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2018 was a year packed with scandals, updates, and emerging technologies across all social media channels. As a result…

2019 will bring big changes to your favorite social media platforms.

Are you ready?

Get a step ahead of your competition with this list of MUST-KNOW marketing trends for 2019.

We take you straight to the changes and opportunities that will shape your day-to-day strategies over the coming year.

PLUS we’ve included enough tips to kick-start your social media strategies on 7 different channels!

Get ready for your most successful year ever!

Top Trends & Tips for Facebook 2019

Facebook had more than its fair share of changes and challenges in 2018.

Many experts predict a looming decline in Facebook’s popularity, but despite the privacy violations, data breaches, and fake news – the platform is still the #1 social media network as 2018 comes to a close.

Here are Sharelov’s predictions for the top trends to pursue on Facebook 2019:

1. Prepare for Augmented Reality

Facebook kicked off 2018 with a major algorithm change that slashed organic reach for brands, severely impacting many businesses.

Expect 2019 to continue leaning toward “pay to play” for brands on Facebook.

The good news is that Facebook is experimenting and releasing augmented reality tools that will allow brands to highly-personalize the user experience and greatly increase brand engagement.

For example:

  • Augmented reality tools will enable newsfeed ads that allow users to try on items such as eyeglasses and makeup. These are already in beta and being used by brands like Warby Parker, Nike, and Sephora.
  • Facebook has released an augmented reality tool, “AR Studio,” for developers. Expect to see AR used in innovative ways that go beyond what we’ve seen so far!

During 2019, you can expect to see augmented reality touch every area of Facebook marketing from videos to Messenger communications.

Augmented reality is a trend worth investing in for 2019.

TIP: Learn how brands are using AR in innovative ways so you can brainstorm ideas for enhancing your content with AR in 2019.

2. Use Brief Vertical Videos to Catch Attention

When court documents revealed that Facebook knowingly published inaccurate video statistics, many marketers were relieved to have their suspicions validated. Its fake video statistics led to the failure of many businesses who went “all in” on long-form videos due to the fake stats.

For long-form videos, stick to YouTube.

Facebook videos should always be less than 2 minutes long. A recent in-depth study by Buffer/Buzzsumo found that videos between 30 – 120 seconds received the highest engagement in 2018.

USE VERTICAL VIDEO FORMAT ON FACEBOOK

From the same study, we gained some valuable insights about video formatting:

  • Almost everyone (95%) uses a mobile device to access Facebook.
  • The majority of people (79%) find vertical videos more engaging.
  • People think companies who publish vertical videos are more innovative.

Thanks to the rise of mobile device usage, vertical videos are gaining in popularity. They’re easier to view because the user doesn’t have to turn their phone sideways to watch.

Tips:

  • Balance your content formats. Do – publish more video than ever before, but back it up with high-quality written content for users in the consideration and decision stages of the buyer’s journey.
  • Browse Instagram or IGTV to discover how innovative brands are using vertical video to make an impression with their audiences. Then, pack your content with engaging videos that both entertain and serve your target audience.
  • Try vertical videos that look great on mobile devices, then review your insights to find out if the format is more effective with your audience.
3. Build Trust With Your Audience

Early 2018 ushered in congressional hearings on Facebook’s privacy protection, lack of diversity, and other integrity-related issues.

It all didn’t seem so bad as the hearings played out and viewers watched the live stream, because the hearings kept us entertained with plenty of hilarious viral moments.

However, a never-ending stream of privacy violations, data breaches, and political mishaps throughout 2018 left experts pondering the network’s future.

Worse, many Facebook users lost trust in the platform. According to a December 2018 survey, Facebook is the least-trusted company when it comes to protecting personal information.

Source: Statista

While an estimated 54% of users adjusted their privacy settings in 2018, nearly 70% of U.S. users took a break from Facebook altogether, or deleted the app from their phones.

Source: Statista, Share of Facebook users in the United States who have taken following steps to reframe their relationship with the social network

As a result, Facebook brands must work harder to build trust in 2019 than they ever have before.

Facebook 2019 Marketing Tips
  • Engage, engage, engage! Respond to all user comments as quickly as possible.
  • Invest in social media customer service and address all problems swiftly.
  • Create special-interest closed groups to support your audience. Offer open discussions and support on topics relevant to your products or industry.
  • Post and publish on a consistent schedule.
  • Represent your brand with a consistent personality across all social media channels.
  • Maintain GDPR compliance on your website and in your email marketing.

Building trust with your audience in 2019 is no longer an option.

In the upcoming year, brands must make heroic-level efforts to build customer trust if they want to keep and grow their audiences.

Top Trends & Tips for Instagram 2019

A new Instagram emerges on the cusp of 2019 as brands settle into a broad spectrum of the new social media tools and features released last year.

From cosmetic profile improvements to shoppable product stickers and algorithm transparency, Instagram released what seemed like a never-ending stream of innovative updates during 2018.

Some of its most popular new features include:

  • Pin Stories to profiles
  • Shoppable products in Instagram Stories
  • Instagram Explore page
  • Question Stickers
  • Instagram TV

As marketers become more comfortable with the new features, expect to see them used in more innovative ways. Here are some of the Instagram trends to watch for in 2019.

1. Focus on Engagement Over Promotion

Instagram is on its way to becoming the #1 platform for brand engagement in 2019, according to a recent report by Social Bakers.

Brands that are still focused on creating self-promotional content should take a sharp turn in the other direction, toward a primary goal of increasing customer engagement.

Instead of investing in content that promotes brands and products, expect to see Instagram brands shift to videos, posts, and Stories whose main goal is to engage viewers.

Look to high-engagement brands such as Top Pockets, Mene, Nature Valley, and The Crown for innovative ideas on how to spark brand engagement.

2. Launch an E-commerce Store on Instagram

Social commerce will step into the spotlight in a big way during 2019.

Shopping on social media platforms is positioned to become the “new normal,” and product-driven brands should prepare immediately.

Instagram now lets brands include shoppable product stickers in Stories and posts.

There’s an approval process you must pass before your businesses can create a catalog and product stickers. It’s not a long or complicated routine, but it does make a good argument for getting started sooner rather than later!

Instagram 2019 Tips
  • Use question stickers, emoji sliders, and polls to boost engagement in Stories.
  • Study the tactics of brands that dominated Instagram engagement in 2018.

    Every brand on Instagram will compete for engagement in 2019, so pursue proven, innovative, and interactive ways to keep your audience engaged.
    Click To Tweet

  • If you sell products, launch your Instagram catalog as soon as possible. Create your product catalog on Facebook, link it to Instagram, and start adding shoppable posts and product stickers to Stories.
Top Trends & Tips for Twitter 2019

Despite lousy press over fake followers, fake influencers, and election manipulation, 2018 was Twitter’s best year ever. February saw the announcement of Twitter’s first profitable quarter since going public in 2013.

The New York Times reports that, as a business, it looks like Twitter is finally beginning to work.

Of its 326 million active users an estimated 40% are millennials, according to a current report by Statista. As we approach 2019, there are a handful of trends to watch that will help your brand succeed on the Twitter.

1. Fully Engage with Twitter in 2019

Twitter’s made an extreme effort this year to authenticate followers. The social media platform vowed to remove tens of thousands of accounts for an estimated 6% drop in overall followers.

Now that Twitter’s going legit, it’s time for real brands to step up and participate. Instead of dropping in on occasion or spamming self-serving posts, consider tips from Twitter’s business blog on how to grow your audience and increase engagement:

  • Use eye-catching images, videos, and GIFS in your tweets.
  • Incorporate relevant, researched hashtags.
  • Encourage engagement with questions and polls.
  • Engage on the platform by curating, retweeting, and replying to followers and other businesses.
Source: Statista
2. Enhance Your Customer Care Strategies

Social care and customer service are becoming more personalized, and your 2019 Twitter strategy should adapt.

