The Art of Using Humor to Impact and Influence

It’s not secret that any form of content containing some kind of emotion is beneficial to your brand, but if you can make your consumers laugh then you’ve got a great chance of being an unquestionably successful.

As we live in a very serious world, most brands needlessly ignore humor. Wait, but why? Humor provides us with a break from the seriousness surrounding us. Incorporating humor with your social media strategy is a fantastic way to grab your audience’s attention. Do you know someone that can resist a funny tweet, or a clever Facebook post?

Humor is an art and must be honed. While social media can be a fantastic tool to create a witty persona, there is an extremely thin line between comedy and tragedy, which is often dangerous for your brand to thread if used negligently. Here are some funny examples of brands that failed to make their consumers laugh.

IHOP

Although known for their dicey tweets, IHOP crossed the line when they posted this sexist tweet to all of their followers.

Fans immediately responded to the inappropriate tweet by calling IHOP out for being misogynistic. Stray away from profoundly offensive messages, especially when linking your product or service to human body parts.

The Home Depot

That’s a great idea: don’t be racist!

Now, lets take a look at brands that successfully implemented humor across social media channels.

Old Spice

When thinking of brands that have a funny social media presence, Old Spice comes to mind. With ridiculous, yet original, content, the brand successfully created a comedy character that appears consistently over all of the brand’s media channels, including an Instagram video.

Taco Bell

Taco Bell’s social media accounts are no different. Witty one-liners and crafty photo updates sure make its audience chuckle.

So what makes these brands successful and funny?

While humor is subjective (please don’t expect it to please everyone), here are some keys to being funny and receiving a positive response from your consumers.

  1. Understand your target audience

The most important factor to being humorous is to understand your target audience and what would be funny to them. By doing so, your consumers will certainly remember you and freely share your content.

  1. Keep your overall image in mind

Don’t be funny just for the sake of being funny. You need to make sure the humor fits within the context of your brand; otherwise it just won’t make any sense.

  1. Be consistent

Your brand does not need to be funny across all your social media channels. But, don’t go around trying to make fun of politicians, especially when you’re in the food industry. Be smart in picking things to poke fun at.

  1. Be tasteful

Steer clear of controversial topics and jokes in bad taste. For example, a tweet from male fashion brand, Kenneth Cole, compared their new clothing collection to civil unrest in Cairo, Egypt. This is a complete no-no.

5. Keep it simple

The best humor comes naturally. You don’t need to have a standup routine just to get a laugh from your consumers. Keep your posts short and sweet.

Humor is undeniably a risky path to travel, but if done right, it could separate your brand from your competition, who solely blast their social media channels with product and business information.

You have an incredible power to influence, and even change, brand perception. So your content must do more than just educate consumers about your product; try having fun with your content. Entertain and captivate your audience, and then watch the number of your followers rise!

What’s your perspective on brands using humor on social media? If you’ve got some great examples (or fails), comment and share the links below!

Images sourced within.

The Power of Visual Social Media Platforms. What’s better for you?

Social-Media-Today

The social media is a new and upcoming form of advertising and marketing. There are various platforms of social media that are now being widely used in the business world as a marketing tool. They all seem to be relatively successful and ,more importantly, very promising for the future. However, it is important to note that people, nowadays, tent to shift from social media to visual social media. When we refer to  visual social media, we are talking about social media that are mainly focused on the visual content that is being shared. In other words, the images and videos that are being posted. This transition is  some of the best news for small business, as it gives companies the opportunity to be more efficient and direct in their marketing. “A picture is worth a thousand words”; an old English idiom that perfectly illustrates the reasoning of the above statement and this transition that we are experiencing today.

What is the best platform for you?social-media-networks-icons-ss-1920

There is big number of visual social media platforms in the market and each one of them has some unique characteristics, advantages and disadvantages.

At the beginning, we all have the same question and that is” which social platform is the right one for my brand?”.  Well, most of the people would say that any brand can be successful with any kind of platform, as long as it is being used correctly.

