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Harnessing the Selfie Craze to Enhance Your Brand’s Image

Whether you love them or loathe them, selfies have taken the social media world by storm. With over 57 million #selfie tags on Instagram alone, the selfie has become one of the most popular trends this decade, with the term even named as the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year for 2013.

With the selfie trend seemingly not diminishing anytime soon, communication professionals should consider seizing the opportunity to start thinking of innovative ways that their clients and companies can use the format to tell a visual story that’s both relevant and strategic.

Selfies can be so much more than a fun trend. They can inspire and generate hype around a specific brand, topic or service. Instagram has become a popular social media platform for businesses to connect with socially engaged consumers and with 130 million active users every month and 1 billion photos ‘liked’ per day, this app can be the perfect tool for instant viral marketing success. It can generate amazing coverage in a short period of time – coverage you could only dream of achieving with a press release.

Nowadays, audiences are more visual beings than ever. It’s the responsibility of PR, advertising and marketing professionals alike to keep up with such trends in order to ensure maximum results for their clients. In a narcissistic world, the selfie provides the perfect marketing tool for people to not only promote themselves, but also their products and services. It’s a clever, cost-effective way to profit from an already popular social trend. It can ultimately inspire action and start a movement around your brand.

Three reasons why corporate entities and businesses are joining the selfie movement:

• Guaranteed participation – People on social media platforms prefer visual content. Since the selfie movement is a world-celebrated phenomenon, it guarantees great audience participation.

• Attention grabbing – It has been proven that user-generated content grabs attention and gathers a great deal more public interest than brand-generated promotional content.

• Personal touch – Unlike most advertising imagery and campaigns, selfies are not generally digitally enhanced by Photoshop. They can provide the audience with a more realistic and genuine perspective that they can relate to.

Although selfies can integrate humour and reality for social media campaigns in ways in which generic marketing tools can’t, they still have to be used in the right way in order to be successful. This is where professionals can step in to ensure the maximum impact of such campaigns.

The benefits of hiring social media specialists to run your selfie campaign:

• Wider coverage – communication experts know how to make a campaign popular and enable it to go viral through multiple media platforms. Even if you are running a simple selfie campaign on Facebook, these professionals can devise ways to attract other followers from different social media networks to participate.

• Greater visibility – Through the use of hashtags, SEO, engaging graphics, as well as utilising their personal established networks, they are able to create better visibility to campaigns and promotional activities.

• Better engagement – By linking incentives such as promotional offers and prizes to your brand, social media professionals guarantee greater engagement and participation.

• Dedicated team – Running an online campaign is time consuming and can often be too much to handle for someone who has no prior knowledge of the online market. Overall, a team of social media marketing specialists will guarantee much better results compared to non-professionals running a campaign online.

So there you have it. Don’t let this marketing opportunity pass you by. Get on board the self-regarding selfie bandwagon and use your skills to harness the craze’s power to do great things for your brand. You never know, your simple snap could turn out to be the most effective tool in your marketing armoury.