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4 Writing Resources for Bloggers

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Medium

Medium is a hub for writers. The platform was built to unite people sharing stories, viewpoints and original ideas all within a clean reading experience. You can customize your feed to showcase your favorite topics, writers, and publications. All the content that matters to you will be right at your fingertips on the Medium platform. Medium also serves as a content creation tool where users can publish their own stories. In addition, paid members receive access to exclusive content from their favorite publications such as Fast Company, The Guardian, New York Times, etc. 

Ghost

Ghost is a seamless authoring experience. With Ghost, you’ll be able to assign multiples roles for authors, editors and administrators within your own publishing platform. The program allows you to invite your whole team to collaborate, with dedicated public user profiles for everyone. You can also build almost any type of category, section, format or flow using tags as well as schedule posts in advance. Ghost is also customizable, allowing you to add a logo and create navigation menus. Ghost can power blogs, magazine and journalists from Zappos to Sky News.

Draft

Draft is a great resource for writers who make multiple edits and changes throughout the writing process. With Draft, you can edit documents and any changes that you make will automatically sync to the cloud or the platform that you imported the content from, such as Evernote, Google Docs, and iCloud Notes. Draft documents can easily be published to Wordpress, Tumblr, Ghost, Svbtle, Blogger, Twitter, LinkedIn, Basecamp and even Mailchimp.

Writefull

Writefull will help to make you a better writer by giving feedback and checking your text against databases of the correct language. The app or Chrome extension uses a large language database to search for the frequency of chunks of text from academic papers and reports, books and web pages. The screenshot above shows an example of when Writefull can help a writer choose the most appropriate phrase depending on the context of the particular sentence. Writefull can also define certain words or phrases from dictionary databases.

By adding these 4 resources to your writing repertoire, you’ll be able to produce higher quality content in less time and also reach readers who are interested in your writing.

6 Inspiring Brands on Social Media

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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 2.27.18 PM

Finding your company's place in the realm of social media can sometimes seem impossible. With technology advancing within the time it takes to blink your eye, the key to staying up with the cool trends is to be inspired by the other successful brands trying new things and helping fun tidbits you find to create something unique to your brand! This week we decided it would be a cool to show you a few different brands to keep an eye on when that moment comes and you need a little inspirational push.

1) LOFT

Loft uses creative ways of using stop motion animation when advertising their adorable and affordable clothing. We've had our eye on their social media when we need inspiration for stop motion animation. There are plenty go free apps you can use to create these stop motion videos and all you'll need is your product, props, and decent lighting to make it happen. We use Stop Motion available in the Apple app store to make our stop motion videos.

loft 2
loft 2

2) WENDY'S

We have to be honest when I say we're normally McDonald's people, but on social media Wendy's has stolen our hearts with their witty humor. They've recently created and successfully executed a campaign called #AskEileen that has taken the Twitter world by storm. The backstory behind #AskEileen consists of a grandson asking Wendy's if his grandmother, being a die hard lover of Wendy's, could take over the Wendy's Twitter account for her 99th birthday. When Wendy's said Yes to this comical endeavor, it went viral and #AskEileen became a slogan that Wendy's lovers won't forget! The whole day of 1/10 was documented on Twitter via Periscope and photos of Eileen's birthday surrounded around Wendy's. With this long winded story in mind, think outside the box when coming up with campaigns to promote your business. This doesn't have to mean executing a  Twitter takeover from a 99 year old woman, but it could be something different that would encourage other followers to follow along.  (To read more about #AskEileen, click HERE)

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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 9.57.46 AM

3) CHARMIN

Although their slogan is Charmin Ultra, Less is More  (We all know you sang that in your head), their Twitter account has more laughs and ironic humor than most. Charming is sure to use relevant topics in the news to promote their business in a humorous way. By using puns and relevant material related to toilet paper, they incorporate the trending hashtags into their daily content. Create a fun graphic or comical Twitter poll to get users involved with your brand during a time when everyone has an opinion.

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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 10.19.22 AM
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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 10.19.30 AM

4) DOVE

If there's one brand that knows how to effectively tap into their audience, it's Dove. Although they sell products to men AND women, they're conscious to use a feminine voice when delivering their message via social media. Dove is aware that the majority of their consumer base is women; therefore, their social media presence is heavily geared towards women. Take a tip from Dove's rule book and get to know your audience. Post with them in mind rather than posting to just acquire likes.

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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 10.46.19 AM

5) CHOBANI

You know your brand more than anyone else does. Think outside the box on how consumers view and use your brand. This is what Chobani did by posting different ways to use their yogurt products beyond just eating it with a spoon and granola. This approach inspires their consumers to try their product in a new way. (We even tried greek yogurt on chili the other night... and it was delicious). Don't miss out on the opportunity to reinvent your brand on social media by showing it in a new way that your followers may not be used to.

