7 things about social media that you probably didn’t know

7 things about social media that you probably didn;t know1. The Facebook “algorithm”
Sounds way fancier than it actually is. To cut it short, when a post has a good amount of likes, comments or shares, it means it’s reach automatically grows. Not only does it grow but it also stays on friends’ timelines for longer, which is why occasionally you will see posts from several days ago. It’s because Facebook think that you’re going to like it because other people have. It’s quite clever really, but it does work in the opposite way too. For example, if every time you post something (whether from a personal profile or a like page), if posts are continually getting little or no reactions, you’re going to stop appearing on people’s timelines, because Facebook works out that people just aren’t interested. Something very important to consider indeed!

2. The rise of social media
It’s almost completely dominating the world and I feel like soon it’s going to be a subject in the national curriculum! In the past year, social media users have grown by 176 million. That’s nearly three times as many people that live in the UK!!

3. Facebook is in fact the most popular social media platform
With 1.65 billion users (that’s like the population of China and the UK!), it’s by far the biggest social media platform.

4. Social media promotion is worth big bucks
Social networking sites earned an estimated $8.3 billion last year in advertising. SAY WHAT!

5. Twitterers are twitter addicts
It took 3 years 2 months and 1 day to go from the first tweet to the BILLIONTH. And an average of 500 million tweets are sent per day, which is about 6000 tweets per second. Who can even type that fast??

6. YouTube
300 hours of video is uploaded every MINUTE to YouTube, with 1 billion views a day, and more than half of those coming from mobile devices. And we can forget all those famous “YouTubers” who make a hefty wage from posting content on the site! (If you’re wondering how they make their mega bucks, it’s through the ads that come at the beginning of videos, as well as brands sponsoring them. Seriously would be the best job ever #workinginpyjamas)

7. #Foodagram
Pizza is the most Instagrammed food behind sushi and steak. It’s also a fave social platform for teens #selfie (personally I like a good #OOTD post – that’s outfit of the day BTW.)

 

Need help with social media development, management or promotion for your business? Contact our social media manager now at emily@ima-group.co.uk

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Improving your Business’ Digital Presence

IMPROVING YOUR BUSINESS DIGITAL PRESENCELiving in this ever growing digital age, it’s becoming increasingly important to keep your business in check when it comes to digital. Whether it’s web, social media or digital adverts, it’s becoming a huge platform for creating leads for your business, so it’s certainly important to look your best online!

Be active on social media
Post regularly and often with a variety of different posts that include text, images, videos – keeps your followers interested! You also want your different social profiles to have the same design (in terms of your header/cover photo and profile picture), a capturing bio, as well as the same tone and personality across all platforms.
You should also note that you’re best spending most of your time and effort focusing on the social media platform that will work best for your type of business; for example if your company is B2B (supplying goods or services to other businesses) then your best chance at social media would be using Twitter, however if you’re B2C (supplying goods or services to consumers), Facebook or Instagram could be your best chances of success.
Honestly, I would probably use as many platforms as you have time for initially, and then begin to drop those that don’t work out for you.

An up-to-date website…
… is so important. It shows potential clients what you are offering and gives them an idea of your brand or business! No one wants to see out of date content, so it’s really important to keep up to date with what is on there. Did you know that 55% of people spend only 15 seconds on a website? So you have that ridiculously short time to WOW your potential clients. It’s crazy considering the amount of time and money we invest in creating websites – yet it’s still so important to make it look amazing.

SEO!
SEO stands for search engine optimisation. In brief, this means that you will come up at the top of a search engine depending on the keywords that you use on your website and what the person has searched for. This is so important, especially when a potential customer doesn’t know your business’s name.

Need any help with your digital presence, whether it be social media, web design or more? Give us a call on 0161 440 2770 or email our social media manager Emily on emily@ima-group.co.uk

The Importance of Email Marketing to your business

the importance of email marketing to your business

Ever read a marketing email in your inbox and clicked through to see what the company are offering? Chances are you have, and though you may usually just delete marketing emails and think that they are an annoyance, someone there will find it of use.

 

An easy way to reach mobile customers
With the huge evolution in technology, it has meant that people can work on the go and still access their emails, work and the internet using smartphones, tablets and laptops. This means that when someone is on the train to a business meeting or on their way to work, they can still easily see your content.

Inexpensive
Using email marketing software such as Mail Chimp, you don’t have to pay anything for their basic packages, meaning that all you will be paying for is the content and the time it has taken to create.

An effective way of informing customers
There’s a lot more that can be included in an email in comparison to a social media post. You can inform current and potential clients of news within the company, as well as letting your customers know what additional services or products you are offering that could be of use to them. Email marketing is also great for holding offers and online coupons for customers to use.

