On December 11th, Instagram will be deprecating some features within their existing API. The following features will be unavailable after that date:
Commenting – to post and delete comments on a user’s behalf on owned media
Public Content – to read any public profile info and media on a user’s behalf
Likes – to like and unlike media on a user’s behalf
Subscriptions – to receive notifications when media is posted
In advance of this release, we’ve updated our platform enabling you to continue to create hashtag campaigns.
In order to create new Instagram hashtag campaigns or keep your existing ones running, you will first need to make sure your Instagram account is a business account. Here’s a quick tutorial from Instagram – Creating a Business Profile on Instagram.
Now, you’re all set to create new Instagram hashtag promotions in the Votigo platform. We’ve added a quick authentication button within each promotion type –
NOTE: As part of this update, content posted on Instagram will be required to include a @mention of your brand in order for Instagram to pass it to Votigo.
Existing Campaigns If you are currently running a Votigo campaign that is accepting hashtag entries from Instagram, you will first need to complete the steps noted above to create an Instagram business profile and connect it to your Facebook page, then follow the steps below –
Login to Votigo click the Social Channels tab, select the Instagram account and click the uninstall button.
Install your Instagram business account
Click the Campaigns tab, select your promotion, navigate to the Publish tab and unpublish / republish the promotion
Note: As with new promotions, entries will be required to include a @mention of your brand. You may need to update your user facing copy to communicate this to entrants. All content posted prior to this update will be retained in your promotion.
If you have any questions, please reach out to our support team.
Instagram recently announced changes to their API platform with some features being disabled immediately and others removed in the near future.
Let’s review the changes and what they mean for your campaigns running on Votigo –
The following capabilities will be disabled immediately (previously set for July 31, 2018 or December 11, 2018 deprecation):
Follower List – to read the list of followers and followed-by users
Relationships – to follow and unfollow accounts on a user’s behalf
Commenting on Public Content – to post and delete comments on a user’s behalf on public media
Likes – to like and unlike media on a user’s behalf
Subscriptions – to receive notifications when media is posted
Users Information – to search for and view users’ public content
Some information on Public Content returned through hashtag and location search – Name, Bio, Comments, Commenters, Follower Count, Following Count, Post Count, and Profile Picture
The following will be deprecated according to the timeline in the near future:
Public Content – all remaining capabilities to read public media on a user’s behalf on December 11, 2018
Basic – to read a user’s own profile info and media in early 2020
The only impact this will have on your Votigo campaigns is the ability to require that a user is following the brand in order to submit and entry via hashtag. Unfortunately we can no longer access their follow list.
You will still be able to create an Instagram photo or video contest within the Votigo platform. All public posts containing your promotion specific hashtag will be pulled into our system.
Votigo Powers the #MyGivingStory UGC Contest for 92Y and #GivingTuesday
#MyGivingStory contest acquires over 800 submissions in the first two weeks.
Boulder, CO – November 16, 2017
Votigo, the leader in online promotions, announced today that it successfully launched the #MyGivingStory campaign, a social media storytelling contest created in a partnership between the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the 92 Street Y in New York City and as part of the lead up to GivingTuesday on November 28, 2017. The goal of the campaign is to deepen the conversation around why giving back is meaningful to individuals and what inspires them to give, whether it is time or money or goods or something else. The contest asks “everyday givers” to submit their own story and an optional photo or video. The stories are displayed in an online gallery of stories, where the public can vote for their favorites. This voting will determine the finalists and the winner(s) will receive grant money to be given to the nonprofit organization of their choice. Two first place winners will grant $10,000 each. Two second place winners will grant $5,000 each. And two third place winners will grant $2,500 each. In addition to those grand prizes, the contest offers other incentives and prizes, include a bi-weekly sweepstakes for a small grant, the Most Popular NonProfit Award, and an Excellence in Spanish award.
“We are thrilled with the outcome of the contest both in terms of the heartwarming and inspiring quality of the storiest we have received, as well as the quality of Votigo’s platform and professional services.” says Abby Graf Subak, organizer of the #MyGivingStory at 92Y,” “… throughout this whole process Votigo has been excellent to work with in helping us to achieve our goals. So many of our world’s important conversations now take place online and in social media. It is the Votigo platform that has allowed us to create a meaningful way to engage people and organizations online.”
Votigo created a custom User-Generated Content Photo / Video / Essay Contest microsite that allows users to upload directly from their computer, smartphone, or tablet and then easily share their stories and spark conversations across Twitter and Facebook. These written stories, photos, and videos are being shared not only on the platform, but also by nonprofit organizations and the GivingTuesday organizers to remind people of the impact their giving can have. The contest is open to residents of the USA and available in English and Spanish.