My opinion is that the only person who knows the answer to that question is YOUR SELF. Yet, don’t panic,  we are here to provide you with the necessary information and guidance, so that you can make a rational decision. The list below contains some of the characteristics that you need to identify for your company in order to help you detect which platform suits your brand the best.

More specifically, you need to identify the demographics of your target group and compare and contrast them with the demographics of the platforms that you are interest in.

One Compelling Example maxresdefault

In this section we will compare Facebook and Instagram with a goal to determine which platform matches better the characteristics of an imaginary company’s target group. There are only 3 steps that we need to follow in order to succeed in this procedure. The first one is to correctly identify OUR audience and target group, the second one is to compare it with the demographics of each of the platforms that we are targeting and the last one is to make the right connections and conclusions.

 Step 1

Let’s  say that the company sells men’s grooming products. Taking this into consideration, we realize that this company’s target group is mainly men of age 20 and older.

Step 2

By using the information from the graphs below, we recognize that Facebook’s audience matches better the characteristics of our company’s audience for the following two reasons:

  1. There is a much larger percentage of people of age 30 and older that use Facebook than Instagram.
  2. And more importantly, 66% of the men use Facebook, while only 22% of the male population uses Instagram

Step 3

In the last step, which is probably the hardest and most important one, we have to make the right conclusions and decisions. To do that, we have to look at every single detail regarding our target group and make sure that we are doing the right research. In other words, the fact the Facebook has, by far, the most users shouldn’t be a reason for us to choose Facebook for our platform. We are looking for more detailed and specific connections in our comparisons.

 

Social-Demographics-facebook

To sum up…

We realize that the social media is definitely the right spot for small businesses to market their brands in. Yet, furthermore, we detect that visual social media platforms are even better and more successful advertising platforms for businesses.  They hide a lot of potential and their future is very encouraging.

Moreover, we discussed about what’s the “best” social media platform for your brand and we came to the agreement that YOU are the right person to make this decision. I promise that if you follow the above formula carefully and also listen to your feelings, then you will be able to make the right decision.

Images sourced within.

The Influential Figures of Sports

lebron-james-employee-of-the-year

The field of sports has always been one of the most successful and influential industries in modern society.  Advertising and marketing evolve at an extremely fast pace, yet athletes and major, sports-affiliated companies have always been by their side. The past has shown that the impact of the athletes and sport organizations exceeds the sport industry. Specifically, we have seen all stars for every sport participating in campaigns related to the food and fashion industries, the car industry and many more. In other words, if you are a small business or a startup company and you are trying to make a name for yourself, there’s no better way than to have a sports figure join your team.

Who are the top influencers in the Sport Industry?

As we would all imagine, the most influential athletes on social media are those who are also the best, most successful and well known in the sport industry. They are the figures that the biggest companies fight to partner and work with. According to Verge Campus, the top five most influential athletes from 2015 are the following: in fifth place is Michael Jordan, who despite the fact is not active anymore, is an icon that has tremendous influence over many different social groups. Right above him is Stephen Curry, who many call “the next Michael Jordan.” As an amazing person with his talent and genuine character, he inspires a lot of people. Next on the list is probably the most popular soccer player of the modern world, Cristiano Ronaldo. He is an athlete that managed to combine his success in soccer with his natural beauty and has become one of the most coveted sport figures. Second comes Conor McGregor, a mixed martial art athlete, who everyone has been talking about the past two years. His unique and authentic personality has dramatically increased the popularity of both himself and the UFC. On the top of the list is Tom Brady, probably the best quarterback to ever play the game of football. He’s so influential that he managed to “sell” a predominantly female brand, “UGG,” to men.

To sum up, we realize that the most influential people in the industry of sports are the ones that combine success with something else. In each case, that “something else” is different. Your job will be to identify it and eventually decide whether it’s something that expresses you and your company.

How are you going to create partnerships?

