How To Grow Your Small Business Using Instagram

Small Business marketing using Instagram

Instagram is an online mobile application that is used for sharing photos and videos. Instagram is following in the footsteps of Facebook and Twitter and has fast become a very popular social media tool. Instagram was originally developed so that people could apply different filters to photographs that they had taken on their mobile phones and would allow them to easily upload and share these photos with friends (or account followers) using the Instagram application. More recently video was introduced to Instagram it can now be uploaded, but Instagram video clips are limited to between 3 to 15 seconds long.

Why are businesses turning to Instagram?

*There are more than 300 million Instagram users worldwide.
*Approximately 70 million photos are uploaded per day.
*The account is ‘free’ to set up so there are low barriers to entry.
*It is a medium that allows for easy sharing of content 24 hours a day.
*What sort of success have businesses achieved using Instagram?
*Businesses such as Levis, L’oreal and hundreds of others have been able to use the tool to:
*To increase awareness of their products and services.
*To increase brand recognition.
*To showcase their community and pro bono work to inspire and attract prospective customers to engage with their product, service or brand.
*Run successful promotions, competitions and giveaways.

Small Business marketing success with Instagram

Instagram appears to be particularly popular with product based businesses due to its visual nature. Many businesses that are product based such as clothing, jewellery, make up or even food based business have achieved success using Instagram. This is because the application allows for photos to be posted and shared of people either wearing or using these products. For instance, a food manufacturer might post photos of someone cooking with, sharing a meal, or entertaining friends using their food products. This success is not exclusive to big brands as many small businesses have been able to leverage the power of Instagram to engage their clients. For instance, Melbourne based café The Kettle Black had over 45,800 followers in March 2016 they have achieved this through the use of attractive photographs of their food and images of cafe meals that Instagram users would be attracted to, as well as using hashtags that foodies, food bloggers and other Instagram users would be interested in or search for.

Influencer marketing

Bloggers, social media stars and media personalities have amassed a loyal following online with hundreds and sometimes thousands of people following their Instagram accounts. This ‘influencer’ group means that there are several eyeballs there ready to see your product or service. The audience has already been built for you. The engagement has already been formed and tapping into this by getting your product uploaded onto their Instagram feed or featured by a blogger or popular Instagram account holder will help you to grow your audience more quickly. Therefore taking the time to identify key ‘influencers’ in your industry and how you can tap into this is important.

Hashtags – What are they?

How can they be used to increase business exposure?

I suggest that if you are interested in getting onto Instagram you spend some time up front doing your Hashtag research. Hashtags are tags that you can add in a caption of a photo that you upload. To create a hashtag you need to use the # symbol at the front of the tag and then add a keyword or several keywords without spaces after the hash symbol. For example, you might post a product image of pair of jeans. Your hashtags could be: #fashion #style #jeans #lovethatstyle. You may already be familiar with hashtags as they are also popular on Twitter but if you are not take a look online to see some examples of how they are being used. The purpose of the hashtag is to tag your photo to a subject or topic category that is ‘searchable’ or ‘popular’ on Instagram.

Remember:

*No spaces in your hashtags
*No special characters can be used in your hashtags [email protected]$&

Instagram includes a powerful search feature so if posts are set to ‘public’ you can use hashtags to tag your photos and videos so that the content becomes easier to search and becomes more accessible to the public. That means when someone runs a search and is exploring that ‘search term’ your content may be discovered which leads to more people finding out about your business or brand.

Some hashtags are very popular so it’s important to identify the ones that are most relevant to your industry. The aim of the game is really to get people talking, liking, following and sharing your content. Hashtags help to get the word out if used effectively so take some time to find out how to use these to get the best out of your content.

Management by Objectives Increases Effectiveness

What does it mean to be a manager? While the skills to be an effective manager are many and the exact mix of skills necessary will vary from job to job and sector to sector, most writers on business and management agree that successful management involves the planning, organising, leading and controlling of resources, including personnel, to efficiently and effectively achieve organisational aims.

If you do any of these things, then you are a manager, whether or not the word “manager” appears in your official job title. However, many managers, especially ones new in the role, don’t feel well-prepared for the job and consequently, need advice and guidance in how to begin to fulfill their new role in a way that is effective and satisfies the requirements of superiors.

Know that, although there are no absolute measures of managerial effectiveness, nevertheless there is broad agreement that when a manager satisfies the aims and goals of the organisation he or she works for, effectiveness has been achieved. The problem is in defining exactly what these aims and goals are and then laying out a format of standard operating procedures that managers can follow to become more effective in achieving them.

