Sign Up For Newsletter
Rapbank

[rapbank]

with

A ratchet with leverage

This may be of some interest.

That’s something worth building.

Electricity is a ratchet with leverage. Once communities have access to a little electricity, a solar lantern, say, they quickly discover that they want/need more electricity. The productivity increases create more income which gives them more money to buy more electricity. The leverage that this productivity and income give them (combined with the actual power at their disposal) creates a one-way route toward the future.

The same thinking applies to a personal career.

The first speech you’ll give will be difficult. The tenth one will be easier. Each speech, well-delivered, creates more demand for more speeches. Each speech given gives you more leverage to give better speeches. Better speeches create more demand…

This is the opposite of shoplifting. Shoplifting isn’t a ratchet. The system actually pushes back harder and harder the more you do it. And it has no leverage.

Some businesses work at scale because they’re ratchets (they cause motion in one direction) and they’re able to reinvest from that ratchet to create more leverage. Amazon is certainly the most shining example of this simple process.

But it can also work for the local university. A little learning creates demand for more learning. Useful degrees as a label for effort offer leverage to those that receive them, and the demand for more learning and more leverage gives the university resources to expand and do it even more.

When in doubt, look for the ratchet and look for leverage.

PS A new episode of my podcast Akimbo is out this week. I think it’s an episode worth checking out.

Thank you for reading.

Get Heroic Results from B2B Influencer Marketing with Advice from Ashley Zeckman #CMWorld

This may be of some interest.

Ashley Zeckman Presents at CMWorld 2019

Ashley Zeckman Presents at CMWorld 2019

B2B content marketers have faced many epic foes over the last few years. There’s the nefarious Content Shock, the demoralizing Facebook Algorithm, and the destructive Google Search Update. We have battled them all and continued to thrive.

But now we face our most fearsome foe: The Dreaded Trust Gap.

Less than half of consumers trust brands. Seventy-one percent of buyers are turned off by overly sales-y content. Buyers increasingly prefer content from industry influencers rather than brands.

It’s a daunting problem that needs a bold solution: The Guardians of Content!

In her Content Marketing World 2019 presentation, our very own Director of Digital Strategy Ashley Zeckman explained how B2B content marketers can initiate and scale up a heroic influencer content program of their own. Here are a few key takeaways.

Three Common B2B Influncer Pitfalls

If you’re just getting started with B2B influencer marketing, there are easy mistakes to make. Most of them come from trying to emulate the B2C model: Transactional, glorified sponsorship rather than content co-creation. Here are Ashley’s three most common pitfalls and how to avoid them:

#1: A Disconnected Approach

Say you have a hole in your editorial calendar, so you ask an influencer for an interview. Then you need some quotes for an infographic, so you ask a few others for a nugget of wisdom. Then you reach out on social media to a couple of folks you admire. Then you ask a different set of influencers for quotes for an eBook…

You get the picture. Instead of a strategic campaign that can build into something bigger, you have a ton of one-offs. It’s inefficient. It’s inconsistent for your audience and for the influencers you’re courting.

Instead, Ashley says, aim for a strategic, connected approach. Plan in advance which topics you’re covering, which influencers you want to include, how you’ll use the content, and your plans for repurposing.

#2: Transactional Relationships

There are two ways that influencer relationships can get too transactional. The first is asking too much too quickly, while offering nothing of value in return. Imagine you got an email from a stranger asking you to help them move. Would you do it?

Now imagine an email from a friend asking for that help, and promising pizza and beer? Relationships matter. Take time to honor your influencers, follow them on social media, promote them and their work. Help them succeed, then start with a small ask, like a sound bite for a blog post.

The second way relationships can be too transactional is more literal. If you only work with paid influencers who promote content you wrote… well, that’s more endorsement than influencer content, and it can be less likely to find an enthusiastic audience.