Now that most brands offer customer care through social media, consumers are expecting higher levels of personalization alongside rapid response times.

While the prospect of stellar customer service on Twitter might seem overwhelming, it’s actually more cost-efficient than call centers. A report by the Online Marketing Institute reveals that it costs only $1 to solve a customer service issue on social media.

Twitter Tips

  • Alongside improving your customer service, track mentions of your brand on Twitter and reply to positive and negative comments swiftly.
  • If you’re marketing on Twitter, go “all in” instead of standing on the sidelines. Follow tips from the Twitter Business Blog to expand reach and boost engagement.
Top Trends & Tips for Pinterest 2019

Despite Pinterest’s smaller numbers (just 250 million active users), Facebook and Instagram are scrambling to catch up with the mighty browsing network when it comes to social commerce.

  • 55% of all people who shop products on social media prefer Pinterest over all other platforms.
  • 90% of Pinners are on the platform browsing for ideas on what to buy next.
  • 55% of those browsing make a purchase.

Pinterest is #1 with shoppers and drives 3.8X more sales than other types of digital campaigns.

Product-Driven Brands Should Invest in Pinterest for 2019. Period.

Pinterest is the #1 choice for people shopping fashion and beauty products, according to an in-depth study by Social Bakers.

Auto, retail, sporting goods, electronics, and services are also popular categories on Pinterest.

Men now make up 40% of all pinners and account for 50% of all new signups.

Yet only 1.5 million businesses are on Pinterest!

If you sell products but aren’t actively marketing on Pinterest, you’re missing out a chance to reel in some very high returns from a low-competition platform.

Pinterest 2019 Tip: Invest in micro-influencers and paid advertising as a way to boost your reach, engagement, and ROI in 2019.

Top Trends & Tips for YouTube 2019

Gen Z is made up of people ages 21 and younger, and by 2020 they’ll make up 40% of all consumer spending.

1. Cater to Gen Z with Uplifting, Entertaining Content

By 2020, Generation Z will account for 40% of all consumers.

Contrary to popular belief, Gen Z’ers do not have short attention spans. Instead, they’re able to process digital information and make value decisions quicker than any generation before them.

One remarkable difference between generation Z and all others is their choice of social media platforms.

YouTube is the #1 social media channel for everything Generation Z.
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2019 is the year you should get to know Generation Z better, so your brand is prepared for the shift in consumer personalities.

2. Get to Know Generation Z

Gen Z’ers are online constantly and often overwhelmed by the high expectations of other social media channels, according to a recent report by Google.

When they want to relax and cheer up -- Generation Z heads to YouTube.
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  YouTube videos help them relax and de-stress, and they’re drawn to videos that help them:

  • Learn or become more knowledgeable on a topic
  • Feel more connected to the world around them
  • Connect with other generations
  • Unplug through pure entertainment

TIP: To keep Gen Z’ers engaged on YouTube, create videos that are authentic, uplifting, or purely entertaining.

Avoid messaging that puts any type of social or academic pressure on them, since they’re getting plenty of it on platforms like Instagram and Facebook.

Social causes are also a high priority, so consider adopting a cause or purpose if you’re looking to connect more closely with Generation Z.

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It takes time to build a successful ad campaign on a new platform.

Or does it?

Instead of spending months in a learning curve, get straight to ad campaign success on Pinterest with this 4-step guide.

Cut through the long “how-to” process with straightforward information that gets your brand in front of people ready to buy right now.

There’s a ton of information available on Pinterest advertising – you could get lost in it for days!

Instead, let us help you get the edge on your competitors and soak up some of that pinner love as quickly as you can.

Ready to reel in the $$$? We’ve got you covered!

Scroll to step #1 below to get started with Pinterest advertising.

Why use Pinterest Advertising?

More than 250 million people turn to Pinterest for ideas on what to buy next.

Pinterest advertising offers sophisticated audience targeting, robust analytics to measure your ad and content performance, and a variety of ad formats to choose from.

People on Pinterest like to take action, and this gives your brand a chance to get out in front of people who are ready to buy.
Click To Tweet

Pinterest is highly effective for campaigns that hope to build brand awareness, sell products, or drive app installs.

Pinterest advertising is an excellent choice for brands that wish to reach shoppers who are ready to purchase.
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Follow the 4 steps below to get your brand advertising effectively on Pinterest.

Step 1: Get Ready to Advertise on Pinterest

There’s 3 steps you need to take before creating your Pinterest advertising.

A. Create a business account.

If you haven’t opened a Pinterest business account, then you’ll need to do this before you take any other steps toward advertising.

B. Get familiar with Pinterest Analytics.

Once your business account is open, you need to open your Pinterest Analytics account. This is a simple process that opens up free insights about the content you post and share on Pinterest.

Most importantly, Pinterest Analytics offers valuable information about your audience that will help you build your ad campaigns.

C. Install the Pinterest tag button.

The Pinterest tag button is a bit of code that you add to your website. It offers insights about your traffic and conversions by showing you what people do after they interact with your paid ads.

Source: Pinterest

This data helps you measure the results of your campaigns and target audiences that are most likely to engage with your ads.

To install, visit the Pinterest tag generator, which will generate your code and walk you through how to install it on your website.

How to set up the Pinterest Tag - YouTube

Once you’ve created a Pinterest business account, become familiar with Pinterest Analytics, and installed the tag button, your advertising prerequisites are complete.

Now you’re ready to begin planning your ad campaign.

Step 2: Plan Your Pinterest Ad Campaign Like A Pro

Before you begin choosing formats and creating ad copy, take time to define your campaign goals and key performance indicators (KPI’s).

What types of goals can Pinterest advertising help you achieve?

The 3 best objectives for Pinterest paid advertising are:

  • Build brand awareness
  • Drive consideration of your products
  • Increase sales

Before you begin creating ads, choose one campaign objective. This goal will help guide your creative efforts and placement decisions as you move forward.

Set goals with KPI’s that are measurable, such as email signups, sales, or app installs. This will let you monitor the results of your campaign along the way.

Step 3: Choose Your Pinterest Ad Format(s)

Pinterest offers 4 different types of ad formats to help you meet your objectives. You can choose one format or mix up the different types of adds you use in a single campaign.

Below is an explanation of each ad format with examples and tips for creating successful ads.

Pinterest Ad Format #1: Promoted Pins

Promoted pins are Pinterest’s most basic ad format.

When you pay to promote a pin, it gets shown to people outside your current audience.

How To Promote a Pin

A. Tap the “promote” button on any of the pins that you’ve created.

Source: Pinterest for Business

B. Fill out the information in the form that pops up.

The promoted pin form will ask you for the following information:

  • Destination URL
  • Daily budget
  • Campaign duration
  • Select keywords to target your audience

How Promoted Pins Helped 57 Design Thrive on Pinterest

Design/Manufacture/Retail company 57 Design is a huge fan of Pinterest promoted pins.

Pinterest is responsible for at least 35% of our revenue. We get very, very good traffic at a fraction of the cost of other platforms.” – Sam Devonport, Founder of 57 Design

Promoted pins are best for: 

Use promoted pins to expand your reach, build brand awareness, or drive sales
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TIP: Try promoting your most successful pins.
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Pinterest Ad Format #2: Promoted Video Pins

Pinterest’s video ad format is perfect for those occasions when you want to grab attention or inspire people to try new things.

Source: Pinterest for Business

Pinterest offers two different formats for promoted video pins – standard width and max width.

Source: Pinterest for Business

Max width video format is plus because it spans the entire width of the feed on mobile devices — so it’s hard to miss!

When you promote a video, it shows up in Pinners’ home feeds, search results, or “more like this” sections.

When you place a promoted video, you have many audience targeting options. You can choose from a long list of audience, keyword, and interest options.

How To Place Promoted Video Pins

You can place promoted video pins by visiting the Ads manager on Pinterest.

