10 How-To Videos That Really Work (And Why)

10 How-To Videos That Really Work (And Why)


Have you ever learned how to do something with the help of an internet search?

The answer is most likely a resounding “yes.” Most recently, I taught myself how to fold a fitted sheet with a helpful video from homemaker extraordinaire, and friend of Snoop Dogg, Martha Stewart.

Videos are an especially compelling way to learn how to do something online because, well, the video shows you exactly how to do it. I’m not alone here, either — most customers would prefer to watch a marketing video rather than seeing an ad.

So if you’re among the 45% of marketers who are adding video content to their strategy this year, there could be a lot of value in making videos specifically for those in your audience who are trying to learn how to do something, too.

In this post, we’ll explore just how popular these searches are on YouTube and other platforms, and what you can learn from eight how-to videos about how to make great teaching videos of your own.

How-To Video Searches Are Popular

How-to searches are incredibly popular. Think about just your own life for a moment, and reconsider my question at the beginning of this blog post. They also may be a great opportunity for brands to show off their products.

According to WyzOwl’s 2018 Video Marketing Statistics Report, 72% of people prefer to learn about a product or service through video.

Video marketing is growing, and so is the number of platforms it can be seen on. While Youtube and Vimeo used to be the primary place to find videos, consumers now similarly use social platforms like Facebook and Instagram to learn about brands and products.

10 How-To Videos to Learn From

1. How to Fold a Fitted Sheet

You may recognize the title of this how-to video — it’s the one I mentioned earlier in this very blog post. Are you always geting stymied when putting away fitted sheets on laundry day like me?

What I love about this video is how it showcases personality. It’s a simple how-to video of humans demonstrating how to do something, without any animations or high tech features, but it’s still extremely effective at teaching the viewer. Stewart and her guests make jokes about how hard it is to fold the sheet — Stewart even joking that her inability to do so led to her divorce — and they show the viewer how easy it is to get tripped up in the process. Stewart and her guests also have empathy for the viewer and show exactly how to avoid pitfalls along the way.

Takeaway for marketers If you want to create a how-to video “hosted” by a real, live human, make sure they act like a human. Videos are an easy way for brands to showcase personality, so put yourself in the shoes of your viewer, and infuse humor, sincerity, and empathy into your instructions. If the concept you’re explaining is complicated, tell the viewer that. If you had no idea how to use your product at first, share that. Speaking like a human — instead of reading off a script like a robot — will make your video memorable, effective, and enjoyable, too.

2. How to Cook Perfect Pasta

Tasty on BuzzFeed shares cooking and recipe videos that frequently go viral on YouTube and other social media and reach millions of people every month. But this video isn’t one of Tasty’s trademark recipe videos — it’s one of several how-to videos that break down common or difficult cooking skills step-by-step.

In this video, Tasty uses hyperlapse to speed up the cooking demonstration and get the viewer the information they need as quickly as possible. This fast-paced filming style is eye-catching if it starts auto-playing in a social media feed, too. Tasty chose a smart how-to search term, too — there’s a ton of search volume around the phrase “how to cook pasta.”

Takeaway for marketers: Viewers prefer YouTube videos on the shorter side, so sped-up hyperlapse filming helps conserve time and creates a neat visual effect. Work backward and conduct keyword research to learn what terms your audience is searching for to find a topic to make your video about.

3. How to Escape Quicksand

Evidently, Princess Buttercup’s tragic fall into quicksand in The Princess Bride wouldn’t have been quite as terrifying in real life.

In this how-to video, Tech Insider uses captions and animations to break down a complicated concept. I wasn’t exactly searching for information on how to escape quicksand when I found this video, but the unique subject matter made me instantly click, intrigued. What’s more, the sound isn’t required — although it does add dramatic effect — which might make people more likely to click and watch all the way through, since many social media videos are watched on mute.

Takeaway for marketers: Your how-to videos don’t necessarily need to be about a dry topic related to your industry. If you create a fascinating piece of content that goes viral, you’ll generate interest in your brand that way. Animations and captions help to show — rather than explain — trickier concepts like quicksand, so consider these visual elements for high-level explanations. And if there’s a way to make your videos volume-agnostic, do so. Some videos will require narration or other sounds, but the visual elements mentioned previously could do the talking for you.

4. How to Blow Out Curly Hair

Anyone who’s ever gotten a blowout knows that it can be expensive and time-consuming to have it professionally done.

So Bustle cleverly made a how-to video that teaches viewers how to DIY and save money– a motivating factor behind many how-to online searches, I suspect. This video is also short, which MiniMatters suggests for enticing viewers to watch videos all the way through. YouTube counts a view as once a video has been watched for approximately 30 seconds, so viewers with short attention spans might be more likely to stick around for that long if they see a video is shorter, like this one.

Takeaway for marketers: Almost everybody wants to save money where they can, so think about ways your how-to video could help viewers do that when brainstorming topics. When filming, try to keep videos as short as possible to attract viewers and keep them watching all the way through to steadily increase your number of YouTube views.

5. How to Style a Blazer 3 Ways

In this short, sweet Instagram video, verified style influencer @PreviewPH shows off three ways to style a blazer from ForMe. This video is great for those who are interested in trying out new fashions but don’t exactly know how to wear items or accessories. In this video, she demonstrates three ways of wearing a blazer, which could accommodate the fashion styles of three different people.

Takeaway for marketers: How-to videos can be a great way to show off how a product works and how it can be used. This type of video is clearly promoting one specific blazer and brand, but it’s more valuable than a standard ad because it shows potential buyers how they can wear it. If people who are hesitant about a new fashion style see this how-to video, they might feel more confident in their purchase.

6. How to Asana: Planning with Asana calendar

Asana cleverly brands its how-to video series as “How to Asana,” and all of the videos in the series feature a consistent theme. All of the videos in this series are under two minutes in length, are hosted by the same person, and feature an eye-popping yellow background. The meat of the video consists of a screencast of someone using the Asana calendar tool, but these branding details bring life to what would otherwise be a rather boring video.

Takeaway for marketers: If you’re thinking about creating a how-to video series, take the extra time to make it memorable and recognizable. These efforts will make videos look more professional and will make viewers want to keep tuning in for more helpful videos if they know they can expect more.

7. How to Create an Animated GIF in Photoshop

Who else here loves GIFs? That’s right — everyone loves GIFs.

But before I watched the video above, I had no idea how easy it was to make my own. That’s the ideal reaction to a how-to video, by the way — “that was so easy.”

Adobe’s how-to video is a great example of a software demonstration video because it zooms in on only the necessary information. Instead of confusing the viewer by showing the entire Photoshop interface, the video features magnified animations of only the buttons and tools they need to accomplish the task at hand.

Takeaway for marketers: If you’re making a technology demonstration how-to video, consider how it will appear to any first-time product users watching. Try to minimize any confusion by only filming elements of the technology needed for your video so viewers can follow along on their devices.

8. How to Increase Your Facebook Reach and Outsmart the Algorithm

You might be hesitant to create videos to explain a complicated subject matter, but that could actually be the most effective medium to help your audience understand something.

In this video, my colleague Megan Conley breaks down the many nuances of Facebook’s News Feed algorithm in a clear and concise manner. Then, graphics, animations, and screencasts supplement what she talks about with data visualizations to make the stats and figures more memorable for the viewer. Finally, the video ends with helpful next steps viewers can take to solve the problem outlined in the video. The video isn’t about how to use HubSpot software at all — it’s only in the business of helping people get better results.

Takeaway for marketers: The most compelling how-to video might be one that doesn’t mention your product at all. Think about what questions your audience might be asking and establish your brand as a thought leader with helpful videos that don’t end with a sales pitch.

9. How to Fix a Chair with Noodles

This interesting Instagram video from @Crafty.Life.Hacks shows viewers how to fix a wooden chair by replacing missing wood with instant noodles. While this video is short and easy-to-follow it is fascinating because it teaches viewers about an alternative use for an every-day household food item.

Takeaways for marketers: This example shows how a product can have multiple purposes. While marketers will want to make how-to videos that show the primary purpose of their product, sometimes, it can still be helpful to think outside of the box and show off other ways your product could be used.

For example, if you’re selling a food product, you might want to craft a recipe video that shows how it can be used as an ingredient, or a DIY that shows how it can be used as a tool — like the video above.

10. How to Make Momofuku’s King Crab Noodle

In this Facebook video, shared by Vice’s food blog Munchies, Chef Max Ng shows viewers how to cook his grandmother’s King Crab Noodle recipe — which he serves at the Momofuku Ssam Bar in New York City. Although this video is on the longer side, he shows audiences a simple step-by-step cooking process that they can easily follow.

This type of video might be a helpful how-to example for local restaurants or food publications that want to show off their favorite recipes. Promotionally, this video also gives some great brand awareness to Munchies and the Momofuko restaurant.

Takeaways for marketers: You can get away with videos on the longer side if they clearly describe a step-by-step process like cooking. How-to videos can also be a great source for cross-promotional content. In the example above, Max Ng, Momofuko, and Munchies are all highlighted in an entertaining and informative way.

How to Make How-To Videos

Now that you have inspiration from real-life B2B and B2C brand videos, start thinking about how you could create helpful content for your audience.

Create buyer personas and use these to inform your strategy. What types of questions does your audience ask about your product? What questions do they ask about your industry? What problems does your product solve that you could demonstrate in a video?

Use tools like Google Trends and HubSpot’s Keywords tool to learn more about the types of searches your audience is conducting and what content you could create to answer those questions.





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How to Become a Social Media Consultant, According to 7 Successful Ones

How to Become a Social Media Consultant, According to 7 Successful Ones


Nowadays, social media is a critical component of any business’s marketing strategy.

There are over 3.2 billion people on social media globally. With such a large potential audience, it’s becoming essential for every company to use social media to reach new prospects, boost brand awareness, and market their products or services.

But oftentimes, marketing on social media platforms is easier said than done — and when you’re working at a small company with limited resources, it can be tricky (or even impossible) to hire and train a fully-staffed social media team.

If a company doesn’t have the resources to staff a social media team in-house, they aren’t out of luck — as an alternative, they can hire a social media consultant to help them increase their social media presence and grow traffic to their social accounts.