While you may financially compensate some influencers, Ashley says, the emphasis should always be on content co-creation. You want influencers to feel ownership of the finished product – they’ll be much more likely to promote something they’re excited to have made.

#3: Lack of Measurement

Like any other marketing tactic, influencer marketing should be able to prove its worth. Many marketers fail to build in measurement at the beginning, and end up with nothing but vanity metrics to show.

It’s important to plan for measurement before you start. Lay the groundwork for the KPIs you plan to meet, and the metrics you’ll use to show progress. And don’t forget to set benchmarks!

Here are a few of Ashley’s sample KPIs:

Planning Content and Assembling Your Heroes

Keeping those pitfalls in mind, here’s how Ashley recommends designing and implementing an influencer program.

First, determine your topical focus. The topics you plan to cover should hit the intersection of your business priorities, search demand, and influencer expertise. It shouldn’t be too tied to your products and solutions. Think more about what you want your brand to be known for.

Use the same tools you use for content research to find the key terms where there is audience demand and competitor whitespace as well.

With topics in hand, you can start identifying your influencer mix:

You’re not looking for just the people with the largest audience. Instead, focus on people who are respected in their fields, shared interest in your topics, and the ability to actually move people to engage.

It’s also important, says Ashley, to find influencers who fit your content type. If it’s an audio or video asset, look for folks who have demonstrated a willingness an ability to provide that type of content. Beyond that, influencers should be reputable, practical, with real-life experience to draw from.

When you reach out to these influencers, remember to give before you ask:

The nurturing process helps prove your own credibility to influencers, showing you’re a trustworthy partner, and hopefully sparking interest in co-creating awesome content.

The Adventure Continues (and Continues, and Continues)

The ultimate goal of your influencer outreach and nurturing should be a connected universe of content (much like Marvel’s cinematic universe). Who would assemble a hero team and disband them after one adventure? Continue nurturing relationships with your influencers and encourage them to acknowledge and support each other, too. The goal is to develop a community of folks who are always up for another mission to save the world from boring B2B content.

Ready for a heroic influencer marketing success story? See how Alcatel-Lucent drove 6-figure leads with their campaign. Looking for more insights out of CMWorld 2019? Check out these other posts featuring several of this year’s speakers:

The post Get Heroic Results from B2B Influencer Marketing with Advice from Ashley Zeckman #CMWorld appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

Thank you for reading.

How to Generate More Traffic with Google’s New Features

This may be of some interest.

google my business

You’re probably already familiar with Google My Business.

If you aren’t, as a quick recap, Google My Business is a simple way to claim your office address or storefront on Google.

backyard bowl

That way, when someone searches for your business, you’ll show up on the right side of a Google search like the image above.

Or better yet, when someone searches for a product or service you’ll offer, you’ll show up in the local pack.

acai bowl

What’s interesting, though, is Google has been making changes to it, which means it just got easier to generate leads and sales for you.

Best of all, very few marketers are even leveraging these features.

Welcome Offers

What’s one of the easiest ways to generate more sales?

By offering discounts and coupons, right? Just think of it this way, if it didn’t work, Cyber Monday wouldn’t bring in $7.8 billion in sales.

Google knows that people are looking for ways to save money and find good deals. With this new feature, businesses can reward their customers by giving them welcome offers.

By following your business, they can get first-time deals and always keep in touch to see when new deals are posted.

offers

Not only will this bring you new customers but also repeat customers because people will be notified every time you have new deals.

To set up a welcome offer, open your Google My Business app and tap on your profile. Under “Turn followers into customers,” click on ‘Create Welcome Offer’ and hit ‘Create.’

You can enter the following information in your offer:

  • Title (30% off oil changes)
  • Description
  • Coupon Code (Optional)
  • Terms and Conditions (Optional)
  • Website (Optional)

Once finished, you can preview your message and publish. For notifications on new followers, and editing or deleting offers, you can read more on Google Support.

