How to "Meme-ify" Your Instagram Account 👻📲

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The peak of social media and pop culture fandom (as with many topics we chatter about on this blog 😉 ), the Internet meme has shot to fame as a form of lighthearted, highly relatable, quick-to-read entertainment. Typically featuring a combination of text, GIFS, and imagery; memes are passed on from person-to-person in a broken telephone style of utter Internet genius!

Staking their claim as the real MVPs of cultural expression, memes play a key role in understanding contemporary society through the lense of a generation who’s come of age growing up with the internet. So what does that mean for us professional storytellers you may ask? For digital marketers, entrepreneurs, entertainers, and creative pros, meme marketing can be an extremely low-cost way to create engaging content that attracts a following. Being a meme geek myself (and yes, I payed $39.95 at Chapters for the ‘What Do You Meme’ party game) I’ve found there to be a few defining characteristics necessary for crafting the perfect viral meme. 


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1. Relatable 💯🔥

Relatability and broad appeal is a must-have ingredient in successful meme-making. By definition, memes are a way of packaging widespread feelings into nifty little graphics so users can easily share and express their sentiments of day-to-day-living. The name of the game here is that you want people to read your content and think ‘SAME’. 

Even more, you want your audience to read it and find elements within the post that remind them of their relationships with others, which influences them to want to tag their friends in the fun. Take a dive into the comments of any meme posts: the proof is in the pudding. Every second comment you’ll read will be an “OMG US!” followed by a string of silly school-girl laughing. The more relatable the post, the more reposting and re-meming you’ll see from your users. In other words: they will essentially be advocating for your brand in a much more authentic, and organic way than ad posting and you’ll be able to reach a much wider audience. 

2. Witty 🧠💡😂

Memes can be an incredibly fun piece of content, but at the core of it all, memes also have to be witty and clever. Usually leveraging satire, social commentary, nostalgia, or a combination of them all; what makes memes so great is that they have a way of expressing obvious things in a way that we haven’t seen before. A high-quality meme can be both funny and insightful. In a time when many consumers skip ads whenever they can, marketing with humour and familiar media can engage even the most hard-to-reach consumers. 

3. Entertaining 🎭🤹‍♂️

Sure, having a business-central goal in mind is great, but sharing memes to Instagram for the sole purpose of entertaining your audience is another way of upping your authenticity and lifestyle value. Memes are funny, and that helps foster community among your followers. Think of it like everyone trying to get in on the same inside joke. Our expert tip: share viral tweets from your community and don’t be shy to repurpose existing memes. The fun of it all is seeing how memes evolve in the process. Like a chameleon, they shift and change to blend into conversations of celebrity gossip and prevalent scandal, and it’s hilarious to watch such small moments get blown out of proportion until it has created nation-wide trend. 

4. Relevant 👨‍💻☝️

Keeping in mind that meme marketing’s end goal is to promote your own brand, it is important to maintain your brand values and keep up with a consistent TOV (tone of voice) when you are trying to cherry pick the best memes that’ll make it to your feed. You don’t want any memes to contradict any aspects of your business, insult or disrespect your audience, or generate conversations outside your scope of interest. Either way, you can still be creative in finding niche subcultures that relate back to your business. Think about all the raised eyebrows and confused comments a cosmetic brand would receive if they were always hyped up about football references and concerned about who’s going to win the Superbowl on their Instagram (unless you strategically positioned your business as a sports-friendly cosmetic company!) 

One last word before wrapping up; Don’t be shy to use crafty memes. There is something endearing about their amateur nature and less-than-perfect resolution. (Remember, authenticity is key!) So, embrace the unpolished: It’s a meme world after all!



What are some of your favourite meme accounts on Instagram? Let us know in the comments below!



-Holly Eady

#KEEPSOCIAL

@serotinamedia



Everything You Need To Know About The Instagram Creator Account 🎨

When creating an Instagram profile, you were originally given the option to create either a Personal or Business account. But now Instagram has introduced a 3rd option: the Creator Account.