More direct than traditional marketing and social media
If you think about how quick a Tweet goes out and then gets lost in your Twitter feed, it’s not as direct as something coming straight into a person’s email inbox. The likliness that they will open the email to read and click through to your website is much higher than if the same information was on a tweet.

Personable
With something coming into your inbox that actually has your name on it, you’re definitely more likely to read it. Plus, the great thing about email marketing is the fact that it is so direct, so you can also personalise what is going on the email. For example, if you signed up to the online clothing retailer ASOS’s email newsletters, depending on what items you “save” on your wish list on their site or app, this will then determine what emails you will get in your inbox. Pretty good idea really.

Easily measurable
Email marketing software has analytics built in, which makes it way easier to see how successful a campaign has been. You can see how many people have actually opened the email, how many have clicked through to your website, and even see how many people have bought from you from coming from the email (obviously this will only really apply to e-commerce sites).

 

Need some help with email marketing? Give us a call on 0161 440 7700 or email our social media manager Emily at emily@ima-group.co.uk

THROWBACK: Lonsdale Cash and Carry campaign from 1975

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Talk about #ThrowbackThursday — this week we’re going all the way back to 1975 with this campaign that we did for Lonsdale Cash and Carry. So as this was 21 years before I was born, I’ll let our MD Graham explain some more…

 

“We invented and managed the first ever Cash and Carry Wholesaler suppliers conference in the industry for Lonsdale & Thompson. The company, owned by Lord Vesty at the time, was growing rapidly and we proposed that suppliers should know and choose to invest their marketing budgets into Lonsdale’s and tell suppliers their future plans to get even bigger. Because of the cheeky Rabbit logo we designed it just had to be held at the Play Boy club in Canal Street Manchester. (That’s our story anyway!)

This photo (below), taken the day after the conference which was a great success, was our debrief meeting debating the positives and the negatives. When the bar closed and kicked us out it was all positive. Happy days!”

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So what else happened in 1975?

  • First episode of Fawlty Towers
  • Margaret Thatcher became leader of the Conservative party
  • Microsoft was founded
  • Sex Pistols’ first gig
  • ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ was released
  • The following celebrities were born… David Beckham, Jamie Oliver, Kate Winslet, Ronnie O’Sullivan, Russell Brand, Sarah Millican

Where to start when it comes to Social Media for your Business

where to start when it comes to social media for your businessI’ve written quite a few posts about the benefits of social media, but never how to get started. Before I list all the things of what to do, you first need to decide on why you’re bringing your business onto social media, and what you want to achieve from it.

1. Who’s responsibility is it?
It’s all well and good giving everyone in your company access to the social media accounts, but let’s be honest, it’s not completely going to work. Keeping it down to one person means that the tone of what you’re posting is consistent, and so you’re creating a voice that is also consistent.

2. If you haven’t already, create the accounts and make sure they all have the same name and the designs are consistent
Sometimes it’s not always easy to that – for example, our Facebook page is /IMA-Group but our Twitter and Instagram are imagroup_news, because the names had already been taken. So one way to keep up the consistency if your profile names are not all the same is to name sure that the design of each profile matches one another. For the profile picture on everything I would keep it simple at the companies logo, and on Twitter and Facebook you also have a header banner, so you could change this seasonally or if you have a certain event coming up (or you could just keep it the same all the time. I think it’s really important to keep everything looking the same to create the brand!

3. Start to follow your clients and centres of influences (those who have the same target market as you but are not in direct competition)
… as well as any former clients who you’d like to get work from again, and potential clients in your target market. What you’re wanting is for them to follow you back

4. Add links to your social media accounts on EVERYTHING!
Your website is the most important one, but on letterheads, invoices, business cards, leaflets… anything at all that has your company name and logo on it!

… So where to go next?
Once you’ve got all of the above done,  you need to create a content calendar – so when you are going to post things at  what time of the day and what you are posting, keeping in mind of any events that are happening within the company or within the world in general!
If anyone messages you make sure to always reply, whether it’s good or bad!

 

3 Useful Apps and Sites for Social Media Management

3 apps and sites for social media managementAs with every job, there’s always those little things that make your day way easier. Here are three apps and/or sites that make my social media job way easier – and they could make yours easier too!

1. Hootsuite
I use Hootsuite as the hub to schedule my posts and see what is upcoming. Now you can schedule posts directly from Facebook, but you can’t do the same from Twitter and Instagram (they are the sites that IMA are on), so this makes it way easier so that I can do it all from one place rather than having multiple windows open on the internet. I mainly use this on my desktop PC but I also have the app on my iPhone (you can also get it on the Google Play Store if you’re not on iOS), which is really handy because from time to time I’m not always sat at my desk, so it’s good to have it on there too so I can post from anywhere.
There’s also a very similar site and app called TweetDeck – it basically does exactly the same as Hootsuite, but I don’t prefer it as much.