One such way is the KPI, or Key Performance Indicator, a well-known approach where the job requirements of a management role are specified in a list of qualities, skills and outcomes written down on paper, with important ones subdivided into smaller subgoals with a numerical target attached, such as number of units sold, percentage increase achieved or number of times completed in order for the manager’s performance to be deemed satisfactory.

In particular, one of the most famous versions of the KPI solution is the “Management by Objectives” approach of Peter Drucker, the renowned writer on management issues. This is where the aims and goals of the organisation are arranged and presented as “Objectives” that must be fulfilled and then managers are evaluated on how well they contributed to the achievement of those objectives.

The downside to this approach is that it is often very difficult to apply in the real-life workplace. Typically, many problems arise and a whole range of issues complicate the achievement of these objectives, which can sometimes suggest that the idea itself is not all that great. However, the general consensus in business is that it is felt to be a practical construct and a useful description of “how things ought to be done”, even if things do not actually always end up being done exactly as the model describes. So, despite its difficulty in application, Drucker’s Management by Objectives remains an excellent way to envisage the goals of an organisation and create a template of performance for managers to strive for, while also acting as a map that guides the organisation in the achievement of its aims and the development of its future business trajectory.

In addition, Drucker also delineates eight practices that all effective managers follow -

1/ They ask “what needs to be done”

2/ They ask “what is right for the enterprise”

3/ They develop action plans

4/ They take responsibility for decisions

5/ They take responsibility for communicating

6/ They focus on opportunities

7/ They run productive meetings

8/ They think and say “we” rather than “I”

These eight practices of effective managers can be grouped into 3 areas – the first two practices give them the knowledge they need to do their job; the next four allow them to change this knowledge into action; the last two make sure that the whole team or organisation is responsible and accountable (not just the individual manager).

So a commitment by organisations to implement, at least as a broad framework, Drucker’s Management by Objectives and a commitment by managers to perform the eight practices described above will lead to greater movement towards organisational goals and a marked increase in managerial effectiveness.

How to Create a Successful Facebook Business With These Essential Tools

Facebook offers a multitude of tools that will help your business excel such as Social Ads, Pages, Beacon, Insights, Platform, Polls. These tools are there to help you in building your brand on your Facebook Page while attracting visitors and future clients.

It’s wise to start by learning all about these tools. This will save you a lot of time in the long run. In the following section you’ll learn how this all ties together which will show you how essential these tools are in running a successful Facebook business. You can learn all about these tools by going to the business section at Facebook.com.

Social Ads

What makes social ads so powerful and unique, is their direct interaction with the news feeds of your friends and fans. This gives you an advantage because anyone who has added you as a friend will see information about your business directly on their profile.

This is also an advantage because you can directly control who sees your ads, which helps you to target your traffic without much effort. As with any kind of marketing, targeting your traffic has proven time after time to raise your conversions.

Facebook Pages

If you have a business, you definitely should create a Facebook page. Make sure that you create a page and not a profile. They are not the same thing. The Facebook page you create will be your businesses’ profile page. Additionally it helps your brand image.You know when someone on Facebook interacts with your site, that you’ve gained a potential customer.

People treat your page the same as they would any of their friends. They search and read things that they’re interested in. What’s great about Facebook is that anyone can post on your wall and share their opinion. Your Facebook page is a playground for your creative genius to come to life and shine. The more apps, quizzes, surveys, contests, or starting of groups you do, the more people will want to interact on your page. You should base your activities around your niche and the image you are trying to build for your company.

Facebook Beacon

There is another service called the Facebook Beacon that will help you promote your business to your friends and fans. Beacon allows Facebook to post your business news directly on your friends feeds so the interaction is steady and consistent.

You can also choose if you want your friends to get a message every time someone purchases one of your products. When people see that someone else purchased something, more times than not they will check out the product that someone else ordered. If you are on Facebook, you know how your page tells you every time one of your friends makes an update or posts pictures on their wall. Well this is kind of the same thing. It’s not intrusive and you don’t feel offended by it, you just know that this is the way Facebook works, therefore it is an excellent tactic to receive more sales. For this to work you will need to paste some code to your website.

Your company, service, or product will increase by word of mouth because when people share your page it encourages others to interact on your site.. If you are nervous that this will affect the user’s privacy or your business privacy don’t be because people always have the choice to deny updates. There are other options to protect your privacy as well as their’s.

