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2018-04-23T21:04:32.193Z
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Social media marketing requires a lot of careful planning and consideration.

When something as small as a single poorly-worded Tweet could be enough to land you in some serious trouble with your brand reputation, a solid social media approval process becomes a critical part of any marketing strategy. The problem is, it’s tough to maintain a consistent posting schedule on all your social channels when you’re constantly waiting for a thumbs-up from your approval team.

It can be a nightmare for both content creators and marketing strategists when managing the workflow of social content. Even with all the great social tools on the market, managing the approval process can be a challenge without the right plan.

There is good news–it doesn’t have to be that way.

There are plenty of moving parts to think about when putting together a social media approval process. Having the right process and tools in place could help to reduce the strain on your business in no time.

So, where do you get started?

Step 1: Define Your Approval Process

Before you start streamlining the social media approval process, you need to reach a decision on your business priorities before a post goes live. Ask yourself:

  • Who will be responsible for creating content?
  • Who’s responsible for approving that content?
  • Who is going to make sure content goes out on time?
  • What guidelines do you have for creators and approvers to follow?
  • What happens if something slips through the cracks?

If you need to send social content to your...

The need to run ads on Facebook is pretty much universal at this point.

Brands today are running brilliant campaigns across all industries, with a staggering 93% of social marketers tapping into Facebook’s robust paid ad platform at the moment.

From the insane creative freedom that Facebook offers to the ability to laser-target specific demographics, it’s no secret why these ads continue to boom.

But this boom signals a pressing issue for those running ads on Facebook.

That is, the need to optimize and go beyond the basics.

With the updated Facebook algorithm prioritizing paid content over organic reach, competition in the ads space is only going to continue to ramp up.

As a result, you need to make each and every cent of your ad spend count.

Better targeting. Compelling creatives. The works.

Even the most subtle aspects of your ads will not only impact your clicks, but your ad’s potential to be seen at all.

If you’re already running ads on Facebook but want to step up your game, we’ve got you covered. In this guide, we’re going to break down some crucial tips for fine-tuning your ads for maximum reach and engagement.

With that, let’s dive right in!

1. Refine Your Audience Targeting

When it comes to ads on Facebook, targeting is everything.

That’s not hyperbole, either....

When you think of the brands killing it on social media, the first few that come to mind are probably B2C companies (business to consumer). You rarely hear about the IT management company that’s crushing it on Twitter, or the granite manufacturer that’s dominating Instagram. But these types of B2B companies exist. The problem is they’re in the minority.

For some reason, a lot of B2B companies have either struggled to grasp social media marketing or flat out ignored it. Despite the success that B2C companies have seen with social media, B2B companies still rely on traditional tactics like cold calling and attending business networking breakfasts. Those tactics are effective, but they shouldn’t be used in place of social media.

Instead, you need to integrate social into your strategy for even better results.

If you’ve been shying away from Twitter, Facebook and Instagram because you think it won’t work for companies that serve other businesses, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity. Here’s how to create a B2B social media that will grow your brand and earn leads:

Jump to the B2B Social Media Strategy Infographic. The Biggest B2B Social Media Marketing Myth

You’ve probably heard this at some point, or even thought it yourself. Social media won’t work for me because I’m in a “boring” industry.

Erase that thought from your mind completely. Social media is not reserved for clothing and beauty companies. There are more than a billion people around the world on social media. You can bet...

Let’s be real for a second–if you’re spending even a penny on advertising, you should be considering Facebook. Why? Nearly everyone is there.

New data from eMarketer forecasts marketers to spend $21 billion on US Facebook ads in 2018. This would account for 19.6% of the market (Google claiming 37.2% of the share). And to compare Facebook’s dominance against other social media networks, total shares equal 83% of ad spend in the US.

So we can all admit Facebook ads are a pretty big deal. And that’s why we’re here to make sure your content looks pristine by using the correct Facebook ad sizes. Click the jump links below to skip ahead!

For more information on other social media image sizes, check out our always up to date guide below!

Related Article Always Up-to-Date Guide to Social Media Image Sizes Whether it’s a brand promotion, video, news update or even a meme, visual content rules the social media landscape. What Read More … Facebook Feed...