Why Cheetos Brand LOVES Promoted Video Pins

Cheetos brand used autoplay video pins to share a funny video and pinners loved it.

People who viewed the ad said they were 51% more likely to buy Cheetos after seeing the promoted video ad.

Promoted video pins are best for: Use promoted video pins to increase brand awareness.

TIP: Follow Pinterest reporting on your videos ads – closely! The reporting helps you learn things like whether people are watching part of all of your videos. This helps you create more effective videos in the future.

Pinterest Business Success Story: Cheetos - YouTube
Pinterest Ad Format #3: Promoted Carousels

Pinterest carousel ads let you combine up to 5 images into one ad.

Carousel Preview: REI - YouTube

How to Place a Promoted Carousel Ad

You can create a Pinterest carousel ad by visiting the Pinterest Ad Manager, where you’ll be able to target your audience with a wide selection of options.

Source: Pinterest for Business

Here’s Why REI Loves Promoted Carousels

Outdoor coop REI likes that carousels allow them to showcase various products and experiences in a way that inspires engagement.

“Our Carousel campaign showed strong engagement and boosted our click-through-rate by 32%. ” Jaclyn Ruckle, Social Media Manager, REI

Promoted Carousels are Best for: Use promoted carousels to boost traffic and conversions and increase brand awareness.

TIP: Use the different images in carousel ads to:

  • Show off different product features
  • Display multiple products
  • Incorporate storytelling into your ad campaigns
Pinterest Ad Format #4: Promoted App Pins

Promoted app pins help your brand get more mobile app downloads. This type of ad format lets pinners install your mobile (IOS or Android) app directly from Pinterest.

The install process is simple and quick, saving the user a trip to the (often overwhelming) app store.

Source: Pinterest for Business

How to Place Promoted App Pins

To place a promoted app pin, visit Pinterest Ad Manager.

Here’s Why Fitness Brand 8fit Is Thrilled With Pinterest Promoted Apps

Fitness and nutrition brand 8Fit gets up to 50% higher subscription rates on Pinterest than on any other platform.

Using Pinterest promoted app pins, 8Fit was able to drive app installs and increase paid subscriptions significantly.

Best for: Promoted app pins are best for helping people discover and download your app.
Click To Tweet

TIP: Take a pointer from 8Fit’s success. Start by targeting a narrow audience, then widening your reach once you get a sense of what’s working.

Step 4: Create Pinterest Ads That Get Noticed

Once you’ve chosen your campaign objectives and ad formats, you’re ready to begin the creative process.

Here are a few tips for creating Pinterest ads that get your brand noticed.

Make Your Visuals Pop!

Don’t let your ads go unnoticed! Use imagery that stands out.

Let’s take a look at some of the eye-catching imagery examples Pinterest includes on its business blog.

Designer Shoe Warehouse uses stunning colors that pop.

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Find out how Pinterest hashtags can help send traffic to your boards and increase engagement. Plus, learn how to publish and format hashtags on Pinterest.

We’ve got tips to help you research, format, and publish hashtags that get you noticed on Pinterest.

Whether you’re an absolute hashtag beginner or a seasoned pro, this guide will show you how to successfully use hashtags on Pinterest.

Grow your audience fast PLUS get them engaged with these hashtag tips for pinners.

We’ve got tips to help you research, format, and publish hashtags that get you noticed on Pinterest.

Whether you’re an absolute hashtag beginner or a seasoned pro, this guide will show you how to successfully use hashtags on Pinterest.

Read on to find out how Pinterest hashtags are different from the ones on other social networks. Plus, you’ll discover important formatting tips to ensure your content doesn’t go unnoticed in the search feeds.

What Are Hashtags?

Hashtags are an auto function of most social media platforms.

Hashtags help businesses get noticed on social search engines. They also offer opportunities for brands to inspire user-generated content.
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A hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by the # sign.

#ThisIsAHashtag

On most social media platforms, adding a hashtag to a post creates an automatic link to a newsfeed-type search result page for that hashtag.

For example, a Pinterest user looking for tips on cooking the perfect steak might type #GrillingTips in the Pinterest search bar.

This brings him to a Pinterest feed packed with pins that include the hashtag #GrillingTips.

Source: Pinterest #GrillingTips

Why would I want to include a link that takes users AWAY from my post?
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Hashtags do offer a direct link away from your post and over to a feed filled with competition for the same hashtag or keyword phrase.

The benefits of using hashtags far outweigh the fact that you’re including an external link in your branded pins.
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In the next section, we’ll explain why hashtags are important to brand success on Pinterest.

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Pinterest Hashtags Faqs
Why Should Businesses Use Pinterest Hashtags?

Businesses should use hashtags on Pinterest for two main reasons: (1.) Hashtags help grow your audience by sending more traffic to your boards. (2.) Hashtags can help fill your Pinterest boards with user-generated content.

1. Pinterest Hashtags Get Traffic to Your Boards Quickly

Adding a hashtag to a pin description immediately publishes that post to the top of its hashtag feed on Pinterest.

For example, I created a pin to promote a Sharelov’s infographic and included the hashtag #MarketingTips at the bottom of my pin description.

In less than a minute, my pin showed up at the top of the search results page when I queried #MarketingTips.

24 hours later, my pin was still in the #MarketingTips search feed, but further down the page  — since other marketers posted more recent pins with the same hashtag.

Including hashtags in your pin descriptions offers:

  • An effective way to reach people looking for your niche product. Got an old barn you’re looking to rent out for weddings? Add #FarmWeddings, #VintageWeddings, and #VintageFarmWeddings to the images.You’ll quickly reach people who are looking to reserve a venue for their romantic vintage farm wedding.

Using niche keywords in hashtags can help your target audience find you quickly.
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  • A great way to drive traffic to your Pinterest boards while waiting for the main search engine.  It takes time for your keywords to show up in Pinterest’s search engine results.

The faster-pace of hashtag search results can help drive traffic to your Pinterest boards while your waiting for your content to show up in its search engines.
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2. Pinterest Hashtags Can Help Boost User-Generated Content

User-generated content takes many forms, such as reviews, ratings, and recommendations.

Most online shoppers agree that user-generated content:

  • Increases purchasing confidence
  • Makes branded content more interesting
  • Encourages them to engage with brands

Hashtags help inspire user-generated content both online and off.

On Pinterest, many top brands avoid adding hashtags to pin descriptions. Instead, they develop hashtag campaigns that drive traffic to their Pinterest boards or other social media pages.

One popular tactic is to offer incentives that encourage customers to share product images, reviews, or promotional codes with their own audiences.

Some brands offer to enter customers into high-reward drawings when they share the product photo and campaign hashtag to social channels like Pinterest.

For example, beauty box subscription service FabFitFun doesn’t include hashtags in any of the pins that we randomly tested.

Instead, the company uses hashtags to encourage user-generated content by promoting a holiday giveaway worth $500.

In addition to reaching all the friends of customers who share, the content also appears in hashtag search pages.

Not only does the #FabFitFun giveaway create a search feed packed with user-generated content, but FabFitFun also shares the tagged images to their own boards.

It’s fair to say the #FabFitFun is a specific hashtag that probably wouldn’t get any search results if the company didn’t use it.

When a Pinterest hashtag result has low returns, the search engine adds in results with the keywords. So, FabFitFun’s pins show up in the feed if there’s not a lot of user-generated content with the #FabFitFun hashtag.

In other words, FabFitFun hands priority over to user-generated content, allowing that to show up first in the hashtag feed.

Let’s take a look at how another successful company uses hashtags to inspire user-generated content.

Allure Beauty Box promotes its branded hashtag on every box it ships out. The hashtag #thebeautybox is printed on all their packing.

By encouraging hashtag sharing offline and off-site, brands create a community of fans that interact with each other’s content.
Click To Tweet

Finding innovative ways to encourage your customers to share hashtags on Pinterest will help grow your audience and engagement rates more quickly.
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How Many Hashtags Should You Include In A Pin?