“We were extremely excited when 92Y approached us to design, build and administer the contest. We love what 92Y is doing with their #MyGivingStory and Giving Tuesday and we’re thrilled our technology and expertise was able to help them achieve their marketing needs.” said Jim Risner, Co-CEO of Votigo.
Campaign Results (in only the first two weeks of the campaign) :
800+ High Quality Video, Photo, and Essay submissions
290,000 Page Views
230 Social Shares
The contest remains open to submissions until November 30 at midnight, with voting continuing through Dec 7. We hope that this is a win-win for individual storytellers and organizations. Even if they don’t win one of the grand prizes, they will have shared their stories, and hopefully inspired many others to give, too.
With Votigo’s Online Promotions Platform and professional services, businesses and non-profit organizations have an unmatched tool for acquiring and engaging customers across social channels, the Web, and Mobile devices. Brands and Organizations can run promotions, user-generated content contests, sweepstakes, and other interactive marketing campaigns that help to spread awareness of their campaign, acquire new customers, and engage existing customers.
92nd Street Y is a center for the arts and innovation, a convener of ideas, and an incubator for creativity. Founded in 1874, it seeks to create, provide and disseminate programs of distinction that foster the physical and mental growth of people throughout their lives. 92Y offers thousands of programs from its New York headquarters and creates community far beyond its four walls, bringing people from all over the world together through innovations like the award-winning #GivingTuesday and the Social Good Summit. It’s transforming the way people share ideas and translate them into action all over the world. All of 92Y’s programming is built on a foundation of Jewish values, including the capacity of civil dialogue to change minds; the potential of education and the arts to change lives; and a commitment to welcoming and serving people of all ages, races, religions and ethnicities.
#GivingTuesday is an international day of philanthropy, originally established as a refocusing on the season of giving, after the consumerism of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Since its inception, #GivingTuesday has grown into a global movement with hundreds of thousands of organizations and individuals participating, generating hundreds of millions of dollars for good causes worldwide.
Votigo is a leading online promotions company with a Software-as-a-Service platform and professional services that supports premium, full-service solutions and easy-to-use self-service tools for brands and their agencies including Live Nation, State Farm, Dos Equis, A+E Networks, and Starwood. Votigo’s technology platform allows brands, agencies and enterprises to acquire, engage, and manage their customers across major Social Networks, the Web, and Mobile. Founded in 2006, Votigo has offices located in Boulder, Colorado; San Francisco Bay Area, and Hyderabad, India. Votigo made the Inc. 500||5000 list of fastest growing private companies in America in 2013 and 2012.
Running a Back-To-School contest or sweepstakes is a great way to engage your social media audience during a peak retail window. As students and parents rush to prepare for the new school year, they’re looking for inspiration and offers that will help them make purchase decisions. And with so many brands competing for their attention, giving this audience a reason to engage with your brand early on gives you a better chance of building a relationship that will last well beyond the Fall. The point is, Back-To-School is Around-The-Corner so it’s time to jump on it.
The good news is there are a lot of ways to break into the back-to-school conversation, no matter what your brand’s product or service offering is. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Visual Marketing Campaigns. Even though attention is starting to focus forward into the school year, there’s still a great opportunity to invite users to share their summer fun with your brand’s community for a chance to win a relevant back-to-school prize. Run a photo or video contest where people can submit their content for a chance to win. Registration will be required for entry, allowing you to continue to grow your marketing communications database.
Instant Win or Hashtag Promo with a Discount Code. Drive traffic to both eComm and Brick & Mortar purchase settings by running an instant win or hashtag campaign where all winners receive a discount code towards the purchase of a product or service that fits into the back-to-school landscape.
Unsure of where to run your promotion? Facebook Contests are a great way to reach a wide range of customers, while Instagram or Twitter will each reach a different demographic. Maybe you want to capture customers who are already visiting your site – in which case a contest microsite would be more relevant.
Struggling to figure out how to insert your brand into the Back-To-School conversation? Our Customer Success team will help you strategize on the best way to leverage this energetic shopping window in a way that makes the most sense for your brand. Contact Us to learn more or to schedule a demo with an Account Representative.
A Facebook Contest or Sweepstakes is a great way to generate more ‘likes’ for your brand, engage your audience and spread brand awareness. And the good news is, it doesn’t have to be complicated! Follow these 8 Steps for Running a Successful Facebook Contest or Sweepstakes and watch the entries roll in!