Social has shifted how agencies approach everything from community management to collaboration. A one-size-fits-all approach to winning new business no longer works.

Today the tools and platforms that you use to power your client’s social strategies and communicate success are more important than ever. And no one knows this better than the agency professionals themselves.

We recently polled our Agency Network and Twitter community to learn how Sprout has helped our partners win new clients.

1. Threefold Data-Driven Marketing

Social has helped our clients in several ways. We use Sprout for three main tasks: customer service (engagement). listening and lead generation. Packaged together, it ladders up to data-driven marketing.

– Shane Ketterman, Founder, Rewire Digital

2. Brand Building Through Impressions & Reach

Most of our clients are authors and consultants, looking to build their audience to grow speaking fees, earn media appearances and build their client base. So since direct sales attributable to social/online aren’t always possible for us, we look at key metrics like inbound speaking and media requests.

To generate those, we look at client social channels as their sizzle reel. Let’s show outlets and organizers what our client can do for their audience, both in performance and content. Social’s pivot to video has made this process even easier for us and only amplified the return on our client’s investment here.”

– Jonathan Jacobs, Partner, Digital Natives Group

3. High-Volume Workflow Management When...

The agency world is a hectic, challenging, but incredibly rewarding place. Every second has significance and your client pool is a perpetual (and never dull) juggling act.

There are no signs of things slowing down anytime soon, considering the sheer volume of work associated with managing social media on behalf of clients today.

My advice for any budding agency that’s adapting to keep up and grow their offering is this: Shift your focus. Instead of chasing exponential growth, look to the bottom line. Instead of saying “yes” to every ask, start thinking about how to say “no.”

You Can’t Say Yes All the Time

It sounds counterintuitive, but saying yes to everything isn’t a sustainable methodology.

It works well in the beginning when you’re doing anything and everything to land a client and keep them around. But eventually you’re going to agree to something that you’re not prepared for and the facade of your “yes!” organization starts to crumble.

“Yes” won’t always scale. It’s an unfortunate truth when your business model is based on the notion that you exist to serve others. But today’s agencies can’t offer everything to every client.

There’s an art and a science in saying no to client asks when you need to. It’s shouldn’t be the norm, but it should be a measure you take to guarantee the success of your organization.

Establish some clarity around why you’re saying no before you jump into declining projects. When you’re approached with a new client,...

As a company that makes social media marketing software, we’re well aware of all the different Instagram analytics tools out there. Over the years, we’ve seen new tools pop up on a seemingly daily basis.

Having all these options available is overwhelming to say the least. Especially when a lot of these tools have similar features, or only one or two of the features you actually want.

In the end, you probably signed up for dozens of trials in order to find that one tool that fits your needs. Plus, with recent changes to the API, some Instagram analytics tools no longer work, which might be why you’re reading this post!

We feel your pain.

That’s why we decided to put together a list of seven Instagram analytics tools worth trying in 2018. Rather than give you a list of tools that all pretty much do the same thing, we varied it up a bit. So whether you’re looking for a free Instagram analytics tool, something that analyzes Instagram Stories or a complete solution, we’ve got you covered.

Here’s our list of the top seven Instagram analytics tools of 2018:

1. Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a complete social media management solution for businesses of all sizes, and agencies. And we’re also the people bringing you this list, so adding ourselves is a no-brainer.

Let’s face it, you know you need to promote your business on social media. In fact, around 2.56 billion global social media users join the ranks each day on mobile, creating an astronomical audience for companies of every shape and size. The question is, which social platform should you be spending your marketing moola with?

Facebook and Twitter are essentially the crème de la crème of social networks. These senior class channels have outranked sites like Google+ and Pinterest for decades, and their versatility makes them perfect for connecting with a broad audience. Though both platforms have seen their ups and downs lately, they remain the most popular choice for many marketers–and for good reason.

Twitter and Facebook are adaptable, innovative and ready to pivot to suit the needs of customers. What’s more, Sprout Social integrates with both!

So, if both channels are so great, how do you decide between Facebook vs. Twitter, and which one you want to use?

Facebook vs. Twitter: By the Numbers

If the information produced by the comScore Digital Future report in 2016 is anything to go by, then it’s tough to find a social media channel that can out-perform Facebook in terms of users.