Facebook Insights

Just like when you are marketing online and want to check the statistics about people interacting on your site and clicking your ads; Facebook Insights can do this for you when you are marketing on Facebook. Facebook Insights is the perfect tool to measure which campaigns are successful and which are not.

This is also an excellent tool to see if your products or services are spreading virally or not. Facebook Insights is such a impactful tool, due to the word of mouth aspect. Insights additionally helps you gauge just how successful your attempts truly are. Facebook insights not only gauges how successful your are,but also gives you the data about demographics to help you target your traffic for the right audience.

Facebook Platform

The Facebook platform allows programmers to create apps that will work well with their site and enhance the customer’s experience. Creating a fun app is a great way to get people to interact with your page. With Facebook your goal is to create things that your friends want to share with others so your user base can multiply as it goes viral.

Quizzes, surveys, games, and interactive tools are a great way of engaging your fans. You can find some great ideas on the applications page of Facebook, to see which kind of apps will work for your business. Whatever you design needs to help build your brand on the site. Everything you build on your site should be based around building your brand image.

Facebook Polls

Another valuable tool that will assist you in determining other factors of your website is Facebook Polls. You can give a poll to a particular demographic to see if it is wise to launch a product to that demographic before you make the launch. This saves you from time, effort, and disappointment. Facebook Tools is very powerful and will work well because you already have the age, sex, and marital status of your users. This information is an excellent tool to help you focus your efforts on only those who are relevant.Taking advantage of these free Facebook tools will be a huge benefit to you and will help you build a very successful Facebook business!

Business Projects and Essential Resource Planning Software

In a world which idolizes successful and young entrepreneurs and thrives on the support of large economies, it is not surprising that businesses are increasingly wary of where their land, labour and capital are getting utilized. Add that to the fact that this era sees its epitome of technology today, and constantly out-does itself owing to the vigorous competition prevalent in the corporate world. What you are now faced with is a gap that begs to be filled by resourceful computer software with an efficient, speedy and user-friendly interface. Welcome to resource planning software.

The responsibilities of project managers require them to be highly vigilant of everything that goes on about them. Resources, time and the available team are each, in themselves, independent factors in the equation and in direct need of separate management. Apart from that, and more importantly, the project needs to be supervised and it needs to be ensured that it keeps on moving in the right direction. With this sort of burden resting on one, or on a group of persons, errors in judgment and mistakes are bound to occur. The usage of excellent resource planning software for the assistance of the project manager mostly or completely eliminates mis-judgements, and leaves no room for human error. The project manager can then focus on more pragmatic issues rather than simply manually supervising each task as it is done.

Furthermore, in the wake of the failure of large economies worldwide, which puts immense financial and psychological pressure on businesses, such software provides the user with an outline of the whole fiscal year in the form of a more interactive medium that they can get in touch with ahead of time. Deadlines can be met with greater ease as targets are reached with much more consistency. The formulas fed into the database of such excellent resource planning software display realistic and achievable targets based on past information and projected future figures. These figures when made visible to all parties involved (employees, clients) culminate in the coming together of all components in a business to increase profits of current years and still stay posted about future investment plans.

Resource planning software is also practical in its usage. The user-friendly interface usually consists of bright colours to define and highlight important projects for easy identification. It is compatible and lets the user experiment with spread sheets (with excellent templates already made available) and e-mail clients for straightforward no-nonsense handling and online transfer of data. The representation of information using appropriate charts, flow diagrams and animations aids the retention of relevant instructions for the employees and creates an easily interpretable picture for the project manager. Hands-on experiences provided let you drag and drop items onto the timelines, spread sheets flowcharts etc. A more contemporary version of the software might even inculcate touch sensitive interfaces making the hand-on experience quite literal. It will then be possible to operate the software using touch-tablets.

All these features render all previous existing techniques, all the expensive stationery quite useless as well as proving this software to be a necessity for all project managers in large businesses worldwide. The hassle of paper documents can now be a thing of the past and an enterprise’s accounts, resource processing, comparison of projected and actual figures can all find ample, secure space within the boundaries of such revolutionary software. This will let businesses compete well and excel in the ruthless race that the commercial world now takes the shape of.

Managers can plan their resources efficiently by using eResource Scheduler, an efficient resource planning software. This software to plan resources will help you to know more about accurately predicting resource requirement for your office.