Generate leads in just a few clicks

Google is now adding a “Request a Quote” button in your business listing which was discovered by Joy Hawkins and can also be seen on mobile when searching branded terms.

request quote

This is happening with businesses that have the Google My Business messaging feature on.

To enable messaging, open the Google My Business app and go to your listing.

mobile 2

Navigate to Customers -> Messages and turn on!

moble 1

People will now be able to ask for quotes on cars, insurance, and pretty much any service out there.

You can even review these quotes and reply to them within the Google My Business App and connect with your customers easily for a quick sale.

Make sure you claim your URL

Businesses can now claim a Short Name and URL for their listing.

If you haven’t claimed your URL, make sure you do so before it gets taken by someone else.

Don’t get too crazy though as you can only change your short name three times per year. You can enable this by navigating to your locations page, click “Info” on the left-hand side, and see “add short name”.

short name

You may not think this is a big deal, but if you have used Google My Business before, then you know it’s not easy to share your profile on business cards, emails, and text messages without posting a huge URL.

With short names, your landing page will show as g.page/businessname and can be easily shared.

A business can choose a name between 5 and 32 characters and it can contain the business name, location, and more. People can still flag a name for impersonating another business or if the name is offensive, fake, spammy, or contains inappropriate terms.

So, remember not to violate any policies with your name.

I recommend doing this as it will make it easier for your customers to refer back to your profile where they can read updates, post, make reservations, read/write reviews, and more!

And eventually, people will be able to search short names in Google Maps to find the businesses they love.

Google Assistant

Google is now letting customers order food from restaurants and stores via Google Assistant, which is delivered through DoorDash, Postmates, Delivery.com, Slice, ChowNow, and Zuppler, with other partners possibly coming soon.

naab med

Users can click on Order Now on the listing and can choose pick-up or delivery and if they want to order ASAP or schedule for later. Payment happens through the default payment on Google Pay. If they do not have one, they will be able to add credit card information through this too.

Additionally, customers can order food by using Google Assistant by saying “Okay Google, order food from [restaurant].” If the user has ordered before, it will let them see past orders.

naab

Updating your menu online, as well as delivery service carriers and their apps will help get you started on this.

You’ll want to make sure your menus are consistent through all your service carriers to get the best orders to your hungry customers.

And of course, I know there is a good chance you don’t have a restaurant or aren’t in the food delivery business, but expect to see more ways Google My Business gets integrated with Google Assistant.

It’s better to be early than late.

And speaking of food, Google has also added the popular dish tab on your menu which features images and menu items that people love the most.

pop dish

This scans reviews and images on your Google My Business profile to find the most commonly mentioned dish and adds it to your popular dish tab. Of course, if anything is wrong, you can suggest edits to these.

This helps if there are dishes without names, wrong names, or typos can be fixed.

Auto-generated posts based on reviews

Look, you are busy, but you have no choice but to create content.

Google has given you easier ways to generate posts… in essence, they are now creating auto-generated posts for you.

These recommended posts are suggested through customer reviews on your Google My Business profile and are similar to their Small Thanks program, which tried to get you to highlight reviews given by previous customers on social media and even being able to print it out and display it on your business walls.

You are probably wondering why should you use it, right?

This helps keep people engaged in your profile if you haven’t posted on Google My Business in a while and gives you fast and easy publishing. It even gives you options to customize backgrounds with images and colors.

suggest post

This will pop up on your Google My Business dashboard and all you have to do is hit “Create this post”.

There’s no real way to pick other reviews for Suggested Posts, but you are always welcome to create your own. This is just a simple feature created to help engage your audience more.

Boost your conversions by controlling your images

Businesses can now set a preferred profile cover photo in your image carousel and have a place for logos at the top-right of your profile next to the business name.

This is an additional feature to the regular NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) as well as business hours and will be prominently featured.

images

You can easily create offline material

Google is launching a website where businesses can order and get custom promotional items such as stickers and posters to advertise their business. This is in hopes that it will entice customers to follow places on your profile, add reviews, and create bookings.