Many of you would say “But how am I going to get LeBron James, Cam Newton, Rafael Nadal or anyone that famous to join my team?” Well, the truth is that you don’t need to. You don’t need the most famous and successful athletes for your campaign, social media page or account to promote your company. Any regular athlete with the right personality, who shares the same values and ethics with you, will most definitely have the right connections to get you and your company at the desirable position. He or she can be the vehicle you need to expand to new heights.

There are many examples and success stories of start up companies that had the chance to partner up with less known athletes and made it to the big scene. It is important to understand what a sport figure brings to the table. Besides their very important fan base and followers on social media, it’s also their teammates and their connections and lastly their influence within their sport.

One of the many examples that illustrate the above argument is that of the start up company named PRO-NRG after their main product. PRO-NRG is a startup company that specializes in performance recovery drinks. The founder of the product and owner of the startup, Tania Patruno, was very familiar and experienced with the market. She knew that in order to overcome the competition, she would need a person-ideal to market her product. She found that person in the face of Brandon Jacobs, a former NFL player. He wasn’t an extremely famous athlete; yet, just with his connections and especially with the influence on his teammates and the rest of the athletes in the NFL, he was able to market and promote this product in the best possible way. Brandon Jacobs was certainly they key for the success of this product and start up company.

There are many success stories that prove that you don’t necessarily need the top five or twenty most influential people of sports. You just need to find the perfect fit for you and your company. In other words, you need to find the person with whom you share the same ideals and more importantly the person who is influential to the group of people that you consider your target group.

Image Sourced here.

The Perfect Match

perfect-match

Finding the perfect match is hard, it takes time and effort. Sometimes things just flawlessly fit together and other times it takes significantly more work.

Everyone, at one point or another, has played the word association game. If someone says “Tell me the first word that comes to mind when I say ‘blue”, most people will respond with ‘sky’. The same idea applies to people and brands.  Every person and brand has that one main identifying quality.

When brands go out in search of an influencer in which to partner with, the first step always seems to be the obvious match. But what if it’s not that simple? When brands are looking for influencers and endorsers, it goes well beyond the initial identity.

When It Worked: The Power (Couple) Play

Tom Brady, the New England Patriots quarterback, is the face of football, so his deal with Under Armour seems like a seamless fit. He’s active, athletic and clearly an obvious (and ideal) consumer. What about his relationship with UGG Australia? What makes the ‘face of football’ a good fashion influencer? For those who don’t know, Tom Brady is married to one of the highest earning super models, Gisele Bundchen. Their marriage has allowed him to bridge the gap into the fashion industry. Since the partnership with Tom Brady, UGG has been able to increase their number of customers and sales, drawing from Brady’s fan base and the male population as a whole. The power couple’s status also extends to Gisele’s modeling career. She just signed a contract, breaking into the sports modeling industry, to be a face of the Women’s Under Armour Campaign, which one can only assume stems from her clear tie to the athletic community.

When It Didn’t Work: The Girl Who Doesn’t Drink

While some of these influencers are a perfect match, others are not. When Midori Liquor was looking for a spokesperson for their melon liquor, they turned to the elite Kardashian family, specifically Kim Kardashian (Now Kim Kardashian West). They assumed her lavish life-style, nightclub appearance and socialite status would attract a large audience to the product. One problem – Kim Kardashian does not drink. DailyMail obtained a quote in which Kim herself states, “Well, I’ve never really been a drinker. I hate the taste of alcohol.” Just a little outside knowledge and the consumer would realize that Kim Kardashian, in fact, does not drink Midori as much as was portrayed by the campaign. To those who follow Kim’s every move, her endorsing alcohol would be like a bald man endorsing hair dye. It just doesn’t work.

How do brands ensure that they have the perfect match?

In order to ensure that the perfect match is created, brands need to start with the obvious. Brands should think of entering the relationship with an influencer like a funnel. You want to move from the very high level of association to the finite details of their personal mission and values.

