In 2011 Coca-Cola started its Share A Coke campaign in Australia and expanded to over 50 countries before going viral in the US in 2014. The company replaced its logo on bottles and cans with over 250 of the most popular first names among teens and Millennials. Coca-Cola also invited consumers to visit Shareacoke.com to personalize virtual Coke bottles and share them with friends via social media using the hashtag #ShareaCoke. The campaign netted more than 125,000 posts across all social networks, and saw 96 percent positive or neutral consumer sentiment, according to The Wall Street Journal and CIO.com. This kind of Social Media Success can be had by any business large or small, if they use the right strategy and planning! Check out these 5 keys to success...

First Key: Bring Your Page to Life!

Social Media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are all about sharing, so don't be afraid to express yourself! Share your experiences, your funny stories, and what inspires you. Successful Social Media Marketers realize that Clients like to interact with people and establish relationships.



Experiment with a variety of media posts that add a human factor to your brand. At Kind Hearted Images we like to show personal interest in our Clients by asking opinion based questions and starting engaging conversations. However, this brings us to a controversial point....Auto-Response Tools!



Kind Hearted Images is definitely Anti-Auto-Response! Many “Big Businesses” don’t have the time to give live responses, but we prefer to make the time and personally interact with our followers. Doing this not only gives our Social Media pages life, but allows us to start and grow friendships with clients. So our suggestion would be to provide unique replies to comments on your page.



Second Key: Content...Quality over Quantity!

Before a Client reads captions, researches services, or checks the number of followers...it’s the overall content of your feed/page that tells them whether or not they want to do business with a you. They’ll ask themselves: “Does this brand appeal to me? Does it meet my needs? Is this company professional and reliable?” The key on any Social Media network is to create inviting, professional, and consistent content. An easy way to do this is to make sure that any pictures or videos you post are clear, edited, and framed correctly. Be cautious when using picture/video taken on a cell phone, especially if the cellular camera is below 12MP.



In addition to quality pictures and video you want to ensure that your Social Media content is directly linked to the services and products you offer. That means no random Memes, no gym pics, and no pics of your latest night out...sorry! Your page will only stand out as professional if your content has a consistent underlying theme related to your brand and industry.



Third Key: Bankable Use of Instagram Hashtags!

Have you heard of SEO’s? Search Engine Optimizers. Internet search engines, like Google and Bing, use algorithms that calculate the number of times a keyword or phrase (whatever words/phrases the user types into the search box) is used on a webpage. The webpage with the highest number of hits will appear first on the search engine’s results list.



Applying the principles behind SEO’s to Instagram hashtags can be very profitable, in that you direct traffic from the search box directly to your page. For example, if I were planning a Wedding, and wanted to find a jeweler, I could search “#weddingrings” on Instagram and find 968,559 post of wedding rings. Who post get’s the #1 spot? That’s determined by the post with the most likes, comments, and yes...hashtags that use the keywords: “ring” “wedding ring”, and “wedding”. In order to take advantage of this marketing strategy, it is a good idea to do a little research to find out what trending industry specific hashtags consumers are searching for. As a side note here...try to avoid becoming an excessive hashtagger! Thankfully, Instagram has put a limit on how many hashtags one can use in any one comment.



Fourth Key: Plan it Out!

Social Media Planning is crucial to your success! There are a number of Apps to help with this aspect of Social Media Marketing, in fact, Facebook offers it’s own version of a planning tool, with it’s in-site Insights (say that 5 times fast LOL) Draft and Scheduling Tools. These tools allow you to determine when your feed/page gets the most activity, so you can post on days and times when your followers are actually looking at your page. At Kind Hearted Images, we find it helpful to know which post are getting the most attention so that we can adjust our strategy and planning according to what our clients need.



So when you are looking for a good Social Medial Planning tool make sure that it offers:

  • Storage for pictures/video,

  • A calendar to plan out future post,

  • Analytics that help you calculate your page reach and engagement, and

  • Ability to respond to comments and questions left on your page.

The bonus is finding a tool that allows you to research trending Hashtags.



Check out the 3 Planning Tools we’ve used below*.



Fifth Key: Scheduling  

Our last key is personal organization! After you get the perfect Social Media Planning tool, you still need to upload pictures/video, create catchy captions, respond to comments, and insert industry appropriate hashtags. So set aside time weekly or monthly to plan out your Social Media campaign. Do EVERYTHING...decide on the weekly/monthly theme or special, edit pictures/video, create catchy captions, upload pictures and video, and insert industry appropriate hashtags. That way all you have to do each day is make sure posts are uploaded to the social network, and of course, you will respond to comments as they come in;).  



Social Media is the hottest tool in the Marketing World! According to Hubspot.com , 92% of all Marketers indicated that their social media efforts have generated more exposure for their businesses! With these 5 keys Small Businesses can enjoy the same Social Media success as Coca-Cola, Target, and Starbucks!



Do you own a Startup or Small Business?

What has been your Social Media strategy and experience?

*Planoly, Hootsuite, and Later