Obsessively curious

To squirrel

/ˈskwɪr(ə)l/

  • Verb: To search in an inquisitive and restless manner.
  • Verb: To store valuable ideas in a safe place.
  • Noun: An agile, web-dwelling varmint with a bushy tail, typically feeding on pure digital insight.

We combine strategic vision, creative flair and analytical precision to bring your wildest marketing dreams to life.

Instagrowth: Making the most of Instagram

Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms out there and a vital (and free!) marketing tool for your business. It can showcase your company culture, your people and all the key elements that make up your USP – the crucial part is turning your engaged followers into customers.

So how can you attract more followers on Instagram and grow your business organically?

Instagram Influencers

An effective way of growing your Instagram account (and hence your business) is to connect with influencers in your industry.

Instagram influencer marketing introduces the customer to your brand from a trusted source (the influencer) in a casual way instead of via a traditional ad. This maximises the chances of someone following your business account and become a customer/client.

Hashtags

Use hashtags to attract new customers that would be interested in your content or product. You can even use a branded hashtag unique to your business – either the name of your brand or anything that represents its culture. Use this branded hashtag on all of your photos and, with time, your followers will start using it on their photos too.

Be consistent

If you want to get more followers on Instagram organically, it’s important that you stick with a theme. If your theme is coffee, don’t confuse people by sharing too many cat photos, for example. People started following your account because of the type of photos you share – don’t switch things around too much. And be sure to use high-quality photos that showcase your brand in the best possible light.

Community content

There really is a community for everything. Investing time in your community members by liking, commenting and even sharing their content is a great way to capture more Instagram followers and turn them into loyal customers.

Turn your bio into a call to action

Your Instagram bio should be able to convey what your business does and tell a customer how to find you, while showcasing the company’s personality and prompting the customer to take action. You can also include a hashtag to encourage followers to associate their content with your brand and expand your business’s visibility.

The field for entering a URL in your profile is essential and you should make the most of it. When you want to promote new content, place a short, trackable link in the bio. You can then promote the content via the photo caption on your latest post (i.e. “Check the link in our bio for more!”). Be sure to change the link regularly and according to the content you want to promote.

Timing is everything

Top brands only post about five times a week, so the key is not the quantity of posts but the quality and consistency. Create a schedule around the best times of day for engagement. This varies day by day, though after-work hours are generally best because that’s when people tend to spend more time on their phones checking social media (or that’s the theory, at least).

We can help you grow your business’s Instagram account organically. Get in touch at contact@redsquirreldigital.com

Maximising the advertising potential of YouTube

As YouTube reaches a soaring 150 billion monthly views, one can’t help but wonder what the video giant has in store. Advertisers long ago started to appreciate the ever-growing community of video sharing but as YouTube’s 13th anniversary approaches, the platform remains one of the least-exploited social media outlets.

Ever since YouTube became part of the Google family we have seen the development of a unique media hybrid, where television meets search engine to create the ultimate relevant content platform. Figures show that YouTube is now the second most-used search engine after Google and the highest search term in Google keywords. But what is it that YouTube offers that no other platform can?

Millennial favourite

YouTube is a game changer in several ways: videos are the most popular media product among 16-34 year olds, aka the “millennials”; it offers direct SEO benefits; targeting your content is as precise as ever as you have multiple options to provide the desired actions for advertisers – whether it’s generating mass brand exposure or driving direct traffic and sales.

YouTube has outlined the importance of incorporating TV campaigns into the platform for maximum reach. The report stated that advertised content reaches 100% of the above-mentioned millennials as they are the most active online generation, and specialists advise a shift of at least 25% of marketing budget to the video-sharing website. Omni-channel advertising is not something new in the industry, but YouTube as a channel is a missing element from most marketers marketing mix, which is a big oversight.

YouTube campaigns add a level of engagement that no other channel can provide: your content can be targeted not only according to your target audience’s demographics and preferences, but you can also choose specific placements channels for your ad to appear. These can include the new vlogging (video blogging) celebrities, whose YouTube channels are making them the new stars of the online world, which means your content is going to be shown to a highly relevant audience in a space that is contextually relevant.