Step 1: Determine Your Objectives
Having a clear idea of what you want to accomplish with your promotion will help determine if a contest or a sweepstakes is right for your brand. For example, if a high number of entries is your goal, an enter-to-win sweepstakes is probably going to receive the most entries, since they have the lowest barrier to entry on the social promotions spectrum.
Step 2: Outline The Promotion Details
This includes defining the timing of your campaign, how winners will be determined, what your prize is, and a variety of other considerations. For example: What information do you want to collect during registration? How do you want to use that information down the line for future marketing purposes?
Step 3: Follow The Rules
When running a Facebook promotion, it’s important to follow their guidelines. The team here at Votigo makes it a point to stay completely on top of all of Facebook’s rules and regulations, and we’ll always make sure that the campaigns that you run with us comply with them. In addition to Facebook’s promotional guidelines, you’ll also want to make sure that you create your own contest or sweepstakes rules and make sure that you are compliance with any relevant state or federal regulations. This is also something that Votigo can help with so just let us know if you need that!
Step 4: Design Graphics
Depending on your specific promotion and what time of features you are using, this can vary from a simple header graphic to more advanced design and customization. Either way, a few general rules will always apply: Make sure the imagery is eye-catching and inviting to the user and make sure it conveys the important details for the campaign like how to enter, what you can win, etc…
Step 5: Launch!
Once your promotion has been designed and set up, it’s time to launch! Make sure you test the user flow to make sure it’s exactly how you want it, and that it’s clear for users to understand. Once all of these pieces are in place, it’s time to publish your promotion to your Facebook page and start getting more engagement with your fans!
Step 6: Promote Your Promotion
You’ll want to actively promote your promotion in order to get entries and votes. Rely on all the channels you typically use to communicate with your audience (like social media, email newsletter etc…) in order to let them know about the campaign.
Step 7: Moderate and Manage
After your promotion has launched, you need to continue to manage it. This will depend on the format of your campaign but for example, if you’ve asked people to submit photos in order to enter, part of your campaign management will involve pre-screening these photos to make sure they’re appropriate. You’ll also want to keep an eye on entries to make sure that they are coming in steadily, and adjust your promotion efforts accordingly if needed.
Step 8: Use the Results
Running a Facebook contest or sweepstakes is a great way to get leads and quality user-generated content, so make sure you use your results! Nurture new leads with an email campaign or another promotion. Get creative with how you use any photos or videos that were collected during the campaign. Use the information you collect during registration to learn more about your audience and tailor future marketing activations based on this knowledge.
Ready to put these tips into practice with your next Facebook promotion? Click here to speak with an Account Representative today!
Keywords are the basic foundation of any SEO strategy, and they are typically used as topical concepts to cover throughout your content. All too often, they’re simply used as guideposts that can help you outline your content’s topics of discussion.
To use keywords in such a way, is to waste their true potential. Instead, content creators and SEO professionals should be looking at the intent behind the keyword. What was the searcher’s purpose when they entered that phrase or topic into Google? Join us as we discuss finding intent and applying it to your strategies.
Understanding User Intent
Every single person that uses a search engine has some kind of intent behind their inquiry. They don’t just type in something because they feel like it. They have a reason behind their search. Google seeks to understand this intent and provide results in the SERPs that meet the needs of that search.
Navigational – The searcher is looking for a specific website, but they don’t know the URL, or they’d rather do it this way.
Informational – These are searches that result when people are looking for information or answers about a specific topic. A search like top 10 hosts, for example, would be informational in nature.
Transactional – This is when someone is ready to purchase a product, find a local company, sign up for a subscription, etc. They have a specific product or type of product in mind, and they’re ready to buy.
Knowing this, you can use your analytics, your keyword research, and various queries around your brand or industry to better understand which type of intent your keywords have behind them.
Applying User Intent to your Keyword Strategy
Doing your own research into specific keywords or intent begins with understanding the meaning behind the concepts your customers are searching for. You should also target long-tail keyword variations, which reveal intent far more than a single word or concept.
For example, if I were to search for “roaches,” then most of the searches will incorporate something about extermination. From this, you could infer than people searching for “roaches” are most likely looking for a solution on how to get rid of them.
It’s also worth noting that searchers tend to go through these categories, one-by-one, when they are on the journey towards making a purchase. Knowing their intent can also give you an idea of where they stand in your sales funnel.
You can use this as an opportunity to modify your calls to action (CTAs),, and cater your pitch to the intent of the users on that page. This also extends to the language you use on your pages. Remember, you’ll get further by honing in on intent than you will by trying to just broadly target keywords.