If you’re a social media consultant, you’re required to act as the voice, eyes, and ears of a client across various social platforms to properly engage with and grow an audience. While an undoubtedly rewarding role, it can be tricky — which is why we’ve gathered insights from X successful social media consultants.

If you’re interested in becoming a social media consultant but aren’t sure how to get started, or you’re hiring a social media consultant for your team but aren’t sure what to look for, keep reading.

How to Become a Successful Social Media Consultant

1. Build a portfolio of case studies, and produce and publish content that proves your worth.

Keith Kakadia, Founder and CEO Sociallyin.com, told me — “My advice to anyone who is trying to build a portfolio of clients as a social media marketing consultant would be to do a few things, starting with building out your portfolio of case studies. Many clients want to see the work you have done in the past for others successfully.”

“The second piece of advice I could give,” Kakadia adds, “is to produce and publish content that shows your expertise in the field of social media marketing. Having a blog or even writing on a channel like Medium can help you stand out from the crowd of social media consultants.”

If you’re interested in creating your own blog, take a look at How to Create a Successful Blog Strategy: A Step-by-Step Guide.

2. Network, network, network.

Akvile DeFazio, President of AKvertise, Inc., advises aspiring social media consultants to network: “The moment you decide you want to take the leap to become a social media consultant and eventually shift towards doing it full-time, I encourage you to begin networking and sharing your skillset and services with others, on and offline, even if you aren’t working for yourself just quite yet.”

“Relationships and building up your clientele can take time, so begin feeding your funnel as soon as you can. As someone who has always enjoyed networking, I didn’t realize just how valuable my network was until I announced that I was leaving my former employer to go out on my own. I imagined that as soon as I did, I would lose some ties as I wouldn’t be seeing industry peers and business owners in person as much, but to my surprise, many of them shared in my excitement and sent leads and clients my way.”

To begin networking, DeFazio suggests checking out places like meetup.com, joining Twitter chats regarding topics relevant to social media, and guest blogging to expand your reach and visibility. She also recommends researching podcasts that might be interested in having you as a guest, attending industry events such as pop-up networking events or conferences, and checking out your local chamber of commerce.

3. Create an engaging Instagram account.

Simone, a social media consultant and Founder of Savvy Simone, told me — “If you are hoping to become a successful Social Media Consultant, the first thing to do is create an Instagram and post frequently. Don’t worry too much about a logo or a polished website, that can come later.”

“Focus on growing a loyal following by providing value (social media tips and tricks) and sprinkling in some of your own personal life,” Simone added. “If you don’t have any formal experience, you can still attract potential leads by sharing your knowledge with the world. Be passionate about your new venture and make sure to spend time developing your own personal brand and online presence. Also, ask other social media consultants how they got started. Most are more than willing to chat with you!”

If you’re unsure how to grow an Instagram following, check out Instagram Marketing: The Ultimate Guide.

4. Timing is critical.

Amy Bishop, owner of Cultivative, LLC. and a Digital Marketing Consultant, told me it’s critical you remain practical when deciding when, and how, you’re going to create your own business — “Timing is typically one of the most difficult factors in deciding when to go out on your own. Only you will know when the time is right, but I suggest saving up about three to six months worth of living expenses, just in case things don’t go as planned.”

“Even if you don’t need the money,” she says, “it will save you some stress and likely prevent you from taking on clients that are a poor fit, or pricing yourself too low out of desperation to sign clients. Oftentimes (assuming it doesn’t break any contracts with your current employer), consultants will pick up a few clients before quitting their current job, to ensure they have a little bit of revenue flow — but I recognize sometimes that’s not an option.”

Additionally, Bishop mentions it’s vital you set up an LLC for your new business (it’s relatively inexpensive to set it up online), and keep track of expenses and income for tax purposes later on.

5. Prioritize lead generation.

Amy Bishop told me — “Lead generation is critical and, for many folks, the most stress-inducing part of starting your own business. There’s a huge demand for social media consultants — you just have to know how to find them. Start by reaching out to your network to let them know you’re offering consulting services. Ask them if they know of anyone that could use your services. Even if they don’t, they’ll likely keep you in mind for future reference.”

“Additionally, join local networking groups and associations. Try to identify folks with skills that don’t overlap with yours that you could partner with — for instance, folks that do web development, email marketing, or SEO, but not social media management. If you find yourself struggling to sign on clients, consider reaching out to agencies and asking for overflow work. You can keep your skills sharp and have some income coming in while you continue to work on new business.”

Ultimately, Amy insists if you’re passionate and dedicated to social media consulting, it’s worth the risk: “If you have experience managing social campaigns and you’re considering making the leap to owning your own business, I can’t begin to recommend it enough. For the right person, the benefits are limitless.”

6. Overdeliver in the beginning.

Keith Kakadia says — “My last piece of advice would be to overdeliver in the beginning as you start to build your brand.”

“You need an army of evangelists for you and there is no better way of accomplishing that besides overdelivering for all your clients and making them feel as if they are your only client.”

While you’re ultimately in-control of what packages you offer and at what price, consider going the extra mile early on — once clients’ begin seeing an increase in traffic and engagement from your services, they’ll be more willing to recommend you to another colleague or business, which is critical for your long-term success. Additionally, try including customer testimonials or reviews on your website to demonstrate your legitimacy.





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The Best 7 Ecommerce Software in 2019

The Best 7 Ecommerce Software in 2019


Ecommerce is a rapidly growing industry — in fact, online sales grew at almost four times the rate of total retail sales in 2018 and accounted for over half of the retail industry’s growth.

As demand for ecommerce increases, so does the number of software tools and platforms designed to help businesses capture leads, generate revenue, and grow. Finding and using effective ecommerce platforms can help your organization tap into the more than $500 billion consumers spent online last year.

If you’re shopping around for the best application to support your ecommerce business, you might be overwhelmed by the number of tools to choose from in 2019.

For example, some platforms are specialized for specific functions like building a website or analyzing traffic, while others integrate multiple components into a one-stop shop. Many have also developed ecommerce mobile apps that allow you to manage your online store right from your phone

Here, we’re going to show you some of our favorite ecommerce software for 2019, and help you decide which ones can help your organization grow better.

Online Point-of-Sale

1. Shopify

Spotify is one of the most widely recognized ecommerce platforms due to its comprehensive tool bundling and usability. Its easy-to-use software allows customers to create an intuitive online store, even if they have no technical experience.

The point-of-sale web hosting platform offers a suite of tools for businesses to sell their products — including branding, selling, and order management. Shopify helps its customers jumpstart their business with custom logos, names, and web domains before helping to scale their business by selling and marketing products on major sites like Facebook, Amazon, and Pinterest. Shopify is a comprehensive toolkit to help businesses do everything from building brand presence to payments and shipping.

Image courtesy of Shopify.

Pricing: A basic account is $29 per month, and advanced is $299 per month.

2. BigCommerce

BigCommerce is another online interface designed to help customers sell and grow their businesses through a website builder, customizable checkout processes, and SEO support.

The platforms offers inventory tracking and Amazon integration for ease of selling. BigCommerce also offers other integrations — Google Shopping, Mailchimp, and Instagram Shopping, to name a few — to reach your target audiences where they are.

No matter your coding experience, BigCommerce supports ready-made templates that can be tweaked as necessary. Known for its fast processing speed, BigCommerce is especially useful for new companies looking to demonstrate their brand as reliable and speedy.

Image courtesy of BigCommerce.

Pricing: Standard is $29.95 per month, Plus version is $79.95 per month, and Pro is $249.95 per month. Alternatively, you can ask for a custom Enterprise quote.

3. Magento

Magento Commerce, which is owned by Adobe, is a platform that is highly customizable, engaging, and secure. They offer products including order management, business intelligence, and a marketplace to help scale your business.

Magento offers software for small, mid-market, and enterprise businesses, but works especially well for larger clients. Its cloud-based services affords the platform greater flexibility and agility.

Additionally, Magento has unique solutions based on organization size, need, and industry to support your specific ecommerce goals. For example, their ‘Magento for Fashion eCommerce’ platform focuses on creating a dazzling mobile experience and targeting buying options, primarily meeting the needs of retail stores.

 

Image courtesy of Magento.

Pricing: Ask for a quote.

Website

4. Squarespace

Squarespace is best known for its sleek and easy-to-use web page builder. The software is a leader of website design and offers drag-and-drop templates. Users can either customize their site or use Squarespace’s ready-made designs. Best of all, the tool guides businesses through SEO best practices and domain strategies to boost page awareness and brand recognition.

Organizations can now also build email campaigns through Squarespace, connect with consumers through social media integrations, and track visitor behavior. Squarespace helps entrepreneurs, artists, restaurants, and a variety of other customers create a beautiful and professional online display.

Image courtesy of Squarespace.

Pricing: $12 per month for personal, or $18 per month for business. Alternatively, you can use the Online Store for $26 per month for Basic, or $40 per month for Advanced.

5. Wix

Wix is a super simple website builder that offers features for small online businesses. Choose from over 500 sleek templates or build custom web applications from scratch with Corvid by Wix, their serverless, hassle-free coding integration. Incorporate a blog, galleries, personalized SEO, and a custom domain to make an attractive and effective website.

Wix has ecommerce functionality and an intuitive interface for a reasonable price. It’s more effective for smaller business, but it’s difficult to scale up for larger businesses since it lacks multiple sales channels and other, more complex features.

Image courtesy of Wix.

Pricing: $23 per month for Basic, $27 per month for Unlimited, $49 per month for VIP, or $500 per month for Enterprise.

Analytics

6. Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a primary source of web analytics. The service tracks data relating to a business’s website, traffic, and user interactions. Google Analytics offers comprehensive reports and detailed dashboards to help businesses better understand the behavior of visitors and conversions.

For instance, the tool might help you better understand from which social or website sources your leads are finding your landing pages, or which blog posts convert the most visitors. If you’re looking to maintain, visualize, and implement large amounts of data, Google Analytics might be a good fit for your business. However, it can be daunting if you only need to keep track of a few insights, in which case, a simpler analytics tool might be more useful.

Image courtesy of Google Analytics.