2. Manage Flitter
I went on a Social Media course a couple years back with my previous company, and the person leading the course recommended this to us. I’m only on the basic version at the moment, where I have a list of people that we are following on Twitter that aren’t following us back, so I can delete them easily. You can also see if any of the accounts that you are following, or that are following you, are spam accounts, as well as being able to schedule on there and having a basic analytics to see what the best day and time is to post on your account. On the paid version, you can also get analytics and stats on how well a certain campaign has done. As far as I know Manage Flitter doesn’t have an app yet, but I use it maybe once a week, so I don’t really need it on the go anyway!

3. Facebook Pages Manager
Facebook is great on the desktop version with the amount that you can do with it, but on the mobile app it’s not as great – especially when it comes to Pages. I found the pages manager app when I set up a like page for my personal blog, and found it so easy to use, and so beneficial to anyone managing a like page! It allows you to post on the page, edit the page’s content, as well as being able to launch a promotion campaign on there too.

What apps help you manage your social media accounts? Let us know in the comments below!

The History of Social Networking, Part Two

READ PART ONE HERE FIRST!

the history of social networking 2
So in the last post, I covered the beginnings of popular social networking, starting with Friends Reunited, the popular children’s dress up network Stardoll, MySpace, and the increasingly popular Facebook.

Facebook came to the world in 2004, and just two years after, it’s rival (I’d say so anyway) Twitter was born in 2006. This is another platform that has grown with what you can do with it ridiculously in the past few years, as Facebook has too. Becoming the go-to for most businesses, Twitter has a word limit of 140 characters, which means choice words is key! Unlike Facebook where you can upload albums of photos in bulk, you can’t do this on Twitter. However, in the last year or so, you have been able to upload multiple photos to one Tweet, which makes it not too dissimilar from Facebook. The ability to upload videos is also a new feature, too. One significant difference with Facebook and Twitter is when it comes to Business. If you are making a profile for your business on Facebook, you have to create a ‘fan page’ or ‘like page’ – you cannot make a business promotion profile using a regular personal profile as this is against Facebook’s rules! However, to run a Like page, you are required to have a personal profile, which not everyone necessarily wants. Nevertheless, on Twitter, there is no difference between a personal and a business profile, they are all the same and do not require a personal profile to set it up.

The year after Twitter was born, the internet birthed another Social Media giant, ‘blogging’ site Tumblr. Now as a novice blogger myself, I don’t see this as a blogging platform, though it very much reminds me of a mix between Twitter and Tumblr’s predecessor Bebo (from waaaaayyy back in the day!). It’s become huge in the past 9 years, though I do find it rather a niche platform. Still, it’s a huge deal in the social media world.

INSTAGRAM. I love it. Don’t you?? When this first started in 2010, I thought it was one of those photo editing apps, and I didn’t like the fact that after you put these filters on your photos that you had no choice but to post them on your profile. Now I can’t get enough of it!

So where will social media go next? Well I wrote a post last month about Snapchat being used by business (read it HERE) – there was a huge hype for short while, but I just don’t get it as being used for business, but you can read more in the post.
With new platforms evolving every year, and with the termination of one of the first hugely popular sites Friends Reunited, what will be next? Facebook? Completely new sites? An old site making a come back? It sure is an exciting time when it comes to the digital world!

The History of Social Networking, Part One

the history of social networking 1
Doesn’t it seem rather crazy writing a ‘history of’ post about something that’s only been around for 17 years at the most, and popular in the last 7 or 8? Yet in that time it’s become so popular and is now a multi billion dollar industry worldwide.

I remember when I was little and my mum started using this site called “Friends Reunited” – now it’s recently just closed down, but I think that was the big one that started everything off. It was a place where you could connect with old school friends, finding them through certain networks. Nowadays, that’s really a lot of what we use Facebook for, however there’s a lot more that Facebook can do, but this really kickstarted the digital age of connecting online.

My first personal experience of social media (though I’m not too sure if you can class this as a social media site) was something called Stardoll. So it was aimed at girls and it was mainly to play dress-up on virtual dolls. At the time it was the best thing in the world, because alike a social network, you could connect with other people, see what their ‘doll’ was like and what clothes you owned, but there was no way of uploading photos, keeping with the fact that it was for children. You could however direct message people, as you can on Facebook.

Remember MySpace? I never had my own account because I was too young when the hype of it was around, but I remember looking on my dads profile and it looked cool, because if I remember rightly, you could have your favourite song playing when someone clicked onto your profile and you could change who was your “top” friends (as in at the top of the list).