Below outlines how someone may choose whether or not to pair with Victoria Beckham. This chart serves as a basic outline for any brand to use when identifying an influencer. If at any time the brand and the person seem to be on two different pages, it may be time to reconsider.

Chart

While a quick google search can reveal a majority of these attributes and answers, an interview along with in depth research will yield the best results. Brands need to ensure that they are connected to their influencer. The brand needs to have some form of overlap in order for there to be an understanding and reality.

ASK: Could I see this person representing this brand in their daily life without changing a thing?

 

Image Sourced Here

Top Influencers in the Beauty Industry

With the rise of social media and the increasing digital space, it’s no wonder that top beauty brands are the first to jump on the influencer trend. The use of bloggers, vloggers and social media influencers has propelled both high-end and drugstore beauty brands to reach a larger and more diverse audience. In 2015 top brands such as L’oreal, Cover Girl and Bobbi Brown created strictly digital marketing plans to launch their new products to customers. Their success would not have been possible had they not reached out and partnered with those that are already succeeding in the digital and social media world.

When determining what type of individual to reach out to in regards to representing your beauty product or brand, it’s imperative that you consider how you want to market the brand. Customers will turn to different types of media outlets when they are looking for different things.

Blogging allows customers to read about and digest the review that an influencer has posted about the product. Although digital, it is comparatively similar to traditional reading so it’s no surprise that bloggers continue to reach an older audience.

On the other hand, maybe you’re looking for more of a candid “on the spot” review or “how to” tutorial using your product. Vlogging allows customers to connect more personally with their influencer. Through the camera, the audience feels like they are experiencing the review along with the influencer. The vlogging scene generally reaches a younger demographic because of the Millennial generation’s need for constant interaction. Vloggers are also extremely present on social media because it’s the outlet that they use to reach their audience as well (primarily through YouTube).

So where are these influencers and how do you reach them?

According to Style Caster Media Group the top US based beauty bloggers include Shea Marie of Peace Love Shea, Jacey Duprie of Damsel in Dior and Serena Goh of The Spicy Stiletto. The Top US based beauty vlogging world is dominated by Los Angeles based Michelle Phan as she continues to top the charts boasting 8 million subscribers on her YouTube channel. Each video she posts reaches an average of 1-3 million views. Her high numbers are followed closely behind with vlogger Andrea Brooks reaching 3.7 million subscribers and Dulce Candy reaching 2 million subscribers.
Regardless of which influencer you use, the key to utilizing an influencer for all that they have to offer is through their social media reach. Although having a blogger write a post about your brand or a vlogger posting a review on YouTube is important, social media is unique and necessary because of how instant it reaches an audience.

Let’s return back to Michelle Phan. The 28 year old has over 2.1 million Instagram followers and 678K Twitter followers. For every video she posts, she will post a corresponding tweet or picture to advertise her new video. It’s likely that even customers that do not subscribe to her on YouTube will follow her on social media platforms. With this your product or brand has the potential to reach a large number of additional customers almost instantly. If customers are then interested in the product they can follow through and see how Michelle has used the product in her videos.

The same can be said about Shea Marie boasting 958K Instagram followers. Her past work with brands has shown that often beauty brands will choose to market their product exclusively on her social media channels because of her high numbers and instant reach they can access.

So what does this all mean for new beauty products or brands trying to break through the scene?

First you must consider what type of audience you want to target. Stick to the blogging scene for an older mature audience and turn towards the vlogging scene for millennials and younger generations because of their need for that extra personality from their infleuncer.

Second, consider your influencers interaction with social media in every aspect of your marketing strategy. Whether this means that you work with an influencer strictly through social media or follow up to ensure that they post about their review on social media, it’s imperative to reach a wider audience and gain brand recognition among your audience.

Finally, don’t forget to recognize that sometimes the best type of marketing you can do is through strictly social media and continue to utilize and monitor who the new “it girl” is.

All images sourced here