You can even order signs like ‘follow us on Google’ and more for free (one shipment per location).

stickers

For posters, you can use the editor to create your own type of poster that can be downloaded and easily printed by yourself or a local printing company. If posters aren’t your cup of tea, you can even share these on social media.

posters

This is currently free as it is a downloadable offer, but you may want to pay to have someone print this out in poster size or as stickers to put on your business windows.

Just think of it this way, people put Yelp signage everywhere because it works. Chances are, it will work on Google as well.

Place Topics

Google launched Place Topics which uses data based on reviews to help give information on what previous customers think about your business.

place top reviews

This can help users see themes of reviews at a glance for businesses and it’s all automated.

It’s kind of like a tag cloud.

This does mean that you cannot generate these yourselves or edit them. So, if you don’t have one, you may not have enough reviews.

Also, if you have a negative one, there’s potentially no way of removing this unless you get the review removed. So, make sure your happy customers are leaving reviews is very important.

Possibly entice them with a 10% discount the next time they come… assuming you aren’t breaking any policy guidelines.

Q&A Auto-Suggest Answers

This feature that Google updated uses previous answers to questions and Google My Business Reviews to answer new questions on the spot. As you start writing the question, different answers start to pop up to give you the best match.

instant qa

So how can you make sure people get the most accurate answer?

Similar to place topics, encouraging your customers to leave detailed reviews of their experience really helps. The more detailed the review is, the better the question gets answered.

Of course, people who are searching for answers can potentially see negative reviews such as prices are too high, service takes long, very long waits on weekends, and more.

In other words, always encourage positive reviews from your loyal customers.

Conclusion

If you haven’t used Google My Business before, you should check it out. With their updates and new features, it is now easier to generate sales and collect leads.

In the future, you’ll see a much deeper integration between Google My Business and Google Assistant. This is going to be important as 50% of the searches will soon by voice searches according to ComScore.

Make sure you are leveraging all of these features and releases Google is launching because it doesn’t cost you money and if you get in early enough, you’ll have an advantage over your competition.

So are you using Google My Business to it’s fullest extent?

The post How to Generate More Traffic with Google’s New Features appeared first on Neil Patel.

Thank you for reading.

White people are tired of dealing with politics on social media

This may be of some interest.

TwitterFacebook

We’re more than a year away from the 2020 presidential election, and some U.S. social media users already want to hit the snooze button on politics.

A new survey from the Pew Research Center found that 46 percent of U.S. social media users feel “worn out” by politics on social media. That’s a 9 percent increase from 2016. 

Pew asked 4,200 U.S. adults in June how they felt about about political discussions on social media. Thirty-eight percent said they “don’t feel strongly” about seeing politics in their feeds, while only 15 percent said they liked it, a 5 percent decrease from 2016. 

This is pretty bad news. The fact that seeing politics online is wearing us down could make us less likely to engage politically, which is absolutely crucial with upcoming elections and life-and-death political issues plaguing the country. Read more…

More about Social Media, Tech, Politics, and Activism

Thank you for reading.

3 ways to deal with conflict more productively

This may be of some interest.

Sometimes, a conflict requires you to solve an internal conflict. This trainer gives advice on 3 productive tips to do so.

When you think of conflict, what comes to mind? Is it something that you try to avoid? Something you dread? Do you associate it with words like ‘somebody gets hurt’ or ‘fighting’?

Read Full Story

Thank you for reading.

Gritty surprises kid with custom Gritty prosthetic leg

This may be of some interest.

TwitterFacebook

Gritty is so many things, but above all, he’s a big hairy piece of joy.

On Tuesday, Gritty, the legendary Philadelphia Flyers mascot, surprised 7-year-old fan Caiden O’Rourke at Shriners Hospital for Children in Philadelphia. Gritty was there to deliver a custom Gritty-themed prosthetic leg to Caiden, who was born with a rare orthopedic condition that requires him to use two prosthetic legs.