The Instagram Creator Account was introduced earlier this year for users that had over 10,000 followers, as the platform wanted to distinguish business owners from influencers. Instagram quietly rolled out the new account option, and it is now available to all users. If you have 10k followers and above, you can create an Instagram creator account, and access all the cool new features it offers. 

In-depth growth data 

When you have a Creator account, Instagram offers analytics that are slightly different than those offered to Business accounts. You can see not only follower growth, but a daily number of how many users unfollow or follow you. If you’re considered an influencer or social figure, this information is crucial to see how your growing audience feels about the content you’re posting.

Demographic data on your followers, including age and location, is also provided. This is beneficial for users to help them understand not only what content to post for a specific demographic, but also to see what demographics your content is attracting. All of this helps the “Creator” to be more mindful of content they’re posting, and how better to cater to their followers. All of this information is available on the “Creator Dashboard” - where all analytics can be viewed in one handy location.

Messaging from other users 

We’ve all experienced receiving unwanted messages from unknown users (myself included). With a Creator account, all new messages are split into three categories:

  1. Messages you WANT to receive 

  2. Messages that you do not want a notification for 

  3. Messages from people that you do not follow 

This helps the account holder to prioritize seeing messages they want to see, and gives less priorities to messages that they don't care about as much. This allows the “Creator” to cater to business opportunities and messages from friends and family, before messages from unknown users.

Labelling your account 

When you start a Business account on Instagram, you have the ability to label your account from a variety of industries such as: Personal Blog, Art, Food etc. With a Creator account, you can choose much more fun, personalized ways of labelling your account. For example, if you choose to be a, “Blonde Girl who Loves Puppies” that is how your account will be labelled! 

Those are just some of the cool features included in the Creator account! Would you be up for making the switch? If you’re thinking of making the switch, here’s a link with more info on the Creator account!


Happy Instagraming! 

Chrissie @chrysaphiakourlas 

@serotinamedia

#KEEPSOCIAL


Three Challenges of Influencer Marketing and How to Overcome Them ✅

Despite having heard this a billion times already, let’s reflect for a minute on how social media is not only HUGE, but all-prevailing, and ubiquitous. I can honestly and unapologetically admit that I consume social media on a daily basis, like a golden retriever nose-first in a pillowcase of Halloween candy. 

So, it really comes to nobody's surprise why marketing agencies are turning their full attention towards the potential of social media influencers as part of their marketing strategies. In fact, research shows that 17% of businesses now spend over half of their marketing budget JUST on influencers. Despite this, 63% intend to increase their influencer marketing budget over the next year. Estimated today at a $5-10 billion dollar industry, let’s delve into our top 3 pitfalls of brand-influencer partnership and how best to circumvent them. 

1. Follower Farms ❌💵❌

Social media influencers are basically the modern day version of celebrity, which draws people into possibility of fame and fortune. In an effort to kickstart their online careers, it has become common practice for people to pad their social media stats by buying fake followers and bot accounts. 

Services that provide Instagram stats and conduct social media audits can help you detect fake followers, but being aware of some easy red flags is a great strategy to begin with. Something to consider when trying to spot fake followers, is the amount of times they post a day. Often times, legitimate accounts gain high numbers of followers through frequent and consistent posting. People with little to no content and high follower counts are highly unlikely and should be flagged as a possible case of follower farming. Sudden, drastic peaks of follower growth is also a telltale sign of bot accounts. Lastly, check through their post’s comments; are their followers writing relevant responses or are they writing repeated, generic comments like “looks great” or “love your post”? Comments that can be applied to virtually anything often spawn from bot accounts. Accounts that are relatively anonymous, or inactive on their own feeds, or private are more often than not, fake accounts.

2. Staying Relevant & Engaging Audiences  👀🧠💡

Social media has quickly become oversaturated with influencers and users are beginning to filter their attention to avoid feeling bombarded with sponsored content. With so much content being put out there everyday, trends have also become shorter, and content that was highly engaged with just days ago can become overused and outdated in the blink of an eye. 