Here’s how many hashtags you’re allowed to add to pins:

  • You’re allowed to add as many hashtags as you like within the 500-character limit.
  • Pinterest recommends no more than 20 hashtags per post.
  • We recommend no more than 3 hashtags per post in the beginning.

Use discretion regarding the number of hashtags you add to a pin.

It’s not Instagram!

Pay attention to the hashtag etiquette of your industry on Pinterest.
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For example, if yours is a marketing business, you can search the hashtag #Marketing and discover that marketing companies on Pinterest typically publish 3 – 5 hashtags per post.

A bit of competitive research into #motorcycles shows that this industry is comfortable with hashtags. Many of the pins tagged with #motorcycles contain 5 or more hashtags per post.

If you’re in an industry that, like marketing and motorcycles, is comfortable with multiple hashtags, then include a similar number in yours.

However, don’t be the new, loud kid on the playground that everyone avoids. Don’t post 20 hashtags on one pin if the norm for your industry.

Do your research. Find out what’s working for your competitors, and follow suit. Then, measure the results with Pinterest analytics and continue to test-measure until you find the perfect balance.

How to Choose the Best Hashtags for Your Pins

On Pinterest, you should use hashtags that are relevant to your content. Keyword phrases are an excellent choice for hashtags.

Pinners like hashtags that describe the content you’re posting, and many despise hashtag phrases that seem “spammy.”

For the best results, compliment your hashtags with a pin title and description that include keyword-rich phrases.

There are 3 types of hashtags that work very well on Pinterest:

1. Popular hashtags

Discover popular hashtags by using Pinterest’s predictive search bar. For example, if your brand specializes in chocolates, begin by typing #chocolate in the search..

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Imagine you had a fool-proof path to massive success on Instagram.

A path that offers a data-proven method to increasing your engagement, growth, and conversions rates on a steady basis…

That path does exist, and many brands are using it to dominate Instagram’s algorithm right this minute.

Instagram Insights delivers all the information you need for big wins on its platform — but you must know how to use the information to your advantage.

We want your social media efforts to be profitable.

So, we’d like to show you how to use your brand’s insights to build your own data-driven process that helps you:

  • Grow your audience as fast as possible
  • Skyrocket your engagement rates
  • Turn your popularity into profits $$$

Let’s Get Started!

1. How to Understand Instagram Insights
Account Performance: View Your Instagram Account Insights Using the Activity Tab

In this section, we’ll help you understand the insights and terms available in your activity, content, and audience tabs.

Instagram Insights is an easy-to-use program available to business accounts only. You can access your account’s insights through any mobile device, but they’re not available from a desktop computer.

Insights lets you view layers of data related to your Instagram account, content, and audience. The information is presented in a user interface so intuitive that it almost seems simplistic.

The program, however, is actually quite sophisticated.

Insights offers hundreds of data points that can help you improve your engagement rates, audience growth, and conversions.

While simple on the outside, there are quite a few things you’ll need to know about Instagram Insights if you’re going to use it to build a structured path to success.

The Instagram Insights Activity tab shows you what actions people take when they engage with your account.

The Activity tab has 2 sections: Interactions and discovery.

1. Interactions

The Interactions section shows how many profile visits your account has had in the last week, and on what day of the week users visited your profile most.

This section also tells you how many people have tapped the interactive elements of your profile: website link, email button, phone number/call button, and address/directions button.

2. Discovery

The Discovery section shows you how many unique accounts you have reached and how many impressions your content has received during the last 7 days.

The graph at the top of this discovery section lets you see what days of the week your reach has been the largest. Some users may have other information available, such as where the impressions originated.

Content Performance: View Your Instagram Content Insights using the Content Tab

The Instagram Insights Content tab displays information related to all the content you publish on Instagram.

The top of this section shows how many posts you’ve published in the past week versus how many you published in the previous week.

The Content tab has 3 main sections: (A) Feed posts, (B) Stories, and (paid) Promotions.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to understand the insights of your feed posts and Stories.

A. Feed Posts

This section contains data related to all of the posts your business has published on Instagram in the past 2 years.

When you open this section, you’ll see your posts listed in order of the number of times each was seen. From there, you can tap on “select all” to see the full data of all your content’s performance.

Feed post insights lets you apply up to 3 filters at one time.

This means you can sort data using endless filter combinations of content type + engagement action +  time frame. Let’s take a look at the different data points and what they mean.

Filter 01: Content Type

Get specific with the content filter to find out exactly what type of posts your audience engages with or ignores.

The content-type filter offers the following choices:

  • View All: Combines data from all of  your posts – photos, videos, carousel posts, and shopping posts
  • Photos: View only data from photo posts
  • Videos: View only data from video posts
  • Carousel posts: View only data from carousel posts
  • Shopping posts: View only data from posts that contain items from your Instagram storefront

Filter 02: Interaction type

Discover how your audience is engaging with your content by using the Interaction filter.

This filter allows you to sort data according to the way users engage with the content type you chose in filter #1.

  • Calls: The number of times users have tapped the “Call” button on your profile
  • Comments: The number of times your posts were commented on
  • Emails: The number of times users have tapped the “Email” button on your profile
  • Engagements: The number of times your posts were liked, saved, or commented on.
  • Follows: The number of accounts that started following you as a result of your posts.
  • Get directions: The number of times people have tapped the “address” button on your profile.
  • Impressions: The total number of times your posts show up in the newsfeedThis number may be bigger than the number of people who see your post (reach).For example, if friends share the same post, it may reappear in your newsfeed a 2nd or 3rd time (or even more). Impressions count the total number of times a piece of content has shown up in newsfeeds.
  • Likes: The number of times your content was liked
  • Profile Visits: The number of times your profile was viewed
  • Reach: The unique # of users that have seen any of your posts
  • Saved:  The number of users that saved your posts
  • Texts: The number of times users have messaged you
  • Website Clicks: The number of times your website link was visited

Filter 03: Choose time period

Get specific with the content filter to find out exactly what type of content your audience reacts best to.

You can view by:

  • 7 days
  • 30 days
  • 3 months
  • 6 months
  • 1 year
  • 2 years

B. Stories

The Stories section shows you how people interacted with your Instagram Stories.

Stories insights lets you apply 2 filters at one time. You can sort data using interaction type +   time frame.  Many of the Stories insights data points are the same as what we covered in the content section (above).

However, Stories have a few additional data points that you should become familiar with:

  • Exited: Number of users that tapped away to leave your story
  • Forward: Number of users that tapped forward to see the next photo or video in your story
  • Link opens: Number of times a link in your Story was opened
  • Next story:  Number of users that tapped away from your Story and moved on to someone else’s Story
  • Reach: Number of accounts that saw a photo or video from your Story
  • Replies: Number of replies to a photo or video in your story

C. Time Period

You can view insights on your Instagram Stories for up to 14 days after they’ve been published.

Here are your time frame choices for Stories insights:

  • 24 hours
  • 7 days
  • 14 days
Audience Insights: Learn More About Your Audience by Using the Audience Tab

The Instagram Insights Audience tab lets you get to know more about who your followers are and when they’re online.

Your audience insights share the following types of data:

  • Gender: Displays the percentage of men versus women
  • Age Range: Displays the age range of your followers
  • Top Locations: Displays the top cities and countries of your followers
  • Followers: What days of the week and hours of the day your audience is online
2. How to Build a Path to Success Using Instagram Insights

Insights are a lot of fun to browse! But, the data by itself won’t help you increase your reach, engagement, or sales.

In order to build a solid path to success, you need to learn how to use the data to your advantage.

In this section, we’ll show you what questions you need answered in order to create a data-proven formula for your success.

What Type of Content Should You Post?

The insights in  your content tab will help you decide what type of content to post..

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The easiest and most effective beginner’s guide to Instagram hashtags.

Plus you get a bonus.

