Business! Do not Try and Run before you can walk

Please note this content may contain a lot of metaphors. 

If you try and run before you can walk, You will only end up back on the floor.

Through my experience working with various startup clients, I have come to realise a lot of business’ tend to gain reception from their target audiences before they have anything worth buying into. 

A lot of business’ mistaken throwing money at campaigns and boosting social media posts to shove their product or service down a customer’s throat is a means to a successful outcome. 

Here are some things to consider before expecting results!

  • Does anybody actually know who you are?
  • Yes you have a great product/service but who can vouch for you?
  • Do you have a strong brand and does you visual identity represent you?
  • Why should I, a consumer pick you over your competition?

Those are some key questions a startup should ask themselves. 

Does anybody actually know who you are?

A lot of brands/businesses assume the first thing to do is to get behind social media and exploit their business or service to followers they have not built up yet and assume hashtags will do the work for them. 

This is not entirely the case. Put it this way, consider that we are dealing with real humans with real emotions and preferences, just because you #brandedproduct under your post does not mean people following this hashtag will automatically interact with you post. 

Think of it like a job interview, yes they want to know what you can do for them but initially they want to know a bit about you, what makes you laugh, what your interests are, what makes you tick and they also consider your visual appearance. 

On that note, here are some points to take on board when it comes to people getting to know through social media.

  • Use you social platform to influence people. E.g create meaningful posts that your targeted audience might learn from.
  • Post interesting things that might evoke your audience to follow you to get more from you.
  • Interact with like minded brands especially ones with larger following. E.g repost their content and tag them in, most of the time they will repost that post on their story and although it’s all about them, guess what your name is popping up on their story being viewed by thousands.
  • Comment on other posts, again especially ones with lots of interaction. Don’t just like it or leave a generic comment, but try to leave a comment that makes people want to like your comment and in turn maybe even check you out and follow you.
  • Add highlights to your Instagram. Interesting highlights always draw attention to your profile people like to see what you get up to, or what fun facts you might post every now and then.

Those are a few things you might consider for social media presence. Try and realise that no one wants a product or service they don’t know shoved in their face so i always say post 80% something interesting and 10% call to action. 

By that i mean if you are a healthy juice brand post interesting facts about a particular ingredient explaining the benefits in the caption then at the bottom of your caption your 10% call to action e.g “BTW here’s a ten percent off coupon for all our juices”. 

You have got the attention of the consumer with an interesting post something they want to read and learn; incase they didn’t know, then at the end you have related it to your product with a small call to action text.

Yes you have great products or services but who can vouch for you?

Our consumer journey is based on trust. Do we trust that you are going to deliver the service you say you are delivering? do we trust that we will receive our product? Do we trust that you are not a scam?

A customers typical journey starts with Awareness, then consideration before purchase.

Ok, so a consumer is aware of your company now, and they have taken an interest in your product or service. The next step for a consumer is consideration and research, a potential customer most definitely do their research to see who else has used your product or service, they will look out for any reviews to make up their mind whether they can trust your company is what it says on the tin. 

Then once they are happy with what they see them they may purchase. Although this doesn’t apply to all services or business depending on the field, this is the general customer mentality. So bottom line is you need to get those reviews in, give people incentive to leave reviews in return for a reward, that way it will help other consumers make a decision to become your customer and the cycle continues.

Do you have a strong brand ?

Branding Design is everything when it comes to a consumer’s impression of your company.A powerful brand can play a big part in your business’s growth. 

A strong brand starts with great visual aesthetics like; a great logo design, a seamless website and user friendly website that looks great; a well branded product and consistent brand guidelines, however A successful brand is more than just visuals your brand identity will need to consist of more than graphic design. Effective branding is about your tone of voice; 

  • How do you address your audience, in the way you write? 
  • What are your company Values? 
  • Do you need a mission Statement?

All these factors tie in hand in hand with your brand strategy and the perception of your business. When creating a brand you are creating a personality. 

Most certainly when you see someone dressed a certain way you can instantly assume their personality, and wouldn’t  it just look odd if their personality did not match with their look. It’s the same as a company, good brand management is consistency. 

The way you talk to your audience has to tally up with your visual identity as well as your values. Good brands also have a good mission statement and helps consumers understand what impact you are trying to have, and what is your brand promise e.g what can your customers expect from your product or service.