As the grand-daddy of the social media age, Facebook has a lead that’s seemingly...

Being on Twitter sometimes feels like you’re broadcasting into a vacuum. It seems even more like a vacuum when you’re not analyzing any of the broadcasts.

It’s time to invest time and possibly even money into using the best Twitter analytics tools. The result will be a better understanding of your social ROI and where to improve in your current strategy.

In this article, we’ll offer nine tools to analyze your Twitter account. Some of these are specific to the network, while others wrap into an overall social media management platform. A few of them specialize in live monitoring campaigns and others take a look at historical Twitter data.

Let’s be honest, it’s up to you to decide which is best for your account. You may find you need a combination of tools. If you’re just starting your research on Twitter analytics, use this guide to see what’s currently available on the market. In fact, many of these offer free tools and free trials.

1. Sprout Social

We made our own list! But hey, it’s not without good reason.

While Sprout Social is a social media management platform, it also offers robust Twitter analytics reports. Pull as many reports as you’d like and from custom time ranges–all with a few clicks. Even better, they’re designed to be presentation ready for the C-suite.

If you’re scrambling for a fresh way to approach your next Facebook campaign, you’re not alone.

Given the recent changes to the Facebook algorithm, many marketers are stuck scratching their heads when it comes to their future on the platform.

“How can I make sure my posts aren’t getting buried?”

“Should we totally give up on organic reach and go all-in on ads?”

“Which sorts of ads are going to give us the most bang for our buck, anyway?

Perhaps the best way to break down the answers to these questions is by assessing what is working for brands today.

Listen: now’s a prime time to reassess how you approach Facebook. That’s why we’ve outlined some recent success stories from brands, ranging from killer ads to smart posts that receive tons of love organically.

And with these brilliant examples from big brands in mind, you can roll out your own Facebook campaign that totally slays.

1. Airbnb

Time after time, Airbnb ticks all the boxes of how brands squeeze so much out of their Facebook presence.

Airbnb relies heavily on user-generated content from their satisfied customers to fill their feed. This allows them to show off eye-popping, exotic locations that their followers can fall in love with.

And since Facebook’s algorithm favors visual content over links, such a strategy spells good news for their organic reach.

Additionally, the brand uses any given campaign as an opportunity to go back-and-forth with their...

If you hang around a social media marketer long enough, you’re bound to hear the term social media influencers tossed around in conversation. Social media influencers are the bread and butter to marketing strategies and help brands build valuable relationships on social media platforms.

Most social media managers prize their social media influencers because they can drive engagement and word-of-mouth communication to your brand at a higher rate than standard organic methods. At the same time, some managers are hesitant to deem someone a social media influencer just because they have thousands of followers.

There has to be a middle ground toward influencer marketing and it starts with you understanding the goals of your brand and what the influencer will accomplish. Creating goals and outlining each party’s responsibilities, possibly including it in a social media proposal, is essential to see results.

What Are Social Media Influencers?

Social media influencers are power users who can help your potential customers make a buying decision through social networking. Whether they’re a blogger, product reviewer, industry expert or a trusted source of information, your social media influencers are unique to your field and product or service.

For example, if you’re trying to find a social media influencer on grilling and barbecuing, you’ll want people such as:

  • Food critics in the industry
  • People with popular outdoor cooking Instagram accounts
  • Grilling bloggers who write for major recipe sites
  • Grill and barbecue pit builders
  • Ribs and barbecue contest judges
  • TV chef personalities (i.e. someone who won Chopped)

The various Instagram ad sizes and specs are daunting to the majority of us. Updates, new feature releases and much more make this a task not suitable for the faint of heart.

Some of us have our in-house documents floating around with the appropriate Instagram ad sizes–but who updates it and keeps track of the changes? That’s where we come in. Let us give you a bookmarkable blog post that includes everything for your Instagram needs.

Here’s the complete list of Instagram ad sizes and specs for 2018:

Instagram Image Ad Sizes

In the incredibly short time span of March to September last year, Instagram monthly advertisers grew from 1 million to more than 2 million. Marketers see Instagram as advertising gold because of the unique opportunities to engage with users.