The Instagram Hashtag Cheat Sheet section gives you 18 tips for dominating the Instagram hashtag feed.

Not only will you learn how to use hashtags – from scratch – but you’ll also get insider tips that can rapidly increase your success.

If you want to grow your audience on Instagram with the use of one simple symbol, #YouWillLoveThisGuide!

Let’s get started.

Instagram Hashtags 101 – An Introduction for Beginners

This section is for people who’ve never used hashtags before, or who aren’t sure how they should be used.

If you’re experienced with hashtags, you can skip this section and go directly to Section 2.

What are Hashtags?

A hashtag is a word or phrase with the # sign before it. It’s used in social media to tag a piece of content to an on-platform category-type search.

For example, if you’re selling chocolate brownies you might add the hashtags #ChocolateBrownies and #ChocolateLovers to your Instagram post.

When an Instagrammer wants to browse posts created for chocolate lovers, she types #ChocolateLovers in the search box, which turns up a feed of all Instagram content containing that hashtag.

Here’s an example of an Instagram post by Fedex that includes hashtags within and at the end of the post.

Instagram allows users to include up to 30 hashtags per post.

When brands include a lot of hashtags in a post, they usually find a way to separate them from the post message so the visuals don’t get overwhelming.

To do this, users often put hashtags in the 1st comment of a post instead of in the caption. Or, they find a way to separate the hashtags from the message by typing a period following by “enter” a number of times. For example, the Hubspot post below shows the “period-enter” method.

On Instagram, users can follow hashtag feeds so they see all the new content that matches their favorite hashtags in their newsfeed each day.

Who Invented the Hashtag?

In 2007, product designer Chris Messina was working with a small group of designers and using a “small social network called Twitter” to communicate.

He liked the way the pound symbol was used in chatrooms to display categories, and thought it would be a good idea to use them to organize discussions on Twitter.

Who Invented the Hashtag? - Source: CNBC

When Messina brought the idea to Twitter, the administration replied with a “no,” explaining they thought it was “nerdy” and that it would never catch on.

Chris convinced his friends to use the symbol anyway. It eventually caught on and became adopted by Twitter users. Two years later, Twitter added a “search hashtag” option to its growing platform.

Interestingly, Messina did not file for a patent on the hashtag because A.) he felt it would hinder the adoption of hashtag usage, and B.) he felt hashtags “belong to the internet” and should be owned by no one.

“The value and satisfaction I derive from seeing my funny little hack used as widely as it is today is valuable enough for me to be relieved that I had the foresight not to try to lock down this stupidly simple but effective idea.” – Chris Messina, Inventor of the hashtag

Why are Hashtags Such a  Big Deal on Instagram?

Hashtags help you grow and engage your audience.

Instagram’s 1 billion + users love to interact with brands. More than 200 million of them visit at least one business profile daily, and 60% say they’ve discovered new products on Instagram.

Hashtags can be a massively successful way for you to reach target customers and grow your following on Instagram.

According to research by Agora Pulse, Instagram posts with at least 1 hashtag resulted in a 70% increase in likes, and posts with hashtags had a 392% increase in comments over those without hashtags!

There is a catch to all this good news, though. You’re competing with 25 million business profiles and 2 million paid advertisers.

And, as with any social media platform, competition reduces reach.

We can help you with this!

Below, you’ll discover step-by-step instructions for choosing and using the right hashtags. We’ll walk you through all of the hashtag “lingo” and show you what types of hashtags work best.

You’ll learn how to research, choose, and publish hashtags that help your brand get noticed.

How to Choose Hashtags

When you include a hashtag in your post or story, it allows people to discover you when they’re searching for that topic.
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The more relevant and targeted your hashtags are, the better chance you’ve got at reaching an audience that will engage with your content.

In this section, we’ll explain how to choose hashtags that attract the “right” type of followers.

How Many Hashtags Should You Choose for Each Instagram Post?

Instagram allows you to include up to 30 hashtags per post.

Before you go hashtag-crazy, it’s important to understand that more hashtags don’t always mean more traffic.
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Spamming your readers with 30 different versions of a keyword can be annoying and probably won’t help improve your visibility, anyway.

The key to success with hashtags is to use them strategically.

One well-researched hashtag is more valuable than 30 carelessly-chosen phrases.
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For example, if you specialize in winter coats, choosing a general term such as #WinterCoats will do nothing but put you in a hashtag results feed with nearly 38,000 other posts about winter coats.

However, if you get specific with your hashtag, for example #WarmWinterCoats, this puts you in a feed with less competition, raising the chances that your content gets discovered. It also narrows the target persona, improving your chances of building an audience that’s highly engaged with your brand.

By narrowing your hashtag description, not only do you better target a specific type of consumer, but you also cut down on the competition.

While there is data available on how many hashtags get the most engagement, one study after another offers conflicting results. One report says 5, another 10, another insists you must post all 30.

The reason for all of the conflicting data?

Instagram added so many new features and updates in 2018 that it’s like publishing to a brand-new platform.
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We’re all still learning what works in the “new” Instagram.

The biggest change took place about a year ago, when Instagram expanded its features to let users follow hashtags (or unfollow brands) within feeds.

This was a game-changing update and one that made all prior hashtag statistics unreliable.

When Instagram changed the way we find and view hashtags, it affected how people respond to and interact with them.

So, reports stemming from Instagram hashtag research in 2014 – 2017 can be misleading because they’re outdated.

Hashtag usage is now so specific to your brand’s size and personality that you need to test and analyze the results for your own brand to find out what works best.
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The question “How many hashtags should I add per post” can only be answered with “Always add at least one!”
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From there, test and analyze the results to discover what works best for your audience.

The Different Types of Instagram Hashtags

When choosing hashtags for a post, first decide what type of hashtags you’d like to add. Below is a list of the types of hashtags commonly used on Instagram.

Branded Hashtags

A branded hashtag is a short phrase that represents your brand and can be used across all your social media accounts – Instagram included.

For example, KitKat uses #HaveAbreak, Nike uses #justdoit, and Nintendo uses #Nintendo.

Source: Nintendo on Instagram

Campaign Hashtags

Campaign hashtags belong to specific marketing campaigns and contests.

Campaign hashtags are used for the length of a specific campaign, then expired once the campaign ends.

Coca Cola’s #ShareACoke is good example of a popular campaign hashtag. Instead of retiring the hashtag, the company has reinvented and built on it as an annual summer campaign every year since 2014.

Coca Cola’s #ShareACoke is good example of a popular campaign hashtag - Source: Instagram #ShareACoke

The campaign is so popular that it’s expanded into merchandising that includes customized and gifted coke bottles.

Niche Hashtags

Niche hashtags connect your brand to a specific type of audience - usually one that is more likely to engage with and purchase from you.
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For example, if you’re a marketer, you could include the hashtag #marketing in your Instagram posts. However, that would put your content in a feed with 22 million other posts.

Instead, try adding a descriptive term that narrows the field.

For example, a b2b marketer could use the hashtag #B2BMarketing to reach a more specific audience. This niche hashtag cuts the competition down to 123,000 posts.

Niche hashtags connect your brand to a specific type of audience - Source: Instagram #B2BMarketing

Or, a local coffee shop might use the hashtag #IndependentCoffee instead of #Coffee to narrow the competition from 98 million #coffee posts down to 10,000 more-targeted posts.

Source: Instagram #IndependentCoffee

As you can see, though, choosing a popular niche still lands your content into a feed with massive competition.

Niche more! Don’t settle for getting listed in a feed where your chances of getting discovered are about as slim as winning the lottery.
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Instead, add additional hashtags that narrow the results even more. For example:

#ContentMarketing: 1 million +..
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Frustrated by Facebook’s algorithm changes? Uncertain about the authenticity of Twitter? Finding LinkedIn a little “blah” for your style?

Just when you thought social media was about to make business marketing impossible, along comes Instagram Stories.