Pricing: Free for the basic analytics tool. For Analytics 360, ask for a quote.

7. Looker

Looker is a data modeling platform that offers powerful analytics features to display business intelligence metrics on an intuitive dashboard. The software provides industry-specific insights through SQL that can inform your business decisions. For ecommerce users, Looker provides big data on how web page traffic influences conversions and how to identify trends that might boost brand performance. Through data visualization, embedded analytics, and sleek customized dashboards, Looker can help you effectively grow your business.

Image courtesy of Looker.

Pricing: Ask for a quote.

If you’re interested in growing your ecommerce website or scaling your business, check out HubSpot’s Free Inbound Marketing Software. The platform integrates an arsenal of tools that tracks a lead’s lifecycle as they transform from prospect to delighted customer. Capture, track, and analyze leads to drive conversions — all for free.





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10 B2B Social Media Strategies That Work For Any Industry

10 B2B Social Media Strategies That Work For Any Industry


B2B businesses are proof that any business can be successful on social media. Why? Because they’ve turned a niche industry that — admittedly — isn’t the most exciting into a playground for social content.

When I think about B2B companies with a great social media presence, a lot of examples come to mind: IBM, Google, HubSpot, and so many more. These companies do an amazing job of sharing content that interests and builds their audience — so much so that they don’t seem too concerned with broadcasting their products or services constantly.

For a B2B company to be successful on social media, their content needs to find the middle ground between being engaging and not disrupting their audiences’ experience on the platform. Ultimately, these companies need to figure out what their audience wants to see to truly reap the benefits of social media.

B2B companies have transformed the landscape of what it means to be a brand on social media. In order to engage and attract your own audience, then, consider the following strategies used in the B2B space that might lead your own social accounts to success.

10 B2B Social Media Strategies for Any Industry

1. Set SMART goals.

Like any other marketing channel, a social media strategy needs to be based off of goals in order to be successful. Defining specific, measurable KPIs for your company’s social media — whether they’re based on brand awareness or acquisition — will be the key to measuring success down the line.

To determine KPIs, you have to decide what success means to your brand. Are you trying to use social media as an acquisition channel? Do you want to increase your reach, or gain more traffic on your company blog? This will decide what metrics to track.

For instance, if your business is looking for leads, metrics like clicks and conversions are important. For brand awareness, it’s more vital to consider engagement, reach, and impressions.

Here is an effective example of a SMART goal for a company that is just starting to gain traction on social media:

Goal: To build brand awareness on social media.

Specific: I want to boost our company’s brand awareness by posting regularly and frequently on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook. I will increase our posts on Twitter from once to four times a day, post daily on Instagram, and increase weekly publishing frequency on LinkedIn and Facebook from four to seven times per week. Our content creators will increase their workload from creating two posts a week to three posts a week, and our designer will increase her workload from one asset a week to two assets a week.

Measureable: A 4% increase in engagement rate across the board is our goal.

Attainable: Our engagement rate increased by an average of 2% last month when we increased our weekly publishing frequency and spent more time on thoughtful, engaging copy.

Relevant: By increasing engagement rate, we’ll boost brand awareness and generate more leads, giving sales more opportunities to close.

Time-Bound: End of this month.

SMART Goal: At the end of this month, our average engagement rate across our social media channels will see a 4% lift by increasing our post frequency and concentrating on thoughtful, engaging copy.

2. Keep an eye on competitors.

Social media opens the door to your competitor’s marketing strategy, or at the very least, their social media marketing strategy. For larger companies, keeping tabs on your competitors is part of the territory. You want to know what campaigns they’re running to see if they’re successful. And if that company’s target audience is similar to your own, you can take inspiration from that campaign.

But keeping tabs on your competitors on social media isn’t at all about copying their strategies. Being involved in the same industry will lead to crossover with your audiences and their interests. If you see that your competitor isn’t responding to trending news, then maybe it makes sense for your brand to do so. Looking for these opportunities will differentiate you from your competition.

3. Share original content.

This may seem like a no-brainer to some, but many businesses establish their social media presence on curating content from other sources. The truth is, your audience can tell the difference between content that is original and creative versus something you posted just to say you were active on the platform that day.

Social media shouldn’t be
just a distribution channel. Social media marketers also need to be content marketers to have a positive impact on their brand.

If you’re having trouble coming up with original content everyday, it’s okay to scale back your operation. If you don’t have the bandwidth to post on every platform, spend your time on the channels where your audience is the most developed.

And if you need content creation inspiration, head to The Ultimate Guide to Content Creation.

4. Use multimedia.

There’s a reason social media marketers get excited when a social platform launches a new feature — it’s because it adds a new medium to play with and test with your audience.

Instagram Stories, Twitter polls, and LinkedIn documents are all perfect examples of utilizing the multimedia formats that are unique to each channel.

Creating and publishing multimedia content on your social media channels adds an interest factor that will help you earn your audiences’ attention.

Think of it this way — if you scrolled through Twitter and only saw text-based posts, you’d get bored pretty quickly. The reason Twitter is addicting is because every Tweet is different. In a 10-second scroll you might come across a meme, a poll, a video, a photo collage, and a gif. The same should be true for your brand’s feed.

When you think of social media content, you should be thinking about the story behind the post in addition to all the different ways you can tell it.

5. Highlight your employees.

Many B2B companies do a great job of spotlighting their employees, which allows the audience to put faces to the company and personalize the brand. This is important for small and large companies alike, because whether you’re selling computers to businesses or opening a neighborhood restaurant — people are the heart of your business.

Additionally, highlighting your employees is a good opportunity for employer branding. Employer branding increases your employees’ advocacy by giving them the ability to spread word-of-mouth about their place of work.

Showcasing your staff may also increase your reach and engagement. For instance, instead of posting a product photo, you might post a photo of the 20 people who created the product, which would likely be shared with those 20 peoples’ networks.

6. Have a distinguished brand voice.

Whenever your company posts a blog, edits a pillar page, or posts on social media, it gives you a chance to demonstrate your brand voice. Just like a customer would recognize your logo, you should strive for them to be able to recognize your brand voice, too.

Like any other marketing asset, your social content should always be aligned to your company’s perspective. Does your company like to poke fun at challenges, or offer advice? Some of the most popular examples of consistent brand voice on social are fast-food companies like Burger King or Wendy’s:

See Full Tweet Here

Wendy’s approach makes a lasting impression on consumers because of how different it is from every other brand. But you don’t have to make fun of a competitor in order to have a voice that stands out. Your brand voice can be friendly, casual, formal, snarky, humorous, serious, or any of the above.

If you’re having a hard time identifying your brand voice, try looking back at past blog posts or landing page copy. Take note of the emotion and tone in the copy, and try to convey that in your social messaging.

Having a unique brand voice also gives you the opportunity to stand out in an already crowded marketplace.

If you want more tips for building your brand voice from the ground up, here is a helpful slideshow to get you started.

7. Offer support.

Nothing is more frustrating than tweeting at a brand with a customer support issue and hearing radio silence. Even if you don’t have the bandwidth to create a separate Twitter account dedicated to support, keeping an eye out for these issues and replying to them right away is a good chance to rectify your customer relationship — and shows future customers that you’re there for them if a future problem arises.

8. Maintain consistency.

One of the hardest parts about posting on social media is maintaining consistency. Posting to every single channel every day takes a lot of time, content creation, and planning. If you’re just starting out, try spending time creating smart content that adds to your audience’s feeds instead of posting every day. It’s better to push out a well thought out tweet that adds to the conversation and encourages engagement than five quick blog links with just an article title as the copy.

Another way to maintain consistency is to create a publishing calendar and schedule posts ahead of time using a social media tool.

9. Experiment with content and posting times.

This is a step to take after you’ve proven that you can maintain a regular posting schedule and want to dive a little deeper into audience insights. There are always best practices for when and what you’re posting on social media, but the truth is that every audience is different, so you’ll want to run experiments to figure out what works best for your brand.

There are endless experiments you can conduct on your channels. Here are some ideas to inspire you:

  • Alternate between using questions and statistics in your copy to see which one pulls your audience in more.
  • Test different link positions to find out if it makes users more likely to click.
  • Add emojis to see if it increases interactions.
  • Post more frequently.
  • Post less frequently.
  • Put paid behind a video post and a still image to see which performs better.
  • Segment a different part of your audience to test how they react to an ad.
  • Test different amounts of hashtags to see if it affects impressions.
  • Spend more time replying to posts to find out if it increases your follower count.

Experimenting with your content is how you figure out your own best practices, which will always be more personalized than industry standards.

10. Engage in conversation

Social media was created to help people make connections with other people. Even though brands have entered and occupied the space for a while now, that sentiment hasn’t changed.

Your brand won’t be able to connect with your audience if all you’re doing is pushing your product at them.

It’s disruptive, and nobody wants to interact with a post that pulls them away from what they want their social feed to look like.

The key to staying relevant on social is to engage in the conversations your target audience is interested in having — even if doesn’t have much to do with your product. For instance, take a look at this tweet by HubSpot:

Screen Shot 2019-07-23 at 1.45.27 PM

See Full Tweet Here

This tweet has nothing to do with HubSpot’s product, but it does have to do with what HubSpot’s audience is interested in. As a company, HubSpot knows that its users and potential customers are interested in tech news and what’s happening in the business world. Therefore, it sparked conversation.

B2B companies aren’t the only ones who can use these strategies for social media, and they’ve already proven that these strategies can work for a variety of target audiences — so why not try employing some of these strategies on your own audience?





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10 Jobs Artificial Intelligence Will Replace (and 10 That Are Safe)

10 Jobs Artificial Intelligence Will Replace (and 10 That Are Safe)


As AI has grown smarter, more and more people are wondering, “Is my job safe?”

This is such a growing question that there’s even a website called, “Will Robots Take My Job?” With the website’s name speaks for itself. You can look up a job title and see the its likelihood of AI-driven doom. 

When we started looking up our own jobs with it, we were thrilled to learn marketing managers had only a 1.4% chance of our jobs being automated or replaced by robots and artificial intelligence. And although I breathed a sigh of relief that writing has only a 3.8% chance of being automated, it made me think about job roles that weren’t so lucky.