Now more than ever, audiences are craving transparency and authenticity in the marketplace. In order for brands to stay relevant amidst an intensifying economy of attention, “micro-influencer” campaigning has become the new-and-improved celebrity endorsement. Broadly defined as an influencer with a smaller-scale following compared to their “macro-celeb” counterparts; micro-influencers are better capable of building genuine relationships, catering to niche audiences, staying on top of industry trends, and presenting themselves as genuine every-day people.

Companies should ensure that each business partnership aligns with their marketing strategy so that audiences don’t read the relationship as a “hoaxy” business transaction. People want to see brands partnering with people who embody the values, beliefs, and lifestyle of the brand; ones that could and should enjoy the products and are happy to share their story with it. 

3. Social Algorithm Changes📉🚧

Social media platforms constantly undergo algorithm changes in order to optimize and adapt to users’ expectations and standards of experience. To put it simply, social media algorithms are based on intricate engineering and analytics that act as a technical foundation for how social media platforms operate and deliver content to users. 

As the algorithm changes and evolves, so too must marketers, influencers, and users adapt to newly released updates.Take for example the major algorithm changes made to Instagram this summer. Of the many changes made, you may have noticed that the feed no longer follows chronological order, but now prioritizes content the algorithm predicts users are more likely to interact with. In response, strategies should adapt to focus less on optimal post times and concern themselves more with creating quality, eye-catching content. 

In this case, the easiest way is the best way and staying up-to-date on all the newest social media updates and setting aside time to read and research industry publications is a must in order to understand how your content can remain relevant in a constantly changing landscape. 

Got any tips and tricks for working with influencer campaigning? Let us know in the comments below! 

-Holly Eady   🧚💫

@serotinamedia

#KEEPSOCIAL 

Micro vs. Macro: How Much do Influencers Actually Cost? 🤔💸

Influencers have been absolutely dominating today’s media landscape and are now considered one of the most effective ways for companies to reach their target audience. Since their speedy rise into the mainstream, it seems like these digital stars have been multiplying like rabbits; showering our feeds with squat proof athleisure wear and avocado toast from bougie bakeries. With that, new kinds of influencers have made their debut as powerful, profitable business partners.  

Influencer types can be broken down by follower count– among many other methods– into micro (up to 10k followers), power-middle (10k-250k followers), and macro-celebs (250k to over 1 million followers); their influence often concentrated within a specific niche – be it beauty, fitness, food, tech, fashion, or lifestyle.

In part due to social media becoming so ubiquitous, the influencer market has become completely oversaturated. This has made way for the rise of both micro and power-middle influencers who’ve created smaller, more tight-knit communities that are more likely to engage with their audiences. But how much do these influencers cost, and how can you choose the right one to invest in?

The Pretty-Penny Costs 💰

So I bet you’re wondering how much moula these influencers can actually make? To give you a general idea, micro influencers rake in between a hundred to a couple of hundred bucks per picture post, and between 300 to 900 bucks per video or vlog. Upping the anti, power-middle and celebrity influencers can make thousands of dollars per picture/video post, and even tens of thousands in cases of celebrity posts.

Of course, influencer pricing typically varies and takes into account: the number of followers and fans the influencer has, the amount of engagement their posts generally garner; the fit of the advertisement with their brand and following, etc… 

Despite what one might assume, influencer marketing is no walk in the park, and all the planning and prep behind the scenes to produce organic-looking posts often comes with a hefty price tag. So, unless you are a huge brand, going with celebrity influencers might not be feasible. This is why businesses are seeking opportunities with micro-influencers more and more.


The Micro Appeal 🤩📈

Micro-influencer marketing is skyrocketing and beginning to be just as, if not more, successful than celebrity influencer campaigning and advertising. Staying within that couple of 1000 followers, in recent years, has proven to be the ‘sweet spot’.

