This module is all about exploring different approaches to content creation such as online zines, books, websites, blogs. As someone who wants to enter the marketing industry the leading form of marketing linked to content creation at the moment is influencers.
Influencers originally started off as sponsorship with famous celebrities but with the new generation I’ve personally seen a decline of trust in the bigger celebrities meaning people with a follower base such as YouTubers and Instagramers have been taken over the influencer market. Known as influence marketing is when companies supply merchandise/products to these influencers that have a following, if the influencer is a fan of the product they’ll endorse/place products towards their followers through social media. This has become the more popular form of marketing because influencers such as YouTubers and Instagramers tend to have a better form of engagement with their followers making it seem like less of an advertisement.
So back to me… as someone entering the marketing career it’s often wanted that you have good ties to social media and blog writing as this is where most of the modern spending and marketing takes place; Online. This means for my content creation I want to expand my blog skills and create a blog/Instagram following for myself meaning that when apply for these marketing roles I have experience and knowledge of this sector.
My Personal outcomes for this module are…
- Google Analytics – A service provided by google where you can track engagement of your website through google and organise advertising.
- Inbuilt Website Designer Tools – Website such as WordPress and Wix allow for bloggers to easily create sites, they also provide useful tools for engagement and analytics.
- Influencers tend to have a consistent format through their posts whether it’s sticking to same colour tones through Instagram images or having template laid out blog pages.
- Writing Styles
- Blogs require a certain level of writing skills that I don’t feel I process, to drive up engagement I will need to find my own writing style and stay consistent.
The Assessed learning Outcomes are…
- Produce and record design ideas.
- Use appropriate skills and technologies to produce a design solution to a problem.
- Describe the vocabulary of design for online content.
- Develop skills in digital content creation.
- Evaluate finished products
As this project is going to be mostly self taught i’ll be needing to do a-lot of research to be able to pull off the level of content I want.
For my research I want to search online looking at a few examples from different areas of blogging, as an added bonus when looking i’ll scan through these accounts to see if I can find any form of influencing taking place.
Instagram Blogger 1
So this first account I found isn’t massive, she has 10.2k followers and aims around her photography. I found the account by searching ‘lifestyle blogging’ and looking at recent posts. The account caught my attention due to her styling.
As you can see from my screenshot she’s taken a very organised clean professional approach to how she’s laid her profile. She has consistent colours through her posts. She’s stylised her story headers (the circular titles). She would be a good target for influencing as she clearly has engagement with 10.2k followers. As a company, supplying a hamper full of your product is worth it for as advertisement to 10.2 thousand people.
The colours she uses are on the lighter end of the spectrum with dashes of gold/bronze. This colours are very clean and create an expensive look due to the gold/bronze hints. She displays items of quality such as channel and The New Yorker (funny as she’s based in Russia. Influencing/Advertising?) both are considered to be aimed at the higher class. She’s aiming and selling a lifestyle though her posts.
Here is one example looking through where products have been placed in her posts. Now there isn’t a way for me to prove this is from the company but her display is still considered influencing and although the language barrier I can see her engagement obviously approve of the product.
Another thing i like about her account is how her bio is well laid out. It feels very clean with the list and links. Let’s follow the link and see if her style is consistent through her website.
Her website, like her profile is very clean but this time it’s due to it’s minimal approach. Yo can tell she’s all about the photography as there is no stories behind the images, she also has easy access for contact and gallery.
In the bottom corner you can see she uses an online portfolio designer, something I’m yet to research but this could be another to look at.
Instagram Blogger 2
For my next research profile I want to deconstruct a male influencer, this will give me options for comparison and allow me to find some styles, techniques and formats that might better fit me.
Finding a Male lifestyle influencer was harder then expected as most of the accounts were aimed towards bodybuilding and fashion which isn’t something my blog will predominantly feature. After scanning #travelblogger I managed to find a guy under the username @i_am_global.
With a following of 35.8k he focuses largely on himself throughout his posts with all images containing him, although not necessarily facing directly at the camera.
While his following is almost 4x that of the first account his formatting is a lot more laid back. He has similarly laid out story titles separating his posts and a composure consistency to his selfies but he doesn’t focus at all on colours or styling. Looking at his posts tells me he’s more focused on what he’s portraying rather then the artistic approach which suggests he’s not aiming to become an influence or buy into marketing. This also explains why there is no product placement in his posts.
While I appreciate the lifestyle he’s showing I’m more about the artistic element then the lifestyle. While I’d love to feature loads of travelling in the uptake of the blog I’m limited but time but that doesn’t mean it’s not something I can expand to. So while his technique wouldn’t be appropriate for my main bulk of content it could be used in my stories. With stories unless you have a massive following it’s hard to upkeep styles as the system works on a live camera basis. This is because on-the-go pictures wouldn’t be colour corrected etc.
Instagram Blogger 3
This third blogger I found after searching #photographer, the reason I chose to feature her as an example is she does something i’m yet to see others do that I wanted to include myself and that’s taking advantage of Instagram rule of three.
Instagram, whether it’s the mobile, web or a widget integration uses a rule of three. This is where images are listed in columns of three. Some photographers I have researched before take advantage of this rule by uploading photos in set of three so that rows of images match. This means that you don’t have to focus on a specific colour tone throughout your entire collection. As someone who has massive variation in the composition and colour profiles I use being able to switch colour tones every so often is necessary. This also allows for more variation of content which will drive up viewership/followers.
As you can see, with her sets of three she focuses on subjects as her location doesn’t change. Between rows she usually changes models/people that are featured but keeps to similar styles. This will defiantly be a technique that I copy but instead of changing subjects i’ll instead change locations. This means i’ll be uploading in sets of three per location, the colours and format will stay the same within the set but can alter from location to location.
Another thing she does well between the sets is uploading in a specific pattern. From the examples above toy can see 6 images. These images are composed of two sets which feature two different couples. The two middle images (second column) feature images that are differently composed to the rest of their set. For example they both are a more closely angled and focus on hands while the other images within the set the couple are the main area of focus.
So from what I have learnt from the three Instagram profiles is that my page will be laid out like this.
For the profile picture I’ve currently just added a filler image but when i make a live profile i’d like to get a more natural profile picture.
I’ve annotated the images to visually explain my format. Here is a final rundown.
Each set will be of a different location, each image within their sets will be visually similar but different angles, the most ‘outlier’ image will be placed in the ‘Image 2’ slot.
Currently as I haven’t got content I can’t evaluate colours, presets or composition. The next steps of my research will have to be a process of trial and error through photo-shoots and editing.
One of the first steps of my production will be kickstarting my profile with pictures I already have taken, this will mean re-colouring and editing the photos so they work as a set of three. The reason I’m wanting to start off with non-original content is so that it provides a background for new followers. The aim for influencers is to build up a following and to boost my followers there a large part of marketing that will have to go behind my images/sets. This is something that will have to be done to each individual and set. Instagram works through hashtags. Hashtags are used as labels that link peoples interests to words/phrases. For example, people who want to view funny content will be following hashtags such as #funny and #memes, while those who want more lifestyle content will be following #lifestyle and #travelling and etc. The marketing tactic behind this is to follow trends and links as many of these hashtags to your content as possible all while attracting the right audience; the right audience equals engagement, engagement equals more reach, more reach equals more audience.
In order to track trending topics and boost my engagement i’m going to be using an analytic tool called Later.com – Rated one of the best Instagram trackers. They provide features that will help with increasing engagement, optimising post times, drive traffic and help attract the right followers.