But, those with a higher percent chance of losing jobs to AI shouldn’t panic just yet. Although this website makes you think more deeply about the jobs that can and can’t be replaced, it’s not perfect.

Just like AI predictions, it’s probably not 100% accurate — simply because job titling isn’t always a one-size fits all approach. While one type of writer may draft adventurous novels, others might write news stories or blog posts. And while one marketing manager might manage social media marketing, another might manage content. 

While this site is pretty fun to explore, we highly recommend making your future career decisions based on expert advice. This will prevent you from unnecessarily panicking when AI could help your career rather than hurt it. And if you’re one of the few jobs in danger, experts can show you which skills will truly future-proof your career. 

To give you an idea of what jobs might be most vulnerable and which might be safe, we’ve compiled lists of jobs AI can and can’t replace based on advice from experts, stats from the website noted above, and other research.

But before we jump into that list, we’ll dive into the current state of disruption.

Artificial Intelligence Disruption is Already Happening

If you think job disruption by AI is limited to the assembly lines, think again: AI is doing a better job than humans at some aspects of sales and marketing, too.

AI can analyze sales calls far faster than any sales manager could — in fact, it would take nine years of nonstop sales call analysis for a human being to compete, and that’s if they didn’t take vacation or sleep. And AI is already being used to develop marketers’ content strategies and email marketing playbooks — it’s only a matter of time before it plays a bigger role in the process.

HubSpot co-founder and CTO Dharmesh Shah has a more positive outlook on the future of AI, In fact, he thinks bots and AI will make us better at our jobs and more secure in our careers, not the other way around.

The truth probably lies halfway between these camps — in many cases, AI will serve to make our jobs easier and will make us more effective and data-driven. But the fact remains that some jobs will be replaced by machines — it’s the essence of any industrial or technological revolution. The good news is; some jobs won’t be strictly replaced — they just might be adjusted to account for new technologies’ “careers.”

Based on the landmark 2013 study that inspired “Will Robots Take My Job?” we’ve rounded up some of the marketing and sales roles most likely to be replaced by robots, bots, and AI in the next few years.

This study analyzes the likely probability that a job will be replaced by automation and computerization — based primarily on the level of routine a job has and the specialized training and social intelligence required to complete it. It’s not an exhaustive list, but it gives you an idea of what your life could look like in a few years.

1. Telemarketers

Score: 99%

Why: You probably already receive robo-calls on behalf of various products and services, and career growth in the telemarketing space is expected to decline by 3% by the year 2024. This is largely in part because of the requirements to be successful: Unlike other sales roles, telemarketers don’t require a high level of social, or emotional, intelligence to be successful. Think about it — are you likely to purchase from a telemarketer? Conversion rates for direct telephone sales are typically less than 10%, making this role a ripe opportunity to be automated.

2. Bookkeeping Clerks

Likelihood: 98%

Why: Jobs in this role are expected to decline 8% by 2024, and it’s no surprise why — most bookkeeping is becoming automated, if it hasn’t been already. QuickBooks, FreshBooks, and Microsoft Office already offer software that does the bookkeeping for you that’s much more affordable than a person’s salary, so it’s no surprise this job has such a high probability.

3. Compensation and Benefits Managers

Likelihood: 96%

Why: This one is surprising because the job growth is supposed to increase 7% by 2024. But just because there’s demand doesn’t make you safe from automation. As companies grow in size — especially across multinational markets — a human and paper-based system can present more hurdles, time delays, and costs. Automated benefits systems can save time and effort for providing benefits to large numbers of employees, and companies like Ultipro and Workday are already being widely adopted.

4. Receptionists

Likelihood: 96%

Why: Pam predicted this back on The Office, but in case you’re not a fan, automated phone and scheduling systems can replace a lot of the traditional receptionist role — especially at modern technology companies that don’t have office-wide phone systems or multinational corporations.

5. Couriers

Likelihood: 94%

Why: Couriers and delivery people are already being replaced by drones and robots, so it’s only a matter of time until this space is dominated by automation altogether. At the same time, this space is expected to grow by 5% by 2024, so it might not happen as quickly as you think.

6. Proofreaders

Likelihood: 84%

Why: Proofreading software is everywhere — and we use it a lot here at HubSpot. From Microsoft Word’s simple spelling and grammar check to Grammarly and Hemingway App, there are a lot of technologies out there that make it easy to self-check your own writing.

7. Computer Support Specialists

Likelihood: 65%

Why: The field is projected to grow 12% by 2024, but with so much content on the internet with instructions, step-by-step guides, and hacks out there, it’s no surprise companies will rely more heavily on bots and automation to answer support questions from employees and customers in the future.

8. Market Research Analysts

Likelihood: 61%

Why: Market research analysts play an incredibly important role in the development of messaging, content, and products, but automated AI and surveys can compile this information more and more easily. GrowthBot, for example, can conduct market research on nearby businesses and competitors with a simple Slack command.

9. Advertising Salespeople

Likelihood: 54%

Why: As advertising shifts away from print and TV and towards web and social media landscapes, people simply don’t need to be managing those sales for marketers who want to buy ad space. More social media platforms are making it easy for people to buy space through free application program interfaces (APIs) and self-serve ad marketplaces to remove the salesperson and make it faster and easier for users to make money — and that’s reflected in the projected 3% decline in the industry.

10. Retail Salespeople

Likelihood: 92%

Why: If you’ve visited a mall, car dealership, or furniture store lately, you might not have been assisted by a salesperson at all from start to finish. Companies are democratizing the shopping experience with features like self-checkout, and the modern buyer is much more internet-savvy and more likely to do internet research and make a buying decision on their own.1

1. Human Resources Managers

Likelihood: 0.55%

Why Not: It’s kind of in the name — but your company’s Human Resources department will likely always need a human at the helm to manage interpersonal conflict with the help of non-cognitive and reasoning skills. The field is projected to grow 9% by 2024 as companies grow and need more robust structures for supporting and helping employees.

2. Sales Managers

Likelihood: 1.3%

Why Not: Sales managers need a high level of emotional intelligence to hit their quotas each month, network and collaborate with customers, and motivate and encourage the larger sales team. Managers also have to analyze data and interpret trends, and the high levels of intelligence required — plus the constant need to adapt to new situations — makes this role safe from automation.

3. Marketing Managers

Likelihood: 1.4%

Why Not: Marketing managers have to interpret data, monitor trends, oversee campaigns, and create content. They also have to nimbly adapt and respond to changes and feedback from the rest of the company and customers, making this another human-forward career AI isn’t quite ready to replicate.

4. Public Relations Managers

Likelihood: 1.5%

Why Not: Successful PR managers rely on a network of relationships and contacts to procure press placements and buzz for the companies they represent, making this another completely safe role. PR managers who have to raise awareness around an issue or mission need a particularly human touch to raise funds or get people to participate in a campaign, too — and jobs are expected to grow 7% by 2024.

5. Chief Executives

Likelihood: 1.5%

Why Not: It’s nearly impossible to automate leadership — after all, it’s hard enough to teach it. Chief executives have to inform broad strategy, represent companies’ missions and objectives, and motivate huge teams of people working for them. Companies may answer to stakeholders and boards of directors, who likely wouldn’t want a robot giving them an earnings report, either.

6. Event Planners

Likelihood: 3.7%

Why Not: Event planning is a growing field, and if you ask anyone on our events team here at HubSpot, whether you’re planning an event for employees, customers, or an industry event with tens of thousands of attendees, the planning process has many, many moving parts involved. Planners have to coordinate and negotiate with vendors, contractors, and freelancers to make things come together, and the organizational and people skills involved will make this another near-impossible role to automate.

7. Writers

Likelihood: 3.8%

Why Not: (I breathed a sigh of relief on this one.) Writers have to ideate, create, and produce original written material. AIs can do some of this with title suggestions, writing prompts, and automated social media messages, but blog posts, books, movies, and plays will likely be written by humans for the foreseeable future.

8. Software Developers

Likelihood: 4.2%

Why Not: Software engineering and development is hard enough for human beings to do, and the time and skill investment needed to create applications, software, and websites will be tough to replicate — especially since developers need to execute perfectly to create great products for customers. The field is expected to grow by 19% by 2024, so if you’re a software developer, you’re sitting pretty for now.

9. Editors

Likelihood: 5.5%

Why Not: While some of the load can be lifted from editors with the automated proofreading technology mentioned previously, editors have to review writers’ submission for clarity, accuracy, comprehensiveness, and originality. While there is some software that can spot-check for clarity and scan for plagiarism, the editor role must be carried out by a human in order to read work as another human would.

10. Graphic Designers

Likelihood: 8.2%

Why Not: Although there are some AIs taking small (and somewhat creepy) steps in the graphic design space, graphic design is both artistic and technical, making it an ideal role for a human being to carry out. Like writing, all work needs to be original and created to the client’s wishes, so graphic design needs to be created with a human artist and editor all-in-one.

Navigating Artificial Intelligence

To get a better idea of the state of AI and how it could impact future job landscapes, we talked to two experts: Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientists at Square 2, and Kate O’Neill, author of Tech Humanist and Founder of KO Insights.

“Right now, marketers and sales leaders are applying AI to high-level generic situations like personalization and selection of content to present to prospects,” says Lieberman. “Another great example is smarter email marketing like knowing when people open emails and using that intelligence to send at those times.”

He adds, “What’s great about this application is it does produce better results–which should be the goal of smarter AI-powered marketing.”

When asked about industries that could evolve do to AI, Lieberman says, “It’s highly likely that AI will supplement the advice, guidance, and recommendations from marketing agencies.”

“As an example, today consultants help companies know what to do, when to do it and how to do it but soon AI-powered insights and recommendations software will give marketers their to-do list and that list is prioritized based on their specific goals,” he explains. “This application is going to help them improve program performance every single day.”

When it comes to roles and tasks AI can’t replace, O’Neill explains that jobs which require emotional intelligence will be safer in the immediate future. 

“This is going to be a continuously moving target, but for the time being, what AI can’t do well is use emotional intelligence, understand situational context, make judgment calls, and generally see nuance and meaning like we do,” she says.