Caiden, whose birthday is in a week, seemed thrilled to receive it. Look at his face.

SURPRISE: @GrittyNHL surprises 7 y/o fan Caiden O’Rourke at @shrinersphilly who just got a new custom Gritty prosthetic leg this morning. Look at his face! @6abc pic.twitter.com/jPMqtUVZ7x

— Jeannette Reyes (@6abcJeannette) June 25, 2019 Read more…

More about Viral Videos, Social Media, Gritty, Culture, and Web Culture

Thank you for reading.

Hands on the wheel with Tesla's new in-car racing video game

This may be of some interest.

TwitterFacebook

Why not play a game while sitting and waiting for your electric vehicle to charge up? No, not on your phone. That’d be too easy. Instead, you can now use the very car you’re sitting in — well, if it’s a Tesla.

Tesla’s Easter egg drawer full of video games housed in the main touchscreen is bursting with new additions, including a kart racing game from Vector Unit made just for Tesla. A new bottom menu on the main screen now includes an Arcade button for direct access to the games menuBeach Buggy Racing 2’s Tesla Edition takes drivers on 22 beach-themed tracks. The new game is rolling out to Tesla Model S, X, and 3 owners this week. Read more…

More about Tesla, Video Games, Tech, Gaming, and Transportation

Thank you for reading.

Instagram Pushes IGTV Growth With Horizontal Video

This may be of some interest.

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Social Media Marketing Talk Show, a news show for marketers who want to stay on the leading edge of social media. On this week’s Social Media Marketing Talk Show, we explore horizontal video support for IGTV and other video broadcasting updates with special guests, Luria Petrucci and David […]

The post Instagram Pushes IGTV Growth With Horizontal Video appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

Thank you for reading.

The 19 Instagram Accounts With the Most Followers (& What Marketers Can Learn From Them)

This may be of some interest.

When Instagram was first released, it was thought of only as a fun, visual social media network. Nowadays, it’s also used as a major content promotion tool for brands and influencers.

In fact, according to Sprout Social, 80% of Instagram users follow a brand, and one of the three most-viewed Stories of all time was posted by a business account.

Along with business accounts, influencer marketing is also on the rise. For instance, 93% of influencer marketing campaigns took place on Instagram in 2018.

By introducing key product updates like video, stories, and IGTV, Instagram now boasts over 1 billion monthly active users who spend close to an hour scrolling through the app each day they log in.

Instagram’s popularity lets most brands forge an emotional connection with a massive audience. Some brands are so good at visually engaging and resonating with Instagram users that they’ve attracted tens of millions of followers.
*Bonus Content* Click here to unlock 20 powerful strategies & hacks for  increasing Instagram engagement.

To help you learn from the platform’s best of the best, we’ve compiled a list of 19 accounts with the highest number of users — as well as a few key takeaways from each.

Because the accounts with the most followers belong to influencers and celebrities, we’ve split this rundown into two sublists that are brand and influencer specific. 

1. Instagram

Followers: 303 Million

Instagram sets a great example for brands who truly want to engage an audience on their app. By curating and reposting their users’ most captivating content on their own profile, Instagram shows their followers that everyday people can meet their creative and artistic potential on the platform.

This inspires brands and normal Instagram users to spend the time and effort required to craft visually gripping content that will instantly hold an audience’s attention.

Instagram also does a good job of promoting their stories and IGTV show about celebrities, wildlife, and other culturally relevant topics. They post original content that highlights upcoming episodes, but the posts read more like a feature story than an advertisement, which sparks more interest in the show.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. National Geographic

Followers: 111 Million

National Geographic hires the most talented photographers in the world, so their Instagram posts of landscapes, cityscapes, and the surrounding life always seem to be awe-inspiring. But their stunning visuals aren’t the only reason why they’ve attracted over 100 million followers.