It seemed to fade out after a couple years of the hype, and then in 2007, I remember the huge uprising of the one and only Facebook. I didn’t actually get a profile myself until 2008 when I started high school (even then I was too young, woops), and I used to add every single person from school, but it was a way of getting to know people from my new school, plus the archives of my Facebook make hilarious reading material when I get those Timehop notifications every morning! I know it gets a lot of stick, but when you think about it, Facebook is actually pretty good really.
There’s so much you can do with it; the messenger feature is probably one of the best. It never used to be brilliant when there was the separate Inbox and Chat features, but now it’s all integrated, and it has it’s own app, it’s fantastic, and it’s probably the only reason I use Facebook on a personal level.
That then brings me to the business side. I’ve written a couple other posts that have mention Facebook for Business, and it’s a really great one honestly! The thing that Facebook has over Twitter is the fact that posts can drift around on people’s timelines for days, whereas on Twitter it’s gone within a few seconds. Obviously this does depend on the amount of engagement on the post and the profile itself, but through promotion (that doesn’t really even cost that much), you can gain a substantial following and in turn, gain more customers or clients.

So for this post I’m going to leave it there, but I’m going to continue with Part Two on Monday, so please don’t forget to come back and read that too! (I didn’t want to overwhelm you all with a 1000 essay)

 

5 Common Misconceptions of being a Photographer

Image Credit: Shot ID Photography, www.shotid.co.uk

Image Credit: Shot ID Photography, http://www.shotid.co.uk

I thought that today I would do another job role ‘misconception’ post, this time around the role of a photographer. It’s a career that is somewhat glamourised by society, but I get the low down on what it’s really like thanks to some great insight from professional commercial photographer Jay from ShotID Photography.

1. It’s mega glamorous
If you call 15 layers in -20 degrees in the middle of no-where, or running around a photo studio for hours on end, then yes it is pretty glamorous. But no, it’s not all supermodels and celebrities.

2. You’re photographing the likes of Kate Moss, Cara Delevigne and gang on a daily basis
In commercial photography, you’re lucky if you even get a model – so no supermodels here unfortunately.

3. All you do is turn up, take a few shots and go home
There’s so much more to it than that! You’re the first there and the last to leave – getting everything set up, packed away, and then there’s all the editing too…

4. The photos you took miraculously edit themselves (with no extra work from yourself)
An 8-hour shoot more than likely will turn into another 4 hours (at least) of editing and downloading the images.

5. It’s a 9-5 job
Well 9-5 could mean 9am-5pm or even 9pm-5am. It’s never set hours in the day. You could work for an hour or it could be 14 hours. It’s so varied!

Today’s Group Trade Show 2016

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Earlier this week, we attended the Today’s Group Trade Show at the newly-opened Liverpool Exhibition Centre. Our task was the general branding of the event, from the pre-show advertisement, the towers in the own-brand area, the hanging banners in the atrium, and everything else you can think of!
I managed to get many photos from the event from the set up day, the trade show itself as well as the awards dinner from Tuesday evening.
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SET UP DAY!

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Piecing up one of the four towers in the own brand area!

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One side of one of four towers!

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Everything starting to come together!

On the set up day, a few of us from IMA headed down the exhibition centre helping to install the Today’s Own Brand area. This included four 4-sided towers, a shop, “toblerones” and much more.

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HUGE hanging banners! (two out of four of them) outside the entrance to Hall B where the event was held.

There were four of these large hanging banners in total, thankfully not installed by us! They were all slightly different but made a big impact as you walked into the exhibition centre.

We also designed this vinyl banner for the registration desk (below).

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Vinyl stickers being installed on the registration desk

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Another huge hanging banner!

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TV screen advertisements

In the main atrium of the exhibition centre, it seemed that everywhere you looked there were TV screens! This meant that we could put the Today’s branding on these too, really allowing the Today’s Group to take over the venue and make it their own for the show!

The Show!!

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One of many Today’s-branded “toblerones”

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More TV screen advertisements through the entrance to the centre

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Registration desk with the vinyl banner and TV advertising

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Another toblerone with information on the special guest for the awards dinner, Justin Moorhouse

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Molson Coor’s bar… stand!!

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Today’s Own Brand area

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Today’s Own Brand Area

The Own Brand Area had free tea and coffee from Yorkshire Tea and Nescafe, respectively, and so gave the area a sort of networking area for members and suppliers to sit and socialise. This area was a huge focus for IMA, and we were so happy with how it turned out! The stand stood out extremely well thanks to all the bright colours used!

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AB Inbev stand with some Corona deck chairs!

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Coca Cola!

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Taylor’s of Harrogate

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Emma with the Honey Monster!!

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Emma with a giant walking Bon Bon

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THE SHOW!
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Awards Dinner!

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If you have any enquiries about any of the services we offer that you have seen us do on this event, please email our Social Media Manager on emily@ima-group.co.uk and we can let you know what we can do for your business!