“That means any kind of job that benefits from these kinds of human attributes is better off done by a human. A computer or robot may assist you in performing efficiently, but for now, you’re the one who adds the expertise on how to perform appropriately,” she added.

However, she explains that this could change in the long-term. 

“Machines will become increasingly more sophisticated and will be able to distinguish between, say, happy and sad occasions for people, or interacting with children or adults, or what tone to use in what message, and so on. And those examples are just the tip of the iceberg.”

But, although some jobs may change drastically in the near or distant future, she emphasizes that AI will allow humans to spend more time on work they’re passionate about rather than time-consuming tasks. 

What’s exciting about this is it means we have a stage of development ahead of us where we can create more meaningful work for humans while also helping make machines more capable of offering contextually appropriate interactions.”

How to Future-Proof Your Career

While AI will take over smaller, more time consuming tasks, it can’t easily replace human emotions and behaviors that customers and audiences identify with. Even today, some customers prefer to talk to human customer service reps over bots when they have a problem.

Additionally, a company might always need a chief executive or managers with strong emotional intelligence or other teamwork-oriented skills.

Similarly, AI might not easily replace a creative role or service that requires employees to think outside the box or try something that hasn’t been done yet.

The best way to fend off the robots is to determine the skills and traits that are irreplaceable, hone in on them, and improve upon them whenever you can.

For example, if your job requires a lot of tasks that could be done by a robot, you might want to consider taking on a project that will teach you about management or leadership.

If your company offers professional development, you could also take a course in a more creative skill, like public speaking, writing, or graphic design. This way, if your job shifts, you might easily transition into another role or seem more valuable to a hiring manger due to your unique combination of logistical and creative skills. 

To learn more about how you can keep working with AI to improve your work and optimize efficiency, read our research report here.

Want to dive even deeper into these topics? Mike Lieberman and Kate O’Neill, quoted above will be speaking at INBOUND 2019 — running from September 3-6. O’Neill will run a session titled, “Technology, Your Company, and the Future of Meaningful Human Experiences,” while Lieberman will host, “The Robots Are Coming—How to Use AI to Make Smarter Marketing Decisions.”





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9 Types of Organizational Structure Every Company Should Consider

9 Types of Organizational Structure Every Company Should Consider


Choosing the best organizational structure for your company, division, or team is a lot like picking out a new car.

At the most basic level, you’re always looking for something road-worthy — something that can take you (and your passengers) from point A to point B without a hitch.But beyond that, there are a lot of options to consider. Automatic or manual? Four-wheel drive or two? Built-in GPS? Leather interior? Flux capacitor? (Only if you’re going back in time, of course.)

In the world of organizational structures, the options you have to choose from include things like chain of command (long or short?), span of control (wide or narrow?), and centralization (centralized or decentralized decision-making?), just to name a few.

What’s the point of an organizational structure? As a business leader, do you even need one? As I said, org structures help you define at least three key elements of how your business is going to run.

As your company gets bigger, an organizational structure can also be helpful for new employees as they learn who manages what processes at your company.

Then, if you need to pivot or shift your leadership, you can visualize how the work flows would work by adjusting your organizational structure diagrams.

To put it simply, this chart like a map that simply explains how your company works and how its roles are organized. 

Here’s what each of those elements means to an organization:

Chain of Command

Your chain of command is how tasks are delegated and work is approved. An org structure allows you to define how many “rungs of the ladder” a particular department or business line should have. In other words, who tells whom to do what? And how are issues, requests, and proposals communicated up and down that ladder?

Span of Control

Your span of control can represent two things: who falls under a manager’s, well, management … and which tasks fall under a department’s responsibility.

Centralization

Centralization describes where decisions are ultimately made. Once you’ve established your chain of command, you’ll need to consider which people and departments have a say in each decision. A business can lean toward centralized, where final decisions are made by just one or two entities; or decentralized, where final decisions are made within the team or department in charge of carrying out that decision.

You might not need an org structure right away, but the more products you develop and people you hire, the harder it’ll be to lead your company without this crucial diagram.

(To dive deeper into what all of these different organizational structure components are, check out my earlier post, “The 6 Building Blocks of Organizational Structure.”)

In this post, we’ll explore how you can combine those components to form different types of organizational structures. We’ll also highlight the benefits and drawbacks of different structure types so you can evaluate which is the best option for your company, division, or team. Let’s dive in.

Mechanistic vs. Organic Organizational Structures

Organizational structures fall on a spectrum, with “mechanistic” at one end and
“organic” at the other.

Take a look at the diagram below. As you’ll probably be able to tell, the mechanistic structure represents the traditional, top-down approach to organizational structure, whereas the organic structure represents a more collaborative, flexible approach.

Here’s a breakdown of both ends of the structural spectrum, their advantages and disadvantages, and which types of businesses are suited for them.

Mechanistic Structure

Mechanistic structures, also called bureaucratic structures, are known for having narrow spans of control, as well as high centralization, specialization, and formalization. They’re also quite rigid in what specific departments are designed and permitted to do for the company.

This organizational structure is much more formal than organic structure, using specific standards and practices to govern every decision the business makes. And while this model does hold staff more accountable for their work, it can become a hindrance to the creativity and agility the organization needs to keep up with random changes in its market.

As daunting and inflexible as mechanistic structure sounds, the chain of command, whether long or short, is always clear under this model. As a company grows, it needs to make sure everyone (and every team) knows what’s expected of them. Teams collaborating with other teams as needed might help get a business off the ground in its early stages, but sustaining that growth — with more people and projects to keep track of — will eventually require some policymaking. In other words, keep mechanistic structure in your back pocket … you never know when you’ll need it.

Organic Structure

Organic structures (also known as “flat” structures) are known for their wide spans of control, decentralization, low specialization, and loose departmentalization. What’s that all mean? This model might have multiple teams answering to one person and taking on projects based on their importance and what the team is capable of — rather than what the team is designed to do.

As you can probably tell, this organizational structure is much less formal than mechanistic, and takes a bit of an ad-hoc approach to business needs. This can sometimes make the chain of command, whether long or short, difficult to decipher. And as a result, leaders might give certain projects the green light more quickly but cause confusion in a project’s division of labor.

Nonetheless, the flexibility that an organic structure allows for can be extremely helpful to a business that’s navigating a fast-moving industry, or simply trying to stabilize itself after a rough quarter. It also empowers employees to try new things and develop as professionals, making the organization’s workforce more powerful in the long run. Bottom line? Startups are often perfect for organic structure, since they’re simply trying to gain brand recognition and get their wheels off the ground.

Now, let’s uncover more specific types of organizational structures, most of which fall on the more traditional, mechanistic side of the spectrum.

1. Functional Organizational Structure

One of the most common types of organizational structures, the functional structure departmentalizes an organization based on common job functions.

An organization with a functional org structure, for instance, would group all of the marketers together in one department, group all of the salespeople together in a separate department, and group all of the customer service people together in a third department.

Blue diagram of functional organizational structure

The functional structure allows for a high degree of specialization for employees, and is easily scalable should the organization grow. Also this structure is mechanistic in nature — which has the potential to inhibit an employee’s growth — putting staff in skill-based departments can still allow them to delve deep into their field and find out what they’re good at.

Disadvantages

Functional structure also has the potential to create barriers between different functions — and it can be inefficient if the organization has a variety of different products or target markets. The barriers created between departments can also limit peoples’ knowledge of and communication with other departments, especially those that depend on other departments to succeed.

2. Product-Based Divisional Structure

A divisional organizational structure is comprised of multiple, smaller functional structures (i.e. each division within a divisional structure can have its own marketing team, its own sales team, and so on). In this case — a product-based divisional structure — each division within the organization is dedicated to a particular product line.

Green diagram of product-based divisional organizational structure

This type of structure is ideal for organizations with multiple products and can help shorten product development cycles. This allows small businesses to go to market with new offerings fast.

Disadvantages

It can be difficult to scale under a product-based divisional structure, and the organization could end up with duplicate resources as different divisions strive to develop new offerings.

3. Market-Based Divisional Structure

Another variety of the divisional organizational structure is the market-based structure, wherein the divisions of an organization are based around markets, industries, or customer types.

Pink diagram of market-based divisional organizational structure

The market-based structure is ideal for an organization that has products or services that are unique to specific market segments, and is particularly effective if that organization has advanced knowledge of those segments. This organizational structure also keeps the business constantly aware of demand changes among its different audience segments.

Disadvantages

Too much autonomy within each market-based team can lead to divisions developing systems that are incompatible with one another. Divisions might also end up inadvertently duplicating activities that other divisions are already handling.

4. Geographical Divisional Structure

The geographical organizational structure establishes its divisions based on — you guessed it — geography. More specifically, the divisions of a geographical structure can include territories, regions, or districts.

Yellow diagram of geographical divisional organizational structure

This type of structure is best-suited to organizations that need to be near sources of supply and/or customers (e.g. for deliveries or for on-site support). It also brings together many forms of business expertise, allowing each geographical division to make decisions from more diverse points of view.

Disadvantages

The main downside of a geographical org structure: It can be easy for decision- making to become decentralized, as geographic divisions (which can be hundreds, if not thousands of miles away from corporate headquarters) often have a great deal of autonomy. And when you have more than one marketing department — one for each region — you run the risk of creating campaigns that compete with (and weaken) other divisions across your digital channels.

5. Process-Based Structure

Process-based organizational structures are designed around the end-to-end flow of different processes, such as “Research & Development,” “Customer Acquisition,” and “Order Fulfillment.” Unlike a strictly functional structure, a process-based structure considers not only the activities employees perform, but also how those different activities interact with one another.

In order to fully understand the diagram below, you need to look at it from left to right: The customer acquisition process can’t start until you have a fully developed product to sell. By the same token, the order fulfillment process can’t start until customers have been acquired and there are product orders to fill.

Orange diagram of process-based organizational structure

Process-based organizational structure is ideal for improving the speed and efficiency of a business, and is best-suited for those in rapidly changing industries, as it is easily adaptable.

Disadvantages

Similar to a few other structures on this list, process-based structure can erect barriers between the different process groups. This leads to problems communicating and handing off work to other teams and employees.

