Instagram has added a new feature! Instagram Reels act as a response to the recent success of the popular app, TikTok. Operating the same way, they are easily digestible pieces of content that can be watched at a quick pace. With the launch of a new feature, the perfect response is “how can we use this to benefit our business?”. No need to worry! We here at Waves Digital will break down Instagram Reels, including how to make them, and we’ll help give you ideas on how to implement this new aspect into your current social media ecosystem.
So… Why does this new feature exist? Well, Instagram’s parent company, Facebook has made many different moves in the past to replicate competitors’ most successful features. The introduction of IGTV was a response to YouTube’s success. And Instagram stories as a whole are something that was copied from Snapchat. Facebook has been known to do moves like this in the past, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that they’d do it again! Even though it is a clone concept, that doesn’t mean it won’t succeed. Instagram stories have become such a staple to the platform, causing the original Snapchat stories feature to become far more obsolete. Instagram has had success with this in the past, and if they deal the cards right, this feature will also become a main feature on the platform.
These videos are very easily created, and can be made in the same way stories are, by clicking on your profile on the top right corner of the main screen. The concept is slightly different from TikTok, as it limits the videos to 15 seconds, rather than the 1 minute limit on the popular app. This small time period is all you have to make your marketing stand out. This is much closer to the old Twitter-owned application, Vine, which kept videos to a 7-second limit.
So, as a marketing agency, how could we use this app? Well, for creatives, you can create a sped-up design process! Record your work on Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop and speed it up to fit the 15 second time limit. If your business isn’t on the creative team, you could do quick 15 second dances or fun workplace showcases that can overall add more personality to your team as a whole! The content created can also be posted on similar platforms such as TikTok and Twitter, where bite-sized content is easily digested!
Overall, this new feature is likely here to stay, and there are tons of different ways it can be implemented! While it’s still fresh in the minds of consumers, now is the perfect time to get a jumpstart on the concept, who knows, it might be what you need to put your business on the map!
Instagram’s official announcement “https://about.instagram.com/blog/announcements/introducing-instagram-reels-announcement/”
The number of different social media platforms available is endless, but finding the right one for your business provides you access to post content and reach a broader audience. This advancement has given way to so many marketing opportunities for businesses to potentially tap into billions of users to improve their brand image, get realtime feedback from consumers, or increase their client base. However, one of the biggest roadblocks in creating your strategy is often determining the best time to post on different platforms to maximize viewer engagement.
Understanding the optimal time to post is crucial to ensure that you get as much traction as you can. Having this data will help you schedule your publications and campaigns and maintain consistency with your audience. However, each platform will have different algorithms to determine what posts are shown to users, making it challenging to stay updated on each network. While it is difficult to pinpoint the exact time that you should post, there are data to help you identify the peak engagement times for each platform.
As a micro-blogging site, Twitter allows you to engage with your followers actively and reach even more users if your post receives a lot of engagement. You can post on this platform from Monday through Friday, with the safe times being 8 AM to 4 PM. The peak times are then found to be on Wednesday and Friday at 9 AM. Noticeably, the Twitter audience is more inclined to using the platform in the early hours as people use it as a way to catch up and get the latest updates and news quickly.
Twitter engagement then drops in the middle of the night between 10 PM to 4 AM as users have likely already caught up on what they missed, or are fast asleep. If you must post on the weekend, then schedule it on Sunday at around noon time. Aside from targeting the peak times, you should also try using images or GIFs in your tweets as these are known to attract a larger audience.
The key to maximizing engagement in Facebook is creating authentic content that incites genuine reactions and piques the interest of users. Facebook’s new algorithm ranks the posts to display on a user’s News Feed based on posts that are likely to generate a positive response. Thus, you have to make sure your content can have such an impact. Now, more than ever, authenticity is essential, so take the time to come up with your content.
The best times to post on Facebook are on Wednesday, from 11 AM to 2 PM, since users tend to check the platform periodically for updates. On the weekdays, the safe times are deemed to be from 9 AM to 3 PM, suggesting that users log off more in the mornings and evenings. Surprisingly, the weekends are not ideal times to post on Facebook as people do not usually spend time on the platform during leisure times and use it more for mid-day updates.
Nowadays, Instagram is quickly growing into a huge platform, with so many ways to post content: images, stories, IG TV, and live videos. Its algorithm works in a way that users will always receive the newest or most recent posts. This way, you will always get fresh content every time you refresh your feed. Thus, you have to find the times in which your followers are online to ensure your post is one of the most recent.