Check out coca cola for example, their mission statement is; “to refresh the world in mind, body and spirit, to inspire moments of optimism and happiness through our brands and actions, to create value and make a difference.” A good read to help with identifying mission statements is What Great Brands Do By Denise Lee Yohn.

Why should I, a consumer pick you over your competition?

This one is simple really, and it’s just about how you set yourself apart from your competitors. I once watched a stream of a business guru talking about competitors and he made a valid point. 

If you are driving past a field of black and white cows, and you happen to see a purple cow, which cow would grab your attention? How do we make ourselves the purple cow? Find your niche, do a swot analysis and figure out what can make you slightly different from your competition.

Once you have got your business walking in the direction then you can think about running. Considering these factors from the beginning will save you a lot of money and time. 

You won’t spend money on advertising without getting expected results and you won’t waste time wondering why your business is not picking up the way you thought it might have. Parading yourself in front of a large audience doesn’t mean they will notice you, what makes you noticeable is, what you look like (visual/brand identity), your mannerisms, (tone of voice), what others say about you (reviews), and what makes you different (be the purple cow!)

That being said, as a brand agency we want to help you achieve the most out of your strategy. Get in contact with use and let’s see how Jazzy Dream Studio can help you give your company a voice.

How to respond to negative reviews

Believe it or not, the same premise applies to negative review response as it does to positive reviews. How you respond to a negative review impacts not only the reviewer but all the sets of eyes that come afterward. Seeing a business handle a particularly challenging review online suggests that management is proud of their business and willing to go the extra mile to maintain their reputation!

Make potential clients see the light with these four steps: apologies, promote, get offline, keep it simple.

How to respond to negative reviews

  1. Apologize and sympathize

    The first step towards fixing a problem is acknowledging that one occurred. Regardless of what happened, a simple apology and sympathy for your customer’s experience go a long way.

  2. Promote

    So the famous crab cakes weren’t up to par the day this particular customer visited. If they’re what you are known for, why not reiterate that? “Our crab cakes are usually a hit, we’re sorry to hear that they weren’t up to par when you visited!”

  3. Move the conversation offline

    Don’t open a can of worms. Keep the lid on tight by offering the reviewer the chance to reach out via phone, email or both.

  4. Keep it simple

    Avoid specifics and don’t ask questions. Those conversations are much better served in a space away from the prying public.

One last pro tip: leave your business name, location, and category out of this. You don’t want your negative reviews showing up in search!

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5 Reasons You Need Instagram for Your Business

Instagram has entered the territory of “must” rather than “nice-to-have” when it comes to social marketing for businesses. There are a few key reasons why every business should have an Instagram account, and why you’re going to be pretty left out if you don’t get on this social platform.

1. Skyrocket Your Engagement

The data shows that Instagram is the #1 platform for getting post engagement.

That means that if you want to establish a relationship with your client base (which you do), then you’re going to need that post engagement that only Instagram can provide.

But let’s back it up for a second…

It’s an interesting time to be involved in social media marketing… Facebook is facing major allegations, and as a result—people are doing crazy things like starting movements to delete their Facebook accounts… (For my sake, and the sake of your distant relatives, please do not delete your facebook). As much as internet trolls might have you think that it’s the social media Armageddon, I assure you that life will go on.

It might be looking a little overcast in the internet landscape, but before we pack our bags —there’s still some hope. Facebook’s more charismatic and adopted little brother (Instagram) still has users entranced with its purity and boasts a pristine opportunity for brands who are ready to stir up the marketing pot.

Now, Instagram is the #1 platform for post engagement because its focus on visual content creates a very unique space for brands to interact with others—and if you’re a skeptic, the numbers don’t lie. According to a study conducted by Forrester, Facebook and Twitter organic post engagement levels are currently less than 0.1%. In comparison, the millennial-centric Instagram boasts regular engagement at 4% for brands. (That’s 40x better btw).

instagram stats

2. Grow Your Following with Ease

80 percent of Instagram accounts already follow a business on Instagram, and 65% of top-performing posts feature products. The translation here is obvious, Instagrammers want to see branded content, and they want to connect with brands.