6. Matrix Structure

Unlike the other structures we’ve looked at so far, a matrix organizational structure doesn’t follow the traditional, hierarchical model. Instead, all employees (represented by the green boxes) have dual reporting relationships. Typically, there is a functional reporting line (shown in blue) as well as a product- based reporting line (shown in yellow).

When looking at a matrix structure org chart, solid lines represent strong, direct-reporting relationships, whereas dotted lines indicate that the relationship is secondary, or not as strong. In our example below, it’s clear that functional reporting takes precedence over product-based reporting.

Teal diagram of matrix organizational structure

The main appeal of the matrix structure is that it can provide both flexibility and more balanced decision-making (as there are two chains of command instead of just one). Having a single project overseen by more than one business line also creates opportunities for these business lines to share resources and communicate more openly with each other — things they might not otherwise be able to do regularly.

Disadvantages

The primary pitfall of the matrix organizational structure? Complexity. The more layers of approval employees have to go through, the more confused they can be about who they’re supposed to answer to. This confusion can ultimately cause frustration over who has authority over which decisions and products — and who’s responsible for those decisions when things go wrong.

7. Circular Structure

While it might appear drastically different from the other organizational structures highlighted in this section, the circular structure still relies on hierarchy, with higher-level employees occupying the inner rings of the circle and lower-level employees occupying the outer rings.

That being said, the leaders or executives in a circular organization aren’t seen as sitting atop the organization, sending directives down the chain of command. Instead, they’re at the center of the organization, spreading their vision outward.

Multi-colored diagram of circular organizational structure

From an ideological perspective, a circular structure is meant to promote communication and the free flow of information between different parts of the organization. Whereas a traditional structure shows different departments or divisions as occupying individual, semi-autonomous branches, the circular structure depicts all divisions as being part of the same whole.

Disadvantages

From a practical perspective, the circular structure can be confusing, especially for new employees. Unlike with a more traditional, top-down structure, a circular structure can make it difficult for employees to figure out who they report to and how they’re meant to fit into the organization.

8. Flat Structure

While a more traditional organizational structure might look more like a pyramid — with multiple tiers of supervisors, managers and directors between staff and leadership, the flat structure limits the levels of management so all staff are only a few steps away from leadership. It also might not always take the form or a pyramid, or any shape for that matter. As we mentioned earlier, It’s also a form of the “Organic Structure” we noted above.

Screen Shot 2019-08-15 at 4.01.59 PMThis structure is probably one of the most detailed, It’s also thought that employees can be more productive in an environment where there’s less hierarchy-related pressures. This structure might also make staff feel like the managers they do have are more like equals or team members rather than intimidating superiors.

Disadvantages

If there’s a time when teams in a flat organization disagree on something, such as a project, it can be hard to get aligned and back on track without executive decisions from a leader or manager. Because of how complicated the structure’s design is, it can be tricky to determine which manager an employee should go to if they need approval or an executive decision for something. So if you do choose to have a flat organization, you should have a clearly marked tier of management or path that employers can refer to when they run into these scenarios.

9. Network Structure

A network structure is often created when one company works with another to share resources — or if your company has multiple locations with different functions and leadership. You might also use this structure to explain your company workflows if much of your staffing or services is outsourced to freelancers or multiple other businesses. 

The structure looks nearly the same as the Divisional Structure, shown above. However, instead of offices, it might list outsourced services or satellite locations outside of the office.

If your company doesn’t do everything under one roof, this is a great way to show employees or stakeholders how outsourcing of off-site processes work. For example, if an employee needs help from a web developer for a blogging project and the company’s web developers are outsourced, the could look at this type of chart and know which office or which person to contact outside of their own work location.

Disadvantages

The shape of the chart can vary based on how many companies or locations you’re working with. If it’s not kept simple and clear, there may be a lot of confusion if multiple offices or freelancers do similar things. If you do outsource or have multiple office locations, make sure your org chart clearly states where each specific role and job function lies so someone can easily understand your basic company processes. 

Navigating Organizational Structures

That concludes our exploration of different types of organizational structures. Keep in mind that what we’ve just looked at are simply archetypes — in real-world applications, organizations often use hybrid structures, which can borrow elements from multiple structure types.

Want to see some real-world examples of marketing team org structures from companies like GitHub and Rue La La? Download the complete resource, An Illustrated Guide to Organizational Structures.

To learn more about working on a marketing team, check out the 6 Building Blocks of Organizational Structure [Diagrams].





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Influencer Marketing Strategy Checklist & Template

Influencer Marketing Strategy Checklist & Template


If you’re a marketer looking to reach new audiences, partnering with influencers can be a great way to do that. It’s an incredibly effective strategy — in fact, nearly 49% of consumers look to influencers for product recommendations. 

As target markets get younger and more digitally connected, influencers can help organizations connect with consumers where they are: online. According to analysts at Twitter, organizations that used both brand and influencer Tweets saw a 5.2x increase in conversions.

 

But if you’re considering hiring an influencer for your brand, where do you even begin? It can be tricky to narrow down your goals, what type of influencer you want, and what goals you hope to meet with an influencer strategy. 

To help you narrow down your search and ensure your influencer strategy is as effective as possible, we’ve created a template and guidelines to help get you started.

Follow Along With Our Free Influencer Guide + Templates

Influencer Marketing Strategy Checklist

Take a look at the following 6 steps you’ll want to take when first creating and implementing an influencer strategy:

1. Define your goals.

Are you trying to increase brand awareness or drive engagement? Do you want to spruce up your lead generation method or do you want to build on the loyalty and goodwill of your existing audience? By clearly defining the end goal of your strategy, you can work your way backwards to determine the steps needed to get there. Using your goals as guiding lights will also define your strategy’s metrics for success — these will help keep your campaign on track.

2. Identify and define your audience.

Properly segmenting and identifying your audience can determine the effectiveness and success of your influencer campaign. Depending on your organization’s target personas or ideal buyer, you should group consumers by demographics, psychographics, buyer lifecycle stage, or preferred channel. After establishing your marketing goals, it’s easier to identify which audiences would best help you achieve them.  

3. Choose a type of campaign.

Guest posting, sponsored content, re-targeting, co-creation, competitions, mentions on social, discount codes, and more are terrific examples of influencer marketing campaigns. The method by which you promote your brand through an influencer depends on your goals and target audience’s preferences. 

For example, Audible partnered with best-selling author Tim Ferriss on his podcast, where his listeners could use his custom link to get a discount on Audible content. This partnership delivered a relevant offer to the target audience, benefitting Audible, Tim Ferriss, and all of his podcast listeners.

After you’ve decided the medium and campaign type, it’s time to create compelling content. Even if you have the most exciting campaign or best product-market fit, consumers will lose interest if your messaging or content doesn’t captivate them. Make it as easy as possible for your influencer to share your stuff — the better your messaging fits with their audience and is drafted and ready to go, the sooner your influencer will push your brand out to their audience.

4. Find your brand influencers.

If you were to reach out to random people to promote your offering, odds are that you wouldn’t get the results and value you were looking for. The partnership becomes extremely transactional — the organization is only interested in the influencer’s follower count and the influencer takes on a product endorsement role. Instead, an ideal influencer partnership is more of a brand ambassadorship — by putting the relationship with the influencer first and prioritizing influencer-brand fit over followers, it’s more likely your messaging will resonate

When researching influencers, your can search through relevant hashtags, see Instagram’s suggested users based on profiles you follow, or check out influencers your competitors are using to get ideas on where to look. 

5. Promote!

Once you’ve successfully identified your target market, found your ideal influencer, and created compelling content, all that’s left is promoting your new partnership! Go to your favorite social channels or draft a blog post to generate some buzz. 

6. Track your success.

It’s critical to track the performance of your partnership — track the traffic, engagement, conversions or the other metrics of success you decided when you determined your marketing goals. The is a lot of potential for high ROI from influencer partnerships, but it’s critical to see if and or how your influencer content performs better than your non-influencer content. Check in with your original goals to analyze your success and how to repeat them.

Influencer Strategy Template

Are you ready to try these influencer marketing strategies with your organization? Download our free strategy template and achieve your marketing goals today.

Influencer-marketing-strategy-checklist-1





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LinkedIn vs. Facebook: Which Is Best for Business?

LinkedIn vs. Facebook: Which Is Best for Business?


The slew of social media channels available today can paralyze even the most savvy business owners.

Where do you start? Which one is best? How do you avoid wasting time on channels that won’t bring in a solid ROI?

The struggle is real.

And, when it comes to Facebook and LinkedIn, the differences between the two can seem tremendous.

Facebook is for sharing pictures of your family vacation, connecting with old friends from school, and sharing viral videos — right? Meanwhile, isn’t LinkedIn meant for keeping track of colleagues and making professional connections that further your career?

The answer, of course, is yes.

But because both platforms are people-based, they provide a number of opportunities to reach your audience. In fact, 78% of American consumers have discovered products on Facebook.

On the other hand, LinkedIn is the most effective platform when it comes to delivering content and securing audience engagement.

Which leaves us with this question — which one should you choose to focus your efforts?

LinkedIn vs. Facebook: Which Is Best for Business?

Let’s recap quickly.

At its core, LinkedIn is a professional network that was initially created as a corporate recruitment platform. Now, it boasts many features similar to traditional social media sites, including status updates, blogging capabilities, and private messages.

Facebook, on the other hand, was specifically designed as a place for people to share and communicate. The “sharing” element is its most prominent selling point, but there are still plenty of other features that allow businesses to effectively reach their audiences.

LinkedIn and Facebook both have the Groups feature that allows you to connect with other like-minded people, and they both have powerful Ad setups.

So with pretty similar features, what are the key differences between the two?

1. Numbers-wise, Facebook wins hands down.

Facebook has an astounding 2.38 billion active users across the world, which makes LinkedIn‘s user base of 630 million seem small in comparison. Plus, both audiences are made up of a diverse array of people, but LinkedIn tends to have a more professional clientele, or those with a deep interest in business.

Perhaps what’s most fascinating, though, isn’t how many users each platform has, but how much time these users spend on each respective site.

On Facebook, people spend around 35 minutes a day scrolling through their feeds and engaging with their friends, whereas LinkedIn users spend just 17 minutes a month using the site.