Similar to Facebook, there is also consistent engagement on the weekdays from 9 AM to 4 PM, while the overall best day is on Wednesday. Though engagement becomes lower during late night and early morning, it is noticeable that there are scattered times when users still browse the platform. This finding is likely caused by the popularity of Instagram Stories, which can easily be seen at any time of the day. The difference, however, is that you can still get good engagement from Instagram users during Friday and Saturday. Thus, you may be able to post content as you head into the weekend.
Compared to the other social networking sites, LinkedIn targets a more specific audience–professionals who are trying to build their networks. Despite having a smaller reach, however, the platform is particularly helpful in generating leads since users are highly motivated. With that said, the “safe” times to post on LinkedIn are from Tuesday to Friday, from 8 AM to 2 PM. The engagement on Monday is not as high, most likely since it is a day to get settled for the week after the weekend.
Unsurprisingly, the engagement drops after working hours–approximately before 4 AM and after 8 PM–and during the weekend. LinkedIn users noticeably use the platform more during workdays and take time off during their rest days. This also gives you time to come up with quality content to cater to a more niche audience, especially since you are targeting professionals who are looking for industry insights and connections.
Having data on the best times to post on each platform will undoubtedly help you plan your social marketing strategy. However, it is also important to keep track of your account’s analytics to monitor the performance of your posts. While the data can give you an idea of the general pattern of engagement in each platform, it is still possible that you get different results. For instance, you may find that your posts are more successful during the off-peak hours, which may be caused by the saturation of similar posts during peak hours. It could also be that you are targeting a more specific audience that you can reach at a different time.
Whatever the case may be, it will be beneficial to keep track of your posts and see how each performed based on the time you post. Several factors can influence the success of your posts, so it is best to continuously mine for data and insights that can help you refine your strategy. Not all methods will work the same for every brand or company, so be open to innovating and changing your ways to generate better results.
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Still, struggling to build the social presence you want? Waves Digital is here to help! Whether it’s website design, social graphics, or an entire multi-channel social strategy, Waves Digital Canada can help boost your digital presence. We love helping businesses create a strategic online presence that supports sales, lead generation, and brand persona.
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Knowing how to design a website is an extremely valuable skill that can help you in today’s technological age. With the help of content management systems (CMS) that provide tools to build your site without having to code, it has also become easier to learn. Though there are several website platforms available to use today, WordPress continues to be the dominant choice as it is versatile, quick, and easy to optimize. It is so popular that nearly 20 million websites on the Internet use WordPress.
Using WordPress for the first time can feel overwhelming as you go through different tools and functions. At first glance, it may seem like a simple tool, but as you learn about the platform, you start to see more complexities. However, once you familiarize yourself with the interface of WordPress, it will become less daunting.
Step 1: Set Goals
Before you get carried away thinking of different designs and elements, start by setting some goals. What exactly do you want to achieve with your website? Are you trying to improve brand awareness, sell more of your product, or give more information about your company? What you want to achieve will affect how you should design your website, so you have to be clear about it from the start. Otherwise, your website may turn out looking really good, but still not generate the results you want.
Step 2: Select a Theme
WordPress themes are pre-coded and pre-designed templates that you can use to add visuals to your website, saving you the resources needed to design from scratch. Before you proceed to the more specific elements of your site, make sure you find the right theme. To do this, you can go to your Dashboard, click on Appearances, then on Themes. WordPress will automatically use its latest theme for your site, but you can freely browse through several choices to find one that suits your business or purpose.
If you feel like you cannot find the perfect theme from the free choices, you can consider paying for a premium theme. However, do not feel compelled to get a premium theme as there are so many free themes that are just as functional and aesthetic. Overall, the goal is to find a theme that supports most plugins, has good readability and navigation, and as well as reliable site speed.
Step 3: Configure Your Theme
Regardless of what theme you select, it is likely that you will need to configure it in some way to match your needs. Under the Appearance tab on your Dashboard, click “Customize” and you will find the parts that need to be filled:
Site Identity includes the essential elements of your website, including your logo, title, tagline, site icon, and the like. The logo and site icon can both be uploaded from your local files or Media Library. Additionally, the site icon has to be a square image with at least 512 pixels.
The colors menu allows you to customize the color of your site, background, and text to match your brand image or desired appearance. The base color scheme serves as the general color preset for the theme, which you can select from a dropdown box. Once you choose a base, you can then select a background color, header and sidebar text color, and header and sidebar background color.
Do note that the customization options may vary based on the WordPress theme you are using. As you play around with different colors, you will see a preview of your site on the right side to see if the colors mesh well together or not.
Alternatively, you can put an image in place of a solid color for your background. You can upload an image from your local files or Media Library. Once you add a background image, you will also get the option to remove or change it. Additionally, there will also be options like Background Repeat, Background Position, and Background Attachment to format the image.