Why❓

Well for starters, micro-influencers are much more affordable and charge far less than macro-influencers. Further, micro-influencers are becoming much more accessible compared to their celebrity counterparts. With the popularization of Instagram among other social media platforms, the supply of online creatives has proven to be plenty. Now, anyone with an eye for aestheticism and a passion to #KEEPSOCIAL can build a large following. If you think about it, micro-influencers also just makes sense on a social level. A smaller audience means much more hands-on, personal interactions. Not to mention the idea that micro-influencers are presenting themselves as an ‘every-day person’; a person audiences feel will give an honest, genuine opinion, and not just rave because they were paid for it. Micro-influencers are considered experts in their respective niche, bringing us back to the importance of Gen Z & Authenticity on Social. Translate this into the business arena and you’ll find yourself with higher engagement rates, more personalized/specialized content, and more potential for business conversion– now that’s marketing gold! 

Key Take-Away 🔑

Putting in the work and conducting thorough research on your business as well as influencers in order to evaluate the commonalities between your goals/objectives/values/style/audience, will help paint a pretty solid picture of weather or not this partnership would jive well with your business, or not, and help you better evaluate the ROI. 

Even though micro-influencer marketing– let alone influencer marketing– is a relatively new commodity, smaller businesses can and should utilize them as an online resource. 

Have experiences with influencer marketing you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below!

-Holly Eady


@serotinamedia

#KEEPSOCIAL


Gen Z and Authenticity on Social ✨

As someone born on the cusp of Millenial and Generation Z (yes, I was taught both cursive and typing in the 5th grade) I often see these different modes of interacting with the world in my friends, family and even myself. 

A huge thing for the Gen Z-ers and something we hear thrown around a lot is the concept of “authenticity”. I want to break this buzzword down to start to digest why, in fact, authenticity is so important and why we should be talking about it. 

While millennials “came of age” in the 1990s/early 2000s, Gen Z-ers, born from 1995-2010 are essentially read-to-go digital users. This is the first generation to grow up truly interacting, daily, with the internet, social networking, etc. And not just networking via IM; with Snapchat, Instagram, and many other platforms bringing features like face filters, music integration, gameplay and so much more.  For a generation saturated with images, messages, branding, filters, etc – authenticity becomes something we crave.

Authenticity in the sense of, don’t tell me your brand is great (as all brands do) but rather, show me why your brand is great. It’s a given that you will send me personalized emails after I look at a product (after all, we are all tracked and our data sold to marketers anyway), but what are you going to do with that data to benefit me? Authenticity is going beyond the tools, so it’s no secret to any Gen Z-er that the new digital tools open up an entirely new world; but it’s all about using them fluidly with purpose and intent. 

You’ve heard us mention them… often; but what can we say, they’re killing it. Glossier is a great example of this. Self-reflexively using the tools of, in this example, Instagram, to connect with real humans. At Serotina, this human-to-human connection of social is something we’re always stressing with #KEEPSOCIAL.  

Essentially, the Gen Z generation can see right through all of the *BS* of a conventional marketing campaign. They want to see the real self, the real brand. They want to see how this can connect to them and their own lives. So, don’t be afraid to take off the filter every now and again and show us the real #BehindTheScenes. We’re here for it. 

Thanks for reading, what did you think? We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Until next time,

✨Ellie


@SerotinaMedia

#KEEPSOCIAL


Under the Gun: Time-Saving Tips for Content Creation ⏱⚡️

Have you been feeling uninspired, overworked, or under-the-gun whenever deadlines roll around? 😓 It may be time to reassess your current creative tactics in order to regenerate motivation and productivity. Whether you’re suffering from Writer’s Block, a plate that’s too full, or poor time-management, it’s difficult to produce the most captivating content and copy if you’re pressed for time and lacking inspiration. Plus, knowing that “you ‘should’ be doing more” only leads to more overwhelm and procrastination, rather than productivity and motivation. 

The good news is, coming up with awesome content doesn’t have to involve unhealthy amounts of caffeine or all-nighters! But, that means channeling your creativity and motivation into one task at a time, with the given brand voice top of mind. Lucky for you, we’ve put together Time-Saving Tips to help you stay organized, focused, and inspired when creating content! 😅 

From breaking up your work into timed chunks, banging out multiple “batches” of content at a time, and changing up your scenery, read up on the best 3 ways to save time on when producing high-quality content. 🚀

Tip #1: Time-Block ⏳

First things first: it’s important to create a plan of action. Time-blocking is the practice of scheduling out everything in your day in order to better manage your responsibilities. Start by making a list of all the things you have to get done, then allocate time slots to each task. Set alarms and work in short but productive intervals. (I’d recommend 20-45 minute periods, depending on the given task.) 