That being said, you could argue that when people log into LinkedIn, they’re actively looking to do or find something, rather than just aimlessly scrolling. This is important if you’re looking to use these platforms for more than just sharing your latest updates.

2. LinkedIn is better for lead generation.

Image Source

If we take a look at Demand Waves State of B2B Digital Marketing report, we can see that LinkedIn is the number one social network for lead generation for businesses — with Facebook fourth on the list behind Twitter and “Not Sure”.

Despite users not spending nearly as much time on LinkedIn as they do on Facebook, they’re more likely to be in a buying mindset.

Ultimately, both platforms are good for different things. While Facebook gives you access to ten times more prospects and provides a great place to generate brand awareness and engagement, LinkedIn beats Facebook when it comes to generating tangible leads.

Now that we’ve taken a general look at the two platforms and pitted them against each other, let’s take a more detailed look at some of the key features they have for businesses.

LinkedIn Groups vs. Facebook Groups

The Groups feature on both LinkedIn and Facebook give businesses the chance to mingle and connect with prospects and other like-minded businesses.

However, it’s critical to keep in mind people’s motives when they’re on the different sites. When users are engaging with others in LinkedIn Groups, there’s a high chance they’re in a work-related mindset in some capacity.

In Facebook Groups, on the other hand, people are more likely to share their personal opinions on everything — from lifestyle and food, to politics and hobbies.

So, when determining which Groups feature is best for you, think about the audience you’re targeting.

For instance, if you’re targeting general consumers with an interest in cooking because you’re selling the latest food blender, Facebook Groups is probably the way to go.

However, if you’re selling a high-priced service for top-tier management personnel, LinkedIn Groups’ filled with work-minded professionals might be a better bet.

Finally, let’s touch on the Ads aspect of both platforms.

In terms of variety, both platforms have reached pretty equal footing this year.

While Facebook has boasted a diverse range of ad types for years (we’re talking canvas, carousel, video, dynamic, and lead ads just to name a few), LinkedIn has just added a swathe of different ad types to its mix — including video, carousel, lead ads, and Sponsored InMail content.

Targeting-wise, if you think Facebook has the capability of reaching more people, you’re right. However, this doesn’t mean that LinkedIn doesn’t have powerful targeting capabilities — in fact, it very much does.

Both platforms are centered around user input and serve up ads and content relevant to the information their members give them.

In both Facebook and LinkedIn you can target people based on job title, household income, company, location, and age on both platforms, but you can dig a little deeper on Facebook, targeting users depending on their life milestones, behavior, and more personalized information.

If you’re targeting other businesses, it’s worth bearing in mind that the information on LinkedIn (like job titles and employers) tends to be kept up-to-date more than the information on Facebook, which means you might get more accurate hits if you’re specifically trying to reach people in a certain type of role or industry.

Lastly, it’s important to consider cost.

Usually, you get more for your money on Facebook. This is simply because there are millions more people on the platform who are on-site for far longer than those on LinkedIn. This means that Facebook can afford to serve cheaper ads, because there is less chance of one user seeing the same ad over and over again.

Who Wins? You Decide

While LinkedIn and Facebook do share some very obvious similarities, it’s clear their purpose, and the way people use each site, is quite different.

Which one you decide to use depends entirely on what industry you’re in, who you’re trying to reach, and your marketing goals.

Ultimately, it’s important to note that, ideally, you’ll use both channels to reach your audience wherever they want to be met. Perhaps you use LinkedIn for a targeted lead generation campaign, while you use Facebook to increase brand awareness and engage with your customers.

At the end of the day, both sites offer valuable opportunities to grow your company. However, you’ll hopefully use this guide to decide which site deserves more of your time and resources, and which can give your company the highest ROI.





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What Is Permission Marketing & How Does It Work?

What Is Permission Marketing & How Does It Work?


Have you ever signed up to receive email updates and special offers from a brand you love? Chances are, that answer is “a thousand times, yes.” Say you open your email to see a new promotion from Starbucks. Maybe for your birthday, you’re offered a free drink or a coupon for 20% off. That offer, and others like it, are examples of permission-based marketing.

Permission-Based Email Marketing

Permission-based marketing is a term coined by Seth Godin. It explains how businesses can market to a subscriber who gives their permission to be marketed to or “opts-in” to receiving offers and announcements from a brand.

In his book, Permission Marketing: Turning Strangers into Friends, and Friends into Customers, Godin explains that consumers should have the power to choose how they’re marketed to. When consumers agree to receive marketing emails, marketers are better able to understand and cater to their interests.

If you sign up for Starbucks Rewards, it’s likely because you love their drinks and think the incentive of earning points for each vanilla latte you buy is a pretty good deal.

You might also enter your email address to access an analytics report and check a box giving the company permission to send you other relevant content offers. These instances involve the customer providing information in exchange for something of interest — the basis of permission marketing. In short, it’s a way to niche market to customers on their terms.

There are two types of permission marketing: express and implied.

  • Express-permission marketing – The consumer provides their email to receive marketing messages. For example, they might sign up for a newsletter. Express marketing is common when creating new business relationships.
  • Implied-permission marketing – The business has an existing relationship with the consumer. This might include someone who’s a current customer or frequent website visitor.

Whichever form of email marketing is being used, both hand the reins to the customer, giving them control over when the relationship starts and stops.

Permission-based marketing is a way for businesses to offer incentives that align with customer interest.

Receiving permission to market to your recipients is a way to build trust, value, and brand loyalty with consumers. Sending non-permission based offers can result in consumer frustration, privacy violations, and lost business.

Is Permission Marketing Worth It?

By now, you’ve likely figured out that permission marketing is a cost-effective marketing method. That’s not the only upside. Other pros include maintaining strong client relationships, reputation building, and boosting leads.

By investing time into what customers want to see, customers will become loyal to your brand. Businesses also build a positive reputation by delivering high-quality email marketing to audiences.

Further, permission-based marketing generates new leads. When someone subscribes to your content, they’re subscribing to learn more about the services your business offers.

But, not everything is coming up permission-based marketing roses. Permission marketing does have its downsides. For example, because these permission marketing emails are often automated, businesses must be wary of sending too many. A company that emails their customers about every new deal, sale, or feature launch can overload an inbox and degrade customer interest.

The same can be true of sending too few emails. A lead can forget your business exists as quickly as they discovered you. Balancing content volume and cadence is key.

So, what kind of content is best when using permission-based marketing? Here are a few to get the ball rolling:

  • Promotions – Send subscribers a notification during a promotional event that’s exclusive to their interests.
  • Membership perks – Keep subscribers invested by sharing member-only offers.
  • Newsletters – Keep subscribers informed about the latest updates or changes to your product in a newsletter.

Similarly, sending consumers content unrelated to what they signed up for can lead them to opt out. If a customer signs up for a weekly newsletter about Instagram marketing, they’re probably not interested in a new sales product release announcement.

Permission Marketing Examples

Email marketing comes in many different forms. Here are a few rules of thumb to build solid permission marketing emails:

  • Make sure the customer grants permission
  • State clearly that the consumer’s information is private
  • Provide an easy-to-locate unsubscribe option in the footer of emails.
  • Choose content that incentives the subscriber to continue coming back for more.
  • Add personality — these emails are a chance for a business to let their hair down and be more laid back with their subscribers.

These example emails are succinct with their content, use engaging graphics, and include a call-to-action for the consumer.

Image source: Later

I am a subscriber to emails for ”Later,” an Instagram scheduler. I receive updates on new Instagram features and fun posting tricks. I like that each of Later’s email subject lines ends with a relevant emoji and that the content displays clear, interesting call-to-action buttons.

Even for a B2B platform, Later finds a way to add their distinct voice into their weekly newsletters. Each one is signed from the platform’s CEO, Taylor, so it always feels personalized. For more B2B marketing examples, click here.

good example of permission-based marketing

Image source: Forever 21

Forever 21’s email game is strong. I became a subscriber so that I would be notified about sales. What I get are enjoyable weekly emails with pop-culturally relevant subject lines.

Notice how the sale is only for those who order online? Not only is there one sale going on in the call-to-action, but the two other promotions at the top of the email give me a choice to personalize my shopping experience.

Since permission marketing is usually an automated method of marketing, there are tools out there to help with creation and scheduling.

When choosing an email marketing service, keep a few things in mind:

  1. Make sure there is a clear and obvious way for customers to sign up for and manage their subscription.
  2. Make sure that your automation service fits in with your current marketing strategy. HubSpot offers a free email tool, along with the free HubSpot CRM, which allows you to create, personalize, and automate your emails. HubSpot’s tool also makes sure automation marketing content is complicit with CAN-SPAM, a law that regulates email marketing.

Permission-based marketing is essential to a business that wants to get more out of their marketing efforts and generate new leads. You can customize your marketing messages and customers can personalize the offers most relative to them. For a more in-depth look at how to crack into email marketing, check out this ultimate guide.





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The Ultimate List of Instagram Influencers in Every Industry (135 and Counting!)

The Ultimate List of Instagram Influencers in Every Industry (135 and Counting!)


In 2017, 92% of marketers who used influencer marketing found it to be effective.

Influencer marketing has grown steadily in popularity over the past few years, and for good reason — oftentimes, customers trust influencers over celebrities when choosing which products to buy, or which brands to endorse.

In fact, marketers have seen such success from influencer marketing that almost 40% of them plan to increase their influencer budget in 2018 and beyond.To compete on one of the most popular social media platforms, it’s critical you consider implementing an influencer marketing campaign. But if you’ve never used an influencer before, the task can seem daunting — who’s truly the best advocate for your brand?

Here, we’ve cultivated a list of the best Instagram influencers in every industry — simply scroll to your industry, and take a look at the top influencers that could help you take your business to the next level. We’ve also included links to each of their Instagram accounts, so you can check out their pages and begin DM-ing them, immediately.