And for Instagram image ads, there’s nothing quite like taking up the majority of a device’s real estate with a single ad. Think about it–Instagram is really the only “one at a time” scrolling social media platform–so ads get users full attention.

Easier said than done–right? Well let us help you by getting the correct image sizes for Instagram ads. The three Instagram image ad sizes include:

Instagram Landscape Image: 1200 x 628

Instagram landscape images are typically wider and do not take up the traditional full square of the Instagram post. The Chicago School of...

Remember that old phrase “don’t judge a book by its cover?”

Well, that doesn’t apply in the business world.

Even though you always help customers better understand your brand through content and storytelling, the first impression they get of your company will always be visual. Between logos, website layouts or your Facebook cover photo, it’s the images that lay the foundation for your online reputation.

That’s why having the right Facebook cover photo size let’s you demonstrate your personality, brand story and even purpose as a company. With the wrong images, you’ll look unprofessional and unprepared.

The good news? All you need for a great social experience is a little industry know-how, and a few simple tips.

Choosing the Right Facebook Cover Photo Size

The right Facebook cover photo size is 820 pixels wide by 312 pixels tall on desktop. However, mobile users will see 640 pixels wide by 360 pixels tall. The correct Facebook cover photo is the first step to portraying the right image on social media.

Too big, and important parts of your content will get cropped out. Too small, and your image will look stretched and pixelated. You need an image with Goldilocks potential, something that’s just right. Here’s some more notes on having the best Facebook cover photo:

  • You must have a minimum size of 400...

Spring is officially here! What better time to brush up on your social skills? Set some time aside for yourself this month to get some professional development in and join #SproutChat on Twitter to learn about a new social media topic or share best practices about one you’re an expert in.

This month at #SproutChat we’ll be covering an array of topics—everything from visual marketing to paid social media to nailing customer care.

Whether you’re well into your career or a novice in social, there’s something for everyone this month.

Wednesday, April 4

“Pay to play” is a commonly referenced phrase in social media marketing, but how do get started with this marketing tactic? Special guest, Amelia Tran, joins the chat to share insights on which platforms will benefit your brand with paid support and how to get started putting dollars behind your posts.

Add event to calendar

Apple   Google   Outlook   Outlook.com   Yahoo

Wednesday, April 11

When you’re a brand on social, it’s important to have your customer care strategy on point. This week at #SproutChat, we’ll be joined by Sprout All Star,...

Did you know that when it comes to social media metrics, there are hundreds you could be analyzing? But the real question is, do you know where to find them and are they all necessary for your business? In this post, we’re going to look at the metrics you can gather from the top social networks and which ones matter most for your business.

Sprout features mentioned in this article:

What Are Social Media Metrics?

Social media metrics are data and statistics that give you insights into your social media marketing performance.

While some social media marketing metrics are universal, there are also platform specific metrics you need to learn. Plus, some data is calculated differently depending on the platform and social media metrics tools you’re using.

But don’t worry, we have you covered. We’re going to break down all of the social media metrics you need to know:

Official Social Media Metrics

First, let’s look at the metrics you can get directly from the top social networks. Here’s how you find them and what you can learn from them.

Facebook Insights Metrics

Facebook offers the most comprehensive metrics for business pages. You can start by going to the Platform Insights page to see a list of all of your Facebook Pages currently tracking metrics.

When you click on the Page you want to analyze, you will be taken to the Facebook insights...

If you’ve been on Instagram recently, you’ll notice you probably haven’t received as many likes or comments as you did a year ago. When the Instagram algorithm was adjusted from chronological to algorithmic, many people worried engagement rates would drop.

Instagram’s own press release talked about favoring the moments you care about most, much like how Facebook’s algorithm operates.

So how does your brand stay present in users’ feeds without having to rely on ads? Luckily, there are some work arounds to get your Instagram posts visible.

Here are 14 ways you can make the Instagram algorithm work in your favor:

1. Invest in a Photographer or Videographer

Quality reigns supreme on Instagram. When most of the app’s real estate is taken up by visual media, it makes sense to hire a professional if you need one. Your photography needs to be eye-catching and designed for storytelling.

Instagram video posts are now on auto-play. Using videos gives you a slight leg up in grabbing those who are browsing their feed.

Playing bobarista this morning 🤗 Don't know...

