7 Ways to Use Any Holiday to Drive Sales Through Facebook and Instagram (Bloom & Wild Mother's Day Case Study)

I'm really not very good at choosing flowers, let alone describing to a florist what I think the recipient would like. So for Valentine's Day this year, I pinned my hopes on Bloom & Wild - a  company that delivers bunches of fresh flowers through your letterbox. Thankfully, they pulled through and my wife loved the bouquet.

I, however, was more interested in their social media marketing. And with Mother's Day coming up here in the UK, I wanted to analyse how they promote what must be one of Wild and Bloom's biggest dates of the year.

In this blog post, I've highlighted - with examples - 7 ways that Wild & Bloom uses Mother's Day to drive sales through social media. The same premise could be adapted and used for almost any brand, so let's take a look.

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5 Strategies to Make Effective Pinterest Content Super Quickly

5 Strategies to Make Effective Pinterest Content Super Quickly

5 Strategies to Make Effective Pinterest Content Super Quickly

Creating brilliant content for social media - especially for multiple platforms - can be a real time sink. I'm a big advocate for re-purposing content to save time and conserve energy for other tasks. After all, why put all that effort in and not make the most out of what you create.

In a recent blog, Pinterest revealed several strategies for re-purposing images from other social networks to turn them into content perfect for your Pinterest feed - the type of visuals proven to perform better on the platform - specifically, vertical format images. Below, I've picked out some of these ideas (along with a few of my own) and mocked up examples to show you how they could work in the real world.

They're simple, quick, and effective, so let's take a look.

1. Crop a Facebook ad image

Facebook ad images are, with nothing more than a quick crop, can be transformed into ideal content for Pinterest. In this example, you can see a Facebook image by Mahabis alongside a cropped version that would work just as nicely as a narrow Pinterest pin. Add in the logo, et voila.

2. Stack multiple Instagram images

Oftentimes, brands will post multiple Instagram images linked by a theme. In the case of Omega below, it shared several images to show off its product links to the Olympic Games in Rio, along with brand ambassadors. In the second image, I have stacked four of these images to create a post that would work great on Pinterest, turning four squares into one large collage.

Where pertinent, use a tool like Photoshop or Canva to add a text overlay. In an A/B test by Pinterest, a multi-product Pin with text overlay had 7 times more engagement than a Pin with a single product.

3. Re-purpose a website or email newsletter banner

Website banners and email header images can be a great source of quick Pinterest content, with a little bit of editing magic. Take the first image below,  a banner from Ray-Ban's website advertising four steps to buying custom shades. By chopping the image up and stacking the elements together - as seen in the second image below - I created a new piece of content that is perfect for Pinterest.

4. Share Twitter Testimonials

Typically, Pinterest isn't the first place where your customers will go to rave about their experience with your product or service, but if you do receive high praise (such as on Twitter), why not gather a few of the testimonials together and use them in one single Pinterest post? In the example below, I have stacked three separate testimonials for the restaurant, Nando's. With a bit of branding and a clever caption, this kind of social proof can be just as powerful as any carefully-crafted ad image.

5. Dont' forget GIFs

Despite the explosion in popularity of GIFs on social media, they make up only a small proportion of content on Pinterest. Whether it's a GIF you have made specially for another platform, or if you re-purpose a video down into a few of its most engaging seconds, a nice GIF can really help your brand stand out on Pinterest. Make an eye-catching loop, demo a product, etc.

Over to you

What strategies do you use to re-purpose content for Pinterest? Will you be making use of any of the ideas above? Let me know in the comments below!

19 Unmissable Takeaways From Social Media Experts at Ragan Disney 2016 (Day 1)

19 Unmissable Takeaways From Social Media Experts at Ragan Disney 2016 (Day 1)

19 Unmissable Takeaways From Social Media Experts at Ragan Disney 2016 (Day 1)

This week sees the 3rd Annual Social Media for PR and Corporate Communications Conference at Disney World, organised by Ragan. Two days of presentations are packed with social media advice and strategy for business. Here are X of the best takeaways from Day 1, as tweeted by its attendees using the hashtag #RaganDisney.

First to speak was Danielle Brigada on ways to measure social media ROI...

Danielle Brigada (@starfocus) is the head of social media for the US Fish and Wildlife Service (@USFWS), and environmental comparisons played big in her presentation, bringing to life some really helpful social media strategies for measurement and report-building:

A super handy analogy to think about the way social media works.

No good going into social media with a singular focus; communication and measuring is just as important as content creation.

An easy way to break down and measure soial media ROI...

Want to impress your bosses? Here's a sample quarterly report to mirror.

There are so many variables in a social media strategy. To make sense of it all, isolate the elements that matter most to you, and align with your goals; measure the progress against them.

Video for Social on a Budget (Why Your Smartphone is All You Really Need

Hosted by Justin Allen (@Allen_Justin), social media storyteller and CEO of Ruckus Factory. He shared some great ideas for producing compelling social video using just your smartphone. Here are some of the highlights:

On preparing to get the best footage and audio...

Never zoom with a camera that doesn't have an optical lens, else you'll ruin the output.

On embracing the limitations of mobile video production...

If you're blessed with "sausage fingers", editing on mobile for long periods could get frustrating...

On producing compelling video content...

Think of a viral video you've seen recently. That's your benchmark and competition!

Depending on the platform, viewers will switch off if the content is too long. For a "catch all" solution, 30-45 seconds is a good length.

Preparation and planning video will result in the best results possible.

Closing Day 1 was Mark Ragan, CEO of Ragan Communications, who focused on brand journalism on social media

Mark's (@MarkRaganCEO) presentation aimed to make us change the way we approach our thinking towards the very essence of social media marketing, particularly those stuck to using the tactics of traditional media.

On creating a basis for a sound social media strategy

Rather than thinking like a broadcaster, think like a journalist... make your own stories. Mark said that it isn't about creating more stories, just better ones... quality over quantity.

On optimising social media content for your audience...

The content you create should be riveting, Mark said, encouraging us to be the "Buzzfeed" for your niche.

Stop thinking about what your audience could do for you, and start thinking about what you can do for your audience.

Upon delivery of content, your voice should match your brand personality, Mark said. If you don't have a defined brand voice, just make sure to be authentic and human.

Over to you

What are your thoughts about the ideas shared by speakers on day one of the social media conference at Disney? Let me know in the comments below and check back tomorrow for day two and more words of wisdom!

Andrew Macarthy is a social media consultant and the author of the #1 Amazon Web Marketing Bestseller, 500 Social Media Marketing Tips.

Buy 500 Social Media Marketing Tips
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007L50HE6
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B007L50HE6

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How to STAND OUT on Social Media With Effective Visual Branding (Eve Mattresses Case Study)

Does your brand have a strong visual presence on social media channels? Do you want to increase brand recognition online?

Using consistent visual design elements in your social media marketing efforts helps people to spot your updates in busy news feeds while simultaneously showing off your business' personality. Ask yourself the following question: Given one quick glance (and that's all most social media content gets!), can people spot your brand amongst dozens of others?

In this blog post, I'll show you examples from Eve, a mattress manufacturer - and how it uses colour, fonts, and composition to make its brand stand out on social, and to convey its core messages. 

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