Top Food Influencers on Instagram

  1. Jamie Oliver (6.7 million followers)
  2. Brad Lau (620k followers)
  3. Megan Gilmore (70.9k followers)
  4. Ashrod (102k followers)
  5. David Chang (1 million followers)
  6. Ida Frosk (267k followers)
  7. Lindsey Silverman Love (105k followers)
  8. Nick N. (70.3k followers)
  9. Molly Tavoletti (60.4k followers)
  10. Russ Crandall (45.8k followers)
  11. Dennis the Prescott (462k followers)
  12. Gabriel Cabrera (79.1k followers)
  13. Thalia Ho (70.7k followers)
  14. Molly Yeh (315k followers)
  15. C.R Tan (58k followers)
  16. Ela Vegan (822k followers)
  17. Nicole Cogan (176k followers)
  18. Minimalist Baker (1.6 million followers)
  19. Yumna Jawad (252k followers)

Top Travel Influencers on Instagram

  1. Annette White (99.2k followers)
  2. Matthew Karsten (153k followers)
  3. The Points Guy (115k followers)
  4. The Blonde Abroad (547k followers)
  5. Eric Stoen (82.3k followers)
  6. Kate McCulley (100k followers)
  7. The Planet D (223k followers)
  8. Andrew Evans (63.9k followers)
  9. Jack Morris (2.8 million followers)
  10. Lauren Bullen (2 million followers)
  11. The Bucket List Family (1.5 million followers)
  12. Fat Girls Traveling (26.5k followers)
  13. Murad Osmann (4.1 million followers)
  14. Tara Milk Tea (1.3 million followers)

Top Fashion & Style Influencers on Instagram

  1. Alexa Chung (3.1 million followers)
  2. Julia Hengel (1.2 million followers)
  3. Oscar Cobo (162k followers)
  4. Chiara Ferragni (15.3 million followers)
  5. Jenn Im (1.7 million followers)
  6. Ada Oguntodu (69.4k followers)
  7. Emma Hill (444k followers)
  8. Gregory DelliCarpini Jr. (167k followers)
  9. Nicolette Mason (172k followers)
  10. Majawyh (311k followers)
  11. Garance Doré (741k followers)
  12. Ines de la Fressange (277k followers)
  13. Madelynn Furlong (151k followers)
  14. Giovanna Engelbert (925k followers)
  15. Mariano Di Vaio (6.1 million followers)
  16. Aimee Song (5.3 million followers)
  17. Danielle Bernstein (2.1 million followers)
  18. Gabi Gregg (713k followers)

Top Photography Influencers on Instagram

  1. Benjamin Lowy (229k followers)
  2. Murad Osmann (4.3 million followers)
  3. Michael Yamashita (1.4 million followers)
  4. Stacy Kranitz (98.7k followers)
  5. Jimmy Chin (1.9 million followers)
  6. Gueorgui Pinkhassov (94.2k followers)
  7. Dustin Giallanza (5,097 followers)
  8. Lindsey Childs (7,483 followers)
  9. Edith W. Young (16k followers)
  10. Alyssa Rose (8,071 followers)
  11. Donjay (113k followers)
  12. Jeff Rose (77.6k followers)
  13. Pei Ketron (771k followers)
  14. Paul Nicklen (5.6 million followers)
  15. Jack Harries (1.5 million followers)
  16. İlhan Eroğlu (656k followers)

Top Lifestyle Influencers on Instagram

  1. Jannid Olsson Delér (1.4 million followers)
  2. Oliver Proudlock (734k followers)
  3. Brunch Boys (463k followers)
  4. Jay Caesar (350k followers)
  5. Jessie Chanes (259k followers)
  6. Laura Noltemeyer (199k followers)
  7. Adorian Deck (17.7k followers)
  8. Hind Deer (609k followers)
  9. Gloria Morales (102k followers)
  10. Kennedy Cymone (782k followers)
  11. Sydney Leroux Dwyer (1 million followers)
  12. Joanna Stevens Gaines (11.2 million followers)
  13. Lilly Singh (8.9 million followers)
  14. Rosanna Pansino (4.4 million followers)

Top Design Influencers on Instagram

  1. Marie Kondo (668k followers)
  2. Ashley Stark Kenner (520k followers)
  3. Casa Chicks (266k followers)
  4. Paulina Jamborowicz (192k followers)
  5. Kasia Będzińska (212k followers)
  6. Jenni Kayne (127k followers)
  7. Will Taylor (249k followers)
  8. Studio McGee (780k followers)
  9. Mandi Gubler (106k followers)
  10. Natalie Myers (18.9k followers)
  11. Grace Bonney (932k followers)
  12. Saudah Saleem (13.7k followers)
  13. Niña Williams (107k followers)

Top Beauty Influencers on Instagram

  1. Michelle Phan (2 million followers)
  2. Shaaanxo (1.5 million followers)
  3. Jeffree Star (8.8 million followers)
  4. Kandee Johnson (1.8 million followers)
  5. Manny Gutierrez (4.8 million followers)
  6. Naomi Giannopoulos (7.3 million followers)
  7. Samantha Ravndahl (2.2 million followers)
  8. Huda Kattan (28.2 million followers)
  9. Wayne Goss (649k followers)
  10. Zoe Sugg (10.4 million followers)
  11. James Charles (15.8 million followers)
  12. Shayla Mitchell (2.8 million followers)

Top Sport & Fitness Influencers on Instagram

  1. Massy Arias (2.5 million followers)
  2. Eddie Hall (866k followers)
  3. Ty Haney (38.8k followers)
  4. Hannah Bronfman (478k followers)
  5. Kenneth Gallarzo (418k followers)
  6. Elisabeth Akinwale (111k followers)
  7. Laura Large (69.4k followers)
  8. Kemo Marriott (10.6k followers)
  9. Akin Akman (46.6k followers)
  10. Sjana Elise Earp (1.4 million followers)
  11. Cassey Ho (1.5 million followers)
  12. Kayla Itsines (11.7 million followers)
  13. Jen Selter (12.8 million followers)
  14. Simeon Panda (5.4 million followers)

1. Jamie Oliver

Jamie Oliver, a world renowned chef and restaurateur, is Instagram famous for his approachable and delicious-looking cuisine. His page reflects a mix of food pictures, recipes, and photos of his family and personal life. His love of beautiful food and teaching others to cook is clearly evident, which must be one of the many reasons why he has nearly eight million followers.

2. David Chang 

Celebrity chef David Chang is best known for his world-famous restaurants and big personality. Chang was a judge on Top Chef and created his own Netflix show called Ugly Delicious, both of which elevated his popularity and likely led to his huge followship on Instagram. Most of his feed is filled with food videos that will make you drool.

3. Jack Morris and Lauren Bullen

Travel bloggers Jack Morris (@doyoutravel) and Lauren Bullen (@gypsea_lust)
have dream jobs — the couple travels to some of the most beautiful places around the world and documents their trips on Instagram. They have developed a unique and recognizable Instagram aesthetic that their combined 4.8 million Instagram followers love, using the same few filters and posting the most striking travel destinations.

4. The Bucket List Family

The Gee family, better known as the Bucket List Family, travel around the world with their three kids and post videos and images of their trips to YouTube and Instagram. They are constantly sharing pictures and stories of their adventures in exotic places. This nomad lifestyle is enjoyed by their 1.8 million followers.

5. Chiara Ferragni

Chiara Ferragni is an Italian fashion influencer who started her blog The Blonde Salad to share tips, photos, and clothing lines. Ferragni has been recognized as one of the most influential people of her generation, listed on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 and the Bloglovin’ Award Blogger of the Year.

6. Alexa Chung

Model and fashion designer Alexa Chung is Instagram famous for her elegant yet charming style and photos. After her modeling career, she collaborated with many brands like Mulberry and Madewell to create her own collection, making a name for herself in the fashion world. Today, she shares artistic yet fun photos with her 3.4 million Instagram followers.

7. Murad Osmann

Starting in 2011, a Instagram phenomenon called “Follow Me” took over the social platform: all the images depicted someone holding the photographer’s hand, pulling them towards some incredible vista. This began with Murad Osmann — a Russian photographer with four4 million followers — who took photos of his girlfriend pulling him to a destination that eventually went viral.

8. Jimmy Chin

Jimmy Chin is an award-winning professional photographer who captures high-intensity shots of climbing expeditions and natural panoramas. He has won multiple awards for his work, and he is recognized by his 2.4 million Instagram followers for his talent.

9. Jannid Olsson Delér

Jannid Olsson Delér is a lifestyle and fashion blogger that gathered a huge social media following for her photos of outfits, vacations, and her overall aspirational life. Her 1.3 million followers look to her for travel and fashion inspirations.

10. Grace Bonney

Design*Sponge is a design blog authored by Grace Bonney, an influencer recognized by the New York Times, Forbes, and other major publications for her impact on the creative community. Her Instagram posts reflect her elegant yet approachable creative advice, and nearly a million users follow her account for her bright and charismatic feed.

11. Huda Kattan

Huda Kattan took the beauty world by storm — her Instagram began with makeup tutorials and reviews and turned into a cosmetics empire. Huda now has 1.3 million Instagram followers and a company valued at $1.2 billion. Her homepage is filled with makeup videos and snaps of her luxury lifestyle.

12. Zoe Sugg

Zoe Sugg runs a fashion, beauty, and lifestyle blog and has nearly 10 million followers on Instagram. She also has an incredibly successful YouTube channel, and has written best-selling books on the experience of viral bloggers. Her feed consists mostly of food, her pug, selfies, and trendy outfits.

13. Jeffree Star

Jeffree Star is one of the most widely recognized makeup celebrities in the world — in addition to his own cosmetic line, he reviews the latest and greatest in makeup on his YouTube channel. He has risen to celebrity status for his entertaining content and commentary, and his Instagram is full of creative makeup applications for his 13.6 million followers.

14. Sjana Elise Earp

Sjana Elise Earp is  a lifestyle influencer who keeps her Instagram feed full of beautiful photos of her travels. She actively promotes yoga and healthy living to her 1.6 million followers, becoming an advocate for an exercise program called SWEAT.

15. Massy Arias

Personal trainer Massy Arias is known for her fitness videos and healthy lifestyle. Her feed aims to inspire her 2.6 million followers to keep training and never give up on their health. Arias has capitalized on fitness trends on Instagram and proven to both herself and her followers that exercise can improve all areas of your life. 

 





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