Understanding your user’s search intent will give you power over your content in a way that simple metrics like search volume never could for your keywords. It will also apply to other aspects of your business, like social media. Remember to look for detailed and long phrases (long-tail keywords) as these will offer more insight into where the customer stands in their buyer journey.
User intent is the true power of keywords in today’s SEO world. You should look beyond things like search volume and instead seek to understand the meaning behind what your users are searching. This will give you the knowledge you need to create targeted content that fits their needs.
This article was originally written by Amy Winer for the Heyo Blog.
Building an awesome promotion is half the strategy when it comes to launching a successful campaign. The other half depends on how well the contest or sweepstakes is promoted because the only way people will engage with your campaign is if they KNOW about it first! To help you out as you plan your next campaign, here are 9 tips for promoting your contest or sweepstakes.
9 TIPS FOR PROMOTING YOUR CONTEST OR SWEEPSTAKES
Tip 1: If you’re running a Facebook promotion, make sure it’s prominently exposed on your timeline.
In order to draw attention to your Facebook promotion, you need to make sure your application is visible on your Facebook Timeline. For example, make sure it’s one of your top four application tabs, alongside “Posts” “Photos” “Videos” etc…
Tip 2: And, make sure it’s called out in your Cover Photo.
Customize your Cover Photo with a strong visual and headline, but make sure you leave out a call-to-action, since that violates Facebook’s policies. Essentially, you want to use this real estate to draw attention to your campaign, but not as a way to participate.
Tip 3: Post about it frequently.
Announce (and repeatedly talk about) the campaign on all of your usual social media channels. Your audience is already hanging out there, so grab their attention by announcing the promotion and keeping them informed.
Tip 4: Use your other standard communication channels to communicate information about the promotion.
In addition to posting about your campaign on social media, be sure to also rely on your other communication channels to convey this information as well. An example might be to send an email newsletter out about it, or leverage some real estate on your website’s home page to spread the word.
Tip 5: Leverage in-store signage.
If you have a physical brick-and-mortar location, in-store signage or announcements are a great way to get the word out about your promotion.
Tip 6: Use catalogs or packing slips.
For retailers, consider promoting your campaign in your catalog or with a simple message on all packing slips.
Tip 7: Leverage your influencer network.
Ask your network of influencers to talk about and promote your campaign on their communication channels. Offer to point to their content from your blog (if relevant) as a thank-you for their help.
Tip 8: Draft a press release.
A press release is a great way to reach a large audience and obtain coverage for your promotion.
Tip 9: Advertise.
Search advertising, display ads and Facebook ads are all great way to spread the word about your promotion.
Are you reaching the right prospects? Are you spreading the news about your business? If so, congratulations! You have a well-functioning social media marketing strategy. If the answer is negative, chances are that you haven’t mastered the science of social media content creation yet.
Building a social media content strategy is the key to reaching the right people and making the most of your online presence. The task may seem intimidating at first but if you learn from the experience of the pros in the field, you’ll soon get good results.
So, what does it take to build a solid strategy that’s professional and adequate for your respective field? Keep on reading to discover some of the biggest secrets that social media marketing experts keep to themselves.
KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE!
We can’t stress the important of knowing your audience enough. Once again – learn about your audience before attempting to do anything else.
Social media marketing is all about addressing a specific group of people. The more niche and relatable your content is, the better your online reputation will become. When you have a good idea about your audience’s profile, you’ll know how to choose the right channels and how to put together a solid content plan.
Social media audience research is a task that requires time and effort. For a start, you may want to determine your market position. Are you addressing a current need or creating a brand new desire in buyers? What types of people will benefit from the products and services you have to sell? Where are these people located? Are they employed? How much money do they earn?
Doing competition research will give you some idea about the types of people you should be addressing. The same applies to doing paid social media promotion and setting the right demographic criteria. In fact, this is one of the simplest options for populating your communities with the right people and seeing a high return on investment.
BASE THE CONTENT STRATEGY ON EACH INDIVIDUAL CHANNEL
Here’s another essential to keep in mind – you can’t use the same content on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and the other social media profiles that you maintain. Each of these platforms has its specific audience and communication tools. Thus, you should have a separate content strategy for each of the channels that you’re on.
Multiple social media profiles require constant monitoring. You may start with a few of those but sooner or later, you’ll find out that your efforts should be focused on only a couple of channels that deliver the highest level of engagement for your brand.
You’ll learn a bit more about the content that’s best for each channel through experience. In the beginning, however, you may rely on the following tips to boost the relevance of your content strategies:
Facebook posts: short texts, videos and images tend to benefit from the highest level of engagement. This social network offers quite a lot of versatility when it comes to the content that delivers the best results.