Instagram Stories is the social media marketing solution that you wished for but thought would never come.

Instagram Stories brings you:

  • An audience that LOVES to interact with brands
  • A shocking number of new features that make engagement fun and easy
  • A way to grow an audience AND sell more products

In this article, we’ll show you all the Stories formats, tips, and features you need to know about to succeed on Instagram.

Why Use Instagram Stories?

Every day, more than 400 million Instagrammers use Stories.

Sources: Facebook; TechCrunch © Statista 2018

Whether they’re sharing their lives or discovering new brands, Instagrammers can’t seem to get enough of Stories.

For businesses, the Stories feature offers a unique opportunity to grow an audience, increase engagement, and drive website conversions.

In fact, one-third of the most-viewed Stories on Instagram are from businesses.

During a time when many other social media platforms are executing algorithms to hide the presence of businesses, Instagram is celebrating them.

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Its constant updates and developments help brands to:

  • Get noticed
  • Form a connection with followers
  • Convert fans into paying customers

Many brands have gone on the record stating that Stories has a tremendous impact on their ability to grow, interact, and convert followers to customers.

For example, Tropicana Juice ran a series of vertical videos in Stories for a summer promotional campaign. Its addictive how-to style videos were a giant success and ended up boosting its in-ad lift recall by a gigantic 18 points.

Tropicana later said that the use of full-screen vertical videos in Stories allowed their visuals to “pop more vibrantly” and reach a wider core consumer base.

“Scrolling through the feed requires effort, whereas watching Stories does not—simple as that. Brands need to be where it’s easiest for consumers to find them.” – Adweek Magazine

What’s new in 2019 Instagram Stories?

Instagram Stories launched in 2016 and grew to over 400 million users in less than 24 months.

Along the way, Instagram has continually released new features and updates that help people and brands communicate through what the social media giant refers to as “camera messaging.”

2018 saw the release of a number of new Stories features that make brand messaging more engaging and discoverable.

Some of the best new Instagram Stories features are:

Question stickers: Question stickers allow you to post multiple-choice questions to your followers. They can be a fun and engaging way to interact with your audience! Use them for your events and in-store promotions.

Music in Stories: Create a mood by adding up to 15 seconds of background music to your Instagram Stories.

Location stickers: Location stickers help brick-and-mortar businesses drive local Instagrammers to their physical location.

For example, Chipotle restaurant chain threw a “Lollapalooza” event in Chicago, Illinois and invited nearby Instagrammers to join in. They included a location tag at the top of one of the Story screens.

Any business with a physical location can add a location sticker to Stories. Location stickers help Instagrammers to find local businesses when they’re searching for a nearby restaurant, store, or other local business.

Ads in Stories Now, businesses can reach a highly targeted audience through ads in Instagram Stories. Ads in Stories are a paid feature. If you’d like to find out more about them, Facebook Blueprint offers a free eLearning course that teaches you how to make the most of your Stories ads.

Swipe-up links: Swipe-Up links are outbound links that you can place in Stories if you have 10,000 or more Instagram followers. This lets brands add links to their own websites or other social media accounts

Mention stickers, Emoji slider polls, Font options, and the ability to share posts are also great new features that can be added to your brand Stories.

Shopping stickers: Businesses can now use stickers to promote their products in Stories!

Product stickers allow your readers to shop for and purchase products featured in your Stories.

Tapping on a product sticker within a Story takes the viewer to a product description page on Instagram.

From the product page, a shopper can tap “View on website” to go directly to the product page on your website.

Or, they can scroll down to browse all of your sticker products.

Shopping in Stories changes the game for brands who sell online products. You can add product stickers to any of your Stories.

You also have a shot at appearing on Instagram’s shopping channel Explore page. This is a great opportunity to get discovered by new Instagrammers looking for products like yours.

Instagram Stories game-changing update: The “Explore” page

The Explore page is, by far, Instagram Stories most promising update released in the past year. It allows Instagrammers to browse new content and discover new brands.

This allows brands to get seen and “discovered” by a much larger audience if they’re featured in the Explore page.

How to Create Instagram Stories

Creating Instagram Stories is a simple process. Keep in mind that you can also highlight Stories and pin them to your profile, where they’ll remain as long as you choose to keep them there.

A) How to create an Instagram Story

To create an Instagram Story, tap the camera icon in the left-hand corner of your Instagram app.

Share a photo, then tap “Your Story” to add it to your Story.

B) How to pin an Instagram Story to your business profile

Tap “Stories Highlights” beneath your business bio, then tap the “+” button.

Select the Stories you want to pin to your business bio page, and finish it up by choosing a cover photo and naming your Story  – it’s that simple!

Now that you know how to create and pin Stories, let’s take a look at the types of formats that Instagrammers love to engage with.

3 Stories Formats That Instagrammers Love

There are many ways to increase your chances of success with Instagram Stories. Whether your goal is to grow your audience, increase engagement, or boost your conversion rates, there is a feature on Stories that can help you achieve it.

Start by choosing a format that Instagrammers love to engage with.

You’re always free to experiment and try new things on Instagram, but there are a few formats that have proven successful on Instagram over and over again.

To better connect with your audience, consider creating the following types of Stories.

1. Tutorial and How-To Videos

How-to and tutorial-style videos come to life in Instagram’s vertical format with interactive features like stickers and polls.

Although how-to style videos are popular formats for recipes and makeup tutorials, there are many other ways that businesses can use them to increase engagement.

For example, HGTV got creative with a fun and unexpected how-to video in one of their Stories.

Using the hashtag #BodyByHGTV, the Home and Garden TV Story shows viewers how they can watch TV and sneak in a workout at the same time.

Using a split screen in vertical format, the HGTV Story focuses around a person who can’t make up her mind between watching “House Hunters” and working out, so she decides to do both.

While the tutorial is meant to be funny and starts out as somewhat of a joke, the exercises are actually great, quick bits you can do in your living room – while watching the show!

2. Behind-the-Scenes Videos

Give viewers a peek into the day-to-day world of your brand and its products with a behind-the-scenes Story.

Globein Fair Trade products does this with a Story video that shows how their ceramic products are made.

Its Story offers followers the chance to watch every part of the production process, including how they break down material to make the clay for Moroccan ceramics.

Behind-the-scenes videos are a big hit with followers because they give people a chance to connect with your brand in a different way.

Your videos might include a peek inside your offices or warehouse, or a feature on how your products are made.

Anything that allows you to show a more authentic, human side of your brand will probably do very well in Instagram Stories.

3. Question and Answer Sessions

A question and answer-style Story can be an excellent way to engage your followers, as long as you keep it fun and creative.

One way to encourage engagement is by using question stickers that encourage followers to ask you questions.

Or, find unique visual ways to present frequently asked questions in your Stories.

How to Enhance your Stories with Features That Increase Your Engagement and Reach

Take advantage of Instagram’s special features to increase interaction between your brand and its followers.

Stickers, polls, hashtags, and account tagging are features that can go a long way toward encouraging people to interact with your brand’s Stories.

For example, DIY Network involves viewers in their Stories by adding poll stickers that ask for help making decisions about what type of materials to use in their projects.

In the example below, a poll sticker poses the question “Which plantar?” and asks viewers to vote for either the charcoal or terracotta style.

Expand your reach and grow your audience by improving your chances of getting discovered with features like location stickers, hashtags, and account tagging.

Nike brand smartly uses account tagging to make its Story content stand out. One of its Stories features a variety of quotes from well-known people, with their names tagged at the bottom of the image.

Instagram Stories features can help your brand get noticed and build a stronger, more interactive, connection with your followers. Use features often in your Instagram Stories!

Expert Tips to Give Your Instagram Stories an Edge

We’ve compiled a handful of tips from Instagram experts to help you get a head start on your Stories. Try one or all of them to increase engagement and grow your following.