Establish tangible, realistic goals per block period, but be ready to take a break and move on to the next assignment when the alarm goes off. Even if you haven’t finished what you were previously working on, it’s important to know when to stop. This way, you can come back to the task later, all the while feeling less overwhelmed about all the other assignments you still need to get done.

Tip #2: Do More at One Time 📆

It may seem obvious, but sometimes it’s not: work on large chunks of content at a time! Seeing the whole entire week in front of you can be daunting at first, but it’s also the best way to make sure your content is illustrating a clear, consistent narrative that tells the story of the given brand. 

Once you’re already in the mindset of creating (even if you’re not feeling totally creative), things start to flow easier. Later Blog writes, “Once you’ve written one caption, you might find you have gotten the creative juices flowing and it’s easier than you first anticipated.” That’s because, when a creative mind falls into a groove there isn’t much that can stop it from creating amazing stuff!

Tip #3: Change up Your Scenery 🌿

Finally, when it comes to creativity, scenery is everything. Your environment plays a huge role on your motivation and focus. Why? Because if it's distracting or an uncomfortable space, you’re attention will be caught by things (scrolling through social media, fiddling with things on your desk, online shopping, etc.) that deter you from producing optimal work. 

What’s more, boredom and monotony can zap your energy and motivation, leading you to feel – perhaps unconsciously – creatively blocked. When you change up your work space – going into a different room, or heading out to try a new cafe – it gives you time and mental space to think outside of the box that you were, quite literally, just stuck in. A work environment that is new and different helps to foster inspiration and spark imagination

So get outside, move around, rearrange a room – whatever it takes to get the best content out of you. 😊

Overall, when you “trick your brain” into accepting or trying something new, you might start to think – and create – differently. When content creation feels more like pulling teeth, it’s time to establish new strategies, visit new places, and ultimately find a new source of inspiration. Without inspiration, what would “creativity” be?

Got any time-saving tips? Let us know! 

And remember to #KEEPSOCIAL!

Xx, Riley 🧡🌻 @riley_mckeown


Ways to Make Your Offline Business More Instagram-Friendly 🏬

Social media is such a central part of our society – from seeing what our family and friends are up to, to shopping at the click of a button, social media is how we keep up to date on trends, events, news, and more.

There is no doubt that online shopping is more popular now than ever before, with the integrated eCommerce functionality on instagram and the introduction of its “Shop Now” function. But with Instagram amping up their eCommerce support, what can you, as a traditional brick and mortar business, do to make your store more Insta-friendly?

There are MAJOR benefits to making tweaks to your store’s environment with the main goal of attracting new customers. So how can you make your offline store more Insta-accessible? Here are some tips:

Make the space brighter and cozier. ✨

Ever walk into a store and feel completely underwhelmed – just a “bleh” atmosphere altogether? Any business can achieve a more inviting vibe by adding a little more life to the space – plants, flowers, bird feeders if you have the outdoor space! By adding these simple elements, you can significantly liven up the atmosphere.

Another way to breathe life into a store is with LIGHT! 💡 Great light sources can come from windows, or you can opt to add gentle light fixtures. Twinkly lights are fun and easy ways to bring a brighter glow into the space. This will help consumers see your products more clearly, feel a little more awake while browsing your store, and – of course – take better selfies!

Finally, adding a lounge area with comfy seating can be a great touch to your store! Urban Outfitters has great examples of lounge areas they’ve integrated into their retail spaces. In their larger store spaces, they typically have an area with comfy couches and love chairs that make shopping super comfy and cozy for customers. The goal here is to offer customers a comfortable place to sit down and relax, maybe snapping pictures of the cozy spot that will compel them to share images onto their social profiles.

Pro-Tip: If your space has a Geotag and good lighting, individuals are more likely to want to post the space onto their own social profiles! This is the easiest way to curate user-generated content.