Twitter: very brief sentences, slogans and images are ideal for the purpose of Twitter promotion. You can also post links to your website with brief captions.
LinkedIn: opt for longer texts, as well as longer captions that lead to relevant links. When using LinkedIn, keep in mind that you’ll usually get best results by engaging in B2B promotion.
Instagram: obviously, this channel is the one to use for the publication of photo and video content. Keep the captions short and look for good hashtags.
Google+: images and links to your website accompanied by brief captions tend to see the highest level of engagement.
MAKE THE CONTENT ITSELF GOOD
This tip may seem like an obvious one but many companies ignore the importance of professionally created social media content.
If you don’t have the needed experience and the skills to push out consistent, good content on a regular basis, you should get professionals to do it. TopAussieWriters is just one example of a possibility that you can rely on.
Good posts have a hook, something that gets the audience eager to undertake a certain course of action. You may want to promise an answer to a pressing question, something funny or something that few people know.
When making such promises, you have to deliver. Clickbaiting is a bad strategy because it fools people into believing that you’ll give them something you simply can’t. It may work the first time around but sooner or later, you’ll start losing some of your audience.
Good content is also about regular scheduling. A good social media content strategy schedules updates for regular publication. There’s no need to make multiple updates across channels several times per day. If you only update your profiles once per month, however, it will simply be impossible to keep the audience engaged and coming back for more.
The final thing to remember is that you should constantly keep on checking the performance of your content strategy. Social media provides a lot of analytical information about your top posts, their reach and their engagement level. Find out which types of content gets the best response and which ones miss the mark. You can adjust the strategy on the basis of this information. Social media marketing is a real-time approach. If you’re not getting the return on investment that you desire, you can always modify the campaign to boost its relevance and see better results in the future.
This article was originally written by Alice Clarke for the Heyo Blog.
A+E Networks has launched an Enter-to-Win Sweepstakes in order to capture and engage fans of their popular Lifetime TV series, “Married at First Sight”. In order to keep engagement and momentum consistent, new prizes are available throughout the season. This keeps people coming back to the sweepstakes week over week, giving the brand additional opportunities to drive awareness for upcoming “Married at First Sight” episodes. The result is a holistic marketing campaign with touch-points both online and on-screen! Built on Votigo’s Enterprise Platform, this sweepstakes also features newsletter opt-in functionality, social sharing and mobile responsive design.
In this photo sweepstakes, Cub Cadet is inviting their fans to showcase what the brand means to them by sharing photos of their springtime #LawnGoals. Participants can enter via Direct Upload on Desktop, Smartphone or Tablet, or with the campaign hashtag #LawnGoals on Twitter or Instagram. Allowing users to choose their preferred entry method is great for engagement rates, and it also gives the brand a great opportunity to engage multiple social platforms. This campaign was also built on Votigo’s Enterprise Platformand features content moderation, viral “share” functionality, and mobile responsive design.
Want to learn more about Votigo’s sweepstakes solutions, or brainstorm with a member of our team on your next promotion? Click here to schedule a live demo with an Account Representative.
While it might seem like Spring just got here, Summertime is right around the corner – and so is your chance to run a fun and engaging summer contest or sweepstakes!
The good news is, Votigo has everything you need to plan, produce and manage your campaign so you can be live in no time! And if you’re struggling to think of an idea for your promotion, check out some of these examples for inspiration!
Father’s Day Giveaway
Father’s Day is a great opportunity to run a UGC Contest or Gallery. And, a brand doesn’t have to be directly associated with fatherhood or parenting in general in order to be able to capitalize on the buzz surrounding the holiday. Chances are your audience already participates in Father’s Day anyway, so why not engage them by tapping into behavior they’re already doing, for a chance to win something that IS relevant to your brand? Consider inviting people to submit photos of how your brand or product is helping them celebrate their fathers. Or, run a simple Enter-to-Win Sweepstakes for a chance to win a prize bundle to help them throw a festive Father’s Day celebration!
The same rules can apply if you want to run a Fourth of July Promotion!
There is so much buzz and activity surrounding the 4th of July holiday that you can easily run a contest or sweepstakes that allows your customers to share what the holiday means to them for a chance to win a brand-relevant prize.
And finally, there’s always a great opportunity to invite your audience to celebrate SUMMER in general! Have people share photos or videos of how they are enjoying their summers in the context of a UGC Contest or Sweepstakes! And then have people vote on their favorites in order to drive engagement and awareness of the promotion!Ready to start planning your summertime promotion, or learn about any of Votigo’s other promotion types? Click here to schedule a live demo with an Account Representative.