to the social media site? The creators of Facebook are going to have to tailor the app to people in Latin America or Africa or Eastern Europe so that each...

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Pinterest’s Buyable Pin no surprise, so what’s next?
Jun08

Pinterest’s Buyable Pin no surprise, so what’s next?

Earlier this week Pinterest announced that it will soon be rolling out its latest feature: buyable pins. This is perhaps the most wonderful and dangerous thing to happen to me since my student ID was hooked up to my parents’ checking account in college. For years, buyable pins have been the number one request from Pinners, and now our dreams have come true. We all knew this day would come and now that it’s here, I can’t help but wonder: what’s next? Now that Pinterest has taken a head-first dive into the world of ecommerce, I’ve made some predictions about what this social media power-house will do next… and what I’d like to see happen. 1. Giving Amazon a run for its money By creating buyable pins, Pinterest stepped into Amazon’s territory – the third-party online marketplace. Josh Constine at TechCrunch reported that Pinterest’s latest buying feature will include a button that allows a Pinner to add items to an Amazon Wishlist. Undoubtedly a handy feature, but what’s the point when I can simply pin it and come back to buy the item on Pinterest later? I am curious to see how the relationship between these two online giants will develop in the coming weeks. 2. Sponsored Buyable Pins We’ve got sponsored pins now, and we’re getting buyable pins soon. It can only be a matter of time until the two become one. Pinterest’s GM of Monetization Tim Kendall told TechCrunch in an article published June 2nd, 2015 that “This isn’t an ad offering, it’s an experience for pinners.” However, he went on to explain that though it isn’t an advertising opportunity yet, they hope to offer that at some point. 3. Expanding its own Ecommerce I have already compared Pinterest to Amazon in this post, but I will do it again. Amazon is not only a third-person marketplace, but now sells its own goods as well – the Amazon Kindle, for example. I wonder if Pinterest will do the same in the future, and if so, what their goods will be. Perhaps a sturdy waste bin for failed Pinterest craft ideas.   4. Shopping Lists I’ll soon be able to buy items right off Pinterest, but if you’re like me, you have a voice in your head that says you can always find it cheaper somewhere else. I’d like Pinterest to give me the ability to create a shopping list from things I see on Pinterest, so I can compare prices and take advantage of deals in physical stores. I imagine this feature would look something like Google’s Keep app, but built into Pinterest.   So there you have it, my hopes,...

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In-App Dating? GetReal
Apr29

In-App Dating? GetReal

Smartphone dating applications have become the new norm when it comes to meeting new people. While you can still walk up to strangers at a coffee shop or bar and get to know them in person, that particular form of spontaneity has gone by the wayside thanks to apps like Tinder and Grindr. I mean, why should you actually talk to someone when you can left- or right-swipe their profiles to see if they’re interested? Being rejected via social media applications is so much less traumatizing than in person, right? I’m not sold either way, but a new app wants you to get real about meeting new people. GetReal is a recently launched iOS app that wants users to spend less time messaging through apps and more time in each others’ company. Similar to Tinder, it’s a location-based networking app that connects you to the people in your vicinity. However, there is no in-app interaction and pre-meeting conversation other than the request to meet. Here’s how it works: When you open the app, it shows you everyone on GetReal in your surrounding area. After checking out the various user profiles consisting of one photo and a short status, you can send a meeting request through a pin-drop map feature to pinpoint the location and have the option of adding a short message. The requested person has half an hour to accept, decline, or defer your invite. Then you meet them in person and start a conversation that way. All communication on the app is limited to the meet up requests; there is no chat or messaging function. If you’re a little iffy about meeting a stranger, GetReal allows users to link their Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn profiles to the app so you can see if you have any mutual connections. The app also keeps track of how many people you’ve invited to meet, how many people are available in your location, and any people you have muted, which we’re assuming is a way to block people. GetReal isn’t limited to screening potential dates; the main goal is just to help people meet in person. Whether you’re networking, in a new city, want to meet people in your neighborhood or while traveling, want to expand your circle of friends, etc., GetReal wants to help users meet up in person. A group of 200 beta testers in San Francisco and New York tech industries found the app can be used for anything; they have been using the app for everything from recruiting to tech talks to growing their networks. The app creator, Arnaud Meunier thinks the recent inflation of apps and...

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R-E-S-P-E-C-T, You Should Really Clear Your History
Apr23

R-E-S-P-E-C-T, You Should Really Clear Your History

Ok, not the greatest adaptation of the song. You just have to sing it real quick and it works! So we have all seen what happens when a tweet is taken out of context or personal pictures are stolen by hackers. Those affected have to work to reinforce their image while keeping their cool and not saying anything to further aggravate the public. This isn’t just for celebrities. Public image is hugely important in today’s world for everyone from college graduates to company CEOs. It can make or break a person and even a company. And with everyone being connected on social media today, it makes it even easier to unintentionally tarnish that image. Well, now there is an app called Clear that goes through your social media history on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, flagging posts that contain inappropriate content, using IBM’s supercomputer and an algorithm. What constitutes “inappropriate content” on the app? Well, the obvious profanity, but Clear also flags post containing words like “gay” or “women,” that might be offensive to those respective groups, depending on what was originally said.. The app works to flag these posts because if taken out of context, they can be very offensive. Clear was invented by Ethan Czahor, a man who made headlines of his own not too long ago. Czahor was hired as the chief technology officer in Jeb Bush’s political campaign, but after a history of offensive tweets and blog posts were brought to light, he resigned 36 hours later. Not the greatest thing to happen to him that year. Now Czahor wants to help the future generation of professionals who share almost everything online. “Every millennial is now entering the workforce… and everything that they’ve said online for the last 10 years is still there, and that’s a new thing for this generation”. Czahor hopes to help others avoid falling into the same situation he did. The development team is working to improve the algorithm for finding inappropriate content, and to also recognize pictures and videos that might be compromising. As a soon-to-be college graduate I have heard the lecture from parents and teachers about watching what you put online, but you don’t always catch everything. I am currently on the waiting list for this app, and hopefully it will be worth the...

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