  • Get away from the stills and make more videos.” –  Christine Goos, Adweek MagazineAdweek writer Christine Goos believes that short-form video is best for marketers on Instagram. Since videos drive 9X more post-click site visits than static images, she recommends publishing more videos – and then more videos – instead of images.
  • Go on Instagram Live while an existing Story is up.” – Sean Kelly, @JersyChampsSean Kelly, found/CEO of @JersyChamps, told Hootsuite marketing in an interview that if you “go on..
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How would you like to take a giant step toward competing with big-name brands on Facebook?

Find out how to use your Facebook cover photo to capture attention, boost engagement, and increase conversions.
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These techniques are so easy that 

you’ll be tripping over yourself to share them with your team by the time you finish reading!
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We’ll start by giving you the exact sizing requirements for Facebook cover photos and cover videos.

Before we get started, let’s take a quick look at why Facebook’s cover photo is so important to the success of your brand.

Why the Facebook Cover Photo is Crucial to Your Success as a Business

Did you know there are over 70 million businesses using Facebook on a regular basis?

If you want your brand to get seen then you need to stand out.

With over 1.4 billion people logging onto Facebook for an average of 13 ½ minutes daily, Facebook marketing for business is a must for brands wanting to reach consumers interested in connecting with brands.

Second only to Google in site popularity, Facebook remains the most-visited social media network - by a long shot.
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Find more statistics at Statista

A recent survey found that 52% of U.S. consumers have reported seeing a product they’re interested in on Facebook.

But big numbers mean big competition.

Your Facebook cover photo is the first thing newcomers and followers see when they visit your page. For many, it will be the first impression they get of your business.

Facebook cover photo isn’t only for people who visit your page. When your followers share, react, and comment on your content, then their friends see your post in their newsfeed.

Then, when people scroll over your business name, it brings up a preview of your Page’s cover photo.

Despite the competition, there are ways that businesses – including yours – can catch the attention of consumers and make a lasting first impression.

We’ve compiled the best 10 tips for Facebook cover photos to help you get noticed so you can expand your reach and increase your engagement.

Facebook Cover Photo Sizes and Specs

This is an easy one because we’re going to give you all the information you need to provide the perfect-size image for your Facebook cover photo.

Best Facebook Cover Photo Size =  820 X 462 pixels

The 820 X 462 px image size is recommended because it works for both desktop and mobile devices. Use image or text in PNG format for the best results.

  • Desktop displays at: 820 X 312 pixels
  • Smartphones display at:  640 X 360 pixels.
  • Minimum size: 400 X 150
  • Fastest-loading format & size: sRGB JPG file: 851 X 315 pixels, less than 100 kb file size
  • Best-looking format: PNG file

When sizing for mobile, you’ll notice that the top and bottom 75 pixels is shaded red. The areas shaded red are visible only on mobile devices and do not show up in the desktop version of your cover photo.

Sizing your Facebook cover photo correctly will help you to be sure that your image’s quality can compete with big-name brands.

Facebook Cover Video Sizes and Specs

Yes! You also have the option of replacing your cover photo with a video that’s between 20 – 90 seconds long. Here are the sizing requirements for Facebook cover videos:

Best Facebook Cover Video Size: 820 X 462

  • Length: 20 – 90 seconds
  • File Size: 100kb or less
  • Minimum: 820 X 312 px
  • Autoplay: Auto-plays without sound. View must tap for sound.
  • Cropping: Like the cover photo, you can reposition videos and choose

Cover videos display at the same size as images and change viewing size depending on the device. Be sure to check your cropping on both desktop and mobile devices!

Facebook Cover Photo/Video Sizes and Specs
5 Techniques for Facebook Cover Photos That Get Noticed

There are a handful of ways to craft cover photos and videos that look amazing on your Facebook business page. In this section, we’ll show you 5 different techniques that big brands use to capture attention with their cover photos and videos.

1.  Balance the Weight of Your Profile Picture

Since all Facebook cover photos are positioned to the right of a profile picture, you can create a beautiful aesthetic by balancing the “weight” with another object on the opposite side.

To do this, simply display an object on the far right side of your Facebook cover photo.

SEO marketer Rand Fishkin nails this technique by placing the tip of an airplane and full propeller on the right side of his cover photo.

Notice how the plane helps to “balance out” his profile image for an impressive whole-screen view?

Since the smaller profile image shows up on both desktop and mobile screens, this technique creates fantastic aesthetics across all types of devices.

Subway Sandwiches takes a similar approach with its Cover video.

Its Facebook page greets visitors with a delicious-looking stack of sandwiches sitting motionless on the left side of the screen. Suddenly, a bright red and white clown’s arm appears from the right to steal a sandwich.

In Subway’s cover video, we see the clown hand reach for a sandwich and pull it away – over and over again.

Not only does the clown arm do a great job of adding “weight” to the right side of the video image, but it also draws the viewer’s eye toward the “send message” button on the lower right side of the screen.

2. Use Your Cover Image to Direct the Viewer’s Attention

If your profile includes CTA buttons, or if your image includes a small headline, you can easily direct viewer’s attention toward these important points without using tacky arrows or clipart.

One way to do this is by adding motion near the CTA button, as Subway did in the example above.

Another, even better way is to show a person or animal gazing toward the CTA or headline.

For example, TV show So You Think You Can Dance uses this technique to draw attention to a small CTA headline in the upper right corner of their cover image.

A photo of video with a person (or pet!) glancing in a specific direction can be a very effective way to encourage engagement with your guests.

3. Include Faces in Your Photos

Our brains are drawn to human faces, and studies show that using faces instead of products or objects can improve conversion rates up to 95%.

Including real people in your Facebook cover photos and videos also help your audience to connect with your brand on a more human level.

For example, Pier 1 Imports cover video shows a captivating woman holding a guitar, and you can’t help but pay attention.

Guess Clothing uses a simple, but stunning, image of 3 models walking in the outdoors. The image is nearly impossible to look away from!

Daily Burn Fitness App also includes faces on their cover image, however, we can’t help but wonder how much is too much?

Daily Burn does an amazing job of connecting with their followers by posting this image of a group of their trainers.

This image probably works great for their current customers who already know and love the trainers.

However, a new visitor might not be as drawn to the image.

That’s because when you begin to include too many faces, the viewer doesn’t know where to look — so you can lose the impact that faces normally have on a viewer.

4. Showoff Stunning Photography with a Simple, Centered Object

If you have the ability to create stunning photography, let it shine by displaying only one centered object on your cover photo.

In the example below, Rolex watches shows how simplicity can have a stunning effect when combined with masterful photography.

5. Use Text with Caution

any brands choose to forgo imagery and opt for text cover images and videos. This approach can work well if you keep the text simple and the character-count low.

For example, Chanel brand uses only text in their Facebook cover photo. Notice how the font is simple and there are only 6 characters: CHANEL

Hubspot Academy takes a similar approach but adds a bit of fun using video effects.

There are many ways to make your Facebook cover images and photos “pop.” Some brands, like Whole Foods, come up with their own way to catch attention.

You’ll notice that the Whole Foods example follows none of the standard tips, but they make it work anyway!

However, if you’re a business that doesn’t have a professional designer on staff, you may want to stick to the more basic tips above to ensure that your imagery looks fabulous and encourages people to engage with your brand.

Quick Tips for Producing High-Quality Facebook Cover Photos

Now that you know what kind of cover photos will make the biggest “splash,” here are a few quick production tips to help ensure your success:

  • Always test your images on both desktop and mobile devices to be sure your cover looks great.
  • Switch it up! Change your cover frequently, especially during the holidays.
  • Include CTA’s and links in your cover image description.
  • If you don’t have Photoshop, try using Canva design software for beautiful, easy Facebook cover designs.
  • If you need a wider selection of images, check out Unsplash, Pexels, or Gratisography for free stock photos (always check licensing permissions before use).
  • Be sure to read, understand, and follow Facebook Page cover guidelines.
  • Social Media Marketing is better in teams! Sharelov’s team collaboration software lets your team work together seamlessly for every type of marketing campaign you need. Drop by and give it a free try today!

