In case you’re an entrepreneur, chances are you’re aiming to raise your brand awareness using as many tricks and methods as possible. While it’s definitely beneficial to prioritize marketing and engagement, it’s often easier said than done, especially if you’re competing in an already saturated market.
A lot of business owners and entrepreneurs decide to fight for their spot under the sun by incorporating lengthy blog posts and optimizing their pages for popular search engines. Even though that’s a completely viable strategy, it often requires a lot of time, resources, and effort.
Ephemeral content had its debut back in 2011 thanks to Snapchat, which was then a revolutionary way of spreading content amongst users quickly and efficiently. Now that Snapchat has seen massive growth in popularity with over 185 million daily users in Q4’18, many brands have decided to ride the wave and promote their products or services on a platform that deletes every piece of content older than 24h.
This particular concept was quickly integrated by both Instagram and Facebook, and is today known as the “story.” It’s obviously quite a useful and powerful way to promote your business, but the question is why? and how?
How Does Ephemeral Content Work?
Even though it seems like a complex system, it’s rather straightforward, and the idea behind it is simple – the average attention span of a visitor is about 8 seconds, meaning you have to grab their attention during the first few seconds of their visit or else you won’t be able to keep them interested.
The perfect way to do this is to cater to the visitor’s contemporary style of living. In other words, you ought to deliver content quickly, efficiently, and it has to be engaging because you have mere seconds to pull everything off. That means you have to pay special attention to your social media photo quality, and on top of that, you have to make sure everything gets done in a professional manner and up to the highest standards.
How can Ephemeral Content Boost your Business?
There are plenty of ways and methods you can use in order to boost your brand awareness. Some are easier to execute than others, but all of them are beneficial and should be considered.
Here are a couple of tips and tricks you can use, and also a couple of notable benefits of ephemeral content:
It Creates FOMO and Engagement
FOMO stands for “Fear of missing out,” and it’s quite a popular strategy used in many industries including the stock market, digital advertising, and of course – awareness spreading.
The vast majority of people are susceptible to FOMO, and large businesses have figured out the way to capitalize on this, by delivering short and visually appealing content that’s bound to vanish in 24 hours. As a result of that time restriction, most people will take action without sparing a single moment.
In conclusion, temporary content creates a sense of urgency which consequently creates FOMO and helps with spreading awareness.
Creating an Emotional Relationship with Your Audience
The vast majority of business giants such as Apple, Google, or Amazon have formed a bond with their users by publishing content that makes the consumer feel protected, respected, and cared for. Human psychology is a tough nut to crack in and of itself, but it’s well-known that if you humanize your brand, it’ll strengthen both your authenticity and identity.
Ephemeral content allows you to publish an engaging and short story, and make it seem like a casual interaction with your audience. If you show your audience that you’re a mere human rather than some super-strict CEO, it will definitely shatter the stigma of executives being stiff and solely business-oriented.
It Costs Less than Campaigns
One of the significant benefits of this concept is the fact that it doesn’t require as many resources as full-blown advertising campaigns. In order to execute a successful advertising campaign, you have to devote ample resources for designers, writers, actors, etc. However, with temporary content, you don’t have to be a Photoshop master nor do you have to waste time on editing, copyrighted music, and other accompanying nuisances. All you have to do is be authentic, honest, and engaging. As per this relatively recent research, 86% of consumers prefer an authentic and honest brand personality on social networks.
While saving money should not be a priority when advertising and raising awareness, it’s a welcome surprise.
Post Regularly and Remain Consistent
One of the crucial things for the success of this endeavor is to stay consistent no matter how hard it is to pull off, especially if you’re already swarmed with business obligations. In case you’re not able to maintain a favorable level of consistency, don’t hesitate to introduce your users to some BTS (behind-the-scenes) footage.
The beauty of temporary content is that it doesn’t always have to be super-professional and even high-quality. As we’ve mentioned, authenticity is by far more important than quality. Therefore, if you can’t manage to upload a quality piece for whatever reason, don’t hesitate to turn on your camera and record a short bit with some BTS footage. It’s a great way of showing how things work behind the curtains, and how much effort you’re investing in catering to your loyal clients.
It’s Easier to Reach the Younger Generation(s)
A recent survey showed that more than 64% of Instagram visitors from the US are in the 18-29 age group. That means 2/3 of Instagram’s daily visitors are millennials. If you’re trying to reach a younger audience, promoting your ephemeral content through social networks is the best course of action.
Another recent research has shown that millennials in the United States alone spend over $600 billion annually. Therefore, it’s a market you should consider penetrating because there is definitely money to be made.
Run Polls and Q&A Sessions
This is somewhat of an extension to the Create an emotional relationship rule. Most popular brands publish polls bi-annually or annually to get some feedback from their clients and potential customers. On top of that, announcing a survey tends to cause a positive reaction because it shows that you care for your audience’s opinion.
Scheduling a Q&A session is a bit more complicated as it requires you to dedicate a bit of time to it, but it will almost certainly yield good results. As we’ve mentioned, regular interaction with your audience is of utmost importance when it comes to getting their trust and ultimately – making money. Grab yourself a cup of coffee, schedule a 15-minute Q&A session, and interact with your clients – it’s as simple as that.
Sharing is Caring
A great way to further boost the engagement with your audience is to persuade them to share the piece you’ve published, but you have to make sure it doesn’t come off as compulsory.
In fact, it’s crucial that you avoid forcing anything because it’s usually a strategy frowned upon by many. Instead, try motivating your audience by organizing a small competition and aim for user-generated content. You don’t always have to be the author of a promotional piece. User-generated content allows you to promote your brand through your audience, whether it’s via funny memes, parodies, or whatever you and your audience deem interesting. Let the system work in your favor by spreading shareable content all over the internet, rather than trying to do everything by yourself.
Don’t Neglect the High-Quality Material
It’s easy to get carried away with ephemeral content. It doesn’t require too much effort, is pretty affordable, and most importantly – it doesn’t take too much time off your day.
However, many businesses get carried away and start neglecting their high-quality promotional stuff such as commercials and start substituting everything with temporary content. It’s not a terrible idea per se, but it’s something you should avoid. While people do appreciate an honest Snapchat story from time to time, high-quality content is still a necessity.
Spend Some Money on Influencers
Popular Instagrammers are more than willing to promote a particular product for a certain price and improve your business. The price usually varies based on the person’s popularity and followers count. If you’re serious about gaining trust and loyalty from young people, paying an influencer to make a short story about your product or service is a fantastic idea.
The best thing about this particular step is the sheer availability of popular personas. In other words, you don’t have to go through a ton of bureaucracy to make a deal. All you have to do is send them an inquiry and wait for their response. You are more than likely to get a response within only a few days.
Spreading your brand awareness is a challenging task, but it’s definitely doable with a few simple tricks. The great thing about it is that you don’t need any special equipment, skills, or talents. Instead, all you have to do is be authentic and honest about it.
| About the Guest Author:
Claire Morgan is a marketing consultant and lecturer who, thanks to her integrated approach to business, stands behind many digital strategies of renowned brands. She enjoys traveling and passionately blogs about the latest marketing and lifestyle trends.