National Geographic is a historic magazine that’s famous for their credible journalism and compelling storytelling. In each post’s caption, they are able to craft fascinating narratives about the photo or video, usually in a way that spreads awareness for a relevant environmental issue.

National Geographic also uses Instagram Stories, Stories Archive, and IGTV to drive traffic to featured articles and videos on their website. But they also know their followers prefer not to leave the app.

Instead of using gimmicky visuals and clickbait copy to coax people into visiting their website, they actually summarize the feature article or video in their stories and IGTV shows.

For marketers, National Geographic’s Instagram strategy clarifies that it’s crucial to meet your audience where they are, and not force them to go somewhere just because you want them to go there.

If people end up clicking through to your website, that’s great. But you should be more than willing to educate your audience where they want to be educated, even if it results in a lower amount of traffic.

3. Nike

Followers: 88.5 Million

In the advertising industry, Nike is known for their motivational ads that inspire athletes to believe in themselves when aiming to reach their full potential.

On Instagram, the iconic brand’s content follows this theme, with posts in the form of short films, documentaries, and inspirational videos and photos. Nike also uses Instagram to update their followers with quick news about the sports world, proving that they deeply understand their audience’s interests and desires.

4. Real Madrid

Followers: 72.6 Million

Real Madrid is arguably the most popular soccer team in the world, so most of the team’s Instagram posts update their massive fan base on scores, highlights, and transactions.

But the way they attract and engage twice as many Instagram followers as teams with similar fan bases isn’t through standard updates. They’ve built their enormous following by giving their fans an inside look of the team’s everyday activities through player takeovers and practice highlights on IGTV.

Breaking down these barriers between fan and player makes Real Madrid’s fan base feel like they actually know their favorite players on a personal level, which develops a more intimate and loyal relationship between the two.

5. FC Barcelona

Followers: 71.1 Million

Like Real Madrid, FC Barcelona updates Barcelona fans with sports photography, season-related stats, information about Barcelona players, and other fun tidbits related to the team and season.

They use a mix of content styles with videos, action shots, and posed photos, but they always use many tags, hashtags, and eye-popping emojis in their captions.

During games and other events, you can find FC Barcelona launching one or multiple Stories with their own video content as well as curated content sourced from fans.

With curated Stories by fans, they’re able to post more fresh, interesting content. FC Barcelona’s curated Stories also enable fans to contribute to the Instagram channel. While we aren’t able to post stories directly, you can find some on the account’s page.

6. 9GAG

Followers: 50.2 Million

With plenty of dog, cat, and baby videos, meme references, and jokes that are almost too relatable, 9GAG has one of the funniest accounts on Instagram.

The account’s Instagram stories and Stories Archives engage their audience well too — they post a ton of polls about topics that everyone has an answer for like, “Is soup a food or a beverage?” and “Would you travel to the past or future?”

They also use Instagram stories to drive traffic to their website by asking their followers to swipe up and see if they correctly guessed the name of a TV show or movie with only emojis as clues. On IGTV, they generate even more brand engagement by letting their followers ask questions during live Q&As with celebrities.

As the only online content platform on this list, 9GAG proves to marketers that interacting with your audience is one of the best ways to engage them, develop a relationship, and attract more followers like them.

7. NASA

Followers: 43.7 Million

Scrolling through NASA’s Instagram feed makes you feel a little like an astronaut floating through the depths of space. You’ll experience intimate views of different planets, constellations, and supernovas in the Milky Way galaxy, all of which are taken by NASA’s spacecrafts and Hubble Space Telescope.

 NASA’s Instagram Stories and IGTV channel also educate their followers about interesting space insights, like the views of the sun and Earth, the search for life in space, and NASA’s new technology launches

NASA’s popularity on Instagram proves that you can actually create educational content that doesn’t sacrifice any entertainment value.