Add the engagement levels for brands (4%) that we just saw and we have the optimal landscape for growing your branded following on this platform.

3. Generate Leads

Instagram is a tool for lead generation.

We know that social media strongly influences purchase decisions, even if that is at the subconscious level of the consumer decision-making process.

It’s 2018, and our favorite lead generation tool (Facebook) is making algorithm changes that are making it harder for brands to get heard. With engagement rates already resting around the 0.1% mark, it just might be the ideal time to expand your reach to include some Instagram marketing.

With Instagram, 60% of users have first heard of a product or service through the platform, and over 120 million Instagram users visited a website, got directions, or called/emailed/direct messaged a business as a result of their engagement with the platform (sproutsocial). That means that 120 million Instagrammers have been lead to a business through the platform.

You can easily use Instagram to generate new business and sales with strategic content and links in your bio, as well as reach new targeted and engaged audiences through paid ad campaigns through the Facebook ad platform.

4. Stay On Top of “Instagram Reviews”

A little-known fact is that when an Instagram user posts something on Instagram and uses a location tag, this tag isn’t owned or regulated by the business that owns the physical location. All location tags on Instagram, or “Instagram Geotags”,” are tied to a separate public account that Instagram will store posts under.

Instagram Reviews

For businesses, this is a blessing and a curse.

Best Case Scenario:

Say you own a local restaurant and you have numerous dedicated and consistent customers who love to post at your restaurant and have nothing but glowing words to accompany beautiful pictures of your space. When others look at your location on Instagram, this is what they see, and they are that much more likely to convert and become loyal customers as well.

Worst Case Scenario:

You own the same local restaurant, but one dissatisfied customer took it upon themselves to post a picture of your front door exclaiming their disgust with the service that they received. This post has lingered on the web and likely dissuaded other customers from posting to the location, and has resulted in the loss of unknown amounts of revenue through prospects who steered away from your business as a result.

Although you have no control over the things that users might be saying about your brand (much like standard reviews), you can still help mitigate some possible damages by having a branded Instagram account and monitoring the posts on your location. Much like negative reviews left on other review platforms, by responding to negative Instagram posts, you are much more likely to prevent harm to your reputation.

5. Don’t Get Left Behind

As of 2017, nearly 71% of businesses in the United States were already using Instagram. The release of Instagram business profiles and the ability to to run ads/analytics with ease have been large factors in driving the Instagram growth movement.

business instagram use
Source: eMarketer

You may notice that this looks like an exponential growth graph, and that’s probably because it is. Fortunately for you, just because 71% of these businesses are using Instagram doesn’t mean that these businesses are using it to its full potential.

We can make a pretty good estimate as to where this usage rate is going to reside by the end of 2018, so don’t get left behind.

Don’t wait, get started on your Instagram strategy today to generate new leads, amplify your brand, and build new business!

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How to Engage Your Audience Through Social Media

Is your social media falling flat? Don’t sweat it; many hours have gone into perfecting the use of this not-so-secret weapon. Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram strategies are outlined in detail below. Once you understand how they all work and which will suit your business best, learn how to handle them and other factors such as SEO, reviews, and more!

Facebook, Google+, & Twitter

What works: Images, videos, calls to action, industry-related content, general share-worthy content.
What doesn’t work: Lengthy content, bland content, poor business/related/share-worthy balance.

Videos and images are best used to catch the eye of social media readers, though video works a little better to hold the reader’s attention. Whether it’s redirecting consumers to your website or online store, or getting them to stop and look at an interesting piece of content titled by your business, images and videos are your anchor.

The three best ways to get traction from your readers are to:

  • Get them to go straight to your website or store
  • Get them to like/follow
  • and/or get them to share your content

Let’s say three people see your business posts about that 2 for 1 sale. These posts are not likely to be shared, so those same three people will see all your posts, and that’s it. Once people start liking and sharing your posts, you’ll start to see new eyes on your page. This is where industry related/general share-worthy content comes in.

If you’re a physical therapist, for example, get your readers excited to see and share those workout tips and you’ll have a better chance that someone who needs physical therapy will come across them. Having a good mix of these types of posts is extremely important.

Once you’ve gained the attention of your readers with a photo or video, a call to action is a great way to guide them to their next step.