Twitter is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world. This simple, but effective sharing channel has:

It’s no wonder so many companies want to tap into the potential of Twitter for their own social strategies. The fast-paced nature of this platform means that it’s a great way for brands to start building a stronger online presence. The trouble is, most companies don’t know how to get the most turnaround for their Tweets.

Learning how to track the right twitter metrics could help you make insightful decisions about your future marketing campaigns. The more you learn about your audience, the more you can transform every interaction into an actionable strategy for success.

So, which metrics should you start with?

1. Average Tweet Performance

Keeping track of your social media success isn’t always as simple as it seems. While you might be everyone’s favorite company on Twitter one day, you could lose their attention the next. This means it’s challenging for many brands to compare performance on the platform from one week to the next.

Having a solid benchmark in place is great for when you want to highlight the potential of your Twitter campaign to executives and shareholders. With that in mind, when it comes to measuring Twitter metrics, start by looking at averages.

If you evaluate your average engagement rate, average shares and average re-tweet...

You pour your time and energy into yet another piece of content, and then it happens.

Again.

No shares. No comments. Just crickets.

If this scenario sounds familiar, you’re certainly not alone.

The fact that 50% of content receives less than eight shares is a stark reminder that the success of our content marketing ultimately boils down to what we do after we hit “publish.”

Given the average blog post takes well over 3 hours to write according to Orbit Media, marketers should do everything they can to score a better ROI for their content creation. This rings true for written posts, podcasts, video scripts and everything in-between.

And don’t assume you’re a lousy content creator, either.Chances are you have the chops, but you’re just not giving your content that much-needed boost it deserves.

With the right content amplification tools and tactics, you can do exactly that without reinventing the wheel. If you want to ensure that your content is being seen by as many hungry readers (or viewers) as possible, consider combining the following nine strategies to get started:

1. Smarter Scheduling

Pushing your content to social media is a no-brainer, but it’s fine details of how much and how often that go overlooked.

For example, if you’re solely publishing your pieces of content to Twitter or...

What are your top performing Tweets? What time of day do your Instagram posts get the most engagement? Is your Facebook marketing strategy translating to traffic and leads? If you’re not using social media analytics tools, you’ll probably have a hard time answering these questions.

By now, most marketers understand the need for tools to measure their efforts. But as social media marketing has grown, the number of tools available to analyze your efforts has skyrocketed. At one point, you could probably name all the major social media analytics tools out there. Fast forward to today, and it seems like there’s a new tool released every day.

With all the options available, the question is what is the best social media analytics tool for your brand? Whether you want data on the performance of a specific campaign, Instagram and Snapchat stories or an overview of all your profiles, we’ve got you covered. Here are eight social media analytics tools to add to your arsenal:

1. Sprout Social

Obviously, we couldn’t put together a list of the best social media analytics tools without mentioning our own. Every brand should have a dedicated social media management tool. With Sprout’s social media analytics, you can measure performance across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn, all within a single platform. Having all...

We’ve all done it. No one is blaming you. But you skip through Instagram Stories at lightning speeds. So why do you think your customers are stopping to listen to you?

Well they might not be stopping–at all. In fact, unofficial data from your teenager’s opinions just discovered they skip all your Instagram Stories ads without a second thought. Wow, that hurts.

Don’t raise that well-marketed white flag that took two quarters of brainstorming just yet. With the right visual content strategy, you can “stop the skip” and get users engaged with your Instagram Stories. It may take some sneaky design tricks to get users to stop and listen, but it’s possible to get users watching.

Here are five reasons why your Instagram Stories are failing, and how to fix them:

1. Your Instagram Images or Videos Stink

OK–we might’ve just lost a few friends with that headline, but we promise we’ll say nice things after you read this! Not to get too bratty, but a lot of Instagram Stories are bad. And by bad, we mean they don’t prompt viewers to do anything.

Instagram provides brands a massive opportunity to visually highlight products, services and their overall brand. We shouldn’t blame poor visuals on boring industries because there’s plenty of organizations destroying it on Instagram Stories.

Pantone, a manufacturer of colored prints, plastics and fabrics, relies heavily on it’s core company objective–providing exact colors for businesses. And on Instagram Stories, they know how to keep...