8. UEFA Champions League

Followers: 41.3 Million

In the last year, the Champions League surpassed the NBA’s account in Instagram followers. Like the other soccer brand accounts we’ve noted, the Champions League regularly posts action and team shots, as well as updates related to upcoming and past games. 

Along with regular updates and action shots, some of the account’s regular posts include stats like “Top Scorers,” behind-the-scenes videos, and team roster images. 

 

9. Marvel

Followers: 37.5 Million

Marvel posts regularly about its movies, TV shows, and Marvel.com content. It also mixes things up with the use of photo and video posts. Additionally, the account occasionally uses fun videos to cross-promote with other Marvel-affiliated accounts and influencers. 

While many other accounts, like HBO, promote their content by posting trailers as Instagram Stories, Marvel uses Stories to cover red carpet premiere events. These stories include photos and clips of the stars, as well as other interesting things that happen at the events. Most recently, Marvel featured the premieres of Dark Phoenix and Avengers: Endgame. 

10. Chanel

Followers: 34.9 Million

Throwback Thursday will always be a huge deal on social media — who doesn’t love a heavy dose of nostalgia every week? Recently, though, Chanel decided to take #tbt to the next level. They’ve been evoking nostalgia in fashionistas all over the world by posting old ads that spotlight previous fashion trends for their Chanel Holidays campaign every day.

The legendary fashion brand also posts a lot of content about Coco Chanel’s early fashion influences to promote Inside Chanel, a web series that recounts Coco’s life and how she built her fashion empire.

Harnessing the power of the past is one of the most effective ways to evoke an emotional response from your audience and forge a connection with them. With that in mind, nostalgia should always be in your marketing arsenal.

1. Cristiano Rinaldo 

Followers: 170 Million

So, who has the most followers on Instagram? That would be Cristiano Ronaldo, who’s been called the world’s best soccer player (or fútbol player).

Along with the expected soccer action shots, his Instagram strategy largely involves paid partnerships and cross promotions. Here’s just one example: 

The account’s content is a mix of sports-related updates, photos capturing his life outside of the arena, and occasional motivational posts about topics like fitness and clearing your mind.

One thing this account puts great effort into is the imagery. All of its images and videos are crisp, clear, colorful, and high-production quality. We’ve found that editing images before uploading to Instagram can really make a difference in how professional a brand or individual account looks. Ronaldo’s account is one great example of this.

2. Ariana Grande

Followers: 156 Million

Ariana Grande has recently gained an incredibly large following on the platform. Her brand is especially relevant to the younger demographic of Instagram. 

Throughout the last four years, it seems that Ariana has not needed to use partnerships or promotions to strengthen her following. Here’s an example of one of the few promotional posts she has had on her account, which dates back to 2015:

Currently, it seems her strategy involves a high posting frequency, with around six or more updates per week. She mainly uses the platform to update users on her daily life and her music career. These posts often include photos of her dog, behind-the-scenes videos, and concert highlights.

Ariana has also experimented with IGTV. Recently, she used it to announce the drop of her new song “Sweetener” by including the song in the post itself, as well as a link to it in the caption.

This type of strategy might make her followers and fans feel like they’re being rewarded for their loyalty on the platform. At the same time, the possibility of hearing Ariana’s new music might entice new audiences to follow her. 

Many of her posts usually include short captions which may only include one or two emojis. This does not seem to be uncommon for major celebrities on the platform, as they may not have a large need to optimize captions.

While Ariana and other listed influencers may not have, or need, a caption strategy, those starting out on Instagram or aiming to grow their following should follow optimization best practices. These include crafting interesting captions that may use hashtags, and account tagging.

3. Selena Gomez

Followers: 151 Million

Selena Gomez’s content is a fun mix of paid partnerships, selfies, and quotes. As the former most-followed person on Instagram, she has mastered optimized photo captions, Stories, paid partnerships and cross-promotions with other influencers. 