Add colours, patterns, and/or art. 🌈

A consistent aesthetic is super important in making your brick and mortar store more instagram-friendly! The simple addition of a colourful accent wall will make consumers more likely to take photographs and share it online. It doesn’t have to stop at just bright colours, either! Adding cool textiles or graphics can make your space that much more eye-catching.

It’s essential to tie all of these cool additions in with your branding. Adding your logo to walls, products and other merchandise will tell people exactly where your customers are, and will allow them to search for you more easily. These subtle yet powerful touches help your brand stand out as customers start sharing awesome posts on Instagram!

Coordinate your space with your brand. ✌🏽

The best example of tying your retail space to your brand and social? Glossier. They’ve managed to create a space that feels unified, both on and offline. They’ve created a minimalistic yet chic brand that’s distinguishable to their customers. When you enter a Glossier store, you receive a pink bubble package, which is instantly recognizable because they consistently share their in-store nuances and products with their audience on social!

If you’re a lover of Glossier, you may be aware that they’re known for having adorable quotes on their mirrors, which allows customers to take an on-brand selfie and share them online, tagging @Glossier along the way. This is an amazing way to entice consumers to take photos and other media content to be shared online, as it’s not something that stores commonly offer – and they’ve branded everything to give it an extra special touch.

Overall, the aim is to make your space something you yourself would love to take an image of and share. This can be achieved using colourful and eye-catching decor that appeals to your target consumer base. There are many benefits that can arise from updating your space: attract new customers, receive positive reviews online or by word of mouth, and utilize free advertising via user-generated content! The key is to #KEEPSOCIAL, always.

What could your brick-and-mortar business add to make it more Instagram friendly? Let us know!

-Chrissie Kourlas 🦋🌸  @chrysaphiakourlas

#KEEPSOCIAL


What is the Instagram Algorithm and How to Make it Work in your Favour! 🙋

What exactly is the Instagram Algorithm?

Shrouded in a cloak of mystery, ⚡the Algorithm⚡ essentially decides what you see on your Instagram feed and in what order you see it. Cracking this code is every digital marketer’s dream because it would mean having the power to place your content in front of more eyes. Which begs the question… how can you manipulate the Instagram Algorithm to get social content out to your entire audience?

How does the Algorithm work?

Short answer – no one really knows. Long answer, there are certain factors that play into a piece of content’s ranking. What we do know, is that Instagram has three top indicators of a post’s relevance to its audience. They are:

  • Relationship – which accounts you’re interacting with through likes, comments, shares, and tags the most! It’s important to engage with your audience on a daily basis! This is why #InstagramHustle is so important.  

  • Interest – Instagram will always show you what you engage with the most! What do you like to see? Whales? Goats jumping through hoops? The more you like a certain type of post, the more Instagram will show you similar content.

  • Timelines – If you’re strategic about the time you post, more of your following will be more likely to see your posts. That’s why it’s always important to be aware of when your audience is online.

How do I make the Algorithm work in my favour?

With the above information in mind, we can start to get an idea of how to leverage Instagram’s Algorithm to your advantage.

  • #KEEPSOCIAL. Posting often is a great way to remain relevant. But don’t let this interfere with the quality of your posts. However, post GOOD content, often.

  • Use proper hashtags. Hashtags are a great way to have conversations and reach people who are interested in you or your brand without even knowing about you yet.

  • Act like a human. Social media was built to be social, so use it to be social.  To be involved in the conversation: engage, like, comment, follow, direct message followers and potential followers – whatever your heart desires.

  • Make sure your content is #TopNotch. How many people are on Instagram to look at the pretty pictures and read interesting or inspiring copy 🙋‍♀️? Nobody wants to scroll through boring, generic, ugly or otherwise bad content. Make sure you stand out – both with images and words!  For tips on ways to make your content truly killer, don’t hesitate to reach out to Serotina Media.

For more information, check out Hootsuite’s How the Instagram Algorithm Works in 2019 (And How to Work With It).

Thanks for reading! We’d love to hear your thoughts. Join the conversation @SerotinaMedia. #KEEPSOCIAL

Until next time,

✨Ellie