The menus or navigation panel allows you to create menus and determine where to place them. For each menu you create, you can add custom links, pages, posts, and tags as items, then select where the menu will appear. If you want to rearrange the order of the items, you can click the Reorder link to do so.
WordPress themes usually come with sidebars, which then contain widgets that you can add, remove, or move around. Common examples of widgets include calendar, categories, meta, recent comments, and others. Once you click the Widgets menu in your Theme Customizer, you will see a list of widgets that are currently in your sidebar. On the bottom, you will find an “Add a Widget” button that will show the available widgets you can add.
You can then move the widgets around by dragging and dropping in the order that you want in the sidebar. As you configure your widgets, you can also preview them on the right side to see the content from each.
The homepage settings panel allows you to customize your homepage. By default, WordPage will display the latest post for your homepage, but you can opt to use a static page instead. This option allows you to link viewers to a landing page that shows your products and services or something similar about your company. Once you select the “A static page” button, you will see two dropdown menus to choose a custom homepage and another page to display your posts.
The Theme Customizer also allows you to input additional custom CSS to style your website. Doing this is recommended for beginners as you can see the live changes on your site as you input your code. WordPress will also guide you as it will display error messages if there is something wrong with the code, as well as suggestions based on the code you type.
Aside from the multiple panels, you will also find three icons that look like gadgets on the bottom part of the Theme Customizer. These icons allow you to test your website on desktop, mobile, and tablet devices, which is a crucial consideration when designing your site. Additionally, the “Hide Controls” button will help you view your website in desktop mode properly.
Other Customization Options
Some themes are more flexible, allowing you to customize elements like the font style, colors, images, and others. If you prefer to have more freedom in the design of your website without having to do CSS codes, you can try looking for such a theme. Alternatively, you can also look for plugins to give you more styling options for your website. For example, you can install the Easy Google Fonts plugin to get more font options. Some plugins will also allow you to customize your site without having to write any code.
A quick search on the Internet and you will find so many popular WordPress plugins that are free to install! Nowadays, some plugins help you implement search engine optimization (SEO) by streamlining your tags and placing the right keywords. Others can be integrated into your Google Analytics to help you monitor site performance and essential metrics like your click rate and the number of visitors.
To install a plugin, you can click on “Plugins” in your Dashboard and search for the plugin you need. Beside each option, you will find an “Install Now” button that becomes “Activate” once the download is complete. Using this method, however, limits you to plugins that are part of the WordPress Directory. An alternative option would be to install the plugin zip file from the source and upload it to your WordPress account. Under Plugins, click on “Add New” then the “Upload Plugin” button to upload your file. Finally, click “Activate Plugin,” and you are ready to go!
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Still, struggling to build the website of your dreams? Waves Digital is here to help! Whether it’s one page of a website or an entire new website build, Waves Digital Canada helps small-medium sized businesses (or established businesses looking to grow) build websites that convert. Helping businesses create a strategic online presence that supports sales, lead generation, and brand persona.
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If you work in marketing or are familiar with the field, then search engine optimization (SEO) is a household name that you have likely heard multiple times now. SEO is one of the most popular digital marketing techniques utilized today to increase a company’s online visibility, boost its search rank, and optimize its webpage for better organic traffic. It is an extremely valuable tool that can lead to huge returns and profits if coupled with the right strategy and knowledge.
Though SEO comes with a ton of promising premises, it can be a significant change for companies that are used to traditional marketing methods and can come with high costs due to the technologies and expertise needed. If you have tried pitching SEO to your boss but got rejected, it is likely due to the skepticism surrounding the idea. There can also be the notion that the company has been performing well without the help of SEO, rendering the strategy an unnecessary addition.
It can be extremely difficult to convince your boss to utilize SEO in the business, especially since it is a technical topic. However, with the right explanation and approach, you can show how SEO will be a worthwhile investment for the company in the long run.
Use Data and Visuals
It is not easy trying to explain what SEO is, so a good starting point could be to use visuals that are easy to digest and contain pertinent data. Charts, graphs, and infographics with big numbers, in particular, can be eye-catching for anyone who sees them. These visuals should highlight relevant statistics like the number of people that use search engines, traffic value based on search rank, the frequency with which people search for products or services online.
Look at Competitors
Given how competitive businesses are today, the chances are that your competitors are already utilizing SEO. However, it can be tricky to show this to your boss since SEO results take time to show, so you can try to estimate your competitors’ performance by observing their search traffic. You can find some tools to help you estimate their traffic value as a way to show that SEO can yield results, albeit gradually.