While her posts strategically embrace paid promotions and influencer cross promotions, she also uses Instagram to share inspirational quotes or her thoughts on certain political topics, which adds more of a human side to her page.

4. Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson

Followers: 145 Million

On any given day, Dwayne Johnson might use the platform to update fans on his family life, what he’s eating on his “cheat days”, his fitness products, or the movies he’s working on. He’s also started using IGTV to promote his projects and personal brand. He often films himself giving fitness tips, discussing his new products, or updating fans on other interesting events in his life.

5. Kim Kardashian West

Followers: 141 Million

The Keeping Up With The Kardashians star has recently posted a lot more about her family and her KKW Beauty Line. She also is no stranger to cross promotions and partnerships. While most of her posts are artsy or strategic, she is not afraid to post something jaw-dropping or humorous from time to time.

Here’s one funny post where she promotes The Secret Life of Pets.

She uses IGTV to promote her projects, like trailers for Keeping Up with the Kardashians. She will also occasionally team up with other influencers for tutorial-styled posts.

In this video, her hair stylist Mario Dedivanovic walks fans through how they can recreate Kim’s recent Met Gala look:

6. Kylie Jenner

Followers: 137 Million

While Kylie Jenner’s individual account follows her day-to-day life, she has also used it as a tool to promote her companies: Kylie Cosmetics and Kylie Skin. Although Kylie regularly tags and engages in cross promotion with her companies’ accounts, her personal Instagram still has over 100 million more followers than the other two, combined.

Most recently, Kylie has used IGTV to give fans Kylie Cosmetics tutorials. This strategy allows her audiences to see how the products look and learn how to use them before they make a purchase.

This type of content may engage prospective buyers that are both experienced and less experienced in shopping for makeup.

7. Beyoncé

Followers: 128 Million

Like Ariana Grande, Beyoncé focuses more on her artistic side than in cross promotion or paid promotion. She also breaks from the usual mold by rarely posting captions and letting her high-quality imagery or video speak for itself.

On her Instagram, you can usually find slideshows of high-quality photos of her, high-fashion shots where she’s seen in different styles and outfits, and occasional promotions of her own personal projects — such as her Netflix concert documentary, Homecoming.

 

8. Leo Messi

Followers: 121 Million

The soccer player regularly posts photos of himself on the field, as well as his daily life. His posts are a mix of photos and well-edited videos. When videos are included, they are often part of paid promotions. Messi has also dabbled in the Stories feature, where he shows off photos of himself, images from game events, and some images of his family. 

While he doesn’t post large captions on his personal posts, he usually optimizes paid promotional posts with tags and hashtags. He also posts thoughtful captions in both English and Spanish. This might open up his following opportunities internationally. 

9. Taylor Swift

Followers: 118 Million

The musician’s Instagram is filled with photos from concerts as well as a few photos from her everyday life. Unlike Beyonce and Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift embraces captions with emojis and hashtags. She also does an excellent job of tagging other accounts. This account is a good example of how strong captions and account tagging strategies can really optimize your Instagram.

Her posts are often colorful and in slideshow format, which allows users to swipe through multiple images. 

Taylor has also used her Instagram as a tool to promote shows and albums. Like Ariana Grande, she recently posted stories to promote and give users a taste of her single, “ME!” 

As they viewed the short story, users could swipe up to a link which listed sites where you could listen to, download, or save the song. This strategy gives users a taste of content and then a quick payoff when they swipe up.

Key Takeaways From the Most Followed Accounts

By looking at the most-followed brands and influencers, we can see some key strategies that many of them have in common.

Here are a few that you can start using, even without a giant following or a large social-media budget.

  • Optimize captions witty or thoughtful captions with hashtags, account tags, and eye-popping emojis.
  • Use cross promotion or paid strategies to join forces with other accounts or influencers.
  • Experiment with new features including Stories or IGTV to give users new ways to engage and consume your branded content.

Instagram Hacks

Thank you for reading.