Instagram is a powerful channel of digital promotion. It is used by over a billion people worldwide, which means your potential exposure is massive. However, brands should be careful to tell their stories in an inspiring and creative way. Over the past few years, there has been no shortage of humiliating blunders, goofs, and gaffes.
Today, launching a campaign is easier than ever. Thanks to cross-platform systems like https://www.aitarget.com, you can engage multiple networks at the same time, and manage campaigns simultaneously. However, even the most advanced tech solutions cannot prevent some mistakes. Alas, marketers are not always as wise as they should be.
1. Do Not Make Promises You Cannot Keep
Sunny Co. Clothing wanted to attract attention to its Baywatch-themed swimsuit called the Pamela, so it posted a promotional picture with a generous promise. Any user who reposted and tagged it within 24 hours was entitled to a free swimsuit worth $65. You can guess what happened next.
Of course, the post went viral, gaining over 3,000 reposts within the first few hours. The company’s inbox was inundated with angry messages. It was impossible to meet the demand, so the brand had to curtail their promotion citing “the viral volume of participants”. Of course, the brand image took a hit.
2. Never Insult Your Followers
Stefano Gabbana is notorious for his straightforward comments. In 2017, the world saw one of his most aggressive posts ever. The co-founder posted a photo of the brand’s fall 2017 sneakers with the exclamation “I’m thin & gorgeous!” on them. This caused a stir, as users detected fat-shaming in the message.
However, the celebrity did not apologize. Moreover, he criticized those who dared to accuse him in the comments with questions like “darling you prefer to be fat and full of cholesterol?” Stefano Gabbana called the commenters “fat”, “stupid”, and “idiots”. Insulting loyal customers is a weird strategy, and it surely had a negative impact on the brand.
3. Be Selective with Influencer Marketing
On the one hand, engaging a famous influencer gives instant exposure. Millions of subscribers can see a product or service, while personal recommendations build trust. However, brands should be extremely careful when they choose their influencers. The example of Little Mix, a UK pop group selling branded perfume, is telling.
The post promoting the product included comments from the editor. It is like having your ex-lover repost your private messages for the whole world to see! The caption started with “how’s this copy jade”, so the comment following it (excitement at being featured on a taxi) was not perceived as genuine.
4. Know Your Audience
Vera Bradley designs purses and handbags. When she launched her campaign called “Why It’s Good to Be a Girl”, she intended to celebrate women, but the posts backfired. The reason was that the campaign seemed to convey values that were relevant in the 1950s. Modern users did not appreciate the idea of “needing 5 shades of lipstick” or the feeling “when a gentleman offers you his seat.” The reactions ranged from sarcasm to irritation.
5. Be Careful with Hashtags
Before posting any hashtags, check them to make sure they do not lead users astray. For example, this is what happened with Warburtons, a British baking company, when it was running a Christmas contest. By accident, the post included a hashtag previously used by people with a penchant for dressing up in cartoon animal costumes
At first glance, the #CrumpetCreations hashtag looked perfectly relevant and innocuous — until you clicked on it to see other posts. As it turned out, the brand’s crumpets were not the only thing associated with the word combination. Those who wanted to see user-submitted content were introduced to the weird world of furries.
The Bottom Line
As you see, advertising on social media has its intricacies. Every step must be carefully calculated to avoid a backlash. Do not make promises you cannot keep, and study your target audience thoroughly to make sure your posts resonate with their values.
Author: I’m Jaylin: Guest post service planner of Leelija and full time blogger. Favorite things include my camera, traveling, caring my fitness, food and my fashion. Email id: [email protected]