All Eyes on On Your Facebook Cover Photo or Video

According to a study by PUbMed.gov, 90% of the information processed by your brain is visual and you take it in 60,000 times faster than words on a page.

Plus, visuals help people to learn quicker and remember more.

Use high-quality imagery in your Facebook cover photos and in all your social media profiles to help people learn about and remember your brand, so they return again and again!

The World’s Easiest Guide To Facebook Cover Sizes For Images And Videos
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Increase your engagement and conversion rates like never before when you learn how to polish up your Instagram bio with the latest 2018 features and techniques.

Small but mighty! Find out how to stand out among the 25 million businesses on Instagram with a brand profile that’s optimized for action.

In this guide, we walk you through every element of your Instagram bio and show you how to turn a plain profile into a high-performing Instagram “homepage.”

We’ve included a ton of examples from popular brands —  so you can see what some of the most successful Instagram business bios look like!

What Are Business Profiles on Instagram?

Your Instagram profile is the first place people go to find out more about your brand and decide if they want to follow you.
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Active Instagrammers often search for new products and brands on the social media platform before doing a Google search.
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This means your profile becomes a sort of “homepage” for people who are searching for brands like yours.

Why Is Your Instagram Business Profile So Important?

Your Instagram business profile can make or break your popularity on the rapidly-growing social network.
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Here’s why:

On other social media channels like Twitter and Pinterest, your bio rarely gets seen.

On Instagram, your bio is up front and center.

On other social media channels, you have plenty of space to tell people who you are and what you do.

On Instagram, you’ve got only 150 characters.

The good news is that we’re going to show you how to make your message “pop” with the latest tips, tools, and techniques for 2018. You can use them to increase links, engagement, and conversions across Instagram.

Here’s What an Instagram Profile Looks Like

At first glance, your business profile looks ridiculously simple. You might even be tempted to just fill in the blanks and get posting.

However, there are tips and tricks you can employ at every step to make your profile more actionable and encourage people to follow and interact with you.

For example,

Dunkin Donuts makes the most of their profile by incorporating a number of features like emojis, buttons, and Stories highlights -- plus a good dose of personality.
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Now that you have an idea what an Instagram profile is and why it’s so important, we’re ready to get started!

1.  How to fill out Your Instagram Business Name and Username

Username? Business name? What’s the difference? In this section, we show you how to fill out the name and username fields of your Instagram profile to increase brand recognition.

Ideally, the name and username fields of a business profile contain the same name. This improves your brand recognition and helps people find you on Instagram.

Using different names in these fields can confuse people and make it harder for your business to get found.

Make a clear 1st-impression on Instagram by matching your brand’s username and profile name as closely as possible.

The example below shows how Kwik Trip Convenience Store wisely uses the same name in “username” and “name” fields. The only difference is that they’re able to add a space between “Kwik” and “Trip” in the name field.

Here are a couple things you might not know about profile names:

  • You can change your username. If your username isn’t already set to the name of your business, change it to the exact name (if available) or a recognizable variation.
  • You can use up to 30 characters in the “Name” field.  If your business name is short, this leaves room for a brief description or product name.

For example, Topo Chico USA expands on its name by adding “Mineral Water” to the end of its name.

Instead of “Topo Chico,” its profile reads is “Topo Chico Mineral Water.”

Aligning your username and brand name helps to increase your brand recognition and reassures Instagrammers that they’re in the right place.

2.  How to Use Your 1 Website Link on Your Instagram Profile

You only get 1 link on Instagram — find out how to choose the right link to increase traffic, subscribers, or conversions.

What external link will you include in your business profile? You only get one link on Instagram, so be sure and align it with your goals!

Before you add that link, take a close look at your goals.

Why are you on Instagram?

Obviously, you want to grow a following and engaged audience, but what are you hoping to achieve by doing so?

Use the link to support your primary goal. Is your intention to:

  • Drive traffic to your website? If so, add a link to your website or blog.
  • Build your email list? If so, add a link to your subscription form or landing page
  • Sell more products? If so, add a link to a special offer or product catalog.

Remember your primary goal as we move forward to other parts of your profile. You’ll be supporting that goal as you write your bio and make other profile-related decisions.

3.  How to create an Instagram Business Bio that gets noticed

Find out how to create the best Instagram bio to get followers using all the latest techniques and features.

Welcome to the Instagram business bio!

On Instagram,

you’ve got 150 characters to explain your business, call readers to action, show some personality, include keywords, add a hashtag, offer social proof, target your audience, and convert visitors to followers.
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What!?!

Don’t worry. It can be done — and we’re going to show you how!

We’ll also include some Instagram bio examples to help you see how other businesses are doing it.

Here’s how to write your Instagram bio to grow your audience and increase engagement.

A. Say Who You Are and Explain What You Do.

Start by writing a short phrase that describes what your brand has to offer.

Spotify Music Service does a great job with this in less than 60 characters. “Music for every moment. Play, discover, and share for free.”

In the Spotify example above, you’ll notice that the brand describes their service by leading with the customer benefits instead of focusing on itself or its features.

Spotify’s bio focuses on what the customer gets from them — “Music for every moment,” and “Play, discover and share for free.” This is much more engaging to the reader than a long list of features or company accolades.

“Benefits-first” is a copywriting technique that anyone can use to help engage readers.

Here’s how BoxyCharm beauty subscription service does it: “Into beauty? Get 4-5 FULL SIZE products for $21mo.”

Boxycharm leads with what the reader gets from them.

This classic form of copywriting is a widely-known tactic used by the most successful ad people throughout history. Try using it when writing your Instagram bio to achieve better results for your business.

B. Include a Call to Action (CTA).

A CTA on your Instagram business bio helps to engage readers.

A call-to-action (CTA) is a short line of text that encourages readers to do something like follow your page, subscribe to your newsletter, or buy your product.

On Instagram, you can use a CTA to enlist readers to take an action on or offt he platform.

For example, Apartment Therapy encourages readers to tag photos with the CTA: “Share  your home photos with #apartmentherapy.”

Apartment Therapy knows that their target audiences love sharing photos of their homes, so this is a great way to get encourage its target audience to engage with the brand on Instagram.

You might want to use your CTA to drive business away from Instagram and over to your website or a landing page.

In the example below, Art Naturals skin care uses a “shop here” CTA to encourage its audience to browse products on their website. Notice how the brand aligns its 1 profile link with the CTA so the 2 elements work together for the same purpose.

Your choice of CTA comes down to 1 of 2 goals. Will you:

  • Use a CTA to encourage engagement on Instagram, or
  • Use a CTA to support your primary goal by sending viewers to a website, landing, or product page?

If you’re hoping to create the best Instagram bio to get followers, use your CTA to encourage users to interact with you on Instagram.
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C. Use Emojis If Possible

Instagrammers love emojis, and including them in your bio can be a great way to show some personality.
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For example, ASOS Fashion uses emojis on its bio to show personality and draw attention to important points.

BBC News uses emojis to emphasize the different emotions that can be associated with news. Its string of 4 faces (laughing, crying, smiling, and heart-ing) remind users that their news covers a wide range of topics.

Emojis can be a fun way to catch attention, but they aren’t appropriate for all brands.

If your brand has a serious personality or if you specialize in high-priced luxury items, then emojis may not be a good addition to your bio.

D. Show Some Personality!

Use your bio to show some personality and connect with your audience!

Add a touch of humor, philosophy, or quirkiness to your bio message to catch attention and create a lasting impression.
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For example, EOS skin care products lets their personality shine with a play on words: “We believe beautiful skin is the balm!”

WeWork co-working space takes a more serious approach.

The brand shares its personal philosophy,  “Make a life, not just a living.” to help form a personal connection with their target audience.

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