The video-hosting site delivers beyond traditional TV – you have full transparency over the reach of your advert, how many people watched it in its entirety, how many clicked through to your website and how many saw the five-second impressions of your advert

The second great thing that most marketers don’t realise about the potential reach and returns of YouTube is just how cost-effective it is. YouTube works on a TrueView metric that only charges you if the full extent of your video is watched. With the the viewer able to skip ahead after five seconds of forced view, you know that, if the viewer has watched your full advert, it’s because they have actively chosen to engage with your ad.

This is where the online video-hosting site delivers beyond traditional TV – you have full transparency over the reach of your advert, how many people watched it in its entirety, how many clicked through to your website and how many saw the five-second impressions of your advert (brand reach). Also, the forced five-second delivery of your advert means you’re getting millions of impressions at absolutely no cost, and the ability to place links to the purchase page of your website within the advert means the platform can also perform as a direct sales driving channel.

Unique opportunity 

So then, what is the dilemma? YouTube viewers continue to grow, costs for advertising are still low, it isn’t saturated yet and you can use it for direct response, so why are marketers not all over it? It’s arguable that the platform is still regarded by some as an entertainment medium, which is why some brands remain hesitant to invest in it. It’s also arguable that it isn’t very easy to set up or run. But regardless, not using YouTube as part of your online marketing mix will, sooner or later, start to negatively impact your marketing strategy.

To get the most out of YouTube you undoubtedly have to trust a specialist. As an innovative performance-based digital media agency, Red Squirrel has embraced the tremendous opportunities that YouTube advertising offers and the incredible results that we are delivering for our clients is bearing this out.

Our work for the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is a good example of how the channel drives engagement that no other channel can provide. The FOS services can be very niche – even so, the YouTube campaigns delivered a great audience reach, brand awareness and direct-response ROI. It has been an excellent example for us of how a YouTube campaign can be perfectly tailored to any product, service or just awareness.

So the message is clear: if you’re not already utilising YouTube as a marketing channel for your content, then why not? The benefits and returns are proven, it’s simply a case of being innovative and taking new approaches to maximise the opportunities and potential of the digital marketing landscape.

Red Squirrel delivers 520% ROI for UK university with Geomarketing campaign

Swansea University is a research-led institution set in Swansea Bay. Providing education for over 15,000 students, Swansea University covers a wide range of academic disciplines including the Arts, Engineering and Life Sciences.

Challenge

With ambitious plans for campus expansion and international student growth, Swansea University wanted to use a UK-based digital media agency to reach new audiences in their target markets. Red Squirrel Digital were asked to create a digital marketing strategy to drive international student recruitment enquires in the key target market of Nigeria.

With a need to reach a niche audience in very specific locations within Nigeria, the challenge was to be able identify the right audience that matched the course entry criteria for Swansea University. The secondary challenge was to ensure that all applicants were processed in an effective and efficient way from the UK, a procedure that is traditionally carried out by in-country agents.

Solution

With a brief to provide a strong ROI with a limited budget, Red Squirrel’s approach was to use very niche targeting on a real-time bidding process to ensure maximum reach and ROI. With Nigeria leading the way in the mobile market in Africa – 25% of consumers own a smartphone – the group’s research and analysis highlighted that a mobile campaign would deliver the furthest reach and return. Using a mobile ad display network, the campaign ran for a period of four weeks targeting set university campuses around key cities, with ongoing optimisation of location, user device ID, publisher sites, and creative to deliver a higher ROI.

Process

Red Squirrel’s first step was to research the market and identify the Nigerian cities that held the highest number of post graduate students. They then set up geo location targeting for mobile devices within a 5 km radius around five Nigerian city campuses and targeted users of publisher sites that had a strong student audience. Location targeted cities and districts included Lagos, Port Harcourt, Abuja, Kano & Ibadan.

The next step was to research the device usage in the Nigerian market to identify the banner sizes needed for the campaign. With a high Nokia feature phone usage rate in the Nigeria, we briefed our creative team to produce dynamic and creative device ad formats to provide a high CTR. All clicks were driven to a dedicated landing page for recruits to sign up to a meet and greet at an in-country event. Upon completing the form all applicants were sent a response email with further information and were presented an overlay which directed them to download the university prospectus and link through to the main university website.

Results

Red Squirrel Digital outperformed Swansea University’s key objectives by delivering a far reaching branding exercise as well as a 520% increase in ROI:

  • 13,730,225 impressions
  • 91,815 clicks
  • 8,458 data captures
  • 3,683 PDF downloads
  • 4,573 clicks to website