Talk About Cumulative Growth
The thing about SEO is that even though it takes some time to see results initially, it has the potential to lead to cumulative growth. Most marketing efforts usually translate to one-time results that will require expenses every time you launch them. SEO, however, works differently in that you can continue to generate higher ROIs over time without necessarily requiring further investment. Thus, in the long-run, it is an extremely smart strategy that can maximize the company’s ROI.
Another thing you can point out is that while traditional forms of advertising can still be effective today, it is evident that the digital age has made technology an inevitable part of daily life. Thus, incorporating digital marketing strategies like SEO may become a necessity as more people turn to online platforms. Furthermore, SEO in itself still continues to evolve over time, so starting now will be crucial to ensure you do not get left behind.
Have a Solid Plan
Pitching your idea without a solid, well thought out plan can easily backfire since it will not sound convincing, especially if you do not fit it into the context of the company. Before bringing it up, think about specific goals, resources, and tasks that will be needed to execute the SEO strategy. Along with this, include your projected timeline and financial expenses to concretize the plan and provide a realistic expectation. Having this plan ready to present to management will help make your idea sound more feasible and less like an abstract concept.
Talk About Accessibility
Many may shy away from SEO because it sounds complex and requires the use of technical knowledge and resources. While it is true that there may be some technical aspects involved, you can talk about the accessibility of tools today to help with implementation. For example, Google has a tool for keyword research and for implementing schema markup, both of which are extremely useful for SEO. With these free tools, you can show your boss that there are many resources available to execute the strategy.
If you need help getting started, or with taking your SEO to the next level, get in touch with us below!
It is no secret that mobile has taken over as the dominant channel used by billions of people from all over the world. Whether it be to surf the net, look at social media, or search for products and services, the majority of users rely on their mobile devices to perform these key activities today. As a result, it is more important than ever for businesses to take steps to boost their mobile conversion rates.
Optimizing your website to suit mobile devices is a necessity if you want to capitalize on your mobile audience. You may have a stunning web design and interface that works seamlessly on the desktop computer, but if this does not translate to the mobile version of the site, then you can potentially lose several sales opportunities. Below, you will find some of the ways in which you can increase your mobile conversion rates to reach a broader audience.
Speed Up Your Site
Mobile users want quick results, so much that 53% of visitors will leave a webpage if it does not load within three seconds. Before you work on anything else, start by making sure your site loads quickly and correctly on mobile devices. Even if you have your content, layout, and interface nailed down, users will not be able to see this if they leave your page due to the slow loading time. Users may also decide not to click your site again in the future if they know that it takes long to load, so speed can have a significant impact on your mobile campaign.
To improve your webpage speed, compress your images since heavy graphics can significantly cause lags and delays in loading. Remove unnecessary elements that can contribute to the speed, but do not neglect the user experience.
Use Eye-catching Images
Images are crucial in e-commerce sites as these can draw the attention of customers and possibly influence their purchase decision. If you are an online clothes store, for example, then it will help to have people model the clothes in the images as photos with real people are said to be more persuasive than those without. Make sure you use high-quality images that feature your product, but do not forget to compress them so as not to affect your page’s loading speed.
Create Scarcity or Urgency
Mobile users are frequent shoppers of e-commerce sites, so using urgency and scarcity in marketing your products can speed up their purchase decision. Scarcity involves limiting the quantity available for specific products, whereas urgency involves limiting the time in which users can purchase them. You can include the words “Limited Offer,” “Last Item,” or something similar to trigger such reactions. Using these strategies can cause users to feel as though they have to purchase now in order not to miss out on an excellent opportunity.
Improve Mobile Usability
You have to make sure your site is easy to use. You can improve usability in several ways, and one of these is to create a simple site layout that is easy to follow. If you put too many elements on every landing page, users can get frustrated trying to navigate through the site. Similarly, clutter can also cause them to tap on the wrong thing due to the proximity of links. Good usability also means that users should be able to recover from errors easily and go back to where they left off the site if they decide to take a break.
Overall, the goal is to improve the user experience, so make sure you test your site’s mobile usability before launching it. See to it that your website is well-designed, and it is easy to find the essential elements. Another thing you can do is boost search functionality with things like autocomplete and filtering options. These can reduce the time it takes for users to search and potentially increase conversions.
Personalization has vast potential to increase your revenues since users value this feature and respond better to it. For example, you can offer product recommendations to users based on their search history to show them things that they may not have seen yet. Similarly, you can greet them with their name the next time they visit your site. These things may seem like small touches, but they can still impact the user experience.
If you’re looking for a company to optimize your website – Waves Digital is right for you!
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