Could Instagram be the new PR-Gram and is Camera+ the new PR+? The news of Facebook buying Instragram for a cool $1 billion signifies just how influential and important Mark Zuckerberg thinks images are in social sharing. The recent news underscores the current state of social media on the go and why Zuckerberg obviously believes image is everything.
In today’s Social PR world, a picture is worth a thousand words. So how can you leverage images to be more than just eye candy and attract quality likes, follows and shares? Here is the download:
If you are armed with the right photo apps, editing tricks and shooting know how, the iPhone just might be the secret PR weapon to reporting company news with pictures that makes the days of hiring a photographer history (almost).
1. Instagram the new PRagram- In my Search Engine Watch column last September, Social PR Going SoLoMo: 3 Ways to Optimize, I talked about Instagram being a forward thinking way of reporting company news and events:
Sharing PR in an Instant: Instagram, a photo-sharing app for iPhone and most recently Android users, has become a widespread sensation among individual users. Put your brand on Instagram, sharing news via mobile on the go with cool pictures documenting news, events, people and places? Brands like “The Today Show” and Starbucks are taking the Social PR leap reporting the news with Instagram.
2. Camera+ for PR Pop Art- Studies show that images increase readability in press releases, blog posts and social media. Optimized images can also increase your online visibility in search engines in addition to attract searchers to click on a story based on the image. Using apps such as Camera+ to add special effects including lighting, color effects, borders and captions can make a so-so images look like a piece of art.
3. iPhone, Smartphone, Smart PR – If you doubt the quality of the iPhone camera just browse the “Popular” shots on Instagram and you will change your mind. Instead of hiring a professional photograph to capture your next event in pictures, crowdsource your company’s iPhone users and have a context for best picture of the event. This will help turn your employees into instant reporters and give you more image content for social sharing.
Visual Success Story
Images can tell a story and also break up post monotony and keep social readers interested; words from a pro.
Social Media Strategist Michelle Marie must be doing something right being! She boasts a solid Klout Score of 78 and was selected by Google as one of the “Most Entertaining & Interesting” personalities on Google+ which resulted in placement on the Google+ Suggested User List (SUL). One thing Michelle does very well across all her social network channels is the use of images that blend impact, entertainment and social influence.
“Having a mixture of different types of content is very important,” said Michelle. “I try to reach different audiences, some people respond to visual posts more than long text posts. Some people like to be stimulated with visual and sound so I try to incorporate videos into my posts as well.”
The Social Camera Stats
- Flickr – the iPhone is the website’s most used camera
- Instagram registered users had nearly doubled since December, rising to 27 million from 15 million
- In less than two years Instagram has already hosted more than 500 million images
- Facebook has about 845 million users, many of whom came to the service to share photos
- Facebook users have uploaded more than 170 billion photos to the social network
Mobile PR Photo App -etite
Mobile photography like Instagram and Camera+ make it easy to tell a story with images. Smart public relations and social journalism pros can now take a creative step forward with smartphones.