“Do you like these home renovation ideas? Let’s get started with yours!”

As seen in this above example, calls to action can be used for almost every type of post. Tell your reader to check out your website for a business related post, or tell them to read the article or video you’re sharing. Though industry-related or share-worthy content may not lead your reader straight to your website, the posts are more likely to gain likes and shares.

Packaged in with the importance of shared content is the name of your business. Every time your post is shared, someone new has the chance to see you. That’s brand-recognition, baby! When the time comes for that person to need a lawyer, they’ll remember the interesting law posts you shared and seek out the name they remember seeing or hearing about.

On the other hand, lengthy content, bland posts, and a poor balance of business/industry/shareable don’t work well on these media channels. Lengthy content is an especially bad choice for Twitter’s 140 character count limit. As for Facebook and Google+, people just don’t have the attention spans to read posts that are more than a couple of lines long. Keep them short and concise! Don’t post bland, filler content like, “Happy Friday!” unless people have a reason to share it. “Happy Friday, here’s a hilarious cat meme” can improve brand recognition, but only if shared- use humor to your advantage.

Find your balance between business and shareable content. Too much boring business related posts and calls to action can lead to a stagnant viewer count, while too many share-worthy posts may lead to your readers not knowing what your business does.


What works: Images, videos, industry related content, general share-worthy content.
What doesn’t work: Lengthy content, bland content, and it may not suit your vertical.

Pinterest, like Instagram below, is all about the pictures. If you’ve ever been on Pinterest, you know that it’s a very visual sight to behold. The hook of Pinterest is that people are looking for ideas. This will work best for you if your business provides ideas or the means with which to make ideas happen. A hardware store can benefit from Pinterest because you may share tree-house building ideas with your store’s name attached- don’t forget about brand recognition. Once people get the ideas from you, they’ll come into your store to buy the tools they need for the job! The best use of Pinterest includes non-business related content. Show people ideas that may lead them to your business, but don’t try to sell them right then and there.

However, Pinterest may not suit your vertical, and it definitely won’t prosper with too much emphasis on text. Many verticals such as plumbing just don’t have many corresponding ideas given the nature of the job. In this case, Pinterest can only be used for shareable content and brand recognition. The text attached to Pinterest posts is often ignored, so any applicable text should go into an infographic displayed as an image. That isn’t to say that you shouldn’t use any text. A small headline or message will suffice here.


What works: Images, projects.
What doesn’t work: Mostly everything else.

Instagram is a strange beast. The entire point of this medium is to compel readers to follow you and talk about what you offer. This works best for verticals like restaurants because your customers can post images of your food for their friends to see. This also works great for verticals like home improvement. In this vertical, your business can post project and progress images of what you’ve been working on. Seeing these images and sharing them can work well to compel the reader to seek you out.

Instagram posts can’t include links, so just like Pinterest, the aim here is brand recognition. Can you consistently post interesting enough images for your readers to stay interested? Not every business can.


Now that we’ve covered the main social media channels, let’s discuss other ways they can be used. Facebook, Google+, and other media channels support reviews. Aside from the engagement from posts, reviews can make or break a business. You may be thinking “I can’t control what people rate my business”, and you’d be right. However, you can control how you respond to people. You can turn around even the angriest rater by replying to their review in a quick and professional manner. See our other articles to learn about the importance of reviews!

Social Listening

Forbes discusses social listening as finding where your audience is discussing topics related to your brand. People are talking about cars somewhere, and these are great topics for your dealership. The short and sweet of this is that you need to be researching your competitors and your peers. What are people talking about, liking, and sharing, and how can you get in on it? You’ll want to shape your social media strategies around what’s getting the best traction everywhere else. Get researching!


This likely isn’t the first time you’ve read about the importance of SEO, and it definitely won’t be your last. When you search your business’s name or keywords related to your work, how high on the results page does it appear? The more you and your readers are mentioning your name and other keywords in relation to your business, the better your SEO results will be.

Measure Success

Finally, take a step back and look at what you’re doing. Naturally, you’ll want to look for what’s working and what isn’t. Whether you’re counting likes and shares by hand or using Google Analytics to track the information for you, understanding your trends may just be the most important part of the process, so what are you waiting for?

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