Question: How to improve your Social Media Skills as an Influencer?
Answer: You follow some basic steps as told us by Elle Bulger, Social Media Manager for McGregor Socks.
What Erika Wears: How do you think Social Media helps the Fashion industry?
Elle: Social Media makes for a full experience with a brand. Let’s take a retailer as an example; even though most purchases (90%) are still made in store, many of those customers looked up that store’s product offerings online before-hand. Social Media can give you a taste of the trends before you visit the store, or can update you on a sale that might incentivize you to check it out. Then, post-purchase, you can give your feedback to that store through Social Media. I often tweet companies if I have feedback– good or bad. I also tag stores and brands on Instagram if I want to give them credit. Chances are they’re going to validate my post. I love how social media makes a big brand accessible to individuals and fosters community.
WEW: What’s the best way to start a conversation with other users on Social Media?
E: Hashtags are definitely useful. Search for something you’re interested in talking about and then jump in on those conversations people are already having. That’s kind of where the real interaction starts.
WEW: What are some thing that you noticed make people more active online?
E: Social media campaigns that require users to post something and then nominate their friends, have a lot of power. Think of the ALS bucket challenge – even Obama accepted that challenge! My little brother got nominated while we were in the UK last summer. We walked for 30 minutes with a big, heavy bucket of ice so that he could do the challenge on London Bridge. It was epic. Also mutual interests. Hashtags are big but you have to initiate.
WEW: If a brand or influencer is trying to develop its social media skills, what are some key points to follow?
E: Before you launch any personal or company brand on social media, do some research on your competitors – look at what type of content they are sharing, listen to their social voices, take note of their style of photography,etc. Ask yourself ‘how will my content be different? Why would someone want to follow me instead of X competitor?’ I often find it useful to choose 2key metrics (ex: price vs. tone of social voice) and map out where thecompetitors fall – this helps me visualize what spaces are crowded, and where the opportunity for differentiation is. Also, think about what channels are most appropriate for this brand. I tend to think less is more. There are somany brands that have gone on every social media platform when the reality is that many are redundant. A fashion brand doesn’t need to showcase its lookbook on Pinterest if it is already on its website. Choose your social media platforms carefully and then put your energy into perfecting those.
WEW: For fashion, which Social Media platforms do you think are the most important?
E: Fashion is so visual, so I would say that Instagram is the most important. But Facebook continues to be a necessary ‘hub’ for all of your online content to connect to. I read an article last month arguing that Facebook is as important as a brand’s website. I tend to agree.
WEW: How about Snapchat?
E: It will be interesting to see how Snapchat develops. I haven’t made up my mind about its use for brands yet. It is definitely a fun method of communication that seems to be very popular with teens – it is my little brother’s main source of communication. He uses it to update me on his university happenings all the time. On a separate note, I think there is a big opportunity for brands and public figures to utilize Periscope (thinking behind the scenes of fashion shows, exclusive interviews with celebrity endorsers,etc.)
WEW: Do you have any advice for influences trying to gain more following?
E: Curate your content on each platform. People aren’t going to want to follow you on multiple platforms if the content is exactly the same. Each social platform has a purpose – Twitter is more focused on news, where as Instagram can focus on showing items of the day, or happenings at head office. But if you do think a post is appropriate for multiple platforms, write the post on each platform separately, DON’T simply share your Instagram to Twitter and Facebook. Also be the first mover. It’s one thing for you to use 20 hashtags in all of your posts and expect people to engage with you. It is another to click on one such hashtag and engage with 20 other people who recently used it. Everytime your post an Instagram for a brand, try to go into the previous post and engage with every account that interacted with that photo. Then, for each hashtag used, reach out to another 20 accounts that recently used that hashtag and posted relevant content. If you are engaging with a newaccount, engage with a comment. If you are engaging with somebody who has already engaged with your brand, liking their photo is validation enough. I know this sounds tedious and time-intensive, but it works while you are in the rapid growth stage. Obviously this isn’t possible once you reach the thousands of followers mark, but by that point, your followers will likely come more easily without you reaching so aggressively.