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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 11.12.09 AM
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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 11.12.25 AM

6) NIKELAB

If you love the clean look that is so popular right now on social media, we suggest being inspired by the NikeLab account on Instagram. They deliver their branding in a clean way while still being bada**. Perhaps you could attempt to create your own version of this look by using color blocking with your brand colors and specific product placement or even using only black and white products.

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Screen Shot 2016-01-27 at 11.28.38 AM

We hope that this blogpost has inspired you to innovate your social media accounts using unique content! Share your inspiration with us by tagging us at @SocialApeMKTG on Twitter!

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5 Pinterest Tips to Optimize your Marketing Efforts

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Screen Shot 2016-01-06 at 11.07.57 AM

There are many tricks of the trade when it comes to representing your brand well on Pinterest. With this in mind, we've compiled a list of the top five that we feel to be the most important when using Pinterest for your business. Enjoy!

1) Make sure your Pinterest name and profile picture are relevant to your brand

  • This is highly important to ensure that viewers will know that the Pinterest account and board are specifically related to your company or personal brand.
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Screen Shot 2015-12-29 at 2.43.30 PM

2) Know the right times to pin.

  • As most of us know, browsing Pinterest is usually an evening activity for most. With that said, if you have a scheduling tool to post pins from (We use Buffer), be sure to schedule them after work hours for higher reach!

3) Cross-advertise on other platforms.

  • Sometimes it’s hard to get your name and brand out there on Pinterest, but an easy way to advertise for free is to tweet and post on your company’s Facebook about your Pinterest account. This way you get your name out there and as your friends/followers on Twitter and Facebook pin from your boards, it’ll cause a chain reaction for their Pinterest followers to see your material.
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Screen Shot 2016-01-06 at 10.27.07 AM

4) Be strategic with your boards.

  • When choosing what categories you want for your company’s boards, be strategic! If you write blog posts for the company, make a board for that. If you have seasonal merchandise, then make a whole board around it. It’s smart to categorize your boards as specifically as you can in order to better advertise those pins within the board!
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Screen Shot 2015-12-29 at 2.46.13 PM

5) Keep up with your Pinterest Analytics.

  • This is a great way to keep track of what’s working and what isn’t. Take time out once a month to see which pins are doing well and which ones you could do without. This will help you continue to improve your content that you put out. We love the All-time option to see what our best pins were and how we can make more pins like those specific pieces of content!
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Screen Shot 2015-12-29 at 2.41.56 PM

We hope you enjoy these tips for optimizing your Pinterest marketing. Know of any other great Pinterest tips? Tweet us at @SocialApeMktg!

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The 411 on GIFs

HORIZONS
HORIZONS
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giphy

With social media networks like Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr on the rise, it should be no surprise that image-based social media posts are all the rage right now. According to this report, between 65-85% of people say they are visual learners and psychologically consumers love imagery and seeing visually appealing content. But it's not just images that are taking over social media; it's GIFs (pronounced Jif - like the peanut butter; although there is some debate, the creator of GIFs has spoken). GIFs are short, moving images that are most likely to put a smile on your face.  Now that you know what a GIF is, it's time to learn how to use them to your advantage. First, you will need to find a suitable GIF for the type of content you're going to pair it with. I should warn you, though, picking out a GIF is the hardest part of this procedure as there is an endless amount of relevant and downright laughable GIFs to chose from. Check out websites like Giphy.com to find a pre-made GIF or if you want to make your own, check out Giffffr.com, imgflip.com , or makeagif.com.

If you are experienced in Adobe Photoshop, here is a tutorial on how to make your own using Photoshop. We tested out some of the make-your-own GIF sites and found them to be fairly straight forward. For example, on makeagif.com, you just copy and paste the URL from a Youtube video, pick the start and end time from the video for your GIF, and click create!

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giphy

After you have picked or created the GIF of your dreams, it's time to upload it. Simply download (or right click and save) the GIF to your computer and upload it as an image, make sure it's saved with ".gif" as the extension. This is the best way to use a GIF when emailing, tweeting or blogging content. When posting a GIF to Facebook, you'll need to post the full URL ending in ".gif" to share it. Unfortunately, only personal Facebook pages (not brands' pages) can upload a GIF so that it plays without opening another window. Hopefully, Facebook will soon allow brand pages to follow suit. Also, Giphy.com has recently developed a plug-in for Gmail so that you can email a GIF at the click of a button, rather than saving a GIF and uploading it as an image. More plug-ins for Facebook Messenger and GroupMe are in the works, as well.

Now that you know more about GIFs, it's time for you to up your content game! Here's a great article on how 5 major brands are using GIFs to make the most of their marketing content.

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giphy

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